Week 52: Things are heating up here in Bagé

Hello loved ones!!!!

JK IT IS FREEZING HERE IN BAGÉ. But things are heating up in the missionary work sense haha. But for real it is cold as heck here

Another week of missionary work. This week passed by INCREDIBLY fast. And lots of things happened.

Unfortunately, Alison decided that he didn’t want to be baptized, for now. That was sad. But we are going to keep working with him, and trust in the Lord´s timing.

We had a zone conference with P Cruz and it was SO GOOD. I am so grateful to have such an inspired man as my mission president.

Sister Araujo and I found a golden family this week. Cassandra and Jaderslay, and their three children, Mariana, Luis, and Bernardo. They are wonderful, they are so incredibly excited about church and the gospel, they have already started reading the Book of Mormon every day. Unfortunately, the parents have problems with the word of wisdom. But it’s all good because God is powerful and they have the desire to improve their lives and they believe wholly that through the gospel they will be able to do that. Also, they have to get married, but that is a small obstacle 🙂

ALSO other golden family, Ozana e Helen, mother and daughter. Helen only has 11 years but she already did visits with us and she is a brilliant little light.

ALSO other miracle, this Sunday we woke up and it was raining and FREEZING. Which means: zero people want to go to church. So I was like “are you kidding me” with Heavenly Father (lol first mistake) but I quickly repented hahaha and maintained my faith that he would provide a way. And so we went to the houses of our investigators, the members, inactives, everyone, calling, asking favors, promising blessings, etc. It took about an hour and a half but we left our house way early and we were prepared. And so finally we arrived at church with almost all of our investigators that we planned to be there, 10 in total. Everyone was wet from the rain, cold, but so happy. The spirit was so strong and I was so so grateful for our dear Heavenly Father’s mercy and love. I knew that He wanted His children in His house on Sunday, and so I knew that He would provide a way, and He provided. GOD IS SO GOOD GENTE

I love you all!!!! Don’t have photos this week, sorry!!! Next week!

Com amor,

Sister Smith

Week 51:The liberating power of the Atonement. And also of staring at the moon for a while lol

HEY FAMILY. Loved ones.

Hey so this week was another slower week lol. But it was a wonderful week also. I am having so much fun here on the mission. Sister Araujo is HILARIOUS. So funny. We died laughing this whole week. This was another week of rejections. But it’s all good, because Alison said he wanted to be baptized this Saturday!!!!! We have been praying for him so much, that Heavenly Father could open his heart, and He did!! So we are super happy.

I don’t have much time today, but this is the update: that mission life is hard, super hard, but SO GOOD. So incredibly good. This week Sister Araujo and I had a dope experience together. We were walking back from a teaching appointment that didn’t go as we had planned, and it was suuuuper long; it was an hour long walk back to our other teaching appointment. But luckily, we get to walk through this beautiful field, and in the middle, we stopped and stared at the moon for a while because it was SO beautiful. And we were walking back, bearing our testimony, talking about the wonderfulness and greatness and incomprehendableness (not sure if that is a word) of this gospel and of the Atonement of Jesus Christ, specifically. And we were walking in the neighborhoods and we passed by a house and heard the sounds of a cell phone… you know the sounds that the cell phone makes when someone is using it lol anyways, and I thought, these people have no idea what they are missing. A beautiful night with the opportunity to thank God for his countless blessings. And in that moment, we both felt just free. Even though we have rules and we can’t always do what we want, we both felt so free in that moment. Free from the worries of the world and completely liberated by the gospel of Jesus Christ. I can’t describe it very well, but it was really cool. And this morning I read in Joseph Smith History, the last part, the account of Oliver Cowdery when he and Joseph Smith received the Aaronic Priesthood:

“While the world was racked and distracted- while millions were groping as the blind for the wall, and while all men were resting upon uncertainty, as a general mass, our eyes beheld, our ears heard, as in the ‘blaze of day’; yes, more- above the glitter of the May sunbeam, which then shed its brilliancy over the face of nature!”

And I thought, “I feel ya, Oliver.” Lol but seriously, it was a marcing moment for me. This gospel is the most liberating thing in the world, and all because of the Atonement of Jesus Christ.

I love you all!!!! Have a wonderful week!!!

Photos:
1. We gave a bath to a dog of an irmã lol his face 2. Almost fell asleep in Sister Araujo’s prayer during our personal study… lol I am low key exhausted lolol
3. I saw this man and felt a prompting to give him a Book of Mormon… he felt so touched that he let me take a picture with him. It was a wonderful moment
4. WE LOVE THE LIVRO DE MORMON
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Week 50: Open your soul

Hello loved ones!!!!

This week was a ROLLERCOASTER. Good thing I love roller coasters haha

But for real. We did divisions!! And I stayed with two different sisters, two days each one. It was great. We ate a lot and talked a lot and laughed a lot and worked a lot and were rejected a lot… lol this week was full of rejections. But don’t worry folks, it just means that Heavenly Father has something much bigger and better in store for us, so we are working and waiting anxiously.

BUT one of these wonderful things that Heavenly Father has already placed in our way is Alison Lennon (he said that it’s not because of John Lennon but I like to think that it is). Last week while Rui was having his baptismal interview, we were just chillin in the chapel waiting for him to finish, and lo and behold, enters a young man, sits down on the pew, and starts to read in the hymn book. So we go talk to him, thinking he was a member of another ward or something, but no, he was just passing by the church, saw that it was open, and decided to enter to see what it was like.

Whaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaat

So Sister Araujo and I jumped on this opportunity and taught him the Restoration then and there in the chapel, and it was DOPE. And we have continued visiting him, teaching him, he is praying, reading the Book of Mormon, and going to church, yesterday he told us that he feels peace and calmness in the church and when he reads the Book of Mormon. He has some doubts about baptism, but we are helping him with this and tudo vai dar certo gente.

Also the members are wonderful here; there are few, but they are powerful and inspired. They are helping us a ton, and the work is moving upward and onward. We had a Family Home Evening with one of our investigators and some of my favorite members last night, and we were singing “I Know that My Redeemer Lives,” and as we were singing I looked around at everyone, every person that was singing off key and it was not the most beautiful hymn I’ve ever heard sung haha BUT, the spirit touched me profoundly in that moment, I was overwhelmed with the faithfulness and love and dedication that these people here have for the gospel. Being member here is not easy, not at all. I know that it is never easy in all parts of the world, but here in Bagé, with few members, with little money, even without bishop (we are currently without bishop), despite all of this, these people are so incredibly grateful and happy and have so much love for the gospel. They are the biggest example to me.

Something cool from my study this week: I am currently in Alma, and I was reading in Alma 34. Here Alma is talking about the importance of prayer; he tells us where we should pray, how we should pray, to whom we have to pray, etc. He lays it out for us. But something stood out to me significantly in verse 26. In Portuguese, he says, “Deveis abrir vossa alma,” which literally translated, means “you should open your soul”. I looked at the translation in English and it says, “pour out your soul,” which also is cool, but I don’t know, something about “open your soul” stood out to me. “Open your soul”. Open your souls in your prayers tonight gente, lay it all out on the altar, everything. And I promise that it will change everything.

I love you all!! Thank you so much for you support and love and prayers. Trust in Heavenly Father. He loves you and knows you and is with you in every moment, and He always keeps His promises.

1. . Here you can see my new addiction: goiabada with cream of milk. Also you can see how strange I am dressing here on the mish lol. But I never was very good with matching my clothes whoops

2. Dinner of champions
3. Thales and Divaldo and Dienifer moved away :(((((
4. Division with these lovelies

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Week 49: Miracles and miracles and miracles and miracles

FAMILY I have no time today to write but here are the photos of this week 🙂

It sufficeth me to say that Heavenly Father is pouring out countless miracles on us and on Bagé, and I am overwhelmed with His goodness.

I love you all!!! I’ll give you updates next week 🙂

1. Rui’s baptism!! “Rui you have to smile” 2. “Thank you” lolol ohhh Rui
3-4. The perks of waking up at 6:30 every day
5. Arte.
6. The only normal photo my daughter and I have lol

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Week 48: Shooting stars and rainbows and Divaldo’s baptism

Hello loved ones!!!
This week was wonderful. It was the first real week of Sister Araujo’s training, because of the complication of transfers and Sister Agurto going home, etc. But it was wonderful!!! Heavenly Father literally placed so many miracles in our laps. Divaldo, Thale’s dad, was baptized this Saturday!!! And after the baptism our ward has a dance at the church and he went and we didn’t obvs lol we went to work, but everyone told us on Sunday that he completely let loose, that he was so happy and dancing and laughing and seemed like a young man again, which was awesome to hear because he normally is not like that at all haha. BUT the gospel brings so much joy, so what else should we expect?

ALSO, other huge and wonderful miracle: we started working with an old investigator, Rui, that the sisters had been teaching, but stopped because he had a problem with alcohol, and also wanted to wait for a while to take on the commitment to be baptized. But this week both Sister Araujo and I felt a very strong prompting that it was his time now, so we prayed a ton a ton a ton and on Thursday we went to Patricia’s house (Carol’s mom), and he was there. We gave a lesson completely inspired by the spirit, I don’t even remember what was said, and at the end Patricia said, “If it were up to me he would be baptized next Saturday.” And we just looked at Rui and he said, “That is what I want.” And he told us then that two days ago he had already made the decision to stop drinking, and then Sunday he went to church, and he is continuing strong and firm and will be baptized this week!!!! God is so good, and He is so aware of His children.

Also, we had wonderful experiences with Heavenly Father and His beautiful art this week. We were bearing our testimonies one night and we both looked up at the sky and in that moment saw a shooting star. Another afternoon we were walking, bearing our testimonies to each other again, and we looked up and saw a rainbow. God is so so so good, I almost can’t comprehend. The more we recognize the tender mercies in our life, the more He will continue placing them in our path.

I love you all!!! Thank you all for your love and support and prayers, they mean everything to me.

This scripture and this hymn are the theme of how this week has been beautiful 🙂

For ye shall go out with joy, and be led forth with peace: the mountains and the hills shall break forth before you into singing, and all the trees of the field shall clap their hands. Isaiah 55:12

For the beauty of each hour
Of the day and of the night,
Hill and vale, and tree and flow’r,
Sun and moon, and stars of light,
Lord of all, to thee we raise
This our hymn of grateful praise.

Photos!
1-2. I made pancakes in the shape of 22 for Sister Araujo´s birthday and it turned out super ugly hahaha but it’s the thought that counts right
3. Divaldo’s baptism!!! And Edoardo´s jumpsuit hahahaha died laughing. It was the only one left
4. From Divaldo’s baptism lol. Thales likes to pretend that he is punk but really his heart is a soft marshmallow

I have more pics to send but we’re in a sketchy internet cafe again lol so I’ll send them next week 🙂

I love you all!

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Week 47: HAPPY BIRTHDAY MAMA and Thale’s baptism and training and more craziness lol

Hello everyone!!!

I wanted to give a shout out to the most wonderful person on the face of this planet, my mother 🙂 Happy birthday to you, you have given me everything and I am here because of you. I love you very much.

So I have zero time today haha but miracles are happening in Bagé! Thales, the young man that I talked about last week, was baptized!! It was wonderful, and the whole ward went to support him. He is so good, he has such a strong testimony of the gospel and it is such an example to me. And, other miracle, his dad saw everything, saw his change in that he finally wanted to baptized and the joy that it brought to him, and decided he wanted to baptized too! So we are going to baptize him this Saturday! God is so good, gente, and He hears our prayers.

Also training is going wonderfully!! I met my daughter, Sister Araújo! She is from Belem, and she is wonderful and ready to work 🙂 I know that we are going to have an amazing time together here in Bagé.

Also Sister Agurto left, which was so sad, we became best friends in three weeks and I laughed SO much with her, but she is ready to move on with the plan and blessings that Heavenly Father has for her.

I read something that I LOVED in Jesus the Christ. He said, “Prayer is made up of heart throbs and the righteous yearnings of the soul, of supplication based on the realization of need, of contrition and pure desire… it is the order of the divine in human nature.” James E. Talmage

SO TRUE. I love you all!!!

1. The trainers!!!
2. We stayed in a super fancy hotel haha
3. Super fancy painting
4. Thale’s baptism!!! And the wonderful members of this wonderful ward
5. Sister Agurto left 😦 We had to go to the bus station at 6 in the morning and if you look closely you can see my sweats that I forgot to take off hahaha
6. Me and my new comp, Sister Araujo! We forgot to take a photo of our faces lol sorry next week

trainersfancy hotelfancypaintithalesbaptismsisarguto leftnewcomptrainersfancy hotelfancypaintithalesbaptismsisarguto leftnewcomp

Week 46: Craziness and Wonderfulness and I will be a mom…

Loved ones!!!! Crazy things are happening! These last few weeks feel like a dream…. because of the craziness and wonderfulness that is happening haha

So to start of with something wonderful, we had a baptism! Sister Agurto was preparing a wonderful girl, Carol, for baptism and she was baptized this Saturday! She is amazing, she is only ten years old but she is so smart. She did some visits with us the other day, and she has a fiery testimony of the gospel that she is not afraid to share. It was very impressive to me because there really is no age limit to feel the love of our Heavenly Father for us and to understand and feel the truthfulness of the restored gospel.

Secondly, another thing very wonderful, we started working with a young man of 18 years last week who had been being taught by the missionaries for almost 6 months. He had a testimony that the church is true, but feared the commitment of baptism, so he had never wanted to be baptized. But a miracle happened, we were praying for him a lot a lot a lot and on Thursday he called us and told us that he wanted to meet with us. So we met up with him and the first thing he told us was that he finally made the decision with Heavenly Father that he wanted to be baptized next Saturday!!! Gente, he marked his own baptismal date. That is the first time that has happened to me in the history of my mission. It was wonderful and the spirit was so strong and we were so happy and the Lord is pouring out miracles upon us and I am so very grateful.

Okay last thing, I am in Porto Alegre again! And I am going to train! Tomorrow the greenies will arrive and I’ll meet my trainee and I am very very very excited and very humbled that the Lord is trusting me to be a mom and a little terrified with this concept haha. But I am praying lots and lots that I will be able to be an instrument in his hands to be a good mom 🙂 (trainer lol)

These last few weeks I have felt more close to Heavenly Father than I ever have in my life; I feel Him in every detail here on the mission. It is wonderful. My heart is filled with peace constantly, and I frequently find myself thinking that this is something heavenly, that this must be how we will feel in heaven for time and all eternity, but even a million times better.

This quote has become so incredibly real to me, not sure if I already shared it but I read it quite frequently so I’ll send it again 🙂

“God has infinite attention to spare for each one of us. He does not have to deal with us in mass. You are as much alone with Him as if you were the only being He had ever created. When Christ died, He died for you individually just as much as if you had been the only man or woman in the world.” -C.S. Lewis

I testify with all of my heart of this quote! I love this gospel so incredibly much. Notice all the tender mercies that Heavenly Father so lovingly places in our lives and I promise that it will change everything.

I love you all!!!! Thank you for your prayers and love and emails and letters, they mean the world to me.

Photos!
1-2. Baptism of Carol!!! She is adorable
3. Sending my love from Bagé
4. My new comp, Sister Agurto! Who will only be my comp for one more week lol

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carol

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