Monday, January 20, 2014

New Year's in Porto!!

Happy New year !!

shall we reflect on this past year?

Got a mission call to Portugal

Played the guitar a lot

went through the temple

started playing rugby again for the first time in almost a year

went to the MTC

got to portugal

learned portuguese (mais ou menos)

learned to love and live this gospel like I never have in my life.

Its been a good year. I have yet to make solid goals for the year to come... but considering Ill be on a mission the entire year, they should be interesting haha.

This week it rained LITERALLY non stop for the entire week. sometimes harder than others, but i was sooo damp and cold and just annoyed. portugal rain is the most annoying thing in the world. So, because of the fact that we were outside in the cold all day, all of the sisters took turns getting sick, except me. So I got to do divisions with the brasilians, which was real fun. Its so cool to see how my portuguese is improving every day, and also to see how these sisters work and how much i can learn from them. I was glad i could give all the sister a chance to take a break from the rain too, because sister Brook is from georgia and gets kind of grumy with bad weather haha.

When i did a division with sister Prieto, we had to go to the chapel to print something out for an investigator of theirs, but we forgot the keys. so what do we do? Of course i jumped the fence in a skirt, opened up the gate and then we found an unlocked window and went in haha. Only with a brazilian. love it.

There was a couple times this week where i just got really down on myself for the lack of success ive seen on my mission. I felt like it was my fault, i wasnt doing enough or i was just not good enough to deserve it, and I got really mad at Heavenly Father for not helping me out more. But i decided to have more patience and faith and just keep working harder. Well, sunday rolls around. we start out with no investigators in church, and then walk in our investigator Manuel, and out little brazlilan family! i was so happy! we had a lesson right after church with Manuel and a member that used to be a member of the same evangelical church and it was really good and we MARKED HIM FOR BAPTISM on sister brooks birthday, of all things haha. that. was the coolest thing of my mission. last sunday he was totally against it and this week, after my fasts and prayers and everything he was like, yeah. ill get baptized. man. and hes firm too, hes not going in active, hes got too much faith. Later that day we had that lesson with the brasilian family, and the member we brought served a mission in brasil and helped them see that they need to get married to get baptized and then get married in the temple. absolutely incredible. its days like that where im just like, IM SO GLAD IM ON A MISSION! They make it worth it. Its unfortunate that here in portugal, those days are few and far between.
This week we were teaching a brasilian family, and the lesson was going really really well, and the dad was talking about how he felt that he really had to go to church that week, something was just touching his heart and telling him he had to go even though he was tired, and then the little eight year old daughter goes "mas cancaço nao e uma desculpa para faltar igreja" ou seja, but being tired isnt an excuse to miss church! and all five of the adults in the room just looked over at her and it got quiet for a second, and i was freaking out inside because that was SO SICK!!!!! hahaha She just threw it down to her parents. Later in that lesson she was going though my scriptures and found a picture of the salt lake temple and was like, is this a palace??? and then we started explaining a bit about temples and she was like, why does jesus have so many palaces??? it was pretty funny. #lovebrasilians
THE CHURCH IS TRUE!!!! hopefully you guys can see the iportance of the members in that last story. Of the 15 baptisms the ward im in has had this year, only about five are active, and its the ones that were member referalls or well integrated with the members. I CANNOT STRESS THE IMPORTANCE OF PREPARING YOUR FRIENDS AND INVITING THEM TO RECIEVE THE GOSEPL. and then working with the missionaries.

I love you all family!!! Thanks for all you do!

Paz, amor, casamento do templo,

Sister Kelly Briggs

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