Arapongas, Brazil

DSC03808querido família e amigos,

        This weekend was pretty wonderful! One of our investigators, Osner, has been reading O Livro de Mórmon for 3 weeks and praying earnestly about a response in regards to baptism. He truly had, as Moroni counseled, a sincere heart and real intent to act when he received an answer. Friday night we were teaching him and his friends and as he walked us to the gate he admitted he had a dream. It was a dream truly wonderful and he told us he was ready to be baptized saturday! It was a crazy weekend on our part running around, making calls and setting up interviews! We are so blessed to have helped a few sons of our Heavenly Father enter into the waters of baptism, but boy oh boy has there been a lot of crazy running around! I think I could take on any amount of stress after the mission. The military? bring it on. Theory of grammar and complex sentence structure 402? bring it on! dating!? we´ll see. DSC03820 - Cópia
                     Osner really is an elect son of God. We’ve talked a lot about his life and the trials he has passed through. The earthquake in Haiti a few years ago really shook up his world. He tells us now that Hatianos are seeking new lives in other countries with new opportunities and he knows he was sent here to Brazil to find us and to be baptized. His friend Johnel (another one of our investigators) watched the baptism and remarked as we were preparing to leave, “Next, Osner will baptize me“. It was a great day and we are so blessed to be laborers in our father´s fields!

         I´d like to quickly share a scripture with you all that hit me this morning during study: Romanos 13:11    The night is nearly over; the day is almost here. So let us put aside the deeds of darkness and put on the armor of light.

    The morning is coming and we are chosen for this day to prepare ourselves and our brothers to meet the glory of the light without shame and with a resolve  to enter in prepared.
Eu amo vocês!
Sister Dean
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Arapongas, Brazil

Família e amigos,

 I feel like I´m always commenting on the weather in my emails. Each week I think that I´ve experienced the highest extreme there is and I always feel the need to share the brutal extremities of the climate of Brazil to, i don´t know, to seem more like a trooper I guess, but each week mother nature strengthens her resolve to surprise us. QUENTE QUENTE!!! Super hot this week. I´ve darkened about 3 shades in my foundation color and I am a little ashamed at how blatant my shoe tan lines are lol.But it´s all apart of the call.
    Sister Anderson and I are working diligentemente! We are teaching quite a large pool of people and not just Brasileiros! we´re teaching a big group of men and women from Hati! Hatianos are so humble and sincere. Now, we´re working with Osner, Johnel, Rubens, Oslin and Marie. They are sincerely searching for answers and we pray for them every day.
    I´ve been thinking a lot recently about the trials we pass through. As missionaries, we pass through hardships and heart breaks of the worst kind when someone looses the fire to search for God. Our investigators pass through the toughest of tough. I´ve been thinking of the sacrifices my family has made throughout the years. Sacrifices in every which way. but this passage in Romans 8:18 has captured the hope I feel as I consider the eternal picture:

           “I consider that our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us.“ 

    I love the scriptures. They really do contain the words of LIFE. Life eternal. read them! Ponder on them! and ask our father in heaven in the name of Christ if they are more than pretty words! We have a promise from the God who will never lie that we will receive a manifestation of truth. 🙂 I am grateful for the witnesses I have received in my life. I love you all and I thank you for your prayers!
      Nosso Pai Celestial nos ama mais que nos podemos imaginar. Ele está nos guiando!
                               com amor,
                             Sister Dean

Arpongas, Brazil

Querido Família e amigos,

  Sister Anderson and I batteled our way through a tough week! All of us passed a little sick and had high fevers, and it has been HOT. I remember arriving in Brazil and feeling betrayed at how cold/mild it was, but now I´m missing the breezey weather. Our tan lines are being defined and our resolves are toughening. Saturday, Sister Anderson and I were able to watch our investigator Anderson be baptized! Sister Anderson´s first baptism in Brazil was named Anderson, how about that!? Anderson just turned 8 and is the grandson of our recent convert Vilma. He is such a bright, happy and adorable boy. He has been preparing to be baptized for quite some time now and watching him be baptized was a pleasure.
            Sister Anderson and I are working dilligently to talk with as many people as we can and she is learning portuguese so fast! It has been a little strange taking on a little more responsibility than I am accustomed to, but I too am learning fast. I have such a testimony that the Lord qualifies those He calls, he does not call the qualified. We gain more and more abilities to become better and better servents when we recognize He has called us to serve and the best manner to fill our callings is His manner. In the words of one beloved Disney character :LET IT GO!!!“   (<- I love that song!!!) Let your pride and fear go. God has expectations much greater that we have and if we let our expectations go and work for Him, the results will be unbelievable! I am turning in to the missionary He wants me to be, not the missionary I think I can be. Our best is good, but His best is better! Don´t settle for your best, loose yourself in His errand and become His best.
Com muito amor,
Sister Dean

Arapongas, Brazil

Querido família e amigos,

         Conference week was such an inspired, wonderful and unbelievably perfect time! I am so amazed at modern technolgy; watching the servents of the Lord speak to a small city in a little chapel in Brazil was so surreal and made me reflect of the prophicies of the Gospel flodding the whole Earth. I know that the inspired light of the Gospel cannot be held back; it touches our hearts and converts our minds and is spreading like wild fire! I hate to admit it, but I remember as a child sitting in out living room in the house on Hilly Haven Road watching conference, mom and dad on the green couch, the girls sprawled out on the carpet next to our red nail polish stains with our hard cover Book of Mormons covered with butterfly stickers and thinking ´´wow, this is loooong´´. This weekend I couldn´t help but think ´´wow, it´s over already… how sad´´.  I am so greatful for the examples of righteous living in my life that have led me to love the words of the servants of the Lord.  It was also unbelievably wonderful to hear te discoursers speak in their native language! When Elder Marcos A Goody from Brazil started to speak in Portuguese there was an audible gasp in the chapel and I was so undescribably giddy! Sister Briggs and I were blessed to have a few investigators view with us as well.
          In other less exciting news, Sister Briggs was transfered. We had been anticipating her moving, but hoping it wouldn´t happen. Our time together was so short, but we learned so much and being with her for one transter was a breath of beautiful fresh air. I will miss her a lot… A LOT. My new companion will be Sister Anderson and get this: she and Sister Briggs were companions at the MTC in Provo! At the end of their MTC experience, Sister Briggs recieved her visa and went straight to Brazil while Sister Anderson was reassigned to a mission in Virginia (i think) and she arrived in Brazil about 3 weeks ago… I´d be lying if I said I wasn´t a little nervous. Becoming the senior companion with someone who speaks less Portuguese than me is a little bit frightening, but I am comforted by the fact that it all is inspired by our Heavenly Father. We are ment to be together here in Arapongas and if we can learn to turn our will and our weaknesses over to the Lord I know we will do amazing things as instruments in the Lord´s hands.
          I love you all! Eu sou muito grata que Eu possa escrever os pensamentos de meu coração e os medos de mudança. Eu sei que O Senhor e vocês me dão a força eu preciso para continuar. Suas orações me dão inspiração e coragem.
   Com amor,
Sister Whitney Dean