E aí todo mundo! Que está acontecendo lá nos Estados Unidos? Espero que vocês estejam bom demais! This week shot by super fast as usual. I brought my journal to the lan house with me today so that I could remember the highlights of what went on during the week. Not the greatest week ever but we worked hard and The Good Lord blessed us. I found a quote last week that I wanted to share with you. It was given by President Boyd K Packer at the last conference April 2013 this is his quote" I have come to know that faith is a real power, not just an expression of belief." This is something that I really need to work on. One of the things I learned in New York is when we have faith great things happen. And thats something I am trying to apply now in Brazil. Faith is more than just a belief, it as an actual power. Some of my favorite scriptures on faith are found in Ether chapter 12 verses 12-16. This illustrates exactly what happens when we don't have faith and when we do haev faith. When we have no faith nothing happens. But as well we must act on our faith and work. Faith without works is dead. I copied these scriptures down for you guys because they have a much stronger significance to me now. For if there be no afaith among the children of men God can do no bmiracle among them; wherefore, he showed not himself until after their faith.
Monday, May 20, 2013
btw the picture with all 6 missionaries is all of us at the lunch the day of the baptism. On Mon, May 20, 2013 at 1:48 PM, Richard Kennington
Monday, May 13, 2013
Bom Dia Família! Beleza? Wow it was so good talking to you guys yesterday! It was really heart warming and refreshing! I'm sure you all enjoyed it as much as I did, I was sad that your end was having quality problems cause I didn't have really any of that happen on my end. But the Lord blessed us and it all worked out for the most part. You guys all looked and seemed so good its crazy seeing you guys after 5 months but it seems like its gone by super quick yesterday was 5 months to the day that I entered the mtc in Provo! Crazy! I will have been out over a year the next time we get to talk though that's a crazy thought. I'm scared that my mission is going by too quick there are too many people to help and not enough time to do it. Its weird that you guys will be finishing up this year of school really soon, you guys will have a fun summer up ahead of you, I'm a little jealous in some ways but I think about it more and realize that I would rather be down here in Brazil spreading the Gospel of happiness. So we had a good week here in Cáceres. It was extremely hot as usual but the Lord blessed us and we found several new good investigators to teach. One of my favorite things about being a missionary is when we ask people if they prayed about our message of the Restoration, or the Book of Mormon or the Gospel as a whole and they respond that yes they prayed and then we asked them how they felt and they said they just felt so good and peaceful and that they believe these feelings come from God. That just makes me so happy to hear that from people. Now we just hope and pray that they will act on their feelings and be baptized and join the church, and more importantly that they will be truly converted to the Gospel, cause it doesn't do any good do baptize tons of people if none of them are truly converted because then they will just go inactive. The key to really helping people become converted to the Gospel is through the Book of Mormon. As they read their lives are blessed in so many ways and they recognize the goodness of God and the Church. So last P day was cool we went to the town center and checked out some of the stuff there. Cáceres has a huge Catholic church that is always open for the public so we went in and checked it out, there was hardly anyone in there. It was cool but really strange at the same time. It just kinda has a neutral feel inside. It just strange seeing plastic almost life size figures of Christ hanging on a cross with really detailed features of where he had nails driven into him. But every church is different and does their own things. It was also kinda cool cause they had this burial plot thing right in the chapel of where a former catholic bishop or something had been buried. One thing that I have realized on my mission is most everyone is trying to do whats right, by going to church and reading the bible and stuff they just don't have all the truth because they know not where to find it,as the scriptures say. That's why we are here as missionaries is to find the honest in heart who when they hear the truth are ready to hear it and embrace it. Another thing we realize is that all other churches aren't evil. They are just people trying to become closer to Christ. After we got done looking at the Catholic Church we went to this little lunch place that said Tapioca on a banner in front of it, I got really excited cause I love tapioca pudding! But tapioca is different here in Brazil, they use it to make these like thick patty pancake things that they fill with meat or coconut or chocolate filling. Aw its good! I have a picture, it was nothing like I expected it kinda weird because the shell thing has a really rubbery texture. But I like it alot maybe I will get another today cause they are cheap. So We had one of our zone leaders come down this week with another Elder that served for 2 transfers here in Cáceres back in November and December, I went on splits with him all of Friday it was cool. His name is Elder Morais a Brazilian from Curitiba. He was almost 25 and is a convert for two years. He only has 2 more months than me on the mission and he is a really awesome missionary. And pretty much all day we ran around and visited the people that he had baptized. It was actually pretty exhausting, we went to a members house and asked if we could borrow their bikes for the day cause we had so many miles that we needed to cover, so we got to ride around on bikes for the day it was sweet but my bum was killing at the end of the day cause there are pot holes everywhere and my seat was a stinkin rock! But it was cool. I ate lots of egg sandwiches this week cause its cheap and I didn't want to buy hamburgers every night cause their cheap too but its unhealthy and it cuts into our personal time at the end of the day that we have to wind down and shower and throw clothes in the laundry. Blah seems like there is so much we to do in the last hour and a half of the day between 9 and 10:30. But they don't have miracle whip here, they have plenty of mayonnaise though. So I just use that and alot of hot sauce. Its good and cheap. Also we have been making breakfast shakes in the morning, we have a pretty nice blender in the house and so a member here showed me how to make good little fruit smoothie things, you just need fruit and milk and a little sugar and ice. And you mix it together and its stinking good! Also last p-day we went down to the river and went swimming. Haha just kidding! but we did go down by the river and take some pictures it was cool and it was a nice cool day that day. I have some pictures that I will upload for you. I don't know that about sums things up not a ton to write about. Again happy mothers day to Mom yesterday I didn't even wish it to her until the end I just completely forgot everything as soon as we started talking but that was so great talking to the family yesterday that's a great blessing to be able to talk twice a year. But at least we get to email every week I'm sure grateful for that. But yeah it sound like today we will be going to a waterfall or something I am stoked for that it should be really neat. But I sure love you guys all and am so grateful to have such a wonderful family. Just never forget that the only true happiness comes from the Gospel and from our Heavenly Father. There is no other way, no other path that we can take that brings and leads to as much happiness. There are many, many roads that we can go down but it is only the straight and narrow path of the Gospel that we must follow, It isn't the easy path and its not the most traveled path but it is the path of our Savior and it is the path that we must walk. I'm so happy that we already have the path laid out before us. The Savior never said it would be easy but he said that he would always be there, and as we put our trust in the Lord all things work out. That is the truth. Well I love you all so much and I am so happy to be here in Brazil! Oh and by the way I emailed the mission president and he said he will make sure he gets the letter sent back to grandma, so I'm guessing you should be getting it within the next week or so. But until soon! Much love! -Elder Skyler Kennington
Monday, May 6, 2013
Ola Minha Família! Esta semana foi chato demais! (This week was really annoying!) haha it's alright though. First it was transfer week which is always super hectic for everyone especially when you receive 2 new missionaries in an area. Me and Elder Reed spent a lot of time helping the new companionship get oriented and train them on where everything is in the city and where all the members homes were that they had for lunch and stuff. What a pain but we got it all sorted out now and this week Elder Reed and I should be able to go out and WORK, WORK, WORK! We had to spend a lot of time in the house this week waiting for people to show up with stuff. First we had to bum at the house cause we were waiting on our new fridge to arrive they said they would come at a certain time but they didn't show, so we left to go work and we came back and called the people and they said they would be their right away so we end up waiting for another hour and they finally show, ha then the next day our washing machine broke down so we had to call some people to fix that and then the same thing happened where we had to bum in the house waiting for them to come and drop it off, then the next day we had to go shopping because our new missionaries had nothing and we had nothing as well cause we had to throw away all of our stuff in our old fridge that we gave to the missionaries that had to move to the new house of theirs. So We didn't have food so we all went shopping and we ended up with a lot of food between the four of us. Here in Brazil they have a thing where they will deliver your groceries to your house for free because hardly anyone has cars here just bikes and motorcycles. So we did that and they said they would be about 3 hours getting it to our house. They were a little slow and it ended up being 24 hours till they actually got all of our stuff to us. Kind of a pain this week it was frustrating for everyone. Just felt like one of those weeks where we are worthless bum missionaries but we cant really do anything about it. I hope we don't have anymore problems cause I want to go out and spread to message of the Restored Gospel of Jesus Christ. Well enough of the Reclamando( Complaining) The two missionaries we received our some cool dudes. Elder Combs and Elder Duehring. Both Americans from California and both only have two transfers left on the mission. They will finish their missions out here in Cáceres. They are both really good missionaries and we get along really well with them. They are only working with the less actives in the Branch here which I learned yesterday had 630 members on the records. They sure have their work cut out for them. So yes not a whole ton to write this week. We had a good day at church yesterday had 4 of our investigators their. And we finally got one of them to go to church that we had found about a month ago, I really have gained a greater appreciation for church and the Sacrament since I have been here on my mission. What a miracle the expiação (atonement) is in our lives and I'm so grateful that we can remember our baptismal covenants and renew them every week. That's something that I think too many of us including me take for granted. Yesterday also we had a great lunch that was a first for me. We ate piranha! It was pretty dang good, we just had a big piranha fish fry. Tasted lick chicken and was all white meat. Its a little strange cause they just gut the fish and throw the rest in. So your eating this fish with these big eyes and sharp teeth that look back at you. Lots of bones though it was kind of a pain having to pick through all of those. All be honest there is alot more crazy/drunk people here in brazil that just hang out in the street. There is the ones that we are already familiar with that usually has something to say to us when we pass him. I included a picture of me and a random dog the we named Nephi. Cause we were hanging out on a street curb waiting for this drunk that always gives us a hard time to leave our street. He was outside everyone house asking for money so that he could go buy beer and we were waiting for him to leave so that he wouldn't know where we live. This dog had been following us around for miles. Don't worry he was chill and I washed my hand well afterwards. Usually a few times a week we have drunk people yell things at us like Elders! Your church only has robbers and some that say very loudly oh no the Americans! My companion usually replies no we are Germans! Its kinda funny. We have random old drunk dudes want their picture taken with us and then afterwards High five all their buddies for getting their picture with american Mormon missionaries. I guess last week when we went to that class to talk about our counrty alot of people took pictures of us and now there is many pictures of Americans on their facebook. For most of them it was the first time they had ever seen Americans in real life. But life is good here. No luck with Kelly we dropped by her house Saturday and she said she was planning on just going to church with her mom. So for now we are going to drop her, but We will check up on here every so often, we haven't given up hope yet. But I'm excited to talk to you guys on Sunday via skype it should be a good experience! I made an account her at the Lan house but I still have to set it up more on the lap top that we will be using, I will do that during this week and add mom and send you guys a confirmation email on the time and stuff. I'm not quite sure how we are going to do it since we only have 1 computer for me and Elder Reed and we are both looking at the same times to do skyping. But for now plan on doing it at about 5 o clock your time and 7 o'clock my time. We will confirm it with you during the week. Also I found out that the card grandma sent me is in Carthage and so my companion from their was transferred but he was going to try and get it forwarded to me or back home to Grandma. Also the desk in the picture of me in my green shirt is not mine, its elder laws. I will take a picture of my desk for you guys some time. But I think thats about it for this week. We went running the other morning and my legs are super sore now. I didn't realize how long its been since I had last ran. But its been almost 5 months on the mission now. Its sure gone by so quick. I hope everyone is well at home and I love you all. I hope I have more interesting stuff to tell you in my letter next week. But I love you guys and thanks for everything. Talk to you soon!