Rio de Janeiro

Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Monday, August 26, 2013

So Nova Iguaçu is super super super huge!!!  We take a bus everywhere.  Our chapel is 20 minutes walking and is super fancy. We have to have some good organization to be able to work the area efectively.  We have a really cool family to complete.  The husband Daniel has been going to church for 8 years and has never been baptized because hasnt felt like he has gotten a testimony yet.  We are working with him and he is progressing like crazy.  We are hoping and praying that his hour has arrived and that the Lord can complete what is lacking.  

Our bishop is super cool- a black belt juditsu teacher.  Who would have ever thought that a guy like that would be bishop?  We were in a meeting with him, and it was made clear that he is the man for the job.  He seems to be able to perceive the necessities of each member with the smallest bit of information.  

Well, unfortunately, I have to head out.  But, I love you all and I will write more next time. 


Elder Stinnett 

Monday, August 19, 2013

Transferred!  After a couple of super mixed up transfers in Vila São Luis, I was transferred to Nova Iguaçu, Nova Iguaçu.  My comp will be Elder Leal (Brasilleiro).  I am super excited for a little change.  I have only heard good things about this area!  

So this week, I got to go with Elder Borges for his last training with president Lima.  We learned there about the importance of complimenting people.  It is so easy and natural to skip over the good things of a person and just see the  errors.  As a duplo, Elder Borges and I have made the goal to compliment every single contact.  It has really made a difference in the way that I look at people.  When you actively search for the good qualities of the people surrounding you, you end up just feeling so happy and grateful for all the Lord has done in the world.  

One day we were walking in the Square of Vila and there was a man on a bench that stopped us in our tracks.  He had whiskey on his breath and drugs at his side.  He asked us who we were and explained that he needed help.  His wife kicked him out, he cant hold a job, he is living with his sister in a small house, and has no where to turn.  We sat down by him and started to explain that it wasnt without a cause that he felt that he needed to talk to us.  We shared a scripture that explained that it will be through his Savior that the miracle of healing will happen.  After a short time, we grabbed his information and marked a date to visit him.  I asked him what time he would be in his house.  He looked at me and had tears in his eyes and responded *Any time, whatever hour you mark, just tell me.  I need this.  I need this.  Just tell me the hour.*  As we walked away, I remembered the story of the woman who reached for the hem of Christs robe as he walked by, having faith that she would be cured.  In that moment, a piece of the puzzle clicked.  We really are representatives of Christ.  As incapable, flawed and imperfect as we are, we were called of God to work miracles in the lives of the people around us.  How humbling it is to wear Christs name on our chest knowing that we are nowhere near what He was and is.  However, He chose me.  

A different day, we were walking in the street, and we felt the need to help a lady with her shopping bags.  We lifted them to her house and she invited us in.  She lives there with her 2 kids- a boy of 18 and a girl of 10.  Her husband abandoned her and she is very nervous and anxious.  Her boy of 18 is rebelious and doesnt want anything to do with the family.  We have started the lessons with them and have seen the unfortunate catastrofes that happen because of broken families.  I think the families are the strongest protection we have against the adversary, and for this he is working double time to break them.
We visited a reference of a member who also has a broken family.  The children are grown and left, and she lives alone.  The husband was abusive, and was unfaithful to her.  (The neighbor was pregnant with his child during the same time that the wife was.)  She started crying as she told us the story.  The husband has been in the hospital for the past 5 months as he has suffered 5 strokes.  She told us that as she looks at him there each day, so helpless, she cant remember all of the terrible things that he has done against her, and continues to pray for his recovery.  I cannot even imagine being her.  Her ability to forgive is incredible. It is amazing how we continue to find people who are examples for us.

I hope that you are all doing well.  I continue to pray for you.  Wish me luck in Nova Iguaçu!!

Abraco forte, 

Elder Stinnett

 Here are some pics.  We have got the baptism of Ana by her brother who lives in American Fork Utah, the baptism of Brenda, and a pic of me Elder Carvalho, and Elder Hansen.
The last one is me with Elder Borges 

Monday, August 12, 2013

This week went super great.  Elder Borges has learned to teach really well, and has gained my confidence. We working well together as a team and are led by the Spirit to help our pesquisadores understand the importance of the gospel in their lives.  Ana (a pesquisadora of three years) was baptized this Saturday by her brother who made the trip from American Fork Utah to baptize her.  (His portuguese was a little rusty haha)  It was a day that we could feel the spirit working super strongly in all that we did.  

Also, this week, Emanuel received the priesthood -the office of a priest.  When I think about him and the progress he has made, I cant help but smile.  Here in a few short months, he will get sealed to his family for time and all eternity.  

We have a pesquisador that is super special.  his name is Matteus.  He is a great guy- has 15 years, and went to church this past sundaywith one of the moças in our ward (recent convert). He went through the three hours and even stayed after to see the baptism of Brenda (filha de recent convert).  He said he felt a peace that he doesnt really know how to describe. We are working with him to have his baptismthis Sunday. Remember him in your prayers please :D

My time is up, but Ilove you all!!

Elder Stinnett

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Hey, so guess what!?!  
I got a new comp again :D  I think that Presidente Lima just likes to use me when he has to do emergency transfers.  So I was comps with Elder Bendoski in Cesario de Melo (first area).  I left for Galeao and Bendoski stayed in Cesario de Melo and he started to train a new Elder--Elder Borges.  I went to Galeao as a DL and then I got emergency switched to come here to Vila São Luis to open Vila São Luis II and to train Elder Asto.  We passed one transfer together, and then during the middle of the 2nd transfer, the comp of our DL in Caxias ended him mission and went home leaving our DL without a comp.  To not lose the progress we made in Vila II, we sent Elder Asto to Caxias to finish be trained there by the LD and I stayed with the ZLs here in Vila as a trio to try to work Vila I and Vila II.  Something aweful happened in Cesario de Melo with one of the members so Cesario shut down, Elder Bendoski now works in the mission office, and I have a new step son Elder Borges!  I will finish training him and we will reopen Vila II.  It is gonna be a blast.  

Elder Borges is from Brasilia, looks like a hard worker and is going to help me perfect my portuguese.  He also speaks fluent Spanish (lived in Spain for 3 years) and is going to help me become tri lingual while I help him learn English :D  Because of the transfer, he didnt get to go to the lanhouse yesterday, so we had to go during language study today...

Monday, August 5, 2013

Sorry, I have no time at all to do anything today!!!  However this week has been really great.

We had a bit of a crammed schedule, Wed, we got to get up at 4 Am to get to Andarai in time for the training for the ZLs.  We got to prestar contas for the work we did and hear a lot of training from the President.  It was really great and I got to see a bit more of the life of a leader in the mission.  The next day, Elder Hansen, Elder Carvalho, and I got to pass the training for the rest of the zone in a conference.  It was great to see how the Spirit was able to give me the words that I needed to relate to the zone to help everyone have success.  My part was on 2 Nefi 31:17-18.  The Doctrine of Christ is amazing and it doesnt matter how many time I turn to that chapter, I always learn something new.  It was a bit intimidating to give a training for the whole zone, but the 30 minutes I was given passed in the blink of an eye, and I think that I ended up learning more than anyone else. haah  It is interesting to think how the things that we as missionaries do can open or shut the door we have to enter to obtain exaltation.  It is really through our example that the people we know will enter and continue on the path that has so much blessed my life.  

I am really sorry that I have to go and had to time to write anything, but life happens right?

Só fique calma e saiba que a igreja é verdadeira :D

Love you all.  Thanks so much for your support and your prayers,

Elder Stinnett