"Well something funny that happened this week..."

Mon, Aug 20, 2012 at 7:20 AM

Howdy Family!

Wow sounds like everything is happening so fast! I hear that Andrea and Abe got there one week, and then the next they have a house! And Laurel will be moving too! So much is going on, and Nat starts junior high! And you are remodeling the house! Hopefully things can calm down for you guys here in a little bit. Sounds fun though! I can't wait to see pictures of Andrea and Abe's new place and also the finished product of our remodeling. And thanks for the scripture Dad, I can relate well to that sometimes.

Well things here are crazy aswell. We are doing lots of things to get our ward moving! The pace was a little slow here but we are starting to get going now. We have been teaching alot with our members and taking the young men with us during the day. Alot of the young men only have school until 11 or noon and don't have much to do after that so they are usually free and it is something good for them to do! And it helps us aswell, they are fun to be with. Our English class is going really well. Our first class only two people came, but then the second was more like 10! And people are really liking it and are inviting people. Also our activity on friday went well, alot of people arrived late but it was still great. It started with about 10 people and ended with like 25. We did a treasure hunt and I made brownies. Everyone loved them. Tell Mark Lybbert thanks! 

We will continue doing these activities to help the members, non-members and less-actives. The work of the Lord is exciting, never-ending, and fun! I really love these people here and I hope we can leave this ward better than we found it. I am playing the Organ here (they don't have a piano) so that is fun aswell. 

This week during district meeting we decided to fast to find more people, specifically more men because the church needs more men here! During our fast, we found an awesome family that lives really close to the church. We made a contact with the dad, who at the time had a beer in his hand, and he let us come back and teach his family. We are teaching 4 of the 5 members (one of the sons isn't home often and I don't think is much interested). They all went to church sunday and agreed to be baptized! We just need to help them with the Word of Wisdom, I know the Lord will help them because when ever He gives us a commandment, he will always help us fulfill! (1 Nephi 3:7) I am very excited for them.

We also found a lady who has already heard about the church because she is currently using familysearch.org. She came to our english class the same day we knocked her door. The young men washed her cars already too (they are saving up to go to EFY). She is very awesome, just that her ''husband'' is in Rio right now and they plan to marry the beginning of December. We will have to talk to her more and figure out what we can do. She loves our church though and I am excited for her and hope we can help her embrace the Gospel in her life and in her family.

Well something funny that happened this week, one young man had a football and I got way excited because I haven't thrown a football in awhile. I was in my church clothes but I just wanted to make a few tosses. So we did a few tosses and then I remembered my long-snapping days. I bent over to do a long snap and at the same time ripped my pants a little bit. But it's okay cause mom sent me with a sewing kit and so I will sew it right up! It was pretty funny though. It wasn't huge and no one can tell it's there so I continued on throughout the day.

Well I am grateful for the oppurtunity to serve here. I am grateful for the success we have had so far and I hope we can remain humble and hard-working so we can acheive great things here. All things good come from God. We must always remember to give our thanks to our Heavenly Father for all he does for us. I am grateful for this Gospel and for the chance to be a missionary. Sometimes it's hard to deal with the responsibilty of being a missionary, but I can always remember that what I am doing is what Heavenly Father wants me to do and that His spirit can always be with me if I live worthy and am ready to recieve Him. 

I love you all and I hope you have a splendid week! Tchau!

Yours Truly,

Elder Smith

Pic #1: This was after our activity Friday! I love these people!
Pic #2: Me and Elder Pechel! 
Pic #3: This is Marcello, a young man in the ward. He is always willing to help us and is great. One day he was sad and I asked him why and he said he was hungry. Another time he was tracting and teaching with us and he realy wanted ice cream. So we told him we would buy him ice cream if he stayed with us until 7PM. We bought him ice cream, but still he left a little early. He is way funny. 

"Always something new here in Brasil!"

Aug 13, 2012 at 8:41 AM

Dear family,

Howdy! Sounds like the reunion was awesome! Too bad Jake and Abe couldn't go, but it's okay, I know how it feels! But don't worry I know my mission is very important and so I don't feel too sad. I like hearing about everything though. Send me some pictures of the house! I want to see the progress! Not even six months and already so much has changed!

Well this was my first half week in my new area! It's cool, I feel like I already know these people, there already feel like a family to me! There are some great people in the ward. Including one young man named Marcello, he did some visits with us and fell asleep during a lesson, then after he really wanted ice cream so we got him some ice cream and he helped us out for a while. He is great though and has a strong testimony and loves the church.

I had to re-learn how to use the bathroom again. When I got to my new house there was even toilet paper! Just a sprayer thing like we have on our kitchen sink. I asked my companion where the toilet paper was and he said you use that sprayer and then a towel. Or you can just take a shower! Well We did buy some toilet paper this week and so I think we will begin this mode or at least some of us. Always something new here in Brasil!

We have some really great investigators right now. One being a relief society lady who didn't smoke yesterday! She had been smoking for awhile and then went down to two yesterday and now zero! We will work with her more this week and hopefully she can be baptized! Her sister is baptized and her neice has been attending church alot! Just that her mom wants to see her baptism. We have some other great investigators aswell and I am excited to help them out.

We are going to be doing an activity this Friday and hopefully every friday after aswell. There are not many activities here so this will help unite the ward and give members something to do and to bring their friends to. Also we are starting an english class. I hear lots of stories about converts who found the church through an English Class. I am really hoping to help this ward grow in number and quality! 

Well I love you all and I miss you all aswell! Thanks for all your support over the years and now while I am on my mission. I know this work is important and I know the Gospel is the greatest thing! When we live the Gospel and help others live the Gospel, we see the love of our Heavenly Father and the greatness of the Plan of Salvation. 

See ya later!

Elder Isaac Theodore Smith

P.S. Tell Russ I got the 5 dollars and thanks very much!
P.S.S. Can you get me a pancake recipe? A member gave me some maple syrup (homemade, it's a little different than I am used to but what's new?) so I want to use it!
P.S.S.S. My hair was pretty long and so everyone at church was calling me Joseph Smith just like at the CTM!

"I have been transferred to the city of João Pessoa!"

 Aug 8, 2012 2:30 PM

Hello Family!

Thanks for the pictures and updates, looks like an awesome time there
at McCall and at Kimmy's wedding! Tell her congrats for me. So are
Andrea and Abe up there for good now? How is the remodeling on the
house coming?

I have been transferred to the city of João Pessoa! My area is called
Geisel and my companion is Pechel. He is a Brazilian from Curitiba but
looks really American! He is a red head like Abe. I haven't gotten a
chance to talk to him much but I am excited to get to work here.

Nova Republica was a great area. I met alot of great people and left
knowing that the Lord had sent me there for a reason. I also learned
alot from my companion Elder Paiva. I will miss those people!

Well I don't have much time because I got here late but I am grateful
to be here on a mission and I am hoping to be a great missionary for
the Lord to help people embrace the sacrifice of our Savior Jesus
Christ. I am very grateful for His sacrifice and I know that I would
be nowhere without the Gospel and my family.

I love you and will write more Monday. Thanks for everything!

Elder Smith

P.S. Mom I got my package and thank you very much! It was all very
good! Tell the Del Toro's thanks for the shirt. I will try to write
them a letter soon.

"miracles are happening here in Brasil"

Mon, Jul 30, 2012 at 7:27 AM

Wow it seems like every week ten new things have changed at home! Way exciting though, I'm happy for Tony, it will be way cool to hear his stories. 

Well the remodeling has finally begun? You will have to send some pictures when it's done. So what's all being done right now? When does grandma move in? How long will Andrea and Abe live with you? I remember that other summer when they both had internships and lived with us, it was awesome. The family just never seems to leave that place! I know I will want to live close by too so I don't blame them! Girl's camp sounds great, too bad Nat got sick! Laurel sent me some good pictures though.That's awesmoe about Kimmy aswell! Tell her congrats for me!

Well this week went well. I learned a lot about the role of the Spirit in our lives and in our teaching. Uncle Russ sent me a great article about the Spirit and it helped me alot. It referenced the parable of the ten virgins and how the ones that were pprepared were wise because they had taken the Holy Spirit as their guide. We must do the same in our lives if we wish to be the people God wants us to be. It is way dificult to recognize the Spirit but I know that as we live worthily and do what feels to be right and follow the promptings when we recognize them, we will be blessed and will become who Heavenly Father wants us to be. 

At church yesterday we had an investigator who is pretty awesome. During the week we were walking to an appointment and took a route we usually don't take. On the way we saw this investigator who we haven't seen in a while, and he asked if we could come by sunday. We asked what time, and he said, the hour you pick people up for church! He had alot of questions and actually told my companion during sacrament meeting that he felt something different. I know that he knows the Gospel is true, he just has doubts of converting because his family is verycatholic. We are going to take Marcello there today because Marcelo had alot of trouble with his family and I think could really help this investigator (his name is Reinaldo),

We also had some less-actives at church today that we had visited this week. One being a couple who isless-active because I think they feel weird at church because they are not married. In our visit with them, we asked if they had a desire to get married, they said yes. We asked when, they said like december or january. We talked about how we shouldn't wait to recieve blessings. We helped them set a date sooner to get things started for the marraige. The 13th of August they are going to the place to get things started! It's different here and they have to wait a little, but I was so excited when they agreed on it I couldn't stop smiling. And then they came to church and it put the cherry on the cake!

Well miracles are happening here in Brasil. We can either choose to be weighed down by the hard things and sad things that happen, or we can try our best to help good things happen! I am certain the second option is better and will help the world always become a better place!

I love you all, thanks for all your support and prayers and everything. You guys are awesome! I miss you all! My next email will be next wednesday because we have transfers. 

Oh hey Mom can you send me that black bean soup recipe that grandma has that I made that one time?

-Elder Smeech

P.S. Yes the package is at the mission office and I will be getting it wednesday. I had to pay to pick it up. Can you guys check my account and let me know how much I have in there because sometimes I have to take money out.