05 May 2013

4/29/13

Olá Olá Olá!
How´s my family doing? Turns out (after many exams) I am severly lactose intolerant, have chronic heartburn, chronic reflux, had Dengue, and had my foot in a cast at the same time.
CAN ANYONE TOP THAT? Just kidding... but for reals. Blessings of the mission, neh?
 This week was an awesome week though, one of the best days was when we got 8 News (8 people who committed to being baptized). That glorious feeling never gets old when they accept the invite and understand the importance of baptism! Definitely a spiritual high!
The members in our Branch have really been helping out the missionary work here with family nights, always asking if we need any help, and always willing to do whatever we ask of them! It is awesome to see the intense desire in the member´s to help us help others! That is really what this church is all about- growing and helping others together.
We´ve been studying and focusing a lot on true conversion this past week. One scripture that I fell in love with is Mosiah 4:9&10. In verse 9 it talks about the things we should believe, everything starts with the same phrase. In verse 10 it talks about the things we should do. All in all, in these 2 verses, it is saying that true conversion is 10 things (about). And the last phrase is AND NOW (dont procrastinate) see that you do these things. Such a simple and easy scripture to measure youself against. It is a survey for members who already have the truths!
My area is doing really well, witnessing many miracles. My companion is in the running for best friend status (sorry Macarena).... Haha, nah- but we are working really well together and loving the mission. And everyday is an adventure filled with laughs!

Love you all and thanks for the prayers!
Síster Clark

4/23/13

Dear Family,

So great to hear that Spencer and Kenz are all safe and sound. Everyone here was talking about it Tuesday and they ooooeeedddd and awwweeddd that I had family living there. But I thought- if anything did happen- i´ll just get a phone call. So no worries, but you were in my prayers! Today I me and my companion were with anouther dupla of Sísteres and while we were waiting in line at the supermercado two of them were reading about the bombs in Boston in a magazine. One of them said, (talking about the bomb, and all the other terrorist attacks on the US)- why do Muslims hate Americans! That religion should be banned in the United States! I immediately said- well if they were banned from the United States, we wouldnt have the restored church today! True true, thank goodness for freedom of religion! 
 
I went to the specialist today and it turns out that I had dengue! Whoop! I am a brazilian missionary finally! But who knows when I had it, haha! He said it was pretty recent because I still had a lot of traces of it in my blood. But my health is all good, got some good medicine, and it´s all back to normal this week!
 
Speaking of which! Last week was transfers, and I forgot to say that I now have a new companion! I counted it, and she is my 8th companion! i think I am going to set a record on the mission for the most amount of companions! My companion is named Sister Maciel and she´s from Coiabá, Brazil. She was trained by Sister Cruz in Itabuna (where I stared in December part 2 of the mission ). With only 2 transfers, she already is a spiritual giant. She reminds me a lot of Mackenzie- she is always thinking of solutions in a very organized fashion, and never focusing on the problems for more time than needed. With my last two companions I definitely changed and taught in the way a Sister teaches- God loves us, lets work with the recent convers and less actives only. But the second Sister Maciel arrived its declaring the doctrine in a bold and beautiful way. I am already learning so much and loving every second of this transfer!
 
We had an investigator who told us this week that she didnt want to be baptized because no one in the branch wanted to visit her after she said she needed more time to be baptized. She said the missionaries are loving, but the members do not help any new people in the branch. 
 
So unity in the branch is what we are working on. We have already talked with the branch president, that the second someone is confirmed a member of the church they should be receiving a calling to be part of this tiny branch we have here!
 
The church is true and it is perfect! 
Peace and Blessings!
-Sister Clark

4/15/13

Dear Family!

I love all you you! Thank you so much for your prayers and thoughts! I am so grateful to have such a big loving family! 
 
This week I have been studying a lot in Matthew 7:17-20 which talks about good fruit coming from good trees and bad fruit only coming from bad trees. I was a bit confused from this, because as a member of this church we are constantly encouraged to find the good in every situation. So how can a bad tree produce good fruit: The answer is change. In Jacob 5:26-27 in this parrable, the Lord of the vineyard and his servants are changing the state of the trees (or rather the roots and branches). So all in all, what I have learned and what I am teaching from this knowledge- We can always find the light in any situation, we can change through the Atonement! 
 
We had a lesson this week that went horrible, the woman, Maria, totally brushed everything aside and we did not feel the Spirit. The next night we returned and taught the Law of Chastity and the Word of Wisdom and with a lot more preparation, and a lot of prayers before this lesson- the lesson ended up being the best lesson we had ever taught. We showed pictures of our family in front of the temple to show blessing os obedience and that families can be together forever. What a change it was to see in our investigator´s mood. At the end she said- i really enjoyed this lesson, I am really excited to stop drinking coffee and tea. She wasw so excited to follow these simple commandments that are usually a little hinderance to a lot of people before baptism! 
 
The church is true and I know it! 
Love you all! You are in my prayers and thoughts
 
Sister Clark

1.  me and my companion at the church
2.  prefeitura de ilheus - government building.



 

4/8/13

Dear Friends and Family,
 
General Conference was amazing! What a great opportunity we have to listen to the prophet´s voice! Though, there´s a catch! In Brazil, the members are only listening to the translator´s voices! It was really strange to be watching Conference in this way. Especial Elder Scott. He speaks portuguese, which I knew, so he translated his own talk (the only speaker to do this). But his portuguese is basically half potuguese half spanish with a think American accent. It was pretty funny to listen to him talking about Deus (god in portuguese) and then Dios (god in spanish)... made me question if he was talking about 2 different people. I´m not sure, all I know is I felt the Spirit, which is the most important part!
 
The other parts of conference that I loved were Elder Holland´s talk. I loved that he spoke about being firm in the faith that you already have and then seek to build that faith. Don´t be worried about the size of your faith, just seek to improve it, and live the faith that you have! And obviously I LOVED President Monson´s talk on obedience. ´The great test of this people is obedience´ How true is that! Obedienc = Peace and Truth and Happiness.
 
My absolute favorite part of Conference was hearing the phrase, ´This is my Beloved son. Hear Him.´I never thought that much that right there, the last lines of the first vision, God is inviting everyone to come unto Christ. He is stating that God and Christ are two different people, that Christ is literally His son. Such few words, but it summarized our purpose on this earth, and summarizes the purpose of sharing the gospel.
 
I know this church is true. And I know that through obedience to all the commandments of the Lord we can find happiness and not worry about the future´s trials.
 
I know that Christ lives. God is our Eternal Heavenly Father. Joseph Smith restored the priesthood, restored the church of Jesus Christ on this earth, and translated the Book of Mormon which is a second testament that Jesus is the Christ. This is Know.
 
Hope all is well, and I am praying and thinking of each and every one of you. Even you. Yes you!
Love you lots!
 
-Sister Clark


 
1. Jaciara- she´s my Becky. She reminds me of Becky in every way possible and I love it!

2. Caló- pretty much my favorite person in the whole wide world. She has the exact same personality as Merrill which cracks me up. But she´s a real go-getter and the power -house of the branch!
3. My district after watching Conference at our quasi Stake Center

4. Finally became a true brazilian! I bought havaianas- flip flops that EVERYONE here has. Its like a monopoly here!