This week Carnaval ended

Feb 23, 2015
Playing basketball with the members

Tudo bem?? Sounds like you guys have been getting a lot of snow lately. I still can’t see the edges of the driveway though in the picture. I’m surprised Dad hasn’t sent Cole out to fix that with an ice pic like the good ol days, haha.  That’s exciting that you got a referral.... we don’t even get referrals from the mission home! haha... well we do, just not all that often. 

Our district last transfer plus 2 elders from another district

This week Carnaval ended so everyone came back from vacation and the the bars stopped playing loud music and having huge parties. So this week I was thinking about how much the gospel blesses families because of the change that happened in the lives of one of the families we are teaching. They’re a family of humble circumstances and at the start it didn’t seem like they had much potential to progress. They fought a lot, weren’t married, didn’t respect each other, and seemed like they were never happy. However, step by step they began to do what we invited them to do. As they began to apply the gospel and the commandments in their lives, they began to notice a difference that it made in their family. They began to read the Book of Mormon everyday, say family prayers, go to church every week, and even self correct themselves in their smallest sins. Now the wife invites her family and neighbors to go to activities in the church, to hear the message of the restoration while we are at their house, and go to church to see for themselves that it’s the true church of Jesus Christ. Sometimes in our lives we don’t see sure proofs of the existence of God or of the Restoration of the Gospel, but in the difference the gospel has made in the life of this family, I’ve seen a sure proof that the restored gospel makes a family happy when they fully embrace it, and that God’s commandments are really for our happiness. 

So you were right about my companion. He’s from Texas. He’s been on the mission for 1 year and 6 months and has been here in Brazil for 7 months. He served 11 months in Kansas #coitado He’s a great companion, Elder McDaniel. We’re learning a lot together. 

Baptism - Elders Udy and McDaniel

This week we found a family from.... well the wife is from Portugal and he’s from Ceara... and when they went to church they loved it and seemed so happy... we haven’t talked to them yet since church, but it seems like they’re progressing a lot. 

Oh ya, there’s a member here who really wants a BYU shirt. So I told him I’d try to get him one... but actually I have no access to BYU shirts, just my family does. So if there’s any way, he would be really happy if in the next package you could send a BYU shirt as well :) 

Family with Elder Daniel and Elder Udy

Well that’s about all I got. Here it has been raining every day. I’ll send you guys some pictures of my life these days because I haven’t been sending many pictures. Have a good day and a good week. Love You guys. Tchau! Boa Samana!

Élder Udy

Lan houses closed for Carnaval

Feb 16, 2015

Hey, so I don't have any time to e-mail today because we are sharing the computer in the church between us 4 and we only have like 30 minutes left of P-day. We baptized "C" this week. I'll send pictures next week. Have no time because all the lan houses are closed because of Carnaval-_-..... but next week I'll say everything, sorry... have no time :( but have a good week! love you guys.  Boa semana!

Elder Udy

Who created the Earth?

Feb 9, 2015

Oiiii! So I thought it was funny how there’s been Dog drama on the street, haha. Hopefully Bandit can manage (the neighbor’s dog passed away)... maybe you guys can buy another bird dog to be his friend haha. So this week I’m going to get a new companion, Élder McDaniel... which is funny cuz my current companion is Élder Daniel haha. So Elder McDaniel will get here tomorrow... it seems like I don’t know any of the missionaries in the mission anymore... just the missionaries that have more time than me on the mission, but I’m sure he’ll be a good companion. 

So this week was good. The lady we found last week with the inspired tracting will be baptized this Saturday, and the couple that got married is going to be baptized on the 6th of March... I can't remember if I said that last week or not. But things are going pretty good here in the area. We’re finding new families to teach, so I’m sure my new companion will like it here. 

Maybe since the ward leadership is going to be reorganized.. I mean the branch... Dad will be the new Ward Mission Leader... or maybe not since Brother Karl is already the Ward mission leader, but I hope the branch is treating the missionaries well. I always thought that all the wards in the US were like ours.. where the missionaries only have lots of meals during the week if they are lucky... but all the American missionaries I know here say in their wards back home the missionaries eat every day haha... so hopefully the Slippery Rock missionaries aren’t going to sleep hungry, haha. 

This week we also learned about agency at church in the gospel principles class. Last week we learned about the creation... but it didn’t go so well. The teacher was teaching about the creation and she stopped to ask the class a question, "Who created the Earth??" and Elder Daniel raised his hand and said "Jesus Christ" .. and  I was sitting there thinking "isso aí... eis aqui meu companheiro" and all of a sudden one of the recent converts on the other side of the room said with certainty and conviction "Nooooo, it was Heavenly Father"... and all of a sudden other recent converts started to join in.. "Im pretty sure it was God" and another one "In Genesis 1:1 it says that GOD is the creator" ..... so it turned into a Bible Bash haha. So our ward mission leader started to read John 1:1-3,14 that talks about Jesus and how he is... I think in English it says the Word...,14?lang=eng and another scripture from 3 Nephi 9:15 that says how Jesus Christ created’s pretty funny looking back on it, but it ended well. Well at least, for most of us... some of the people continued with doubts, but we talked to them afterwards. 

Well, that’s about all I got for this week. I hope you guys have a good week... is the Slippery Rock high school basketball team going to the playoffs??? Have a good week! Love you Guys. 

-Élder Udy

He desires to bless us, if we just have faith in Him

Feb 2, 2015

Hey, so this week was pretty good. Sounds like everything’s goin good in good ol PA. I can’t believe Dad finally got released. I think he´ll be stake young men’s president... but I don’t really know much about what’s going on in the stake so who knows. Sounds like the missionaries are eating well.... well kind of, haha. (We fed them oysters) I can’t believe dad bought 100 oysters. Sounds like he had a good birthday. Looking at the pictures from the snow storm makes me miss the cold. I remember everyone in PA always complains about the cold.... and everyone here always complains about the hot, haha. I guess it’s better to just be grateful for what you have. 

It’s kinda weird here in Brazil during the Super Bowl because most people here have never even watched football in their lives and definitely no one watches the Super Bowl.. at least not that I’ve heard of. I’m still waiting for the day that the Chargers manage to make it past the first round of the playoffs. 

So this week was pretty good. We had a lot happen. So the marriage ended up working out. Our Ward Mission Leader went with them to the building where you schedule marriages with the Relief Society President, and the marriage and baptism will be here in the church on March 6th.. so in about a month. So everyone’s pretty excited for them. They said if Elder Daniel is transferred they’re going to call the mission president to send him back so he can baptize them with me, haha. 

Also this week we baptized one of the cousins of a returned missionary that came back from the mission the day I got here in this ward. He’s been trying to encourage everyone in his family and extended family to get baptized, but for now it is just been his cousin.. or neice.

So this week we decided to try to seek more inspiration. We decided there has to be a better way to go about finding new investigators that are ready to hear and accept the gospel. So we decided to use that technique, that I think I wrote to you guys about once. It goes like this. We choose 1 or 2 hours (preferably at night when more people are home) to devote to finding investigators. Then we pray, asking for forgiveness of our weaknesses and telling God that we will look for new investigators during these 2 hours, and we tell Him who we want to find (an investigator that will be baptized this month, a family that will be baptized, etc.) and we ask Him for inspiration in finding them. So after the prayer, one companion continues praying (for the other companion, so he can receive needed revelation) while the other looks at the area map and chooses 10 roads under inspiration. Afterwards the missionaries offer a prayer of thanks and ask for more inspiration as they look at these 10 roads and individually choose 5. Remembering to always keep our goal in mind of who we want to find (a family, investigator that will accept baptism, etc...). After both the missionaries choose 5 roads, they compare them, and the roads that are the same are the roads that God revealed and are the roads where we need to go to find the family or investigator. Then we end with another prayer of thanks.

So this week we did this a couple of times and on Monday (2nd time we used this technique) we found a lady that seemed like a normal contact and we marked a visit in her house another day. So when we we able to teach her on Thursday, she accepted everything we said about baptism and the restored gospel, and when we returned the next day she had read the restoration pamphlet and and she said she would be at church on Sunday. So when we got to church on Sunday she was already there... actually she arrived before any of the members did (Mormon time exists in Brazil too. I think only the bishopric was there having their meeting) but she waited for people to get there.... so after we introduced her to the Relief Society President and she loved church. When we went back to her house Sunday afternoon, she said she had loved church, and she had decided that she wanted to be a member of the church and she’ll be baptized in a couple weeks. 

So if we found someone like this, I know it’s because God inspired us to go in that road where she would be. We passed 4 weeks not finding anyone that progressed and then we asked God, looking for inspiration and he led us to someone in just 2 days. He really hears our prayers and He desires to bless us if we just have faith in him. But we need to have faith to ask and act. Like it says in Ether 12:12 God can’t work miracles if we do not have faith, and faith includes asking and acting. 

So we hope that this next week will be even better, finding and inviting more people to learn about the restored gospel and to be baptized. I hope you guys have a good week.  Have a good week and enjoy the snow. Love you guys.  Seu Filho, 

Élder Udy