Thursday, May 29, 2014

Bon diaaaaaaaaaaaaaa familia!!!

Date: May 28, 2014 7:58 AM
Subject: bon diaaaaaaaa familia!!!

Oi familia!!!

This week is kerrrrrrazy!!!   We left Sunday for a meeting for leaders in Teresina.  We were there allllll Monday for the meeting, left Tuesday morning and didn’t return until Tuesday afternoon. We were both sick. haha.  I don’t know what happened but Sister Beus and I were really sick --stomach sick – on Sunday so the 5 hour bus ride to Teresinawas miserable.  So … that was fun but, yes, the meeting was sooo worth it.  There is sooooooooo much to learn and not enough brain space!!  ahhh!!  But now we’re back and have a full day to work tomorrow, and on Friday we have another meeting for our zone -- almost the entire day in Sobral.......  More traveling.  Aaaaagh.  haha.  I dislike car rides in general, but here it’s even worse with either no A/C or too much A/C.   Then we have the bumpy and winding roads and everything.  Remember the road to Hana on Maui?   Yeah, that was nothing.  hahaha.  Contacts on the bus are the devil..... but it’s worth it right:?  That’s what they tell me. haha

jk.  Even with all that, I love it.  Brasil is awesome!!

This week really is really great.  Muuuuuuuuuuuch revelation! and milagres!!!!!  [miracles]

We have so many less actives coming back to church!  I’m soooooo excted!!  We have a huuuuge emphasis here -- 50% emphasis -- on less actives.  I’m not sure if I told you the promise we received from a prophet, but he promised that if we focus 50% on less actives here, we will double in baptisms.  Retention is the key!  Seriously, it is.  It doesn’t make a difference if we are baptizing everyone if they don’t really believe enough to stay active and firm in the gospel -- not just the church, but in the gospel.   So we’re working a lot with them.  Ahhh!  I don’t have time to share everything but I will write about one couple—Larissa and Daniel.  They are coming back to church and are sooooooooo amazing.  I love them and they’re getting married in July.  I think I told you already, but I’m just suuper happy, because they came to church this past Sunday and loved it.   Everyone loved them, too, and it was awesome. 

Other miracles:  Felipe and Roberto are friends who work for one of our members.  This member went to the temple (24hours away) and there he received personal revelation about his workers. He said he saw Felipe and knew that he would receive the gospel--woahhhhhh.  So he invited them to church and they accepted the invitation and they came and loved it!!!  We are teaching them, now.   They are 23 and 20 yrs old and suuuper awesome and fun and cool.  They’re just really great and we were teaching them and found out that Felipe’s girlfriend, years ago, went to church for like 2 years but never was baptized because her parents wouldn’t let her.  Now they’re coming back to church and everything.   Amazing.  I know it’s not a coincidence.  I’m sooo excited for them.

I have no time, again.  President might change the rule again so we have less time buuuuuut we’ll see.  I hope not.   I won’t be able to read any eamails ^( 
I want to share a talk I read -- I looooooove general conference talks wow.  This is from the Liahona dad sent me a long time ago -- thank you sooo much.   BTW, I loooooove this magazine.  May 2013.  Obedience to the Law is Liberty by Elder L. Tom Perry.  Suuuuuper powerful.  I have almost everything marked up so I don’t remember what I wanted to share but I just want to say how incredibly important it is to understand the Adversary and his plan. It is important to know that we are  here to help others remember that truly, the world has changed, but God never does.  My favorite quote:  “Indeed our heaven is little more than a projection of our homes into Eternity.”

I am sooo incredibly blessed to have our family.  I know that not everyone has such a blessing, but I know that we have the power to create this kind of great family with our own families in the future.  I want my heaven to be how my family is when are all together and I want my future family to have that same blessing -- to always want to come home and be together and to look forward to when the family is together for FHE.  Truly, THIS is our heaven. 

Sei que este evangelho e realemente o evangelho de Cristo completo aqui na terra. Sei que  Joseph Smith viu Deus e Cristo e foi chamado por eles  restaurar este evangelho na terra para todos de nos. sei que esta igreja, a igeja de JEsus Cristo dos santos dos Ultimos Dias e a unica igreja completamente verdadeira na face da terra, que significa e a unica igreja com todas as chaves e autorizacao de Deus para fazer a obra Dele. Sei que o Livro de Mormon e a palavra de Deus e junto com a Biblia podemos saber com certeza o que temos que fazer para voltar a presenca Dele e viver com nossas familias para sempre com Deus. Sei que tudo mundo pode receber este mesmos certeza por meio de oracao  e  o Espirito Santo. Isso e meu testemunho em nome de Jesus Cristo, Amen.

[I know that this gospel is the complete gospel of Jesus Christ here on Earth.  I know that Joseph Smith saw God and Christ and was called by them restore this gospel on earth for all of us. I know this church, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is the only true and complete church on earth.  That means this is the only church with all keys and authorization from God to do His work.  I know the Book of Mormon is the word of God and together with the Bible, we can know with sureness what we have to do to return to His presence and live with our families forever with God.  I know that all the world can receive this same certainty through prayer and the Holy Spirit. That is my testimony in the name of Jesus Christ, Amen.]

-Sister Yoshimoto

photos: in Brasil, EVERYONE needs the gospel! 

Saturday, May 24, 2014

Trying New and Exciting Things

March 21, 2014

Oi Familia!

ahhhh! I’m terrible with time! I don’t have a lot for this big email but I got the emails out to everyone else hahaha.

Time flies on preparation day. Sigh.

This week was pretty interesting! It flew by.. seriously! I don’t even remember what happened!

Oh!  Yes, miracles.  We finally are getting trainings in district meeting again so I’m suuuuper stoked.  I am able to understand almost everything and I am loving the people!!!

No time this week but I will sum it up:

A couple, ages 17 and 20, are both inactive, but planning on getting married July 24!  We’re working with them making goals for their future family/present family--living together … and they made the goals of family prayer and scripture study and FHE!!!!!  They want to get married by the bishop at the church because it’ll be more special -- I think their goal is the temple, Though they won’t admit it yet. YAYAYYAYA and they were talking about planning on coming to church this week.  We overheard them and I’m SUUUUER EXCITEDD!!!!  I can’t wait for their wedding.  They are soooo amazing and super sweet and ashdfkjsldkfj I love them.  I might make a bouquet of origami flowers for their wedding hahahah!  But we’ll see what colors. :) Thanks for the origami paper mom and dad!!!  Very useful haha.

We have other investigators who were pretty weak at first but now are accepting dates for baptism and working towards coming to church with their families!

The less actives in our area are all so excited now!

We started a YSA class and everyone is suuuuper excited!!  We have soooo many less active YSA.  This is going to be a miracle worker!!

We are also going to have a talent show and us 4 sisters will be performing Joseph’s first prayer accapella -- 4 sisters, 4 parts.  It sounds suuuuuper good haha!  I’m excited!

We’re actually going to try something different with it, too...  I’ll update next week how it goes. We’re going to sing in the park and try to find new investigators like this -- was a random idea but I think it will work here and the sisters are excited soooo we’ll see!!!

We’ll be starting an English class soon too!  Tonnnns of people are excited for it, but it’s a first time trial, then after they have to bring non-member friends and we’ll teach I Am a Child of God and stuff like that but with the basics of English.  It’ll be interesting because we can all speak English PRETTY well haha, but now we’ll see how good we are at teaching it!  haha

Soooo overall, I’m suuuuper excited for this area!!

Sorry about the scriptures!  It was actually Isaiah 49!

Well, I loooooove you all sooooo much and am soo incredibly blessed to have this opportunity to serve the Lord.  We try to explain to people who ask -- the remuneration of our mission. It’s hard to explain that we’re not paid,  We are actually paying to do this.  The schedule is rigorous and if I were doing this for myself, I wouldn’t be here haha.  But honestly, I can never never NEVER thank Heavenly Father enough for allowing me to be here at this time.  I know with all my heart that this mission has saved my life.  I am so happy and so hopeful for my future, for the future of my family, because of what I’m able to learn here.  Still, it is soooo hard and frustrating but I am so grateful for the opportunity I have to serve those here, to bear testimony, to SEE the conversion of others as they discover the truth for themselves.  I know with all my heart that this is the only true complete church of Jesus Christ on the Earth and that through the Book of Mormon everyone -- literally EVERYONE can KNOW for themselves from God of this truth. I know that Joseph Smith saw God the Father and Jesus Christ, because of one humble, sincere prayer of faith.  I love this gospel.  The hope and peace and true happiness it brings me, and everyone who accepts it, is beyond description.  Thank you for raising me in this gospel!  I love you allllll.  Your examples mean the world to me.

Muiiiiito Amor,
Sister Yoshimoto<3333

P.S.  Please send my love to Grandma!

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

I am so grateful!

Oi Familiiiiiiaaa!!!!!

Wow I can’t believe it’s already been mother’s day and past!  Wow my English is terrible.  Sorry.

It was super nice to see you all again!!! :)  I’m bummed I couldn’t talk with everyone that I wanted to!  You can never really trust technology here.  But it’s okay.  I will see you all soon enough haha. <3

I wrote some things on the alpha smart but it’s not working and now I’m worried.... :(  I wrote to Trav and Cami and Emily and everybodddyyyyyy sighh.  You’ll all have to wait until next week I guess.  Sigh… sorry.

But this computer as well is super slow. I don’t know why but it’s always the computer I get that’s having issues haha.  Oh well.  I will have to keep it short today. 

This week was amaaaazing!!  I wish I could skype this week instead because the miracles are incredible!  This mission is very focused on families and less active members because we have manyyyyy.  And it’s super great.  It’s really tough sometimes because this mission has a lot of strange experimental things that it’s hard to have faith in but this week I decided I’m going to stop doubting and just follow what I’m told -- this is after all what I’ve been learning the whole time in the States, right?

Then, I made some goals personally and with my companion and the day after district meeting where we made a day for a district fast for families and exact obedience, we found 2 new families.  One of them is completely 100% elite! Wow!  It was amazing!

It was a reference from a member that we could never never contact.  We met once outside and talked a little and she said “Wow, you know, we went to church a long time ago, 8 years ago and really liked it, but life got in the way and never made it back.  Just last night, my husband and I were talking about going back, and here you are"!

It was soooo coool so we marked a time to return but they weren’t there -- birthday or something.  So we came back again and he was there but she wasn’t so we couldn’t enter.  Then finally this past Monday, we came back and they were all there.  We were so excited!  Finally! But when we got to talking …  Wow.... I still can’t believe it....

We were just talking and getting to know them better, (Miracle I could understand almost everything – they’re suuuuper awesome … so down to earth ) and then they mentioned the last time they had missionaries here.  We were like woah! cool! elders: and they said yeah, they were super close, came over 4 times a week and they had food and talked and took the lessons. and he said one of the last times they came over, one elder made a promise.  He said: Paulo, Eulaine, if you pray tonight, truly pray and ask God if this church is truly the church of Jesus Christ restored again on the earth, I proimise in the name of Jesus Christ that you will have a dream tonight confirming the truth. ....

Woah, right???
but even better.... they did.  That night they BOTH had the EXACT same dream about 3 Nephi 11 when Christ comes down and is blessing the people and talks with them and all that.  Wow.... amazing … and they woke up and both had the same dream and talked about it and boom... Wow.  I can’t even explain it ...  But they said that soon after the missionaries were transferred, they moved houses, and life got in the way.  They never went back.
We asked if they believed the church was true still and they said == without a doubt.  “We know the church is true.”  Wow.  It was soooo powerful!!!!!

We wanted to jump out of our chairs and run around but we contained it … haha.  It was soooo incredible... but anyway, we are meeting with them and everything is so sooo incredibly amazing.  I always think about the missionary I became in Vegas, the person I became because of all the amazing investigators, families, members, I had the privilege of meeting, and how every single person I met has helped prepare me for the people here. This family reminds me of the Jacksons in Calico Ridge, remember them?  Also the Staffords and the Allens!  So prepared by the Lord, so open and humble and ready to accept the gospel.  They were so happy and ready for the something more. Those families who are completely open and loving and literally, I was  there doing nothing and they’re already ready. haha.  It’s like that again.  Where I’m seriously learning more from them than I’m teaching.  It’s the best :) 

It’s the most amazing blessing of a mission.  Knowing that no matter what, I will never be able to give back as much as I’m getting.  Knowing that I will never forget the people I’ve met and the huge incredible impact they’ve already made in my life. 

I’m sooo grateful!  What an amazing gift this mission is.  And I’m sooooooo excited for the future missionaries. Wow!! 

I don’t have time and I feel really bad because I had a buuuunch of emails ready for you all and it’s not coming out of the alpha smart :((  sorry....... but I want to leave some of my favorite scriptures ever that really helped me and still help me every day:
Doctrine and Covenants 50:40-41 … I think please check first haha.

Love you alll soooooo much!!!<333333
ate proximo Quarta!!!  [Until next Wednesday]

-Sister Yoshimoto

Doctrine and Covenants 50:40-41
 40 Behold, ye are little children and ye cannot bear all things now; ye must grow in grace and in the knowledge of the truth.
 41 Fear not, little children, for you are mine, and I have overcome the world, and you are of them that my Father hath given me;
Isaiah 4:15-16

Thursday, May 8, 2014

Teaching Simply

Oi Familia!

Wednesday PDAY!!  So weird that it's on Wednesday now.  There are so many experimental changes in the mission haha. I feel like a real guinea pig.  Buttttttt I won’t complain because man, it must be suuuuuper stressful for the president.

But before I get off topic and forget, again, HAPPY BIRTHDAY EMILYYYYY!!!! I'm super excited and sad and mind blown that you are 18.... Scary. Mostly because you're old. and secondly because that means I'm old, too. hahaha.  Super weird.   I realized that I will be 21 in July.  My entire 20th year of my life will have been away from home on a mission.  How strange.  But kinda cool. haha.  I sent a letter/"presents" for Birthday and Mothers day and Father's day hahaha.  Don't get excited.  It’s super lame. but I really can't send anything from here and we don't have time really to get stuff.. :( But I will bring home presents :D they got some coooooool stuff here!!! and incredibly cheap haha.  Sooo my last month here, I will throw out all my worn out mission clothes and return with one outfit and the rest, souvenirs. haha jk. I won't. but anyway,  I'm super distracted.  I hope your birthday was great!!!!!  You can now officially buy light dry ice! and go to big kid prison. :D Congrats! hehe. 

This week, we taught Irisma again, the one who had the crazy dream of Joseph Smith, and we were on divisions--splits with the young women.  I was with Laura.  She is seriously the BEST!! amazing missionary.  She is 16 but her story is amazing. Such a strong testimony. Her sister was baptized and later she started investigating. She had really bad depression and anxiety so church and talking to people was really hard for her.  But through prayer and scriptures and with the help of the ward, she overcame it all and is one of the most amazing ward missionaries!! 
She talks to EVERYone about the gospel and invites everyone, even just people on the street!! and she bares testimony all the time and basically, literally, is a sister missionary already. It's amazing. and she helps so much with the language. haha. I'm praying she will get called to serve in our ward ;D

Anyway, she and I were teaching Irisma and while she saved me many times in the lesson, I basically was teaching myself and it was really scary. buuuut I did it and it was awesome!  I could understand almost everything, but the words I wanted to say were really jumbled haha. sighh.  It's really frustrating when I want to say something but can't cause I don't know how. butttt I definitely think this is teaching me to teach much more simply and talk more slowly and with power.  I really have to think about what is most important in what I want to say.  I learned on my mission that missionaries talk wayyyy too much.  It's hard to slow down and let the Spirit talk, too -- which is the most imporatant part -- but here, I'm learning quickly that I need to talk as fast as these investigators (just understand them) but I just need to say what's most important, praying that the Spirit will cover the grammar/accent problems haha.  But I know with time and hard work I will be able to get to the point where they will be able to focus more on what I'm saying rather than how I'm saying it, as it says in PMG. 

Transfers ended this Monday... We didn't even know haha, because apparently in Brasil, all the missions have one transfer with only 5 weeks -- no idea why but they do.  And thank GOODNESS we're all staying. I was seriously super nervous that Sister Ped would leave and I'd have to lead the area that has no accurate map and I can't understand directions really well hahaha.  But it's all good.  Phew.  But I know that this is her last transfer here so I gotta learn everything in the next 6 weeks. But no worries.  I know it'll all work out..  I was praying for oneee more transfer with her, because I know how hard it'll be without her, but then I stopped and realized what I'd been learning the last 10 months in the US.  He knows way better what I need, so if whatever happens, I can trust that He won't just throw me in a hole and leave. Wow, it's really amazing how much less stress it is when you can really trust the Lord.  Especially in missionary work because sometimes -- or all the time -- it's realllyyyy super dang hard. but knowing -- not just believing -- really knowing that He's there constantly aware of my situation and needs, and that He loves me enough to give me the challenges I need, is probably one of the biggest blessings from this experience of visa waiting.  This knowledge really helps me here in Brasil. 

One missionary who arrived here with me, starting this tranfer, is District Leader.  His trainer is leaving his area, and he's training an american visa waiter.... HAHAHHA OMG.  I seriously thought they were joking but omg.... he's a really good missionary so he can handle it.  He's stressed and probably scared to death, but I know he can handle it. but I was like PHEEWPH! THANK GOODNESS the Lord doesnt trust me THAT much hahahhaha! jk but seriously.... my heart stopped when I realized that was possible!!! ahhhahldfjlsd. I would die hahah. 

ALSO, Sis Nilson has her VISA! WOOOOHOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOHOHOHOHOHOOO.   She is coming this next transfer to the MTC and then here!!!! I am SOO excited for her.  She was pretty distraught about me leaving her :( but, it's the pattern of things -- she arrived at the MTC a few hours late, arrived to the field a week after me,   and now to Brasil a transfer after me haha.  We were joking about that but now it's legit! lol.  Soooo happpyyy!!! :DDD

 OKAY, so  literally in like 3 days I can skype home!  What!! Crazy!  I can't believe it’s here already!!  This is the last time I can call home before I GO home..........  
but anyway.. the time difference here is really annoying, because we have appointments and stuff but you have church and I dont know what time so i'm PRAYING it's not at 1, becauseeeee we can skype at 6pm here, aka 2 there.  But if you do have church at 1 maybe we can skype earlier. idk. 

But we planned it for 6pm here, 2 pm there.  Hope it works!!!!! 

My computer is psycho so its probably way out of order.... sorry... but I saw the pics of Emily!!!!!  Suuuuuper prettyyy!!! :)))   You’re sooo grown up hehe.  I will answer any questions about this email Sunday..  I can’t fix anything ugh. 

But ahh remind me about Kevin Sunday!  Soooooo coooool1!!! 

ps. Happy anniversary  Cami and Jeremy and Happy birthday, Grant !!!!   =)))
Love you alllllll.  Talk to you on Sunday!!