Monday, June 24, 2013


AHHH HE REALLY IS AND HE REALLY DOES ANSWER OUR PRAYERS!!!! Last night was the special little phone call that said where we are going slash if we`re moving areas slash who are companion is going to be--aka our life for the next 6 weeks. So, I may or may not have been praying SO hard all week that the Lord would give me strength to do whatever He had in store for me THIS next transfer. If it was 6 more weeks of the same, so be it and I could do it, because I already did it once, and it would be incredibly difficult, and I`d probably cry a lot more, but there is silver lining in everything....right? And if I were to move again or get a new comp, that it would be what the Lord wanted for me, and I would have learned whatever it was that I needed to learn, and I could move on to my next challenge. WELL. DOCTRINE AND COVENANTS 29:6 IS REAL, BECAUSE HEAVENLY FATHER HEARD ALL YOUR PRAYERS AND MY PRAYERS, AND TODAY IT`S JUST ME SISTER LOFGREEN AND SISTER CALL!!!! Sister Rojo got transferred to Porto, and I am patiently waiting, (are you ready for this?) to go pick up my GREENIE tomorrow night from Lisbon. I`M SORRY WHAT?!? YEAH. I AM TRAINING. This is not real life. I JUST finished MY training. I don`t know anything. This is so much responsibility. I can`t just smile and laugh when people say something to me and I don`t understand it. I actually have to understand it. YIKES. Here`s to hoping our appointments don`t fall through. And that I can be half as amazing as Sister Barlow was. Seriously, WHAT? Also, lets see just how precisely the Lord answers our prayers, because I may or may not have asked for us to be the best of friends and just love each other so much that we`re so happy all the time. So....maybe I`m a little selfish sometimes, but I mean...come on. Hahaha

But I AM SO HAPPY!! I FEEL SO HAPPY!!! And I feel like nothing is going to stop this work! We are just going to have SO much faith and just rely on the Lord for EVERYTHING and it is going to be the best transfer ever! Seriously. It`s unreal. I am SO happy and SO excited again! And its just the best feeling in the world. I am SO stressed about training, but I know I had this experience for a reason--to show me just how important it is to be obedient and diligent and to just work hard, and now we can do everything right and be exactly obedient and rely on the Lord for everything and let Him make us into what He needs us to be and we`re gonna see lots of miracles, and I am SO excited!!!

So, this week is going to be all sorts of CRAZY, because right now I am in a trio with Sister Lofgreen and Sister Call, and then I have to go to Lisbon, and then have a training meeting and then meet my new companion and then we`ll come back to Viseu, and then Familia Santos is marked for baptism (!!!! SO EXCITED ABOUT THEM!! They are SO prepared. It`s actually unreal.), so I have to make sure that they get all the lessons and have the interviews and everything is good and ready and set, because I have no idea when we`re getting back and AH. SO MUCH RESPONSIBILITY. But, I`d rather this kind of stress. Real missionary work stress. I am just SO excited to just focus on the work and be diligent and work our hardest and just RUUNNN. Oh, I am so, so, SO excited. And so happy. This morning, there was lots of hymn singing and lots of smiling and life is SO good over here, because God is SO good!!!




Speaking of how Heavenly Father answers prayers, yesterday we were waiting at church for Familia Santos to show up, and it had already started and they weren`t there yet, so we went outside to wait for them for a second/just make sure that hadn`t shown up yet, and were in the wrong room or something (We have Relief Society and Gospel Principles first, and then Sacrament--surprisingly makes things a little difficult.) Anyways. They hadn`t showed up, and they can`t get baptized if they aren`t at church, because ya know--gotta follow the commandments--and I was getting so nervous, but I just said, No. WE HAVE FAITH. And according to our faith, we will receive. So I said a little prayer in my heart that my faith for be sufficient for the both of us and that they would should up and that they would be able to make it to all the meetings and get to know the members better and that everything would go as planned, and SECONDS LATER, THEY SHOWED UP!!!! AHH GOD IS SOOOO GOOD!!!

Family. Friends. People I don`t know. I love you all! Seriously. I have a heart full of love for you. (Cue Les Mis) But really, it`s true. I know that Heavenly Father loves each and every one of us. He knows us better than we know ourselves. He knows us better than our friends or our family or even our dogs (.....Dad). He listens to our prayers, and he answers each of them individually according to what is best for us. He knows our thoughts and our feelings and He is ALWAYS there for us. I know that through Him and Jesus Christ, we can do all things. I know that all things that are good come from God. I know that when we have faith and rely on the Lord, we will always be directed in the right path. I am SO happy, because I know this, and I know that we can all pray to feel the love of God in our lives every single day.

K welp. That`s my missionary moment. Oh yeah. I gave a talk in church yesterday. HAHAH. I speak Portuguese? Gotta go to the mall cause we`re going bowling as a District......hahahah. LOVE YOU SO MUCH BYEEEEE!!!

P.S. Shannan---I ate a cake made out of spinach this week and it was good. Make it. Erin--you too. 

PPS. Dad--Toze and his family have a helicopter too!! I died of laughter seeing the 8 year old son and father fighting over whose turn it was---reminded me of you and Uncle George and Brenner. Hahaha. ALSO. We made cookies with them this week, and OH MY GOODNESS I saw a whole family taste cookie dough for the first time in their life/learn the process of making cookies, and my whole world was turned upside down slash I have never been happier! It`s really such a shame it`s taken them this long to get to have this experience, but I`m more than glad I could be the ones to help them see how much more beautiful the world is with Bolachas Americanas. Hahahah--the Gospel and Chocolate Chip Cookies are basically the same thing...yeah? hahaha I LOVE YOU MORE THAN I LOVE COOKIES.

Sister B

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Lane and Mrs. Kim.

HAPPY FATHER`S DAY DADDY!!!! Ah, I am SO sad I couldn't be there with you to celebrate. I would have LOVED to have been there. I was just talking to the other sisters the other day about how wouldn't it be nice if I could just go home for a weekend, say I love you, and then come back? You’re the best dad in the whole world, and I love you so much. And know that if I could, I`d be there in a second. Sorry I couldn't make you lobsters again, but I hope Noah stepped up to the task for you. 


This week has been....interesting. I actually don`t even know what to say or where to start or end, because I really don`t feel like I have anything to say. I`ve thought about getting hit by a car at least 12 times a day this week. Okay, so fine. That`s dramatic. BUT, sometimes we`re walking around for hours, and I have no idea what to do. Sister Call says that sometimes when she`s walking around, she watches Hercules in her head, so I might start doing that too. 

Highlights of this week, after a realllyyy long day, we walked outside, and Celine was playing. "She lifts us up. She brings it down. It`s like the most powerful thing I`ve ever seen." And, I knew....near, far, wherever you are. Yeah, anyways. I love you guys. And I love Celine. 

That family that I told you about last week is incredible! The other night, we went over to their house with the Bishop and his wife to teach about the Plan of Salvation. I love seeing how much sense it makes to people. Because it does! It makes perfect sense! They accepted the invitation to be baptized in two weeks, and what do you know! Their son is turning 8 this week! YAY! I am so excited to be teaching a family, because that`s always the goal, and it`s so much greater to see whole families coming closer to Christ. Then they made us dinner and my companion may or may not have had to eat chicken blood. Hahahah. Oh, the joys of not eating meat and just being fed soup and bread :)  

Also, in an effort to get one of our investigators to come to church with us, we did a church swap. We went to her church, and she came to ours. Well...guess what church she belongs to? Seventh Day Adventist. Hahahah I could not stop thinking about Lane and Mrs. Kim and Gilmore Girls and how crazy they always made it out to be. It wasn`t that weird, but I may or may not have fallen asleep. Oops. It`s okay though, because I`m pretty sure she fell asleep when she was at church with

Other than that, it was a really long week. With not a lot of success. And not a lot of laughter. I`ve been trying to be happy and excited and feel like the Lord knows what I`m going through. And I know he does, because I know he knows all of our weaknesses and all of our pains and afflictions, and if we are patient, he will strengthen us and lift us up. But sometimes, it just seems really, really far away. I`m trying to focus on the work. And it`s not even the work that`s getting me down--that`s the worst part. But it`s just hard. Most of the time, it`s trying to figure out the balance in who to please. And I think the keeping my mouth shut for the past few weeks is starting to build up and now I think my head my explode one of these days. But, I know the Lord loves me. And I know He loves every single one of us. And I know that He knows what we are going through and what we are experiencing, and as long as we keep working hard and do our part, He will lift us up and free us of our burdens. I`m just so grateful that I know that. And I`m so grateful that I can always fall back on that at the end of every long day.

Well, that`s all I`ve got for this week. I`m sorry. I wish I had more to say, but I don`t. I just have a lot of love for you all. I`m going to play Ping Pong with our District for District P-Day so...hahahah. This should be funny. And to think, I grew up with a ping pong table in our basement. To be fair...the net was always broken. ANYWAYS. I love you all. So so so much. You`re all perfect. And sorry I haven`t been better about writing letters. I`ve been spending all my free time this transfer drowning my sorrows in cookie dough. Oops. But that doesn`t mean that I don`t love you and think about you all the time! Because I do!! I LOVE YOU SO!!!

Sister Brooks

ps. it`s 7 months til my birthday today, so....start planning on how you´re going to get milk bar over here Kris. 

Sister Call

Friday, June 14, 2013

"Isnt it funny when you are the bus?" Sister Lofgreen

So, there`s all these times, when people don`t want to talk to us, but they`ll point to other people, or their friends will walk by, or they show us other doors where people live, and then they`ll tell us to go talk to them. It`s like they`re throwing them under the bus. But...we`re the bus. Sorry about it. 

Also, apparently Sister Call, Sister Lofgreen and I were all talking to each other in Portuguese in our sleep last night...hahaha oops. I just cant get enough of them. And, I guess that means I`m dreaming in Portuguese now? Fixe. (Cool.)

Ah...what a week. So, our goal this week as a District has been to get people to come to church, so they can really feel the Spirit there and because I have never realized how much more we can learn in church than on our own since I`ve been here. (Oops.. maybe I should`ve been paying attention better all those years. Sorryyy.) Anyways, we had a district meeting last week and we did a practice and the Zone Leader taught Sister Lofgreen and I, and we were supposed to say no the first time he invited us to church, but I literally could not, because he was so incredibly amazing at it and I WANTED to go to church with him. It was unreal. Then when we were supposed to be giving feedback, Sister Lofgreen and I started crying. (Yeah, apparently I`m that Sister missionary that cries now. Cool.) But literally, the Spirit was just so strong, and his testimony was so powerful, and I just wish SO badly that I could just know everything and be able to teach with that kind of power. And I just always want to be doing more and working harder and helping people understand how important all of this is. Anyways. Maybe my drive is going to cause my companion to murder me, but gotta do what I gotta do.

Anyways. So, all week, we were talking to as many people as we could and trying to commit all of them to come to church with us, and we were seeing a LOT of miracles. It was excellent, and we were so excited, because on Saturday night, we were going to have FIVE investigators at church. Well...then Sunday morning came, one wanted to answer their phones and no one was where they said they`d meet us. But we did our part, and we were there, and oh my heart just about broke. I said a little prayer as we were walking to church, and I just said, `Heavenly Father, please let someone show up at church and let them feel your Spirit there.` And GOD ANSWERS PRAYERS, BECAUSE HE IS SO INCREDIBLE!! First off, one of our investigators, Jose, had all these questions the night before about Joseph Smith and The Book of Mormon, and then GUESS WHAT THE TWO TALKS IN SACRAMENT MEETING WERE ON?! Yeah. One was on Joseph Smith and the other on The Book of Mormon. I die. Secondly, there are two wards that meet in our building, and in between classes, when everyone was moving around, this man from the other ward comes up to me and introduces us to this family and says, `We have this family and their neighbor for you to teach. They were just in church with us, and they came to our ward last week too. Let`s have a Family Night in our house tomorrow night.` WE HAVE A FAMILY TO TEACH! And then! Last night (at the family night), the neighbor, Maria, said that she felt God sitting by her side when she was at church, and that the feeling was so strong that it is something she won`t ever be able to forget. They are INCREDIBLE. AH GOD IS SO GOOD!!! And as long as we are obedient and doing our part, he will ALWAYS answer our prayers. Even when it isn`t at all how we thought they were going to be answered. 

Also, when we invited someone to church this week, they asked what time, and we told them it was from 9-12. He responded saying, `Is there was going to be a picnic  because I can`t go that long without eating.` hahahah, he`s not alone. 

This week, I`ve been focusing a lot on learning about the strengthening power of the Atonement. Everyone talks about the purifying power, but I read a talk by Elder Bednar about focusing on the strengthening power and how it helped Alma and Nephi and when we ask to have forces to help our situation instead of asking for our situation to change, the Lord blesses us with that strength and power. And OH MY GOODNESS DOES IT WORK!! I have been amazed with myself this week. With the patience and love and my ability to just do my best and rely on the Lord, because seriously, it all comes from him. These are not my attributes  I can promise you that. But through the Lord, He can make our weaknesses strong, and He knows how we can have forces to make it through our situations.

Speaking of, Sister Wilde came back to do divisions with the other Sisters, and we went on a little `split` and went on a walk together in the morning to have a `counseling.` She is incredible. She just told me that the Lord has so much faith in me and that President has so much faith in me that is why I am in this situation. So, obviously, my first thought was....well.... isn`t that a annoying. Hahah, but then I thought that I have so much to learn from every situation that I am put in and the Lord never gives us a trial that He isn`t willing to help us through, because He loves us so much, and He knows us SO much better than we know ourselves, and He knows what we can and cannot handle. And through Him, we can do everything.

In other news, I can`t stop thinking about you guys and how much I love you and I think I have said it about 1200 times this week, but it`s true. Also, I swear you are all here with me. Like, I`ll be thinking about Kelli and how I miss you and then we call an investigator, and his ringback tone is One Direction and later on in the week, I`m thinking about you again, and we walk by this store and a One Direction concert is playing on the tv. guys are always with me. Even if it`s in the strangest of ways. Hahaha, but seriously, I love you all SO much. You are the greatest and I am so so so grateful to have you as my examples. Sorry to make you wait a whole other day, but look at it this way--Only 6 more days til the next one!!! :) :) (Yesterday was Dia de Portugal, so the internet place was closed--I think the Portuguese were out to get me, because they know how much I love internet time. But it`s okay, because we still got it today!!) I LOVE YOU I LOVE YOU I LOVE YOU!!!
Sister B

p.s. HAPPY BDAY K8! I hope 21 was everything you wanted it to be and more. 
pps. GET BETTER CANDICE I MISS YOU SO! And I think about you all the time and I wish we could be companions, because it would be the funniest thing in all of the whole world. 
ppps. Shan- Alma 26:16. That`s the last I wanna hear about you making fun of me.


The beautiful sister lofgreen. 

wanna hear a funny joke? It`s june and I`m still wearing my winter coat.

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

"The worst part about fasting is no Diet Coke."

Yeah...that`s how righteous I am. Oops. But, I mean, we all think it right?
ANYWAYS. HAPPY FAMILY HAPPY DAYS I LOVE MONDAY AND I LOVE INTERNET AND I LOVE HEARING FROM ALL MY FAVORITE PEOPLE IN ALL OF THE WHOLE WORLD. I can`t tell you how many times I`ve gone to bed this week thinking to myself, well, at least my family and friends in America love me. can`t stop loving me, or I just won`t know what to do with myself.
Hm...this week. Lots happened, and not a lot happened, and basically I don`t know what to tell you. I never know what to tell you. Okay, so...we`ll start with this. Remember on Sims when your little person is alive and happy how they have this green diamond over their head, but when they`re hungry or sleepy or dying, it turns red? I`ve been thinking that`s how it needs to be in real life too. The people who are ready to talk to us will have a little green diamond over their head and the ones who aren`t would have a red one and then, it`d just be SO much easier to know who to talk to. Or....if we could just ride around on scooters. That`d be cool too.
This week, we did divisions with the coordinating sisters over our area, Sister Wilde and Sister Alves. Sister Wilde was the coordinating sister over my last area too, and we got to watch General Conference together, and she`s one of those people who just makes you feel SO loved and like youre best friends right away, so obvi we are. Anyways, I went with Sister Alves and it was INCREDIBLE. She is incredible. She and her brother (sister maybe?) are the only ones in the family who are members. And she`s from Fortaleza, Brazil (SHOUT OUT TO ELLY BBY)! And she`s just the sweetest little angel, and we just worked so hard and it was INCREDIBLE day. It felt SO good to feel like we were working our hardest again. AND THE COOLEST THING HAPPENED! We walked up to this girl sitting on a little wall in the rain, and she just started shaking her head no, like she didnt want to hear anything, and so we just asked her for directions, and then we asked her if we could pray with her. She said yes, so Sister Alves said a pray, and THE SPIRIT WAS SO STRONG, and we looked up, and she was crying so hard. It was the coolest, sweetest thing that I have ever experienced. And then we just testified that what she was feeling was God`s love for her. And then she said a prayer on her own, and it was incredible. The way the Lord works is unreal. I really really hope we can get a hold of her again, because I just know that she needs to be able to know and feel Christ`s love for her. And I just automatically felt a love for her that could truly only have been the Lord`s love, because I only met her for like 3 seconds, but I know that she is truly a special daughter of God and He loves her so much. Anyways, divisions are incredible, because you just learn SO much from these other sisters that know SO much and have worked with all sorts of different people. It`s amazing. She`s amazing. And sometimes.....a change of pace is a little blessing sent from above.
Another cool story! So...we were walking home and we were kind of down in the dumps, because it`d been a reallyyyy long day and all of our appoinments had fallen through and NO one wanted to talk to us and these girls had just laughed at us/ran away from us during our prayer with them, so was one of those days, and we were ready to go home, but we still had like 15 minutes, so we prayed to know where the Lord wanted us to go, and we both felt the same direction, so we started walking. And then we felt to stop and talk to this one kid, so we did, and he was SO nice! And he agreed to meet with us again and come to church with us and he wanted to make sure he had our number too so he could get ahold of us! The Lord really does put people in our path who are ready to hear His message. It`s incredible what happens when you`re being exactly obedient and working hard on staying in tune to the Spirit.
Like when we had to go to the bathroom, so we were walking back home...and then our investigator walked out of his house at that exact time and was going to the park to sit! Well then perfect....let`s go teach you while you sit in the park :)

The other Sisters and Elders had a baptism this weekend, and I think that baptisms will always be one of my favorite parts of this, because the people are always just so happy and so excited to be doing the will of the Lord, and it`s just so incredible, because it doesn`t matter how old or young they are, they have changed their lives so much and they`re willing to continue to do whatever it takes. Guys, I have never thought about life after death more than I have here on the mission, but something that I find so incredible is that we all chose this plan in the beginning and we wanted to come here and have these experiences and we knew that it would be hard and we accepted that some of these crazy challenges would be ours, but we were so ready to do them, because we knew that we would be able to inherit something so so SO much greater. AND that we will all get to be together forever!! I can`t begin to express how much I love you all. It is incredible. I love you all SO SO much. Heavenly Father loves you all SO SO much. Sometimes, when people want nothing to do with us, I just say, `Okay, but I know God loves you.` And then..well, they can`t deny that. Hehe, I win. Just kidding. But really. He loves us SO much more than we can even begin to comprehened, so even if that`s all that gets us through the day (and`s all that gets me through the day), He`s always with us. He waiting to give us all of the blessings He has promised us. We just gotta keep on keeping on, and we`ll be there before we know it!
I LOVE YOU ALL SO SO SO MUCH!! You guys are so incredible and you make me SO happy. You have no idea how much I love you and what an inspiration you all are to me. I am so happy to be a missionary. I am so happy to be in Portugal. I am so happy to be meeting randoms... children of God... everyday. But mostly, I am so happy because I LOVE YOU ALL SO MUCH AND I HAVE YOU IN MY LIFE!! Miss you everyday. 

Sister Brooks

Meet Sister Wilde. She is like my big sister in the mission and I love her more than life itself. She`s one of the coordinating sisters over our area (aka like sister zone leader...kind of). She`s perfect and I look up to her SO much. Seriously, I strive to be like her. 

Sister Alves--the other coordinating sister over our area. She`s INCREDIBLE. I`ll tell you more in the letter. We did divisions together this week.
The four of us.