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Monday, January 9, 2017

Mission Changes

Today I have 10 months! I climbed the mountain and now I just have to reach the summit! 

So grateful for this New Year. Can hardly believe that we entered 2017. It's so weird to say. 

These days of training are passing so quickly. We had a district meeting this week and our Presidente arrived to interview everyone. We had a bunch of changes in the mission. Actually, the whole mission world changed a little bit. Our nights got a little bit more time to sleep and our mornings lost a little bit of study. Our Pday will officially start 9:00! But it is official, gente, it is now a commandment that we have to excercise! haha At least a Sister and I had already started our workouts and stretch.. Now we just have to start actually running! haha:) 

We'll have a bit of an adjustment period from now on but I'm really excited. It will be nice to have a couple more minutes to rest during the night. It never feels like we have time to eat and plan and prepare and sleep. But now we will have time for everything! Que benção (What a blessing)

I had an interview with my Presidente this week and told him that in this heat I'm really missing the snow back home because my family is sending so many photos of snow haha. He told me not to worry and that, "Uour family is just becoming more white and you are becoming "morenona" negra:) hahaha!

We had an amazing fast meeting this week. I was thinking about my first fast Sunday on the mission with Sister Aranha. The last time she fasted she´d been at home. And here i am, with only 8 more fast Sundays. How time flies.

I feel so blessed during this time and know that this work is real. Real and absolutely blessed.

Love you all.
Sister Hemmert
P.s. I need the email from all the missionaries in our stake that i know :) Thanks!

Monday, January 2, 2017

2017

One week down and a new year began! How amazing is it that we have entered 2017? It sounds so strange! I so grateful to be serving here during this time of changes, new beginnings! How wonderful is the first of the year. 

So my new companion is from Santos. Sister Aranha(Spider) She promises that she doesn't bite! haha She is amazing. We are having a blast here in our area, Bagé. We're working really hard to stay alive here in the hottest part of the world, drinking lots of water, and we're almost drinking Sunblock also. Many people say that during summer they need to use umbrellas for the sun. I thought at the start of my mission, "Wow, I will never ever do that. How crazy." I spoke too soon. This week I used an umbrella for the first time. First it was raining cats and dogs, and the moment it stopped raining, the sun broke through the clouds and.... the world literally almost started on fire. And there was us, still under umbrellas. In the middle of the desert. haha

Anyways, I want to share with you all a letter that i got from a friend of mine that you will recognize. I asked him for some help because I never trained anyone and this is how he responded:

Hey there pal! How are you doing cousin?:)
I have trained and it is an awesome experience! Nothing will compare ever to just being a normal missionary and cruising around with your companion, but training is great! First of all, don't freak out if you are because it will all be ok. Your mission president is led by revelation and therefore he isn't even the one that assigned you to train, but Christ is! Imagine that, the Savior Himself trusting you! He's not going to let you fail so long as you try so you have nothing to worry about! Trust the training model and 12 week. Trust your ability to receive revelation. Keep being obedient and doing your best! Seriously Lauren, you are going to do so well. Don't get discouraged if you feel overwhelmed or like you're failing in any way. No one is perfect and you are going to make mistakes, but you were not called to be flawless, but called to serve. Serve with all your heart and you will be led to know exactly what Heavenly Father needs you to do! You got this!! Don't be afraid, just have faith and trust!! You're the coolest Lauren, it's really good to hear from you! Good luck! Love ya!
Elder Kleinman

I know that this is the Lord's work. I know that I was called to serve. I will never be perfect, which is something i told many of my presquisadores this week, but I know that every day more I have the chance to become more like my Savior in who's service I'm in. I know that He is working with me, at my side. I know that He suffered everything, EVERYTHING that I suffer. I know this. And I know that through Him I never have to suffer again. Through Him I can do anything and EVERYTHING. How grateful I am for friends like this who help me remember this important purpose and opportunity that we all have. 

Love you all and hope that you all will have an incredible start to the year!
Família do Presidente Ortiz

Monday, December 26, 2016

I'm a Treinadora!

Happy Holidays! Feliz Natal! 

If you haven't heard it yet from my momma, I'm a Treinadora! I'll be training a new missionary! Yay!!  

Right now I'm in Porto Alegre. It only took 7 and a half hours to get here and 2 buses, but we arrived! Safe and sound! I spent the whole time talking with a Sister Smith (born and raised in Bend, Oregon! From Utah now) and planing how we will spend our time after the mission doing all the hikes in Oregon and Utah.

I'll be staying here for a few days, working with the Sisters from Ala Dois (2nd ward), waiting for my new companion. It looks like only 2 Sisters will be arriving! 

To be honest I don't know how to train any but I'll do my best! It's going to be an adventure for sure! 

Right now I'm serving with a Sister Melo, she is amazing. From Natal, Brasil. A few months ago she had to go home because she had a brain tumor, but she is back and ready to do miracles! She already is one! Wish I could stay with her for the whole transfer! haha But as it works out we will both be training at the same time. We're super excited.

This week was my last week with Sister Abdon, but guess what? She'll be staying close by! She'll be in Bagé still, but Presidente closed an area of Elderes and will be opening with Sister Abdon and a Sister Wright! She says that I have her number and can call whenever I need her, plus I'll see her every Thursday! She also says that she has my number and she'll call to bother me everyday! :) love her! 

We had an amazing time this last week together. We spent it caroling for everyone and gather a bunch of food to donate to some of our pesquisadores and membros with necessity this Christmas. We spent Christmas day with Irma Solange, who's son Christofer left for the mission just a few weeks ago. It was a simple Christmas lunch that ended perfectly, we were singing for her when we recieved a call from our Presidente, "Sorry Irma! We need to take this!" It was that moment when we found out that a Sister Abdon would be transfered and I would become a Trainer! Afterwards our day became super messy!

The Presidents assistents starting calling and saying that since it was Christmas weekend all the tickets were bought for Porto Alegre and we would have to leave Sunday night as early as possible and that maybe we wouldnt be able to talk to our families (I was like umm não por favor! haha) It ened up that we would have to leave 8pm for Pelotas, stay the night and afterwards ride to Porto Alegre in a van filled with missionaries!

We ended up talking with our families and I learned that I cant speak english anymore. So that was cool. Hope my family understood me! I don't even think they asked me any of the questions they wanted to because I spent a bunch of time just trying to explain that I would be leaving Bagé only to come back in a few days. #giftoftonguesgotreal 

But I was glad to see them, and I think the most wonderful moment was when I read, Moroni 10:34. The last verse of the Livro De Mórmon. What a blessing it was to share with my family that moment. I finished the Book of Mormon for the second time in my life straight through, but this time in Portugues. I will never forget the feeling I had as I approached those last words. 

 34 E agora me despeço de todos. Logo irei descansar noparaíso de Deus, até que meu espírito e meu corpo tornem a unir-se e eu seja carregado triunfante pelo ar, para encontrar-me convosco no agradável tribunal do grandeJeová, o Juiz Eterno tanto dos vivos como dos mortos. Amém.

34 And now bid unto all, farewell. soon go to rest in the paradise of God, until my spirit and body shall again reuniteand am brought forth triumphant through the airto meet you before the pleasing bar of the great Jehovahthe Eternal Judge of both quick and dead. Amen.

I know with all my heart and soul that this is the only true and complete gospel on the Earth. This is the work of the Lord. A rolling stone cut from the mountains without hands, and it can not be stopped, because it is true. The Book of Mormon is true, simply true, grandly true. It was translated by a Prophet of God, Joseph Smith. He was not a perfect man, but he was a man led by God so that I could, as well as my family, with millions of others, receive the Lord's word and Church in my life. I know that this is the Church of God, this church, carries His Name which is the name of Christ. I know that He lives. He was sent to save His brothers. He was sent to save me. And as His church carries His name, I do also. Not just on my name tag, but every day more I carry His name in my heart. Im so grateful and feel so blessed. In His name, Jesus Christ, Amen. 

Monday, December 19, 2016

Feliz Natal

We received an email from Sister Hemmert's mission president requesting a video for them to show all the missionaries during their special Christmas Conference. This was such a fun surprise for our girl and her weekly email and response is below:

This week was amazing! Though I don't have much time I want to say that I love you all and I love Natal! It's super super hot but super, super great!
This week we had our Christmas conference in Pelotas. The Sisters from Dom Pedrito arrived the night before and we all hung out doing our nails and my hair at the wee hours 10:30! haha Had to wake up 5:00 to get ready and take a van to Pelotas with our district. 

We had an amazing time! Did a skit with our district that was hilarious! One day I'll have to show it to you all but let me tell you, our presidente only laughed during ours! haha jkjk....but serio;) If it was a competition... 

I had the incredible opportunitity to see my family dancing as the silly family they are! Afterwards everyone told me how they loved my family! haha!! :) I love them too! They're pretty great.

I'm so grateful for this time that we have. This time of year is so amazing. It's a time to start over, a time to change, and a time to remember why our Lord and Savior was born. And I know that he was sent for each and every one of us. This is a time of miracles. A time of laughter and love and thought short on time I want to invite you all to remember during this time, our Lord. And as the Shepherds in Luke, feel the Glory of Deus, leave everything behind, and entrar the humble stable where lies our Lord. Leave behind the worries of this past year and place your New Year in His hands. Remember Alma 7: 10-12

Wish you a happy Christmas! 
Sister Hemmert
Practicing for our skit

 

Monday, December 12, 2016

We Will Make A Difference!


Its official gente! 9 months down, 9 to go!! Vamos! (Let's go!)

In just a few days I will have my first Christmas here in Brasil. It will also be the last Christmas I have on the mission! haha! Sounds strange. 

I received the packages from the fam this week! I was so excited to receive the voice recorder from Dad. It was such a Dad present, with his handwriting and instructions written above the factory instructions! Excited to use it!

This week was great! We had the opportunity to work with our Sister Leaders. Every transfer we have to do a division with them so that they can know how we work here and so that they can help us, mostly they just leave our apartment messy;) 

I got to share with them Poptarts! One of the Sisters from the USA almost cried;) haha She is such a sweetheart!

I'm starting to pick up more that just the accent here in the south but also the sass from my companheira. Everyone says that I'm turning into her! haha! Sadly, she will mostly be headed for another area at the end of this transfer! So glad I could spend so much time with her, learning and laughing and até o pó! (eating?) :) 

I got to share with one of our pesquisadoras a lição (lesson) very special. I was in division with a young women from our ward, Dhulyara, visiting Luzilanha. I don't know why but sometimes in division i get really nervous. I think it's a companionship thing haha jk! So i shared with her Ether 2:24 when the Lord ask the brother of Jared what he desires that the Lord will do for him. Que desejais que eu faça? 

The Lord knows that we can do anything with His help. He is willing and ready to help in our lives, we have to start doing our part, demonstrating for Him that we are willing and ready to work at His side, knowing that, 2N18:19-20, everything we ask for in righteousness in the name of the Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, we WILL receive. 

This week we had a treinamento with our Zone and talked about three things important that we have. Revelation, Authority, and Power. They asked how we can use these three things together. I responded that in order to receive revelation for our lives and those we serve we have to seek it, we already have the authority as missionaries to receive and work here for them, but in order to have the power that comes with authority we have to do something different. The moment we stop praying we have to get up off our knees and we have to start acting. The Lord wants courageous sons and daughters, so, we have to starting working. we have to starting exercising the power He gave us as His children. And with it, we will make a difference.

This is it! Love you all! 


Sister Hemmert

Monday, December 5, 2016

Stand Firm


So I dyed my hair black. Thought it would be a good change. Just kidding! But all this talk of lice is making my head itch!! 

To inform everyone, I'm free of lice! But I have recently found out that I'm in a competition with my BFF Sister Rebecca Gunn to see who can get the worst thing during the mission! Unfortunately, she is winning. My prayers go out to her as she battles the waters of Nicaragua and the lasting side effects.  

Anyways, all is well here in Rio Grande do Sul. We're preparing for winter here...i mean summer! Goodbye white Christmas, Hello Natal Brazilian style. 

We are preparing for our christmas conference that will be arriving this next week. We'll be traveling to Pelotas in style as normal :) Onibus 5:00am. But as for this week, I'm preparing for my 9 month mark!

Half way there! How can it be? Doesn't even seem possible! Its probably passing so quickly because I'm having such a wonderful time!

Sister Abdon got sick this Sunday and so I tried to make us dinner. She is a professional cook so she was instructing me throughout the process. Well, as she said, "Se for só você eu morreria de fome." If it was just you i would die of hunger." haha But I'm learning a lot with her or at least I'm trying really hard not to burn our dinner! haha

This week we got to work with a recent convert from another ward here in Bagé. Cinthia. She is literally amazing! We're trying to get her serve a mission! haha She was baptized just a few months ago with her sister and already has been such a great help here. She has such a desire to help and serve and has such a testimony to share! She explained how her and her sister were always challenging the other to be baptized, challenging and encouraging. In every visit with her I felt honored as a missionary to be able to not only help a pesquisador but also a recent convert grow. 

We are entering the Christmas season and ending another year. It is strange to think that we are entering 2017! 

Anyways, i recently reached the middle of 3rd Nephi!! Im so excited. I'll be finishing o livro de mormon before the New Year! Wanted to share with you all a few verses that i loved in 3 Nefi 14: 24-27 For the Christmas season, as we build our homes upon this gospel, that is a true gospel, we will always stand firm against the storm! 

Com amor, Sister Hemmert 

Monday, November 28, 2016

Adventures of Sister Abdon and Sister Hemmert: Lice, and a Gospel of Miracles

Happy Thanksgiving Sister Hemmert, you will never guess what i'm a so grateful for:

A companion who stays up until the wee hours helping me remove lice from my hair! Yes. For the first time in my life, I got lice! :( I had to call our President's wife and she prescribed a medicine for me to take. When we hung up she re-called and told us that we need to change all the sheets in our apartment (which we had already done!) but in the background we hear the very distinctive laughter of our Presidente. #vidamissionaria 

Today i'll be in the salon getting my hair done and i think I'll start coloring my hair so that this never happens again! haha! 

I was a little bit dramatic this week as a result of the lice incident of 2016, and it didnt help that in every house we visited my companheira brought up the topic of lice com (with) them. Sure, she didn't say that I had lice but only she got a kick out of it hahah gotta love my companheira 

Anyways, we have been working a lot with some amazing families here of pesquisadores and less actives. It has been such a privilege to help them return to church or see them experiencing everything for the first time. I'm truly grateful for this chance to serve so many amazing families through the gospel. 

One family, Rodolfo and Joyce, are a unique case. A few days ago he had an accident at work and decided to call a ward member to come pray for him. He was baptized with 11 anos (years) and when his family stopped coming to church he had been preparing to serve a missionary. His life took a turn and he starting working for people that he shouldn't have. Now, he is trying to turn his life around. He has a beautiful family that he is trying, this time, to bless with the gospel that he knows is true. 

Come Sunday morning it is pouring rain. On a good day we have 30 or 40 people in the sacrament meeting, but without fault, on rainy days our frequencia falls. We weren't expecting many. Clearly we were hoping and praying, but when we arrived to find Rodolfo and his son, Elizeu and his whole family(less active), Suelem and Rogerio (LA), and many more. 53 people in all, we felt extremely blessed. Such an amazing opportunity. 

I'm so grateful for this gospel and know with certainty that in this day and age, the greatest miracles are not healing the blind or sick or afflicted, because God has already blessed us with this as a daily miracle. No, the great miracle of our day is change in a life and person that comes through the principals of the gospel. 

This is a gospel of miracles. And I'm so grateful to be a part of it.

Anyways, these have been the adventures of Sister's Abdon and Hemmert, Bagé, Rio Grande do Sul, Brasil

With all my love!
Sister Hemmert