Monday, August 29, 2016

Literally in Paradise!

Bem-Vindas, Porto Velho! 

Yes it's true, I'm literally in paradise! This area is seriously so beautiful! I'm surrounded by water and boats, parks and old buildings! Statues and gardens!

My new companion is Sister Agurto! She is from Chile and lives in Santiago which is super close to where
Dallin will be serving! How cool!  She is 23. She has 8 months in the field which means in one month we get to head north (sleep for a whole day! yay!) and renew her visa. She has a super thick accent which was a little difficult at first but we understand each other now!  

This week we spent several hours wandering the streets, exploring, more or less (ok fine, let's be honest, we spent many hours completely turned around just trying to find our apartment! ha ha!) 

The last sisters here didn't leave hardly anything. We had a list of pesquisadores but slowly we soon realized that most of the addresses were wrong or didn't exist... and some of them just say, third garage after the souvenir shop next to that one thing by that other thing..

So my plea for every missionary and future missionary: Please write in your Area Book!! haha!

But seriously.

Thankfully one address was almost correct. And after talking to our Sister Leaders and finding out the house we were looking for is in the opposite corner from an African Temple with a giant crown on top, we finally found a pesquisadora! 

Angelita! We talked with her for almost an hour about the other lessons she'd received and about her family, her expectations and hopes for her daughter, Alicia(3), etc. She is truly amazing. She is two years away from finishing a major in education in order to be a teacher. 

This sunday she visited the Stake Conference and had a wonderful time! She had a baptism date marked but it turns out she isn't actually married...so guess what? We're going to talk to her husband this week (hopefully start teaching him, because he's already open to our visits) and mark not only a baptism for Angelita but a wedding date! Yay!  

Please pray for her and her husband. I really want to teach them as a whole family, but for now we are just getting to know them.

So far I'm loving this area! The only thing that could make it better...a new bed! haha! Our Sister Leaders LTS (Sister Brito and Sister Quintiliano) stayed at our house last night because they needed to head for Porto Alegre early this morning and the area where they are serving is actually a boat ride away! Anyways, we knew that that our beds were broken and had already talked to the Elders about getting someone to fix them or replace them...but I dont think we realized just how broken...

Under my bed had been the other two mattress for the LTS. I knew that more or less these mattresss were holding up my mattress in one spot and I'd even put a pillow under my mattress to fill a part that was super dipped...Well, we removed the mattresses and....Crash! One half of my bed fell on the ground... 

We're praying for a replacement soon haha! 

Anyways, I love you all and I'm so happy to hear about your adventures! 

Oh and guess what? I have only one year left??? How crazy is that!

All my love,
Sister Hemmert 

Monday, August 22, 2016


Headed for the beach! #RioGrandeTche 

Can you believe it has almost been 6 months! Where does the time go! I'm leaving the cozy town of Arroio Grande and headed for the wild side of Rio Grande. I'll get to eat lots of fish apparently so I'm hoping that my previous preferences in relation to food has changed, like with many things here. For example, I love tomatos now. Cant get enough. So hopefully, fish also! haha

It was seriously a great 6 weeks with Sister Pereira. She is headed for Porto Alegre to get her new companion and be a treinadora.

Oh! I'll be in Rio Grande with Sister Knuth! My treinadora! She will be in the same zona and maybe even distrito with me! 

This weekend was crazy in Arroio. Eveyone there lovesss politics. And every Politician has a car that drives around the city blasting music for their campaign. We entered Irma Dinas house a few days ago singing the music of one of these politicians and she almost kicked us out because she doesnt like this party! haha Not seriously, but for reals.. 

Skarlet (Recent Convert) even wants to be a Candidate one day. Her mom made up a jingle for her (which, I'm sorry, is terribly hilarious but super catchy. So the whole time we'd been getting ready or walking to a visita we would start singing, "Mulher da Fé, Mulher da Fé" and make up new lines every time.) 

So Sister Pereira and I decided that this next transferencia will be incredible because literally every force in the universe was against us leaving Arroio Grande today! haha 

I received my transfer Saturday night and started packing. Sunday morning we had a Stake Conference in Pelotas. Our whole Branch left on a Unibus early in the morning because Pelotas is two hours away. It was crazy. People kept showing up until the very end! Sister Pereira and I ended up giving up our seats for a family and went in search for more chairs because there were probably 50 people standing in the back of the conference. 

Afterwards I gave my suitcases to Sister Marlow and we returned to our area to work. We tried desperately to visit people, but because of a Political parade or something no one was at home! Everyone was in the center of the city. We ended up inviting a bunch of people and returning to Irma Dina´s for a family home evening. 

Our plan was to leave for Pelotas 6:45 pm
But Sister Pereira received news from da Presidente that she would be a trainer and I would be opening an area. So she had to pack her bags for four days of travel. 

Turns out, Sunday only has one Onibus run at 9:10pm and would arrive in Pelotas 11:00pm! Yikes!

We were told by our leaders that we could leave the next morning and arrive in time for the Van headed for Porto Alegre becauase it would leave in the afternoon. But this seemed wrong, because normally it leaves in the morning because the drive is 10 hrs! 

Turns out the Van would leave 8:00am, but our Onibus would only arrive 8:30! 

It was crazy but they said that if we could arrive before 8:45 Sister Pereira would make it (because in truth the mistake was theirs..,.)

It was pure craziness! 

Everyone was telling us wrong information and they even told us that we would have to leave our area directly for Porto Alegre 8:10 in the morning, which would mean I would go to Porto Alegre with Sis. P and sleep for 10 hrs and return in the Van, but turns out our area doesnt even have a 8:10 for Porto Alegre! 

Are you confused yet? Because we were seriously confused. And ended up doing exactly what we had planned to do from the beginning and leave in the morning, knowing that the van is always late! haha 

Pure craziness. 

Sister Pereira and I were laughing, trapped in our area, this next transfer will literally have miracles because seriously, it was nearly impossible to leave Arroio! 

How I will miss Arroio! I loved it there so much! The members are seriously amazing and I've had so many wonderful experiences! 

I'm in Pelotas now spending a P-day with the sisters here. One of the coolest parts about a Dom do Linguas is that I can talk with Americans in Português and in inglês! We'll be talking and talking and completely understanding each other in Português! I was chatting with an LTS Sister Hilton from Wisconsin and it was so hilarious. She would be talking and switch to ingles imitating the accent de pessoas in Utah and Wisconsin. 

Anyways, dont have much time but I love you! So excited to see my new area! 

All my love, Sister Hemmert 
Here is a more detailed map of Sister Hemmert's first area- Arroio Grande (on the map as Arrojo Grande) and now transferring to the coastal area of Rio Grande. Can you spot them? :)

Monday, August 15, 2016

A Better Life

Today we were walking to the library and I randomly I looked at my companion and said, "Sister, eu estou em Brasil!" E she said more or less, you're wierd:) haha Seriously. I love Brasil. I love this area and the people here. I love Portuguese, and I love that I can communicate with people here! I can talk with Missionaries from the States in Português! How crazy! We had a Zone Conference this week and it was really awesome! We had to travel to Pelotas again and stay with Sister Marlow (from Blackfoot) and her new companion, Sister Assis. It was so cool to be able to really have a conversation with an American, but in Português! Ive reached a point where I'm beginning to forget ingles. Sometimes I'll be saying a phrase or scripture I use a lot in English and the ingles will slip out and Sister Pereira will just laugh, but when I try to speak English, its nearly impossible. 

It's pretty funny to tell the truth. We  were visiting Skarlet this week and her little baby boy is so adorable! Whenever I talk he starts talking too and bouncing. He is very smitten! haha Its the accent I think! But afterwards everyone wanted me to say something in english so i recited our address for them, "I live on 8116 Sunnyside Rd...." 

Everyone was like, "Wooww! How cool! What did you say?" 

They just like me for my language ;) 

Anyways, we made a cake for Fathers Day here. Chocolate with Orange Juice! It was perfect! Made with love. We put it in the fridge and when we woke up it was a wonderful representation of the Grande Canyon! haha Oh well! Tasted great and thats all that really matters! haha!

It's starting to warm up here! We might be entering spring soon! 

This last week we were trying to find people to teach when we passed a house and saw a person inside. Both Sister P and I thought, I want to try this house, and before we had come up to the door the woman, Isis, met us in the front. We started talking with her and turns out her husband has been really sick and they've been praying for something to help them. We've started teaching them and this week our second lesson with them we taught them about a Word of Wisdom. José has a problem with his heart and so he doesnt drink or smoke, but still he loves coffee, and Isis smokes. After we taught them José said, "Ill have to stopping drinking coffee then." 

To help them we went out and bought sugar free halls for Isis(diabetic) and Cervada for José (Its like a fake coffee everyone drinks here. It's really good. But we couldnt find the good brand and the one we did find did not smell good at all! It was horrible and both Sister Pereira and I were like, I dont even think prayer will help this stuff! 
But, We returned the next day and they had bought Cervada! And turns out they were liking it! (They had tried it one time before and hated it! But now they like it!!) 

Now we are working with Isis so that she can stop smoking. 

This family is really lovely and I am truly excited to help them progress in the gospel. If you can just keep them in your prayers I would really appreciate it! 

Also, Sister Pereira is a recent convert. She had her 2 year anniversary this week! Her parents aren't members but they started to receive visits from missionarios this week! If you could pray for them and Sister Pereira also I know she would appreciate it!

This week was super long but really great! SO greatful for all the support and love I have. I received the letters from the Family Renuion! So feliz! Also um card from the Relief Society! Tell them thanks for me! And tell Ingrid I understood every word!  Tell Alex also that my companion is impressed with his português!

Anyways, I want to leave with a scripture I really loved this week in Ether 12:4  "Through our faith and our efforts we can, with certainty, hope for a better world, a better life." 

All my Love, Sister Hemmert! 

Ps. I visited a Cementério this week! It was super old and super cool! It had all these super old Sepulcres and the gravestones had the signatures of the people! 

Monday, August 8, 2016

Return For Those Left Behind

5 months! Say what? Say what!

Can hardly believe it! I almost have 6 months! which means that i'll have one third of my missão! I feel like I left home yesterday! 

This week was crazy! 

Let me tell you. In Pelotas, two hours away, we had a prisonbreak a couple days ago. We were working as normal when we got a call for Irma Dina and she told us that 40 men had escaped the prison and that we should head to her house because if these men wanted to hide anywhere it would be in a border city with only two police officers mais ou menos. #arroiogrande 

Turns out it was only 6 men who are still on the run to the best of my knowledge! But in Jaguarão, a little bit more south of us, where the other elders in our district our serving, they heard it was 50 men! 

Anyways, this week was super long! Tiring, but in the best sort of way. And this morning I was reading my patriarchal blessing and something really cool happened. I translated it line for line in my head. Read it as though it was in Português! Truly o dom do linguas é real. Eu não tenho nenhuma duvida. 

And agora I want to talk about a letter Dad sent me about the 50 miler. I was tearing up reading it.

He wrote: "This last week was my 50 miler with the scouts, and we had a wonderful but very grueling hike. I had a couple days where my body was a little bit sore, particularly Friday. It was a little emotional for me with two very tender moments as we asked the young men, Britton and Caleb, to go back down the mountain and rescue a few that had fallen behind. Somewhat like Brigham Young and Ephraims Rescue during the handcart. With no complaints they scurried down the mountain returning carrying the hikers backpacks. The next day a similar experience with Carson and Colby going back to help the others who had fallen behind. Each day we divided up the gear of a struggling hiker and passed it around for the other young men to carry. Never once was there a complaint.  Friday was the hardest day for me, as we hiked 16 miles through some very rough and unmaintained trails with lots of downed trees that we had to climb over. By the end of the day I could barely take another step,  at which point I heard Britton calling my name as he was coming down the mountain to carry my pack. When we reached the point where he had set his pack aside he threw both packs on his body and continued to walk up the hill. Shortly after, Colby came running down the mountain and carried my pack to relieve Britton. My heart will always be full, and I will treasure that moment forever.  My knee did well but my feet are on fire and will take several days to heal.

I want you to know how much I love you and how proud I am of your service. And I know that you are a blessing in your mission to those you serve. I love you and I can't wait to read your letter this week.

Always in my prayers, my dear sweet daughter. 

Love dad."

This experience is, for all of us, our mission. Now and forever. To lift the burdens of those around us. To carry them to the end. Enduring. Fighting an uphill battle. Returning for those left behind. Sometimes we have to leave the 90 and 9 in search of the 1. And sometimes, when our burden becomes too heavy, when our feet cannot go on, we can know, with certainty, that beside us, holding us up or carrying us upon His shoulders is Christ. Graças a Ele

Alma 7:10-12
Matthews 11:30 

This video is in portugues but it is really simple and really powerful. Maybe they have it in ingles. Its called Graças a Ele

 Eu sei que ele sofreu para mim, para ti, e para todos nos. Para que pudesse socorrer Seu povo. E Eu sei que ele vive e por causa isto, eu vou continuar. Eu vou lutar e tentar cada dia mais. Talvez hoje, eu não vou falar perfeito e eu sei que eu não sou perfeita, mas ele foi e é perfeito. Ele é meu exemplo, e Ele me deu as palavras eu preciso e as palavras o povo Dele precisarão.

Com amor,
Sister Hemmert


Monday, August 1, 2016

How Plastic Shoes Saved My Life: A Short Story, by a Sister in Brazil

So let's start by singing, 

Miracles happen once in while...(#princessdiariessoundtrack)

So, I can't remember if I talked about Cassiel. I think I did.

Anyways, Cassiel is really, really dear. Last week we were teaching his mom and him and sometimes other people that live in their house. "Sometimes," because there are always people passing through, sitting, listening, leaving, coming back. It's a little diasterous for a lesson, because, well, in order to teach we need the Spirit. 

So we starting teaching in the church and the difference was incredible. Cassiel really and truly knows everything. He studied and learned every lesson in a week and was interviewed Friday morning. Before the Elderes arrived to interview him we called Cassiel to remind him to meet us at the Church. During this phone call Sister Pereira asked him if he studied and prayed to prove it :) "Who was José Smitch?" Cassiel: "A prophet of God."

He was baptized this Saturday and confirmed Sunday Morning! 

All my Love
Sister Hermeth (This is how our Branch President wrote my name the other day. But I perfer how Roli thought my name was: Hamster (in portugues) haha) 

PS. Saddly I dont have any time but I will quickly tell you that it is a good thing the church is true and that missionarios have protections because while the water was warming in the Baptismal "Pool" Sister Pereira put her hand in the water and I merely touched with my fingertips .. Only to realize after that the warming thing was in the water. So basically it was live wires... "uuhh..Sister, eu acho que nos não pudemos fazer isso."  

PPS Everyone could not believe we were alive.

PPPS We thought it was because we had decided to use Plastic shoes and had protection espiritual

PPPPS So that Nana doesnt have a heartattack, Turns out Irmao Cleomar explained that it is actually because the warmer is just like the one in our shower and is some kind of thing that wont shock people when they get in the shower. So em verdade, nothing bad could have happened! I think... 

All my love and promises to be more careful :0 
Sister Hemmert