October 29, 2013

1st transfers

Dear family and friends,
PHEW! What a week. My first transfer in the mission field was doida!!! (crazy) Serio, its practically unheard of to switch trainers in the middle of training, but Presidente Soares changed almost everyone in the mission, from what i can tell! We had two new areas open up in our zone, and every dupla (companionship) but one received a new comp. So its been nuts!  But in a good way :) Because of the HUGE influx of Sister missionaries (can I get an Amen?), practically everyone in the mission right now is training or being trained. I think there are only 3 sisters who are just jr comps. So, best guess is that all the newbies will be training next transfer and this is a way to give us a little more responsabilidades to prepare. Yes, you heard that right, yours truly will most likely be training in a few short six weeks! AHHHHHH :D still not sure how i feel about this
We are teaching a man right now that has a problem with coffeee. So, to prepare him for batismo, we are going over his house every morning, 6am, with a bottle of juice! YAYYYYY FOR EARLY MORNINGS! But oh man, you should have seen his face light up this morning when we got there. He has some self confidence problems and really just needs to feel important and he felt so special. We care about him enough to come every morning, quite early, just to help him out with juice and a scipture. This is what christ means when he leaves the 99 to find the 1.
We have lots of FHE nights planned with members and their friends this week, as well as a family history activity this saturday! the work truly moves forward when the ward is involved! I love you allll verrrryyyy much!
Sister Carroll

October 24, 2013

Batismos e Mundancas!

Querida Familia!

this week has been INSANE. Seriously.
So last week was nuts because of our 3 pesquisadores with baptisms scheduled for this past weekend. We visited and taught every single one, every single day, which was quite a challenge considering that they all live about a half hour walk away! Many days, we didn't have time to do much else but miracles are real and ALL THREE WERE BAPTIZED!!!! WOOOOOH! 3 baptisms, 2 confirmations, and a ward conference made for one exciting weekend.
Antônio is our golden investigator. I have never met anyone more humble or more repentant in my life. He is incredible, and an inspiration to me. We all cry together during all of our lessons. He has made some pretty bad choices in his life, and he has suffered the consequences tenfold BUT he is so penitent and so willing to change. He just wants to turn his life over to Christ and start over new. He completely quit smoking, IN UNDER A WEEK, right after we taught the world of wisdom. Talk about faith. He just believed us when we told him it was a commandment and starting living it right away. That is the miracle of the Atonement. He was baptized on Saturday, very small and simple with 12 people in attendance. The Bishop closed by saying, Right now, Antônio, you are more clean than anyone else in this room. And its absolutely true. I got chills hearing that. This man, with all his mistakes and faults, was completely washed clean. His sins are gone. He has been forgiven completely. This is the gift of baptism we are offering people, this is the blessing of the gospel. We are a church of second chances, and third chances, and fourth chances, and you get the picture. And because of the Atonement, I can pray for forgiveness constantly, and wake up every morning knowing that my faults are in the past and I can start over and try again today. We have been given the opportunity to change, to become more than we are, to reach our true potential. This is the message of hope of the gospel of Jesus Christ.
On Sunday, we baptized 2 children from less-active families. Teaching Lucas (age 8) and Iara (age 10) has really been an experience. Woooooh parenting is going to be hard. Mom, Dad, I am so grateful for everything you have done for me. It breaks my hard to see the way these children are sometimes neglected, especially spiritual negligence. We need families to learn the gospel, and I will be forever grateful for your example.
we had ward conference this past week as well!!! It was crazy, the Bishop got released! He has held that calling for 7 years, so I guess it was about time. I really love our new bispo, Bispo Pelé (oh yeah, everyone uses first names here. I couldn't tell you the last names of anyone in my ward). He kind of reminds me of Morgan Freeman, except he speaks portugues. His daughters are all around my age too and have been great help in going out with the missionaries. Things are going to be changing in this ward, and I'm excited to see where it goes!
Annnnnnnd transfers!!!!! Sister Oliveira was whisked away to Natal to be the new Sister Líder Trainadora!!!! ?Wooooo :) I really had an amazing mãe. (Mom, on the mission your trainer is called your mãe and your first district leader is your pai. I lost them both this transfer). Normally we are supposed to stay with the same trainer, but Presidente Soares is mixing things up and I'm pretty sure that EVERY new missionary is switching trainers half way through. It was a bit of a shock...and very hard. I'm still in recovery mode. But this will be really good, because I'm going to learn a lot more responsibility. I will receive a new trainer, but I'm the one who knows the area. (or, supposedly knows the area). I'm learning the hard way the importance of keeping good records, because I don't really have addresses or phone numbers. or even a map. So the next few weeks are going to be a little rough. However, fresh starts are always good, né? I have a feeling that I'm going to learn the true meaning of humility. Its knowing where your strength comes from. And right now, I do not have the capacity to do anything that is expected of me. But with Christ, all things are possible! The past few days have given new meaning to the hymn, I Need Thee Every Hour.
So, I'm a little scared right now. But my faith is much stronger than my fear. I cant do this alone, but I'm not alone. President Monson taught, When you are on the Lords errand, you are entitled to the Lords help. I believe in this promise with all my heart and am excited to see the Lord work through me to perform miracles for His other children in Mossoró.
Love you all! Até Segunda-feira!

October 15, 2013

infelizemente, nao tenho tempo por fotos

Oiiii minha família!

This past week has been WONDERFUL. Wanna know why? Because of Conferência Geral, that's why! Presidente Monson promised that the best blessings of conference would come after conference as we lived what we learned. When I heard that, I had a hard time believing it because conference was such a wonderful huge blessing and tender mercy from the Lord that I couldn't possibly imagine how it could get better. But the gospel is all about DOING. It doesn't matter if we study the scriptures every day if we don't start acting on what we read. Likewise with Conferência. And I saw so many miracles this week.

First off, I love my companion with all my heart and wouldn't trade her for the world. But we both have leader-complexes, which makes it tricky sometimes and we had been having more rough patches than usual in the past couple weeks. This week was so wonderful - we worked really well together, were able to laugh together when everything fell apart, and had really meaningful companionship study. I found out on Friday that we had both chosen (independently), to study and apply the talk from Saturday morning about the Christ like attribute of meekness. Coincidence? I don't think so :)

We've been working for over a month with a mother and a son. The son goes to church, but the mother (Aldeiza) goes to her mothers house on Sunday mornings and would never come to church. BIG problem! We've tried to teach her everything we can think of - the importance of Sabbath day worship, the importance of being an example to children, but nothing was working. Then, Saturday, I had the strongest impression to share the scripture that EVERYONE used on Sunday about the first great commandment and loving the Lord with all your heart. We taught this principle and I was soooo afraid that she was going to tell us to get out because, you know, its a little harsh to tell someone that they need to put the lord before their own mother. She sat there quietly for a minute and then said, Vou, Eu vou. (I will go). Ahhhh!!!! Aldeiza e Luis both came to church yesterday and had a really wonderful experience and it was so exciting to see them there. I cant wait to see where this family goes.

finally, MEMBER MISSIONARY WORK! Nossa, this is important. We've had so many lessons with members who sacrifice so much for our pesquisadores that they've never met. Its inspiring to me. In particular, we had a lesson with bispo and his wife with our investigator Antônio. There was the strongest spirit there, everyone was close to tears. When the missionaries and the members work together, miracles happen. This is the truth that the profeta of the Lord tried to teach us last week. This is what we need to do. I love my ward (Orick Graff Mom haha) and I am so excited to teach their friends and their family. We are going to change this city and this stake when we work together with the Lord.

Please, anyone reading this, call your missionaries RIGHT NOW! Make an appointment to go out with them. But that isn't nearly enough. Don't just teach with the missionaries, but bring new investigators to the missionaries. There are people within your circle of influence that are dying to hear the gospel. If you just open your mouth, the Lord will give you the words to say. It just takes a little bit of faith :) 

I love you all so much! We have 3 batismos this weekend - Lucas, Iara, e Antônio. Please pray for them as much as you pray for me, because I can feel your prayers and they bring me so much strength.
Sister Carroll 

October 8, 2013


ola!                                                                                                                  October 7, 2013


this week has been crazzzzzy doida but all good things. I’m not able to send any pictures this week but here’s a brief snapshot-


Receiving an awesome package and many wonderful letters! I will be responding to every single one!

Interviews with President Soares

Sister oliveiras 9 month mark on the mission

Sister oliverias 22 birthday


My first experience in a ward counsel meeting with the stake president



The package was soooo wonderful mom. The peanut butter was definitely the highlight, but I loved the clothes and take pride in the fact that I get to wear your skirt. The purple shirt was absolutely perfect, you did great! The pictures were so wonderful and I got 8 different letters. It was such a nice taste of home. 

Basically, it’s been a floating on air kind of week. especially this weekend, it was sister oliveiras birthday on Saturday and we had a grand total of 6 cakes for her during the day haha - I made one for breakfast, we had one during lunch with members, 3 from other missionaries in between sessions (it was kind of a party to have all the missionaries together so we like to celebrate. seriously, i love my district) and a surprise party after conference.

While all the sugar was enjoyable, it was nothing compared to the spiritual feasting that took place this weekend. Every talk seemed to be written specifically for me and I cannot wait to study them all again. President Monson~s was heart-wrenching, Elder Ballard was the BEST. Seriously, I hope the whole world starts getting more involved in member missionary work, it is so important for us to have the help of leaders and fellowshipping. Also, Elder Scott. And president Eyring. and Elder Christofferson. and alllll the talks by members of the 70 were extremely powerful, I feel guilty that I can’t remember all their names. Seriously, go back and rewatch!!!

One thing I learned during my time in big and important meetings (it still blows my mind to think that I get to participate in these. it’s incredibly humbling to have the power and authority from God to direct his work in my area) is the importance of Family Home Evenings. Little know secret, FHE is a powerful missionary tool! When the members invite a family of investigators over for FHE, they have a strong connection with the ward and the opportunity to see how exactly the gospel can bless a family. I truly believe that the prophets have been emphasizing this program for so long not only because of the importance of the family, but they way that it can help in furthering the gathering of Israel. do NOT underestimate the power of FHE

leiliannys baptism was so wonderful. we had 13 other baptisms that day in our zone, 9 together in the stake center in between sessions of conference, so it was a little chaotic (a lot chaotic!) more another day, 

i love you sooooo much!

-Sister Carroll 

baptisms on General Conference weekend

Sister missionaries at Zone Conference?