Returning With Honor

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Wednesday, November 30, 2016

I Have A Disease? (Week 63)

Hi Everyone,  

This week was pretty good, I don't have much time to write today, but here we go: 

New Member


So Leo, a newly baptized member, is very happy and he is very excited to help others. He even helped baptized his cousin! He also invited us to do a service project with him so that we can get to know his family, and eventually help baptize them. 
Service Project


Leo is just filled with the spirit, and he is happily sharing the Gospel. I think we can all learn from Leo. We should all be happily sharing the Gospel, just like him! I am very happy for Leo, and I know he will be a great leader in the future.

Baptism


In other news...we will be having a baptism this upcoming week. Woohoo! We had 10 in the Month of November, and starting off December with one as well! What a blessing!

What Disease?


Also, I am going to the doctor this week. I have some white spots on my skin. I don't think its anything really bad, but I don't want anything to get worse...so its definitely more of a precaution thing. I bet its just because my skin isn't used to all this sun and heat. Who knows...anyways, I'll let you all know what the Doctors say next week! Thanks everyone for your support. My family always tells me how many views and supporters I have back home, and I couldn't be happier to know that my missionary work is hopefully influencing as many people as possible.
Until next week! Love you all.
Love,
Elder Arevalo :) 

Monday, November 21, 2016

The AP told me what? (Week 62)



Hey Everyone!

Guess what! Five people got baptized this week! I AM SO HAPPY! We had 6 people get baptized two weeks ago, and now we have ANOTHER 4 this week!! THATS 10 TOTAL! AND we are hoping to have ANOTHER 3 NEXT WEEK. It's so amazing to see the Lord help us find people ready to receive the Gospel! Check it out! Sorry the picture is blurry.



The AP told me the other day that I am leading the mission in baptisms this month. I was so touched to hear that. I am so honored, but I cannot take the credit. This is the Lords work, and I am just honored to be here to help. 
Me, Jessica, Raisa, Evny, Bishop, Larissa, Elder [Left to Right]

Spiritual Experience:


So as you know...we had the 4 baptisms. This family is great. We are helping Evny (mother) and her children Jessica (youngest), Larissa (oldest), and Raisa (middle child) currently. We also are helping Rodrigo (oldest son) to come back to church. It has been going very well, but oh my goodness guys. You should have been here when these 4 got baptized. Larissa, Jessica, and Raisa where baptized, and shortly after tears flowed from their eyes as they looked up at my companion and Bishop the second they came out the water. At this moment I knew they felt the Love of the Lord. At this very moment they knew happiness and the knew what it felt like to follow Chirst our savior. 

They loved there baptism. Larissa even told me that she wants to go on a mission and the Lord is blessing them a lot, I can tell. 

I can only say that we made it at the right time, and the lord did the rest. My companion and I just expressed our love and concern for them and they said they felt the spirit. It was a great experience for them and I am going to continue to help them continue to be great members of the church. I know the Lord prepares people for us, and all we need to do is trust in the Lord and do what is right.


Another experience:


At one point I was very lost, and had no idea what I should, where to go, what to do, or who I should talk to. When all of a sudden....a member passed by and said, "Hello!" and said, "We where going to visit some people...Oh I also have references for you guys". He gave us 4 new investigators that wanted to hear our message!!! So that's exactly what we did. We went to these 4 and shared our message about Christ, and they where so happy to hear our message. The lesson was on the plan of salvation. The member that gave us the reference is Eric, and I was with elder Ferrieha.  The visit was amazing. Eric's friend Carol, cried and they knew for themselves that the lord has a plan for us, and what an amazing joy that brought me.   

Monday, November 14, 2016

I Was Wrong (Week 61)

Hey Everyone, 
Do I look Native Next To My Fellow Brazilians?  

Here is a summary of my week:

My new companion is doing good. He is having a bit of a hard time studying for 1 hr and staying focused, but I can tell he is trying. Which is great. So that's good.

Also, I recently found out that two missionaries from my district have been lying to me and saying that they are getting along very well when in fact they are always fighting. Two members recently just told me that they are a bit concerned about them always fighting.

Besides that...I am good. We found an inactive member and they have 3 little children that want to be baptized so we have 3 baptisms this week.

We also found other family that wants to be baptized. Three of them want to get baptized next month. They are very happy. So in total: Three for this week and then possibly for 4 the next month. We are definitely having this success because the members like us and go out with us when we ask. Its great! I am so glad poeple respect us a lot here.


Spiritual Experience: (Reason I was wrong) 
Good Times

So this week I had the privilege to go on splits with Elder Nougeira. He taught me a very important lesson. In the past, I would always pass these two people and I never bothered to make contact with them, but this time around...Elder Noungeira decided to stop and we shared a message with these two people that I always neglected and they loved it. They are married on paper here in Para (which is a miracle) and they have a true desire to come unto Christ. I pre-judged based on their looks. They have tattoos and they didn't look very spiritual but they were completely ready to hear our message and I felt so bad for thinking these two people didn't want the Gospel in their lives...I HOPE ALL OF YOU LEARN FROM ME...and the mistake I made. Everyone deserves to hear our message. If you ever think "Nah, they won't want to hear this" please think again and give it a shot, because it may be EXACTLY what they are looking for. 


People To Pray For:

Jose Maria Silis Larica Jessica Raisa Raquel Bruno Kadija (recent convert needs lots of help) Adalia

Thanks everyone.
Love,
Elder Arevalo 



Monday, November 7, 2016

Everyone in White (Week 60)

The Baptism
 Hey Everyone,

I heard that Daylight savings time has finally come around to all of you this week. Here in Brazil we don't worry about changing the time. Anyway, this week was pretty amazing and here is why:

Fun Facts About New Companion: 
  • He is from Rio de Janeiro, Brazil!
  • He is very new on the mission (1 week in the field)
  • He is a bit shy
  • He is funny!
  • A bit different than me, but I like him! 
I think its funny how both of my sons are from the same place (RIO), but they are both very different people. 
I think this is a sign that I need to go to Rio de Janeiro. Haha! 

Spiritual Experience:
So we planned to meet a family at their home around 7 at night on Saturday. Once we arrived they let us in, and this was our conversation:

Wife:       "Hello Elders Come in"
Me:         "Thank you" 
Father:    "Are you two in any rush to leave right away?
Me:         " No not really you are our last appointment. 
Father:    "Great! Then you two can stay for the "Ceula" (Its like Family Home Evening but for this other religion)

Now, we didn't want the pastor from the other church mad so we tried to get out of it by saying that it was far away and he said 

Father:    "No worries I will take you home after, you are our guest. 

So we stayed. I personally felt uncomfortable, but when we all prayed (I also said a personal prayer), and the spirit comforted me (even during the yelling and all the noises they call praying) and when the pastor tried to explain everything as to why they did what they did...he had no scriptural references.
My New Companion
The spirit guided me to the scriptures...I felt like I needed to at least do my best to explain my beliefs to those around me. I started to share some scriptures (with their permission) and I felt the spirit guide me towards certain ones, and you can see that the people where more interested and they felt the spirit. I know they did and the people liked us a lot better then the other pastor (I don't mean that in a prideful way). 

One man even asked us to give him a blessing haha! So cool! I felt the spirit and it was funny because after I finished talking...no one had anything to say. One more thing...these people who were in the other religion said that they where saying they turned to their church only because of this miracle or something...and then I once again felt prompted to share with them how I realized what I believe to be true. I told them that I prayed and that the Lord confirmed to me that I am on the right path, and that is what we need to do with all of our choices in our lives. 

So happy for these two!
During this entire thing my companion didn't have much to say (mostly because he has only been out here in the field for a week), but the one thing he did say to me was "Elder Arevalo you are crazy and bold. The pastor had no words after you spoke! You where just saying one scripture after other and it was incredible!" 

Marriage:

This week I also had the opportunity to marry a couple named, "Leo and Sulie". They where baptized and they where married last week. The marriage was simple and small, but they didn't care because they were just happy that their family and the president of the branch was there. So they loved it. 


Baptism:

Then there was the baptism. You can see (in the photos) that the family was so happy and so excited to make  ever lasting covenants to the Lord. I felt the spirit that day (for this family) and that they are very happy to be following the Lord. I know for a fact that the Lord has big plans for Leo and his family to be future leaders and a great blessing to other. 

Thursday, November 3, 2016

Companions Are Like A Box Of Chocolates...(Week 59)

Hey Everyone, 

I don't have much time today, so lets get started...
I'm going to miss this guy!



Transfers happened! I am staying here as the District Leader with a new Elder fresh from the MTC who I will be train! His name is Elder Moraes! I'm really sad to see my old companion Elder Ferria leave, but that's how it goes here on the mission. They come and go and the memories of a great Elder are all we have after. 

This past week was great! We got:


6 baptisms 
1 Marriage
AND...I will be training again! I'm so excited! (Elder Moraes)  

Spiritual Experience:


So, when I was teaching Leo and Suelie and their children...they where a little scared about baptism, but they where completely ready! They just where a bit scared, and nervous. I was soon overwhelmed and inspired to open a scripture about continuting til the end, and when I read this scripture...they felt the spirit. I know they did, because I felt it and the spirit was just so SO strong in the room. They all said they will follow the savior and they decided to get baptized, and I know for a fact that they will love there Savior even more. The scriptures have the answer to everything. What a great blessing it is for us!  

My Testimony (Short Version)
My new greenie! I can't wait to serve with him!


I know the church is true. 
I know the Lord has a plan for us and he loves us.
I know that this Gosple changes peoples lives...in the name of Jesus Christ, Amen!

The Mission Presidents Challenge:


As you all read last week. Our mission president gave us a challenge to 4 baptisms...
How is that challenge going for me you ask? Well, so we where in a trio and so we worked 2 areas at the same time. Of the 5 baptisms...my companion and I only get to count 1 for our area, and the other two Elders get to count THE OTHER 4 for their area. So technically we did the challenge, but we won't get recognition for it.
Don't get me wrong...I feel great knowing that I helped them get these baptisms, but I feel kinda sad becuase they didnt give us the blessings for our hard earned work...BUT who knows, maybe God has a better blessing for us. Only time will tell I guess. I just have to keep an eternal perspective and think positively. 

Anyway, I hope you all enjoyed the post, and I hope these are enjoyable for you all to read. I don't write a ton every week, but I do enjoy sharing my favorite moments of the week! Thanks all for reading. Love you all.

Love, 
Elder Arevalo