Monday, December 21, 2015

Feliz Natal Everyone!! 12/21/15

It is currently POURING rain as I type this to you, and I´m sweating and being eaten alive by mosquitos :) Not exactly the Christmas I´m used to, but I´m am so happy to be here!

We got our two new sisters this week! Sister Crapo is an American from Murray, Utah, and she is training Sister Bastos, a Brazilian who is awaiting her visa to go to Temple Square! So we´re all helping her learn English and she´s helping me learn Portuguese! They´re both really sweet girls and although our house is a little cramped, they are super fun and easy to live with :)
 It was hard for Sister Bundy and I to split the area and give half of our investigators to the other Sisters. But we are excited to see so much growth in our area(s) and we now get to work some parts of Cidade Lider that we had never even been to before! Also, we removed our ugly, cockroach-infested couch! So we now have plenty of room for our morning Zumba sessions :) We had five people doing salsa with us this morning! So fun!

On Saturday, after our English class, we had a missionary activity with the ward and we gave out Christmas cards to people in a park and in a big farmer´s market! It was super effective and the members seemed to love it!!

Yesterday was a crazy day for us! We left early and went to a member´s house to use their car to pick up investigators, none of which could come to church. So we went to the chapel, introduced the new sisters to everyone and then I sat up on the stand to give a talk. The meeting started and they didn´t have anyone to lead the music, so I got up and led the music for the meeting. As I was leading the opening hymn, Mar walked in with a friend that we had met the day before, Rob. To my surprise, Rob proceeded to lay down on the ground of the chapel and begin praying. This must have been a custom in his church, but for me, it was quite a surprise! After the sacrament, I got up and gave my talk, speaking about the Restoration of the Gospel of Jesus Christ and what a blessing it is in our lives. I looked up halfway through my talk and was surprised to see Mar video-taping my talk! Haha he´s a great guy :) At the end of my talk, I started talking about my family, and pretty much lost it in front of everyone. I miss you guys :)

After sacrament meeting, Sister Bundy recieved a blessing (she´s been really sick) and we went to Gospel Principles, where the teacher asked me and Sister Bundy to teach the lesson. Sister Bundy couln´t talk, so I taught the whole class by myself! Heavenly Father helped a ton, and I made it through. The lesson topic was The Atonement, and the Spirit was very strong. I know that Jesus Christ suffered the price not only for our sins, but for every sickness, sadness, or struggle that we´ll ever face. What an amazing gift!! 

After Relief Society, the Relief Society Presidency said that they had a surprise for us! They then brought out basket after basket filled with chocolate and candy and crackers and cookies and everything delicious you can have here!! I might have cried (again). The outpouring of love that I have felt from the dear people here is more than I think I will ever feel in my life. Being away from my family this Christmas is one of the hardest things I´ve ever done, but the love I feel here make up for every sacrifice. God shines on the people of Brazil.

I pray that you are all doing well and that you are feeling as much love from the Savior and from people around you as I am this Christmas! And I hope you are able to return and reflect that love as well. Christ truly is the embodiment of love, so as you celebrate Him this week, don´t forget to love :)

I truly do love you all. And I´m so grateful for the great outpouring of support that I received from all of you this Christmas! May God bless you! All my love and then some, Sister Doyle

  • A beautiful tree near my apartment.
  • An amazing mural painted on a wall in our area.
  • Adorable baby of one of our newly baptized sisters from Africa.
  • Huge fruit! Jaca kinda tastes like sprite haha ...that´s the closest thing I can think of. I only tried the seed though.