Querida Família e amigos,
BOM DIA! Good Morning to everyone! Before I go off on random topics and rants as I always do...
I just want to thank all of you who are reading this. It really means a lot to me that so many people love and support me. Please know that although I am focused on the people of Brasil right now, I do take time to think of you!!! I love you all and appreciate the love and support that I receive. And thank you to all those Brasileiros out there reading too! It sure makes me smile to to hear, "Sister Edwards, we found your mission blog!" Thank you, Mom, for keeping it updated.
This week was Awesome. Really it was; no blisters, no dog bites, no hospital, or doctor visits... I am exhausted! That means it was a hardworking successful week! We couldn't have done it with out the members in our ala (ward).
After conference and the call for members to get involved in missionary work, our district leader challenged us to teach 20 lessons with members present. (Normally we teach 5-6 a week with a member present). It was incredible to see the response of the members! Especially the youth! We taught 20 lessons with members this week! It was awesome! It was really neat to listen to their testimonies as they shared the Gospel with their friends and neighbors.
I have to give a shout out to Alana, Thalia and Filipe. WHAT SOLID YOUTH!!!! These young men and women know their Savior. They know their responsiblity here as a member of the church. They know their purpose here on earth. They know their standards, the Gospel and how to be missionaries. They radiate God's love.
Alana is one of the most loving people I have ever met. She is 14 and loves everyone! It is so awesome when she comes out with us because she is not afriad to share what she knows. She will take my planner and begin to schedule return appointments, gather addresses and information and bear her testimony. She listens sincerely to people's concerns and offers advice. She doesn't hesitate to do anything and if she could would spend all day walking the street of Maringa with us.
Thalia also has such great faith. She is 16 and was baptized this past Janurary. She is a great example to her younger brother and little sister. Her family, all recent converts, have truly expereinced the change and peace that the gospel brings to our lives. She too, walks the street with us, contacting and teaching. She rings door bells before we can even catch up! She is quick to think of friends that she wants to share her love of the Book of Mormon with and shares her conversion story with them. Both of these young women are on fire, a true light and example to their peers.
Filipe is 17 and preparing to go on a mission. He will be an incredible missionary. I know it because he already is an incredible missionary. He, along with the other youth, introduces himself and welcomes visitors to church. He come to lessons with us and shares the most powerful testimonies I have ever heard. He loves the way the Savoir loves. He is a ward missionary and magnifies his calling. He goes to seminary without even thinking twice. He is a stong example to the other young men in the ward. He is always thinking of others and is quick to serve. He is worthy of the priesthood he holds and actively uses it with righteousness each sunday when he blesses the sacrament.
All of the youth are heeding the call of our Prophet. When they could be hanging out with friends at night- they are in Seminary. When they could be home or doing what ever during the day after school- they instead, are out teaching with us. Even more, is that they want to. They make time for the Lord. I am amazed at this generation of youth and their valiance, diligence and faith.
This past Sunday, we made a sign up sheet for members to sign up to come teaching with us. The youth and young adults attacked this opportunity! We also handed out little sheets of paper for members to write down a friend or neighbor that they thought would be good for us to visit. During Ward Council the ward auxiliaries carefully planned how to get all the members, recent converts, and investigators to Stake Conference at the Stake Center next week. This ward, Maringa Cidade Novo, is heeding the call of our Prophet and Apostles.
I love you all and I know that our Father in Heaven Loves you. We are his Children. We chose to follow
him and to become like him and he is showing us how. Heed the call of the Prophet. The time is now! Our Savior is coming! The work is Hastening and will continue to hasten. Every member a missionary! I would love to hear about your missionary experiences this week if you would like to share them with me:) I promise that if we make time for the Lords work first he will bless us with time to do the other things life requires.