Saturday, September 4, 2010

END OF MISSION: *Wrapping things up

"NOW behold, a marvelous work is about to come forth among the children of men. Therefore, O ye that embark in the service of God, see that ye serve him with all your heart, might, mind and strength, that ye may stand blameless before God at the last day. Therefore, if ye have desires to serve God ye are called to the work; For behold the field is white already to harvest; and lo, he that thrusteth in his sickle with his might, the same layeth up in store that he perisheth not, but bringeth salvation to his soul; And faith, hope, charity and love, with an eye single to the glory of God, qualify him for the work. Remember faith, virtue, knowledge, temperance, patience, brotherly kindness, godliness, charity, humility, diligence. Ask, and ye shall receive; knock, and it shall be opened unto you. Amen." (D&C 4)

"How beautiful upon the mountains are the feet of him that bringeth good tidings, that publisheth peace; that bringeth good tidings of good, that publisheth salvation; that saith unto Zion, Thy God reigneth! Thy watchmen shall lift up the voice; with the voice together shall they sing: for they shall see eye to eye, when the LORD shall bring again Zion." (Isaiah 52:7-8)

Areas Max has served in

14. Nonoai with E. Sampaio 7/27/10-9/9/10

13. Guaíba with E. Benício 6/15/10-7/27/10

12. Arco-Iris with E Mattos 5/3/10-6/14/10

11. OPENING Arco-Iris with E. Bangerter 3/30/10-5/3/10

10. Pelotas with E. Bangerter 2/10/10-3/30/10

9. Pelotas with Elder Pourre 1/6/10-2/10/10 (Zone Leader)

8. Rio Grande with E. Horrocks 10/14/09-1/6/10 (District Leader)

7. Rio Grande with E. Biscoff 7/21/09-10/14/09

6. Cavalhada with E. Romeiro 6/9/09-7/21/09

5. Cavalhada with E. Piccin 3/24/09-6/9/09

4. Cavalhada with E. Headley 2/4/09-3/24/09

3. Office with E. Fernandes 12/31/08-2/4/09

2. Cristal with Elder Jones 11/19/08-12/31/08

1. Brazil MTC with E. Watts 9/17/08-11/19/08

"We are a tiny fraction when compared to the billions of people on earth.

- Boyd K. Packer

Returned With Honor September 9, 2010

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

EIGHTH AREA: *A light in the darkness

"So everything is great here, well we are not seeing much success, but we are giving our all and we know we are learning and growing so much together each and every day, Elder Sampaio and I. I love him, he is so great and this week we had some great spiritual experiences and lessons. Almost everybody that we have been teaching just doesn't want to progress and it is sad, but we are focusing now on finding new investigators and families and teaching them and to have a new teaching group and so we've just gotta go forward with faith."

"So Tatiane is the closest to being baptized, but we are feeling that the opposition from her fam is taking its toll on her and she might be slipping, we need to talk with her again. She wasnt able to come to church this week and so we will try and pass by there tonight. So ya know that guy, Perseu. We were planning to have his baptism this sat. but we just feel that he really has mental probs and so we will try and get a hold of the Psychiatrist and mark an appointment. Of course he came to church and he just loves us and he is living the commandments, but it is just so hard to teach him cuz he just cant seem to focus on one subject and we cant know his real motive for everything. So yeah, its a long story, but I will leave it at that. So that fam we were teaching just cant seem to accept everything and so we stopped teaching them as of yesterday and if they want to they will come to church, it is a long story too and sad really, but its part of the work and we have to just stay happy and keep a good attitude."

"We met a young kid who was baptized a few months back and he was the only one baptized in his fam and we marked to pass by and teach him and try and meet his parents and get to know them and so we passed one afternoon this last week, it was just this last saturday and he accepted us in his house and he never wanted to learn anything with the other missionaries, but he accepted a message and Elder Sampaio just left a message real quick, a scripture and he ended and I felt that he was ready to hear the message of the restoration and so we started teaching and he had never been taught before and from the very beginning I could feel the spirit so strong that I was tingling from my feet to my head and we taught together and testified of the 1st vision and I felt the spirit the strongest during that and we gave him his own BOM and he had never even looked at it, just heard of it and he thanked us and we could see that he was touched and felt something different and felt the spirit so we asked him if he felt somethin and he said he that it was the best moment he had had in the last few months! It was incredible and we testified of the spirit and the reality of him and the blessings of the gospel for his family and we ended with a hymn and he was almost in tears and he just thanked us from the bottom of his heart and we prayed and left and marked to come back this week and he wasnt able to go to church yesterday, but he said for sure he will this week. So it was such a special experience for us and helped us with everything and to animate us and to strengthen our testimonies that much more."

EIGHTH AREA: *Rough week

"Elder Sampaio and I after a long, rough day this week (Aug. 23, 2010) and to make things worse, my nose bled, ha ha! No, but it was funny."

"(Aug 2, 2010) We taught a family this week of 10 people with two of their neighbors so that was sweet and such a spiritually powerful lesson and it was great, but it turns out the mom found out later and doesn't want her kids to learn and come to church, cuz she wasn't there when we taught, just the dad with some kids and a grandma with a bunch of kids and a couple neighbor kids, so it was great."

"(Aug 23, 2010) So we are still teaching that big fam from the picture and it was hard this week cuz it is hard for them to change and where they live is so lost in the world and they are too and in the middle of it all and they had a b-day party sat. night and there was alcohol and dancing and so they all stayed up all night and no one came to church and it is hard, we just need to have patience. It is sad, cuz the mom is not fulfilling our invites and she wont even read the BOM and pray, but she said a prayer with us all this week and it was great. We taught them all about the plan of salvation when we were there and took that pic. It was such a spiritual lesson and it was great but it was sad with this weekend and everything that happened and so their baptism will have to wait and the two oldest girls received answers to their prayers and they have testimonies it is just so hard for them to try and escape the world where they live cuz everybody is so lost there and they are right in the middle of it, but we have faith in them and they will be the pioneers from their fam. So this week we were teaching them in the morn before lunch and their neighbor came in and he listened to our message, we talked to him and we invited him to listen to our message and he was really interested and so we marked another day and it was great and he was prepared to accept the gospel and his name is Guilherme and he is 21 and he is great. So after a lot of stress and confusion, we were able to grab a sweet guy from our ward and we ran to pick him up right in time for Sac. Mtg. and he loved it and came with his lil daughter and we went to his house in the afternoon and he said he felt different and really liked it and we told him it was the spirit and he has already read a lot of the BOM and understands the stories very well. So we marked his baptism for the 4th of September and he accepted and we will do everything to prepare him and help him be baptized on the 4th. So this week was great because of him and a lot of other things and so we are excited."

"This is from this morn (August 23, 2010) when we were studying and I put my elbow on the table and it collapsed and so we took a pic and I thought it was pretty funny."

"Two other elders in our ward, Elder Shäfler and Elder Zaguette, they are both Brazilians and Elder Bangerter trained Elder Shäfler in the same area here in our ward and he ended his mission here too! We ate lunch with that young couple and they were both missionaries and have a little boy now. "

"So I dunno if I have told ya'll bout a man that we have been teaching named Perseu. So it is sad, cuz we think he is literally crazy and has some mental probs but it has been 4 weeks that he has come to church everyweek and he is living all of the commandments and stopped drinking alcohol and coffee and he lives alone and so he is so alone that he has gone a lil crazy, we dont know if he was always like that. So we have been teaching him, but he likes us so much and everytime we talk to him he talks so much and it is so hard to teach him, but he reads the BOM everyday and prays and so we talked to the bishop yesterday about him and there is nothing holding back his baptism so our district leader will interview him and see if he is ready and we will have his baptism on Saturday. We will also try and teach with a man in the Cavalhada ward that I already know that is a Psychiatrist to see if he needs treatment. "

"We are also working with that same girl, Tatiane that is so smart and she came to church yesterday in a dress and took her piercing out of her nose and we hadnt even said anything to her. She is great and she had some doubts so last night we went there and helped her with her doubts and did our best to explain them and so we are planning for her baptism for this saturday, she is ready. It is just hard for her cuz she is alone and her parents dont like the church and they are very catholic but Tatiane has a testimony and her lil sis listened to our message yesterday and she is interested but has depression and its hard to get her to come to church. Tatiane came to church yesterday and she loved it. We are planning on doing an FHE with two fams tomorrow night with Tatiane and so it will be great."

EIGHTH AREA: *Helping to roll the stone

"So we had two days of new trainings from Pres. Swenson and every mission in the world is receiving new trainings and so it was different to put em into play, but I have been gaining a testimony of them this week and we had a lot of great experiences this week."

Luis Phillipe, Elder Sampaio, and Max

"Luis Phillipe is the young boy whose grandma is a less-active member and we are teaching her and her grandboys, they are great and are reading the BOM and praying and they are gaining testimonies and it is helping them out alot with the death of their mom."

EIGHTH AREA: *Lots and lots of people to teach

"I just love the gospel. The gospel is everything in our lives, absolutely EVERYTHING!!! The gospel of Jesus Christ, restored through the prophet Joseph Smith is the only way we can return to live with God in families and be happy forever, i know that this is true and the spirit testifies to me each and everyday and I am so grateful for each and every blessing that the gospel brings into our lives and the lives of our family."

People Elder Kirschman & Elder Sampaio are teaching in Nonoai:

Elaine: a single mom with 3 young boys: Donato thats 16 but works on Sunday mornings :( Francisco is 14 and Fabrício is 12.

"We are also teaching the fam of the mom, Elaine and her boys. We are planning the baptism of her boys for this sat. cuz she needs some more time cuz we found out she still smokes :( but we will continue to help her and her boys are ready for baptism this week. :) They are great. Fabrício thats 12 came to church all by himself on his bike and he lives far away, he is such a great kid and we sat with him at church and he has a white shirt and tie that he used yesterday and he is ready to just be with all of his friends passing the sacrament. He always sits behind the deacon's bench alone until after the sacrament when his friends come and sit by him and yesterday we sat by him"

Tatiane: a 17 year old girl that the other missionaries were teaching before we got here and she is great and came to church yesterday and it was her second time to we are helping her to prepare for baptism too and gain a testimony of the BOM. She lives with her grandma and she is VERY catholic and so she is scared of her, but it will all work out. :)

"So we are also working with a great girl named Tatiane that is 17 and she is very smart and understands so well and she has already been to church twice, but didnt come yesterday, she was ready but didnt end up coming cuz the members that passed by called but i guess she didnt here. But we taught her on sat. night she has been reading the BOM and she has been praying and she has been receiving answers to her prayers :) We invited her to be baptized this sat. and she was hesitant because her whole fam is Catholic, but we invited her to pray to know if she should and she said she will follow the answer she receives. She has a lot of faith, wow. It is so great to hear my companion's testimony and to hear him share it with her to help her out because he is the only member of his family and today he is a member for 2 years to the date. Wow, my comp. is the man and he has such a strong testimony and he is an example to me of faith and sacrifice and obedience. His whole family was against his baptism and when he was baptized he lived with his dad and his dad kicked him out of his house and so he went to serve a part time mission in another state and ended up staying for 6 months and went home and now he is here. He bore his testimony to Tatiane and the spirit was so strong and you could see it touching her and she could relate and so it was a great experience. We will go there tonight to see how she is and what she is planning."

Francielle and Katielle: Fran is 16 and Kat is 14. We are teaching all of their lil bros and sis and their mom, they are great. We are planning to bring everyone to church next week.

We also started teaching an old woman that is less active for years and is from another city and she lives with her son in law and 3 grandkids and we are helping the 2 boys prepare for baptism, they are 13 and 10, Luis Felipe and Luis Roberto. They are so great.

Daniel & Carla: So we are also teaching a great young couple with a really cute new baby. They are Daniel and Carla and they came to church yesterday!

"We have a family home evening with the two grandboys and their grandma member and a great family in the ward, we are excited!"

EIGHTH AREA: *Nonoai with Elder Sampaio July 27, 2010

Max is headed to open a new area and train a new missionary - he has come a long way!
"So guess where i'm at? I'm in a new area in a ward called Nonoai that is right next to Cavalhada in Porto Alegre! Ha ha, i am right here almost where i was last year.. its crazy weird, last year i did two divisions in this area and met some of the members so i remembered and it was easier to pick up the area, but with our map its all good and the area is easy enough with the map and everything is going great! :) I am with a new missionary in his first transfer named Elder Sampaio and he is great! (you pronounce that Sam-pie-oo) he is from São Paulo and before the full time mish, he already served two 3 month short time missions in Riberão Preto that is another city in the state of Sao Paulo and has its own mission. Sao Paulo is a city and a state in Brasil just to let ya know.. so he is great and already knows how to do pretty much everything and its like he has been here for 6 months so it is great. He reminds me so much of Russ so its sweet to be with him."

"On tuesday we went to the bus station here in Porto Alegre and Pres got there with all the new missionaries and he introduced all of us and it was great and we were off and so we got here but there was already a companionship here, now the ward has two and so we got the area book and they told us about some of the investigators and we were off and it has been great. "

SEVENTH AREA: *Pictures from Guaíba

"It was a pretty rough week with a lil progress in our area, but it turned out great cuz we found a great new lady with her two lil kids and they came to church and loved it and they have their baptism marked for the 14th of August and they are a great lil fam. The mom is Deborah and she is a single mom and has two lil kids, Luiza thats 8 and Gustavo thats 3. They are way cute and Luiza will be baptized with her mom. So they were the highlight of our week cuz the work has been pretty hard lately with a lot of great ppl that just dont progress and probs, but its just another short phase and we just have to keep the faith and the smile on our faces! :)"