Brexton has been sent off to Vitoria, Brazil for his LDS mission.

Monday, July 6, 2015

Monday July 6th, 2015 ~ The last letter

Well this last week has been super exciting, all of the hardest challenges are always at the end, but the Lord upholds the righteous. So I heard about President Packer, I found out firday night. That was a little tough, haha only one more week in the mission and so I wont be able to watch his funeral. But it all is according to the Lords Plan. Tough but all works out for the best. Its interesting because two of the Apostles who had always been such a steady anchor, and a firm foundation are now on the other side of the veil. They bore such powerful testemonies about families and have sealed their testimonies. It was nice though because thursday we had a leadership meeting in Vitória and the theme was The Proclamation to the World about the Family. And I was chosen on spot to give a talk during the meeting. Haha my companion didnt tell me the theme until the hour before the meeting. But i enjoyed the experience and thankfully I had the proclamation in my planner, so I could read it. I really enjoyed the talk because i could feel the spirit testifying. That's tough about kiki though, I'm glad she got a blessing. The doctors will know what to do, she just has to take good care of it!

So other news flash, this is my last email. Next week if i send an email it will be super quick. We spend the whole day in trainings with President Young on Monday. So....this is it. the last one. As for baptisms, other than that we have one man we are teaching that could be baptized this week. He's 83 and he's the dad of a member who always takes care of us. He doesnt understand too well whats happening but wants to change his life and come unto Christ so we'll see how it goes. He's really old and doesnt really understand me when I talk so...we'll just go forward with faith. We have another man we are teaching, his name is Dionisio. We met him last week on monday when we were leaving our area to go to FHE. He had taken 4 bottles of medicine and drank a lot of alcohol and was smoking. He explained that he would wake up the next morning because he had taken to medicine to commit suicide and that he was doing that so that no one woould suffer any more with his addiction to crack. So we talked with him a lot, gave him a blessing and took him home. Since that day we have been teaching him every day. Its not easy because he has addictions that are really strong. But the change that is happening in him is wonderful. Wednesday we almost didnt even recognize him as he passed by us in the park. He had cut his beard, and hadnt used anything that day. He had a light the radiated from him. He had a relapse on the weekend and didnt go to church with us because of it but slowly he's changing, He is having a light enter in his life and in his eyes. I love him a ton and I know that he will have to struggle for a while before he is completely free but it reminds me of that video the mormon message the Hope of God's light. I would love to show it to him but it doesnt exsist in portuguese. They are taking forever to translate the mormon messages.  But I know it will all work out well. 

I love the mission, I love that I have been able to see so many changes in the Children of Heavenly Father. I love the Gospel, it truly is the light that illuminates us because it is Christ's. IF we live the gospel and follow the Lord's light we will find eternal happiness and joy that will abide with us forever. The Love of God fills our souls and literally burns in our Heart. I know that God Lives, that Jesus is His son. That we are all children of God and that He has an eternal plan for each one of us. He Loves us and we can feel His Love keeping His commandments. If we obey His will we will feel His love and have eternal life. The greatest gift of God. I know this work is true. I know it is His work and that He calls the meek and the willing to fullfill it. Young men who are all about 20 are doing a wonderful work and a wonder along with the young women called to do this glorious work. This is God's purpose, to bring to pass the immortality and eternal life of man. The Book of Mormon is true and we have living prophets today. President Monson is a living prophet of God and Jospeh was the prophet who restored the true church of God here on earth. I love you all and miss you so much and I am so grateful that i was called to represent the Lord and found worthy to do so for these 2 years. I love my mission and I love you all and leave with you my testimony, In the sacred name of Jesus Christ our Lord and Reedemer. Amen.

Com amor profundo,
Elder Brexton Simonsen
Brasil Vitória Mission

ta ai meu querido

Monday, June 29, 2015

Monday June 29th, 2015

Well this week has actually been really good, spiritually speaking. As for our investigators and money...not so much. We are working super hard and doing everything we can but we haven't had investigators go to church for a long time. So we don't have any one progressing. But it will all work out in the end. The big focus of this last week was following the Spirit and trusting in the Lord. Following all the little promptings and becoming like Christ. Doing what He would do and being exactly obedient to the Spirit. It was a super good experience and full of lots of love and warmth and we had a couple of really cool contacts and some really spiritual lessons. But we have to keep working. Being dilligent and keeping the Lord in our hearts. I was doing really good until yesterday afteroon. Haha I have only 2 more sundays here and everyone keeps reminding me. But its been a huge blessing being here. I had the opportunity to give a talk yesterday, I talked about praying with faith. Its a part of chapter 4 in Preach my Gospel. I really enjoy this chapter and have been thinking about my prayers lately and how they need to be better and how i must constantly submit my will to the Lords. Its been a little tough because....well I've been a little sick prayers at night have been a little tough. I've had a ton of runny nose and to pray when you bow your head and your nose cloggs, it gets a little hard to breath and stay in that position for  a while. Its all good though, I only had the I stayed home one night and slept and went to the doctor and got medicine. then another elder got what I had and so this morning we cleaned the house really well. But other than that we havent had too much that's happened. 

The miracle of the week was......the day after the day that I was really sick we went home so that I could take a nap for about 2 hours and when I woke up I was feeling even worse that i had the day before. so we called the other elders and did a division with them. I laid down for about another half an hour and then told the missionary that was with me that I was fine and that we were going to leave and go visit his appointment. He looked at me bewildered and said the he thought we would spend the rest of the night at home. But I really felt that we needed to leave and go work. So we started going and we were walking up a stair case and someone called out to us and turned out to be a contact that they couldnt find her house. So we talked with her and shared a really spiritual lesson with her and then continued our climb to the other appointment. When we got there she wasnt there but her daughter was (she is about 30) so we started teaching her. And the lesson was super spiritual as well. The Spirit was really strong and guiding our words. We invited them to be baptized  but because she has already been baptized in another church she didnt accept baptism. But the miracle was that the Spirit testified so strongly and that we felt such a great joy and that even though she didnt accept we know we did what we need to do. The Lord is at the head of this work. It's His work and we must follow His Spirit to do it. I'm so grateful for my mission and for all that I've learned and for my leaders here. I'm so grateful for what the Lord has done for me and has helped me to become. I love you all and miss you so much.

Love Elder Simonsen

Monday, June 22, 2015

Monday June 22nd, 2015

Haha it totally forgot that it was fathers day................I don't have any notion of time any more. All the days are the same, all things are always in the same routine but its all good. This week was fun, we had divisions with the assistents and I went with Elder Gingrich, who is going home with me. It was really fun and interesting to see how much he has changed since I knew him when I was in Linhares.But not too much has been going on, we are working hard and trying to do the best we can. Every week is super tough, its been a while since I've had real investigators now. Hopefully we can get some this week. We are working in an area thats a little far away from the chapel but its a way nicer area and I know that its where the Lord wants us to work. I've started rereading or continuing  Jesus the Christ and really working hard to develop christ like attributes. Rereading my journal entries from the beginning of my mission and trying to really trust in the Spirit and preach the gospel. I want to give everything I have in these last 3 weeks that I have here I want to do the best I can. So I'm working really hard on obeying the Spirit. For example my companion this week shared a scriptures that talks about Nephi and Laban and how Nephi obeyed the Spirit and killed laban. So I've been thinking about that and how sometimes we lose that courage to follow all of the promptings of the Spirit and give little excuses. But how when we really follow with Faith the promptings of the Spirit we can do miracles. We need to have faith nothing doubting. Doubt is the enemy of faith. It deystroys it. When Satan tempted Christ after those 40 days fasting the temptation was IF thou art the Christ. He was trying to make Him doubt. He was trying to weaken the Lords faith. We must trust in the Lord Completely. IF we follow the Spirit in all things we will never be wrong. The Lord supports His children and Loves them. I know that he Cares and loves every single one of us. I know that He hears our prayers and He always prepares a way for us to accomplish what it is that he commands us. We must only choose to follow Him. 

A cool experience was that last night I had the privilidge to run to another city to do an interview for an investigator who wanted to be baptized. She had to be interviewed by President Young but because of the time schedule President did the part that he needed of the interview and we had to finish the interview. So last night after church I got on a bus and spend the whole afternoon traveling and after the interview I got to meet the other person who was going to be baptized that night. His name is afonso and it was the sisters that were teaching him. He is a man who is so humble so grateful and truly was shining with the Light of Christ. He was super excited for his baptism. And after his baptism I was cleaning the bathroom and He came out after changing and you could see that he had been crying. I gave him the biggest hug I could. He is a more elderly man about in his late 60's but he was so happy. I love seeing the People so happy. I'm so grateful for him and his testimony and the Love of that Branch. I know that they will take good care of him.

As for my pant size, I have no idea.....I've gotten quite skinny. The pants that I couldnt close in the beginning of my mission, my gray ones, I have to use a belt now or they are super loose and low. So.....when I get back we need to eat a ton but it needs to be a slow start and progression.......but I'll gain it all back again. So it would probably be better wait until i get back to get pants..... but its all good. The Lords errand has other rewards that physical weight. I love you all and miss you so much and cant wait to see you all soon.

Love Elder Simonsen

Monday, June 8, 2015

Monday June 8th, 2015 *pictures too*

Alrigthy so this week has been super crazy. First of all thank you so much for your letter. It really means a lot to me. And I think that for college it will be the air force but just so you know byu has the army as well. The base is in salt lake. But It will all work out really well. 

So I'm not sure where to start but talking about the full tank of gas. I'm trying to do that. I have always know that you have to prepare for the next steps in your life. Like when i was at the mtc, I could see those who prepared and those who didnt. So i'm working on that. studying those christ like attributes....I study it a lot but I need to apply it better. But yes its super sad to finish the mission. I'll explain I've been doing everything possible to be exactly obedient and honestly its leaving me so stressed its incredible because I'm literally having to push everyone in our house to do it.....but I'm working on doing it relaxed and how Christ would do it, so saturday, we left at 10 o clock because I cant do language study anymore (honestly I never did....) because we end up staying way too long at home but saturday was hard, after lunch we walked and walked and walked and walked and walked and because it was a holiday no one was home. 3 day weekend and so, every one left. Then President Young was here because we aren't a stake, we are a district with branches and they were having district conference. So I suggested that maybe we could have sister Young participate in a lesson with an investigator. A marvilous idea. but one problem, when saturday got her we literally had not a single investigator. Like not only did everyone leave the city but we didnt even have investigators to leave the I was really sad because I really wanted to have sister Young participate in a lesson with us because she is so spiritual. But our areas has so many hills that she wouldn't be able to go with us. So then we spent the whole day trying to find investigators, and we were having no success. But then I got a call, and my recent convert from linhares was at our chapel. Juliano who We baptized in Linhares, who all the missionaries who have passed there after me have always told me about how good he is and how he is an amazing member. SO I couldn't go there until night because of the meetings but, luckly the day turned around and we started finding people who said maybe they would go to church and we managed to teach a couple people. Then at night we practically ran across the city to the church so that I could see him. When we got to the chapel all of the members from Colatina started to say hi and then all the members that were present from linhares recognized me and started giving me hugs. And then We run up stairs to see Juliano and when we found him at the end He was going with President Young

to be interviewed......TO GO ON A MISSION!!!!!! So I told President that he is my recent convert and it was a really cool experience. He is 27 so he has to receive First Presidency approval to go on a mission. I really hope that he goes. I was just super happy and super grateful. (also forgot to mention on thursday we went to vitoria for a lidership meeting and afterwards got permission to visit some of our recent converts from Cobilandia and we met with Jocimar, and a couple of members in the street, and an old investigator. ) It was really cool to see everyone that I hadnt seen in sooooo long and hear that they are all well. Some aren't active in the church any more but all with time. I was just super grateful and then running home at night on saterday We walk by the theater and i see a sign and I literally stop walking.....Jurrassic Word.......yeah it was a good day. 

So then in the district conference we got to see even more members from linhares, I got to take a picture with juliano and during conference President called us up to the front and explained Juliano's situation And it was good because my old companion who found juliano with me, was also in the conference. IT was a really good blessing. So yes the hardest thing now is to remain calm. I get so excited I just want to take off running. So many good things are happening and I know that I have to stay dilligent. I know I have to keep doing the right things and the blessings will keep coming. that there are so many other hardships I will have in my life and that there will be even greater blessings and that really our Heavenly Father has been really good to me. I'm so very grateful and I'm so very excited. BUt I know where the Spirit is, I know He is calm and meek, and soothing. ANd I have to seek His guidance and always be worthy of His companionship. I know that things will only get tougher, especially after the mission and in the real world. But i know that through good habits and following the counsel of the Prophets and Apostles we will be safe and in the right path. Seek the Lord, Remember the Temple, and always do good works. I love this gospel and I love my Savior. I love His Love. I miss you all so much and sorry I didnt write that much and maybe its all jumbled but please, tell dad that this message is for him to. ANd sorry that I havent written him yet. But I cannot wait to give you all a big giant hug. And tell Talon that I loved his tie sunday. I love you all and miss you so much.

Love Elder Simonsen
Helaman 5:12

Monday, June 1, 2015

Monday June 1st, 2015

Alrighty so, I'm emailing late because this morming the email wasnt working but it looks like you all are having a ton of fun. That's really cool that President sent a letter to you. I really love him a lot, he is really inspired. This week has been pretty crazy, it was the last week of the transfer and so we were running a lot. But this is the last transfer now. Its weird how fast things are going and its getting harder to not feel pressured with the little time left. But I know that now is the moment to be dilligent and to endure to the end. Keep a good head on the shoulders and go forward with faith. Make this last transfer the best. I wasnt transfered so it will be a lot easier to work because I already know the missionaries and the area so it will be good. I'm still with elder Barreto. Haha i trained him about a year back and know he will be my last companion. We are growing and learning a ton. Especially about obedience but i really love this area. Colatina is a super beautiful city and the branch is an amazing branch. There are tons of really cool people here. Oh btw add daliane and other people from Colatina, Espirito Santo if you have time. 

As for the study, to be honest the last 2 weeks I havent been able to have a lot of good studying because we have been running a lot doing divisions and its cut into the personal study time. But still the days that I got to study have been really good. But today, Elder McDown was trying to figure out what stuff he was going to leave in the house and he put his big preach my gospels out. So I picked up the english one and started reading it a little. Its been a while since I've been able to really sit down and read it in english. And I started to read chapter 6 and felt very strongly again that I need to focus on this chapter. I need to become like Christ and become like Him. So I think I'll be studying that this next week. I've studied quite a bit about Cornelius in acts 10 and 11 and I've studied some of John as well as jacob 2-4. Its just starting to hit me that in a little bit, this will all be over. The thing i've been doing for the last 2 years every day, will be over and then I will have to go back to normal life. Its just a little strange. I'm trying not to think too much about it but everyonce in a while I remember. But I know the Lord will help me and that I will endure and keep working hard until the moment they release me. I just have to stay calm.

As for hearing about Elder Perry, i found out yesterday at church. they anounced it at the pulpit. I had no idea, for me he seemed one of the healthiest of them. It came out of no where but I know that the Lord has a time and a season for everyone and that it has been a while since an Apostle of the Lord has passed on. I really loved him though, and I know i didnt know him that well but it was nice to see his big smile. 

Thanks so much for the pictures, they are really pretty. Kiara and Brooklyn have changed so much. They are both really pretty. and the pictures from disney looked really cool.

As for the biggest lesson i've learned. How to pray. how to really talk to the Lord and to learn to trust in Him completely and that He has a plan. How to become like He is, and to feel His love for His children and us. To realize how many blessings he has given us and how everything is literally for us. I know that the things I've learned in the mission are here to help me prepare for the rest of my life and to help prepare me to enter into His presence. I'm so grateful for my mission and all that He's done for me and all that you and dad do for me. I love you both so much and miss you all.

Love Elder Simonsen

study charity and Love

Monday, May 25, 2015

Monday May 25, 2015

Well, alrighty then. I dont know where to begin or what to say or even what to do. I dont have any final plans for my life decisions and have no money at all. Literally. I have 120 dollars from the money you all sent over the 2 years but yeah. Its all good. All works out well. I dont know what i'm going to do. The only thing that i know with all certainy is what i need to study and where i need to go. As for the Air Force, i dont know with all certainty. I was talking with the assistants this week and it was an interesting experience. I just know that I need to study the middle East and that in the end I want to be a BYU Professor. should be good. I would like to go back and spend time with you all. It would be perfect for me. Especially because that jus something I want to do. But we'll just have to see how it all goes. Focus on the mission and maybe at night after prayer I'll try to figure the stuff out. But should be fine, the Lord always provides a way. Just sometimes isnt the one we want or the easiest in the short term but the long term is the best (eternity).

Haha as for morgan she sent me an email today, I havent read it but its all good. I really dont need updates on the people there with you all. I trust the Lord. As for dad, that not good that he's not getting better. Has he asked for a blessing? I'm fine though, I  have a cough and its been really cold here at night but its all good. I got my temple recommend renewed and I'll have to renew it again before i go home, He could only give me a 3 month recomend, so this month, next month and in july has to be renewed. So It feels really good to have a temple recommend again, passed 25 day without and it is just better to have one and to not worry. But things are really good here. We are working a ton, and trying to help the missionaries. We had a zone conference where President gave a training, and he showed part of that film the church made about the Mormons. It was really good. The confference was super spiritual and i think one of the best (if not the best in my mission) I really enjoyed it. Alrighty I don't have too  much time but i'll send pictures today. I 've been studying not as much this week, We did a ton of divisions and because of this we had to travel a bit and prepare for the conference and we didnt have as much time to study but I'm still working on christ like attributes and I studied President Eyring's talk and chapter 10 of PMG. The Spirit has been really good this week and I've learned a lot. I love you all and miss you tons. Mom its all good, just relax, breathe, pray and let the Lord take control. I'm working on these things but I'll get the answer when He is ready to give it to me and when I'm finaly ready to do His will. I'm happy courtney has all these things working out for her and that it will be in a beautiful house of our Father. It will be an amazing experience and will help her a ton. He seems like an amazing guy and that he will really take care of her. Send me pictures when he proposes. I love you all and I miss you all so much. Trust in the Lord with all your heart and he will guide you for good.

Love Elder Simonsen

Monday, May 18, 2015

Monday May 18th, 2015

Sounds like it was a pretty crazy week. I can only imagine how it would be to be at the beach. Its been super cold here and for the last 2 day I used a long sleeve shirt. I'm sleeping with 2 sheets and a blanket.....Its pretty cold.....and rainy but its been really good. So as for investigators and people we are we really only 2 investigators. And they arent married...BUT we had a super funny lesson with them the other day about marriage ;) They are an amazing couple, well advanced in their age and already divorced. They are together for about a year now but we were there responding the wifes questions on saterday, and we taught the 3rd lesson about the gospel of Jesus Christ, and we got to the part about enduring to the end. And the Though came to talk about the temple, which usually we dont do because we spend so much time talking about baptism and helping them understand how it needs to be done the right way with the right authority and what not. So I pulled out the pictures of the temple I keep in my bible (haha i only have 2 now, my fort lauderdale picture....well an investigator asked for was either give her one or lose all 3. I still have the new ogden temple and the orlando)) but we were talking about the temple and how there you are married for all time and eternity and all that fun stuff and she looks at me and asks: So in your church how does it work when there are 2 people divorced....and so I replied, "Well, there is a commandment called the Law of Chastity.....and began to explain how we must be married and she looks right at her "husband" and he is there with big eyes haha they are an older couple but they were joking around. We think they will get married....they havent took the decision exactly but are truly a special couple and have decided that they will continue attending the church meetings and want to fullfill the church standards. So Its a lot of fun.

Other than that we are trying to work in our area, find new investigators but no one is going to church and those who were are managing to more or less teach, arent married (other couples....) so maybe we will have some marriages.....maybe but we walked but the catholic catherdral the other day and they had a super rich marriage going on. It was pretty impressive, butttttttt.........i think the temple is still pretty good. Oh I dont think I ever told you but here in Brazil you have to get married leagaly before you can marry in the temple. They dont recognize marriage in the temple as a legal binding contract...or something. So here everyone marries first and then goes to the temple. But I really love this area and the members and the missionaries. Its a really good area and really special. Now we only need to work on having time to work in our area......but this week should be fine.

As for talking with courtney and trevor, he seems really good. She was really excited to show me him. She said that I would really like him. Sounds like he's doing all the good stuff and seems really honarable, so who knows. But Court said that she wont be there when I get home, they will still be in school because of the semester terms....oh well I'll just have to go up and visit her. Haha I will proabably have to go hitch hiking. BUt eventually I'd get there and make it back. Its funny i miss her a ton. And I can tell she is missing me as well. Maybe she wont say it but I can see it. But I'm super happy its all going well at byu-i for her. Sounds like the perfect life, working for the church, studying, hopefully getting good grades and all that fun stuff.

Thanks for the pictures and you managed to get a fin of a dolphin. But the pictures are amazing. I really enjoyed them. 
Alrighty dont have much to say this week but oh thanks for the pictures of Grandma and dixi and dana graduating. It was nice to see pictures of them. If you could send me some more of everyone it would be nice. Maybe I'll ask char too, I havent talked to her for a very long time... But I love you all and miss you tons!

Elder Simonsen