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

Monday, October 27, 2014

Monday October 27th, 2014

SOOOOOOOOO this week we had emergency transfers...........because there were two new americans that were coming in from the states. So my companion was transfered, monday night at about 4 on p-day. SO tuesday we had to go to Vitória and first of all we almost missed the bus, but then we were about 2 hours into the trip when the traffic stops....about one hour north of the rio border in Espirito Santo. And the traffic didnt move again for 6 more hours..............literally 6 hours the bus was stopped in traffic and did not move. Turns out that about 2km in front of us two 18 wheeelers had collided and a small car got caught in the mix, I think 3 people died and the trucks were completely destroyed. It took about 8 hours for them to clean up the road and open the lanes again. We got there after the first 2 hours. It was an interesting experience. Being on a bus from 9 in the morning until 6:30 at night...we got to know our neighbors really well. We got almost everyones address and we taught 3 lessons. We saw a sloth in the forest next to the bus. They are super huge and I tried to take a picture but I couldnt get the zoom to focus so....I don't have a picture. Also when we were there we ate Goiyaba, which is a fruit super common here. ONe of the people on the bus go hungry and went looking for food and found a goiyaba tree. SO we tried a little bit but they had goiyaba bugs so we didn't eat too much ;) 

Anyways I got to vitoria and my new companion is Elder McKnight from virginia/utah(USU) he has 1 year and 5 months in the mission, and my compnion got a new american from Kansas Elder Spain. Who doesnt speak any portuguese and elder gonzalez doesnt speak any english and has a heavy spanish accent....should be fun for them :) but they live with a couple other americans so its all good. Elder Spain will learn quick but he was super nervous. We slept in Cariacica that night and then got the bus around 7 to come back to campos. Anyways we have 4 americans in the house of course that means trouble or fun depending how you want to look at it ;) So thursday lunch fell for us and they had money, so we made navoo tacos. And Elder Reinhardt has a hot sauce, that is super hot. Like you put one drop on the food mix and you are still crying....sooo of course we had a hot sauce competition...need less to say no one really won but everyone "cried" but we are having a ton of fun and working harder. We didn't  have too much time to work in our area this week because we were traveling to do interviews for baptisms on the other side of the city. 

And we had a baptism this week. Her name is Larissa and she is 17. SHe lives exactly in front of the church. She got invited by a friend to go to abaptist church sunday night and she invited us to go with her. SO yesterday night we went to the 2nd baptist church of Campos. Its a little different than the baptist churches in florida or the states but it was an interesting experience. They like to sing a lot more than we do. 

Anyways the lessons learned this week: obedience to the mission rules. We have been having a super hard time going to bed at 10:30. USually we are passing the things of the district to the ZOne leaders about 10:20 and then we have to get ready to go to bed. Our district is us, the zone leaders, 2 compnaionships of sisters and 2 companionships of elders. SO we are brainstorming better ways to follow up. BUt these last 4 weeks its been super hard to get to bed at the right time and its taking its toll, I havent been able to write in my journal and its super hard to get up and excercise in the morning. Almost impossible. And if you arent fully awake, personal study isnt as spiritual and the day is harder to start. You also cant really pray very well in the morning when you are super tired.... SO My goal this week is to be in bed at 10:30. I remember in the beginning of the mission it was so much easier to be obedient and you have a greater power in teaching when you are obedient. The Spirit is so much easier to hear and testifies. SO what I'm going to try and do is slow things down this week. Work more on being obedient and on the christ like attributes. I'm still reading the bible and the book of Mormon and its still going good. 

I'm so grateful to be here in the mission and I'm so grateful for the gospel in my life. The knowledge that I have about my Reedemer and His plan for each one of us. There is a decision that we all have to make in our lives we have to .."choose this day whom we will serve" and like Joshua every day I'm doing my best to choose the Lord. It really is that simple. You choose to be obedient, you choose to follow the Lords counsel, you choose to do whats right. You can choose to be a man of God or you can choose to follow the natural man. It really is as simple as the light and the day. I love you all and i hope you all choose to do whats right and that you all do the small things so that the big things take care of themselves. Read the scriptures, say your prayers, go to church, and help another. Remember who you are and what you stand for and that excellence is not an act but a habit.I love you all and miss you tons and cant wait to see you all again. Until then for ZIon!
Love, Elder SImonsen

"Tudo vai dar Certo!" -Pres. Gordon B. Hinckley

Monday, October 20, 2014

Monday October 20th, 2014

Week 3 in Campos, Rio de Janiero

Monday, October 13, 2014

Monday October 13, 2014

No I havent seen blue yet and I'm in the state Rio not the city :P I'm about 4 hours north of the city and I'm in the most southern point of the mission (Zone wise at least) so I'll never actually make it to Rio the city. I would like to but we don't have that liberty. But yeah it's really good here, the people are super nice and the ward works super hard. All of the young women are always giving refrences for the missionaries. They don't really have any young women in our ward but the ward next to ours has a ton. We have all the young men though...they just don't do too much. But they are willing to do divisions :) Which is a huge relief. BEcause basically my companion is the pianist for the 2 wards. What ever activity that has piano he is there............and he is teaching piano lessons twice a week for 2 hours.....and we spend a lot of time sitting at the church.......and he (my companion) has lots of leg pains and foot we don't really go anywhere or when we do we take the bus or these vans that are like buses here and we lose a lot of time waiting for them.....yeah we teach about one lesson per day...........................................................but its all good, things will get better. The sun is still shining and I'm marking tons of divisions so that I can leave and work and use the members a ton and it's going to be fun. Challenge accepted. Also we have 4 other companionships in our district that live about an hour away. But its all for the work and for the good of Zion ;) So I'm working a lot on patience and keeping a good, happy attitude. But I will not compromise the standards or mission rules. That's were the fun comes in. I follow the rules and Preach my Gospel :) 

But anyways it has been a really fun learning week. I've started to study the new testament in english because I really want to focus on  understanding the principles and applying them and becoming more like Christ. I'm not going super fast but I'm making my way. I'm on matthew 9 ANd there is so much to learn. Reading in english is so much clearer and it's like a whole new world, but I'm trying not to read too much in english because I teach in portuguese. BUt I am really enjoying studying the new testament and the teachings of Christ. I really liked matthew 4:4 " Man shall not live by bread alone but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God"

Thats really tough about soccer but that probably is a good thing because coach west is a very tough coach and she always, always grabs freshman. Every year half her team is freshman. I've never understood why because they are usally injured or super tired by junior year. But if she keeps practicing and working hard she doesn't need to play this year, she could make it next or just skip high school and go straight to college :) 

As for flu shots, missionaries don't get shots or go to the doctor during the mission. You work and if you need something because you get sick then you go. Other than that you don't get the yearly shots or do yearly check-ups. So my last pendrive.....I think it has a virus as well because it's skipping talks that I put on for conference last I'm not to sure exactly what's going on and why music is so difficult and why I can't ever seem to listen to what I want. But Idk if you should send another memory card. The problem is that I might just give up on music and just sing myself. Memory cards are 30 reals here for 16 gb. Which would be 15 dollars. Which was the last memory card I had but I don't know how to avoid viruses because we always use lan-houses and dowloading conference and music from the churches youth site you somehow get viruses (probably because the computer itself) so maybe I'll buy another maybe not. I don't want to spend money because I would like to save it for when Ireally need it after the mission. And yes I would be super happy if courtney was there for christmas so that I can talk to her before she goes out to byu-I that would be nice.

Alrighty I love you all and miss you tons!

Elder Simonsen

ps. Dad: Still waiting for your email 

Monday, October 6, 2014

Monday October 6th, 2014

Alrighty so yes transfers................................................RIO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Yeah I left the state, I'm in Rio. Campos is the name of the city. IT's pretty nice, it's a little hot sometimes which I love but it's been really cold recently. Like I feel like it's super cold. My companion is Elder Gonzalez from Santiago Chile. He was in the mtc with me and so we know each other pretty well and it will be a fun experience. In our district we have 4 wards (because the Zone leaders are in our district too.) We have Guarus 1 &2 Turf and the Zone leaders ward. So It's a pretty big district. We have a ton of challenges and it's going to be super fun. I know that the Lord is really going to help and inspire us to be better and the overcome the great challenges that we have. It's been a super fun week and we had a harder time with conference. I saw Sunday morning, almost all of the session and a little less then half of sunday afternoon. SO I'm getting all the talks today so I can listen to them. I thought it was super cool that everyone talked in their native language. When Elder Godoy spoke I was looking down and thought " well this translation is really good, I can't hear any english" I looked up and realized that he was speaking portuguese! The feeling that I felt was such a huge joy and I can't imagine what the other brazilians felt. i know everyone was really excited and happy. It is a super cool experience and it would have been super cool to have been there hearing it in person. I really enjoyed the talks of Elder Bednar e President Monson. The other talks I didn't hear as much so I'll listen to them today. Maybe....I lost my memory card that I was using to listen to I'll try with the pendrive today. 

Anyways the last day in cobilandia was super fun, I don't think I've cried that much since I left home. BUt it was a super good experience and won't be the last time I see everyone. I'll definitely have to go back and visit. It was super hard to break the news to them. But Gilberto took it really well and said basically after a lot of hugs Well the next missionaries will have to baptize me and we'll send you pictures. :) Thats awesome, because I toltally broke down telling him we were leaving. Then we went and visited Josimar and Karina(who had been baptized the day before) and they both cried, and then asked me to say the prayer...... then we went to ana paula's house and she taught us! We had her teach us and she taught a lesson super powerful and spiritual and me and my companion were both amazed. And then we h ad to tell her we were leaving. Fun. BUt these are memories that we will never forget. Elder Barreto( My old companion) is training and he left the state too, but he's in Minas Gerais in the city Nunuque. So we are on opposite ends of the mission now but he'll have a ton of fun there and it will be super good.

ANyways these are the major updates and I'll stop now so I can send pictures :) But Its all good and sunny here in RIO and the Gospel is being preached with love and vigor. Read the Book Of Mormon! Hold tight to it and doubt your doubts before you doubt your faith. I know this church is true, that we have a prophet on the earth today. He and 14 others spoke this last weekend and they spoke the words of God. They testified of Christ and are His disciples. I know that Joseph Smith was a prophet of God and that he restored the Church of God on earth. and I know that Christ lives. That HE is our savior and Loves each one of us and we should become as He IS. In the name of Jesus Christ, Amen.

I'm pretty sure these are the pictures from his last day in his last area, before transfers. Where the missionaries get to go around and say their good byes before they leave!