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

Monday, May 11, 2015

Monday May 11, 2015

Thanks And the pictures look really good. I really enjoyed talking to you all and seeing how everyone has changed so much. So that picture of dad with the gas can.....did you run out of gas? Hahaha but dad looks good, his hair was really long...... but the blue looked good. Haha I miss the zoo.

But yeah not too much to write about this week. Should be lots of fun this week. We have had a lot of problems with mission rules this'm getting kinda nervous. I think we might be getting some calls. For example, can only talk for 30-40 mins and yes I went over to about an hour in total but the other missionaries here with me in colatina....they spent at least 2 hours and the sisters talked for at least 4 or 5....with everyone.........they know and their one worked yesterday and I even asked them to get off and only use one hour.......should be fun. Almost there, just a little bit longer. They are all really good people though, I love them a lot. But the things I've studied this week are the Book of Mormon, and I've been thinking a lot about those 2 talks from conference by President Uctdorf and President Eyring. SO this week we are encouraging everyone to read these talks and to study them and to really focus on the book of mormon becuase we need a really big change of heart. We all really need to remember why we are here and what is our purpose and walk in the Spirit and find those whom the Lord indicates is ready to recieve  the gospel. So we need to work on following the Spirit and challenging the people to baptism. So..........we are going to have to work really hard this week and really focus our hearts on Christ. I know it will make a huge difference and that we will be able to focus on Christ and really center HIm in our lives. There is such a purity and a love that fills you when you do this. When you really focus on the Savior and HIs teaching and try to become like Him. I know it will all work out and that we must do our best. I feel that it will all be fine.

As for the people I'm talking all reality most everyone stopped talking to me or I stopped talking to them. Right, so  emily, sent me a letter close to the end of her mission, and it was good just missionary stuff (thats all its ever been mom, nothing more :p I went on the mission with no one, just friends) but I knew she would be going home soon so I basically told her to forget herself and enjoy the end of her mission, haha never got another letter or word. Anne, havent talked to her since I left BYU. Tasha, she sent me an email when she got home and I basically kind of told her the same thing, study hard, work hard and dont worry about me. Morgan, wrote her a letter she said she was writing one back, but....Its been almost 6 months I'm not too worried( I sent it in december) Other than that, I got a few emails from some sisters from my group but I dont really respond that often, I always write you, dad, and kiki, or courtney. (Still WAITING for brook's letter or email.....just saying ya know) I havent heard from my friend from BYU for a while they are finishing their missions in like 3 weeks and are super busy. NIck I have an email i need to read and David sent me one as well but their emails are generally every once in 2-3 months. I sent emails to Eric but he hasnt responded....i think something happened with his parents.....Idk i just heard they moved, like a year ago. And other than that , there really isnt anything. Of those 31 emails from the beginning I uasually receive 12-14 now of which about 5-6 are yours, 3-4 from the mission, and a couple updates or weekly updates from John and other people. Haha its all good though. It works out well.

But yeah church yesterday was really good, we learned about the Book of Mormon and a member bore his testimony about the missionaries going to his house and sharing it with him and how it changed his life 14 years ago. It was really powerfull and came at the right time. Anways I love you all and miss you so much I hope you all get better and that you read the book of Mormon.

Elder Simonsen

Monday, May 4, 2015

Monday May 4th, 2015 ~Colatina (new area)

Well sounds like you all had a super fun week. Going to disney, being sick, and swimming in a pool. I cant imagine how life is, haha only thing I can think is work work work. I try not to think about anything else. It actually got a lot easier now. So as you know i was transfered and so now I'm in Colatina! I've heard a lot about this area. Everyone says a lot of good things about this city. ITs a really small city in comparison with the others that I've passed through but its way bigger then Anchieta. I'm compaions with Elder Barreto again! we were companions almost a year ago in cobilandia. So its nice to be back together again. We have changed a lot though so it should be interesting. We are living with two other missionaries. So it just happens that I trained Elder Barreto, then afterwards he trained an elder named Elder Verçoza who happened to train an Elder From Texas named Elder McDown and we all live in the same right there is 4 generations. They are all great missionaries. ITs just weird being the oldest missionary now. Its weird because i'm starting to realize that the mission is ending. I have a ton of time and i need to serve my mission the best I can. I need to give everything in these last 2 months.....Which is not a lot of time............................sigh. but its a lot of fun and I can only be excited trying to imagine how the rest of my life will be even better. The joy i've felt in the mission is amazing and I know that the next step in my life will be even more exciting and more fun. But I'm super excited to go to the temple again. I cannot wait. 

So as for things I've been studying I'm working this transfer on......Christlike attributes. I'm focusing on really studying and pondering them and having them become a part of my life. So I managed to put all of the attributes in these next 4-5 weeks where I will study two attributes during the week. This week is faith and humility. I learned a lot about faith this morning reading about it in Preach my Gospel and the Bible Dictionary. And thinking about it. I read some real interesting facts about true faith and how its centered on Christ. I never had really thought about it that way. True faith. What makes our faith true and what makes it not true. And there are just a lot you can pull from the Bible Dictionary. I think this section was writtem by Elder McConkie because it sounds like something he would say in a talk during conference. Anyways things are good. Life is well. There is a park near our house that has pull up bars and so we have gone there twice to try and work out...haha it hasnt gone too well yet but we just have to get used to it. But as for using skype......i believe that it should be right around 3-4 in the afternoon. So should be around 2-3 your time because you all are an hour behind us. But as for utah. I dont know......Anyways that all the important stuff thats happened this week. I love you all and hope all is well. Love Elder Simonsen

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Pictures from Regina Marques (bishops wife) and Transfer information

Mais fotos! ~ More Photos

Este irmão ao lado dois dois missionários é o Líder da obra missionária na ala. ~
This brother beside two two missionaries is the leader of missionary work in the ward. (picture above)

Hoje teremos transferências! Saberemos logo mais se ele vai ser transferido ou não. Se eu souber posso lhe falar logo mais.
Today we transfer ! We'll know soon whether it will be transferred or not. If I know I can talk to you soon .
Seu filho vai ser transferido! Mas nós ainda não sabemos para onde ele vai!
Bem, foi um grande prazer alegrar os seus dias com algumas notícias e fotos de seu filho!
Um abraço!
Ele é um GRANDE missionário! Nós vamos sentir muita falta dele, com certeza! Parabéns pelo filho especial e valoroso que vocês têm!

Your child will be transferred ! But we still do not know where it goes!
Well, it was a great pleasure to brighten your day with some news and photos of your child !
A hug!
He is a missionary GREAT ! We will really miss it, for sure! Congratulations on special and valiant you have !

Monday, April 27, 2015

Monday April 27, 2015

Hey can you send me a picture of bro and sister Yeargin. I miss them a ton. That's tough though that you all are sick. I cant imagine how that its. So today you'll have to be patient with me because this computer is really slow and I really dont have patience to mess with a computer like that. So if there are a ton of words spelled wrong its because of how slow the computer is. But anyways this week was super was probably the hardest week of my mission up till now. Literally we have no investigators and we couldnt enter anyones house....and i had fun week with my companion. its better now but oh yeah, lots of prayer. We however had a super fun service project, so here in brazil they bould houses with a type of clay brick and to build a roof they use brick andthem pour cement on top of the bricks. So what happens s that here when you build a house, and you arent super rich, its literally you and one construction worker building a house, and to do the roof its like barn raising, everyone comes to help. dont have a cement truck, you make the cement, fill up buckets and carry it to the top of the this house happened to be above, well basically it was 3 flights of stairs....carrying a bucket full of cement......I had a blast, it was so much fun, however I learned how I'm like half the person physically that i was when i started the mission. Literally. It was super tireing but really fun. Eveyone was so tired and exhausted afterwards. It is an experience that I will never forget.Literally though, my companion had no energy for the next 2-3 days. BUt it was super fun. BUt i will think twice when some one asks again, because it took a really long time, and its really hard work. But I loved it. 

So as for the rest of the week we tried to work, did a division with some return missionaries here in the ward And they taught me a ton. BUt the tings I learned this week are patience, faith, love, and hard work. I learned that its not as easy as we think to follow the Spirit sometimes and you have to be fearless and testify of the truth in every contact, so that they can feel the spirit and have a desire to learn. That the lessons are best taught by a team who are following the Spirit, that we have to be humble and recognize the Lords hand in every thing we do.I learned again to love the Lord and His plan for us. I learned to love and treasure the scriptures even more. I learned to share that with those I love and how to use your heart to teach. It was a super good spiritual week. And I learned a lot.

haha i switched computers, now its a little better. but anyways. We were transfered. So we will be going to a new area tomorrow. Should be fun. I think that it will literally be my last area. I have only 11 more weeks. So the chances of me leaving in the other transfer to go to another are very small. but who knows. really other than this there hasnt been too much that is going on. Working hard, I'm learning a lot. As for the meat, yeah its pretty big here butI've been eating less of it. Just a ton of rice and beans. But its all good. Hope your on! Love YOU!

Elder Simonsen

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Monday April 20th, 2015

Well i actually saw the prom pictures yesterday but i had no idea who she was with. We were at the bishops house and the wife showed me the pictures. I had no idea who any one was......Amon has changed a lot. Is he taller now? 

As for the pictures of coutrney.....she looks good. The pictures are pretty.......

Yep sounds like a ton of fun and i saw that brooklyn is super tall. It will be weird when to see everyone again. I also realized looking at her pictures (bishops wife) how much skinnier i am..................I'm eating so much.... oh well.

As for this week. This week was actually a super hard week. Haha each week can only get better ;) but we started the week with not a single investigator. Literally, not a single one. We are visiting the less actives as much anymore because you can literally lose yourself doing that. There were weeks that we had almost more lessons with them than with actual lessons. And so we decided to find new investigators........................................................................................................................................................................and we knocked on doors.................................................almost the whole week......................................................................................................................................................................yeah but towards the end of the week some people started opening their doors and as crazy as it seems we managed more lessons this week than any other week i've been here. We also had a couple members turn away from the church, and some other fun things that aren't as important............................................but the GOOD NEWS-> we are still here, and we are doing fine. We had two huge miracles this week and I'm so grateful for these miracles. Obviously had more than 2 but these are the two i would like to share.

So one was on tuesday, we went to visit a reference of an investigator. We talked with her super quickly on sunday, gave her a pamflet and went on our way. Tuesday we went back to just do a quick visit and see if she read the pamflet. She opened the door and invited us in. So we entered. We sat down, talked a little with her got to know her and the we asked her if she read the pamlfet......she read the whole pamlfet and had done the prayer at the end. She started to explain how our prayers are completely different and how she said she felt that she was really inviting Heavenly Father in her prayer and how she felt a great peace and how much she loved to use that prayer instead of Our Father. So then we decided to teach her the first vision, and afterwards she asked about baptism, so we taught about baptism and helped her rocognize the Holy Ghost, then she asked what are things that stop people from being baptized, If she could be baptized again, and so we explained that she could and then taught her the commandments. Word of wisdom and law of chastity. She then said she would throw out her coffee and she would keep the commandments. We invited her to be baptized and she accepts without hesitation! A huge miracle and I'm so grateful to have been there to be a part. we didnt get to talk to her since then, she has kind of dissapeared but the Lord still blessed us and even if we never find her again or get to talk with her it was a huge blessing.

Also had another lady that the Lord guided us to her house, we felt that we should go knock doors in a certain area, and after much rejection had a family with their front gate open, and they let us in. Taught the first lesson andinvited them to pray. She had a little bit of a hard time during the lesson but in the end she understood. Came back the next day and she told us that she had felt a peace so great when we were there and when we left she kept feeling that peace and it kept reminding her of the things we taught and how she loved that peace. We explained that it was the Holy Ghost responding her prayer (John14:26) and we invited her to follow the response and to be baptized, she wants to but she want to first keep the commandments and visit the church, she said she wouldnt drink coffee anymore and that she would go to church with us and it was a true blessing. She didnt go, she had to take care of her grandson and took medicine to sleep and literally didnt wake up. 

But i'm so grateful for the blessings of the Lord I know this is His work and that there are people prepared to recieve the Gospel. I know that He will guide us to them and that we must help them to recieve the restored Gospel I'm doing everything I can to be always worthy of the Holy Ghost so that Ha can guide us in our way. It requires a lot of patience, lots of suffering, and lots of love. I learned to hold my tounge this week....and to let things go. I'm trying to just love everyone independent of what they do or think of me. It's not easy, especially when they dont treat you exactly right but you still have to love and to serve them. You must always be humble and always think about others. I'm doing good, and loving the mission. I miss you all a ton but I still have lots to learn. 

Elder Simonsen

Monday, April 20, 2015

Brooklyn April 20th, 2015

Monday, April 13, 2015

Monday April 13th, 2015

Well this week was interesting. Really this week didnt have too much. Just a couple really big trials but it's all going well. Monday I spent the whole day listening to conference. I really enjoyed elder Bednar's talk about fear and how we can conquer our fear. How we can have godly fear which is really loving and trusting in the Lord. I really enjoyed the priesthood session talks of PResident Ucthdorf and President Eyring. They were really powerful and President Monsons about priesthood blessings. I'm really trying to work on me now, Trying to be a better person, more like Christ. watching my thoughts, words, and actions. I'm trying to develop that pure love, that fills our souls. I'm just trying to be a better me. And be patient meek and humble. Haha its not easy. I dont have to agree with everything thats being done and what some leaders think but I have to be obedient and respect the callings and try to just learn. I'm trying to follow the Lords plan and serve best where he wants me to serve. to be the man he wants me to be. I've learned quite a lot this week ;) I can say its all good now but it sure was tons of fun ;) Good stories for when I come back. Speaking of which I recieved that fun call, I'll send you that email so special. About July 15. 

But anyways the week is good, the work is hard. We have a lot of investigators that are having word of wisdom problems. BUt the Lord is preparing a way. I don't know exactly His plan or how it will all work out but I will do my best so that I'm on His side when its all done and that I can say that I did His will.

As for personal study, I'm going to read the new testament, I'm going to focus more on Jesus the Christ to finish it, and I'm reading the book of mormon. I'm in 2nd Nephi 11 or 12. I'm trying to work on reading more dilligently the book of mormon every day. Its not as easy because I'm always studying another thing or the doctrine and covenants or the bible. But I'm going to make a bigger effort. I know that this time is the time that I have to give to the Lord. The only reason I've been focusing on the school is because I had to register for classes. If I wait I wouldnt get any of the ones that I would like. So all the decisions come to now.........but its all good I only think about them at night and on monday. But I know that the Lord will guide me. 

Sounds like you all are having tons of fun and that everyone is doing good. As for Brandon maybe it would be really good to watch conference with him. Maybe rewatch the prophet speak or another talk the sisters think would be good. Use the internet and hook it up to the tv. Use the resources you have because here it isnt that easy. Most everyone doesnt have internet at their home. They have it on their phone but when they use it all in the first 2-3 days....doesnt leave too much space for us. 
Sorry today I wont write too much but it should be enough. My companion and I are doing good now. Its much better then this last week. But the work we are doing is true. It is a stone cut without hands that will roll forth to bless all people in the whole world. I know that Christ lives and that He loves everyone of us and that if we follow Him with faith we will be saved in the last day. I love you all and hope all is well.

Love Elder Simonsen

Monday, April 6, 2015

Monday April 6th, 2015

Alrighty so .....this week has been super fun. As for conference, I only watched sunday, and had the amazing opportunity to watch the Priesthood session in between the sunday sessions. Literally 6 hours of conference. But At least the next conference I'll be home and will be able to watch it without worry and what not. 

We could only watch saturday if we had investigators with us....So we were going to try and get the saturday afternoon session but lunch was super late. like we got to lunch at 1:30 (first sesion starts at 1 here and the second session at 5) and we left lunch at 4......i was super excitied.... (every conference we miss most of saturday because of lunch, oh well) then we had to help a investigator change rooms. Her mom had cancer 5 years back, went through treatment and hasn't left her bed since then. she is obeise and already had health problems. But because of mold in her room she needed to change rooms. they told us on friday so we made arrangements to switch the rooms saturday and because we left lunch so late, we knew there would be no way to get to conference. We tried to put it on her computer didnt work too well. we were busy moving things. I'm super happy a member went there to help though. if not we literally would not be able to do it. It took all four of us to put her in a wheel chair because she cant walk. So we literally lifted her off the bed into the chair. But it was good service. I'm happy we could be such a big help to her.

As for college I'm working on it still. I'll be honest and say that its not easy. I Know where the Lord wants me to be and I'm prayer to confirm that its right but I've been having a really hard time. It's a big decision and I want to make the right one. I've also been having tons of problems with my companion. I love him a ton, but he does not want to be here and does not want to do anything. Anything. He had a lot of super tough companions and literally stopped doing everything. So i'm working with that and having no money............well we are starting to get paid back from the buses we took because I finally managed to send the reembulsment (recipt) so in a little bit we should have money again. But don't worry we aren't super hungry we are getting a lot of food. From investigators and members. So we just have to be humble and accept when they offer. Its interestinf because I thought I knew what poor is.....haha I'm learning a little better. But Mom, you dont need to worry, the Lord is taking care of us. these trials are here not only to test our faith but to help us grow. to prepare us for the rest of our lives. I know that eventually we will pass and look back and be grateful because of the things the Lord has taught us. Don't worry about me, I'm on the Lords errand and as such He will take care of us. As the scriptures teach 
" And why take ye thought for raiment? Consider thelilies of the field how they grow; they toil not, neither do they spin;
 29 And yet I say unto you, that even Solomon, in all his glory, was not arrayed like one of these.
 30 Wherefore, if God so clothe the grass of the field, which today is, and tomorrow is cast into the oven, even so will he clothe you, if ye are not of little faith.
 31 Therefore take no thought, saying, What shall we eat? or, What shall we drink? or, Wherewithal shall we be clothed?
 32 For your heavenly Father knoweth that ye have need of all these things.
 33 But seek ye first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things shall be added unto you.
the Lord will prepare a way for us but we must learn to trust in Him. We must go until we think we cannot go anymore and then the Lord shows us that we can. Especially when we are with Him. Salvation isn't easy and if the Lord who was perfect suffered all these things are we greater than He? No, so just smile and wave ;) the Lord is with us. (They who are with us are more than those who are against; Elijah)

So yeah the week is going, We are learning and we are growing. I know these things will be hard because if it were easy it wouldnt be called salvation. If the kingdom of God Didnt require all we have, we wouldn't be grateful for what we receive. I know that for college if I had stopped and asked the Lord what He wanted for me instead of what I wanted, I could have resolved the problems before i left. MAybe even before I went to college. But I also know that in the Lords own time are things given, faith includes trusting in the Lords timing (Elder Neal A Maxwell) I know that I need to work to become a Religious Professor at BYU. The problem that I'm having is the major. There really isnt a set major that leads you there. thats why I thought biology, or maybe History or literally anything. But I'm feeling that it might need to be the middle east. I know the most commom major for these professors is the Ancient Near Eastern studies, and I thought that might be the answer. But I've been feeling that maybe I need to study the middle East itself. I heard that in a prayer I had, and thought that maybe it would be the Ancient one because I didnt think byu had that major. But following the middle east major I don't know How i would be amply prepared to become what the Lord has shown me I need to become. Maybe I'm lacking faith, I know that fear is stopping me from moving forward and I know that fear is the opposite of faith. And I do not doubt that Satan is using this fear, I feel paralyzed to make the decision because I know it will change my life. I know that he is working against me so that I don't reach my potential because I will make a difference. I know that he is trying to take my prayer and my faith. I do not have any doubts that he is real and that he is literally fighting against us and our Father. What I need to do it have the faith to put him behind me and trust the Lord. Depsite what ever consequence may follow. I read in the last conference a talk that talks about currents (ocean currents) and in the last part there is a quote from President Kimball-
If we can create … a strong, steady current flowing toward our goal of righteous life, we and our children may be carried forward in spite of the contrary winds of hardship, disappointment, [and] temptations.”12

The name of the talk is trifle not with sacred things.

I really like this quote as well.
Heavenly Father has blessed us with the supernal gift of the Holy Ghost to guide our choices. He has promised us inspiration and revelation as we live worthy to receive such. I invite you to take advantage of this divine gift and examine your choices by asking yourself the question, “Are my decisions firmly planted in the rich soil of the gospel of Jesus Christ?” I invite you to make whatever adjustments are needed, whether small or large, to ensure the eternal blessings of Heavenly Father’s plan for you and those you love.

Anyways thats the news flash. Here in like 4 weeks we can talk face to face :) will be so much fun but its in the next transfer so......I wont think about it too much yet. I love you tons and hope all is well.  Love you!

Love, Elder Simonsen