Monthly Archives: October 2012

Splits Again!

Don’t have much time this week to write, sorry!

Wow I learned a lot this week! First we didn’t get to work a lot with Jacques and Claudia, but this week we will make sure that they come to church! That being said we had an investigator come to church and an inactive also came to church for the first time in over a year after we visited with him! It was AWESOME! I say it every week but maybe we will have a baptism this week!

Okay, drunken relatives are starting to bug me… We were teaching the Plan of Salvation to an Investigator when his drunk brother came into the room and chased out the spirit! But the investigator Erir is really great, we talked with his this week and he is reading the book of Mormon and all of our pamphlets! We asked him if he prayed about it but he said he didn’t. Then he said that he believes the book is true. I didn’t know what to say, I was dumb founded! He asked why other churches didn’t use the Book of Mormon. It was truly a miracle! The problem is that he still really likes the Catholic Church and doesn’t really understand what it means to know that the Book of Mormon is true. We will continue to work with him and help him gain a testimony of the church.

Well I had a chance to serve with elder Lorindo for a day, he is our Zone Leader and we had a great split. Elder Lorindo is 100% obedient and I noticed the difference when I was serving with him, we taught with the spirit and invited with the spirit so we had miracles. We were placed by the lord to teach Irma Vera the restoration and she accepted our invite to come to church to find answers if the message of the Restoration is true. Because the spirit touched her heart she came to church. I learned the importance of obedience and that our obedience and faithfulness can’t depend on the faithfulness of our companions, friends, or anyone. We have to be bold and brave all of the time. This is eternal truth!
Well got to go! Until next week!

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4 Months!

Hiking “a Cabeça do Cavalo” or “The Horse´s Head.”

Flying Kites on P-day!

Dear World!

Can you believe it has been over 4 months since I have eaten an American cheeseburger? I thought the day would never come! LOL well this week I completed 4 months as a missionary and 2 months in the field! And what a week it was! Still no baptisms BUT a good week nonetheless!

And what’s still better is that it is P-day and today we did a little hiking. Elder Vieira, Léo and I (a youth in the ward who turned 18 today) hiked to the top of a rock called “a Cabeça do Cavalo” or “The Horse´s Head.” Wow, I’ve been climbing hills every single day in Cascatinha but this was a difficult but rewarding hike! We arrived at the top of the rock, ate some apples, tangerines, bread, Jelly Bellies (thank you mom!) and flew kites! It was really fun I will include some pictures for all of you folks watching at home! Above the rock was an abandoned reggae bar LOL!

Well this week we really focused on making solid contacts to find new people and it has been working pretty well because we are starting to teach a new family! Let me tell you a little about the family of Jacques and Claudia. Jacques and Claudia have been married (actually legally, which is a miracle to find here!) for over at least 20 years. They have a daughter named Gabriella, who is 19 years old and Gabriella has 19 years and also has a 3 year old daughter! They all live together in a house with an amazing view of the city. MEANING it’s a climb to reach their humble home. Anyway, we met Jacques in the street and asked if we could share a message with him and his family. He accepted excitedly and we marked a day to visit them. On the scheduled day, we knocked on their door and met Claudia who rescheduled for the next day. And what A visit it was! We arrived exactly at 4 in the afternoon and knocked on their door (which in Brazil is a lot of shouting and clapping… I love it) and no one responded. At about 410 Claudia met us in the street outside of her house, and she was a little tipsy, but told us that her whole family was in the house and she wanted us to pray with them. At this request we entered their house and met the family. We talked a little bit, they recognized that I was American and Claudia asked us if we had girlfriends. Elder Vieira immediately said yes, and I have learned now that I should have said the same because Claudia (still tipsy) proceeded to present her daughter Gabriella and said that I should one day take her back to America with me, I laughed because I really didn’t know how to respond! Luckily they all laughed too. Well I offered the opening prayer and I felt the spirit in the house with this little family, Claudia started to cry. We proceeded to share a message with them, but Claudia insisted that the message should be Psalms 93. We read it and invited the family to Church; they accepted and seemed firm that they would fulfill their promise to go to Church. Jacques told us that his leg is always in pain and he is usually in bed all day, but he said they would make an effort to attend our meeting. But when 9 o’clock rolled around, the 10 then 11, then 12… they didn’t show up. But I think with time they will have the desire to come to church and eventually be baptized.

I have been thinking a lot about how God doesn’t look at us as only how we are now, but our potential to be so much more than we are at this moment. I looked at this family and saw how much the Gospel would strengthen each of them individually and unite them as a family. I saw their challenges as ways that the Lord is going to open doors and bless their whole family.

I love the Gospel of Jesus Christ; it really blesses each and every one of us INDIVIDUALLY as well as makes great miracles in families, as I hope that it will in the little family of Jacque and Claudia. It brings peace into our lives that is different than anything that the world will say that brings happiness. The savior taught:
“Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.”
When we trust and live the gospel of Jesus Christ, we gain the assurance that we will have divine peace in our lives that has more value than anything that the world has to offer.

I know that is true, I have felt the Peace of the gospel touch my heart at difficult times and promise that it will fill your life if you live it.

Until next week! I love and pray for you all!

Elder Yost

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Another Week in Paradise!‏

Hello World!

-Just a little housekeeping! I got the Halloween Package Mom! Thanks so much for the Photos and goodies! My companion and I will enjoy it for quite some time!
-I got the photos of Homecoming weekend! Dad you look great!
-Rebecca and Stephen Congrats! Have a perfect wedding this week!

Well this week was very interesting! Monday evening of this past week we had a lesson with a really cool new family! Aluisio and His “Wife” Andreia have been “married” (not officially… just like everyone in Brazil) for 9 years and we met them about 3 weeks ago while trying to contact an old investigator. Well at the beginning of the visit, Aluisio was a little cold and didn’t talk a lot. But after we started conversing, he quickly warmed up and started to make a lot of jokes (mainly centered around English and my accent) but it was all in good humor and we really enjoyed the visit. One very common joke here goes kind of like this “Eu sei como falar inges fluentemente… ‘ingles fluentemente,'” which translates “I know how to speak English fluently…’English fluently.'” Aluisio got such a kick out of all of his jokes, but it was really good because we all felt like old friends at the end of the visit. Well we taught his family (him his “wife” and 3 daughters) the restoration and it went great. At the end of the lesson they started with a lot of questions, mostly about the Book of Mormon. It is so critical that people understand that the proof of the restoration is the Book of Mormon, and if the Book of Mormon is true then everything that we taught is true. They accepted to read the Book of Mormon and come to Church this next weekend. We have been trying to contact them again this past weekend but they are traveling and so this week we will hopefully discuss their experience and challenge them to be baptized.

Other then that we did a lot of walking, and climbing stairs all week long, but this is good and necessary. I know that the lord knows our sacrifices and our desires. He wants all of his children to have success in all aspects of their lives. What he asks of us is our diligence and our patience that everything that the Lord Promises will be fulfilled in His time. We can’t let the devil bring us down, we got to keep pushing on, one stair at a time!

We started off the week with a Zone Conference with President Lima. This was really cool because I got to see a lot of Missionaries from my group in the MTC. But the conference itself was amazing, President Lima is really inspired and I have a lot of trust in him. He spoke a lot about the 47th chapter of Alma. This chapter talks about how when we let our guard down or “descend from our mountain” we are susceptible to being poisoned by the devil and spiritually die. Well for us he related it to obedience, he promised that if we are 100% obedient, and patient we will be blessed with more investigators keeping commitments and, as a result, Baptisms. I feel like Alma in Alma 8, I just want to have a baptism! I need to be more patient and trust that the promise of President Lima will be fulfilled.

I love all of you back home. I know that the Book of Mormon is true! If you haven´t read it, READ IT. And think about what it means if it is true. After that all you need to do to receive an answer is ask God with faith for a Testimony. I promise that God will respond your prayers. God lives, he loves us so much that he sent Jesus Christ to live and die for us.

A Fé é Tudo!

Elder Yost

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General Conference or Bust!

Another p-day in paradise!

Thanks for all of your emails and letters! Wednesday we will have a zone conference so we should be receiving mail and stuff.

Wow conference was great! I think it is awesome that sisters can serve when they are 19 years! (if anyone wants my advice to serve or not the answer is always yes!). Everyone here, including my companion, were praying for a Rio temple to be announced, but the Lord is still preparing Rio to receive this celestial gift in a few more years!

I made pancakes this week! haha just thought I would share that.

We might have a baptism this sunday with Igor ( a 17-year-old friend of the youth in our ward) I will let you know if it happens!

This past week I studied the address of King Benjamin in order to prepare a bit for the general conference.  I learned a lot but 3 things from the story that I want to mention really quickly.

FIrstly the people prepared for the conference with their families gathered to hear the word of their prophet and King. As a missionary, everything we do is for the family. The best thing ever is when we get the chance to sit down with a family and teach a little bit about how much God has blessed our families this day with a current prophet. The Family is the best place to learn everything about the gospel, and when we apply the gospel to our families miracles happen. I have seen a miracle in Rose and Cristiano’s family because of the gospel. Last night we had a family night with them and the spirit is in abundance in that house. Cristiano conducted the family night with the authority of a Patriarch of the family and I felt the spirit uniting this small family in Cascatinha.

Second, King Benjamin really taught what the people needed to hear. I thought a lot about how when we listen to the words of the prophets, the Spirit will bring to our hearts and minds exactly what WE need to hear. I heard exactly what I needed to hear. I had the great blessing to hear 3 sessions in Portuguese and the last session of Conference in English. But what was really great was that, even though I didn’t understand 100% of what was being said in Portuguese, the Spirit brough to my attention what I needed to hear, and I understood what was important for me to hear. I relied on the Spirit to understand what I needed to hear. My notes from the conference are 50% portuguese and 50% english, because the spirit brought to my mind in english what I couldn’t understand in portuguese. I feel that this was an amazing blessing for me, and a true gift from God. It was a manifestation of the Gift of Tongues through the spirit.

The last part was that the People of Nephi went home, thought about what they have heard and applied it. After they did this there were miracles in the land and 3 years of peace. It is our duty to apply what we learned, and strive to develop a life long conversion to the gospel. I loved elder Bednar’s address, he explained the relationship of testimony and conversion in our lives.I really cant wait to study this talk more. He said that a testimony is a gift from God that we get after we experiment on his word. And a conversion is us showing our gratitude by changing our lives taking up “our cross” and following Christ. When we apply our testimony in our lives we change our heart and begin to become converted to the Gospel of Jesus. Conversion is change, and it requires effort and patience.

This week was great, and difficult. I learned that I need to rely on the spirit in all aspects of my work as a missionary. I had the opportunity to introduce Elder Viera into our area. This was tough because I only had 1 transfer in this area and am still a greenie! But we worked a lot, making contacts teaching and working. I have never been so tired in my life! I hit my bed at 10:30 and pretty soon it’s another day full of work! But I am so thankful to be serving here as a missionary in Brasil, this mission is still in its infancy but I am working to make each “today” the best today of the best 2 years of my life!

The Lord Saviour Jesus Christ lives! He loves YOU. He wants you to trust him and when you do He wont ever let you down. The Lord of the Vineyard is the head of His Church and I feel honored to work beside Him!

Until next week!

Elder Topper Yost

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Weddings and Tranfers!‏

Well I finished my first transfer in Cascatinha and am staying here for another! However my companion Elder Motta is being transferred and is kind of bummed because of a family that we are so close to completing! SO my new companion/trainer will be Elder Viera, I will let you know a little about him next week!

Let me tell you a little bit about this really great family! Rose and Cristiano have been together for about 3 years and are getting ready to be married as soon as possible so that Cristiano can be baptized, and eventually the whole family can be sealed together. Well that is the very basic, the story gets a little more interesting because Rose was sealed to another member of the ward, and ever since they divorced, both Rose and her ex-husband wouldn’t come to church because of fear/shame/pride of the other. Anyways we have been teaching Cristiano over the past month or so and working to get the family married and completed! Cristiano has changed a lot since we have been teaching him. In the beginning he really wasn’t too interested in our messages and wasn’t participating a lot in our lessons. But I can see the hand of the Lord in his life because now he is a completely different man. He is attentive and has a great desire to go to the temple and bring the gospel into his home and he is looking forward to raising his 2 year old daughter, Isabella in the gospel. The house has a special spirit when we are teaching, and I can really feel the faith of the entire family increasing. Of course the challenge right now is the money for the marriage, and the time that it takes to be married. If everything goes right, they will be married and Cristiano will be baptized in the next 2 weeks! Well Saturday we visited with the family to invite them to the ward conference and Elder Motta and I bore our testimony of how much we know that the gospel will bless their life and how amazing it will be for them to someday enter the Temple and be sealed. The spirit was so strong; Rose began to cry and promised that the entire family would go to church the next day. Which, with a lot of help from the Lord, Elder Motta, the entire family, and I walked together to church. Wow it felt so great to sit next to them during the sacrament meeting.

This sacrament meeting was a great blessing, we also had another investigator Igor come to church who we might be able to baptize this coming week! The ward had 144 people who attended the conference (in comparison to the 57 who were at the church the week before).

This week I asked the Lord to show Elder Motta and I the fruit of our labors and the lord answered my prayer. I know that the lord lives and that this gospel changes lives! I see the difference that the gospel is making in the life of Cristiano and I am so thankful to be serving here. The Lord knows us, and will ALWAYS answer our prayers! I have a strong testimony of this. We all have challenges that at times may seem like physical or spiritual mountains that we need to overcome. The Lord promises that when we have faith in him we will be able to move our mountains!

God lives, he loves us and wants us to embrace him in all aspects of our lives!

Até mas!

Elder Yost

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