Friday, December 11, 2015

Sao Francisco de Paula - Week 14

December 7, 2015

FELIZ NATAL (Merry Christmas!)

Sorry i have to rush today, the internet houses were all closed for the greater part of the day and Time for emailing is about to end! 

But this week was great! the pesquisador i talked about last week is doing really good! she asks a ton of questions and we get to talk with her a lot. there is always room for the spirit in her house.  here is some news! she told us she wants to get baptized! the problem is she lives in the same house as her boyfriend and because of this she has to be legally married before she gets baptized. but that is no problem for her! she has a super open heart and is willing to do everything we invite her to. but i think the best moment teaching her was when she started to understand that Heavenly Father loves her, shes starting to really rely on prayer to receive help and answers in her life. the change is both exciting and wonderful to see in her! i can´t wait to continue teaching her!

i´m really starting to get portuguese under my feet. i understand almost everything everyone is saying, with the lack of a few words. but my problem for now is being more certain with conjugations. if you don´t know about conjugations, just leave them be, they´re really hard for us english speakers...
but i really love portuguese! i´t´s really beautiful! 

i´m also really excited for christmas but i´ll talk more about that in my next email

Elder John D. Scarlett

Sao Francisco de Paula - Week 13

November 30, 2015

This week was my first week with my new comp. Elder Fávaro. it was totally awesome. 

My new companion is pretty cool. He´s from a state in Brazil called Mato Grosso do Sul. he learned a lot of english through video games (who knew video games could b good for something?) and is a real channel for the Holy Ghost at times. 

My Zone
We had a few really cool experiences this wee, but i only have time for one. I wrote it in Portuguese first, then channeled it through google translate to english (google translate is really bad...) and edited a few things so it would make more sense in english. but here it is!

a primeiro dia dessa transferência foi bem-ligal, nos visitamos quase todas as pessoas nos conhecemos em uma bajo. na fim do dia nos passamos a casa do irma Silvia. ela tem basicamente 5 filhos em a casa dela. com uma filha, ela teve uma experiencia mal com a igreja e as missionários, mas ela gostou de nos e deixa nos entrar. nos começamos falando com eles e logo depois ela começo falando sobre a experiencia dela com as missionários e a família dela. ela falou sobre essa experiencia, também que ela esta pensando sobre a igreja, o que A Igreja de Cristo deve ser, e tudo foi coisas certas. nos só escutou. uma filha dela começo falando sobre algumas dessas coisas e também falou sobre algumas experiencias mal na vida dele e preguntou sobre algumas coisas como assim. nos damos elas escrituras e explicou um poco, mas muito do tempo la, fomos escutando para entender a situação delas. nos ficamos la para mais ou menos 2:30 até 3 horas, só escutando. eu nunca sentiu sentimento como eu sentiu naquela casa. O Espirito foi tão forte, ele falou conosco exatamente que eles precisam. nos sabemos exatamente que nos precisamos compartilhar com eles. foi tão ligal. mas para mim, o coisa que foi o mais especial para mim foi que O Espirito fez em minha coração. ele testificou para mim que essas pessoas foi amado filhos e filhas do nosso Pai Celestial. eu nunca sentiu uma amor para uma pessoa como assim! foi tão forte e sem descrição dos palavras.

essa experiencia deixa mim com uma testemunho bem-fortalecido que eu sei todos nos são filhos de Deus, e que ele amo todos nos mais do que nos podemos pensar.
Branch Service Project

Making Pudin (pronounced poo-geen)
the first day of this transfer was pretty cool, we visited almost every person we know in a neighborhood. the end of the day we spent in the home of sister Silvia. she basically has 5 children in her home. one of her daughters had a bad experience with the church and the missionaries, but she liked us and let us in. we began talking to them and soon after she started talking about her experience with the missionaries and her family and also about the church - what Christ's Church should be, and everything she said was correct. we just listened. one of her daughters started talking about some of these things and also talked about some bad experiences in her life and asked about some things as well. we shared some scriptures with them and explained some things a little, but much of the time, we were just listening to understand their situation. we stayed there for about 2:30 to 3 hours, just listening. I never felt a feeling like I felt in that house. The Spirit was so strong, he told us exactly what they need. we knew exactly what we needed to share with them. It was so cool. but for me, the thing that was the most special was what the Spirit did in my heart. he testified to me that these people were beloved sons and daughters of our Heavenly Father. I never felt a love for a person as was this love! It was so strong, and indescribable.

this experience left me with a well-fortified testimony, that I know all of us are children of God, and that he love all of us more than we can even imagine.

Don´t have much time for more, but i love you guys!
hope a good week for ya´ll!
thanksgiving stories would be appreciated!

tudo bem em Brazil

Elder John D. Scarlett

Mate - herbal drink in special mate mug

Sao Francisco de Paula - Week 12

November 23, 2015

How great is the work of a missionary!

this is the last week of the transfer and it felt super long! but what miracles we´ve witnessed here in São Chico!

First off, last week and the start of this week were both slow and filled to the brim with work to do. As missionaries we often have to take inventories about the people we´re teaching and decide if they´re progressing or not. at the beginning of this week. I´ll be honest in saying i was losing  little bit of hope, but in this work, you don´t dwell on feelings like that, you just work with the knowledge that after all your work, Heavenly Father will make sure the rest is taken care of, and that is what gives you hope to continue working! 
How great a hope is that!

After that slow period at the beginning of this week, thinks picked up, and people were place in our way like i never thought was possible!

for example. we visited one of our pesquisadores who is the mom of a recent convert. she has a lot of faith and belief, but she struggles to keep the commandments. we set a goal with her the previous visit to help her keep the word of wisdom by asking her to smoke about an 1/8 less than she usually did. she accepted the goal and really had a desire to meet the goal when we left on the previous visit. this visit we followed up with her and she cut back her smoking by a factor of 1/2! i was blown away and super excited! yeah, she was still smoking, but she took it upon herself to meet our goal and then some!
I love seeing people progress!

Another miracle happened Sunday. after the first two hours of classes, we were waiting to start up the sacrament meeting and one of the sisters started talking with Elder Goulart while we were talking with Presidente Nunes. Turns our this Sister wasn´t a member like we had always thought. she always came to church and participated in the meetings, but she wasn´t baptized. so she ended up talking with all of us and she said she wanted to talk with the missionaries again and be baptized. Holy Goodness, things like that don´t happen in my dreams! This Sister was practically already a member. we were super excited to hear she wanted to take the next step and be baptized! i´m still marveling over this!

These are just two of the miracles we´ve witnessed this week. the Branch is really starting to mobilized and work with the missionaries. families are coming back to church. people are witnessing honest to goodness miracles in their lives!  How great is the work of a missionary!  The lesson from this is simple. This isn´t my work. it´s not the work of a missionary. we´re just the witnesses. This is the work of our Heavenly Father. his hand is in every part, whether those parts are slow and seemingly hopeless or filled with miracles arriving one after another. 

I´m extremely grateful and happy to be able to put my hands and heart into this work, but more than that i´m humbled by the opportunity i have to really see the Lord at work, changing the hearts of men in even this smallest part of the globe.

I love you guys a ton
Keep an eye out for the miracles!
Tudo Bem em Brazil

Elder John D. Scarlett

Sao Francisco de Paula - Week 11

November 16, 2015

This week was bem-bom (very good)!! and jam-packed with experiences of all kinds!

First off this week was really slow with work. for some reason these two past weeks are the weeks São Chico decided to gang up against us and not answer the doors when we clapped!
But for serious.
We returned to our area after a district conference on tuesday and spent almost the entire day just walking around trying to get into a house! i think we tried 13 houses without entering a single one! foi bem-estranho!

but that was mostly just tuesday. I've had a lot of fun working this week!

for example.
We have a couple fans her in São Chico, my favorite is a woman named Zelha. she´s probably 70+ years old and she loves the missionaries! shes not a member and the missionaries have never had the opportunity to visit her and share the messages with her, she just loves to see us on the street! she´ll stop us and talk with us about how she has new music, how she´s looking out for some cute gaúcho girls for us. she´s a riot! and i love seeing her on the street!

Also a couple weeks back we were int he church and we heard someone knock at the door. when we answered it was a semi-drunk homeless guy and he asked us for some blankets so he could keep warm. we didn´t have any in the church so we gave his some trash bags. he was super grateful but we felt a little bad because we didn´t have more to give him. so Elder Gardener ended up taking the sweater off his back and giving it to the man! The man was ecstatic! Now every time he sees us un the street he makes a point of talking to us and telling us how grateful he is! it gives we warm fuzzies!

so i found out i´m super inventive! i found out that if you clear out the inside of a roll save but a little bit of the bread and pour in hot quasi-maple syrup you can slowly eat the maple that drips out the bottom and it tastes almost like pancakes and maple! haha, i took a photo of my discovery, but i can´t send it through this computer so i´ll try to send it another time!

missions are great! i love it here so much!
i love all of you guys too!
keep on keeping on and i´ll update you all next week!

Tudo Bem em Brazil!

Elder John D. Scarlett

Sao Francisco de Paula - Week 10

November 9, 2015

Essa semana foi bom!
(This week was great!)

I feel very lucky in this area, i have everything i need to stay healthy and work unhindered because of a lack of something. The streets here are almost all rough hewn cobblestone which wreaks havoc on shoes and feet, but my shoes are amazing so my feet stay healthy. 

The weather here in São Chico stays wet. there is a lot of rain and many days a sinister mist blows in making it so you can barely see anything and everything stays wet! it´s very interesting! mornings are cold and it will generally stay cold throughout the day too. but i like the cold.  so i usually will wear a short-sleeve shirt. everyone here thinks i´m unnatural because of it too! here i´m know as the american who doesn´t feel cold, haha!

The Branch here in São Chico is small, really small! some Sundays we´ll have 40 people or less attend sacrament meetings! we don´t have a chapel here, so the church is renting the house of a doctor who died of cancer a few years back. it´s big enough for all the functions of a normal sunday here, but it´s still tiny! honestly i think it´s super cool!

Right now Brazil is having some problems with government, i think it has something to do with payment of workers or something like that, but i really don´t know exactly is going on. anyways people are starting to protest. although São Chico is tiny, people are staring to protest here too. This past sunday as a form of protest all the truckdrivers in São Chico drove thre trucks to the Center (or main street) and started driving nice and slowly honking their horns the whole way down the street! it was super loud and annoying! and right in the middle of Church! 
yeah, so that happened! 

But the branch here, although small, is amazing! The leaders here try to have an activity for the young mean and young women every saturday! they were going to go camping this week, but it was super cold so they ended up canceling. but instead of leaving saturday without an activity, they decided to do a service project. thy planted flowers in the front of the building and cut the lawn out back! it doesn´t sound like much, but the lawn is a monster! when they finished there was a pile of grass in the back corner of the church lot a foot taller than the tallest guy there! tons of grass! but what really impressed me is that a ton of the youth and the ward showed up just for the service of cutting the lawn! the people here are awesome!

We also started an english class here, so after the service project some of the people stayed and we taught them some phrases and the alphabet in english! it´s super fun and at time hilarious hearing the funny ways the Brazilians pronounce our english words!

Everything is going well out here!
Tudo Bem em Brazil!

Love you guys bunches
Te amo muito

Elder John D. Scarlett

Sao Francisco de Paula - Week 9

November 2, 2015

Hey guys! Like always this email will only be the highlights, as i a m still slacking a bit on memory and i´m still trying to start up my journal writing, but tudo bem! (all is well!)

I have very interesting companions! they both used to wrestle back in the day, one was actually almost a state champ! but anyways, us all being in the same house and all has ignited their desires to once again start wrestling! haha, it´s a total mess, they knock chairs over and papers will fly of tables at times! much flailing! but it´s incredibly funny because it´s never a fair fight, not because one is so much better than the other, but because on is super ticklish! he is ticklish like I've never imagined! one touch and he is immediately flailing on the floor hardly breathing! so in all actuality, these wrestling matches are more like tickle fights! all normal in the life of the missionary!

So i´m learning how to cook! Right not i can make a mean pastel! (one of the easiest things to make out here) but i´m learning how to cook right and beans (also easy) and pudin (little less easy) which is pronounced poo-geen. people out here love the american pancakes and will definitely love american chocolate chip cookies, if we could the the recipe right just once!

Anyways, sorry for the short email, i´m still getting better!
 But that all i have time for this week!
love you all!
Tudo Bem em Brazil!

Elder John D. Scarlett

Thursday, October 29, 2015

Sao Francisco de Paula - Week 8

My loco american companions!
October 26, 2015

Holy goodness is a mission great!
Like usual I don't remember the whole week so I'll share a few highlights!

For p-day last week we went up to Gramado to have p-day with some other missionaries in our zone. Gramado is a huge tourist city and is called "O Cidade de Amor" (City of Love) here. But I just call it "O Cidade do Chocolate" because there is tons of chocolate stores here and the all give free samples! Of course for p-day we walked down the street and visited all of them! I also bought my first shot glass (in Brazil) in Gramado. For those of you who don't know, I'm a big collector of shot glasses! And so my collection grows!

This week we received another missionary to break up our american trio! He's what we call a corta prazo (short term) here. That is a missionary whose home is in this mission. He's actually preparing to head up to New Jersey where he has been called to serve as a missionary!

Pesquisadores change regularly so its a bit hard to remember stories about them but we have a good pool here and the work is still going great!!

As for a brief nugget for you guys: 2 Nephi 30-32 is a prophecy about Joseph Smith and The Book of Mormon. Really cool reading it while keeping in mind the perspectives of the Nephites and the perspective of Joseph Smith while the translating of the plates!

I might start sending out picture emails to those who want them, but you guys need to send me an email so I know you want them!

Tudo Bem em Brazil!

Elder John D. Scarlett

My latest sketch :)

Sao Francisco de Paula - Week 7

Our District
October 19, 2015

Ba! This past week was a bit crazy! Like I explained in the last email, we received our third american missionary for our companionship - Elder Gardener! He´s a fantastic missionary, very well in tune with his purpose as a missionary and he's fluent!  He's been out one his mission for about 1 year and 2 months (I think) while my other companion, Elder Pryor, has been serving for a little over 1 year, but is still smoothing out his Portuguese because he served his first 6 months in Las Vegas while waiting for his Visa.  And ME!! The super greeny who's only served for about 2 months! :D

It´s a much harder work in São Francisco de Paula with only three missionaries. This because in normal transfers, we usually have two pairs of missionaries, one pair for each side of S. F. de Paula, but now we only have us three for the entire area! Talk about walking!  One day this past week, we had one set of lessons on the exact opposite sides of the area! Great time for contacting! The entire pool of pesquisadores (investigators) changed and now we´re building up a new pool of pesquisadores that I'm really coming to love!

The President of the branch (small congregation in the church) here is amazing! You can tell his entire heart is focused on this branch, and he really wants to help it grow! He helps us as much as possible, which is an incredible thing for him to do considering he live in another city! He cheers with us, and cries with us, teaches us, and at time even chastises us too! He's an amazing man out here, and in reality, a total fish out of water.

To answer Sister Cran's question to me, I love Portuguese but I still have a long ways to go! Everyone tells me that my Portuguese is fantastic for where I am. This is my first time learning Portuguese so I don't know how fast fast is and how slow slow is. But I love it! I'mm being patient and learning every day!

As for the Nugget this week, I read in 3 Nephi this week and I like the lesson taught in the first 4 verses. 

Nephi finishes praying with Heavenly Father and goes into the tend of his father Lehi. Immediately Lehi tells Nephi about a dream he received, in which he was commanded that Nephi and his brothers were to return to Jerusalem and retrieve the plates of Brass from Laban. The principle I took from this simple story I like to call the Feed N´ Go. Simply, Heavenly Father loves us and is willing and ready to feed us, whether it be through revelation, spiritual blessings, temporal blessings, or some other form. However, after we receive these things, we are usually given instruction and are put to work. 

In the life of Moses, he saw the burning bush, and he was called as a prophet, who clearly worked a lot!
The Prophet Joseph Smith received The First Vision and immediately started to prepare, through diligent work, to do his work which would come 9 years later. The best of all examples is Jesus Christ, who in His life time, lived by "every word proceeding from the mouth of God." His works are of the best nature, which is of an Eternal nature. It is my firm testimony that if we should follow this pattern of receiving and then going to work, sharing freely the things we have received and following those instructions or commandments given by God. We will, by natural consequence, end up falling into place among those great examples in the Kingdom of God.

There is my Nugget! hope you enjoy!
Love you all!
Tudo Bem em Brazil!

ELDER Scarlett

Sao Chico (no more B!) - Week 6

October 12, 2015

So first a little explanation - transfers are periods of time during the mission, each lasting 6 weeks. At times, at the end of a transfer, missionaries are moved from one area within the mission to another area in the mission, complete with a new companion who they will work with in that area.
This is the end of my first transfer within the mission! I'm 6 weeks old! But as a newbie, I still have another transfer (6 weeks) of training with a trainer. What usually happens - a new missionary gets the entire 12 weeks with a trainer to learn Portuguese and the in and outs of the mission. But for me, not so much. My trainer and companion, Elder Gomes, got a phone call from the President of the mission who informed him that he would be transferred to an area where he was needed more. Super unusual! 

Also, there are two areas in Sao Chico, each with a set of two missionaries.  One set of those missionaries was taken out and reassigned. So I'm staying in my area, which is twice as large, with two missionaries american as my companions. BA! dois americanos para companheiros é muito estranho!

On another note, this week has been a total blast! One special thing happened when we visited the house of one of our pesquisadores (someone investigating the church) who was baptized the first week of this transfer But not yet confirmed. We visited her house and her family (I love them!) and they said they would come to church this Sunday for her to be confirmed! (Yay!!) but a little surprise for us, her son had just turned eight and was excited to be baptized too! BA! A little missionary surprise for us! We had the confirmation and the baptism this Sunday, and they were bother super great! That family is something else!
A special shout out to Alec Dawson, my cuz! Elder Martines, who served with him in Salta Argentina, is serving here in the Porto Alegre North Mission now. He was trained in this mission by my trainer! So in mission genealogy, he's my brother, and Alec's new cousin! We´re all a big happy family!

I love you all and would love to hear more from you guys! 
Tudo Bem em Brazil!

ELDER Scarlett

Sao Chico B - Week 5

October 5, 2015

Sorry for this short email, I honestly can't remember much about this week.

But here is what I do remember:
1 - A lot of good study (you should read Jesus The Christ!)
2 - A benchmark in getting better with portuguese!
3 - A few new golden Pesquisadores (investigators)
4 - Watching conference with one of my favorite families out here!
5 - Baptizing members of said family!
6 - A wonderful General Conference!

I´ll try to get more out to you guys next week, i need to start writing in a Journal so I can better lay these things out for you guys!  Still getting in the groove out here! T
here is a lot of work to do!

But i love you guys!
Tudo Bem em Brazil!

ELDER Scarlett

Sao Chico B - Week 4

September 28, 2015

Oi minha povo! Eu vocês amo!

I don´t know if you guys know or not, but I think everyone here knows - the dollar gained about one-third of it´s original value! Which means here 1 dollar used to be worth 3 Reals, but now it´s 4, so all the Americans here just got a little richer! To celebrate I bought the four of us missionaries in our district some Pizza! It was so good! but I totally forgot to take pictures to show you guys the difference between American and Brazilian pizza. Darn....
Guess I´ll have to buy more!

I've had a couple of really cool experiences with the spirit this week! 

The first one happened in the house of a mother living with some of her teenage children. We met them by "knocking on their door" (which actually entails clapping outside their gate, because every house has a gate, and you clap instead of knock). We gave the first lesson and I usually give the part about Joseph Smith, his question, The First Vision, and what that means about the Church today. I'm able to use mostly my own words now, but it was weird this time. When I started talking, I had everyone's attention (which was an accomplishment with this family) at first because I was an American speaking Portuguese, but after a few minutes, that wasn't the case. You could feel the power in the room. The Holy ghost lit a fire and the force was physical. During The First Vision story, I have no doubt they felt the Power of The Holy Ghost - truly an incredible experience.

Me and Elder Gomez, my Trainer
Another time, one of our greatest pesquisadores (investigators) invited us to a meeting much like AA in the USA, but for drugs and the families affected by these things too. It was like a comfort group people could come to for help and strength. It was run by another church but it reminded me of the 12 step program we have, just a little different and honestly a bit less organized. Anyways, they explained what the purpose of it was to us and then my companion, Elder Gomez, bore his testimony. Everyone would start talking about any problem or success they were having, sharing words of encouragement and words to help strengthen each other. It was really cool to watch though, I usually didn't understand enough to get anything out of it. Instead I was drawn up in thought most of the time. A firm testimony formed in my head, many things I knew would be of strength and comfort to them, many things that the restored Gospel of Jesus Christ could bring into their lives as a strength for the rest of their lives. I never got the chance to bear my testimony that night or to talk to them, instead I left with another experience with the Holy Ghost. Every last though that came into my mind, I know was inspired. Connections were made, and revelation was given insomuch that I did learn many things only through pondering and listening to the words of the Spirit. It was a great experience and one of great help in my mission experience so far.

I've had other experiences too and I'd love to share them, but now I'll close by sharing another nugget.

The Gift of the Holy Ghost, which you receive after Baptism, is one of the greatest treasures you will ever receive. The Holy Ghost is real, he has much power. The simple fact of his purpose is to testify of Christ, and also to testify of all truth. He has power to bring many things to your remembrance, and through these things, give strong revelation and testimony. But, work is involved on our part. We have to study, because he can only work with the things we already have in our memory. We have to ponder and pray so that we can have the spirit with us as we study and ponder. Lastly, we always have to be worthy to receive the spirit. This requires many things, not the least of which is being obedient to the Commandments of God. Possibly most important is that we need our minds to be clean of trash, our thoughts need to be garnished "with virtue unceasingly"  It's a very simple principle we are taught many times in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, but I can now say that I know it to be a true principle.

My invitation to you is to search for opportunities to invite the spirit into your lives. Learn more about how the Holy Ghost works with us. As you study, as you pray, and you go about your daily business, listen for promptings of The Holy Ghost, and follow them. For those who aren't members of  The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, ask about the Gift of the Holy Ghost. It's really a beautiful blessing you can receive in your life.

Also General conference is coming up!  All are always invited to watch, It's on the church website for those without TV (like we are back home! NETFLIX FOREVER!).  It's a good opportunity to learn about the spirit, and to receive promptings.  I invite you to listen to the words of the Prophet, and of the Quorum of the Twelve about the Holy Ghost. And my last invitation is to think about any question that you might want answered, a question that is important to you and ultimately could help you in your every day activities, and pray about it before watching the sessions. Nothing is better for receiving answers and revelation than praying about questions!

That´s all i have for today!
Love you guys!
Tudo Bem em Brazil!

Elder John D. Scarlett

Burned my hand cooking
What I was cooking when I burned my
hand - and it was worth it!

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Sao Chico B - Week 3

September 21, 2015

Hello all my beloved friends! I love you all!  This week has been great! I can never remember everything that happened for each day of the week, so  won´t be giving a weekly summary but here are the highlights.

Yesterday we had 4 baptisms! Brazil is crazy with baptisms! Our goal as a mission is to have a very minimum of 6 baptisms per 6 weeks or 1 per week. In some places that is crazy, but out here in Brazil, the field is white and ready to harvest! So many people here are prepared to hear about the gospel! There are a lot of people who just let us in to be nice, and listen to our message for the same reason. But there are tons of people who really hunger and want to hear the message! I love these people!

The baptisms we had this week were three young boys, two of which were brothers, and the other a good friend of theirs. The last was a 38 year old woman named Chris, who's husband is a reactivated member and son a recent convert.

The three boys are nuts! The brothers remind me of my cousins, Troy and Clay when they were younger. They're awesome, and their Grandmother has a date for baptism too! The whole family is awesome and I can always feel love in their home!  To illustrate how crazy these boys can be, one tried to jump back into the font after he was baptized because the water was so nice and warm. We had to hold him back - very interesting baptism! :D

The baptism of Chris was super great - there were a lot of people there and she was able to be baptized by her husband. it was a good baptism to witness. The spirit was there and was strengthened by the friendships she had with those who were present from the branch.

We usually are in the house of a member every Sunday night, and we love visiting the house of Maria. Usually there are about 2-3 boys and 3-4 girls along with Maria and her husband. I'm still not sure who exactly is family and who isn't... There is a game we like to play with them where you have a cup with a little bit of water which is used to splash the face of a victim. The person with the cup chooses a subject such as colors, fruits, soccer teams, etc. and then secretly chooses an item from the chosen subject and writes it on a piece of paper (for validation purposes). Every person guesses items from the subject, and when someone says the specific item chosen by the cup-holder, they become  a victim of the cup of water. Then they restart the process.  Usually games like this are referred to as brincadeiras, which is a word that roughly means joke, or jokes. It's the word usually used for games and activities like this.

Another very eventful thing happened this morning! I was making giobadia (a food made with cheese and fruit jelly wrapped in a pastel tortilla and fried in vegetable oil), and I put a good amount of vegetable oil into the pan and proceeded to fry them. A couple times some oil jumped out and got me on the arm. Not too bad. I flipped a giobadia and a good bit of oil jumped out and got me in the hand and up my arm. So now I have a couple good 1° burns up my arm and a decent sized 2° on my hand. It's a little gruesome looking, but with a little first aid it feels all right. Still looks gruesome though!  Totally worth it, those giobadias are good! :D

I'll send picture when i finally get my memory card to work along with a video of the jokes!

As for my nugget this week:

Every night I read in Jesus the Christ until it's time to turn the lights out. I've listened to The Garden all the way through a couple times already too. These two resources have brought me so much closer in knowledge to Christ. I understand his mission more every day. I understand his love, and the love of Our Father, of which He testifies with His every action. 

One thing I've realized is the faith of all the prophets who came before Christ. Every one of these righteous men had only their testimonies of the Christ who would come, as well as the testimonies of those who came before them. They knew not of His mission in its entirety, and they, as well as us, could never hope to comprehend the entirety of it all.  But it is my testimony, as well as the testimony of many prophets, that Christ did come. He performed the Atonement. He suffered and died for each one of us, that we might be saved from our weaknesses and sins.

Christ Lives. He is our one and only true friend. He loves us, and wants to help us. Of these thing I bear my own personal testimony.

I invite all of you to come unto Christ, read the works of the Bible, and the Book of Mormon, along with the words of the prophets we have today. They are the words of God, untainted by the philosophies of man, and will bring every person closer to Him and His love. Pray about these works to know that they are true. They will bring you the greatest treasure of happiness that are possible in this life!

"If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, who giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be Given him." James 1:5

Also:  Moroni 10:3-5

I love you guys! 
I´m still normal! i promise!
Tudo bem em Brazil!
Ate Mais

Elder John D. Scarlett

Sao Chico B - Week 2

September 14, 2015

My companion's name is Elder Gomez. He's from São Paulo and he's a really cool guy and a hard worker in the field! He doesn't speak English, which is good because it forces me to learn. He's really patient with me and my lack of experience with Portuguese and the work.

My area is called São Chico B in the zone Gravataí - It's a small town called São Francisco de Paulo and has a very small branch. This week we almost hit our goal to get 80 people in sacrament meeting, we ended up only having around 76 but the Chapel was full to the brim. That shows two things - how small this Branch is, and how great the work is going!

The food is great! Almoço (lunch) is always with a member and you can always count on having rice and beans. That's good because I love rice and beans! They tell you to eat as much as you want, but usually I only get 2-3 plates.

The people are so great in this Branch! Sometimes I feel like I'm at a Dawson Family Reunion, but everyone speaks Portuguese! There are a couple of super strong families here I absolutely love visiting! The people here have really touched my heart and I love them all! 

I´m healthy, though I've been eating more snacks lately and fruits and vegetables can be hard to come by during the day, but my body is adjusting well! I sleep great every night, allergies are the same, and i haven't gained much weight, but i can feel the muscles in my arms and my core degrading, and the muscles in my legs getting super tight, so i need to exercise more with my arms and core, but other than those, I'm still great! 

Gotta go! love you!
Stay strong, stay safe!
have faith, and keep working!

Até mais!

Elder John D. Scarlett

Sao Chico B - Week 1

September 7, 2015

Things are fantastic in Brazil! I´m actually surprised and a bit worried about that! Everyone says it's always the first few weeks that are hard - but for me, this just feels normal! I was a little shy at first but now I do contacts without a second thought, I can just talk to people.

Since I've arrived I've had absolutely no fears about anything. Nunca!! And it freaks me out a bit! Haha, I'´m just talking with people and I have the smallest grip on the language that I could possibly have! The only thing I could come up with that´s getting me through this is the fact that I've come so much closer with my Heavenly Father during my time at the CTM. I've really come to know more about the Atonement and Jesus Christ and how much Heavenly Father loves all his children, especially me! In the CTM I could literally feel the seed of faith growing in me as I dedicated time to study the gospel, and tried to keep the commandments! I feel the Love of Christ every day, for me and for my pesquisadors! 

Right now the only thing that is hard for me is being away from my family, all of you guys! I've been reading Grandma Dawson's history and I just wanted to be with you guys and just sit down and talk! I couldn't help but tear up. They were precious stories for me and I'll be treasuring those for a long time!

I want to hear some updates about what´s going on at home! :)
Love you lots
Tudo Bem!

Elder John D. Scarlett