Monday, April 25, 2016

6 Meses??? How'd that happen???

6 Meses??? How´d that happen???

This week was my official 6 months in Brazil, wooo hooo!!! Time is so weird on the mission because you have days that feel like weeks, but the weeks feel like days and then before you know it you're already a third of the way done with your mission! I had pretty much the best 6 month celebrations anyone could ask for because Tuesday we got to go to the temple which is always great, and Wednesday President and Sister Broadbent came to our apartment for interviews.

Presidente is seriously such a spiritual, loving, inspired man and he's like a 2nd dad. And just like my real dad, he loves to make super bad dad jokes and spend lots of money at fancy restaurants, which is great for us because after our interviews he took us to the nicest place in town, and when the server asked if we wanted multiple courses or just the entree, Pres. Broadbent threw his hands in the air and was like, "We want it all!!" and it was super hilarious. I love that guy.

The next day we ate a huge lunch at an Irmã's house, and afterwards me and Sister B. were both clutching our stomachs like "Woah I'm never gonna eat again, why did I do that?" and then literally 3 hours later we were walking back from an appointment and this Churro truck drove by, and we both stopped and looked at each other and then took off running down the street after the churros, and it was a beautiful moment in our companionship.

Another great moment occurred shortly thereafter when a car pulled over next to us and the guy driving was like, "Hi I need some help with directions", and I was like, "Okay cool, where are you going?" and super seriously he was like, "I'm looking for.. the road to your heart", and I started laughing so hard, and he just grinned and drove away. Oh São Paulo, with your smooth moves.

Anyways, thank you for reading another issue of "Ribeirão Pires: Greatest Hits", featuring yours truly. We've been working hard in the EXTREME heat these past few weeks and even though we sometimes get stressed out and tired and rejected, it´s all worth it. This week we will hopefully be going to baptize Mariana, a young lady who´s been going to church this past month and loving it. She's so smart and eager to learn about the gospel, and I´m so excited to continue helping her to grow her relationship with God! Love you all lots and thank you for your prayers and good vibes :)


Sister Curtis


Monday, April 11, 2016



(One thing you need to know about Kenzie that will make this post even more interesting is that she really loves avocados. She practically lived on them her Freshman year at BYU).

This week was super fast and we worked super hard, and it was like a million degrees every day, but it was a good one. First, here are some spiritual missionary highlights of the week:
- Guilherme was baptized, woo hoo!!! We met him a few weeks ago on splits because he just showed up at church and was like,  "I'm here, teach me", so all of us sisters taught him together these past two weeks, and he was literally a gift from the heavens because he's perfect and didn't have a single problem that he needed to work on and yeah, it was a huge miracle.
- We started teaching Jonny this week who´s been attending church for 5 months and is ready and willing to be baptized. He shared his testimony with us this week during our lesson and at the end of it he said, "Thank you for teaching me about Joseph Smith. I knew a little about him but not the whole story, and wow I'm so glad I finally got to hear about it all. I know this church is true and I want to be baptized and belong to this church."  Wowowow, how awesome is that!!!! It's a little complicated with the ward boundaries, but we're gonna work everything out get him down in the water asap :) 

Second, I've been skimping on the awkward/funny/weird stuff that happens on the regular so here is a compilation of Ribeirão´s Greatest Hits:
- There´s this old guy called João that sells candy in the bus station at night, and he only has one tooth located exactly in the middle of his head, and he loves us and sometimes gives us free chocolate (not as creepy as it sounds).
- Last week Sister Bennallack had to use the bathroom really bad but we were in the middle of the mato (aka jungle) and she couldn't wait, so she just went a little ways off the road in the trees and did what she had to do. 
- Also Sister B. has some sandals that she loves but have been falling apart for months, and the strap broke off while we were super far from home and so we bought some 5 cent gum and chewed until we got the flavor out and then stuck the strap back onto the shoe, and it totally worked!! (for like an hour lol) 
- As missionaries we have to be able to know which people could be compatible together for lessons. or who would make good friends in order for our investigators to feel more comfortable in church. But we've started using our powers in a different way and are now infamous in our ward for match-making. For instance, recent convert Clovis has gone to family home evenings in the houses of many different single sisters with us these past few months, and with a little luck I´ll get to attend a wedding before my time is up here in Brasil ;) 
-You know you spend too much time with someone when you literally don't know who is who anymore and totally forget your own name and introduce yourself as Sister Bennallack on accident, oops.
-Yesterday we were walking up this huge hill and I was just about to complain when I saw something on the ground out of the corner of my eye. I picked it up and it was an avocado!! I looked around and like 5 feet away was another one, and there wasn't a tree or anything just 2 perfectly good avocados in the road, and I know what your gonna say, "Sister Curtis, please tell me you didn't leave such a benevolent gift from the heavens lying in the street like that?" Well don't you worry because I totally just gave a gloria for the manna we received, plopped it in my bag, and kept on walking. Miracles are real friends. 

love you all lots and have a great week!

Sister Curtis

Sent from my iPad

Monday, April 4, 2016

well, well, well

We had transfers last night and well, wouldn't ya know it, WE ALL STAYED (the sisters that is). It came as a surprise because Sisters Moura and Das Graças fight like a married couple, but we're all happy to be together for the third transfer. It was a little sad because our district leader, Elder Alvim, got transferred and our district had really become family, but he´s moving on to bigger and better things so tudo bem.

In other news, this weekend was awesome because General Conference!! Woo hoo!!! I don't know if you all are aware but #LDSConf is almost as good as Christmas for missionaries and Sister Bennallack and I got to watch most of it in English which was a double bonus!! I laughed, I cried (a lot), and was so, so, so uplifted and inspired. I cant put into words how grateful I am to have the opportunity to be a representative of Jesus Christ here in Brazil and share His perfect gospel with the people here. It´s rewarding sometimes, it´s hard ALL the time, and I wouldn't have it any other way.

Like Elder Waddell said in his talk this weekend, the invitation of discipleship is the invitation to walk with Christ to Gethsemane, to Calvary, to the tomb, and then to the Kingdom of our Father. Dallin H. Oaks said "Mortal life wasn't meant to be easy or continually pleasant." We are here to work, to grow, and to learn. Our perfect Christ had to work and sweat and agonize to fulfill HIs purpose here, so why should it be different for us? I am so grateful for the chance I have to show the Lord that I want to change, I want to be more like Him, and I´m willing to work for it.

 I thought a lot about the words to a beloved hymn this week, "Nearer my God to thee, Nearer to thee, Even though it be a cross that raiseth me". I´m grateful for my challenges and trials, and every GIANT hill I have to walk up, and every door that gets slammed in my face, and every drunk guy that asks if my black 6' 6" District Leader is my brother (".. yes, yes he is"), and then starts throwing the deodorant he´s trying to sell at us (I do not recommend this as a business model). I know that the path we walk as disciples of Christ is straight, and narrow, and challenging, but I also know that our Savior is right there beside us every step of the way. He will help you if you just ask for Him too. He knows you perfectly, and He loves you perfectly, and He's anxiously waiting for you to let Him in, so please, let Him in.

Love you all lots and hope you have a wonderful week :)

Sister Curtis