Monday, April 3, 2017

one..... BLAST OFF!!!!!!

one..... BLAST OFF!!!!!!

What a week this was! I think it was one of the most uplifting, insightful weeks of my mission and I didn't even have time to blink before it passed me right by. There were lots of highlights but I want to share some of the most important ones with you all.

First off, I had the opportunity to converse with and visit several of my recent converts and pass a little time with them and WOW, I just can't even explain how wonderful it was to see how these people I love so much are learning and growing in the gospel. They are serving as leaders, some by calling but all by example, they're preparing to soon make and keep sacred temple covenants, serve missions, and begin their own eternal families. They are continuing to nourish their faith and testimonies, keep their baptismal covenants and are inviting others to do the same.

What a sacred and marvelous feeling I felt blossom bigger and bigger in my heart as I saw and heard and testified of the blessings of conversion and obedience to the restored gospel of Jesus Christ. The Lord truly has a perfect eternal plan for each of us to return to His presence and what a special privilege and blessing it is to be a part of the eternal plan of such wonderful people.

I have felt the words of John 15:6: two years ago when I was submitting my mission call I didn't choose to serve here, the Lord chose me. He ordained me to serve to bring forth fruit, and truly because of the things I asked the father in the name of the Son, that fruit has not only remained but flourished. "And if it so be that you should labor all your days in crying repentance unto this people, and bring, save it be one soul unto me, how great shall be your joy with him in the kingdom of my Father! And now, if your joy will be great with one soul that you have brought unto me into the kingdom of my Father, how great will be your joy if you should bring many souls unto me!" How great is my joy!!!

These truly have been the most challenging, inspiring, miraculous, joyous, incredible, blessed 18 months of my life. I have not only learned more about my Savior, but I have truly come to know Him. I have learned to recognize His voice and trust in His words, trust enough to act on them. I didn't just learn more about my purpose here on earth, I came to know with a surety who I really am: a beloved child of a loving Heavenly Father who truly does know and love each of us perfectly and individually, who yearns for our eternal success and happiness.

I have seen time and time again that God truly has not ceased to be a God of miracles, that faith and prayer are principles of power, and that when we ask in faith with nothing wavering with the disposition to act on the answer, the Lord shall make it known unto us, every time.

I know that Jospeh Smith was called of God to be a prophet and restore His church here on the earth in these the last days. I know that this is that church, the only place that has the keys necessary for us to one day return to our Father in Heaven and live there with our families forever. I'm so so so grateful for this gospel, for the Book of Mormon which is truly the word of God, for modern day Prophets and apostles and for continuing revelation. I know that these things are true and invite you to ask God, in faith, nothing wavering, if they really are and I know beyond a shadow of a doubt that He will confirm the truth unto you.

I love you all and am grateful for your continuing support and hey guess what.... SEE YA SOON!!!!

-Sister Kenzie Curtis
(Missão São Paulo Sul, A Melhor Missão do Mundo!)

Monday, March 27, 2017

TWO

Bom dia fam!!!

The time is passing so fast, everything is like a blur and I honestly can´t even remember everything that happened this week haha. I don't have much time this week to talk but something that I did remember was thinking about when I was praying in the temple some three months ago asking the Lord to help me do my utmost in my last months and to know and feel that I was really helping people and doing his work. I have felt that be confirmed to me so strongly here in Bristol Park, Not only with investigators but with members and my companion as well.

This week I spoke with a recent convert and she shared with me some amazing experiences that she had recently, and that her mother is taking a preparation classes to go through the temple soon, and how she´s gonna get her young women´s medallion. I can not even explain how happy I am for her. The mission is so incredible, I get more grateful every day to be able to be here in Brazil helping all these incredible people!.

Love y'all lots and don't worry, my next email's gonna make up for this one haha.

Love,
Sister Curtis

Monday, March 20, 2017

THREE

THREE

Well this week was an interesting one. Even here on the tail-end there are still lots of first experiences to be had! For example I got a bad cold and went to the doctor for the first time in Brasil and wow! So many sights and sounds and needles being wiggled around in my arm and waiting for 3 hours to receive a prescription for... TYLENOL AND COUGH SYRUP. Incredible. (I'm fine now, it really was just a cold). Also we made the Brazilian equivalent of a GIGANTIC key lime pie, and while it wasn't very visually appealing, it turned out delicious (#JáPodeCasar hahaha).

But back to the good stuff:
So the first 2 weeks of this transfer were pretty tough, with people pretending not to be home, not doing commitments, parents who didn't wanna let their kids be baptized, etc, etc ...  nothing new for missionary life, but I was feeling the pressure from myself to meet all of the goals I had created and was a little disappointed to not be able to meet all of them.

BUUUTTTT, after much prayer and some very great Sunday school classes, I was feeling better this week and on Thursday we had interviews with President which helped me so much. Despite not talking much about how I had been feeling, he already knew and told me that he knew that I love the Lord and that I wanted to show my love for Him by working hard, and that both he and Heavenly Father know that I am doing my best even when I don't achieve everything I want to and that they accept and are happy about with what I have to offer. Wow, talk about pep-talk of the year! I left so light and happy and energized!!

We also taught one of our golden investigators and we thought she was going to have to get married. but she told us that she and her boyfriend believe and keep the law of chastity and she is already quitting coffee and will be baptized in two weeks !!! And our convert Rosângela took her sister to church and she is loving it and is gonna be baptized too!! AND we marked the date of the wedding of an eternal investigator and she will finally be baptized (the week after I come back of course haha) !!! What miracles !!!

I know that like President said, no one is perfect and no one is going to achieve 100% of everything that they want too, but that's not what the Lord asks of us. He asks us to give Him our everything, to do our very absolute best and then He promises to take care of the rest. If there´s one thing I've learned over the past 18 months, it's just that. God is a loving Father who delights with us in our progress and picks us back up when we fall down so that we can try again and again until we get it right. I know that Jesus Christ lives and loves us, and that because of He who was perfect, we don´t have to be yet, but that by Him and through Him we one day can be.

Love y'all lots and hope ya have a great week!!!

-Sister Curtis

Monday, March 13, 2017

T - Minus One Day

T - Minus One Month

Well fam, the inevitable countdown has officially begun now that we've arrived at the one month remaining mark (No I don't know how many days or hours there are left nor do I want to).

This week was another toughy but a goody since we gave it our all and learned a lot through the ups and downs. After conversing with the grandma of one of our investigators for almost 2 hours, we finalllyyyy got her to give permission for her granddaughter to get baptized and we were so excited but then our investigator decided that she didn't really wanna be baptized yet and wow talk about a bummer.

Sometimes even when we do our very best and work our hardest things don't work out exactly how we want them too. It´s difficult sometimes to accept the fact that we can´t control everything, especially things that involve the agency of other people. But our agency is a precious gift granted to each of us and wow, how Im grateful for it. God does't force anyone to Heaven; He lovingly-if sometimes firmly-invites us to follow His example of our own free will.

Although this is a great comfort and important truth, it´s still hard to accept sometimes and Sister Wright and I were a little down and out about not being able to meet all of our goals this week. But then Sunday came and wow, what a day of spiritual enlightenment. After 2 wonderful classes at church, we went to our fast and testimony meeting and who got up to share their testimonies but Ingrid and Carol, two of our recent converts. Ingrid told of how grateful she was for her baptism and how much she has been learning in Young Women's and how she feels like she changes for the better a little more every day because of that. Afterwards, we ended by singing "Come Come Ye Saints" and I felt the spirit whispering in my heart that All Is Well, and that Heavenly Father accepts my best efforts even when I don't always meet all of my own goals and that He really does have a perfect plan for each of us.

I know that these things are true and I´m grateful to have the right to choose my own path, to be able to choose the path that the Savior laid out for me to follow. We´re not perfect but we can choose to be better every day, to accept the sacrifice that the Lord has made for us and to become perfected in Him.

Love y'all oodles and oodles,

Sister Curtis

Monday, March 6, 2017

Ain't Life Grand

Well after 6 weeks just breezin on by, this week was a good ole fashioned kick in the teeth! Haha, opposition in all things was our lesson, but I was able to have some important insights through the tough days.

All of our youth came back from camp this week and were talking about how amazing it was. I was thinking about all our young investigators and recent converts and how amazing they are. One is 10 years old and almost lives alone because her mother works in the street to support her addictions but she goes to church by herself (and takes her sister and some neighbors too) every week and fulfills all her commitments and helped her mother to stop drinking. Another young girl who is going to be baptized prays for her father to stop drinking and wants to be baptized to be a light in his life. One young woman's mother left her for drugs and her father isn't much better, but she also goes to church alone and takes care of all her cousins. One young lady's mother is deceased and the father drinks too much but she is finally happy because of the gospel, when we found her, she had a dark cloud above her but now she shines. Another friend has physical disabilities but is finding self-confidence through the gospel.

We had stake conference yesterday and President Mendes said something that really struck a chord. He told the parents to look at their children and think about how these children are STRONG, they are not weak, they lived with heavenly father for millions of years before they lived here and they are better able to endure challenges than we can imagine. It was incredible and I know it is true for both youth and children.

This week was the hardest week I've had in a long time, almost everything went wrong but we kept on truckin. We went out with our friend Vitoria and took her to have an ice cream with us and see what she really thought about baptism and the church and everything because she does not open easily and just let the grandmother send her. We talked to her and she told us that she really wants to be baptized but her grandmother does not like the church and even living with her mother, grandma is a legal guardian and does not want to let her. But we´re gonna do our best to help her see the blessings that come from the gospel.

As Sister Wright and I sat listening to conference a little sad on Sunday, a little girl ran up to us and gave us a big kiss and a smile and ran away, I looked at Sister Wright and smiled and said "That was a kiss from God, He Is still happy with us." It was a very sweet moment, and I could feel the Savior's love for me, for us, and for his children. He is helping us and will continue to do so forever.

Love y'all lots and hope ya have a great week!!!
-Sister Curtis


Wednesday, March 1, 2017

THE BEGINNING OF THE END (but forreals this time)

THE BEGINNING OF THE END (but forreals this time)

This week was INCREDIBLE, and sadly I Don´t have time or capacity to share everything that happened sufficiently. I've never had so many moments where I thought "well I think our luck has run out, we've used up all our miracles" and then BAM, MIRACLE!!!!!! I think that happened about a million and one times. Example one: a member passed a referral for us the other week and we visited her last Sunday and taught her real quick and when we came back a couple days later and asked her if she had prayed and what she liked about what we had talked about and she said "Yeah, I loved when we were talking, especially about baptism, I love to learn about baptism!!" and I smiled really big at her and said "Hey, we do too!!!", and we invited her to be baptized and she accepted very happily! (along with 3 more amazing people that the Lord literally put right in our path.)

We also had the baptism of Carol this week and it was wonderful. She and her family were so happy for her to enter onto the path to the eternities! And she's already started her member missionary work by bringing her sister and neighbor to church (that are also going to be baptized! Woohoo!!!)

This week was such a testament to how much the Lord works with us. We were just trucking along trying to find new people to teach and serve, not really knowing where to find them, and it was amazing to see how as we were working the Lord just put the people we needed to find literally right in our path. I'm so grateful to be a servant of God, and to do not my will but His, because I know that's how miracles take place. Love y'all lots and hope ya have a great week!!

- Sister Curtis

pics- baptismo, RAINBOW AFTER THE BAPTISM, weird fruit that I love (pinha do norte)

Monday, February 20, 2017

Baptism X 2

What a long week!! We both got a pretty bad flu (Sister Wright was worse) and it was a crisp 100 degrees pretty much every day. BUT, with a LOT of help from the Lord, our plans worked out and we had 2 very special baptisms this week. On Saturday it was Cristina's. She is a very special woman because she has some disabilities, but even so she is very friendly and lively and happy. Regiane (Vinicius' mom) has basically adopted her and she was always there when we taught her kids and family. We never invited Cristina to be baptized because we did not know if she needed to be, but she spoke to us after a few weeks of hearing the lessons and said "I want to be baptized because I know that's what Jesus wants me to do." What a sweet moment that was. She goes to church every week and to all the activities, and we talked with her dad and some ward members and with the mission president and she was interviewed and president said that if she really wanted to then she could be baptized. Her baptism was very spiritual. You could feel almost palpably that Heavenly Father was happy with her earnest and sincere desire to follow Christ and do what is right.

On Sunday it was Rosângela´s, a young lady that we met the second week of the transfer. I made contact with her aunt my first day in Parque Bristol at 9:25 p.m. on the way home. She is an incredible girl, has 8 siblings and a ton of nieces an nephews that all live together, but she has very strong faith and is a person truly humble of heart. She even got one of her sisters to come to church with her on Sunday!

The Lord truly has so many people prepared for us to find, people who are just ready and waiting to enter onto the path that leads to eternal life, the path of happiness here and in the world to come. What a privilege it is to be His servant, and instrument in His hands, and to help His children come unto Him now and forever.

Love y'all lots and hope this week is a great one!!!

-Sister Curtis

Monday, February 13, 2017

Golden Eye

Golden Eye,

What a week!! As you all already know, I'm not one to wait to share good news so... MELISSA WAS BAPTIZED!!! WOO HOO!!! Like just about every baptism, everything went super wrong until the very last minute when everything went right (we got locked in the chapel for 2 hours, nobody showed up on time, there weren't any jumpsuits and nobody had keys to the closets, ya know the usual...). But it was such a wonderful spiritual experience, and I know that Melissa is going to continue to be a shining example for her family as she continues to keep the covenants that she's made with our Heavenly Father.

That being said, I've realized that I haven't updated you guys on all the hilarious/ weird stuff that's happened to us in a while so let's take care of that.
-While still in Saúde we received a referral for a man called Jesus (thats not a normal name here either) and he called us and said that he was very anxious to hear the message we had to share with him so we marked to meet with him in the chapel. When he got out of his car with a tiny sniveling half dead dog in his arm and ceremoniously removed his sunglasses in front of us, I already had a good idea of how our meeting was gonna go. He walked in and stopped and looked at us and said "What if I said that my name is Jesus?" and I shrugged my shoulders and said "That's fine, it's your name."
"And what if I said after being baptized they called me Jesus of Nazareth?!"
"...well you can´t help what people call you."
 "...and what if I said that I AM THAT JESUS?!?!"
"Well I'm gonna have to stop you right there" I thought he was gonna get struck down right there in front of me after trying to convince us that he was Jesus for an hour, but finally an irmão showed up and they almost got in a fight and then we left and went to lunch :-)

-This week we were knocking doors in a neighborhood and heard a weird noise and we turned to look snd see what it was and there was a man with a horse in the middle of the street! I went running after him and asked for a photo and as I was petting the horse, the man said "she's beautiful, huh" and I thought he was talking about the horse and I agreed, but when I looked he was looking at Sister Wright ahahahahaha and he said "you have a boyfriend because I'm looking for a girlfriend" and I said "But you already have a horse!" And he replied, "but a little cat would be better ..." (in Brasil calling somebody a cat is like calling them hot) and I died laughing, I could not contain myself kkkkkkkk especially the expression of horror on Sister Wright's face when I explained what he said later.

- A lady talking to us on the street "yeah God is in everything, especially in nature. I like to talk to the trees because of that. The other day I was talking to a tree like usual and the tree talked backed!!!" okay...

- Yesterday we heard somebody calling our names and we looked around but we didn't see anybody, and they said, "Up here!" and there was a man camped out with all of his stuff in a tree, and we had a lesson with him in his tree. Nbd. (Maybe his was the tree that talked back to the other lady...)

- There´s a little girl that lives in our building and always tries to break into our apartment bc she loves us.

Yeah there's never a dull moment here in Brazil, gotta love it (and I do.)

Lots of  love,
Sister Curtis

Monday, February 6, 2017

HOWDY FAM!!!

HOWDY FAM!!!

Well the miracles have continued here in the best area in the world, and our lovely pesquisadora Ingrid was baptized on Saturday!!! Ingrid is 12 years old and looks even younger, but I can not  begin to describe the trials this young woman has faced or the victories that she has won. She's incredible and had been going to church for several months all by herself. She had been anxiously waiting for her grandmother's permission to be baptized but her grandmother wasn't having it. Other sisters had talked to her before and she hadn't budged, but we decided that it was our turn.

We had been trying to meet with Geny (gma) for 3 weeks and let me tell ya she's a tough little granny to find, but we finally went to where she works and we started talking to her. We talked about her family and how she´s raising 10 grandkids right now and doing her best and how Ingrid has been doing so much better after she started going to church. We talked about the blessings of baptism and the importance of it in our lives and she was agreeing with everything that we were saying and we were like, "So we want Ingrid to have these blessings to and we want to have her baptism this Saturday", and she said  "Well okay then."  WHHAATTTT....

Yeah, just that easy... I've said it once and I'll say it again (I'll say it a million times tbh), MILAGRES SÃO REAIS (MIRACLES ARE REAL). When we follow the Lord's commandment to invite all people to come unto Christ and we really do open our mouths in every occasion, the Lord blesses us to be able to say what He would have us to say and do what He would have us to do. This is His work and He is at the head of it. When we do His work His way, we cannot fail!!!

Love y'all lots and hope ya have a great week!!!

-Sister Curtis

Monday, January 30, 2017

I Stand All Amazed

"I Stand All Amazed"

The alternative title to this email is "Super Amazing Miracle Week #2!!!" but I thought a hymn quote might be a little more classy lol. As both titles suggest, it was another incredible week of blessings here in Parque Bristol! As we all know I'm no good at surprises so.. VINICIUS WAS BAPTIZED!!!! WOO HOO!!!

So we arranged to meet up with Vinicius and his family after the first hour of church because they had to go to a funeral early Sunday morning, and when we got there with a prayer in our hearts ... nothing. We came back after the second hour and .... no one. Sister Wright and I stood there looking at each other for a couple of minutes like "uhh, now what.." so we decided to say a prayer and in the middle of it we heard footsteps approaching. I immediately thought "Wow that was quick!" But it turned out to be the neighbor haha.

We went back to church and I was sitting there on the pew thinking what we could do to make this baptism happen today, and I was praying so hard that everything would work out. As I was pondering our options, someone went to sit down next to me and lo and behold, it was Vinicius and his family!!! It was a tremendous miracle!!

Then came the baptism and we went to get his jumpsuit out of the closet and first there wasn't a key, and then we took a look at the font it was dry as a bone. So we turned on the water and called in some reinforcements and we started filling up buckets to speed things up a little. All the while his little sister Maria was angry crying because she wanted to be baptized too (we already marked her baptism for her birthday ... in December, hahaha), BUT everything worked out !!!!!!!!

The moral of the story is this, "And this is the confidence that we have in him, that, if we ask any thing according to his will, he heareth us: And if we know that he hear us, whatsoever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we desired of him." (1 João 5:14-15). The power of prayer is real. When we do all that we can and we ask in faith, the Lord will respond to our prayers, The answer isn't always going to be "yes", a lot of the time it's "no" or "not yet", but He will always answer us and bless us in all of the ways that we need, which is much better than in the ways that we want. I love this gospel so much and I'm so grateful for the chance I have to share it with the people of São Paulo and with all of you.

Love y'all lots and hope you have a wonderful week!!

-Sister Curtis

Monday, January 23, 2017

"Parque Bristol: The Most Magical Place On Earth"

"Parque Bristol: The Most Magical Place On Earth"

Let me tell ya folks, if the title of this week's email didn't say it all I am SUPER SUPER HAPPY to be here in Parque Bristol with my new filha, Sister Wright!! She's from AmericanFork and is just starting out here in the best mission in the world, and we have some grande goals to do absolutely everything in our power to help this area grow and find the people that the Lord has prepared for us to help.

So we had to help another Sister move houses on Tuesday which ate up a lot of our day, but Wednesday we started out strong and that night I met Gustavo the substitute ward mission leader. As we were praying to leave, I felt the spirit so strong testifying to me that this area is a very special area, an area of ​​miracles and that I am here for a great purpose. Then he took us to meet some people and on the way to a house we met an inactive member Regiane, who invited us to go to her house another day and we checked and then we met with two more great families.

We continued to find lots of cool people and contacted some of the people from the area book, and Sister Wright was so excited. She told me "I did not know it was so good to work so hard! I'm so happy with you !! I did not even think of home today !!"  What a cutie. On Friday we woke up on FIRE and we went out and worked a ton. In the afternoon we went to Regiane's house and we got there and we were getting to know each other a little, and I started to talk about the gospel and from nowhere she said, "You know my son isn't baptized and he's going to be ten soon." I almost did not believe it but immediately I said, "We can fix that!" And we marked his baptism for this Sunday. The Lord works in mysterious and wonderful ways;.

Well all that just put gas on the fire and we left there and worked even more. On Saturday a girl Larissa from another ward went out with us. We knocked on doors in the rain and we visited the rest of the people, but we finished our plans at 8 o'clock and asked Larissa for help, and she thought and thought and said, "I don't know, we can try my aunt." On the way there we met with her cousin that she had wanted to pass the reference of previously but didn't remember the address. Then we went to her aunt's house who welcomed us in and invited us back, and when we left Larissa said "Wow, we met my cousin, my aunt let you guys in, and we met so many people, today was amazing !!!" And it was amazing!

I have a wonderful burning feeling that this is an extremely special area, that we're here to do great things because we're here to do the work of the Lord and when we do His work, His way, with love and with determination, WE CANNOT FAIL.

As a grand finale, NICHOLAS WAS BAPTIZED YESTERDAY!!!! WOO HOOO!!!! Parabéns amiginho!!!

Love you guys oodles and oodles and hope your week is half as good as mine's gonna be!!

- Sister Curtis


Monday, January 16, 2017

"The Final Chapters: Parque Bristol"

Welp, another transfer came and went and now I'm going to have one more adventure: I'm going to Parque Bristol! I am very grateful for the time I had here in Jardim da Saúde and for all the difficult and wonderful experiences, I know that I grew a lot here and made some friendships that will last forever.

This week I had one not so fun experience but 2 incredible miracles. The sad part is that our golden investigator disappeared from the face of the earth until 9:05 on Friday night when we finally found her, and she told us that she had gone to help her friend move and she was going to travel the next morning too. While I'm a lil sad that I will not be here to baptize her, I know that Sister Rasera will continue to help her on the path to happiness.
.
The first miracle was that Fanny's mother was baptized this weekend!!! I'm so happy for her and for Fanny and Natasha because now their family has 3 generations baptized in less than a year! Her father passed away in December and now by the end of the year she will be able to baptize him and afterwards be sealed to her parents. How incredible!

The third miracle was that there is a little boy Nicolas from the ward, and his mom is a member but his dad is not and was not letting him be baptized for anything. I've been going there since Sister Newell was here but we started to focus a lot on the father when Sister Rasera arrived, and he ran away from family home evenings but always treated us well and with time went to some meetings and activities and always helped the ward, but it never seemed that he was going to let the baptism happen. Yesterday, Fabi called us over to talk and said her husband said that Nicolas can get baptized and will be baptized this Sunday!!!! I cried when she told us, first of joy and gratitude and then because I won't be able to be there haha (had to be in the week of the transfer). But I'm super super happy for Fabi and Nicolas and their family and know that they are one giant step closer to having an eternal family.

Love y'all lots and hope ya have a great week!!

- Sister Curtis

pics-  a bit of light rain, our neighbors secret pet pig, I'm not trunky but this sign sure is "Soon: Tennessee", teeny tiny bananas

Monday, January 9, 2017

"Que [Semana} Maravilhosa"



"Que [Semana] Maravilhosa"

What a nice week! This week we got to go to the temple!!! Every time we go to the temple it's like we recharge our spiritual batteries to the max and then a little, haha.

Also our wonderful pesquisadora Cristiane came back from the beach and we had another super powerful lesson with her and it was amazing. We asked if she had prayed about the church and about baptism, and she told us that she knows the church is true but didn't know if she is ready for baptism, and I testified to her that I know she is and that this is the path that God wants her to follow and she started crying and told us, "There's something in my heart almost yelling at me 'baptize, baptize, baptize!', but I'm afraid of what my family will think and do. But I think everything that I've passed through in my life has been to lead me to this church."

And I felt the confirmation of the spirit of that so strongly that I promised her fervently that all her life she was being prepared to find The Church of Jesus Christ and that her family will see her example and the light she will have, and they will see that it is a great change for good, something of God and not of men, and that as she keeps the commandments and covenants she will make, her husband will also feel the difference that the gospel makes in their lives and it will open up. And we all cried together and she agreed and it was wonderful! We're trying very hard to help her get baptized this week because I think I'm going to be transferred next week. We're going to work and pray a lot this week !!

Although I will miss the people and experiences that I had here in Jardim da Saúde, I am very very grateful for all of them. Something I learned a lot here was about how much we really don´t know the impact of our work. I've had a lot of sneak peaks in people's lives in areas where I've already left and have had many people I've taught who were baptized after I left the area, or people like Fanny who are teaching everything she learns to her friends and family, and now her mom will be baptized on Saturday. What a miracle!!!! Indeed, we see little of the effect that we have on people's eternal life and so it is even more important that we are a force of good and that we do EVERYTHING to help our brothers and sisters return to the presence of God.

I love this work and I am very excited to have this opportunity to work for the Lord with and for the people I love!

Love y'all lots and have a great week!!

-Sister Curtis

Monday, January 2, 2017

FELIZ ANO NOVO

FELIZ ANO NOVO

IT''S 2017 WWUUUUUUUTTTTT?!?!?! How'd that happen?!?!?!

I've been thinking a lot in retrospect about this year and recently had the opportunity to write a letter for a family friend who has helped me and my family immensely, and I thought that I'd share a little bit of that letter with today.

"Last week made 1 year and 2 months that I'm here in Brazil as a missionary of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. 1 year and 2 months that I've had the pleasure and privilege of being a representative of Jesus Christ and of sharing His restored gospel and all of its accompanying blessings with the people of São Paulo.

Being the end of the year, I was recently reflecting on everything that happened and that I experienced in 2016, and I can tell you without a shadow of a doubt that this was the best year of my life. There is nothing more worthwhile that I could have done, no place more important that I could've been, no people more special that I could've met, or experiences more tremendous that I could've had than what the Lord has blessed me with here.

I have seen miracles take place that defy description as well as scenes that would break your heart to bits and pieces, and I've felt the Lord with me through it all. I know with a surety that the Lord never leaves us to fend for ourselves as we seek him out; he rejoices with us in our triumphs and wipes away our tears when there´s nothing left to do but cry. He is the personal and individual Savior of each and every one of us and loves us with a perfect love. There aren't words sufficient for me to express my gratitude for this sacred opportunity, for everything that I've learned and for everything that I've become and everything I've helped others to become as well."

Love you all lots and hope that you all have a happy new year full of grand goals and perfect plans!

-Sister Curtis