Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Happy Easter! Feliz Páscoa!!!!


This week for sure had a bunch of ups and downs!!! But overall was a really good one!! Today for Pday, we had a churrasco (bbq) with the other missionaries in our zone and played futebol!! had a blast.  But..  Happy Easter! Feliz Páscoa!!!! :)) Our Easter was really good, got a lot of chocolate haha. On Friday though, a big group of people here in Gama got together and made a life size puppet of Judas, the apostle that betrayed Jesus, and hung it up on a post.  They planned on "stoning" it by throwing rocks at it and then lighting it on fire at midnight!  When we heard about this I felt like saying "Him without sin, first cast the stone" hahah :) the words of Jesus.   People were more focused on what Judas did instead of what Christ did for us. I’m so grateful for what Jesus, our Savior did for us. That he not only TAUGHT us what we need to do but also ACTED.  He is the perfect example. For example, this past week we ordered pizza. The place said it would be 40 minutes. It took an hour and 15 minutes. The pizza was 20 reais. I told the pizza guy when he got to our apartment, Look you told me it would take 40 minutes, it took an hour and 15. I’m only gonna give you 10. Its not your fault, but that’s all I’m giving.  
It was really funny and everyone had a good laugh about it that night. I had a good laugh for about 15 minutes but then I felt horrible. Like I just felt so bad.  I thought afterwards "would Jesus have done that?"  Before the mission I probably never would of felt bad, just would of thought it was hilarious and not a big deal.  But I seriously felt really bad.  I then realized that I am a missionary!!, I am representing Jesus Christ and my family everyday.  I shouldn’t have done something like that just to save 10 reais. For all I know that guy had to use his own money to pay back his company, and has a bunch of kids that are hungry or something. That night, he had been happy and started off a great conversation until I became a jerk.  I prayed that night for forgiveness.  The next day we ordered pizza again and I gave the guy like double the money. He was the one being the example to me.
I know we need to try to follow the example of the Savior, even in little things like buying a pizza.  
I am so grateful for what Christ did for all of us. He died for us and all of our sins, but the true miracle in it all is that He lives!! He was resurrected on the third day and He lives! That’s the miracle! I am so grateful that we have a Savior whose love for us is unimaginable. He loves each and every one of us. He didn’t just pay part of our debts, but he paid our debt in full!! Each and every one of us. We need to show appreciation for this "gift" he has given us by living righteously and keeping His commandments. Loving our Heavenly Father and serving others! I know this is how we can have true happiness in our life. I know He lives!!! 
We had a great lesson with Dino this week! We read Helaman 5:12 with him from the Book of Mormon and bore pure testimony! It was awesome!! He ended up going to church on Sunday and loved it!! The dude is a champ. He is seriously a guy who has charity, the pure love of Christ. Which I am still trying to develop.
Abraão was at church to! He is Maria Aparacida´s son who is like 20 yrs old. He is a stud! He told me how much he loves being there and wants to learn more and get baptized! I got to sit with him throughout sacrament meeting and had a lot of great conversations with Him where he really opened up to me. Really spiritual!!! The dude is awesome!!  We marked 3 baptism dates this week, for May 10!! Felipe, Enzo, and Yann. They are all cousins, and related to a member of the church. They all live in the same quadrant. The little sister of one of them was so funny. We were playing soccer with them in the street, and she comes up to me and grabs my arm and says I want to be baptized too!! She’s 6 and such a sweet little girl. I told her how when she’s 8 she can be baptised and how she is so special and that God loves her so much. She’s this awesome sweet little girl!! haha it was awesome. 
There are so many great experiences that happen everyday. I love being a missionary!!! Some days are tough though.  I love getting to share our message with people in the streets and share with them what I know. Some people have nothing but bad things to say about us and what we do. But to me, giving up everything I did to be here, I know what I’m doing is right!!!
I love yall so much!!!! I am so grateful for family and that families are forever!! Literally :) 

Eu te amo!!!

com amor,

Elder Bean

When days seem tough, just remember that you have a Heavenly Father who loves you so much and a Savior, Jesus Christ, walking with you every step of the way!! and carrying you when you need it! And that you have an Elder Bean in Brasil who loves yall so stinkin much!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Vocês são muitos importantes para mim!! Eu sou muito grato por vocês!!! Eu agradeço Deus todo dia que tenho vocês em minha vida!! Familias são Eternas. Isso é glorioso!! Nós temos este conhecimento!!!! Eu sou muito grato por minha conhecimento sobre isso!  É difícil para mim sendo aqui, quando vocês estão lá! Mas.. eu sei, algum dia eu vou ver vocês de novo!!! E vai ser um dia glorioso!! Um Dia eu nunca vou esquecer!!!
Eu sei A Igreja de Jesus Cristo dos Santos dos Últimos Dias realmente é o Reino de Deus na terra!!!!!! Felicidade Verdadeiro!!!! 
Eu amo vocês!!! Mais do que vocês podem imaginar!! Tenho muito saudade de vocês!! Mas, eu estou aqui na missão porque eu amo vocês!! e eu sei estas coisas são verdadeiras!!! Eu quero todo mundo para saber, O que eu sei!!! Eu quero isso!!!!!!!!!!! 


Elder Farias and I at the church setting up for the government visitors

Bom Dia Brasil!!

A random horse just hanging out in a busy part of town

With Elder Machado outside the church building

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Speaking to Government Officials

Bom Dia,

Ehhhh I just got done readin all the emails from yall!! Thanks a ton! Yall sound great :)) Eu tenho muito saudades de vocês!! Serio!! Miss yall a ton!
This week we worked our butts off. Did contacts in the streets like crazy to find more people that would be interested in hearing our message that we bring!!! 
I taught Marcelo this week, an investigator of Elder Sowards and Farias. It was awesome. We taught him about Christ, and the ministry of Christ while he was here on the earth. And that if we have Faith, Repent, are baptised, and endure to the end, we can have eternal life with our Heavenly Father. And that Christ is with us every step of the way. "His yoke is easy, and His burden is light."  The scripture is somewhere in Matthew I believe.  Marcelo is a champ, but his mom isn’t really too happy about him being interested in hearing our messages. But his mom owns a little bakery, so we "softened her up a bit" by buying some stuff and being friendly and showing who we are! 
But the lesson with Marcelo was super spiritual, I just felt like I knew exactly what he needed to hear. He said the prayer at the end. Wow, one of the awesomest prayers I’ve heard an investigator say. Truly from the heart. He just bore his soul to God, and then asked that Heavenly Father would help and bless his mom, that she would have a change of heart if he chose to be baptised. The Spirit was on fire, and after the prayer I just looked at him and had to say it in English, "Dude, your a freakin champ!!!" haha. It was awesome! I then I tried to translate it for him to Portugues. 
On Tuesday this week, we met up at the church with the other 4 missionaries here in Gama to talk with a lady whose calling in the stake, is in charge of public relations. So at the church, every Tuesday and Thursday during the day for the past two months they have been having some government meetings there. The church offered the building for them to use since it is way nice and huge!  So us missionaries have been helping them out by opening and locking the church and doing contacts. Good missionary opportunities. So last Tuesday was the last meeting so we went to grab pictures with the people and the lady from the stake had to speak.  But she asked me if I could speak after her.  I agreed, but not gonna lie I was so stinkin nervous. There were over a hundred people but it was different then speakin in church. These people are government people and some I recognized from seeing on the news. My job was to introduce myself and tell them what we do as missionaries and what is our purpose. Then invite people to our free English class we have and try to sell them on how awesome it is. ha. My heart beating so fast, I didn’t want to mess up cause of Portugues and so I just started praying like crazy. By the time she handed me the mike, there was this perfect sense of peace and I just felt like I was myself talkin english. It was awesome. I said a lot of funny stuff to start off get the people relaxed and it worked. haha. I introduced myself and told everyone I was from Texas, the best state in the US. I then told them about why we choose to come on missions, and what our purpose is while we are here. That we are willing to give up everything that is going on back home in our life, to go to a foreign country to help and serve others.  I bore my testimony to them and explained more about the work we do here. Then told them about the English class that we have, taught by 4 Americans. I promised them, that even though my Portugues was a little rough, I could speak English perfectly. Afterwards, a lady came up saying she had a daughter living in Texas with her family. And that a lot of people said they respect what we do and would come to the English class the next day. It was perfect! It grew my testimony that God does hear our prayers, no matter how simple or extravagant. And that I have really grown a lot in the language and I love public speaking!!! hahaha  We had a huge turnout to our English class the next day by the way :) yahhhh.
Other then that, the week went by really well. Taught and taught a bunch of lessons to a bunch of people. I am so grateful to be here and to be serving the Lord! It's incredible!! The work is true!!
Eu amo vocês demais!!!!!!! sou muito grato por tudo que vocês fazem para mim! Eu agradeço Deus todo dia por vocês. 
I miss yall a ton!!! and hope this week is awesome for yall and Aspen kicks butt in cheer tryouts!!!! yeahhhhhhhh 


Elder Bean

Gotta go :(

I hope yall have a great week!! make it the best one you’ve had!!
I miss yall a ton, but want yall to know that I am working hard and doing my best that I can to serve the Lord to the best of my ability for these two years.

It’s not easy, by far, but it is worth it!! I’ve given up so much by being here. Missing out on all the things that yall do and the memories that come with it. But Heavenly Father knows it’s a sacrifice and I have felt the blessings come into my life from it and have heard that yall are seeing them too, this brings so much joy to me!

I know this church is true!! I cannot deny it! I know with all my heart that the Book of Mormon is the word of God. That through the Book of Mormon, and the Bible, we can look to the example of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. Who not only told us and said what we needed to do to return and live with Him, but SHOWED us how we could!! That is the miracle.
I am so grateful that Heavenly Father is mindful of each and every one of us. That, if we have faith, we can see His hand working miracles in our Life. People say "miracles have ceased in these days".   They have always existed around us, we just have to be willing to see them and have a humble heart. Through our Faith, through our obedience, The Lord will guide us and show us the path that literally leads back to eternal existence with Them and our Families one day!
I love each and every one of you! More than you can imagine! I want others to have this happiness that seems to fill my soul everyday. That I feel like I might burst. I want others to know that God lives!!!! That He literally IS our Father in Heaven!! We need to humble ourselves and be as little children, and hearken until the Shepherd is calling our name. We will all be joined together. For there is one Shepherd. (John 10:16,  3 Nephi 15:21)
I am so grateful for my testimony that I have of this Restored Gospel! I know that it was indeed restored on Earth. That God indeed did call a prophet in Joseph Smith. A young boy, whose faith, opened the windows of Heaven. He had a simple question. He had a simple but humble question, and through his faith, God and our Savior Jesus Christ showed until him the answers that he sought.

I know this Church is true. It is God´s kingdom on the Earth. 
I know these things to be true, for the Spirit testifies to me that they are!!
I say these things. In the name of our Lord, and Savior,  Jesus Christ. 

With the woman from the Stake who's in charge of public relations 
Bom Dia Brasil!!!!!!  Good Morning Brazil!!!!!

Stadium in Asa Sul where they will have World Cup games!!

Outside the apartment, ready to start the day!

Rodrigo, he was baptized a year and a half ago and now he's heading out on a mission!

Machado, Sowards, Rodrigo, Me, Farias

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Conferéncia Geral


I hope all is doin well with yal!! I’m doing greattt. This week was awesome. General Conference was so awesome too. General Conference as a missionary is like the SuperBowl. hahaha. I was so pumped for it! We had to watch all of Sunday´s sessions in Portugues. And then we got to watch the Priesthood session Sunday morning in English. The rest of the sessions on Sunday we watched with Portugues words but subtitles in English. We had to watch the Priesthood session in the morning because it started at 9:00 here on Saturday at night. I’m not gonna lie, it is way better in English, getting to hear their real voices but it was still way awesome!! Blew me out of the water. Priesthood session was on point, wayy good!! I really liked the analogy of one of the talks that we all make sure we charge our cellphones everyday. We need to also take time to spiritually recharge ourselves everyday as well!!  There were so many great talks and I walked away with such a stronger testimony and desire to do better than I have been doing! I am so grateful that we have these opportunities to hear the words of the prophet and other leaders of the church. I could feel the spirit testifyin to me that what they were saying was true, especially during Boyd K. Packer´s talk!
General Conference was definitely the highlight of the week!! None of our investigators were able to go. It was so good and really wished some of them could of been there. The technology we have today is incredible. And at the click of a button we can do marvelous, great things but also do evil things and tear ourselves down. 
Our lessons this week with our investigators were way awesome!! Especially with Dino!! Nossa he is a stud!! After our last lesson, he said he just had this strong feeling of peace and that it all just made sense. That it just makes sense to him.  I have really learned on my mission that the Holy Spirit is the Key that unlocks the hearts. Our words are meaningless and without power when the Spirit isn’t present. But with the Spirit, the heart is unlocked and the words just flow in and make sense!!  I have learned so much too that being here, and serving a mission is more than just helping others find the right path and grow closer to our Savior and Heavenly Father, but also for me!! By serving here, my testimony has been strengthened so much and my footing on the path is more firm. Whenever we are teaching the Gospel and testifying to these people that what we know, we know to be true, even if they choose not to accept it, my testimony was still strengthened. Because while teaching, it gets firmer and firmer into my heart by the Spirit that what I’m doing is right. There are so many things in this world that can make us Happy. But I know that obeying the commandments of God and living his standards will allow us to have True Happiness in our life. The message we take to the world is of Happiness, that we aren’t alone in this test of life! That Jesus Christ isn’t just waiting for us at the end, but literally with us side by side.  To be "yoked" with us. To help us carry our burdens. This life isn’t easy. When we chose to come down here to Earth we knew it wouldn’t be easy! But we knew it would be worth it! To have our families and prove our selves worthy to return to our Heavenly Father and have eternal life with Him and our Families. 
I love yall so much!! I know this work to be true!! 
Tenha uma boa semana!!!! Eu amo vocês muito!!!!!!

Um abraço, tchau tchau,

Elder Bean

It's been raining A LOT

Old Zone

New Zone

General Conference Weekend
Eating at a bakery during the break on Saturday
Watching the Priesthood session in English

The Stake President took these pics, they might
end up in the May Ensign/Liahona