Sunday, November 23, 2014

11/10/14- 11/22/14 November Updates

 MOM Note:  Danny was transferred from his area, Itapeva, and called to be an Assistant to the Mission President in Sao Paulo.  Here are updates from the last few weeks!

Mudancas!!! - Nov. 10, 2014
Well this has been a very different day! It has been pretty strange  being back in the office again but not having to do anything with payments or rent or reimbursements, nothing of that,so that is really nice! So here is the low down: I am actually one of 4 Assistants!! Yeah! Crazy right?? So I had found out I needed to come early and be here today for a meeting with president but I had not been told my area, and neither had any of the others. So we found out that for this transfer President is doing an experiment to help the mission out... none of us will have areas. Yep, that was different news! We will do exchanges every single week. My companion and I (my comp is Elder Farias, one of my good friends here on the mission and one of the most humble elders I have ever met) will be responsible for all of the zones here in the Capital and the other two APs will be responsible for the Interior. So President basically reset the mission, there are TONS of new leaders and he wants to really change the mission culture. So he is having us do an exchange with a set of Zone Leaders each week. We are going to get in their area on Tuesday morning and stay with them until Sunday afternoon! On Sunday afternoon we will come back and have our weekly meeting with President. It will be strange not having an area or investigators,but we will be able to help the elders and their investigators and really get to know them well on these splits.  He said this will be a temporary thing, one transfer, two at the maximum. So yeah! Very very different. He is really excited as he wants us to truly help these elders in ALL aspects of the work and to help elevate and inspire them in all that they do. I am excited, it is going to be interesting and very tiring and hard work, but it will be really good. So yeah! Tomorrow we will have transfers and do all of that,help the new missionaries and train them, then on Wednesday morning i will head off to another area Barueri for hte rest of the week. Also, now it looks like my Preparation Day will be on Monday, not Saturday. So yep, there we go. Last week was really good, we were working really hard to continue what we had been doing. Igor is really firm to get baptized this next weekend and truly understands everything. I had really thought that I would stay another transfer with Elder J Silva and I was happy with that, to me it was going to be fine, but that is ok. I had a good birthday, it was basically a normal day except for the whole traveling thing. Thanks for so many cards Mom and everyone, it was great receiving them all! Well, I love you all, have a great week!

Elder Carney

11/18/14- Jaragua!
Well this last week has been just absolutely crazy, so let´s get started! On Tuesday we went to President´s house to be there to meet the new missionaries, we had a good time and they were a really special group. President commented on that and we all felt that the missionaries who arrived were really prepared, they had a great spirit about them. As president was interviewing them we went and did street contacts with them, it was so awesome! We went to this huge avenue that is in front of where president lives and it was so fun teaching with these elders, several of the Americans did such a great job, haha they were really nervous but did so great! I was grateful to do that with them. Then we went back to the office and Tucuruvi and had the transfer meeting which went really well. A lot of my friends on the mission are now training as they are finishing up their missions, it was fun to see them and we (Elder Farias and I) were able to give a training to the trainers which went really well, the Spirit was really strong and we were all really excited. On Tuesday morning we went to Jaraguá, we were going to go to Barueri but the Zone Leaders are both new in their area so we decided to go to Jaraguá first. It was so incredible! Such a great experience. We were just working so incredibly hard, and the other missionaries in the zone were working like crazy as well. In a week the zone (6 sets of elders) marked 80 baptismal dates!!!! Hahah we were inviting everyone! We were glad to see the elders really encouraging each other and calling each other to share the miracles that were happening. The two zone leaders there are incredible. Elder Marciano is from Rio and Elder Youd is from Missouri, I knew them both beforehand but it was wonderful to work with them. Elder Youd is always happy and excited and Elder Marciano is a great leader, he has a really strong testimony. In one lesson Elder Marciano testified about the First Vision and afterwards the Spirit was so strong. I asked the investigator if he believed all of it to be true and he said "After what he just said I know it is all true." It was so awesome, we were really striving to learn together. I felt like I learned so much working with these elders, it was sad leaving! We also participated in their stake conference which went well. Yesterday evening we had our meeting with President and it went so well, it is incredible how much i learn each time I speak with him, he truly is always teaching, we just have to pay attention. We also were able to have a mini family night with his family, he really wants his children to be involved in the mission and enjoys it when they are able to have missionaries in their home. Now I am in Barueri, I am excited to be here. I am really praying for this zone to get excited and really strive to fulfill their missionary purpose. I love you all, have a fantastic week!!

Elder Carney


Nov. 22, 2014
Haha, well sorry about all of this sporadic emailing that has been going on! It looks like for a good couple of weeks I will now be able to have a little more solid schedule, this is the first time the mission has done this whole us not having an area and traveling all the time thing and so we are kind of guinea pigs. This last week was really good. We arrived in the area called Barueri and one of the first things was Zone Training. It was great, in that zone the two district leaders are Elder Irineu and Elder Mussin, my trainer. They are two of my favorite missionaries in the mission so it was great to see them. Elder Mussin is going home in three weeks so it was a great opportunity to see him again. It was a good meeting and wonderful to feel the Spirit there with all of the missionaries. Hopefully we helped them get more excited and really motivated. Then we started the splits, my first day of splits I ended up... staying inside the house!! One of the Zone Leaders is Elder Mckinley, from Dallas, Oregon, and he was SUPER sick. He had some sort of stomach virus and was just trashed, so I stayed with him all day so that his companion could work with Elder Farias. Haha I kind of was his little caretaker for the day, I cleaned up their house a bit, got him things when he needed it, stuff like that. I wanted to really take the opportunity to serve, so that was nice that I was able to do a litlte something for him. He is a great missionary. Luckily the members took super good care of him and while he was sleeping I was able to do some studying and get some good Ensign/Book of Mormon reading in. The next day I left with Elder Sepúlveda, who is from Santiago, Chile. He is a great elder who is really enthusiastic. We worked hard and were able to find some good new investigators. I love working here in the Capitol, there are always so many people on the streets and it is always an adventure. Living in that house and working in half of Barueri is also Elder Singleton, who was my companion in Itapeva, and Elder Johnson, a good elder from North Carolina. They both are super tall and really white and blond, so everyone here calls them twins. It was really good working with them a little bit as well.
Funny story, we were all walking to lunch and there was this woman who was walking really quickly towards us, I think she may have been homeless and she took our hands and kissed each of our hands as she took it, well she was pretty insistent and really really wanted to shake/kiss our hands. It was weird. Well she was eating a banana. And her mouth was full of banana. So we got banana kisses on our hands. It was gross. I happened to have alcohol wipes on hand since a member had decided to give them to me a short time ago! That was nice. Elder Singleton really didn´t want to get his hand kissed by this interesting woman, so he ran away from her and was dodging her, haha so she threw her banana at him! You know, just another day on the streets of São Paulo!
This week it was good working with the elders. I was really pleading and asking for the Spirit to be with me. We were there to help these elders, but we didn´t really even know them or what they/their zone was needing. So even though I don´t know, I know that Heavenly Father does. I was really praying so that we could be guided to know how we could effectively help these missionaries. I felt the Spirit so much this week. We truly were guided, and we were used to help His children learn more about the Gospel. I love it, I just love teaching, it truly is wonderful! But all of it would be useless if we didn´t have the Spirit with us. I am grateful for the opportunities that I have been receiving to help these brothers and sisters of mine learn about the true gospel. 
Today was good, the members who gave us lunch were great, she served a mission in L.A. working in the temple visitor´s center there. It was cool, haha they did a BBQ and even had BBQ sauce!!! It was delicious. But even better, they invited like 14 non-member friends and two less actives!! It was the best thing ever. So we were talking like crazy with them and all of them were really interested to know why we are here in Brasil, things like that. At the end I was able to give a message and I truly hope they felt the Spirit and accept the missionaries when they visit. All of them took Pass Along Cards and promised to call and accept a Book of Mormon as a present. It was great talking with all of them. 
This month President Farnes is have uma "Mês de Gratidão" so I have been trying to really be aware of the blessings that I have been receiving and be more grateful. I love it, it is great to say thank you! Well, have a wonderful week everyone!! I might not be able to finish emailing tonight so I might be able to get on tomorrow. I found out one of my recent converts here in Tucuruvi is having a hard time right now so I might go visit them to see how they are doing. Love you all!!

Elder Carney    


Monday, October 6, 2014

Tatuí, Sorocaba, Itapeva! 10/6/14 & 9/26/14

This last week has got to be one of the weeks where i spent the least amount of time in my area! It was not super fun, but that happens. On Monday we found out about transfers and already on Tuesday we left early in the morning, passed through Itapetininga (it was fun to see my old area again briefly) and then I spent the day in Tatuí waiting for my new companion to arrive on the van from the capitol. We got into our area at about 10 pm and the next day we worked for an hour or two, ate lunch with a recent convert who also happens to be a saint and wonderful cook, irmã Benedita, and then that afternoon we already had to go to Sorocaba. We worked in the area of some Zone Leaders there (I worked with Elder Carr, he is from my group so that was fun!) and then on Thursday we had Leadership Council. It was really really good, Presidente Farnes is wonderful and he and Sister Farnes taught us so much, I felt very much so edified and that we have the clear directions and tools that we need to help our zone. We returned that day and finally on Friday we were able to have a day of work in our area. It was great, we are talking with literally everyone. Everyone. We have been opening our mouths like madmen and trying to help these people hear the good news of the gospel. On Saturday we had General Conference!!!!!!!1 I loved it. It was seriously so so wonderful, I loved being taught and instructed by the servants of God, His chosen representatives here on the Earth at this time. The talks we incredible. I actually watched in english, I could have watched in Portuguese but it was a nice opportunity to have it in english so I watched it with two of the other elders from our zone. We had it shown at our church building here in our area but the other two areas in our zone have houses that are rented by the church and didn´t show conference so they came here to watch it with us. Elder Godoy gave an absolutely incredible talk and I went adn watched it in Portuguese. His son was my teacher in the MTC, and it was such a great talk, I was glad to hear and be taught by him. I was looking at my notes this morning during my personal study and loved it. President Eyring´s talk on Sunday afternoon was so so great and I loved the talk that President Packer gave about "the old ship Zion." I received yet another powerful personal witness of the truthfulness of the gospel and especially that President Monson is a true prophet of God and that we need to listen to and heed the words we had the honor of hearing this weekend. So many people lived during hte Great Apostasy and other times of apostasy on the earth and did not have the opportunity to be instructed from on high, an today many many people do not know about this opportunity either. We need to remember what an honor it is and acutally apply these counsels in our lives. And then help others to receive this knowledge as welll.
Yesterday during the interval of the sessions we went and were doing tons of contacts and we found this young man and his sister and we had a GREAT lesson with them, it was awesome. They truly felt the Spirit and accepted to be baptized and follow our Savior´s example. We are excited for them,. their names are Rodrigo and Mônica. Also Mom, I got the package you sent me!! THANK YOU! It was awesome and my companion loved trying some of the american food and candy, thank you for that. Also, thank you so so much for the CD´s, we are jamming out to Vocal Point and the new EFY CD as we get ready each morningf now, so thank you! 

Love you all, have a great week!!!
Elder Carney

 9/26/14- Itapeva, chuva, transferências, conferências!
 This last week was just crazy busy! It was insane! But also really good. We were able to go to Sorocaba on Tuesday night (it is a 4 hour bus ride) and we slept there so that we could be there on Wednesday morning for our Multi Zona Conference. It went really well, Elder Albuquerque was going to go to do a bunch of things for the conference but in the end couldn´t so they asked me to do the things for them there and to give a training about referrals and using the church´s referral system... haha except I had never seen the training before so that was interesting! It was Elder Irineu, Elder Mussin, and I doing things there so we kind of felt like we had never been transferred from being secretaries! But it went welll! Mom I remembered that time that you gave me your talk to give in sacrament about the Nauvoo temple because you were sick! But the conference went so well, I felt hte Spirit really strongly and I have been so glad to see the effect it has had on the zone these last couple days in how much faith they are showing and how obedient they are being! President Farnes is truly inspired and I am glad that we were able to be taught by him and Sister Farnes. 

The rest of the week was good, we went on exchanges and Elder Irineu came and did a baptismal interview here for one of our investigators. her name is Cida, she is the sister of a recent convert and she is really great. It turns out that she passed but is really wanting to wait a little more, we felt bummed but also really peaceful about it and she will be baptized here in two weeks. We have been working so hard this week and praying a lot. We had a little miracle in that a recent convert brought her friend to church! I love it when members reach out to people! Speaking of that, on Sunday night we had a branch fireside! it was about missionary work and the branch president had us give a training for the entire fireside! We did pratices with the members, haha they felt a little uncomfortable at first but it was good as they were able to practice and see how it feels to invite someone to come to church, to meet with the missionaries, and to really just open their mouths. It was great and we had some people share really great experiences. These members just have to remember, lmost every single one is a convert to the church. At the end we had someone play the piano and we distributed papers and had every person/family write down three names of people who we can teach and the address/info if they had it with them. It was wonderful. So we ended up getting 42 referrals last night!!!!! We are so psyched! It was a wonderful experience and several members came up to us afterwards asking if we could go on visits with them this week to these people! We are being blessed and we know that as these members show faith they will be blessed ands this branch will grow.

Today we found out about transfers and Elder Singleton got transferred and is going to be comps with Elder Frazier, an elder from my MTC group/district who got to Brasil three weeks ago. My new companion is Elder J. Silva. I am really excited! I have heard he is just the most humble and obedient missionary in the mission and i am psyched! It is going to be good and President called and said we are going to have miracles here, we are really excited. I am also really glad and excited for General COnference, it is going to be so wonderful. I know that God has called  a prophet today and twelve apostles. I know that the heavens are open and we just have to listen what God is telling us. I am so grateful that I will be able to listen to these inspired men and women this weekend. 

Well, love you all, open your mouths!!

Elder Carney

Monday, September 15, 2014

Itapeva! 9/14

9/15/14- This last week has been super full! On Monday night I was able to do a split with Elder Matthews because of some baptismal interviews and that went really well and it was nice to work with my friend for the last time. That Preparation Day we also may have had an ice cream eating challenge between companionships... and yes my competitiveness got to me and yes, we did destroy. Haha it was kind of fun to see which set of missionaries could eat 2 liters of ice cream the fastest... and we destroyed! 6:19. Yep, we felt not so great afterwards but it was fun.

On Tuesday we went to the office for transfers and I met up with my new comp, his name is Elder Singleton and he is from Ohio. He is a tall lanky blonde american, so now there are two tall lanky blond Americans in Itapeva. Haha just about everyone talks to us here to find out about the US, it has been interesting thus far. We left the mission office at about 2:30 PM on Tuesday and got into our area at 10:15 PM that night. It was crazy. We are just super far away from everything out here!! We spent our time waiting in bus terminals and on the bus rides planning for the next day and planning our Zone training that happened on Wednesday and it went really well. There are only two other smaller cities that have missionaries in our zone, but each area is huge and has several cities in the them. We are excited, we really are trying hard to be exactly obedient, we need all the help we can get and we know that as we are obedient we receive the blessings of God. I know that God knows where these people are that are ready for baptism, we need to do our part so He will guide us to them. On Thursday we planned a split with Itararé, the farthest area in our mission and I went there to get to know their area and their needs. It is just tiny there, it cracked me up! But we worked really hard and were able to have some success. I was with Elder Irineu so it was nice to work with him again, he is the District Leader so we were able to work hard and teach each other. 

We have been opening our mouths and talking to seriously just about everyone! Everyone. There are about 90,000 people here in Itapeva and we tried so hard to talk and teach as many people as possible this week. We are teaching well and trying hard. Elder Singleton knows this area really well and is passing along as much information to me as possible so that I can get to know the area quickly. We had a baptism this last weekend, it was really great. A young couple were baptized, their names are Rodrigo and Vanessa and they are so great. It was wonderful getting to know them last week and being able to see the joy that the gospel has brought them. The branch was really helpful and a ton of people showed up to the baptism here. We were really pleased and grateful. They both said they felt so good after the baptism and on Sunday they were happy as well being confirmed.  On Sunday several families here that usually come didn´t come to church for various reasons and there were still 72 people in total at church! This branch could totally be a ward, but it is the biggest in the region so the others are all pretty small!

We invited everyone to come to church this week and on Sunday morning we were everywhere inviting people and passing by the houses of investigators who said they would come with us. It was kind of heartbreaking, not a single one came. We had been praying so so much and everyone fell through. So we came back to teach Gospel Principles class. Now rewind to Friday. We were in a part of the neighborhood we usually don't work a ton in and I saw this little old lady sweeping the sidewalk next to her house, so we did a contact and I felt like I needed to tell her about family history and ask if she new her great grandfather´s name. We told her she could find out through the church and she said to us that that was her great desire in her life, to get to know more about her family. It was incredible. So we told her she just needed to come to church on Sunday to get to know the people there who could help her. So go back to Sunday when no one had come. During Sacrament meeting in walks the same little old lady!!! She walked in and sat next to us and listened and at the end was talking to all the members and we marked a day for her to come to the family history center here and work with some members!! It was a miracle. We were so grateful. Heavenly Father really did help us and touched this little old ladies heart to come and learn more at Christ´s church. It was great. So we did our absolute best and when that wasn´t enough, God blessed us.

It has been good here thus far, we are just throwing ourselves at the work. There is a lot to be done and we are trying our best. The members here are so used to having a branch for so long that a lot of them don´t believe they can have a stake here, we are hoping to help change that feeling and help them really believe and do the things that show their faith. Well, love you all, have a great week!

Elder Carney

 9/8/14-    Well my second week in Ariston went really well. I love this area, and it is just full of hills, haha so many steep crazy hills. And it is covered EVERYWHERE with houses, it blows my mind to see how many people live here. I had a couple moments this week when I could look out on the city and see all the houses and just think about how many people there are here that need to hear the Gospel. 

It was a good week, we worked hard and were trying our best to prepare some great investigators for baptism. One of our investigators, Claudina, is wonderful. Her daughter is serving a mission right now and her other daughter is a less active member of the church. She never really accepted the Gospel and when I got here Elder Gimenez had been teaching her for a while. She has had such a mighty change of heart, it has been incredible to see. She was always really hesitant to get baptized and really nervous and this last week she just had such confidence and peace of mind, the Spirit truly worked in her heart. We are also teaching her sister who lives next door to her (who lives next door to us) and her sister was able to come and see her get baptized. It was such a great baptismal service, it was the day before the year anniversary of their mother´s death. She´s a champ, she is going to be a blessing to her family and I am sure her daughter is going to be happy to find out. She was excited to get confirmed on the anniversary. 

Last week I was able to go on a couple splits, haha I have been able to get to know my area really well because it seems like we always have to go on splits with the other elders here. We went on a split on Saturday with a Young Man in the ward named Kevin, he is great, just really socially awkward and super shy. We went with him and I invited him during a couple lessons to bear his testimony to the investigators and you could tell he was really nervous but he did a great job. I don't know if the investigators will progress or not, but either way it was so good for him. His parents came up to us and thanked us for working with him and on Sunday he bore his testimony about missionary work, it was cool to see. 

This last week was good, we just worked hard and were praying a lot to help this people and achieve the goals we set as a companionship and as a zone. The members here are great, they really help with the missionary work. 

Today I got a phone call from President and I got transferred! I am going to be a Zone Leader in an area called Itapeva. Remember when I was in Itapetininga? Haha well Itapeva is another like two hours away from Itapetininga, even farther away!There is only one other area that is farther away in the mission. So it is going to be very very different from Ariston. I am excited, President told me that he wants to create a Stake there (they are districts that are a part of the mission right now) and so that is our goal in working there. I am excited, it is going to be a challenge but I know that is where I need to be right now. So I will be transferred tomorrow and get there and start working my tail off!

That is about it for this week, just loving the mission as usual. I feel so so blessed to be here, I am eternally grateful to be a missionary.

Love you all!

Elder Carney

9/2/14  Man it feels like so so much has happened since the last time I sent an email to you all. It was a long week, but it just flew by! Haha so the moral of the story of this email is that this area is super great. Just fantastic. Haha I am loving it here. It is kind of just only hills which has been making me feel pretty fit again! Loving that. Last week we were able to work our tails off. On Tuesday my comp had to go to a meeting in São Paulo so I did a split with another elder who is from my group but I don´t know really well, his name is Elder Ihasz. His comp went to the meeting as well and the LZ´s decided we would work together for the day and in my area... which I don´t know at all! Haha it was an adventure! But we rocked it! We just spent the whole day trying to contact old investigators, less actives, and find new investigators. We were so blessed, it was humbling to see how merciful the Lord is. We worked super hard and had a great and successful day. So woo hoo! And Elder Ihasz is great so it was good to get to know him a little better. 
On Wednesday we had a great day and we went to the house of an investigator who had stopped progressing recently and who had already been to church three times and seminary. We went there and I met her and then we called her to repentance... haha we invited her to be baptized and promised her the blessings that she would receive. And she accepted! So that was a miracle! We were really excited for her, her name is Bruna. 

On Thursday we had a Zone Conference with Elder Aidukaitis, who is the 2nd Counselor of the Brazil Area. It was so great. He let us ask him questions and even did some practices with us to show us how to be more effective teachers and better servants of God. It was really uplifting and I felt the Spirit really strongly.

On Friday Bruna was interviewed and then her parents decided at the last minute that they didn´t want her to be baptized, which broke our hearts. So we called some members to go and talk with the parents and they went and the parents changed their minds! So Saturday morning Bruna got baptized and it was such a spiritual baptismal service. We were really happy. On Sunday she unfortunately decided to travel, even after a lot of encouraging and testifying from us and the members, so she is going to get confirmed this Sunday instead. 

After church we had a great lesson with another investigator named Bruno, he had a lot of questions about the Plan of Salvation, and it was such a great lesson, the Spirit was present and it was wonderful to see his understanding. We are teaching like madmen here and trying our best and truly trying to offer our all to the Lord. I love working, haha I am so tired, but so happy! I love it.

Well thanks for everything, today we went to the temple and it was such a great experience, very needed and now I feel re energized and rested spiritually.

Love  you all!

Elder Carney

Saturday, August 30, 2014

Transferência! August 25, 2014

Well this kind of strange writing email just a couple of days after i wrote the last time!! I am enjoying it here already! On Saturday we were able to get everything ready for Rogerio´s baptism, it was really special. Haha there was a slight accident with the baptismal font, but we got everything all cleaned up before the baptism, so that was great, very grateful that Heavenly Father answers the prayers of desperate missionaries.

The baptism went well, I baptized Rogerio and it was special. The heater is broken for the font so the water is super cold. Haha we have asked for it to be fixed but that hasn´t happened yet so it was another cold baptism. Rogerio was kind of worried about it but afterwards he said he didn´t feel any cold and he felt really warm and good as he went into the water. We were really happy for him, they are such a great couple. They set a goal to be sealed a year from now and invited me to it already... haha we will see but that would be awesome!

Also this keyboard is really bad, so sorry ahead of time if there aren´t any spaces for some words!

So on Sunday we went and it was really good. A lot of people came to church which was nice because I was able to say goodbye to them. Church went well, one of my investigators, Gabriel, the brother of Thaís came and is really firm for getting baptized here at the end of the week. Bummer that I won´t be there, but I am glad that he is staying firm and will start on this wonderful path.
I was able to give a talk on Sunday, I found out at the beginning of the meetings because one of the speakers was sick. So i was the last speaker and when I got up there was 35 minutes left in the meeting... haha so I was just a little nervous but it actually went really well, another answer to a desperate missionaries´prayer. I spoke on the Atonement and Missionary Work and spoke on the examples of prophets from the Book of Mormon who repented and changed their lives and then had the desire to share the joy they felt through the gospel with other people. It went well, I felt guided by the Spirit. It also was sweet to talk about, it is so true, when we apply the Atonement in our lives, we naturally have a desire to share that grandest of all blessings with others. I love the mission for that, I get to talk to others all day about how they can be clean from their sins, be forgiven, and be perfected in Christ so that one day they can be with their families forever. It´s wonderful.

Rogerio got confirmed which was also really great, it was such a tender mercy to be able to stay in Tucuruvi for just one more week in order to see that happen.

After church I took pics with a ton of the families from the ward and my investigators and recent converts. It was pretty hard, I will truly miss that ward. It was hard but super great.

Then I got here!! I met my comp, Elder Gimenez, from Argentina, which reminds me a lot of my trainer, ElderMussin. He is a great missionary. We are in Ariston, which is part of the Capitol still. They are tons of people here, it´s crazy. It is in a city Carapicuíba,which has one of the densest populations on the planet, or at least they say that here! There are so many people here,it is so great as a missionary, I just eat it up! We are teaching a lot of people here and I am really excited. The ward here wants to split really soon and the members are all super excited and want to work hard with the missionaries. Also, we live in the same house as two other sets of missionaries, one of them being Elder Matthews! He was one of the APs almost the whole time I was in the office and is one of my best friends on the mission, so that has been fun thus far. Even though I am only going to be here for a short period, I am really going to like it here and I know that I am here for a purpose.

On Thursday we are going to have a mission tour with Elder Aidukaitis (or something like that, haha his name is difficult to spell), he is from the first quorum of the seventy and is the second counselor in the Brasil Area Presidency.We are all really excited, it is going to be really great.

Well,that is about it, love you all and my P-Day next week is going to be on Tuesday because of the temple! Woo hoo, love you all!

Elder Carney

Eu fiquei! Transferência! August 23, 2014

Yet another week full of craziness! Last Saturday we went to the center of São Paulo to this street called 25 de Março which is FULL of shops and things like that and even more full with people. I went with Elder McArthur and the other elders told us some horror stories of people getting mugged and stabbed and stuff like that on this street and that we needed to be careful because we are two tall blond Americans who stick even more out because we are missionaries. But we had both been there before and we were careful and gratefully none of those things happened to us! But I bought some super cheap ties and also got to go to the open Market that is close by and we tried some pretty crazy fruits that they had there! One of the ladies at one the stands started to talk to us and ask questions about what we believe and the entire time we were explaining the gospel to her she just kept shoving samples of cool fruits at us, it was super delicious and we got her address for the missionaries to teach her! So it was a double blessing! Then we got back and cleaned and finished of our Preparation Day with a nap! On Sunday Thaís was confirmed and it was really sweet, she started to cry and a bunch of people got emotional as well, she has a really sweet spirit. Rogeiro also came to church! I don't know if I have already talked about Rogerio (actually yes I have, see the letter from June 7th), but he is one of our investigators. I will talk about him more later in the letter. So then I was just completely convinced that I would be leaving. I had told President that the Church preferred that I train for 6 weeks but that Elder McArthur was ready and I would go wherever he wanted me to go. SO I thought for sure I would leave and I said a couple "goodbyes" to some of the members of the ward and then the next morning I found out that I am actually going to stay for three more weeks!!! Which made me glad and bummed at hte same time, I was looking forwards to getting back to my area full time, but I know that it will be good to finish training well. Well transfers happened and as always were insane, super busy, but they went well and Elder Barton went home (he was my comp who trained me here in the office) and I was able to visit our recent converts with him on his last night in Brazil in our area. 

Elder Albuquerque is training now as well, he is training an elder named Elder Curtis, he is a great missionary and is from Georgia, so for the next three weeks we will be working in trio. Haha it is kind of complicated, I train Elder McArthur during the day but he isn´t my comp, he works with Elder Machado after the office while I work with Elder Albuquerque and now Elder Curtis as my companions. So that´s exciting! And even more exciting is what happened the night of transfers, we went to Rogerio and Julianas house and it was so great, Rogerio told us he was ready to be baptized! We have been inviting him a lot and really encouraging him to take a step of faith. Well he decided he really needed to be baptized and that he came to a realization that he believed everything that we did and it had really touched his heart! Then he bore his testimony to us and it was just powerful, simple, but powerful. It is truly a miracle. He was a espirita, which is a religion here that doesn´t believe in Christ, it is really popular in all of Brazil and is just not so great. Well he didn´t believe in the Bible, and especially not the Book of Mormon and was actually pretty hardened against the church and the missionaries because of experiences that he had had in the past. We started to teach him because he decided to participate in on lessons that we had with Jandira who we were teaching in their house! well he has just taken a 360 turn. He is seriously so so prepared and it is such a tender mercy of Heavenly Father that I stayed here in this area and that I will be able to see his baptism. He is going to be baptized tonight and we are all really excited for him. 

It was a crazy week but also really good! I love you all and have a fantastic week1 Share the gospel with someone (or everyone)!
Elder Carney

 Hey well I just got a call from President... I got transferred!!!!! There is a missionary who is having a lot of problems with his knee and is really struggling, so President is going to have him come to the office just for two more weeks to kind of get a rest and I am going to be with his companion and be in the Ariston ward! Haha so that is kind of crazy! haha but he also said it is only going to be for two weeks and then I am going to be transferred again!!! Crazy! President said I could leave tonight or tomorrow so that way I can see Rogerio´s baptism. Kind of crazy! So it looks like I will be having a P-Day on Monday again! So... talk to you all on Monday!

Love you!

Elder Carney

Cupuaçú! August 16, 2014

Hahahaha that was one of the best stories that I have heard in a while, haha sorry that you had to go through that snake trauma mom!! But it was funny, maybe it happened just so you could make your son serving in São Paulo laugh! Haha here these type of situations are fairly common but with other things, like rats and cockroaches! Luckily we don´t have rats where we live (or at least in the house; São Paulo is full of them) but cockroaches are the bain of my existence. Haha the funny thing is that all of my Brasilian companions that I have had will kill a cockroach by just hitting it with a stick or rod or something and then leave it there... but it´s not dead yet! So then when the don´t listen to me saying we have to hit it harder a couple minutes afterwards it will have left the trash can and be out and running again! Hahaha but it makes for good stories. So thanks for that, hopefully Roxanne will want to enter our house again and hopefully you don´t move because of a snake!

This week was great, it flew by! It seems like time is just speeding up, it´s crazy! There are a lot of missionaries that are good friends of mine that are heading home here soon and it just blows my mind! We had interviews with President Farnes on Monday, that was really good. It was our first interviews with him and it went really well, we basically just talked but we talked about things like humility and confidence and the confidence that the Atonement brings into our lives. It was interesting as it set the tone for some of my studying this week. I was reading about humility in Preach My Gospel and it made me remember a talk that President Uchtdorf had given titled "Pride and the Priesthood." In it one of my favorite quotes goes as follows, "We don´t discover humility by thinking less of ourselves; we discover humility by thinking less about ourselves." Loved that. It is so true, one of the wonderful things about the mission is it gives us so much opportunities to think about other people, to truly become more like Christ. I am grateful for my interview with President, he is truly a great president. Another interesting fact is it looks like I might leave the office this next week!!!! I started my training in the middle of the transfer and usually I have to train for a minimum of 6 weeks but President said he would like me to get out in the field again! He said that he didn´t know for sure yet but if he felt inspired to transfer me he wanted to make sure that Elder McArthur would be fine alone! So the rest of this week was spent really making sure that he knows how to do everything and feels comfortable doing the things that he needs to do in the office! We will see, but perhaps on Tuesday I will be in a new area!!!! I will find out on Monday morning and maybe be able to send you an email really quickly, because if that is the case it means my next Preparation Day won´t be until the following Monday. But we will see, I will go wherever and do whatever! 

This week we had a good lesson with Thaís and her family, we are excited for them, they are really progressing as a family. IT was a fairly normal week in our area, haha yesterday we were doing street contacts on this really busy street in our area and we did this contact with this young woman who just brightened up and got excited when we started to talk to her! We told her we were servants of God and she responded that she already knew that was true!!! Hahah she is a member. Ah well! So we reassured her that she was on the right path and gave her a pass-along card to give to someone. Haha but at least we opened our mouths! I actually really love doing street contacts, it is fun getting to know people and we have had some really great experiences through it. Besides that we also found a great family last night who are really open to the Gospel and are excited to go to church this Sunday! 

Well, I think that is about it! We set a couple baptismal dates this week for the following weeks but it looks like I won´t be able to see them if I get transferred! But that´s ok, it is good to do that and leave the area better than when I found it! Love you all, have a great week!!! Oh and congrats on the baptism in the ward!! It makes me really excited to hear that hte work is progressing in our ward!

Elder Carney 

Falta de Tempo -Aug 9, 2014

As shown by this subject line, this week was just kind of rough because of how little time we had to do everything that needs to be done! But let´s go back to last Sunday:

So we got to church and it turns out that unfortunately some family members had kind of put some not so positive encouragement into Gabriel´s head about his being baptized. So he didn´t come to church and it broke our hearts, but we know that he will get baptized soon.

 Lygia also had an interesting circumstance; so her husband lives in a different city and has some serious struggles with the word of wisdom and is a less active member of the church. She was set to get baptized because they have been separated (they aren´t married) for a long while now (like 8 months) and so she was really excited. Well on the same weekend of her baptism it all came to a breaking point with her husband and it turns out he is having some very real problems with depression, related to his word of wisdom problems, and needs help from Lygia. So she decided that she is going to move back to the other city and help him get over these struggles. Her kids will stay here with her parents in the same house that she has been staying at and she is going to commute back and forth to be with both parties. Which also kind of broke our heart, but they are planning on already setting a marriage date so that she can be baptized as quickly as possible. So I was kind of a bummed out Elder, but I am so thankful for Thais. She was SO excited to be baptized. 

So she came to church and at Sacrament meeting she was bawling because of how happy she was to be there. So then came the baptism and Elder Albuquerque baptized her and I helped him in the font because she can´t stand up on her own. She has MS which makes it hard for her to use her hands really well so I got to plug her nose for her. It was really sweet, she was so so happy to be baptized and the ward really was there and supportive of her. The Spirit that was there was one of the strongest that I have felt in a long time. She is truly a special daughter of God. So after a lot and a lot of prayer she was baptized and it was such a joy to see it happen.

Then started like the most busy week ever! We had an elder go home because he had to start school earlier than normal, well we found out that day after looking a his passport for seemingly no reason that when he had had his visa renewed the Federal Police hadn´t stamped his passport! So it showed that he was illegal in Brasil! Even though he had had it renewed! So we were definitely worried and after obtaining some documents proving he was legal we ended up having to go with him to the airport in the case that they wanted to detain or tax him or something. It ended up going smoothly which was another answer to a lot prayers from some very worried Elders!! It was good to go with him as well, he is one of my friends from the mission and it was just so strange to see him going home! 

Also on Monday we had two of the Analysts from the Church Headquarters of Brasil come and give President and Elder McArthur and I a training since President is new. It was really good, it was a review for me but it was great for Elder McArthur and President to get a solid comprehensive understanding of how finances work for the missions here. They were super nice too and afterwards did an audit of the mission and it went really smoothly. I am grateful that we have so many rules about organization, it makes it easy to have an audit when everything is in it´s right place and ordered!

So then another thing happened that broke our hearts (our hearts were kind of beat up on this week). One of the elders here in the mission had to go home because his mom was killed in a car accident. He is from Santiago, Chile and his dad already passed away years ago and so now he only has his step-dad and his younger brother who has like 10 years. President drove two hours to tell the elder what had happened at like midnight. It was hard, I can´t imagine how that would be. There was only one flight available that day to go back and he didn´t have time to pass by the office before he left so that he could make his flight so we went to the airport again to meet him there and give him his passport and flight info. He barely made it but then we sent him off and came back with his companion to get them all set off for the emergency transfer. We fasted as a mission for him and his family, he s going back for the funeral and to make sure his little brother is cared for and then he coming back in two weeks. We are all praying a lot for him right now.

Between all the craziness this week we have had barely any time at all in our area and it makes me worried for my investigators, I have been praying a lot that the Lord will bless them while we can´t be there to teach them. I have found that the Lord has blessed us so much, that when we cannot be there, the Spirit teaches them so much and often softens their hearts. I am really praying for them so that they can continue to progress towards baptism.

Well it was kind of a crazy week, I am glad that the Lord blesses us so much. He truly loves His children and blesses his missionaries. I feel those blessings all the time and am grateful for God´s tender mercies.

Love you all, have a great week!

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Gratidão 8/2/14

Yet another great week here in Tucuruvi! Time is just flying by!! I seriously cannot believe that I have already been here in the office for four transfers, it is the same amount of time that I had in Brazil when I got called to work here! It just blows my mind! Well this week was definitely interesting, we had an American who got his visa come on Tuesday and with that came a whole bunch of changes! One of them was Elder Matthews got transferred from the office, he was on the Assistants and has been here since last December and is going home in November so he was really excited to get back to his area full time. It was a bummer for me because he has become one of my best friends here on the mission but it´s all good, he is going to BYU after his mission so I will see him again in the future. Then another crazy thing happened with the transfer... I am training the new financial secretary!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Haha so my life changed, now it means that here in six weeks I will be out in the field again! And done with any form of payments/reimbursements/rent/who knows what else that I do here int he office!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Haha but that brings me to my subject line. I am so so grateful to have worked here in this area and in this calling. i truly need to be grateful for all that the Lord has blessed me with and how much of a blessing this area and the office has been for me. So yeah. But I am training Elder McArthur from Star Valley, WY to be the new finance guy and it will be awesome, he learns really quickly and now I am just getting to shown him how to do everything and then let him go at it! So it´s been good thus far. This week we had to travel a bunch to do payments and get documents signed for the Church, so it was a little tiring but really good. I almost say Elder Mason Davis too!!!! They went to the Federal Police on Thursday and we went on Wednesday, which would have been super fun but that´s ok! Then today we got permission to go to the Zoo here in São Paulo which was way fun, President Farnes and his family decided to come and join us, so it was a fun day there with them. It was great fun and good talking to his family. 

Now for the best parts of the week, I am just amazed at the faith that some of our investigators have. Lygia is doing great, she is truly wanting to be baptized. this week we were talking to Thaís about her baptism and Lygia told us that she was wanting to get baptized this weekend too! It was great, she also understands really well the principles of the gospel, it has been awhile since I have had an investigator who has such a good grasp on the gospel. Her family is awesome and they were interviewed this week and Lygia, Thaís and Gabriel are going to be baptized tomorrow after Church. We are really excited for them and the ward is as well. We are having troubles finding new investigators and are really trying to find new ones, we cant teach anyone until we find them, so we are striving really hard to open our mouths and talk to all of the people that are on the streets. We also have been blessed with some super solid member referrals, it´s been hard to get referrals here in Tucuruvi but when we get them the people are really solid investigators/ soon to be members. I am amazed at how the Lord truly blesses His servants, so many times it feels like we are just guided to these people who are so perfectly prepared to receive the gospel. 

This morning during personal study I was reading in the book of Ether in the Book of Mormon and I was reading in the 7th chapter and it talks about the wickedness of some of the rulers of the people and at the end about a king named Shule who ruled in righteousness. It ends with this verse:  
27 And there were no more wars in the days of Shule; and he remembered the great things that the Lord had done for his fathers in bringing them across the great deep into the promised land; wherefore he did execute judgment in righteousness all his days.

I loved it. I had a though about the fact that he had remembered all the blessings that the Lord had given to him and his fathers and people. I thought about how when we remember all the blessings that we have been given by God, we are more humble and grateful and with that we are more obedient and righteous. So I was reminded once again about the importance of gratitude in our lives. I need to be so grateful for this Gospel and all the blessings that come with it. The Lord has blessed me so much in my life, He truly does take care of us. I am humbled and amazed at how merciful He is to us as His children. 

Well, super psyched for another week, just gotta love the mission! Have a good one family!

Elder Carney

Updates from July!

7/12/14- His new Mission President, Pres. Farnes & the office staff

This week just flew by, it was so crazy!!!! Last week at church was one of the best days that I have had on my mission. First of all it was Fast Sunday, something that i just love. Seriously fasting is great, it really helps us out. So we were fasting as a mission that every missionary companionship will be able to baptize at least 2 people this month of July. IT was great to be united as a mission and really exercise our faith. Here because lunch is the biggest meal we start on Saturday after we eat lunch and fast until lunch on Sunday, it is a little different but now I am used to it. So we had that and it was great to really re focus on the Lord and have a good opportunity to really think and ponder on my reliance that I have on him. So then on Sunday Jorge got confirmed which was wonderful to see, the Bishop confirmed him and it just made us really happy. Also, Givaldo got ordained to the Aaronic Priesthood!!!!!!! He is now a Priest, and after church it was an honor to be able to be a part of the ordination. It was so great, one of the best moments of my mission, he truly has progressed so much. He even got up and bore his testimony during sacrament meeting. It was really special, you don't know him so you don't know how shy he is. He is super shy. So he got up, and he had invited his family (our other investigators Nabil and Nilza and their son) to church and he bore one of the most simple and powerful testimonies that I have ever heard. It really touched my heart. It was great. 

So that was just a great Sunday, we had investigators at church who also really really benefited from seeing the progress of our recent converts. Then this week has just been insanity because of transfers!! President Farnes decided he wanted to completely change up transfers so we moved the location, times, days, now there is a meeting with everyone who is going to be transferred and he does the whole little thing where each new missionary finds out one at a time who will train them, stuff like that. haha well for us in the office it kind of meant insanity because we had to figure out how it would all work out smoothly and go together, but after a lot of prayer it worked out!!! It happened on Tuesday and it was really good! Also it was a huge transfer, so many people got mixed up and transferred, it was crazy!! Also some of my good friends here on the mission were called as Zone Leaders or to train, something that was great to see because they are truly awesome missionaries and they are going to have a lot of opportunity now to help other missionaries. One of them, Elder Andersen who went to Montana with me, even is my Zone Leader now, I am really excited!  

Also now we have 8 people on the office staff! Elder Lima is training the new housing secretary so he can leave in August, then Elder McArthur, an elder who is a good friend of mine and is from Star valley, got called as the health secretary because he has a lot of experience and background working in hospitals and Sister Farnes doesn't know as of yet the medications and things that are different her In Brasil. So it is crazy, there are 8 missionaries living in our house now, haha it has been really fun! Also I might train this next transfer so I can leave and get back to being in my area... haha that would be really great!! I love it here but this is already my fourth transfer in the office, can you believe it!!?? It has flown by but it will already be like 6 months! 

This week we had a lot of tender mercies happen, one of them being with Breno and Guilherme, the sons of Emanoel and Reuza. Emanoel and Reuza need to get married but their sons are completely ready to get baptized, well because of how crazy it has been these last two weeks we have had a really hard time following up with their family. Seriously I had been really stressing out and praying a TON for them because we just were not able to be with them as much as we should have been able to. So I was truly trusting in the Lord and that the Spirit would work with them because we couldn´t. So we marked a baptismal interview for them last night and we got there and they both passed!!!! Then it got really tense. We asked what time they would want to be baptized on Saturday or Sunday and Reuza like cringed and said it was really really fast. Basically they are so awesome but they don't like change really quickly. So we had this discussion that was really crazy intense and spiritual, Emanoel said he would like to be an example to them and be baptized first and then be able to baptize them. Well I was just praying so hard to be guided and then out of nowhere Emanoel said that earlier that day he had been reading in Mark in the Bible about Christ´s baptism and he said that he had had a really strong thought and feeling that he shouldn´t impede his sons from being baptized and being obedient. 

It was so awesome!!! he said he wanted to baptize them but because he couldn't right now he should let them really follow our Savior. It was great, really a powerful experience. So they decided they are going to get baptized Sunday morning before church!!! It was great. We were really relieved and so so grateful, it was truly a tender mercy and miracle to see the change of heart that they had. So woo hoo!!! 

Well, that is about it, haha have a great week everyone!!
Elder Carney
7/19/14- Estrangeiros!!!!
Holy cow this week was just crazy!! Haha I kind of feel like every email is sounding like that, but it is kind of that exactly! My life has just been kind of this crazy blur since we had the transition to President Farnes, haha it just seems like there is so much to do and the list just never ends! But that is ok, I am learning a lot and growing a lot as well! So that´s good.

This last weekend was great, Brasil lost miserably again, which was sad, but then Breno and Guilherme got baptized!!! Which was awesome! They got baptized on Sunday morning because the Brasil game was Saturday night and the streets had the potential to not be very safe. The other elders had a baptism too and it was great, the whole ward showed up early and really helped support. It was a great baptismal service! Nabil came, he has really progressed so far and is going to be baptized soon, we are praying a lot for him. I feel so blessed in that I have been able to teach so many people on my mission from so many different places!! In Montana I was able to teach Beibei from China, then some wonderful Montana-ites! Here in Brasil I have met and taught people from all over Brasil, and Nabil who is from Lebanon. It is just really cool in how it has helped me realize the basic need that every child of God needs the restored gospel in their lives, no matter what background or belief they had while growing up. It has been very cool to see these people change their lives. Then we worked hard during the World Cup Final which was one of the least productive days I have had on my mission. Haha but we were working and praying so hard and were able to find people to teach and find this amazing family that just moved into our ward boundaries!! We were really trying to exercise our faith, most people were having parties and watching the game but we were praying hard to find someone and hte Lord truly did bless us in being able to visit some of our investigators and find new ones. This new family is great, her name is Lijia, she moved back to live with her parents who live in our area with her five kids! They were living in another city in another mission but were being taught by the missionaries and just love the church, she unfortunately cant be baptized right now because she isn´t married and her husband is living hte other city for now, but her kids are seriously great and the three teenagers all have strong desires the follow Christ and love the church. It has been cool to see, Lijia has a testimony that is really strong, she helps us teach her parents who are really strong catholics but very kind and accepting of learning about what their daughter now believes in. Later this week we had a great lesson with them and marked baptismal dates with them, so we are excited! 
On Friday we went to the Policia Federal to register President Farnes and his whole family, as well as another sister missionary. It was cool being there with them, I always love going there and doing contacts with people from so many different countries! Yesterday I talked to these three Chinese people, a married couple and their coworker, I got their address and talked to them in english (they don't speak Portuguese and I definitely don't speak Mandarin) and taught them about what we believe and know to be true. It was great, they live close to the temple here and so I am excited to pass on their address! Yesterday we woke up early to get their on time and then we had to run back here to the office to make copies of their registration documents and then we had to get back on the subway to go to the church offices and get new cell phones and give the travel department the registration documents, then we had to go to President´s house to work on the transfer board, then finally we got back in our area at like 8 pm. I am a tired missionary today. Haha it was crazy, a very busy day, but at the end we were able to have a great family night with our investigator Rogerio, who is the husband of Juliana, a member of the ward. It was really great, he is progressing a lot and even bore his testimony this week to our recent convert about the Book of Mormon. It is great to see the changes happening in him because of the Spirit and the Book of Mormon. 

Today we were sitting here and I started my email and a knock on the door of the office surprised us and there was a member and this girl who started speaking english with this heavy accent! It turns out the member was waiting in the front of the church (which is next door to the office) and this girl started talking to him in english and motioned to the church so he brought her to talk to us! Her name is Emma and she is from Zurich, Switzerland, and she wanted to know if she could pray in the church! Haha so I gave her a tour of the church and it was super great, very spiritual, she is here visiting for just a short time and I taught her about baptism while I showed her the font and she loved the feeling she had in the chapel. I taught her about baptism and how she can be clean from her sins and be renewed, and she got excited and said that that is what she has been looking for in her life!! So then she asked if she can be baptized... AHHH!!! Haha it was crazy, but I explained to her that we can teach her and help her prepare to be baptized and then the missionaries there in Zurich can finish and baptize her, it was really cool. So we got her phone number and she gave us her home address, and tonight she is going to come to the activity and then to church tomorrow! It was really cool, there is a sister (the RS President) who speaks english and actually told me this week she really wanted to practice and get better and so she is going to translate for her! So we are excited, it truly was wonderful to see and a sweet experience. Also it has been weird teaching this week in English so many times between the Policia Federal and today! But anyways, God truly does have a plan for every one of his children.

Have a great week everyone!!!

Elder Carney
Here are some pictures from the baptism of Breno and Guilherme! Does Breno (the younger and lighter colored hair one remind you of anyone????? Haha if you knew him personally you would all think he is the mini version of Bradley!!!! Seriously though. I found the brasilian bradley. They are basically the same in personality and I think he looks like booboo did when he was younger! But it´s great, because now Bradley is a member of the church and his mini me is too!!!!! Love you all!

7/26/14 - Mom Note**  This week Jeff's brother passed away very unexpectedly.  Jeff sent Danny the email letting him know what had happened.***
 I don't really know what to start off with, it was rough to hear about Uncle Mike passing away, but it makes me so so grateful to have hte knowledge that we have about the Gospel of Jesus Christ and the resurrection. I am so glad that we have the opportunity to be sealed to our families forever, and that truly is a blessing to know, especially when loved ones pass away. I have seen people here in Brasil who pass through similar trials and do not have the same peace in their hearts. Some people believe that after this life it all ends. But I am eternally grateful to my loving Heavenly Father that has given me this knowledge and testimony that families are meant to be together forever.

This week was really good, I had told you about that Swiss girl named Emma who came and asked to have a tour of the church. So we did that and then that night she ended up coming to our ward activity and she loved it. My Mission President and his family decided to come on a whim and it was a little miracle because Sister Farnes and her kids don´t speak Portuguese and so were able to talk to her in english, it was really cool. Then the next day she came to church and stayed for all of the meetings. Afterwards several people invited her to lunch and she ended up eating at the same house as we did and we taught her another lesson. We also were able to give her a Book of Mormon in german, her native language, and she is reading it. When we taught about the Restoration, she told us that she just couldn´t believe that a 14 year old boy saw God the Father and Jesus Christ, but that she just had to believe because she had been guided there to that exact moment to hear these things. It is cool to see the faith that she has, she accepted baptism and really wants to be a missionary. Haha and the members have really helped her, shown her around São Paulo and invited her to do things with their families almost every day, she even met up with randomly the Mission President from São Paulo East and his wife and talked to them in english as well, haha she has been pretty blessed in having so many opportunities to learn about the gospel in her little visit to Brasil. So that has been really cool this week teaching her, she will probably go to Rio this next monday and we have her address to send to the missionaries there in Switzerland. 

This week we were able to teach Lygia (found out the real spelling this week) and her family a couple times, her daughter Thaís, is 14 years old and uses a wheel chair. She is super great, really excited to get baptized and she just lights up when we talk about it and when she can go to church. One of the members here who has a car helps her get there. Also her older brother, Gabriel, is great. When we invited him to be baptized he was a little hesitant so we gave him the Book of Mormon and promised him that if he would just read it and pray about it he would know that he needed to be baptized in this church. So we returned and visited with him and he said he had read and felt so different while reading, that he knew it was a true book and that this was the true church, and that he wanted to be baptized. It was humbling and exciting to see such faith. It was cool, so we are psyched to see this family work towards being an eternal family! 

This week the rest of the office went to this park here in São Paulo that has this exhibit about the Mayans, but last week with setting up for the ward party and next week we are planning on going to the Zoo here in são paulo, so I decided I was going to stay here with another one of the Elders and rest up a bit. I am so grateful to be here, it is truly the best. I am so glad that I know the Christ lives. He is my Savior. I love Him for all that He did for me. I know that our family is an eternal family. I know that the sealing power of the temple is real. I am so honored and humbled to serve my God during these two years. I am keeping you all in my prayers, I know that God does provide for us when we obey the commandments. Love you all!!!
Elder Carney

Saturday, July 5, 2014

Que Loco! Sou velho! 7/5/14

Man, this week was just absolute insanity! Haha it seemed like SO much was happening! Last Saturday we had a good rest of our preparation day and then we just had to stay inside because it was a Brasil game day so we just stayed in and cleaned and studied and relaxed. So that was good, then on Sunday Jorge got baptized after church!! We were really excited for him, he has really progressed and has a lot of faith. It was fun to see him there and with his family. A member of our ward baptized him and that went really well, it is always better when a member baptizes! 
On Sunday we were able to work well and it was good to be able to work hard on the anniversary **(MOM NOTE: That day was the anniversary of a very good friend of his, Morgan, who had died 7 years ago.)**   I felt a lot of extra motivation to really fulfill my missionary purpose and find people to teach and invite to come unto Christ. So that was good, we had a really good lesson with Emanuel and Reuza and their two kids, Breno and Guilherme. Unfortunately they aren´t really planning on getting married right now, they want to but she wants to wait for her mom to come from North east Brasil to be here for it. Unfortunately that probably wont be for a long while so we are praying that she has a change of heart and really understands better through the Spirit that the law of chastity is a sacred and important commandment from God. BUT, we invited Breno and Guilherme to be baptized and they accepted, saying they needed to think and pray about it. We are excited for them, they have already been coming to church so long and are really prepared to be baptized! It was great to work hard and help other people on Sunday.
On Monday started some of the craziness of this week. It kind of seems like we haven´t had much opportunity at all to work in our area which is always a super bummer. We had a ton of stuff to do in the office this week because of some of the changes that have been happening with President Farnes and his arrival. Haha I am a very tired missionary, but also really happy! He liberated music that is uplifting on every day of the week and we are also able to do activities and service, so we are excited to do that! Unfortunately I wont be doing a lot of service right now because of our already limited time in the area, but one day I will! On Tuesday we had a multi zone conference here in the Capitol to get to know his family and it was so awesome! They all spoke and we had a fantastic time getting to know their family. One thing that stood out to me was how much they use scriptures as a family, you can clearly perceive that they have centered their lives on that and the Gospel, I really saw a lot of things that I want to have for my own family one day. I was really impressed with their 9 year old son, Jordan, who gave a fantastic little talk about attitude and how everything depends on who´s hands it is in, like a baseball in his hands is worth 9 dollars, but in a professionals hands it is worth millions of dollars, or how nails in his hands are worth a couple cents, and nails in Christ´s hands are worth the salvation of every man and woman to every walk on this earth. It was really great, I learned a lot and really enjoyed it. President Farnes is dynamic, he has a lot of energy and love, it is going to be so great for our mission right now! We made a goal to find 5 new investigators every day. I know that we can do it, it has been a bit difficult this week because of how much we have had to work and how little time we have had in our area, but I know that it is possible and I am for sure going to do my part and my best! 
On Thursday we went to the Federal Police and got some missionaries registered and the MTC was there, and I actually ran into two missionaries that I knew in the MTC in Provo a year ago!! It was crazy, they got their visas and I happened to run into them before they went to their missions in other parts of Brasil, it was fun! Then we went to President´s house with the Assistants to give him and Sister Farnes training on a whole bunch of things about the mission and the office and payments, lots of things. But they invited us before hand to have lunch there and it was really great, super awesome to get to know them better! 
Then yesterday was the 4th of July, but here they only thought about the World Cup and how Brasil won! Haha but I remembered and just pretended that the fireworks were in celebration of independence and liberty! 
Today we got permission to go the Football Museum that they have here in São Paulo, it was super cool to see!! I will send some pics, it was really fun!

It has just blown my mind that I have already been out for a year! I just can´t believe it! It is definitely bittersweet, I actually really liked being "young" on the mission, now I am an old missionary! But I am very grateful that I will be able to continue to serve my Master and Savior for another beautiful and full year! I love it here! I didn't get a package or anything, but that video was super super awesome!! Thanks so much for everyone who did that, I really appreciated it!! It was cool to see everyone´s faces and where all of you are! Well, love you, have a fantastic week! Please keep my investigators in your prayers!