Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Falta de uma ideia boa para o título 1/24/15


The first is at the temple, the second with three missionaries who have been my comps before (Elder Farias, Albuquerque, and J Silva) and the other one is the sky outside the office this week!

What a wonderful, busy week that we had here! I am loving working as a missionary like always! Last weekend we were able to see Luis Felipe get baptized! He was pretty excited, haha although not too excited to wear a jumpsuit, haha he wanted to wear his swimsuit instead. It was a great meeting, right beforehand during Sacrament meeting his older brother, André, got confirmed a member of the church. It went really well, another recent convert who is preparing to go on a mission was able to baptize. Luis Felipe´s mom was really happy to see her son make a good decision. 
I also gave a talk during Sacrament meeting, it went well, I had been asked to speak on the Scriptures, and I was able to use the story of Elizabeth Scarborough in my talk. I used her as an example of how the scriptures can help us change our lives and give us the fire and motivation that we need to follow the Lord through everything. A lot of people asked me afterwards a little bit more about her life, so thanks Dad for letting me know more about her! 
In regards to family history two of our other investigators were really interested in that and so I got on and showed them how they could look for their family members on familysearch.org They really really enjoyed that and are eager to find their dead relatives to add them to their family tree. 
Cleide (André and Luis Felipe´s mom) has been such a trooper this week! She is stopping smoking and she has stopped!!! It is hard because where she lives everyone smokes, so she is constantly smelling smoke and being offered cigarretes. She really wants to stop and when she feels tempted we asked her to pray or read the Book of Mormon and sometimes she calls us just to get a little more strength. She also was really crazily loaded up with work this week, which was a huge blessing because she has been so busy working that she hasn´t even had a lot of time to think about it! We are really happy and are looking forwards to baptizing her! 
On tuesday we had the chance to go to the temple which was fantastic as always, I woke up at 5 am to go early with some of the secretaries to try to do some baptisms with them beforehand but it was closed so we ended up serving in other parts of the temple folding clothes, it was great to serve. I love the peace that is there, it is so wonderful to really feel my Heavenly Father´s love and guidance in that sacred place. If you want to learn more about what a temple is go to: www.lds.org/church/temples?lang=eng

We have been crazy busy this week in the office and unfortunately that has meant less time in the area, but we are trying to be effective with the time that we are given to work and help our brothers and sisters. On Friday we had a Zone Conference in Sorocaba with three of the zones there. This whole week we had been preparing different projects that President had asked of us. I had prepared a graph and information that the church gives to President every month about how our mission effectiveness is with the help of Elder Ashford. It shows on average how many new investigators, investigators at church, and baptismal dates marked that we need for every one baptism. Well we did that but for every zone using the last six months. It was really interesting to see and hopefully will help them in making goals, soon we are going to be able to give it to them using the information from the last six weeks so that it applies to them more. The Zone Conference went really well, i am always amazed at how incredible President Farnes is, he truly inspires us to be better as he talks to us and there is always such a great spirit felt when he speaking with us. He really involves the missionaries. Haha also he had a surprise for us at the end, he had gotten the Meet the Mormons movie in Portuguese from the Missionary Department. it isn´t available in Brasil yet so it was so awesome being able to watch it. We loved it, the Spirit was incredible!!

Well that was our week!! We also have been having a mouse problem, they come in from our neighbors yard and have been enjoying our house. Well this week we killed three, haha it has made for some adrenaline experiences. Have a great week everyone!!
Remember to open your mouths!

Elder Carney 

Metas 1/10, Ariston! 1/17,

Ariston! 1/17/15
This week was just great, as always! Last Saturday we visited a ton of people and were almost running to get to see everyone because we had less time as it was our Preparation Day. Come Sunday we got a lot of help from some members and we were going and getting people to come to church with us. We ended up having 8 people at church, we were really happy as some people who didn´t seem very likely to come ended up coming and really enjoying it! I am really grateful, Heavenly Father has really been blessing us, as He always does. On Sunday Josefina got confirmed a member of The Church and it was great to see how happy she was. Afterwards we had a baptismal service and André got baptized! He has a lot of faith and is a really good young man, he is really responsible and would like to serve a mission. Another recent convert young man of the other elders baptized him, it was a wonderful experience for the both of them. 
This week we have been helping andre´s mom get ready for baptism, she is stopping smoking so we have really been trying to help her with that. She really wants to stop. Her other son, Luis Felipe, is going to be baptized tomorrow; we are excited about that. This week we had a good meeting with President and he told us that he wanted us to go on a split for a couple days with the elders who work in... ARISTON!! Haha it was pretty exciting news. I just love that area. So on Wednesday morning we arrived there and I was able to work with some pretty great elders and realyl work to help them do their best and be more eficient in everything. The ward there is incredible, truly whoever is baptized and is investigating recieves so much help and support from everyone. I was also able to see Bruno, one of my recent converts from there. He is super strong, he is a ward missionary and is also teaching in the Elder´s Quorum. He is preparing to go on his mission in October of this year, it was really great seeing him and seeing how much he has progressed in the gospel. He is only 20 but has a fire to help others learn about the things he has learned. I also found out that another convert of mine, Claudina, is really solid, but unfortunately I was unable to see her, but that´s ok! We worked really really hard for two days and I was able to work with one set of missionaries and then the following day I worked with another elder. On our first day we were going up this hill and one of the elders did a contact with a younger man who was walking with his son. We ended up getting his address and later that same day it started to pour and then hail on us. We noticed that we were right next to the street where that man lived and we ran there to see if he was home. He let us in out of the hail and we ended up teaching him and marking baptismal dates with him and his brother. His name is Daniel and he has a really deep questions about life and his purpose, he loved hearing about the Restoration and readily recieved what we taught. 
It was great working in Ariston and seeing the ward again, I just loved it there. We worked really hard and we got back yesterday mornign and yesterday worked really hard in our area before doing another split with the elders who share the ward with us so that we could both do baptismal interviews. It has been a really good week. I just love this work, it is so wonderful to be a part of it! Have a great week everyone, open your mouths, and thanks for all of the prayers!

Elder Carney

This is the picture I took with my recent convret from Ariston, Bruno!

Here is the picture of Josefina on the day of her baptism!! Our ward mission leader, Laurení baptized her!!

Metas! 1/10/15
This week just flew on by, as usual it was very busy and very wonderful! We had a great day at church last week, Josefina and Rosangela came to church again and loved it! After the church meetings we were blessed to see Josefina enter into the waters of baptism. She looked really happy, I will send some pictures later. Her daughter was glad to watch, she is still struggling with feelings of indecision and doubt, but wants to be baptized so it was good for her to watch her mom´s baptism. I was so so grateful for Irmã Edite, who is the Relief Society President who had given the referral and helped in the entire process. Josefina is going to be confirmed at church tomorrow.   Also we met this great family last week, Cleide, André, and Luis Felipe. Haha we actually met them because Luis Felipe was flying a kite with his friend on the street. Here it is super popular and all the young boys and young men do it. They get these kites SUPER hi up in the air and get into kite battles, they cut the strings of the other people´s kites with their own kite strings, it gets pretty intense! Well Luis Felipe was flying his kite and we stopped and starting talking to them about kites and how they are able to get them so hi so quickly, I think they liked the fact that two non Paulistas wearing funny clothes starting talking to them and took interest in what they were doing. We went and visited their fmaily nad it turns out that Cleide frequently went to church in Tucuruvi when she was a young girl but stopped going and never was baptized. This family is really great, we went and got them and they came to church on Sunday morning and really enjoyed it. This week we have been really working with them and André, who is 17, is going to be baptized tomorrow after the church meetings. He is a really responsible young man and works at the mall here in Tucuruvi. Cleide and her other son also are really liking the church and want to be baptized as well. André read the part in the Book of Mormon that we gave to him and afterwards prayed and said that he simply knows now that it is true, that he received his answer from God and that beacuse of that he needs to follow. He has a lot of faith. 
This week we also were able to go on some visits with an older lady who was baptized 2 years ago and has rarely missed a church meeting since. Her name is Laurita nad she lives in a more humble area and ALWAYS invites her neighbors to come to church with her. She went around and introduced us to everyone, it was great, we were able to meet a lot of great families and some people that really are needing some help right now. 
This week we also did a split with the zone leaders from Jaraguá. I went and worked with Elder Díaz, who is from Uruguay, it was great working with him and really trying to help his area. We had an interesting experience, it started to pour rain, literally it felt like the world was flooding! We were looking for this one apartment building address, we were stopped in front of a certain building trying to stay out of the rain. We decided to go looking and we found an unmarked building and thought it might be the right number. We knocked on the right door number and this lady welcomed us in ad we ended up teachign her and her family nad marking baptismal dates with all of them! They are a great family that is here in São Paulo and recently moved from a different state. Well it was great teaching them but it turned out to be the wrong building number and not hte family we were looking for. We went back with their directions adn that same building we had been standing in front of at the beginning was the right one! Haha so it was a little blessing that we didn´t see that from the beginning, if not we wouldn´t have found that wonderful family!
We are just working our tails off! Haha we are working a bunch in the office and really following up with the missionaries to see how their zones are doing and how we can improve as a mission. President Farnes felt inspired to help us make a goal as a mission and presented this goal to the leaders at the leadership council this last week. The goal was to mark 1000 baptismal dates this first week of the year 2015. This meant 10 dates for missionary companionship. We discussed it as a mission and everyone felt that it was possible even though in the past the record was a little more than 600. So we all promised to do everything possible to help every set of misisonaries mark 10 dates this week. It has been incredible to see the miracles that have been happening in these areas. I have been truly amazed as the mission has been working so hard to make this goal. The mission doesn´t know this yet but yesterday we broke the 1000 mark! As of yesterday we have set 1076 baptismal dates and we still are going to continue working today and tomorrow. It has truly been miraculous! We are really striving to help the missionaries follow up very well with these people and help these families and individuals work towards been baptized and then sealed as a family. I just love this work, we have truly been blessed this week as we made goals together and then went the extra mile and really prayed sincerely for help to make these goals. So woohoo, we are really excited right now as a mission! 

Love you all, have a fantastic week and remember to open your mouths!

Elder Carney

Thursday, January 8, 2015

Natal! Dec. 27 & Jan 3 PICTURES

Felipe's Baptism

Here are some pictures!! The first one is the sample photo they sent us, well right in the front middle is Elder Ashford and they got him with his eyes super closed. Well Elder McArthur got creative and using Paint he added eyes to Elder Ashford which you will see in the second photo. THose eyes look familiar??? They are mine! And my glasses, and my left ear! It turned out pretty good didn´t it? Also that third one would be a great one for my facebook page...

Love you all!!

Elder Carney

Dec. 27, 2014-
Feliz Natal minha família e meus amigos! Natal aqui em Brasil é um pouco diferente, não tem as mesmas tradições, mas eles sabem como ter uma boa festa! Haha Christmas here is a little different, but it was so great to be here again for Christmas. This last Sunday we got to the church building and it was one of the first times on my entire mission where I had no one to go get to come to church... it was such a weird feeling! We decided to talk to literally everyone who passed by us and also get to know the neighbors of the church and unfortunately no one wanted to enter in at that exact moment but we got a lot of addresses and will return to visit those people! So we were bummed, we had worked hard that week but in opening the area it had been difficult to find someone to come to church and realyl feel the spirit there. So we went in and in the Gospel Essentials class there was an investigator there!!!!! Her name is Rosangela, she is the Relief Societies neighbor and has been invited many many times before but that day she decided to come to church! It was a miracle. Such a tender mercy. We got to know her and marked an appointment with her that afternoon. There we met her mother, Josefina, who is about 65 years old. We got to know them a little bit and started with a prayer and after we closed the prayer both of them were crying! Josefina told us that her prayer of 3 years had just been answered, she has a really strained relationship with her daughter and they really want to fix things and love each other and she said she just knew that we were sent to help her exactly with that! It was an incredible lesson and Josefina readily accepted a baptismal date. Rosangela seems to have an iceburg as we call it and we don´t know what is impeding her from accepting baptism yet but we are really praying to help her understand and to understand her needs right now. The next time we went there we went with their neighbor and it was a wonderful lesson. Rosangela hadn´t read the Book of Mormon so we read it with them and it was an great lesson, the Book of Mormon is so powerful, I love reading it with people, it brings such a sweet spirit. 
On Christmas Eve we had lunch at a recent converts house, Jorge, it was great. He has a handicap and lives alone, he also used to be a horder before he met the missionaries. He loves having the missionaries over and has such a strong testimony. He also basically designed his house using things he found over the years, it is beautiful! It was a great lunch. Very humbling. He spent a lot of time preparing everything just so he could have us 4 over for Christmas. He really tried to prepare his absolute best for us. I was grateful for him. That night we also got invited to dinner with President Zanforlin, who is the 2nd Counselor of the mission and lives near our area but in the Jaçanã stake. It was wonderful being with his family, him and his wife are super awesome people, it was uplifting to talk with them. 
Oh! Also on Tuesday we had our Mission Christmas Conference! It was so great, it took a ton of planning to do, but the entire mission got together in Sorocaba. The missionaries from the Capital woke up early to get a bus that the mission rented. We got there and it was awesome, President and Sister Farnes gave great Christmas messages and then the office staff took turns reading nativity scriptures and between each reading everyone rose to sing Christmas hymns. Also a new elder played a christmas song on the violin, it was great, he was realyl nervous but did a fantastic job.
Then we had a great group picture which is going to be sent here soon and then we had a great lunch (BBQ!!!). Afterwards we had a talent show and it was great, haha a couple misisonaries imitated President Farnes and used his kids in their talent. It was hilarious. President and Sister Farnes and their kids made a video as well, it was pretty funny.
Christmas was fun, we ate at this great families house and the sister made us SO much food. Haha so so much. It was really good too, It was great to be with them and also there were a ton of non members there so that made it even better! Then I got to talk to you all which made for a very very good Christmas!
Afterwards we worked!! I loved it! It wsa so great beacuse so many people were home and we were able to talk about Christ and really serve him on such a special day. I just loved it. I love being on a mission. It made me sad to think that it is my last Christmas on the mission. I love serving my Savior in this way. I love Brasil and these people. Through this service it has become a sacred place to me. I just love it here. Love you all, have a great week and Happy New Years!

Elder Carney

Jan 3, 2015
I just cannot believe that it is already 2015! Boy did this last year fly by. This week was really good, we were able to work hard and we received a lot of blessings! I am so grateful for how Heavenly Father blesses us. 
Last week as I said I was able to have a pretty cool opportunity to see the baptism of one of my old investigators from Tucuruvi. While I was in the area he couldn´t be baptized as he wasn´t married, but now he doesn´t have anything hold him back, so Felipe got baptized!!! Normally we can´t go to the baptisms in our old areas because it´s far and it would gast a lot of time. But since I live in Tucuruvi and was already at the office that day right before the baptism I was able to see it. And I actually got asked to baptize him! It was really great to be able to bless Felipe and see him make this decision, it was really gratifying to see that. 
We also had a great day at church last week, we can see the members starting to get excited to be involved in the work. Both Josefina and Rosangela went to church and loved it. THe members received them really well. They invited them to a family night on Monday which went really well, haha it was at this member´s house in the middle of the forest!! Our area is in the city but is on the border with the hills/forest on the edge of the city and so we went there and there are monkeys, giant plants, dirt roads, a bunch of stuff that normally we don´t see in the capitol. It was a great experience to see the members receive Josefina so well, she really enjoyed herself and loved learning how to hold a family home evening as she is looking on how to strengthen her family relationships. Also, on Monday we were going to our area (by bus as always) and my companion was talking to a man right around when we were going to get off, so we decided to keep on talking to him about the church and get off a little bit later and go a different route to our appointment. Well we got off and didn´t really know how to get there!! Haha so we saw this young man sitting on the sidewalk in front of his house nad we asked him for directions. We ended up sitting down with him on the sidewalk and teaching him a lesson! His name is Emerson and he is 17, it was great, the Spirit was really strong and he accepted our invitation to be baptized on the 17th of this month! We are eager to keep teaching him and we were able to teach him and his father on New Year´s Day. Heavenly Father truly gave us a little miracle in finding him and having him be right there so we could ask for directions!
We are really trying to build our teaching pool since we opened the area  and we were so blessed this week! We met this couple named Antonio and Fatima, they are middle aged and don´t have any children, just a really great couple. They readily accepted our invitation to read the Book of Mormon and to be baptized. When we returned Antonio had read the first three chapters! We had marked 3 Nefi 11 for him to read but he ended up reading more! They both are very excited to go to church and are just really caring people. Also we had an appointment and unfortunately it fell through, but we asked for a glass of water from the man who told us that his neighbors weren´t home. He gave us water and we asked if we could say a prayer with him as a way to show our gratitude. He said yes and invited us in and we ended up teaching him and his wife and were able to invite them to church and mark dates with them as well! Heavenly Father really blessed us this week in finding people who are ready to be taught and accept the Gospel! I just loved it. We are realyl praying and doing our best to now follow up with them and help them go to churhc and there feel the Spirit. 
On Friday (yesterday) we had leadership counsel in Sorocaba, it was great as always to be trained by President and Sister Farnes. They are incredible. It was also interesting as we saw the goals that all of the different zones have for baptisms this month of january, I loved seeing how excited everyone was. This time President also invited the district leaders as a way to start of the year realyl united. It was great to be fed spiritually nad now we are psyched to follow up with the zone leaders nad really help the mission as a whole move forward and start off great for the new year.
I am just lovign it as always!! I had a little realization this week on New Year´s that my only full year of being a full time (young) missionary (because I definitely want to serve someday again) had passed!! It was crazy! It made me really sad to think that it was gone! But I also am really happy with the service that I gave this last year and that I was able to grow, help other people, represent Christ, and really consecrate myself to the Lord this whole entire year. I am so incredibly grateful to serve as a missionary right now, it is the best thing I could be doing with my life. It is truly fantastic being a missionary. 
Just to finish it off, we had a funny moment in language study, Elder Farias is learning english and so I was quizzing him on words. Here´s how it went but translated into english.

Me: How do you say "barba" in english?
Elder Farias: Ummm... barbation????
Me: Hahaha no, it´s "beard"!
Elder Farias: How is it? "Bieber"????

Have a great week my family and remember to open your mouths!!!!!!

Elder Carney

Carta Trunky Dec. 20, 2014 & PICTURES

Dec. 20, 2014-
Well unfortunately as this title says I received my "trunky letter" as the mission officially calls it. It was asking me for information regarding my home airport and things like that so that they can purchase my plane ticket. I iwill officially be leaving brasil on June 3rd and getting into Denver on the 4th. I filled out everything and put in your info and cell numbers. The only thing that I was not sure about is if you guys are going to come and get me here in Brasil or not! Have you and Dad decided on anything? If you really really want to come and get me then that would be awesome, if not then that is also totally fine with me! I think we had already talked about this and I had told you that I would be ok with whatever, I think it would be cool to show my mission to you two but I also know that Bradley would probably not be able to come depending on his mission call (if it is international he can´t leave the country as the church will have his passport). I also think it would be cool to just do the traditional experience. Let me know, I thought you had said something about a vacation after I got home so maybe you already have decided, but just send me a quick email to let me know so I can give it to the secretary. Love you Mom! Don´t get trunky!!

Elder Carney

Canteriera Dec. 20, 2014
This week just flew by, there was so much to do, haha but there is always a lot to do so that really isn´t very new! We had a great meeting with President on Monday night, it was the last meeting with the four assistents and so President had us over to the mission home and just asked us about us! It was different, he said he wanted his family to get to know us better and so one at a time he just asked us questions about our families, about our missions, about what we liked most about the mission, our conversion stories, etc. It was really interesting, I loved hearing about Elder Farias, Elder Andersen, and Elder R Cruz. It was great, President is truly inspired. So we had a great night just getting to know each other a little better before Elder Andersen and Elder R Cruz went off to seperate areas. On Tuesday we had transfers and the new missionaries arrived, it was fun seeing them get there and how excited they all were. We went and did street contacts with them and one of the americans, Elder Stott, was super nervous, but he did such a great job, it was fun to see! At the end I told the man that it was the elder´s first day in Brasil and he was really shocked, truly the gift of tongues! We ate lunch with all of them and then took the bus with them to go to the mission office. There we had a really great transfer meeting, although it was so so weird because the missionaries that went home were all really great. There were 14 sisters that went home but it was strange because it was the group of sisters from my group in the MTC!! Ahhh! Really weird, but that´s ok! Elder Matthews went home, that was a big bummer, one of my best friends on the mission, as well as Elder Lima and Elder Costa who both served for 6 months int he office with me and Elder Singleton who was my comp in Itapeva. One of the weirdest parts was Elder Mussin going home! My trainer is officially back in Buenas Aires!!! So Tuesday and Wednesday were just insane as we got everyone off to their areas, talked to the missionaries going home and got them all off to the airport. On Tuesday after the transfer meeting I gave a training to all of the trainers, it was great talking with them and doing some practices. Well i asked Elder Mussin to come in and participate, he had no idea why. I was able to bring him up to the front and thank him for all that he did for me in training me and setting a really good standard for me for my mission and how to fulfill my missionary purpose. It was wonderful to be able to thank him for all that he did for me and help the trainers understand how they can have a positive and truly lasting influence on their companions missions. 
Elder J Silva who was my last companion in Itapeva is also going to be the new mission secretary so now he is living in the same house as me and working with me again, that will be really fun. 
On Wednesday we were finally able to get to our area, I am excited to get to know Elder Farias better, haha after a whole transfer together we hadn´t even taught together, so it was really good. We are excited, our area is HUGE, full of people, and just really good. Unfortunately we are entering in at a time when the members dont have as much trust or love for the missionaries as they could, haha so we are just doing everything we can to help them, build their confidence, and truly serve them. We also don´t have any investigators, we had one who is really solid and could be baptized right now but traveled to a different city and won´t return until february... haha but that is ok, we are starting things off and really working hard to bring other unto Christ! I am excited, it is a great challenge and I know that Heavenly Father wants us to be there right now and that He will help and guide us.
On Wednesday we were trying to figure out who we could visit and which members we needed to meet who were ward leadership, so we started on our way when an unrecognized number called us and I answered and it happened to be a member who was going to go on home teaching visits but his comp couldn´t join him so asked if we would be able to help! We took the opportuntiy and went with him and met several key members and from these members received 7 referrals!!! Heavenly Father truly does answer prayers! On Thursday we also were able to go to President´s house to have a office christmas dinner, it was really great. On the way one of the elders fainted in the bus (it was crazy hot and super super packed) so we got him off and he sat down and drank some water. He hadn´t eaten anything that entire day and it was so hot out with so many people and he´s been sick so that made for a not really good combination! Luckily we were close to President´s house and he could come and pick us up so that he wouldn´t have to get back on the bus. We had a great time with his famiyl with really good food and then we shared what each of us thought as important principles to live by in our lives, and his kids shared their favorite scriptures with us. At the end President gave each of us a tie of his, it was so cool to see, he didn´t tell us the meaning behind each one until afterwards but several of them were his favorite ties or that had an important story behind them. He is a really great man, taught us a lot throught that. On Friday we were able to work in our area again and really start things rolling in our area, haha it has been interesting thus far opening an area. 

Well, it has been a really really good week, I am so grateful to be serving a mission. I love this gospel. I love my Savior. I know that He lives. I know that He suffered, died, and lives again. I know that prayer is real, that we can openly communicate with the most powerful being in the universe, and that He happens to ask us to call Him by the title of Father. I know that our families can be together forever. I know that through faith, repentance, baptism, and the gift of the Holy Ghost we can follow our Savior and be eternally blessed. I love this work, I love helping others change their lives and come to the sweet knowledge that we have received through the power of the Holy Ghost. I hope that everyone has a wonderful Christmas, that we may remember what He did for us, that we may strive to be more like Him, and that we may bring others unto Him. Merry Christmas!!!

Elder Carney
Elder Mussin's  last night

Our Christmas tree

 Elder Farias and I at the temple a couple of weeks ago.

 Elder Gimenez and I with how were dressed that day on our splits in Pirituba last week... haha we were going to an important appointment and it was raining slightly, but then it just POURED, like the heavens decided to open up completely. HAha it was flooding the streets and just raining like crazy, well these people from a mattress store gave us these and insisted that we use them so we walked like this until our appointment, it actually worked out really well!

 Me with four of the sister from my group on their last day, Sister Hauet, Mills, Ward, and Yankura. 

Progresso` Dec. 7-14

Dec. 14- Pirituba
Yet another week of splits, it has been interesting getting to know so many different areas here in the mission and really getting to work along side so many fantastic missionaries! This week President decided that he was going to send us to a zone here in the Capital, Pirituba. It was super great, one of the zone leaders there is Elder Gimenez, who was my companion for two weeks while I was in Ariston. He was by far one of my favorite companions so far on the missionso it was great to be with him again. His companion right now is Elder Lopes, who is from Cape Verde. He is a great missionary and will finish his mission with me, it was cool getting to know him better. I was truly blown away this week with just how many people in that area have problems wiht the Word of Wisdom. It is really common, but it just seemed like literally every single investigator there struggled with that, it made for a very very full week of following up and making goals with tons of people and lots of prayers. There was a certain family that we are working with this week, a mom who has three sons, one toddler and two teenagers. One of her teenagers is now in a wheelchair because a shooting happened near where they live and he was shot three times. It was amazing to see this ladies faith and true desire to change. In some of these areas there is so much around them that isn´t good. She has had a problem with smoking but when the missionaries taught her she was smoking a pack a day and she immediately went down to 2 cigarretts a day. We were praying so much for her and trying our absolute best to help her stop smoking, well she did it!!!! Haha she was baptized today after church. Even though we were only there this week it felt so good to see her do it and stay strong and get baptized. I was able to speak with several other people about baptism and if they are ready or not to be baptized and I was amazed at the faith of some. One young man who has had a lot of struggles in his life thus far just started crying when we talked about repentance and what it means to him. He truly does want to turn his life around and he knows that thorugh the gospel he can. 
It was good working with all of these people this week, it made me really think in these people and how I can help them. They also had Stake Conference this weekend and I was amazed at how this stake truly is focusing on Missionary Work. The talks were incredible and President and Sister Farnes each did a wonderful job as well. It was a priveledge to be there. This morning early we got the transfers from President and found out how it is going to be. Now there will only be two assistents and Elder Farias and I will continue together. That will be fun, we will have an area now, Cantareira, which is right next door to my old area Tucuruvi. I am excited to work in my area and get to know these people. It will be great. Also my old companion, Elder J. Silva is going to be the new mission secretary and so I will be living in the same house as him and wokring with him again, that will be really awesome! I am just so grateful to be receiving so many blessings, I love speaking to so many people about Christmas and serving right now. I love this Gospel and I know that it is true. I love my Savior and I know that He suffered and died for us so that we might live again, just as He too lives. Have a great week everyone and remember to open your mouths!

Elder Carney  

Oh also I forgot to tell you a couple important details!! First I am almost positive that my Preparation Day will now be moved back to Saturday again since we will be working in the office and our area normally again and not traveling as much as we have been. So please send me emails before Saturday! It will make me really happ! Haha also I am pretty sure that we can do the following, I can start to skype you all at like 3-5 PM são paulo time! I am pretty sure that would be 10 AM to Noon in CO! I won´t be able to skype you for that long, just the normal time length, but now you can tell me what time in that period works better for you! Tell me a time and I will be on! But yeah, let´s go with that. So just tell me and I will be on then! Also, will we do skype again, that worked out well the last time.

Second we hung up the tree that you sent me mom!! I put up the ornaments and we put on appropriate christmas music and ate some food and all of the missionaries who work int he office wrote the blessings that they have on the ornaments and we hung them up! We also put up the pictures of the families of the other missionaries as well. So that is exciting, our apartment is ready now! Also Elder Farias is really psyched that he stayed with me because he wants to have the stocking that you sent mom, haha thanks! Love you all!!

Elder Carney

Dec. 7, 2014-
Hello there my wonderful family!! Como vocês estão??? Espero que vocês estejam bem. I have had quite a wonderful week here in Sorocaba! Again! President asked Elder Farias and I to come to Sorocaba and work with the elders from the Santana Zone in the Vila Progresso area. They are two great elders that I already know really well, Elder Patterson from Murrieta California and Elder Musick from all over the place (his dad is in the military and I think he is most recently from New York). It was a great week, haha holy cow Sorocaba is hot! It has been just killer hot here but Heavenly father always gives us tender mercies of clouds or the occasional rain at night while we are sleeping. And sun screen, lots of sun screen. This week was a week of perseverance, haha unfortunately not many people felt too keen to let us in this... BUT that is ok, because we taught a lot of lessons at their front door and we were even more grateful for the great people who did let us in. One time we were speaking with a man at his front gate and he seemed pretty hesitant to talk to us, then we found out that he is from Itapeva!! I knew exactly where his old street was and everything (it´s a small city so that really isn´t that hard actually) but he really opened up and we were able to teach and testidy about the Restoration to him. We asked if we could say a prayer with him and he ask us to come in where we met the rest of his three kids! It was a great experience mainly because we invited him to say the prayer as we always do at the first lesson and he did so good. The spirit was really strong, and I think his kids enjoyed seeing their father say a prayer. It was cool. We also have been talking to EVERYONE about the new initiative the church is doing called He is the Present, or in portuguese Ele é o Presente. The church is doing it here in Brasil as well and we are really striving to tell everyone about it. We have had some really sweet experiences as we have asked people who don´t have time to just let us watch a quick video with them. It brings the spirit so strongly. We taught a man and showed him the video and the spirit was so strong in that little apartment room, he really enjoyed it and talked about how he wanted to be a better dad and husband and how he needed to really guide his family to make right choices. We also had other good experiences, one time we got at the house at 9 and the other two elders hadn´t come back yet and they had the keys so we went to do contacts around the apartments where they live. It was great, we ended up teaching and getting to know a neighbor of theirs and it was cool to see how receptive he was! Small miracles like not having the keys!
It was a really good week, we also had Mission Leadership Council, it was really good, so great to see so many friends and also to see how the missionaries help one another with the problems that we have or difficulties that we have as a mission. It was a really edifying experience! Also this last month we broke the mission record for baptisms in a month, we were really really excited. 
Overally I am so grateful to be serving here. I love my mission. I know that the best thing I could be doing right now is serving a mission. I am a representative of Jesus Christ. In what other way could I be more happy during Christmas than being His servant and helping others come to know Him. I love this Gospel. I know that Christ lives. He loves us. He was born, lived a perfect life, suffered, died, and lives again, all so that we too may one day live with Him and our Heavenly Father and our families. I love being here and serving my Master. I am truly grateful to have this opportunity. Love oyu all, have a great week!!