Monday, June 1, 2015

Last email!! 6/1/15

June 1, 2015 - This is the last one! I love you all, I love being a missionary. I look forward to seeing you on Thursday, please know that I just love this gospel! I love being a servant of the Lord. I love serving our fellow brothers and sisters. I will truly miss being a missionary, but I know that there are also wonderful things to come. Até logo!

Elder Carney

May 25, Testemunho
This last week was a pretty rough one, we are just working so hard! It was really an interesting experience being interviewed by my president for the last time, I am so grateful I had that time to talk with him. I just love the mission so much. As I have dedicated my life to the Lord for these last two years, I have been so blessed beyond measure. At times it may feel as if we pay a price, like it is a sacrifice, but hte mission is anything but that. As in all gospel situations, the Lord is so merciful. As we give all that we have, even though it may be small, the Lord amplifies what we give and makes up the rest. He also gives us so much in return. 
I love my Savior, Jesus Christ. I know that He lives. I know that through His Atonement, we will be able to live with each other, in families, with our Heavenly Father, forever. I love the gospel. I know that The Book of Mormon is true, I know that through reading it we are able to come to know our Father in Heaven and His Son. I know that Joseph Smith saw God the Father and Jesus Christ, that he was called as a prophet and that the prophet today is Thomas S Monson. 
I know that through obedience to the little things, through daily scripture study, prayer, weekly church attendance, repentance, tithes and offerings, and temple worship, we can be perfected in Christ. I echo the words of Mormon, because of my current calling and because of the covenants I have made with our Father through baptism and other ordinances, "Behold, I am a disciple of Jesus Christ, the Son of God. I have been called of him to declare his word among his people, that they might have everlasting life (3 Nephi 5:13).
I know that this is the true church of Jesus Christ. Although I am sad at the thought that my mission is ending, I know that I will be able to continue representing Christ through my actions and because of my covenants with God. I love this gospel and I love our family. In the name of Jesus Christ, amen.

Elder Carney

May 25, 2015
This last week was really good, full of great things! This last week we just were working hard as always, it has been pretty hot out and it has been giving me lots of opportunities to ask for cups of water! Haha Brasilians are so wonderful, they are almost always so considerate and welcoming, and when they give you water they have to come to the gate to talk to you... ;)
I was able to go to Araçoiaba da Serra this last week to do a baptismal interview, it was great because I was with Elder Ashford! It was really good being with him and working hard in his area. He is a great friend and a wonderful missionary, his investigator was incredible. His name was Anderson and he is just super solid. He had a lot of good questions and he really is genuinely excited to be baptized! At the end I asked him if he had any other questions about anything and he thought for a second and then asked me what counsel I would say to him as he is starting on this new path and life. Haha I was surprised!! That was different to say the least! So I told him about doing the small things that make the rest of the big things go well, daily study of the Book of Mormon, daily prayer, and weekly church attendance, as well as obeying the commandments. It is truly the little things that will allow us to receive eternal life. 
The next day I had my last interview with President Farnes. It was so so good to be able to talk with him and receive counsel and a blessing from him. He is truly an inspired man and I am so grateful to have been able to serve and learn with him. It was pretty rough. I am just going to miss being a missionary. It´s so wonderful to be able to serve in this capacity. I will be forever grateful for all of this. He taught me a lot and gave me wonderful advice, counsel, and helped me make really solid goals for the rest of my life. He also said something really interesting that I had already heard him say before. He taught me that I won´t be returning to the "real" world, as many people say. He taught that what I am living right now, is truly the real world. The world that is outside is becoming more and more artificial every day, the real world is based on what I have been doing for the last two years, in serving as a representative of the Lord. In living the gospel. I loved talking with him and I wrote down a lot of the things he taught me.
The rest of the week was really good. We found this good older couple. They are like 70 already, and have been living together for a long time. They aren´t married but are really open to getting married so that they can be baptised. I won´t be here to see them get married or baptized, but we are going to continue working with them and helping them progress. 
Andreia and Roberto are set to get baptized this weekend, probably on Friday night. All prayers are welcome, they are just so good and will need help as they arrive at this point! Aline is also another investigator that is really good, she really enjoyed the Book of Mormon. She also has a brother that died a year ago in a car accident and we taught about the Plan of Salvation and baptisms for the dead. It was awesome, afterwards we were pretty unsure about how she was feeling about baptism, so we asked! She said she is super at peace and feeling really tranquil about her baptism. Then she asked what she will need to change in her life as she is baptised, haha so we taught her briefly about the Word of Wisdom. It was good, she is super prepared. She doesn´t smoke, use drugs, drink tea, and she hates coffee! Haha miracle! And she used to drink a lot but she realized that it is harmful and so now she rarely drinks, and she committed to stop! Woo hoo! So prayers for her as well! She is marked for baptism for Sunday after the church meetings!
I saw this last week that the mission definitely doesn´t get any easier the more time you are out. Haha our investigators have been really facing a lot of trials and we have been feeling like we are being blessed with a lot of opportunities to be tried and strengthen our faith. It´s been good.
Today we were able to have a zone activity, we played some touch football, it was really fun and then we played a form of free for all dodgeball, which was also really awesome. Now my body is really sore, but it was well worth the pain! 

I will probably not be sending an email this next week, I will leave my area on Sunday afternoon and from that point on I will be busy doing meetings, going to the temple, and visiting some recent converts in some of my areas. So this is it. I will send a separate email here in a moment. Love  you all and remember, open your mouths!

Elder Carney

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