Monday, November 26, 2012

Photos from Brazil - November 26, 2012

Landon uploaded some photos from his mission. You can view them here:

Letter - November 26, 2012

FAMILY!!!!  I am so glad its been another week so that I get to talk to you all again.  First off, President said we can email family, so if Uncle Curt or anyone else wants to email me, they can directly.  I miss you all like crazy!  I got your Christmas package ready today!  I will be sending it off tomorrow so be ready for it.  It should be pretty sweet!

So this week was 100x better!!!  I am starting to love it out here.  The week started off normal.  I was still sick so Talvane took me to the doctor.  The doctors office is at the hospital here and is soooo sketchy!  It is on the same floor as the emrgency rooms...  I saw people get rushed in, I saw people covered in blood from head to toe, I saw people go into a room and come out bawling after saying their final goodbyes, and I saw a body bag get wheeled out.  Luckily I didnt see the body.  It was seriously the saddest thing ever.  We didnt get into the doctor, so we went the next day.  They drew my blood and did an xray of my chest cuz I was having pressure from coughing.  Everythhing looked great and they gave me more medication.  This time it is actually helping.  I feel back to 100% now and I love it.

So Talvane got an emergency transfer on Friday to go be a Zone Leader in Lajes.  So I got a new companion on Friday.  His name is Elder Val and is from Layton.  He is a really cool kid!  He played basketball and soccer in high school, so this morning we went and shot around at the church.  It was a lot of fun.  It helps that he knows English too! haha.  But he has really helped me with my Portugues and it is coming along nicely.

On Saturday there was a ward talent show.  They go ALL OUT here! haha it was a lot of fun!  They were bumpin American music like Shania Twain.  We were definitely getting into it.  Then me and three other Elders sang Silent Night or Noite Feliz with an investigator.  It went really well.  I sang really quiet so that they could hear the good singers and not my terrible voice! haha.  But it was a lot of fun!  I love the ward members here.  They are so friendly and so welcoming.  We eat at a members house every single day for lunch, cuz lunch is the biggest meal for them here.  It is great and I love the food here. I am glad that you guys accepted Eddy on Facebook.  We stop by his house almost every night before going home.  They are members and are such a big help to us out here.  I love them a lot.  I will Skype you guys from their house on Christmas :)

Last night, we taught Ajona and Leblum, the two guys from Haiti.  We taught them about the Book Of Mormon.  I could feel the Spirit so strong and I think that they could too.  I love the Spirit that I feel as we teach this true gospel.  I love this gospel and I love the opportunity that I have to share it with others and bring the happiness to their lives.  Both of them committed to reading 3 Nephi 11, and we are going to follow up with them tomorrow about it.  So I will keep you posted :)

Sounds like you guys had a great Thanksgiving!  Mine was pretty lame cuz I spent the day at the doctors and just thought of you guys having fun! haha.  I miss you all like crazy!  I am lovin it out here and I know it will keep getting better and better, especially as I learn this language.  I can feel the Lord helping me every step of the way.  I cant thank you all enough at home for all your prayers.  I have truly felt so much spiritual help out here and it has helped me adjust quicker than I ever though possible.

Love you all and I will talk to you guys in a week :)

Elder Howard

Saturday, November 24, 2012


Holy Cow I miss you like freakin crazy!!!  So President is crackin down on the rules, so we can only email family.  We cant email friends or even other missionaries.  Pretty lame.  So if people ask, just send them this weekly email.  Also, we arent allowed to chat back and forth either.  Pretty lame as well!

This week had its ups and downs.  It is definitely a rollercoaster out here, but I think that the rollercoaster is going up.  It is just a rough adjustment for me.  I have never prayed so hard in my life.  Or so much.  I feel like I am constantly pleading with my Heavenly Father for help and he sends it.  I love prayer so much.  Through prayer, we are able to talk to our Creator one on one.  WE, insignificant people, get to talk to the most powerful being in the world.  How cool is that?  I feel a lot of help come through prayer.  I am so grateful for prayer.

So this week had some cool experiences!  We taught these two men, one named Lebloom and the other Ajona.  They are from Haiti.  We got to their house, and it was only one room.  There are three beds in there, a tiny TV and a stove.  I just wanted to cry I felt so bad for them.  We are so blessed to have so much.  They live in one room underneath an unfinished building.  This building is where they work everyday.  They are away from their family in Haiti.  Their kids and wives live there.  They told us how so many members of their family have died.  I just wanted to cry again hearing all this.  Super sad to hear how hard their lives are.  But we taught them the first lesson, and I did a lot of the teaching.  Elder Talvane pushes me to teach, and it really helps me use my Portuguese   At the end, we committed Ajona to baptism, and Lebloom is going to pray about our lesson, and if he receives an answer, he will be baptized.  So cool!  We want to have them baptized by the end of this month.  It would be awesome!

We are also teaching another lady named Jindira.  She has been taught for a while now.  She has been a smoker for 40 years now.  But she believes in the things we teach her and she knows the church is true.  She just needs to take that leap of faith and be baptized.  Along with her, we are teaching her cousins.  A wife, husband and young child.  We also invited them to be baptized.  They will pray about it and see if they get an answer.  I hope that they do.

Today we went on a crazy cool hike for PDay!  I took some super cool pictures.  Is there a website that I could upload all my pictures each week so that you guys can see them too?  I want to share all of them with you guys!  And sorry, I dont have my cable to upload photos this week.  On Saturday, we went and toured a Brazilian Navy ship.  It was super cool!!  Also, I teach English class twice a week each week.  I really like it, cuz I get to speak English! haha.  Portugues fries my brain each day, but all the people here say that my Portugues is the best they have heard for a new missionary.  So I just need to be patient with myself.

I love hearing all about your guys week!!  It sounds like you are having so much fun together!  Please please please dont worry about me out here.  Thats the last thing that I want.  I dont want you guys to worry about me.

I love you all and I will talk to you again next week!!!  Try to find a website or something that we can upload photos back and forth to eachother!


Elder Howard

Monday, November 12, 2012

Letter - 11/12/2012

FAMILY!!!!! I miss you all so much!! Like a lot.

My first are is called ItajaĆ­. I love the people here and it is a super cool place. It is up the coast from Floripa. The members here are so welcoming and so nice! They all told me that my Portugues is the best they have ever heard for a greenie (a new missionary).

My companion is named Elder Talvane. He is a Brasilian and only speaks a little bit of English. He is awesome tho!! He is super funny and so nice to me. This week I got sick with a cough, and one night I had a fever, and for a whole hour straight while I slept, he kept a cold rag on my forehead and it got rid of the fever. He is so selfless and so helpful. I am so blessed to have him in my life.

We have done a lot of teaching here too. I love it cuz we get fed by the members every single day for lunch. It is so great! The food here is absolutely fantastic and the members are always so great. I shared the quick little message with them each meal. We have taught a lot of investigators too. Mainly just the first lesson. Talvane does most the teaching, but leaves me the part about the restoration. I teach that whole part. It is great. I always feel the spirit so strong in our lessons. I hope the investigators feel it too. I pray for them every night.

We ran into an Anti Mormon the other day. haha I only understood a little of what he was saying, but he was an idiot! haha he was comparing Joseph Smith to Marilyn Manson and Ozzy Osbourne. But thats alright, cuz when he dies he will see who was right.

I teach English classes two times a week to anyone who wants to come. I have had help from Elder Perren who is an American in the other half of Itajai. It is super cool cuz a lot of them are really good at English so it is nice being able to talk to them. But My Portugues is coming along, and it helps to be out here, cuz this is the best place to learn it. It is coming along, I just need to be more patient cuz I just want to be fluent already!!! haha

Floripa was beautiful!! I got a window seat for the flight in and got some great pictures. We met President and got to go walk around for a little while by the beach. I think me and Talvane might go to the beach today. I dont think we can walk on the beach but we can go close :)

I got the package!! Thank you all so much. And I dont need the driving permit cuz we dont have a car here. 

So last week at the CTM, we were investigators and we used the Whoopie Cushion on some younger missionaries there. It was absolutely hilarious!

I love you all!!! Tell Morg that I love her as well. It helps me when I can talk to you all. I love hearing from you all. And if you send letters, just send them to the mission home address. I only get to pick them up once a month tho at zone conferences. By the way, I went to the city where Uncle Clarks friend lives, its called Balneario Camboriu, and it was for our zone conference. It is like the Las Vegas of Brasil! hahah elders arent allowed to serve there cuz girls wear too little of clothing. Good thing when we went it was raining so everyone was fully clothed! haha Love you all! My camera just died. I will send photos next week :)


Elder Howard

Julia found a photo of ItajaĆ­ so we though we'd include it here.

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Letter - 11/6/12


I made it to FLORIANOPOLIS!!!  It is sooo pretty here!  All the elders are so nice and the mission president and his wife are great!  We are all at the mission home right now and they are letting us send a quick email to let you know that we made it safe.  I can already tell that Im going to love it here.  Everyone is so welcoming and so nice.  When we got off the plane, I looked at the mountains and the green and I couldnt stop smiling!  hahaha so lame.  But I am super excited to be here.  I cant wait to get to work and bring people this gospel.  Im a little nervous about the language, but everybody is.  This will be the best place to learn it.  I havent met my new companion yet, but Im hopin for a good one.  Also, I think my pdays will be on Mondays from now on, so the next time I get to email you guys will be in a week.  I LOVE YOU ALL!  And tell Morg that I love her as well.  I cant wait to get out there and meet new people!  Let me know WHEN Romney wins :)  Love you all and I will write you when I can.

Elder Howard

Friday, November 2, 2012

Letter 10/30/2012

FAMILY!!!  I miss you all like crazy!!!

Yesterday I went proselyting and it was such a great experience.  The first guy we talked to was a guy named Orlando.  He was an older man and he loved God and Jesus.  He was Evangelical or something like that.  He talked to us a lot and we understood a little, but then I talked to him about the BOM and how it talks about Jesus Christ.  He seemed excited to hear about it.  I bore testimony of it, and then gave it to him, and when I did, he started kissing it and talking to the sky! haha it was super funny but super cool.  I told him to read it and to pray about it to know if it is true.

We placed five BOM's total!  Which is really good cuz it was just around the MTC and everyone here knows about the missionaries or has a BOM cuz there are so many missionaries around.  We stopped a lady named Vanessa.  She was super nice and probably in her 30's.  She was Catholic and had never heard about the BOM.  I bore witness of it and told her all about it.  I then showed her Moroni's Promise, and while I read that to her, she reading it in a whisper to herself.  She seemed really excited about it!

The other one I want to tell about was a kid probably around my age.  He was sitting on the sidewalk looking in a phonebook, and he too was Catholic.  He was a really nice kid.  We shared about the BOM again, and bore testimony of it.  He seemed interested as well.  I hope they all read it.  If not, I planted 5 seeds yesterday which is super cool :)  I never forget Orlando being the first guy I gave a BOM to.  It makes me so excited for Florianopolis.  I just wish I was fluent already! haha.  But I know it will come, and that learning it in the field will make it come that much faster.  I am so ready to leave the CTM!

Mom that is awesome about the TV Show!  I prayed for you all week.  I also talked to all my friends about your company.  They think it is such a great idea so keep up the hard work!  Sorry I can't reply to everyone's emails but I love y;ou all!!  I am hopin next week that I'll be able to email you all, but I;m not sure yet.  It is crazy that I have been out two months already.  I can't wait for FLORIPA!!

Love you all and I'll enmail you soon!!!

Elder Howard