Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Feliz Natal!!!

**I haven't had time to add in all of my contacts yet, so I'm sending this to everyone that I possibly can!**

Feliz Natal means Merry Christmas, for those of you who aren't familiar with Portuguese ;)

We get 20 minutes to email today, so I thought I'd write some sort of newsletter.

We have a pretty awesome day planned today at the Missionary Training Center. First, we have a Christmas Celebration from 9:30am-11:00am, then a Christmas Meal, then a Christmas Devotional (where one of the 12 apostles (really high up in the church leadership)) will be speaking! And I have to give the closing prayer! In front of over a thousand people! Someone else in my district (aka group of missionaries (there are 8 of us)) is giving the opening prayer, so we both get to sit on the stand with the apostle and the MTC presidency, and we might even get to shake the apostle's hand! :D (it's exciting, trust me)

After that, we're going to have a review of the devotional as a district, which I really enjoy, because the Spirit can be felt so strongly in these meetings with my district. Everyone in my district is between 18 and 20 years old (and then there's me, 22), and we've all been here since December 4th, and we all leave on the same day. We're also all learning Portuguese, we're all male, and we all are going to Brazil (3 different places between the 8 of us though). All of the Elders in my district have great faith, and I feel privileged to be around them every day. I have learned so much here at the MTC, and I have changed and grown a lot too. I'm pretty good at Portuguese so far, considering that I've only been here for 3 weeks! I know that I could not have learned as much as I have in 3 weeks without the Lord's help, and without the amazing teachers that we have here. We keep getting substitute teachers (I think we've had 6 different teachers now), but we do have 2 main teachers who are here the most often. They are seriously all amazing people though. I don't know where the MTC Presidency found these people, but they are great. Absolutely wonderful. They can be really funny, but then they can also be really spiritual and serious. I love that contrast. I have learned a lot through their examples, as well as through the examples of the other Elders in my district.

I got some great presents (they were really thoughtful!) from my fiancée, Alissa, and my mom today! It made me so happy to receive something from people back at home. We all had our parents send presents for this one Elder in my district (he's my companion now), because his parents aren't really supporting him being on his mission, and he's having a rough time I guess :/ so we all piled our presents on his lap this morning, and it was so funny. He seems pretty happy! :D

I leave the MTC on January 13th, and at that point, if I don't have my visa yet, I'll be reassigned to a mission in the U.S. until I get my visa to go to Brazil. Either way, I will still be happy, and I know that the Lord has a plan for all of us, and that He will make sure that I'm in the right place, right when I need to be. :)

I want you all to know that I have a testimony that Jesus Christ came into the world and throughout His life, He showed us the way that we can return to live with our Heavenly Father after we die. I know that He is our Savior and that he suffered and died for our sins, so that we could have the ability to repent and be cleansed from our guilt and our sins. It is only through Him that we can return to live with our families and with God in heaven. If we follow Jesus Christ's example, and have faith in His gospel (His teachings, His words), and repent, we can truly be forgiven for our mistakes, and live with Him again. I know that The Book of Mormon is a true book, and that we can read it, and pray to know the truth of it.

Alright, I have to go now, but I want you to know that I love you all, and I wish you a Merry Christmas! Have a great day!

(or Happy Hanukkah :])


Elder Canto

1 comment:

  1. Merry Christmas to you Joseph! Love YOU Always and in All Ways, Dad