Monday, October 19, 2015

Things are coming to a close...

Well, this week is the last week of my mission... I can't believe it.

I have learned so much during this time, and I will be returning home with many lessons learned, and many great memories. It'll be interesting trying to adjust to a regular life again. I'm looking forward to the cold New York climate though, that's for sure! haha!

Well, I need to get going, but I just wanted to write a few things quickly here, as this is likely my last time emailing as a missionary.

I love you all, and I thank each of you for all of your prayers, your love, and your support during these 2 years.

There are lots of happy reunions coming up soon! I can't wait!

I'm going to give it my all during this last week. :)

I love this church, and our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, and I know that as we seek to follow His teachings in our lives, that many blessings will come. I know that the work that I have been doing during these 2 years is truly the Lord's work. If anyone has any doubts about the church or it's teachings, all you need to do, is search, ponder, and pray. And ask the missionaries! They can help you! haha

Anyways, I will close here. I love this crazy country (Brazil), and the people here, and I will miss them all like crazy.

Elder Canto

Monday, October 12, 2015


Well, the last month of my mission has finally arrived, and it's honestly, really hard to believe. Before I know it, it'll be over! Meh. -- haha

The past 2 weeks have gone pretty well, and we've been teaching quite a few different people, but, we haven't had much success up until now, as far as baptisms go. We did manage to bring a man to church that had become less-active though, yesterday. We had a funny experience with him on Saturday. We went with him to an inactive member's house that's way out in the country, to have lunch at his house. He had run into him in town on Tuesday, and he said "Hey, invite the missionaries to go to my house on Saturday, and I'll kill a chicken, and we can eat it for lunch!", and so, he told us, and on Saturday, we met up with him, and took the bus to this guy's house. The directions were "The first house after the bridge.", and we managed to find it, but the guy was at his neighbor's house, and so we went there, and his neighbor was like "He's over there." and pointed to a bedroom. He said from inside of the room, that he was too embarrassed to come out and talk with us, because he had been drinking, and he also hadn't prepared lunch like he'd said he would, and so we just had to go back into town and eat lunch a bit later than normal. We didn't actually see this guy either -- he just talked from inside of the bedroom.

I was at the grocery store with my companion, and I happened to see that they had frozen waffles, which I had never seen before in Brazil, and so I decided to buy them, and.. that was my lunch! haha! Here's evidence:

There are no toasters in Brazil, from what I've seen so far, so... I made the waffles like this!

We can rebuild him! We have the technology!

Last night, I had a dream that it was snowing here in Paraíba, and I told Elder Markham (in my dream) "Dude! I never imagined that it would snow here!!! This is awesome!!! Let's go!", and then we went and had a snowball fight with all of the members of the Queimadas Ward here. XD It was so awesome!

Anyways, I've got to get going now. Today is "Dia das Crianças" (Children's Day), and lots of the members have the day off of work, so we're having a barbecue here at the church. I'm hungry, so I'll be going now.. bye!

Have a great week!


Elder Canto

Just 2 weeks left... x_o

Monday, September 28, 2015

Surprise! You were transferred!

So I was transferred last week, and it was a huge surprise to me, since I was the newest missionary in my last area, and what's even stranger, is that everyone else stayed there! My old companion, Elder Riffo, called me twice last week, and told me that everyone misses me, and that this girl that we were teaching was baptized yesterday! I was really excited about that. Her mom had said that she wouldn't be baptized until next year (unless a miracle happened), just 2 weeks ago, and then, all of a sudden, she changed her mind! :D

My new area is called Queimadas, which has something to do with burning or something burnt, if you translate it. It's really hot here -- but apparently that's not why it has this name, hah. My new companion is Elder Markham, and he's an American, from Colorado, and... he's awesome. But also, crazy. (in a good way XD) He's been on his mission for 8 months, and he's still learning Portuguese -- but for the most part, he speaks really well.

We spent this past week getting to know a bunch of the church members here, and learning the area. We found 14 new investigators, but ended up dropping the majority of them before the end of the week, and we had 1 lady come to visit the church. I'm not sure how things will go with her, because she LOVES her church, but.. who knows! Hopefully she'll make some progress this week.

We only have water between Tuesday afternoon and Saturday morning here, and so we have to keep water in these 2 plastic bins that we have, to use on the weekends. I'm not in the US anymore... haha!

Last night, we went up on the roof with the owner of our apartment and watched the lunar eclipse, where the moon turned completely dark -- it was interesting! Apparently, there won't be another one until the year 2037, so I'm glad that we got to see it!

Hopefully we'll be able to find some people who are more interested this week, and we'll be able to teach more lessons at people's homes.

I can't believe that I only have 4 weeks left on my mission, and that I'll be flying home exactly one month from today... I'm going to have to make the most of this time that I have left! I love being a full-time missionary, and I am really going to miss it, especially when I'm at home. But, I am really excited to see everyone again! :) Especially my fianceé! (that means you, Alissa :D)

Have a wonderful week!

We didn't end up going to the parade on Independence Day, by the way. We decided that it wasn't a good place for 2 missionaries to be.

Elder Canto

Monday, September 7, 2015

Happy Brazilian Independence Day!

Hi everyone!

Today is Independence Day in Brazil, and we're going to a parade in about 2 hours. I'm about to sign out here, but, before I go, I just wanted to mention some things that happened this week.

We did a lot of tracting (door knocking, street contacting) this week, and.. it didn't really amount to anything in the end, but, maybe in the future, these people will visit the church. Nobody that we talked to this past week was at church yesterday -- except for the random guy that came up to us in the supermarket and asked us when the meetings are at church, hah. He lives in the other 2 elders' area though.

However! Good news -- we spent all week visiting a 20 year-old guy once a day, to help him prepare for baptism, and he was baptized yesterday! He's the first person to be baptized in the new church building. We brought the giant blue water tank over to the new building on Saturday, and we weren't able to find anyone to fill it up, but a truck with barrels of water showed up while we were in front of the church building, and we asked if they could fill it up, and they happened to have just enough water left to fill it up! That was definitely a miracle.

Here's a picture from yesterday, after the baptism. I'm sorry that it's not really the best picture -- the elder who was using my camera only took a few pictures, and most of them were blurry.. my companion has lots of good pictures from the baptism yesterday, though, so I'll have to get those from him later.
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The guy who was baptized is on the right side. He's obsessed with Justin Bieber... hah. Crazy Brazilians...

We went on a short hike this morning to a big pond with our ward mission leader -- here are a few pictures:
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Elder Taraveira (from Cape Verde, Africa)(he's crazy. XD)

Anyways, I need to get going now, or I won't have time to eat lunch!

I hope that you all have a great week, and, Happy Brazilian Independence Day! (and happy Labor day, too. XD)

I'm looking forward to seeing you all/talking with you all 7 weeks from now!


Elder Canto

Monday, August 24, 2015

A miracle happened this week

This week, for the first time ever, I had the opportunity to baptize 2 people from the same family! A mother and her 10 year-old son. Also, another first -- these 2 people are the first people that I've ever baptized that I met just stopping them on the road to talk with them! All of the other people that I've baptized, I've met through members of the church (referrals), and so I'd kinda lost faith in the whole idea of "street contacts" and "door knocking"... but, this time, it worked out! It was such a great experience to teach this family. The lady said that she had seen missionaries walking around and talking with people and visiting people, and for a while, she had been thinking "Why don't these missionaries stop and talk with me, or visit me?", and just a few weeks later.. we stopped and talked with her! haha! I thought that that was really interesting. The Lord is truly preparing people to hear our message, that the Gospel of Jesus Christ has been restored to the earth in it's original and pure state. Did we just happen to talk with her at exactly the right time? No way! The Lord puts these people in our path, when He sees that we are prepared to open our mouths and share the gospel, and when He sees that the person is ready to hear/receive/accept the gospel.

We visited this mother and son every day this past week, except for Saturday, and helped them to prepare for baptism. She had to give up drinking coffee, which she did every day (and a lot, too!), and she was able to do that after just 2 days! We gave her something to substitute for coffee, which is called "Cevada" here, and I believe is called "Barley" in English, and so she started to drink that. It's very similar to coffee (or, so I've heard), but it doesn't have the bad things in it that coffee has. By the end of the week, they were totally ready, and so they both had their baptismal interview on Friday, and they passed! They were baptized yesterday (Sunday), and it went great. We bought a cake for them, too, because we were really excited/happy for them! One of our investigators makes cakes, and so we asked her to make one for the baptism -- it was really good. Chocolate.. :d ... hah

The only downside, is that now, we have no one left who is progressing, and so we have to start all over again! We do have one girl who is kinda progressing, and we'll be visiting her this week.

I taught the Gospel Principles class yesterday, and it went really well! I love learning/teaching about the basics. :)

One thing that Elder Taraveira told me last night (he lives with me), that a member had told to him, was that the reason that some returned-missionaries end up going inactive or being less-active members of the church, is because when they are released, they go back to being called by their first name, and they forget the name "Elder". If they would remember this name, they would continue strong in the church. But, since some returned-missionaries forget that they were once "Elder", they end up losing sight of the path that they were on. He said to him, "Never forget that your name is 'Elder'. Even after you are released, your name continues to be 'Elder'". He said that he would never forget what that member told him, and now I won't, either. (this goes for those who are or were once 'Sister', too!)

I hope that you all have a great week! I have to get going now.

Tchau! :D

Elder Canto

P.S. Just 9 weeks away from home! I'm still working hard, though! Don't worry! ;)

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Our make-shift baptismal font.. haha! The person who is being baptized has to kneel on the bottom, or else it doesn't work out too well! Oh hey -- we're going to be moving to a new building this Sunday! I won't be living in the church anymore );

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Another baptism, which happened on Friday :)

P-Day last week on the rocky hill (it's a tourist attraction here!)
Left to right: Me, Elder Riffo (my companion), and Adriano (our Ward Mission Leader)

Monday, August 10, 2015


Well, after 1 year and 4 months, I finally left Zona Rangel, and was transferred to Zona Liberdade (Liberty). My new area is called Esperança (Hope), and apparently, the group here recently became a branch. There are about 50 people attending right now, someone told me... I'm a lot more West now in Paraíba than I've ever been, and I'm really excited to be here. Something funny, is that we live in the church! XD The church has 3 classrooms, and there's a main room with a table, a pulpit, a microphone, and chairs, for Sacrament Meetings. If you go past the main room, there's a sink, and then there's another door, which enters into the kitchen, and there's a staircase which goes up to our bedroom. All 4 of us elders share one bedroom, and so there are 2 bunkbeds in the room. I'm living with an American, who is from Missouri (Elder Mather), an African (Elder Taravera (sp?)), and my companion, Elder Riffo, is from Chile! I've never had a hispanic companion -- this should be interesting! :D

I don't know much about my area yet, but when I do, I'll let you all know.

On Saturday and Sunday I was super sick and barely ate anything until now. I had a fever and a headache on Saturday, and Sunday, too. On Sunday, I ate some bread, and drank some juice, and then I threw up about 30 minutes later... so.. I didn't eat much of anything since Friday! I'm extremely tired right now. I'm recovering from my sickness though, at the moment, I'm pretty sure.. don't worry about me! hah

I need to get going now, but, I hope that you all have a great week!

Sorry for the lack of consistency with these updates

Elder Canto

Monday, July 13, 2015

I lost 1 week of my mission! :S

So I found out last week while talking with the Executive Secretary, that I'll actually be going home on October 29th, instead of November 5th! Now I'll be able to celebrate Halloween in the US! Awesome! :D

Yesterday we had 101 people attend Sacrament Meeting, which was the highest number of people I've seen at church here so far! We also had 7 investigators at church, which was another new record for me -- I couldn't believe it! hah :)

I hope you're all doing well! Have a wonderful week! Sorry this is so short!

Elder Canto

Monday, June 22, 2015

São João is here!

This holiday is a month long in Campina Grande.. luckily, it's only about a week long, here! Anyways--

Hi everyone!

Things are going well here for Elder Buechele and I -- we have transfers in one week, and he is probably going to be transferred.. sadly :/ But, maybe we'll get lucky, and he'll be able to stay for a fifth transfer! Him and I are both fine with the idea of staying here until November -- that would be great! We love it here! But, it is very unlikely.. hah

We went to the only McDonalds that I know of around here on Wednesday, and bought Angus Bacon burgers, with fries and Guarana (a soda they have here). The burger seemed very salty for some resaon.. It was pretty good, though. It was R$25,00, which is about.. $8 USD.. maybe a little bit more expensive than normal.

On Thursday, I went on an exchange with Elder Costa, my district leader's companion, in my old area, Geisel, and we visited an old investigator of mine -- Daniel -- around 8pm. He was very surprised to see me, and him and his mom were very happy :D She made dinner for us, too! They took some pictures with us, and we talked a bit, and then went home. It was so nice to see them again, after almost a year! I am extremely grateful for all of the friends that I've made here while serving my mission. I love Brazilians! :D (the nice ones, anyways -- haha!) I also got caught in the rain, and so I have a cold now. :S

On Friday night, we went to a party to celebrate São João at the church, and everyone was wearing plaid (sp?) shirts, and jeans, and straw hats, and they had all sorts of food made from corn.. hah -- My companion made chocolate-chip oatmeal cookies, to be different from the corn theme, and about 20 people have asked him for the recipe since then. People don't bake here.. it's weird! They only make cakes, for the most part, as far as baking goes. By the way, if there are any random "a"s in this email, it's because the 'a' key keeps sticking.

Yesterday (Sunday), we brought a 77 year-old woman to church, and she said that she felt different there than in any other church she'd ever visited, and she expressed a great desire to be baptized, so we marked her baptism for next Sunday, the 28th! :) We're working with a 16 year-old boy as well, and a 17 year-old girl (who has a 1 or 2 year-old son), and we also marked a date for one of the ward members to marry the woman that he is living with (August 1st), so that she can be baptized (on August 2nd). We're working with some other people as well, but these 4 people are the ones who are progressing the most. We talked to the boy's dad last week, after he had gone to church, and he said that he'd been telling him "Dad! I really liked going to church there today!". We're having a bit of trouble with visiting some of our investigators, who are home only at night, when we usually have lots of things marked (between 6pm and 9pm), but.. hopefully we can plan well enough to be able to visit them this week!

I hope that you all have a great week! :)


Elder Canto

P.S. Happy Father's Day, to you fathers! And of course, Feliz São João!


People attacking my companion for his cookies

Ward cleaning on Saturday

Monday, June 1, 2015

A New Month

Well, June is officially here! Last month was pretty great -- first, we had the baptism of a 24 year-old girl, who'd been investigating since September, and then on the 30th, we had the baptisms of two 9 year-old boys, whose parents are members, and went out for pizza afterwards at a restaurant called "Arte da China" with one of the boy's families.

Yesterday, a new Ward Mission Leader was called, and he must be retired or something, because we had a meeting with him right after church, and I was like "So when are you free?" and he was like "When am I free? Let me see.. all day, every day!" haha! That's a nice change! Our previous Ward Mission Leader was busy all day, every day! We didn't have a single meeting with him in the past 3 months! Now that we have someone who can actually go out with us and visit people, things are really going to be different! I'm excited for this month now.

What's interesting, is that a new Ward Mission Leader was called in the ward that Alissa is serving in yesterday, too, and, that after the baptism on the 30th here, there was also a wedding at 7pm at the church, just like there was after the baptism of her investigator 2 weeks ago! Parallels.. weird..

Anyways! Um.. what else.. We taught a lady who is Atheist about 2 weeks ago, and that was an interesting experience! Just about everyone here has a belief in God and Jesus Christ.. so it's pretty uncommon to find someone who doesn't believe in them! That was only my 2nd encounter on my mission with an Atheist, and it was very different teaching her. We taught about The Book of Mormon not with the usual aim to show that the church is true, but with the aim to show that Jesus Christ really was the Son of God, and not just a regular person, and that God exists.

She'd said that she used to believe in God, but then she felt like He stopped answering her prayers, and so I feel like she is just kinda mad at Him -- but she said she doesn't believe in Him. I asked her if she knew the answer to the question "Why do bad things happen to good people?" and she said "Right? Good question. What do you think?" and then I shared this scripture with her (from The Book of Mormon), which Alissa had showed to me at one point in 2013, which I have really come to appreciate during my mission:

Mosiah 3:7
"And lo, he shall suffer temptations, and pain of body, hunger, thirst, and fatigue, even more than man can suffer, except it be unto death; for behold, blood cometh from every pore, so great shall be his anguish for the wickedness and the abominations of his people."

This scripture talks about Jesus Christ and what He went through here on the earth for us. Jesus Christ is definitely one of the best people who ever lived here on the earth, and He went through all of these terrible things! He suffered physically, and especially, spiritually, when he performed the Atoning Sacrifice, and then was crucified.

God doesn't let us suffer because he doesn't love us, or anything like that -- He lets us suffer, and have hardships, and struggles, because we need to have both negative and positive experiences in this life to truly learn the things that we need to. If life were just pure happiness, we wouldn't really learn much, now would we?

After I shared that scripture, a few minutes later, she said that because of that scripture, she became interested in reading The Book of Mormon, and that she's going to read it. I hope that reading The Book of Mormon can help her get her faith in God and Jesus Christ back!

Well, I've got to go now. I hope you all have a great week!

Feel free to email me with any questions or comments, or just to say hi! :)

Elder Canto

Photo from the baptism on May 30th

I love this family!

Photo from the baptism in early May -- not sure how the left side is blurry and not the right side.. maybe we were moving when they took this picture

Monday, May 11, 2015

A Long Week...

Hi everyone,

My companion and I were sick this week, both of us with the same sickness, and so we had the same symptoms every day.. it's been an adventure! On Monday and Tuesday, until Wednesday afternoon, we both had fevers and headaches, and we went to the hospital on Wednesday, when we got these red spots everywhere that were itchy. They drew blood for a blood test, and diagnosed both of us with Dengue. I thought this was round 2 for me, but then, we went back for a follow-up visit on Friday, and they did another blood test, and said that it wasn't Dengue, but it was an unidentified virus that has been going around here, which is like Dengue, but a bit weaker. I think that I'm basically fully recovered today, after the 2-3 days of rest recommended by the doctor, and so hopefully we can work this week. They also said to drink 4-5 liters of water per day, which, I discovered, is no joke! It felt like I was drinking water like it was my job! XD Also, since Thursday, we've both gotten tired really easily, and had to rest a lot. All of our numbers for lessons taught and everything were 0 this week.. imagine that! I miss my investigators.. DX hah

Hopefully, this week will be better, and we're done with this "unidentified virus".. I'm still kinda itchy though.. and tired.. but.. we'll see.

I was able to talk with my family on Skype last night, for Mother's Day, and it was really nice to see everyone again! It's hard to believe that the next time I see them, it'll be in person! I'm looking forward to that. :)

Well, I'm going to go rest a bit more, and hopefully I can go out and work at 6pm tonight!

I hope that you're all in better health than I am! haha! Have a good week.

Elder Canto

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Monday, May 4, 2015

May the Fourth be with you..

I thought I'd steal Alissa's subject line here.. :D

Hi everyone! So Alissa and I have decided to move our wedding date to December 5th, 2015, since that's a Saturday, and it'll be easier for people to make it, we hope! Please email me to let me know if you're planning on going, whoever is reading this! (just so I'll know :]) We'll be getting married in the Seattle, WA temple. It's going to be awesome! :)

I officially have been on my mission for 17 months today, and I have 6 months left.. it's crazy how the time has flown by.. I'll be talking to my family on Skype on Mother's Day, for the last time before I go home, and I'm looking forward to that! It's only twice a year that we get to do that! I'll be flying in to the SEA-TAC airport on November 5th or 6th, and going to NY after getting married.

We'll be having a zone conference tomorrow with 5/7 of the zones in my mission, so that should be great, and I'll get to see some of my friends!

I was super tired this week, along with my companion, and our 2 new Brazilian roommates, since we spent our whole P-Day moving furniture and cleaning.. but, hopefully this week will be different, since today is going to be more relaxed. haha

I wonder how my brother feels about Alissa and I getting married on his birthday.. XD

Anyways, have a great week, everyone! Don't forget to pray and read the scriptures daily! God didn't give us the scriptures to keep them on a shelf, but, He gave them to us for us to read and study them! The more good things that you fill your life with, the less likely you are to have bad things in your life.

By the way, I was thinking about 3 questions this week:

1) Do I want to return to live with God in His kingdom after this life?
(to which I answered yes)

2) Am I ready/willing to do everything that I need to in order to receive this great blessing?

3) What do I need to change/do in order to qualify for this great blessing?

I promise you, you won't regret doing this! God has asked us to keep His commandments, have faith in Jesus Christ, repent of our sins, be baptized, be born of the Spirit (John 3:5), and endure to the end. Whatever you need to change, change it, ASAP! This life is the time for us to prepare to meet God, and we should not procrastinate the day of our repentance! Also, Jesus Christ will come again, and He will come when no one is expecting it, so we need to always be clean/free of our sins, and be ready, and watching, and waiting, for when He does come again! And by doing this, we will be blessed, and we can rest easier. :)

I love each of you! Have a great week! Happy Mother's Day, to all of you wonderful mothers! Especially you, Mom! :D

Elder Canto

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Monday, April 27, 2015

Moving Day!

Today, we spent all day, (7:30am to 4pm), moving to the other elders' apartment, in our complex. We had to go down from the 3rd floor, and then up to the 2nd floor, over and over and over.. hah. I'm tired!

This weekend was stake conference, and I got to see a lot of people from Geisel and Mangabeira II, which was awesome. :) It was really great! This past week, I started learning how to play a song on the piano, and it's frustrating at times, but I'm getting there! I love playing the piano!

Our investigator is going to be baptized this Saturday, who's been investigating the church since September of 2014. It's going to be great :D

I'm doing great here in Cidade Jardim, and getting to know the members really well. It's been awesome teaching them the missionary lessons so far. We taught the Restoration a bunch, and now we're going to be teaching The Plan of Salvation. We've become professionals at teaching the Restoration, hah. We've watched the Restoration DVD like 12 times now in the past 2-3 weeks, and we keep finding symbolism in the different scenes. I love that movie, every time! Well, it's actually like 19 minutes long.. but yeah.. I love it! I'm still not tired of it.

So yeah, I'll be living with 2 Brazilians now -- Elder Foragi, and Elder Ribeiro, and my companion, who's from Texas -- Elder Buechele. It should be nice. We switched to the other side of the building, so now, we can see the church, and we have a nice breeze! And, we each have our own bed now, instead of a bunk bed. We had to clean the apartment a ton, and we threw a way a ton of church magazines and manuals that were just sitting around for a really long time, and nobody was using. I hate to throw these things away, but.. there comes a point, where.. there's just no point to having them! Too many! hah

Anyways, I need to get going now, but, I love each of you, and I hope that you are all well! I am always praying for you, and I thank those of you who are praying for me, as well!

Have a great week!

Elder Canto

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Monday, April 6, 2015

Transfers next week! Happy Easter!

Hey everyone, next Wednesday is transfers, so I'll be emailing on Wednesday, and not Monday. We had a baptism on Saturday, and it was great! I love being a missionary, and having so many opportunities to help people. It is truly a blessing to see how the gospel changes people's lives. I learned a lot from General Conference this week, and I am going to continue listening to the talks again, and I invite you all to do the same!

Have a wonderful week. I love each of you! Happy Easter!

Elder Canto

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Monday, March 16, 2015

I'm keeping my promise! I'm sending photos! haha

Elder Buechele (my companion) and I on our 3rd floor balcony
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My new daily planner covers (I do this just about every transfer)

First-person shooter.. with the bee that Alissa sent me.. haha! I'm addicted to video games.. okay?
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The bee and I :P
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Have a great week, everyone! :)

Elder Canto

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Monday, March 9, 2015

Magical Flying Ants

Hey everyone! This week was pretty great, and my companion, Elder Buechele, is awesome! I got a bit more familiar with the area this week, but I'm still basically lost 90% of the time that we're out on the streets. Yesterday it rained a ton, and the magical flying ants made their return once again! When it rains, the ants grow wings and start flying everywhere, since they have no idea how to fly.. it's really obnoxious! They were inside people's homes, and the church, and so we had to be a bit careful to avoid them.. hah

I was playing chess with my companion and.. he's way better than me -__- I decided to quit playing. haha

I like my new apartment, and it's actually really awesome living with just one other person! It's a bit more peaceful, and you don't have to clean as much, or wait to use the bathroom. It's nice. I really like having an American companion, because I can speak English, which.. is just easier. haha

I'm excited for General Conference, which is coming up in a little less than a month, and the end of Summer! Which is March 21st. Although.. Summer or not, it's still really hot here.. so.. I don't really know why I'm excited about that! XD

I hope that each of you are having a great 2015, and doing good things. Feel free to respond to this email if you would like to ask me anything or just say hi! I would love that! haha :)

Have a wonderful week! I'll try and take some pictures to send this week.. maybe.. o.O

Elder Canto

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Wednesday, March 4, 2015


Hey everyone!

I was transferred to a new area, Cidade Jardim (Garden City), today. My new companion... is my best friend in the mission! Basically.. hah -- I am really excited for this transfer. I've been living with just Brazilians ever since last July, bascially, and now, I'm finally back with Americans. XD There were 2 companionships here until today, and now it's just my companion and I. We have a pretty big apartment, all to ourselves! It's weird.. we've only been there for about 30 minutes today, but, I never imagined that I'd be living alone with one of my companions! It's definitely a good thing that we're good friends, since it'll just be us! There is a chance that the neighboring area, Rangel, will be moving in with us, since there is only one companionship there now, too. They live in the same apartment complex as us, but in a different building. What's funny, is that Elder Buechele's companion was transferred from Cidade Jardim to Rangel today, so he just switched buildings.. haha! Longest. Transfer. Ever. ...not really.

Anyways, I'm extremely happy, and I would love to write more, but I need to go now! I apologize to those who emailed me this week, and I didn't respond -- I was moving files around on my USB drives and my camera.. so yeah.. sorry! I'll be emailing again on Monday though, and I'll respond then!

I love each of you! Have a great week!

Elder Canto

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Monday, February 23, 2015

Hey everyone, heads up!

I won't be able to email until Wednesday next week, since we have transfers. I'm expecting to be transferred, since we generally don't stay more than 3 transfers in the same area, and this is my 3rd transfer (the one that I'm in right now), which will be ending on March 4th.

I've had a great time here in Mangabeira 2.1, and I love the ward that I'm serving in! Lots of great memories here, and lots of friends made. :) Whether or not I am transferred on the 4th, I'll be happy.

Oh so unfortunately, the baptism that we had marked for the 22nd fell through.. but.. it was remarked for March, likely after I leave this area.. I'm happy that it was remarked, and not canceled! We're going to help the boy's mom become active in the church again this week -- she hasn't been in 20 years, like I mentioned last week! She will be a much better support for her son, if she is active in the church herself!

Anyways, I need to get going, but, I hope that you all have a wonderful week. :) Seek for opportunities to share the gospel with others! The world will be a better place if everyone does this!


Elder Canto

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Monday, February 16, 2015


This week is Carnaval, which is the Brazilian holiday that's like Mardi-Gras, and so basically half of the members in my ward here weren't there yesterday! Exciting, right? Also, it was a bit of a challenge to find a LAN house that was open today -- but, we found one. (obviously, otherwise I wouldn't be writing this!) I got a package from Alissa for Valentine's Day, which I opened on Saturday, and it was awesome! She sent me a bunch of candy, and a card, and a letter, and 11 pages about things that she's learned on her mission so far -- it was awesome! I don't know how I'm going to compete with this.. haha

We've been teaching a 13 year-old boy this past week, and he went to church with us yesterday. He's really awesome! We set a goal with him to be baptized on the 22nd (next Sunday), and he accepted, so we're going to be teaching him a lot this week. His mom is a less-active member, who was baptized when she was 16, but then when she was 19, she moved to another state, and there wasn't a church there, so she stopped going. It's been 20 years since she's been to church now, but she's going to start going again. :D I'm excited for her and her son and the decisions they're making. I hope that all will go well!

On Tuesday, we had what's called a Mission Tour, where an Area Seventy (Elder Granja) and his wife came and spoke to us. It was really awesome. I talked with him afterwards and he said that there's a beach in Brazil called "Canto Beach". :D haha -- my name is everywhere here! In church hymns, names of stores.. it's funny. Canto means "corner" or "place" (in a sense), also, "song", and "I sing". So yeah.. that's why.

Anyways, sorry that this is short, but, I need to get going now. I'm not very good at being consistent with these updates, I know.. I'm sorry!

I hope that you're all doing well! Feel free to respond to this message and I will respond to you also. :D If you're not wanting to receive more updates from me, just let me know, and I will remove you from the list of recipients!

Have a great week, everyone!

I love each of you!

Elder Canto

NOTICE: This email message is for the sole use of the intended recipient(s) and may contain confidential and privileged information. Any unauthorized review, use, disclosure or distribution is prohibited. If you are not the intended recipient, please contact the sender by reply email and destroy all copies of the original message.

Monday, January 26, 2015

Another Baptism! :)

We had another baptism yesterday! It was a guy named Eugenio who is 17 years old. The baptismal service was really great, and I felt the Spirit really strongly, as I usually do at baptisms! I love going to baptisms, and watching people make the decision to promise to God that they will keep His commandments, and take the name of Jesus Christ upon them, and be an example to others, and serve others. It is so amazing. Eugenio bore his testimony after being baptized, and he said that he thought that 2 weeks was really fast when we made the goal with him, but we were teaching him, and he was reading The Book of Mormon, and doing a lot of pondering, and he received an answer to his prayers, that the church, and The Book of Mormon, are true, and also, he said "If Jesus Christ, our Savior, went through all of the horrible things that He went through, and suffered so much, for us, how can we not do this simple act of being baptized, that He has asked us to do, to thank Him?" I'll be honest, when he said that, I started crying. It's true.. how could we not do the things He asked us to do, when He gave his LIFE for us? He loves us, and He gave us the opportunity to receive forgiveness for our sins, and return to live with our Heavenly Father again, and our families, for eternity, after this life. We just need to do the things that He has asked of us! Have faith in Him, repent of our sins, be baptized by someone who has the authority to do so, receive the gift of the Holy Ghost, and endure to the end. Live the gospel, basically. It's not a lot that He has asked of us! I know that as we seek to live the gospel and follow Christ's example, that we can be cleaned of our sins, and return to God's presence after this life. I love the gospel, and I love this church.

Have a great week, everyone!

P.S. Last week was transfers, and I stayed with Elder Wellington again, and we're still in Mangabeira II. It's great here! We made a Ward Mission Plan yesterday with our new Ward Mission Leader, and we're super excited. We have another baptism set for next Sunday, too! :)

I love each of you!

Elder Canto

Brida's baptism (last week)Inline image 2
Eugenio's baptism (yesterday)
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Monday, January 12, 2015

Did I ever mention how hot it is here?

Hi everyone! I just got back from a 3-4 hour hike to the beach and back. It was pretty awesome. We weren't originally planning on going to the beach.. our plan was just to follow this trail that goes really far into our area and then come back, like we accidentally did on Thursday, out of curiosity, but then, since we were already fairly close, we decided to continue to the beach. I'm.. pretty sure that it's not outside of our area.. we aren't allowed to leave our areas without permission from our mission president, President Nogueira. Imagine being stuck in your city/town, and not being able to watch TV, listen to music, use a computer, or a cell phone, or anything. All of the things that I just listed are part of life as a missionary. haha -- entertainment is basically not allowed. But, I love being a missionary! The feeling that I get when I'm teaching someone or serving someone, there just isn't anything quite like it.

We had a baptism yesterday! The girl who was baptized is 9 years old, and she is a recent-convert's daughter. The baptismal service went really well, and there were 30+ people there! It's always a great experience. It was interesting, teaching a 9 year old. I enjoyed it. :)

A few days ago, a member said -- wait a second.. HAHA the song that the LAN house is playing right now is "What Does the Fox Say?" XD oh man.. haha!

So anyways.. I got distracted for a second there XD -- a few days ago, a member mentioned how on his mission, basically all of the people who he baptized had family members who are members, or were people he found through referrals from members. Only 1 family that he baptized was a family he found through doing street contacts and knocking on doors. I started to think a bit, and I realized that the same is true for me! I've only baptized one person whom I found by doing street contacts. I think maybe I need to change my focus a little bit here.. I'll have to start asking church members for some more help in finding people to teach. To whom it applies, give referrals to the missionaries in your ward! And don't just pass their information to the missionaries, but actually follow-up with them, and help them to set up a time to meet with the person/people, and go and visit them with the missionaries! This helps a ton! And don't be afraid to invite people to church! You don't need to feel bad for inviting someone to learn about the gospel! There is really nothing better that you could invite someone to do! :) Imagine, if Joseph Smith had said nothing about his vision.. the church wouldn't even be here today! You need to open your mouth and share the gospel. If you don't, you are denying people the opportunity to live with God in the Celestial Kingdom after this life. Share the gospel -- please! People need to hear your testimony! I promise that as you seek to do this, your testimony will grow and you will be blessed for doing so. Don't be ashamed of your beliefs. :)

I love you all, and I hope that you have a great week! :)

I'll be emailing on Wednesday next week, since we have transfers on January 21st.

Elder Canto

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