Monday, December 7, 2015

Temples, temples everywhere! :)

I don't have a ton of time for email. We were tricksy today and we printed off all our emails at the capela so that we could read them and have more time to write. So tricksy we are. :)

This was a good week. It was definitely one of the best weeks of my mission. I have felt the Spirit so strongly this week and we were blessed with some of the most wonderful opportunities this week. 

We had a great p-day last week. We went down to Nazaré for p-day and we saw the Atlantic Ocean. I nearly cried. It was so much fun and when you're out in nature there's just a cool spirit when you think of all of Heavenly Father's creations. We had fun. I have a bag of sand and seashells that I saved... of course. :) 

On Tuesday our ward mission leader found out that I studied Landscape Design before the mission and I scored some pretty big brownie points with him. He's an architect so he had a ton of fun showing us his yard and his garden and his chickens. He really likes us and now we're able to get his help with our investigators. We had a lot of fun at our Correlation meeting. Right after correlation Sister Larson and I caught a bus to Coimbra because on Wednesday we had a zone meeting, but we had to go early and plan it with the zone leaders in Coimbra. It was one of the best zone meetings I've ever had. We played the hot and cold game with a twist to teach us about listening to the Spirit. We had little candies hidden, but we also had a big candy bar hidden but only one missionary knew about it and he was giving directions for it. Most people thought that Elder Crist was crazy, but in the end one sister decided to follow his directions and she ended up getting the candy bar. Then we got super profound and we had a great discussion about following the Spirit to find the people who are truly prepared and waiting for the gospel. It was really good. 

After the zone meeting I got to play "Sister Training Leader" with Sister Larson and Sister Campos in Santarém. There are three sisters serving together so I went with them and I did a division with Sister Eusébio! It was the best division of my entire mission. We we're having so much fun together and it was so nice to just catch up and work normally during a division. Santarém is so beautiful and I felt really comfortable and I felt like I was supposed to be there at that time. Thursday Sister Eusébio and I were in the road and I just felt like I needed to stop this girl and as we started talking to her she told us that she has always wanted to go to the capela but that her dad hates religion. She said that she would sneak out Sunday morning and go to church because she just wants to know what it is we do. It was really cool and we testified that she was special to Heavenly Father and that He had a plan for her. When we said that she got the biggest smile and told us, " I hope so. That would be nice." It was so cool.

The best part about the week though was that we were able to watch the groundbreaking for the temple in Lisboa on Saturday. There was a very special spirit in the chapel as we watched. Sister Larson and I cried... a lot. During that ceremony the chapel became almost like a part of the temple. I haven't felt that way in almost a year. I have missed the temple so much in the last year, and to feel that spirit and that feeling of the temple again was so special. That's really just what it feels like to feel the love Heavenly Father has for us. President and Sister Kearon from the area presidency spoke and President Kearon said that he felt as if he was drinking from a well that he did not dig. I feel that way a lot. I think about all the sacrifices that other people have made for me and for the people here in Portugal and sometimes I don't understand why it is that I get to be here right now, having all these experiences and receiving all these blessings. I really am so grateful for it though. 

On Sunday we went to the Stake Presidente's house and he showed us the Coimbra Stake shovel from the groundbreaking ceremony on Saturday. We felt pretty spiffy getting to hold the shovel. :)

We finally got in touch with our marcada again! Hooray! And her brother will be coming form Brasil on the 18th of dezembro so we're going to get the baptism all planned with him. It's going to be really special. :)

I love you all! Remember to read in the Book of Mormon. I was reading in Ether this morning and I decided that all those problems in the Book of Ether could have been avoided if they had lived by the principles taught in the Family Proclamation to the World... yup. It solves lots of problems... so go tell all your mothers that you love them. :)

Amo vos muito e fico me tão feliz quando eu penso sobre todo o amor e apoio que recebo de vocês. Obrigada por tudo e lembrem se que Jesus Cristo vive e que Ele nos ama. Ele é o nosso Salvador e ele é a razão que nós temos Natal. :)

Com amor,

Síster Smith


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