Monday, June 29, 2015

Divisions, A Baptism, and 17 Member Present Lessons.... I'm a Little Tired!

Olá Família!
First off........HAPPY BIRTHDAY EVA!!!!!!!!! I’m really glad that everything worked out for the family this week and everything went smooth! It seems like yesterday that I was hearing that this whole move was going to happen but really it was 5 months ago...anyway...weird!
WHAT A WEEK!!!!! WE HAD A BAPTISM!!!!!!!!! Literally so busy and I’m exhausted! 
We had divisions this week, which was sooo fun! Sister Schill and Sister Jones are the tallest sisters! So I felt right at home with them! Walking down the street was awesome! I got some of the weirdest looks, but I’m pretty sure that if we invited them to be baptized they’d say yes just out of fear. Literally, we showed Christ loud and proud that day! It felt so good! We saw lots of miracles happen on that day. While Sister Jones and I were meeting with our appointments, Sister Elliott and Sister Schill had marked a person for baptism and talked about baptism with another one of our investigators! And then to end the night we ate ice cream and Pão de Queijo! Couldn’t get better than that! 
Practically everyday this week we met with one of our investigators, Ildo. He had an accident with his motorcycle and was in a coma for 3 months. He’s very lucky to be alive right now. But he went to a doctor in Cuba and they woke up half his body so half of his body is working! He’s going to go back to Cuba to have the other half done too. But we saw him everyday and taught him. He LOVES the Book of Mormon. We read with him and explained about church and baptism. He especially likes the sacrament part of baptism and church. He is one of the most humble people I’ve met, and has the biggest testimony of Faith and Christ. He has a desire to be baptized so we marked him for the 8th of August but he needs to be married. But truly he has found so much happiness from what we’re taught. 
These past 3 days our Sister Training Leaders had a goal for the 5 duplas of sisters to get 31 lessons in 3 days. We made a promise to get 10 lessons with members present and we made our goal the first night at 9:30
We met with Carla (our new recent convert..awww she’s so cute!!!) at her house with our ward mission leader and she bore her testimony and wow. She’s amazing!! She’s going to affect the lives of so many people on her mission. I almost wanted to start crying. I couldn’t believe that I had the opportunity to be the sister to teach her. She had such a strong desire to be a member and to be baptized! Her baptism was nuts though!!!
So on Friday she had her interview with Elder Neighbor and that all went well, but after that, everything just fell apart. Satan really didn’t want to have this baptism. So we started on her baptismal program and saved it so we could print it the next morning before the baptism. So we left and had to track down one of the members that would give a talk. We ended up not being able to find him but then running into the Elders. The Elders said that the printer didn’t have ink and that we needed to turn on the baptismal font the night before seeing as how the baptism was in the morning. There would be no way to have the font ready before her baptism and we couldn’t walk to the chapel and be back in our house before the time we needed to. So we called our ward mission leader and he was going to print it for us but when we got there really really early the next day to turn on the font, our program was gone. Oh and the font had been turned on already. So we had only gotten about 5 hours of sleep the night before. So we quickly got the program sent to Luis. The only 2 people that Carla wanted at her baptism didn’t show up which was sooo sad. She was so upset. (I ended up playing the music too, and the missionaries did a musical hymn number, it was amazing!!!) Then the baptism was done and we waited till the font drained. We went about our day and worked really hard with smiles on our faces because we had a baptism!!! But then bishop called and got after me because he didn’t say the name completely. So we had to redue the baptism. Again there was no way the font would be filled in 2 hours...So we planned for her to be baptized right before church.... Now it’s Sunday. We get there at 8 with the elders and we waited...and waited some more...and the 2 people she wanted at her baptism came!!!!! Then Carla came at 8:30 and then I asked who was doing the baptism and the counselor in the bishopric said that an Elder needed to do the baptism. So they had to run to their house to get their clothes. So the baptism was finally done at 8:47 and church started at 9 and now Carla is a member of the church!!!! Talk about crazy!!!! 
So with divisions, a baptism, and 10 member present lessons in 3 days, I’m a little tired. But Holy Cow was this a great week. I’m so grateful for the things I’ve learned and the help of the Lord. We couldn’t have done it without His help and His hand. I’m so grateful for this gospel and the opportunity that I have to be here. It’s official, I will be in the Porto Mission, and I couldn’t be happier. I love this work so much and am so grateful for Sister Elliott. She’s a hard worker and we’re on the same page almost always. It’s actually really weird how well we get along. We know each other so well and I love it. I hope you all have the happiest 4th of July! Matosinhos will actually be having a party on the 4th and us missionaries will be having a party as well together!! It’ll be amazing!! Love you all so much!!!
Sister Hillam

Sister Elliott and Eu!

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Miracles after Miracles! Oh and Happy 6 Months on the Mission!

Qurida Familia!!

Wow. What a week!! Sorry, I really don’t have much time to write because we had a conference with President Fluckiger today to say goodbye. Of course I cried like a baby and all I could think about were grandma and grandpa ending the mission in Portugal. I’m so blessed to have grandparents like that because I know the missionary I want to be or my mission president. But anyway! Glad you all are okay! I pray for you all so much!!! 
Where to start...Well we met with a man named Ildo and taught the plan of salvation in English because he doesn’t understand Portuguese very well and gave him the Book of Mormon in English. He told us he would read and that our lesson totally made sense and loves us a ton! His girlfriend and him want us to come by more often. They need to get married but they have a desire to be together forever! I have pictures and if I have time, I’ll try and send some! This week we also had a girl ask for a blessing. She had a stroke a few years ago so she can’t really converse with us but she understands everything we say. She actually told us she wants to go to church and get baptized!!!! Such a miracle! But when we called her sister, she told us that she couldn’t go to church even though we had a ride for her. It was so annoying. We got inside the apartment building, which in and of itself is a miracle!!! Then we sat at her door for 5 minutes waiting. talk about annoying. But she has a huge desire to get baptized!!

Also, I celebrated 6 months on the year, exactly from today I will be home. WHAT THE?!? Yeah... Thank you District Leader for telling me. I don’t know where the time went!!

Then on Thursday we had this lesson with a girl named Carla, Flauvio, and our member Pedro. They are friends of Pedro and I don’t know if I’ve already told you about them. But we ended up splitting ~the lesson and Sister Elliott taught Flauvio and I taught Carla. We didn’t mean to but Carla didn’t want to talk to anyone else but me. After the lesson I asked her if she wanted to be baptized and she said yes!!!! And what’s more is that SHE WANTS TO BE A MISSIONARY!!!!! She’s already talked to her mom about serving and how she’s going to pay for it!! Literally she told us she was living the law of chastity, she doesn’t smoke of anything, she wants to do the work for her dad in the temple, and she wants to be a member! She’s getting baptized on Saturday! I couldn´t believe it. She’s amazing. Miracles are happening everyday!!!!

And then on Sunday one of investigators Elisabete started crying about her dad and said she felt so good at church and that she felt him close. This week is a huge testimony that the church is true and no one can stop the work! This work rocks. I can’t believe I was chosen to serve, and see these miracles. I can’t believe the Lord is using me and letting me see these miracles and help these people. Truly this whole week was Him. I merely was just there and he did the rest. I love this work so much.  I love you all so much. Thank you for your support and love. I couldn’t have asked for a better family!!

Sister Hillam

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

What Happened to the First Part of June?

Hello Familia!!

So this week was nuts! First off, I can see now that I know the language better than I thought. I started to talk to somebody without even thinking about it. I’m so grateful for this!!! I really saw this week that I grew a lot last transfer. Wow. I could not believe it. Still have more I need to learn! So on Monday when we got back to Matosinhos we actually ran into one of our members Pedro and he gave us like 3 references! It was so awesome! Our members here are incredible and I can’t wait to come home and help the missionaries in our stake/ward! 
Wednesday we met with Elisabete, Andre, Brandão, and Albertina. They’re all investigators and we were able to talk to all of them that day. I can’t wait to see them progress more. They’re all really new to the gospel so we’re helping them progress. I love the spirit so much and the power that we have to testify of the truth. They were all really receptive to the spirit and to our message. I can’t wait to acompanhar with them!!! Also we visited one of the families in our ward and they made us this cheese bread but not just any cheese bread. They took out the middle and mixed cheese with mayonnaise some spices and then they put that in the bread. Let it bake for a little bit and then we ate this soup of cheese and bread. It was amazing! 

Thursday we had zone conference and guess who’s in my zone...SISTER ROVIG!!! WOOT WOOT!! It was sooo fun!!!! I love being surrounded by missionaries and the spirit that they all bring. Literally I could have stayed and practiced all the lessons with them for a week. We have great things a head for this mission and for our area. I think everyone in our zone thinks that we’re going to struggle in our area because we have a 3rd transfer and a 4th transfer missionary in the same area, but oh are they wrong! I love Sister Elliott so much. She wants to work so hard and this is exactly what I wanted!!! Oh my goodness it feels so good to put every ounce of energy on the streets and come home exhausted! After zone conference we had lots of ideas of how we can help our area and help our dupla grow more.

So Friday we got a call from one of our past investigators and she wanted to talk to us! We were supposed to be doing weekly planning but she could only see us during weekly planning. The spirit was soooooo strong during that lesson!!!! Oh my goodness. She would have accept every invite that we gave her but then I thought, `wait, we can’t invite her to do everything right steps sister hillam, baby steps...`man I just wanted to baptize her right then and there! she’s now a progressing investigator!! It was amazing! The Elders also called us that morning and said that we were going to have a competition to see who could get the most contacts. We tied with 45 each dupla! It was awesome! We also had a family tell us that Sister Elliott is 24 with lots of wisdom and that I’m a little bit less mature...that’s the first time I’ve ever gotten that before...ha-ha

On Saturday Pedro (member) called us and planned for us to teach the references. We ended up teaching 3 of his friends Carla, Daniela, and Flavio. We taught the 2nd lesson because Carla’s dad passed away and during the lesson Carla started crying and Flavio wanted to know more about after this life. The Lord is pouring his blessing on us. He is literally putting His children into our hands to help. I love this calling so much. (You know, it’s the only calling that you actually sign that is your calling?) 

On Sunday we had Elder Moreira come for a conference. WOW. I took 3 pages of notes and I can’t even begin to tell you what the spirit was saying. He basically started out by saying that he had no notes and nothing with him but the spirit and the scriptures and he opened it up for questions. The first thing that he talked about was leaving your comfort zone. Leave the boat and have faith to walk on the water. He said to be submissive and obedient to the will of the Lord. Only through experiences and the attitude with those experiences are we going to grow and be everything we can become. He was a mission president in São Paulo and he talked a lot about missionaries. He said that the worst thing is when missionaries come into the field with low self-esteem. Because if they aren’t comfortable with themselves, how can they be comfortable with others? We have to beat ourselves because it’s only then can we humble ourselves and submit our will to the Lord. This life is not easy but as soon as we do it the Lord way, everything falls into place. There are no Coincidences!!!!!! 

I celebrate 6 months on the mission in 2 days. I can’t believe it. It’s going by so fast. This time next year I’ll be home. I love the mission. Fetch I have no idea what people say but I laugh all the time and the people that do want to listen are so elect. I can’t believe it. It’s just incredible! I love you all soooo much!!!!! 

Sister Hillam

Monday, June 8, 2015

Adventure is out there... in the PORTO MISSION!

Dearest Family!
So this week was nuts!!!! Last P-day Sister Andrade and I sat in the Chapel for a long time so that she could re-due her hair and I sat and watched the whole thing. It was awesome! Ha-ha
We got a call during District Meeting from Sister Fluckiger that we would visit the hospital on Tuesday for Sister Andrade´s stomach. So we went there and got a paper so she could schedule an appointment.
Wednesday we went in for the scheduled appointment for Sister Andrade and waited in the hospital for a while.
One of our recent converts has been having the hardest time with the decision to stay in Matosinhos or move and when we visited her, we read from the scriptures. What was so cool was right before we prayed and all of our books were closed. But before we prayed I found a scripture in Doctrine and Covenants 58:3-4. After the prayer she opened up to a random scripture and guess which one she opened up to?? D&C 58:3-4. It was such a testimony to me. She started to cry and I was tearing up as well. No one knew why but I knew why. Man this gospel rocks!!! 
Also, we met with another one of our investigators on the road that we had lost! Delfina doesn’t have a phone and she’s really hard to track down because she’s this little old lady that’s super cute! So we found her and taught her a little bit and she also came to church. It was such a miracle that she came to church! That same day we had a lesson with out eternigator Elisabet. We had received revelation that our purpose for this lesson was to mark her for baptism for this past Saturday. We called the Elders to give us blessings and to give her a blessing as well. When we got there one of the Elders created a goal for her to stop smoking in 2 months. It was so interesting. I learned that this situation was like Abraham and Isaac. We went with our purpose and went forward with the revelation that we received. I can say that when the spirit tells us something, we need to do it. That was such a testimony to me that the Lord can trust us to follow His promptings. 
All right, so transfers happened!!! I´M IN THE PORTO MISSION FOR SURE!!!!!!!! Sister Andrade is going to Olhao!!!!!!!!! I COULDN´T BELIEVE IT!!!!! She’s going to be finishing the training of my trainer’s trainee!!! Literally this is so crazy!! I met Sister Jarnigan at the bus station today and she’ll be in the Lisbon mission and I also met with Sister Rovig who will be in the Porto mission with me!!!! I could not believe how small this world is! Sister Rovig is actually in my same zone! Oh my companion is Sister Elliott from California! She has 4 months on the mission and I have almost 6. haha she ended her training and now she’s with me in Matosinhos!!! Such a weird transfer!! So that was my crazy week haha I’m so grateful for every single one of you. I love our family so much and pray for you often. I know that the Lord answers our prayers. I know He loves us.
I’m so thankful for the past transfers that I had with Sister Andrade and I look forward to this next transfer with Sister Elliott!! Love you!!!
Sister Hillam

Sister Andrade and me!

My new glasses!


Sister Jarnigan!!!!!

Tuesday, June 2, 2015

Week of Birthdays!!


Querida Familía!!
So this week is not transfers but next week is. I can’t decide if I’m excited or nervous...vamos ver! but this week was great for the most part. We ate in the members’ houses quite a bit and that was stellar!!
 We helped a member in our ward move salons. It was super fun! The Elders helped and we had lunch afterwards! Super awesome and then that night we helped the ward proselitize some more.
On Quarta was Sister Andrade´s birthday!! The whole day was such a blast!! It was also a very interesting day...First off. I LOVE SUSHI!!!!! Sushi here is soooo good!!!! It’s fresh and everything!! So we ate sushi with a few members in our ward and after ate some pastries that are always good!! So we entered a store to buy paper and I left my wallet there and later I realized it was we searched for about 20 minutes and found it. And then Sister Andrade lost her camera...So we searched for her camera for a little bit, and then that night the Elders were a little upset with us. But literally it was the funniest day because we just laughed and had a great time! If it was any other day pretty sure Sister Andrade would have been super annoyed haha but luckily it was her birthday!! 
Quinta during our studies we had an old investigator call us and wanted to talk to us. He had a baptismal date but then he disappeared. He called and said that he talked with Jehovah’s witnesses and they told him our church was false. It’s a miracle that we’re in contact with him again!! And then that day on the road we found a family that had already received some of the lessons. The mom has a problem with Sunday. She says that the bible doesn’t say that we should worship on Sunday but on Saturday. So we talked about it and we have a date to go back! And that night we visited another family that we haven’t been able to see for a while and they were actually in their house!! Such a miracle! Elisabet´s mom is in the hospital so she is always there but that day she was in her house! We talked and we’re going to try to visit more often now. 
This weekend we had Stake Conference and it was so great! President called us and asked that we ask one of our recent converts to bare her testimony. She did so well! President was really happy! I got to see Sister Marinho (Day) again and met the stake president and a lot of other people. And then Sunday morning we continued Stake Conference. I was really sad to hear about Elder Perry. It didn’t help that we sang God Be With You Till We Meet Again. I was just crying the whole time because I know who Elder Perry was to our family. He was such an amazing man and I love him so much. The spirit was so strong there and the Portuguese people sing loud and proud whether or not they are on pitch. Loved it!! 
So right now Sister Andrade is having braids put in her hair again. She loves you so very much! Thank you mom for the letters and the magnets! They’re on our fridge. 
 I love you all so very much!! I pray for you all everyday and know that the Lord will bless our family with whatever we are in need of. I love my Savior so much. 

The church is true and the book is blue!!
Sister Hillam

Our district in President's board!





Feliz Aniversário Sister Andrade!