Monday, July 25, 2016

RETURN WITH HONOR

Queria Família,
Eu vos amo. Feliz aniversario EVA!!!!! Feliz aniversario PORTER!!!! Parabéns Eric e Noelle por 3 anos casados!!! Muitos pessoas estão a celebrar anos!! Amo a minha família :) 
Well, this will be the last time I write home as a missionary. I am truly saddened by this fact. By this time next week I will be in President’s house and preparing to get on a plane. So these will be the last emails that I read and the last email I send.
The week was great! I will be really short on explaining the week. We started our week off with a barbecue at a member’s house on her birthday, which was super fun! That’s why I did email so early last week. Then we got a ride with Ana and her dad to visit a family. Super great family but aren’t ready to accept the message but we contacted them and left them with the spirit. On Tuesday we were with our cute little investigator Ana and our newest member Bea. They wanted to play Just Dance with a few people from the ward so we went with them. Super fun and Bea and Ana are really good friends now which will help with Ana integration in the future. On Wednesday we met with a less active for the last time for the summer, and then right after had a lesson with Ana. We then planned with Ana and her dad to go see Firmino and Monica, which was so perfect! We didn’t need to catch the bus and they could bring us back instead of having Firmino and Monica bringing us back. We did a lot of work in their village! Ana and José took us to a couple of family members and we taught a lesson with them and we also met our 10-member family. All that day we had planned a lesson to teach and it didn’t go exactly as planned, but it was good. On Thursday we had our Zone Conference with President, which went really well. It flew by! We talked about Christ’s attributes and had a few practices. It was unlike any other conference/meeting that I’d ever had. It was the best! On Friday we went out and worked with Bea for a little bit and found a man that accepted our message and come to find out with ex-wife and daughter are members in the states! His daughter plays soccer for a professional team! He ended up going to church on Sunday. We went to a baptism that night and Bea and Ana both went. I said goodbye to Ana and Jose because now that José is leaving, Ana’s mom won’t let us see her. Oh and we thought that I’d be saying goodbye to Bea before she left to Switzerland...so I thought I was saying goodbye to 3 of the most incredible people. But the baptism was great! Eduardo is so cool! Even though I didn’t teach him, still feel like he’s a part of me and my time here in Viseu. Saturday we were in the hospital again for Sister Hillam´s foot. It still gets swollen and she’s been having pains on the other side of the foot now. She’s on pills and a patch of icy hot stuff. I honestly feel so bad for her. But we’re still doing work! On that day we actually left the house to meet a less active and teach her 11-year-old son! They are so cool! She wants to come back to church and she wants her son to be baptized too! Sunday I said goodbye to Judite and Mario and their family because they won’t be here this next week. It was emotional for me on Sunday. I said goodbye to Bea because she left for Switzerland, and a few other moments were super sad. Bea was crying which made me cry. It was over all a really good week! :) This week we shall see what we can do. Sister Hillam was told not to walk much but we are thinking that we should for just a little bit. We shall see what our limits are and take care of her foot. 

I have loved the mission. It is the best thing I could have done in my life. I love these people, and I know God has taken care of them. `Now my brethren, we see that God is mindful of every people, whatsoever land they may be in; yea, he numbereth his people, and his bowels of mercy are over all the earth. Now this is my joy, and my great thanksgiving; yea, and I will give thanks unto my God forever. Amen. `-Alma 26:37 He loves these people here in Portugal, and I was the one blessed to walk, talk, and teach among them. I was the one being blessed the entire time. I know that He was in every single minute of my mission. There was no way that I could have done this alone. `He hath given me much success, in which my joy is full. ` -Alma 29:13 I will take no credit for the mission I served. Every single one of the people I taught and baptized was because God wanted it. Everything was based on His timing and done in His way. He is my Savior and Redeemer and only through Him was I able to fulfill His work. `And now, after the many testimonies which have been given of him, this is the last testimony, last of all, which we (I) give of him: That he lives! ` I know He lives and loves me and ever single one of us. How grateful I am for the knowledge of the Atonement. I have seen His hand in the work and seen His power in my life. The mission has taught me that the easiest way is through Him. One day we will have to come to the realization that true happiness only comes if we serve Him. I am both excited and sad for the future. I’m excited to start the next chapter in my life, but this past 19.5 month chapter has been so sweet. I will forever hold dear all the memories of the mission in my heart. I love this work. I love these people. I love Jesus Christ. 
`I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith.`-2 Tim. 4:7
RETURN WITH HONOR

Sister Madison Hillam 

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