Elder Matthew Nielsen

"You are assigned to labor in the Brazil Fortaleza East mission"

Faithful Members

Hello Family and Friends!

I’m really happy right now! This last week turned out to be GREAT. We were able to get a lot done and we had a lot of success in our area. I’m also starting to get to know my area better and the members. These members have really touched me:

  • Emanoel and Lucila: Emanoel has been a member for 25 years, but fell out of activity in the church as a youth in Fortaleza and then moved to Quixadá where there wasn’t a church presence yet. One day, a year and a half ago, he felt very discontent with his life, he said a prayer asking for help, and while he was driving his car one day, two missionaries from the church passed him. He rolled down his window and called them over. He felt that the missionaries were an answer to his prayer. After a bit of time, he returned back to full activity in the church and is now the Elders Quorum President. Lucila was baptized after the two missionaries married them and she is now the Relief Society President. They were sealed in the temple a few weeks ago. They are basically the “parents” of all the missionaries here.
  • Eliane and Bruno: Eliane went to church for 25 years in Fortaleza AS A NON MEMBER! She actually lived in Quixadá, but there was no congregation yet, so she travelled to the nearest church. She was really the one who convinced the mission to send the missionaries here. She called President Fusco and asked for missionaries to teach her. She later got married so that she could be baptized. She is now the Young Women’s President. Her son, Bruno, at the first fast and testimony meeting of the new branch, gave his testimony and then said he wanted to be baptized (he had never been taught by the missionaries before). They always make lunch for us on Sundays.

Impressions of Brazil:

  1. There is a hot drink here called Cevada. I love it! It smells a little like coffee, but has completely different ingredients. Many Brazilians are addicted to coffee, so we ease them off of the addiction by suggesting that they drink Cevada. This generally works.
  2. There is a really good tasting juice made from a fruit called Acerola. Acerola looks like cherries, but tastes very different.

I love this scripture in 2 Nephi 28:30: “For behold, thus saith the Lord God:  I will give unto the children of men line upon line, precept upon precept, here a little and there a little; and blessed are those who hearken unto my precepts, and lend an ear unto my counsel, for they shall learn wisdom; for unto him that receiveth I will give more; and from them that shall say, We have enough, from them shall be taken away even that which they have.” God is so willing to give wisdom, but we have to want it. We have to ask for understanding. And as we ask, he will give.  I testify that God lives.  Take the time to pray and ask for understanding in your life.

Have a great week!

Elder Nielsen

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