Elder Matthew Nielsen

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

In the Big City!

Hello Family and Friends!

General Conference was awesome!  I hope that those of you who received impressions while listening to the talks, will act on those impressions.  I’m excited to study the talks in more detail when they are available on the church website.  I know that those who spoke were truly inspired by God to say those words.  I especially loved President Dieter F. Uchtdorf’s talk and Elder Jeffrey R. Holland’s talk.

I have really had to adjust to living in a big city!  It is so different from living in a small rural setting.  The people are so busy here in the city.  But one great benefit is being able to have the help of a fully formed ward.  The members are so sweet and loving here (like all my areas), which is a wonderful blessing.  My new companion, Elder Da Rosa, and I are the zone leaders here.  The name of the zone is Planalto. There are 5 companionships in this zone, including mine. It is a new zone.  My work area is VERY small (about 10 blocks).  We are working a lot with the members to find new people to teach.  We need to find those who will listen to the gospel message.

My companion is awesome.  He is from the Rio Grande do Sul.  I met him when he finished his training 7 months ago.  He is an incredible teacher.  And is a convert to the church.  He was baptized, along with his younger brother, when he was 16 years old.  We work well together, which is wonderful.  I hope we are able to stay together for a long while.

Impressions of Brazil:

  1. For all you pizza lovers, the pizza in Fortaleza is a lot less expensive to buy than in rural cities.
  2. There are a lot less bugs here in the big city!  Did I tell you about my rat story?  Well in Quixadá, there were a lot of rats and the missionaries all had a fear of rats and locked them in the bathroom!  Haha!  Well President Fusco one day heard about this and went in to take care of them.  He killed all the rats on his own.  He literally killed them with a broom and his bare hands.  Cool right?!  He is my hero!

I love these scriptures:  “And Moses said unto the Lord, O my Lord, I am not eloquent, neither heretofore, nor since thou hast spoken unto thy servant:  but I am slow of speech, and of the slow tongue.  And the Lord said unto him, Who hath made man’s mouth?  Or who maketh the dumb, or deaf, or the seeing, or the blind? Have not I the Lord?  Now therefore go, and I will be with thy mouth, and teach thee what thou shalt say.”  (Exodus 4:10-13)  What powerful words!  When the Spirit guides us to do something that might seem impossible to do, we need to remember these words:  “I will be with thy mouth, and teach thee what thou shalt say.”  When we are trying to do the right thing, the Lord will help us to accomplish the difficult task ahead of us.  We need to trust in the Lord and that everything will turn out well.  Act on the promptings that come by the Spirit.  And don’t ever doubt that you are capable of following through on it, because with the Lord’s help, you are able to do incredible things, even what we would call the impossible things.

Missing everyone at home,

Elder Nielsen


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