Monday, April 27, 2015

Vila Franca de Xira!!

5 Americans, 1 Italian, 1 African, 1 Costa Rican
Silvana didn't want to let her leave 

Getting transferred and leaving new people you love is the hardest

Silvana's family

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Saying goodbye to the Ward in Setubal

Saying goodbye to the Ward in Setubal

Lorenzo, who says our church is horrible because you can't hug the
sisters!  This is them "Hugging"
Hey Guys!! 

This will be quick today. Transfers are always a little crazy! Haha So I am in a new area. Vila Franca de Xira and I will be serving in a branch with about 20 members! Cool huh!!! I am really excited. I am serving with Sister Elliot.  She is from CA and ran track and cross country for BYU! Haha She is going to help me stay in shape. She is also in her second transfer so I will be finishing her training. 

This week was amazing! I cant believe I served in Setúbal for 5 months!! I am going to miss the members a lot. It is amazing to me the relationships that we can make with people from different countries, cultures, and backgrounds. Also Sister Swain and I cried a lot!! I am going to miss her!! 

It is pretty funny... a lot of the members, when they said bye to me, told me to keep giving faca (knife) or in other words, to say it like it is to people. Haha They said that it needs to be said. It made me laugh. Lets just say that someone was saying that they were drinking coffee again, and they needed to give it up slowly or it would be bad for there health (that is what a doctor said) Well, I said, I don't care what the doctor said, we know what God has said and he knows better. Anyways it was a little harsh, but they said it was needed. You guys know how I am. haha 

Sorry this is so short today!I love this gospel so much! I am seriously so happy!! I LOVE YOU!!

Sister Lacey

Monday, April 20, 2015

Elder Bednar!!

9 months! Half way done already!!
Sister Lacey and Paula

Some goodies from her Easter package!

A favorite couple from Seixal

Ola minha família!! 

Hey guys!! Thank you so much for all the emails you guys are amazing!!! I miss you all but I am loving it here. 

This week was amazing! One really cool thing happened. I don't know if you guys remember, but about a month and a half ago we were having a rough day and we ended up saying a prayer and finding this really awesome lady outside her house. Well, in our first lesson with her she said she didn't believe in God. Well, on Thursday we had the feeling to stop by and see her. (She had called us a few weeks ago and said she was really busy and we couldn't come by anymore). So we went to her house and she came outside and told us that one of her sons is really sick and has been going to the doctors a lot to run tests and that she is pretty scared.  We talked with her and said a prayer and she was just crying and she then told us that she believes that there is something bigger than just us. Well on Saturday we passed by again and we talked about families a lot and I showed her pictures of you guys. And we testified that our message about Christ will bring peace to her family and that God lives. She started crying again and said ´´I know he sent you girls to me.´´ Isn't that amazing? A women who when we first met did not believe in God. I then told her how much God really does love her and I started crying. I told her that he really did send us to you. It was amazing.  One funny story that happened with her. She saw some pictures of us and our families and she saw pictures of us hiking and on quads and she said, ´´What, you guys can have fun and be happy in your religion?´´ And then I said that is our religion, to be happy! Haha 

So Elder Bednar was here yesterday!! It was amazing. He came and talked to 3 stakes here. And guess what ward was there? Seixal!! And guess who I saw?? Manuela and Victoria!! We started crying... it was so awesome. And I also saw this awesome couple from the ward and they got all excited when they saw me. It was so fun to see everyone and to be able to speak with them more. :) 

Elder Bednar was seriously amazing. He told us that we need to apply the atonement of Christ into our lives. He talked about ´´putting off the natural man. In Mosial 3:19 it says "For the natural man is an enemy to God, and has been from the fall of Adam, and will be, forever and ever, unless he yields to the enticings of the Holy Spirit, and putteth off the natural man and becometh a saint through the atonement of Christ the Lord, and becometh as a child, submissive, meek, humble, patient, full of love, willing to submit to all things which the Lord seeth fit to inflict upon him, even as a child doth submit to his father."  

I know that we can not only become strengthened, but we can become perfected through our Savior. At the end of his talk he said, ´´I know the Savior lives. I witness he lives (Look up the definition of witness) I witness that he speaks to us, his servants.´´ It was amazing the spirit was so strong. We are so blessed to have Prophets and Apostles on the earth. I know this is Christ's church! 

I love you all so much!!

Com amor, Sister Lacey 

Monday, April 13, 2015

9 months! O que!!!

Ola minha familia!!
Hey guys! How are all you all? This week flew by. You guys all sound great. I don't have much time today; we are in Lisboa today for P-Day and we need to catch a train soon.
Okay, I cannot believe that I am half way done with the mission! I am literally in shock. It is pretty funny because sometimes I think, wow I survived this long haha and other times I think, noooooo its going too quick, I have so much to learn and so much to do! Haha The mission is amazing and I LOVE Portugal!! Seriously everyone should prepare to go on a mission.
One of the coolest experiences happened this week. We were having a little bit of a rough day and we were talking to some people but not many people were interested. Well, I heard someone yell Lacey (and lets just say that is not something normal to hear in Portugal) Well I turned around and saw Paula. Okay well I don't know if you guys remember, but when we Skyped on Christmas, I talked about a really nice lady who we contacted and she complemented me on my Portuguese. Well, she saw me from far away and still remembered my name! She is incredible. And she told me that she thinks I am amazing and was thankful for how much I love I showed to her that day. She has cancer and in December we talked with her about the Plan of Salvation. Anyways, we just cried as we talked and I told her that I had talked to you guys about her and she cried more. It was seriously amazing. And that was almost 4 months ago!
The Lord truly looks out for us his missionaries. You guys know how I am pretty hard on myself sometimes. And I realized something this week. If I am teaching people about repentance and the atonement, I need to use it and rely on my Savior more in my own life. It is so funny to me, but when I hear about what people have done in their lives in regards to smoking, drugs, the law of chastity, I completely believe that The Lord well help them overcome their challenges but when I stay at a Recent Convert's house too long or I stay in for lunch for and hour and fifteen minutes it is the end of the world.
Repentance is a wonderful and happy thing! It is a way to become more like our Savior! It is such a blessing that we can become better and from what I have learned on my, mission if we are not improving, we are moving backwards. We need to constantly be pushing ourselves a little more. And that's why I think missions are so great! It is a way to improve on full speed. Haha Sometimes it is not the most comfortable thing in the world and sometimes I think NO I cant do this and then with The Lords help, I do.
This is the Lord's work! If it wasn't, do you really think 19 and 18 year-olds could be living on their own in different countries? I love this is gospel so much. I know this is Christ's Church. Like Brookie said, we need to show Christ's light to others. Like it says in The Living Christ, ´´He is the light, life and the hope of the world.´´ HE LIVES! I love you all so much!!
Com Amor, Sister Lacey

Monday, April 6, 2015

O Salvador Vive!! (The Savior lives!)

Watching Sunday Afternoon Session of General Conference
(at 9pm in Portugal) Everyone else could watch it at home :-)
A package from Brooke!

Friday night pizza (delivered through the window!)

At night, after planning, in PJs,  enjoying Portuguese soup from a member

Ola minha família!! 

Conference was so amazing!!! I got to watch all of the sessions.  It was seriously amazing! I am so glad that you guys got to go! We are so blessed to be guided by prophets and apostles! And just a side note, Elder Teixara, he is form Portugal and he is so awesome! It was cool to see him speak. He was the Elder who talked a lot about technology and said,´´Life is not confined to a 4 inch screen.´´

This week was amazing!! On Thursday, we were contacting some people and I stopped this one man. We talked with him and he said when he was younger he went to our church a couple of times. We invited him to watch "Because He lives" and we went on our way. He didn't give us his contact information because he said he will be moving to France to work soon.  I felt kind of strange though. We felt like we needed to talk to him again and leave a restoration pamphlet with him. Well, he was walking in front of us and so we chased him down. Haha We started talking again and we said a pray with him right there and after the prayer he said, you guys should know that I am a member. I was a deacon after I got baptized but a few years later my mom got a job and we stopped going to church. We got his contact information and left a Book of Mormon with him and tears welled up in his eyes. He said he is going to be really alone in France, away from his family, and he knows the Book of Mormon will help him. He came to General Conference and we have an appointment with him and his family tonight. :) Do we take for granted the power of The Book of Mormon?

This past 2 months as a mission we have been studying about the last week of Christ's life.  We ended yesterday. I love my Savior. He is so real to me now. I love him and I miss him. I was pretty sad on Thursday as I ended my studies with his death. It really affected me. And I read something interesting in Jesus The Christ. John explained that a solider stabbed Christ after His death to make sure he was dead and that blood and water came out of the wound. (Sorry, why I am explaining this will make more sense soon).  Well, I remember learning about this in college, but in rare cases people have died of Cardiac rupture, or in other words, a broken heart. This is caused by intense grief, pain, and sorrow. It is true that it was Christ's choice to ´´give up the ghost´´ but when I think of it and a doctor said it in Jesus The Christ, that he believes that Christ died of a broken heart. I just cried when I read that. He was completely alone. When I cried out to The Father, ´´My god my god why hast thou forsaken me.´´ I finally realized then that Our loving Heavenly Father left him so that Christ could have the complete victory over death and sin.

I know he lives!!  He is so real to me. During studies this week I was just thinking that I wouldn't have been surprised if he just walked into my apartment. I know that won't happen, but that is how real he is to me. He is the life, the light, and the hope of this world. How blessed we are to know he lives. I love him! 

Sister Lacey