Monday, December 21, 2015

Dec. 21, 2015 Christmas in Caucaia ...again. He loves this place

         Rumors at Christmas time

Hey guys... this week was pretty eventful so lets see if we can't sum it up. 

Talk about everyone trunky... like the whole week. On Wednesday we had our mission Christmas party and that was pretty fun. we went back to Caucaia and we had a fun time at the church's sítio. President went a little overboard with the children's play toys but it was still good.

(sorry im not in the pics mom but i was just getting some pics to remember what was here)



wet soccer....? there was soap on the court so it was slippery

and a mechanical bull

there are about 180 missionaries in my mission..

and a ton of packages (p.s. thanks Aunt Kristin!!! I got the package :) )

Lots of my good friends went home this weekend. My ex-companion Elder Williams, Elder Gshwend, and Elder Carvalho. These next few transfers are going to be super weird seeing a bunch of people leave. 

(that is not who is in this picture btw)

Thursday we went back to the temple to get references for the mission.. so we sit out front and do contacts with everyone and basically try to pull out their address without looking desperate... well.. the record was broken again... 

It really wasn't fair. We had the assistants and zone leaders so like... if we wouldn't have broken the record it would have been embarrassing... he is dead cause that was his last day of the mission. He is home now.... haha

We have a transfer coming up this week. So Next week ill be leaving Pirajussara. The rumors are that ill be going to the mission office as the AP. We´ll see what happens. I will only know on Sunday...

We also had our ward Christmas program this week. It was on Saturday.. Im super bummed cause we spent the entire day fixing stupid problems in the zone. We had to go get a planner, do a baptismal interview that didn't happen cause they weren't home, fill up a baptismal font that Satan emptied and also talk to everyone at the party. man i was stressin that day. but at least we got dinner and a few contacts :) 

At least the week ended finally with a really great baptism of Edina and a couple that the other elders were working with. Its just that... Satan really hates us... We had filled up the font Sunday morning and it was ready for that afternoon. We had our meeting and right as we went to do the baptism... the font was empty.. someone had pulled the plug on our baptism!!!!!!! I HATE SATAN!!!!!!!!!! We then took it into our hands and had every faucet in the chapel turned on to fill up buckets to fill up the font faster... about 45 minutes of waiting later... They got baptized. :) Take that Satan!!! 

Alright so that was this week. sorry it was so long but a lot had happened! 

Merry Christmas!!!! :) 

Elder Kyson Sullivan

Even the buses are celebrating :) 

Monday, December 14, 2015

Dec 14, 2015 workin for a white Christmas

          Gettin into that Christmas spirit

This week we had a lot of good things happen. :) We have 3 baptisms planned for this sunday so we are busy running around and keeping them happy with everything. Im getting a little trunky in this area.. ive been here for almost 6 months so im almost ready to ask them to make my membership official here in the ward haha. I know that ill be leaving here shortly. probably within 2 weeks. So im getting in those last baptisms before i leave zion haha. 

Funny story. We were trying to be a cool zone and baptize every week. President said that we should make a "white christmas" and mark everyone for the 19th and 20th. We tried being rebelious and not do that. Well... we havent baptized the last 2 weeks and everyone happened to fall on the 19th and 20th... so my lesson learned is.... Follow your leaders haha.

Lets look at pictures now :) 

This is the house that came closest to being the most decorated house ive seen. 
Thats a hard task here in brazil....

Maybe sometimes boys from utah dont know what coffee looks like.... Just a heads up for you future missionaries... it really exists ;)

our cute (not gay) foto shoot at a family night.

nativity scene at the chapel next to the temple.

Pizza :) 

Its a little late but here it is.. This mcdonalds is the best... it has air conditioning!!!!!! :) 

escada de inferno

This tree is massive. look it up. its called Jaca. 

they are like watermelon that grow on a tree. And they dont fall either. Their (for lack of a better word) umbilical cord is freaking thick!!!!! We tried getting one but it wouldnt fall..... 

Dec 7, 2015 A year and a half completed

          A year and a half

This week we had a lot happening. A lot of good appointments and a lot of good people to teach. The highlight was our new message. We talk a lot about repentance to the people now like the apostles did and like D&C says to. Arrependai-vos! So we are doing that and saying that to leave the sin completely you need to be baptized. Its working. We had 2 teens come to church and they liked it! after showing them the font we marked them to be baptized on the 20th. Be looking out for Gus and Julia :) 

We had a multi zone conference and President called us all out to repent. So really this repentance thing goes both ways haha. 

The zone is struggling this week. My plans for baptizing a ton in December are falling. I don't really know whats happening but nothing it coming from our work. I hope that by the end of the month we can get something going. 

Sorry its so short this week. My time is up. I would send some really great pictures but my drive isn't working on this computer.. so next week!

Merry christmas to you all!

Much love,

Elder Sullivan

Nov. 30, 2015 just happened to serve all this food on American Thanksgiving...

         Thanksgiving in Brazil isn't thanksgiving.

but it sure comes close at the house of irmã naide. 

Lucky for us we had one of the best lunches in the area on thanksgiving day :) Thats pernil. or like the pig thigh. SUPER good. 

yup. Thanksgiving. 

Besides this... well.. i do the same thing everyday. We walk and teach.

We were presented a "ready baptism" its a mother in law of a member and she is here for a few months and wants to get baptized. Her name is Edina. We are helping her stop drinking coffee and start doing the right things. really her only problem is coffee and she has already been to church more than 3 times. so its just time to throw her in the water. haha. 

We are also teaching another family member of a member of the church. Her name is Mari. She will be a little harder to get baptized cause she needs to get married first.... But she went to church and brought a friend :) 

And lastly we are teaching a mother of a missionary. Her name is Cata. She is super sweet and worries a lot about her daughter who is in the south of Brazil. She at first hated the church but now we are passing by and helping her read the BoM and pray about it. This is a cool experience. I'm super grateful that my whole family are members cause there are a lot of people out here who are the only member of their family baptized. That's a lot of Faith!!! 

That's all for this week! 
Elder Sullivan

Nov. 23, 2015 Mari's baptism

        Mari :)

This week we were blessed with maris baptism :) 

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She is the one one the left. and that's her granddaughter (also trying to be baptized ...) 

So this week was really turned towards preparing her. so lots of little lessons with her. Also we are working on getting people to go to church. 2 people showed up out of no where this week and they are related to members and now we are going to work with them :) NTM!!!!!!! haha. 

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This is the new elder in our zone. his name is Elder dos Santos. He´s chill. This is his first pizza in the misson. We're doing well in the zone but its all going down hill. The new people weren't as turned to the mission as the last ones. So we have some work to do. 

This is my week. sorry they are so short. really i just do the same thing everyday. And its talk with a bunch of Brazilians. 

Lots of love from brazil!
Elder Sullivan

p.s. no i didn't have to pay him to put that shirt on ;)

Nov. 16, 2015 no transfer for me this time

         6 months in Pirajussara

It's the transfer week and i didn't get transferred! that means the white Christmas is going to happen! :) This area is super good and im super happy that president left me here to enjoy the blessings :) My companion was telling me that i would leave the entire week. I told him that i wouldn't. I started to believe him a little towards the end and started getting trunky for my next area. I only have 4 more transfers so that's good. only one more area after i leave this one :) 

Not much really happened this week. We are still trying to find families. its getting kinda hard. We did 162 contacts trying to find them but its becoming a challenge. I feel like my companion is almost scaring them away... he is like super righteous and doesn't really like being friends with anyone. And when i try to talk about things other than the gospel i feel like he thinks im a fubeca cause im not "doing my purpose".  So that's kinda annoying. but he does a lot of contacts. Just one more transfer haha ;)

Really just running around is what happened. We´re looking forward to a baptism this weekend with Marina. She is a lady who a member kinda introduced us. He said "hey elders!" then left. Hes the godfather of the granddaughter of this lady. She is super special and already has a testimony. its been super cool working with her and seeing her progress. :)

That's all for this week. here's a normal view of Brazil in the favela.... look at the pastors house next to the church haha

lots of love!

Elder Sullivan

the last zone

Nov. 9, 2015 the finding week

        Plans for a white christmas.

This week is the week to shine :) I had a really good vision of the zone and where i want them to be by December. We are planning on how we can get in 25 baptisms in DECEMBER!!!! There is no other zone that has come close to this. We are making a lot of plans. This week was the "finding week" 160 contacts. President said only 140 so we are bumping it up a little to get a little steroid boost in to help us find FAMILIES. Yes. the only way that we can baptize so many is only if we find families. Just think. If Everyone in the zone finds 2 families of at least 3 people its game over. Its a great vision that we have and this week the zone did 808 contacts. That's 160 per area. Only one area didn't get it but everyone else helped out with the rest of theirs by doing a little more.

This week we will be finding the people to teach and marking them for the 6th of December already. 15 new investigators! Should be great. We already have a few families planned for this day. but we are going all out on this idea and helping everyone else see our vision. This weekend we had 4 baptisms in the zone and 3 more planned for this weekend :) We are killing it. :) GH!!!!!!!!

As a reward for a good job we had a special PDAY today and we had breakfast at the chapel and played a few games and we had a lot of fun :) Sorry i dont have pics. i had forgotten my memory card at the lan house..... 

We had mission leadership council and that was about the same thing that happened when Moses went up to Mount Sanai to get the commandments. President was in Recife to get a training and so he wasn't there. Talk about making a golden calf haha. That was the worst thing that has happened in my life. The assistants didn't have any power but wanted all of it. It was crap. 

Thats basically the week. we are working with a lot of families now so it should be going better. 

Elder Kyson Sullivan

Nov. 2, 2015 wire cutters,a nose piercing, 2 baptisms, and my zone

         ZONA BATIZADORA!!!!

Yup! that's right everyone. I'm super proud of my zone. We hit 10 baptisms this month! The next zone that baptized had 8. We destroyed! This weekend the zone had 4 baptisms and my area had 2 of them! Gus and his brother Rod got baptized. That put up a fight but when they walked in with white shirts and ties (provided by dead missionaries) and without a piercing, there wasn't anything anyone could have said to stop it from happening. It was super great :) The baptism was good and they really liked the clean feeling afterward. Satan was trying super hard this week with Gus. Seemed like every other girl wanted to go over to his house. But he is super strong and locked himself inside. What a champ :)

Basically this week was that right there. a lot of stress to see if we couldn't have gotten in the 4 baptisms and working really closely with Gus and Rod. 

Im noticing that my emails are really kinda GH (gloria dos homens = mans glory) but really its all thats worth saying ;) haha 

I'm starting to make some plans on how i can motivate the zone to keep going. We are making plans to get December on its way to make it so we can baptize weekly. So far its going well. But i was complimented greatly by the assistants and that was a little better than being burned. Im going to keep this up haha ;)

com muito amor,
Elder Sullivan

My beloved zone :)

have you ever taken out a piercing with wire cutters?

me either....

until it finally happened haha ;)

that thing is pure steel. super hard to cut!!!!

Oct. 27, 2015 gus is golden


Well... I've hit my 6 month mark. That's kinda surprising. It kinda came around the corner quicker than i thought it would. that makes me a little nervous to know that here in a bit I'll be home with you guys. I'll give a little hint to you all. I wont get another mothers day haha ;)

This week was... well... it was super stressful. I have rejected the calling now to be the full time pianist for whatever event needs piano. its taking up too much of my valuable time. taking out a night for the choir and the practice time for the primary and the sacrament meetings I don't have time to go and teach people. of course i can try to keep playing but this week it kinda screwed us over. Ill explain..

So we found this teenager about a month ago.. no.. just 3 weeks ago. he was marked to be baptized this weekend. But this weekend i was asked to play the piano. Normally we would have gone and looked for him and took him to church on time. but we couldn't cause i was at the piano.. and i couldn't just get up and leave... So... my companion after the sacrament took a brother with a car and went and got him. So about 40 min late the meeting that would have been on time. That really isn't the problem. The problem is bishop. Gustavo came in with a nose piercing (which has nothing to do with what we teach) and bishop is COMPLETELY against piercings. Like he has already expulsed a different teen from the church cause he didn't want to take his out. yes.. expulsed. This bishop has been a source of problems for a while but never really messed with the baptisms. When gus came in, bishop came over and said that he isn't converted and that the bishopric doesn't support the baptism. (he was telling us by attacking us) we had 2 options. go ahead and baptize (he was ready to do that but the bishop probably would have attacked him about the piercing too. expulsing our recent convert) or wait a week and teach him things that have nothing to do with the gospel basics such as piercings and get a little more support. We opted to wait a week but told bishop that the piano will have to be cut so we can help him get to church on time. It will be better cause his brother will get baptized as well :) They are excited and after a good lesson with him yesterday he took out his piercing fine and without any arguments :) This dude really is converted. he is super chill too. Way prepared by the lord and super sincere! (btw he passed the interview really well from what i heard)

Being a zone leader is fun. It keeps you on your toes for sure haha. We are planning on how to make the zone baptize every week in the month and how we can get 10 baptisms each month in the zone. its a great challenge and uses a lot of teamwork and a lot of planning and strategy. I hate thinking of the people as numbers but really I feel like im playing a strategy game of who will be baptized and how I can help that along so it doesn't fall. Its great! also fixing problems and helping out wards is not too easy. We are trying to fix one now but its being a little more difficult. We have a great vision of whats going on and what needs to take place. The hardest part is finding time... haha. I've been a zone leader now for about 9 months. Crazy to think that I've come this far since then. Its been a great learning experience and good to learn to work in a team/group. 

We went to the temple today and that was a great experience. We were able to feel the spirit strongly and have a good session. That's why Pday is today and wasn't yesterday. 

This next week has some promises. A couple baptisms, lots of lessons, and french toast with maple syrup and root beer floats.  haha :) 

Elder Kyson Sullivan

p.s. i forgot my camera at home so next week will have lots of pictures :)

Oct. 19, 2015 golden baptism

         Ama got baptized! :)

This week has been pretty good. I had to go back to the federal police department and get my visa renewed. Don't worry. They will only kick me out of here on the 28th of may haha. But it was a good little throwback to when i had gotten here in brazil. 

My new companion is pretty cool. we have had a lot of good times already and he is helping me a little with the language. Staying with 2 americans over 6 months can kill whatever type of accent they had before. He likes telling everyone im an american to see if that makes them listen even more. haha its pretty funny to see the expressions on their faces and hear them ask, "What are you doing here?" haha. 

This week we worked hard to get a baptism in. Ama got baptized!! whooo!!! she was a reference from a member and she progressed so well and really was one of the easiest baptisms I've had. Like.. I didnt have to do the contact.. she doesnt work.. she went to church every week, she marked the BoM and accepted the date super easy. Whatever we tell her to do she does it. Like... super elect. Our next goal will be to take her to the temple to baptize her ancestors. :)

We had the Dessert Night in our ward that the missionaries put together. It was a success. We had about 50 - 60 people show up and we played a fun chair switching game and also had a really good message about being friendly. We also had 8 visiters that the members had brought. So they were our judges. We bought way too much soda and so we ended up taking about 16 liters of Dolly guaraná home. Dolly is like that cheap off brand soda that only the poor people get. we are poor so we just got that. We have been drinking so much this last week haha

I hope you have a good week. :) 
Elder Sullivan

Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Oct.12, 2015 ward pianist lol

         New Transfer. New Companion.

This week was pretty cool. We destroyed. Like we absolutely just took this week and wrecked it. We started visiting all of our NTM (nem todos são membros = not all are members) and we got a ton of new investigators. Like.. over 20. Lots of families to complete. But we arent just working with them but with our contacts that we do daily as well. We are setting up a lot of really good appointments and just with people that would like to go to church. So we are going to be doing some more inviting and following up this week. 

My companion is Elder Claud. He is from Santa Catarina (the south of brazil) and he is super cool. He has a lot of good ideas and is SUPER obedient. But still its super fun to be here. This area has turned from great to zion. We should be seeing a lot more baptisms here shortly. He has about a year and a half on the mission. So well trained and teaches well. Its so nice to be with people who know what theyre doing :)

We had leadership councel in the mission this week and they brought up some good points to help out the mission so we will start working these things in our zone. starting tomorrow in our soon to be super cool training. Our zone has shot up in all that we do. Everyone is working hard and we dont have bad people in this zone. definitely the hardest working people that i know are here. 

Because my companion left i have now been "called" as the ward pianist. haha. the real one is kinda less active so we´ll see how it turns out.

This week kinda just flew by and there isnt a lot to say really. I love you all and thanks for the support and the prayers. 

Elder Sullivan

This shovel was used at the ground breaking at the são paulo temple like 40 years ago. that was cool :)

leadership councel!

This is a river in my area. those pipes are the drainage from the washing machines and other things like rain water and stuff. This river smells REALLY bad.

FBI = Firm Believer In 

This is a dog in that previously mentioned river...

Missionaries walk too much. #ineedacar