Monday, May 30, 2016

Keep the Sabbath day Holy!

Dear friends and family

Well, this week was super awesome

We had a zone conference this week, and an area seventy spoke. It was super inspiring. He talked about the importance of Sunday, the lords day of Sabbath. Which I see so much here in Bento Gonçalves. We have found so many people here in bento Gonçavles who have left the church. They told us that their lives were so much better when they were going to church, but since then, it is evident the damage that has been done. Almost all have families broken up, kids in jail, parents separated, and addicted to addictions of the world. The feeling of peace that comes from living gospel principals is absent, and they always express how they would love to return. But there is always something holding them back. I have realized that the commandments are not a prison of rules, but rather a key which get you out of the prison of addictions and sin. Christ sacrifice does not save us IN our sins, it saves us FROM our sins. Implying that we are require to exercise faith unto repentance in order for Christ sacrifice to help save us from our sins.

That's my message for today, love you all, and stay strong!!

-Elder Shurts

Monday, May 23, 2016

Week 32

Dear friends and Family

This week was filled with experiences. Where to start though. Alright, so we found an awesome family. The mom has been in inactive for a while, but she has three kids now that have never known the church which We are teaching. Anyway, we taught them the first lesson, then invited them to pray about it, asking god if what we taught them was true. and the next time we visited, you could tell something was different. Then we asked them how their prayer went, and they started talking about how good it felt. Just happy, but they didn't seem to have the words to describe it. Her son put his hand on his heart, and just smiled. So we set a date for their baptism. It was awesome

the other cool experience we had was we went back to that Winner school for learning English. We talked to people in English for a while again. That was fun, they were nervous, because we are from America! Anyway, that's about it for the week.

-Elder Shurts

We made crepes!!!

Working on our banana pie!!

I bought a Camouflauge Cuia

So proud of the pie

our districty meeting, with banana Pie and Chemarrou

our districty meeting, with banana Pie and Chemarrou

our districty meeting, with banana Pie and Chemarrou

our districty meeting, with banana Pie and Chemarrou

Brasil!! up in Zatt

English school


How they make cobblestone roads

Family home evening with less active family

Monday, May 16, 2016


Dear Friends and Family 

Well, this week wasn't all that eventful. But, we did have an integration night, where the ward was supposed to come with friends and stuff who aren't members. That was fun, but no one brought any friends. So, it was just members. Us four missionaries sang though, I need thee every hour, which didn't sound all that bad. So that was fun. 

I also skyped home to my family. that was the highlight of the week. Just reminded me how much I love my family and how important families are. I know families are important, because they're one of the first things god organized on the earth. The Family Unit being one of gods first creations (after the creation of Adam of Eve). In the scriptures, god constantly is reminding his servants that their families should be their first Priority. In the Book of Mormon, the Nephites fought against the Lamanites, first and Foremost, in protection of their families. In the Bible, Covenants were made to the family Abraham, and his family, so that his seed would be blessed if they kept the commandments. In D&C, the saints are verbally burned for neglecting their families. And today, covenants can be made in families that bring a family to live eternally together. So, always put your family as your highest priority, because that will be the one choice you will never regret!

Monday, May 9, 2016

My Week!

dear friends and Family

This week was good, not much new happened

But Melanhe came to church yesterday, which was super excited. She even brought three of her kids with her. Shes really trying to get the whole family invlolved, which is really cool. Any time someone gets to church is always a huge step of faith. We set a babtismal date for her in three weeks. So, were now prepareing for that.

Anyway, my new companion is super awesome. Hes american, from Arizona. Hes got glasses and is shorter than me. hes a blonde, and American. We get along great. The worrk is going really good here. Weve actually been working a lot with the members, which is working really well. So, to sum it all up, its all good in the neighberhood! 

Thank yall

Elder Shurts

Monday, May 2, 2016

Babtism of Leo and Eliza:)

Dear friends and family

This week has been fantastic!

So this Monday and Tuesday were pretty hot here. about seventy degrees more or less. But Wednesday, it got freaking cold!! got to about 40 degrees Fahrenheit here with this rain that gets to the bones. Shivering everywhere we walked. and the other horrible thing is the apartment doesn't have any heaters, so the apartment we stay in stays freezing cold all night. I sleep in my sweatshirt and socks. And showering in the morning is death! haha, but at least you wake up, so, it can be a good thing too. Actually, the weather here is a lot like Oregon, the only difference is that the houses don't have heaters. So, its permanently cold!

Other than the weather here, Dyonas, our last baptism has been progressing amazingly well. Every time we teach him, Im amazed at his faith, diligence. and humility. He asked us last time a bunch of questions about sharing a spiritual thought for family home evening. then explained that hes giving one next Sunday at this members house. Things like this make the mission worth it. He also came to church in a suite, because he was receiving the Aaronic priesthood today. That was super special, He understood and was super excited about it!:)

We also made tacos the other day, that was fun. They don't eat tacos here. But, we bought ground beef, and used taco spice an elder christensens mom sent from america. It was a Taco bell spice, which was amazing. (since taco bell doesn't exist down here)

Anyway, so two HUGE things happened this week as well, which are definitely worth noting. The first thing was something that started actually in my last area, Serrano. in my last area, me and Elder Neyland found this family, Leo and Eliza. We taught them, and they quickly became super strong converts story. The only problem was that they weren't married. and the rule is that you cant baptize people who aren't married legally. the reason for that is because they are breaking the law of chastity. But anyway, its all good in the neighborhood, because that just means you have to help them get married. But, the only problem with that is that marrying is a thirty day process, and we as Elders generally only stay in areas for about a month and a half. So, what happened was Leo and Elizas paperwork for marriage got started a few days AFTER I left Serrano. Which meant I wouldn't be there for the baptism which would happen a month after the papers are processed and they are officially married. Well, their baptismal date came up at the end of this transfer, because they were scheduled to be baptized on Saturday, 6 in the evening. Luckily, I was in the same zone, so I called President, and got permission to leave my area and go to their baptism.
So, to summarize all that up, a family I taught had to get married, which is a process that takes a month. I left before that process started. After your married legally, your allowed to be baptized, and I got permission to be there for the baptism.
Anyway, the baptism was super awesome. I got there, and met up with them, and we caught up on things for a while, just talking. I saw a lot of old friends as well which I made in Serrano while I was there. Then, we asked Leo and Eliza who they wanted to baptize them, and Eliza chose me to baptize her!!:)  which made me super happy and excited. The water was super cold, but still worth it,and I was so happy for them. Afterwards, me and Neyland sang a special hymn, Lead Kindly light (brilha mega Luz, numero 60). which sounded pretty good actually, the spirit was super strong. and the closing hymn was Joseph smiths first prayer, which sounded absolutely amazing as well. After the baptismal meeting, we left and returned to our area in bento Goncalves. 

The other crazy thing that happened was transfers. This was only five weeks long for some reason. My companion Elder Pryor was transferred to Passo Fundo and I stayed here. the new companion Ill be receiving will be Elder Miller, another Freaking american! haha. This is super funny and rare actually, because usually two Americans aren't companions here in Brasil, hes going to be my third American companion!

Anyway, Id like to share my testimony with you all that God loves you. He wants whats best for you, and has a plan for you. and the name of this plan is called the plan of happiness, or the plan of salvation. All he asks is for us to exorcise our agency and accept his perfect plan. Have the faith to make the first step, and hell take the next two for us. remember that god will not rob us of our agency and force salvation on a soul who doesn't want it. If your someone who rejects god, and intentionally turns away from him, hes not going to force you to live in his presence in his eternal kingdom. that's where we need to do our part, take that first step, and obey, and the desire to be obedient will show our desire to be with god. Our striving to be obedient will show our faith. and the act of faith has the power for the atonement of Christ to work in our lives, and fill in the gaps where we lacked. thus, opening the doors of the kingdom of god. 


Elder Shurts