Brazil Sao Paulo East Mission

Brazil Sao Paulo East Mission

Monday, September 29, 2014

Book of Mormon

Hey family

How was your week?
At transfers, I saw my son (Elder Mikulecky) my grandson (Elder Clive) my brother (Elder Buhler) And my nephew (I didn't see his name) That was cool. My son speaks really well.

I had the snakiest lesson of my mission this last week. And at the same time 6 new investigators who are young women. Their dual investigators. Investigating the church and us a bit too haha

I got a guitar from an elder that left the zone and didn't want to bring the guitar with him so now I can play at will :) I'm gonna learn some church hymns

We decided this past week that we wouldn't return with Books of Mormon in our bags so we've started to just turn them in to random people with a small explication and it's been kinda fun to do that :)

We also did an integration night with the Book of Mormon where we should part of "The Testaments" And some explications about the Book of Mormon and then we did some practices of turning in the Book of Mormon that were fun and then we gave every member a Book of Mormon to turn in to someone.

Tell me about your conference plans for this weekend.
I'm not exactly sure, I think we'll be able to watch the sessions as long as we have investigators there.

What makes you feel happy?
Seeing the branch/ward progress, pizza, açãí, having time to mess with excel (which I don't have lately :(   )

What is your morning routine?
Wake up, exercise, bath, eat, study. Pretty normal.

Tell me about some of the missionaries you enjoy being with/learning from.
Elder Campbell is awesome, almost my height and a great missionary and leader, he's Zone Leader now.  Elder Gilliat, and Elder Elias as well.

What are some blessings you’ve received lately?
I've received the blessing of Elder Rivera having recognized that he can decide what attitude he wants to take and having decided to take the right attitude and be my friend.

Well that's about it for today. I learned some other things as well but my times about up so i'm signing off.

Turn in a Book of Mormon! It's fun :)

And ask the missionaries what you can do to help them.

Elder Horton

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

9-22-14 "Organize yourselves, go hungry, but pay your tithing!"


Hey family,

The ward here is making a missionary plaque for you – what scripture should I tell them to put on it??      Alma 26:22

Where do you get your hair cut?
When there's a sister that cuts here, I cut it with her usually but if not, there are a good amount of hair cutters so I just cut it anywhere.

Have you been sick at all?
No, I thought I was starting to get sick but I didn't so yay!

Is it starting to get warmer?  What would you compare your winter to – Augusta??  Greenville??  Provo??
Yes unfortunately :/ winter compared to...warmer than Augusta winter, and maybe also a good comparison could be a bit colder than a Provo summer. This winter almost didn't it's had some pretty hot periods even in the middle of winter.

How big is your branch?
It has a weekly attendance of about 85 people. We’re getting ready to turn into a ward! Or to divide into 2 branches.

How was your week?
The week was good, we moved our house and our new house which is super awesome! It has hot water even at the kitchen sink! The shower is like a small dam of water, it has a super nice view. It’s clean.  That was a day and half of effort. Then we had general conference which was cool. 

·         We all have an umbrella. It’s a spiritual umbrella. It's raining. But we decide whether or not we want to use the umbrella to keep dry. The umbrella is things like the scriptures, going to church, prayer, listening to the living prophet.
·         "Organize yourselves, go hungry, but pay your tithing"
·         Sermons without the invite to action is like water that doesn't take away thirst
·         Be insubstituble in the workplace
·         Parents and leaders need to help their children and followers to recognize their responsibilities and do them without doing it for them.

Elder Gilliat, who was in my MTC district and who is in my current district, will be training this transfer! He's pretty excited about that and I'm happy for him.

I'm happy that I have the chance to stay in Pinda and continue to help. I feel like I'm making a difference.

I'm not really sure what else to say...I'll try and send some pictures.'s kind of a short letter but I think I'm gonna close it up. I got like 10 other things I wanna do too so yep The church is true!

Lots o' love

Elder Horton

Me with President and Sister Andrew

 The view from our new apartment!

9-15-14 Jacquelyn is going to Bulgaria!


Hey mom!

Interesting comment made by Alexandre, one of President Celio's counselors in the branch. He said that when I get back home that I'll be a good ward mission leader because I'm good at incentivizing and making people excited and that when I get on the pulpit, I don't just talk but 'exult' the members. He said that for this reason, he likes me. That's always nice to hear, it made me happy

Me and my companion are doing well, always getting better!

one of the sisters, in her farewell testimony (just one more week) said that she had a dream in the which she was in the pre-existence and even saw some of the missionaries in our zone there with her. She said that there was like a final feast before we entered this world as babies and that at this feast, there was like healthy, good food but simple food and that everyone had received all the lessons and the trainings necessary to enter this world and she said that she saw this group of people, and also another group of people that were eating unhealthy things that were kind of slouched in their chairs, kind of lazy. She said that the first group was also dressed in armor and had swords and shields and she even said that she saw our current zone leader there and that he was the leader of that group and that was a great leader before and is a great leader now. When she told us all that I was kind of surprised, it's interesting, I thought I'd share this story with you guys.

How was your week? 
It was good, we found some cool new people to teach that invited us for some Brasilean churrasco this week! THat's what I'm talking about! We also had one investigator at church, Nicholas. It was his second time. He's a cool young guy (16 years), we'll see what happens with him.

This past week, we did a division/splits with the zone leader and that was cool. I stayed with the zone leader and Elder Rivera stayed with the ZL's companion. I learned a good amount of stuff with him. It was interesting too because we were studying together like normal and he told me that when he got in the mission, he wanted to baptize 500 at the end of his mission but has not even come close to that. I asked "Well what's necessary to baptize 500?" I thought that maybe the answer was public preaching like in olden times. He then told me a story about missionaries who, a long time ago, gave books of mormon to book stories and any place that would sell the books and put up like advertisements and then a Lot of people just started reading the book and then ended up calling the missionaries saying "I've read the book of mormon and I want to be baptized in the true church of God"  and I thought that was awesome and you guys know me, I like big ideas. So we're started to talk about how we would do something like that. We've got a rough plan but we need to talk with President Andrew about it. I was gonna talk with him today about it but he left early :( but that's okay, I'll just call him later. We'll see what happens with this

What interactions have you had with your new president?
We got to know him today! He told us about his life story and that was nice, their lives are full of service. He and his wife speak portuguese really well. 

Did I tell you Jacquelyn got her mission call to Sophia Bulgaria?
Yep you did, she also sent me a personal email letting me know too

Dad, I hope you get feeling better soon, I know it's tough working and doing everything when you're not feeling well.

Well I think that's about it. It's not the longest letter this week.
Thanks for all your love and support

Elder Horton

9-9-14 I'm a Grandpa!


Hey family!

Sorry I didn't have time to respond yesterday, we had our zone meeting in the morning and then zone p-day and then a family night at night with some less actives which was very good and also it was a holiday so the usual lan-house was closed. but I'm on now!

Tercio and his friend that gave us the referral and his friend's entire family (who is actually from Taubaté so it was cool to see all of them again :) One of the young men said that he liked it when I was there and that I stayed there for very little time. It's good to feel missed)

I'm a grandpa!!  E Mikulecky is a trainer now!

Dad, one of my favorite scriptures about obedience is Mosiah 2:41 and it talks very clearly about the blessings. With youth, obedience to the commandments can be a bit hard, it’s true, but I know that you'll find a good way to help them understand why they should be obedient.

"Dad and I were going to go to San Antonio on Friday and spend the night and see the Alamo and the Riverwalk, and then go to the game on Saturday, but Dad hasn’t been feeling well all week and we thought it would be better to do the minimum.  I think it was a good call"
That reminded me of a talk that I'd heard recently by President Eyring in the General Conference talk a year ago in October in 2013 when he was talking about his parents and how they were very different and how his dad Loved Chemistry and his mom loved art and what not and that sometimes he forgot things that were important to her. Elder Eyring said something like "it would've been better if the Holy Ghost had reminded him of his promise to his wife made years ago but at least he let the Holy Ghost soften his heart so that the decision to fulfill her promise was his and that it wasn't a sacrifice to him" What you said in your letter reminded me of that talk and I'm just really grateful that have such good parents that have such a good relationship and that love each other so much that they are practically one in their desires and wishes and sacrifices that would've been very difficult become easy for you guys. so Thanks :) You guys are well on your way for a very successful celestial marriage and partnership with even greater responsibilities. You guys are good examples for me.

"We saw Jamal William’s mother and she had on tennis shoes that had 6 inch spike heels!!  I should have taken a picture!  That might have been rude, so I didn’t."
That's why you gotta walk around with a secret spy pen mom! :) or maybe just use your phone and make it look like your texting. Just make sure you don't have the flash on and that your camera doesn't make a sound

Do you remember the Zirkles?  They’re going on a mission to San Antonio Texas!  Also, their daughter, Kelsey, is returning from her mission soon.  I think right before they leave for their mission!  Their son, Tanner, is in Paris on his mission too.
Yeah I remember the Zirkles, that's cool!

I hope you got my notes about what a successful missionary is. 
I did, thank you, that helped me a lot to get my focus again. It's interesting too because we read the same list from preach my gospel yesterday in the zone meeting.

How was your week?
The week was cool, I liked it. Leoson, our ward mission leader, said that the air in the branch is changing for the better. and Alexandre, the second counselor, said that he's seeing a positive influence in the attendence of members at church which we're also seeing. It's good to be part of a difference. With just 10 or so more people, our branch can turn into a ward.

Tercio was baptized this last week! It was really cool

I bought a silver ring to go on my ring finger! To fight off the snakes. I don't know if I ever told you guys, but once, a woman asked me to marry her and sooo it's a precaution. "Sorry, I'm engaged..." it was 2 reais, a little less than a dollar
Leoson, our branch mission leader. When I got here, the other elders were complaining about him, that he doesn't do anything and that he's good for nothing else but give car rides. Well that was true before I got here but I got to know him and I came to see that he had great desires and faith and a great testimony, he just needed some motivation and someone to follow up with him. So these weeks and months i've been following up with him and working with him and we've managed to have a missionary meeting every week which but I've always had to call him and confirm with him and he usually showed up late but this last sunday, he showed up on Time without me having to call him! So that's some solid progress for me and I'm happy :)

We got a reference from Leoson and we went there and while we were talking with her (Vilma), her cousin called and Vilma said she was with "the elders" and her cousin was like "from what church?"..."Oh that's my church! Let me talk to them" I talked with her cousin and she told me "Elder, I was praying a lot yesterday at night that God would help my cousin. You are an answer to my prayers. Help her" so that was interesting. We marked our next appointment and left a pamphlet and we'll visit her today, we'll see how it goes.

I had an interesting experience with my companion this last week. I was adjusting the wardrobe/closet and the bar that holds up the hangers fell. I went to put it back in place and it fell again and then Elder Rivera started to just laugh at me. I started to do it again, he continued to laugh. I found it very annoying. I was annoyed to the point where I took out his clothes and threw them on his bed and told him to do it himself and I put my clothes up on the bar and left. I wanted to be a bit alone so I left the apartment and walked outside like 5 steps and I was thinking. My first thoughts were of anger and being annoyed. "Why does he have to laugh at me. Does he not care about me? Does he not think I have feelings too? does he think I like getting laughed at?" But then I changed my thoughts "...why doesn't he care about me? Why doesn't he love me? Because I don't love him...what is love? Love is charity which is the pure love of Christ. What would Christ do? Well...he would go back, apologize and arrange his clothes in the closet again. Sooo with a prayer that's what I did. He was obviously annoyed too. He didn't accept my apology or my help but left the room. I decided to help anyways. I took out some of my clothes to give room for his and arranged all of his clothes in the closet and even made his bed and sweeped around it. Doing all that, we managed to continue normally throughout the day without having any bad feelings. When I was with Elder Cosme, I don't think I would've acted like this. I think I would've just stayed angry and fought with him some more. For this reason, I feel bad that I didn't do better with Elder Cosme and I wish I could go back and redo it...but at least I've learned from my mistakes and I'm getting better. I've learned now (it seems) to humble myself after the situation and to do what I need to to make it I just need to learn to humble myself in and before the situation so that the bad feelings can be avoided altogether. Life really is a great learning process and it's all about just trying to become like Christ.

What kind of service did you give?
This last Saturday, we helped our branch mission leader to move his house and that was cool. I felt useful. I also helped destroy his cement path behind his new house which was a lot of fun :) This Saturday we're going to help another brother clean his with a hoe, take out the plants. Yards here are different.

Did anything funny happen to you recently?
We got a referral from some other missionaries. A member in their ward has a son in jail. This son was preaching the gospel in the prison and one of the other prisoners wanted his family to hear the same message. We got the information, went there. we clapped our hands at the gate and out came a person. I looked at the face...'I think it's a man' I looked at the body 'but it appears to be a woman?' the person spoke "Hi my name is Jessica" in a deep, gravely voice. 'ohhhhhhh crapppppp' he/she/it is a transvestite! I acted normally in the situation but man that was an awkward situation. I didn't know whether to say he or her. The person is also Macumbeiro....which is like voodoo or like black magic. Soooo we left a panphlet and said we'd try and return some other day to talk with another family member.

Did you get your spy pen order yet?
Yeah I did! I'm super excited too! Thanks for sending that! If all goes well, the money that I'll sell them for will go towards my Christmas money that you guys would’ve sent me so you guys won't need to send me anything for Christmas (not that I'll make a lot of profit but just because I'll sell it for about the same price that you guys spent buying it and sending it here.

Well, the time's running out. Thank you all for your love and support, especially you mom and dad. The church is true!

Elder Horton

 Washing the dishes of a sister.

 Elder Gilliat was tired!

 Tercio was baptized!

9-1-14 President Don Leo and Sister Claudio Ann Andrew


Hey family!

This week was alright. Our numbers weren't that great and I was outside of my area for 2 days doing divisions/splits with the other companionship. We didn't have anyone at church which was also a bit sad but we did our weekly planning session and set some plans and goals to have a better week this week.

In the other area, when we were doing splits/divisions, we were knocking doors and we happened to knock on the door of a less active couple! I believe that it wasn't just coincidence. We talked with them and they were very welcoming and friendly. The woman had actually just returned from a trip to the US in Minnesota to visit her family! She doesn't speak English though...She said that they were baptized in São Paulo (in the capital) and then moved here to Pinda but that when they got here, they weren't very well received and the Branch President and the Relief Society President were gonna visit her but never they became inactive for 8 years. But Saturday she entered into the church chapel for the first time in 8 years to participate in an English class that I and Elder Gilliat are teaching. She got to know some members of the church and so we're hoping that with some visits from some people, they'll come back to church.

The other elders also are preparing a man to be baptized this week, Tércio. He's very prepared. They taught him about fasting and fast offerings and then the next day, he did a fast and asked us "I'm fasting, how do I pay the fast offering?" He did that without them telling him to haha he's awesome. I'll probably interview him this Friday for his baptism.

Do you have a favorite memory of going to Edisto?
I liked going with the Fowers, because then I got to hang out with Chase. I don't have any single memory that stands out though..lots of holes...body surfing...sun burns and what not. It's all good memories.

So you’ve got a new mission president by now – tell me all about him and the transition and all.  I love the photo you sent of the last picture you had with him.  Is he from Houston??  You said something about running into him??  I think that would be a very frustrating way to end a mission!!
I don't think he's from Houston...buttt who knows if he'd pass by there.
So we do have a new president. President Don Leo Andrew and Sister Claudio Ann Andrew. They were serving in the Recife Temple and they were invited to serve as mission presidents here by the first presidency (which shows how far up this change went. The very prophet was thinking about this mission). We haven't really gotten to know them yet but we will get to know them.

You mentioned “mission conference” – was that a mission-wide gathering and meetings?  I’m assuming Pres Ferrin wasn’t there – tell me more about it.
Actually, President Ferrin Was there. It was a half of the mission that was there. President Ferrin wanted to have one last meeting before he left. He's gone by now.

How did the house building with Carlinho go yesterday?  I hope he was able to come to church today!  And Geralda too!!  Do they build houses there with wood like we do, or is it more stone like I remember some of the houses in Argentina?  Is he building the entire house, or just doing some of the work?  Hope it all went well!!
And so, yesterday we did a division or splits and so I stayed in the other area and my companion and another missionary tried to find his house to do the service. "Tried" because they went to the address that he passed to us and neither he nor the house was there..and then he didn't go to church yesterday and so I'm not really sure what to think about him right now. I'm also a bit less hopeful about him being baptized because he needs to get married and his wife isn't very open to us.
Houses here are similar to houses in Argentina I believe. A house made from wood is Very rare, I think I've seen one in my entire mission.

What news do you hear from family and friends and other missionaries??
I don't communicate with a lot of other people. Every now and then I'll talk with Sister Mady Spencer or my son in the mission but I usually just talk to you guys and mess with microsoft excel

I'm reading Doctrine and Covenants in my personal study and I never knew how much that D+C talks about missionary work! Like 70% of the sections talk about it. This really is the most important work and responsibility we have as members of the church. I remember a verse (I don't remember where right now) that says that before we should go back to our houses, we should proclaim the gospel on the way to the people we pass, our neighbors, friends and everyone.

The church is true!
I love you all

Elder Horton