The Sisters

The Sisters

Thursday, December 29, 2011

Sarah Cate: Buuuennnnooos DIAS!!

Dearest family and friends of mine!
I love y'all so much. It was absolutely fantastic to hear y'all's voices and know that I have the best family in the world. I did, however, forget to ask a very important question....How is my dog? I miss her so much. Were y'all ever able to open up the video e-mail that we sent yesterday?
After we got of the phone with y'all we went to the Bishop's house for a bit and ate dinner with his family and one of the coolest people ever--"Aunt Polly". I've met her several times and every time, its like she is meeting someone new. I love it so much. She is such a beautiful person. Ohhh I just love it. We then went to the Kent's house for a bit and visited with them for a bit. P.S. Meg--you said I wouldn't get very many presents this year? YEEEAAAAHHH RIGHT!! I got whole bunches of presents. They are all very generous and kind. I am sooo blessed.
I did get an e-mail from Yi Ching today wishing me a very merry Christmas and letting me know that her phone has been kind of broken and so she can't retrieve any of her messages and that she didn't know if I had called or not. I am sooo happy though because she said that they want to see me!!! yahooo!!! Yet another beautiful blessing.
My trainee is so good at being a missionary. She shows me up all the time. I feel bad/ down on myself sometimes because of it but I am happy that I get to have this opportunity to love myself and grow from it. yyyaaaayyyy Heavenly Father sees fit for me to grow!!
I just love y'all so much. I have the best family in the world. I have the coolest siblings in the world. Man, I just want to be like every one of them!! Thanks y'all for your examples!
I love all y'all!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!  Wow, I am gonna need to send home tons of stuff from here because Texas winter does not last long and I need to lighten up my suit cases. I love y'all. I will pray about going back to school immediately. I truly don't want to but I can't decide if its fear talking or the spirit. I just need to pray more about it.
HAPPY HAPPY BIRTHDAY THIS WEEK DADDY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!  

I LOVE Y'ALL SOOOOOO MUCH. I hope it's just a beautiful day. When I send y'all the package, I will have gifts for y'all. You may not get it till mid January..... yikes. I'm sorry. I'll be better. Well y'all just have a beautiful day. Don't forget that I love y'all so much

Hna. Sorensen

Libbi: Noticias da Brasileira

 Oh, I can´t even express how wonderful it was to talk to you guys yesterday and how excited I am now to work work work and dedicate myself more fully to this wonderfully important obra(work). I have known for a while but I always forget when I´m on the Internet to say CONGRATS DANIEL AND AMANDA!!! on getting married for time and all eternity! I´m so proud of you and your example is amazing as you commence your journey together! I love you both and I really loved receiving your wedding announcement this week....just a day after you were married...I love snail mail. Sorry, but better late then never and I wish everyone a happy new year!!!

The work, I have to admit, was very slow this week. It was difficult to find people at home because lots of people go on trips this time of year or don´t want to hear about Jesus Christ when they are on `feriado` but its all good. We now start a new transfer and I have been blessed to stay here in the same area and with the same companion Sister Morais. We are learning a lot together and I know this transfer we are going to have success and work that much harder in this wonderful area of Industriario. Norma continues to progress but we found out that she is not married and unlike Campo Grande that has a program to get married for free...Cuiabá doesn´t have one and so its a bit more complicated to get married. We also found out about some problems in her union with her "practically" husband. But, she is reading the book of Mormon and continues to progress. We are working with another family that has a son on a mission but he is the only member. They are reading the book of Mormon but went on a trip for Christmas so we will try this week to confirm a date of baptism and get them coming to church again! We also met another reference of a member (neighbor) that is really excited and ready to hear more about the Gospel. I´m excited about your possibilities with Maiara.

The work progresses and Libbi is becoming more and more lost as I find more and more the identity of Sister Sorensen (or surriso como muintas pessoas fala que nâo sabe falar meu nome) good stuff....this week I found out that the brand of lemonade that I experimented with is called Frisco....not to be confused with Fresco which is another word for gay...I discovered yet another oops :) Life keeps on going and I keep on learning. I hope all of you are doing the same. Read the scriptures, pray always, and keep choosing what is right. You will be happy...its a promise of our Heavenly Father! I wish you all the very best and a happy new year. Let´s work hard and do our part more fully in this year of 2012!!!!!

com amor,
Sister Sorensen

(Photo of Sister Sorensen through the computer screen during her Christmas Day Skype Conversation)

Friday, December 23, 2011

Sarah Cate: Good Day and happy Christmas week!

Oh how I love my family.
This past week was one of tremendous missionary work. A week ago was very emotional and I didn't get any sleep...literally about 2 hours. It was really hard to know that all the spiritual Giants on the mission that I really loved and respected were leaving.
As I said before though, I was paired up with a beautiful sister name Hermana Hopkins. (Sharise Hopkins). She is beautiful inside and out. She is a brand new missionary so this was the end of her first transfer or first six week period. It was up to me to take over for a
week until we both got new companions or until President decided to double me out and send me to Riverside (her area) to finish training her. This past week covered both areas and found out had the huge blessing of speaking my mission language a lot. It was so beautiful
and the gift of tongues is real.  I have prayed for it every day on my mission. (both for the gift in English and Spanish). I got to go to the Riverside Christmas Party and got asked to play an impromptu duet of Silent Night on my violin. (I made it a duet because I knew one of the Elders could play the violin and he has managed to be in this area of 6 months and not tell anyone so I personally took it upon myself to not allow him to hide his talents under a bushel.) I think he really
doesn't like me now but we played beautifully......I later volunteered us to play for Christmas Conference which is this Thursday...heee hee heee!!!!! I'm soooooo clever! I just want to help him achieve his potential. Anyways, it was beautiful. I loved it. I play very poorly now at this point in my life but God allows me opportunities to not lose this gift completely.
I got a beautiful package full of Justin Bieber things from my dearest Sister DELeON! Oh how I love thee. Te amo hermana. Me extrango mucho. No se como poner los (enyays--yeah sound it out) en espanol. Lo siento. Es un juego. :) Voy a escribirle muy pronto.  Espero que tu tengas trabajo. Estoy oracionando para ti. Oh te amo hermana!!!!
Tambien fue muy bien oir de mi hermana Lauren (KiKi) Keller!!!! te amo mucho!!!!!!!! oh man. I just feel like I am an alien. I just have no idea what is going on with anything but I hope and pray for you always. You are beautiful. Thanks for keeping me up with  everything.
I love hearing all about it. I go to my parents for everything so please feel free to do the same :)

soooooo ready to hear my fate as of last night?!!!!!!!!!!!! I was sooooo excited because we heard from President which meant only one thing: I WAS BEING DOUBLED OUT AND GOING TO RIVERSIDE WHERE I COULD SPEAK SPANISH ALL DAY LONG AND LOVE TO EAT TOMALES AND BEANS AND RICE AND TODAS LAS COSAS....................pero.......................
I AM TRAINING AGAIN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!




OK for realsies I'm better. Yes I am training again. I get her on Wednesday this week. I am not as scared as I am for the previous one but what is President thinking?!!! I am not a good trainer! In fact I am quite terrible. I enjoy working with people that know what they are
doing. I guess I need to humble myself and love her with all the heart that I have left in me.
Oh mis feelings are just...."oh booooyyy here we go again!" But I just love the adventure that is every day in the mission. I love Sister Hopkins so I really don't want to change but change must happen in order to progress. I read that in a conference
talk the other day....ouch. I am slowly trying to embrace that.
So I have to admit something......I got y'all's packages today. THANKS Y'ALL SOOOO MUCH. i peaked a little. :) don't be mad OK?  I just was soexcited to hear from my family and was hoping maybe there was a letteror something but there happened to be something better than
BANGARANG MOMMY!!!  Thanks y'all so much for taking those. I was hoping for some more....but.....I'm just kidding. I'm a brat. I am very blessed and i started to tear up when i saw all the smiling faces of my family looking at me. OH how i miss y'all so much. I didn't open up
anything else or the packages or nothin but i  did get the pictures. HOLY MARGARET!@ YOU ARE SOOOO BIG!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! STOP GROWING UP THIS INSTANT YOU HEAR!!!!!!!!!!! MOM AND DAD YOU LOOK BEAUTIFUL!!!!!!!!!!!! Y'ALL HAVE LOST WEIGHT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! WELL DONE. now I'm terrified to send y'all pictures of me....hahahaha oh well. I've grown too. :) hee hee. I am just so overwhelmed with seeing y'all I am just on cloud nine.
thanks y'all for sending those.
Life is good. Nothing too crazy is happening but we will be talkin to y'all this week. How weird is that? I hope y'all just know how much I miss and love y'all so much. I'm heart broken to hear about Kelly. I am truly so sad. God may need her music and her amazing spirit to bless
the masses in Heaven. She is just that good. One day I want to be that good....I will. I just am heartbroken but God knows best. I love y'all. Live every day like its your last. Love every moment and everyone in those moments. That is how y'all will find the greatest happiness. Choose to love. Choose to look up. :) Life is beautiful...even the rainy days.
Love y'all con todo mi corazon.
Hermana Sarah Cate Sorensen

p.s. I heard y'all have temps in the teens.....yikes. Glad I'm not
there!! 50's -70's this week. boooyaaa!! haha Texas loves y'all.

Libbi: Rain, Conference, oh and Christmas too. :)

Hello All,
 Christmas is coming and the Cuiabá Sun is getting hot. I am extremely excited for the opportunity to talk with you.  I am learning a lot here in this area. I am constantly being stretched and tested and through this process I am learning a lot. I am so very blessed to have this experience and growth in my life. It is truly wonderful to watch the change that occurs in the countenance of a person that is changing their lives because of the standards and truths of the Gospel. I love it! 
 This week we had a breakthrough with Norma and Jose. Now, I don´t remember if I even explained to you the story of them. Their 2 kids together are members and her other child that lives in the house in front of theirs is also a recent convert. She has never been very receptive with the missionaries but now she has totally opened up and is reading, praying and came to church this week! Jose is extremely Catholic but the only reason he didn´t come to church this week was because they needed someone to say in the house because they can´t all leave at once. We had lunch in their house today and have already confirmed that they will come to church this Christmas Sunday! Right now, this is the breakthrough in our area...I love this family and I´m loving the changes I´m seeing.
 I am so happy to celebrate the birth of our Savior. What a happy day...the day of the start of our salvation. I want to share my testimony with you that Jesus is the Christ, that he lived on this earth and he lives still in a glorified and perfect body. That he suffered and died for us and overcame death so we can be saved and return to our loving Heavenly Father. He wants ALL his children to return to him and thanks to our Savior we have a path home to our Father and God. I love this time of year but what I love more is that we can live and feel this spirit everyday. Share this glad message with on of your friend...have the courage to give them the knowledge of salvation! It is real! It is happy! It will change you and your friends life! Seek truth in all thing and I know the Holy Ghost will testify the truth of all things unto you.
 I love you all more than I can express in any language or action. I think of each of you daily and want so much for you success in all things. CTR....and spread the good news of our Saviors birth, life, and gospel! Have a wonderful Christmas and know that I love you.
com amor,
Sua Sister em Brasil 

Sarah Cate: Figuring it out

Dearest family

Well this week....I guess I gained a testimony this week of why President only tells us a day or two before we are transferred (and I know in many other missions its just like a 24 hour notice type of thing but the TSAM is my mission so that's what we're going off of). Knowing for almost two weeks now that Sister Jones is leaving has been one of the most interesting instances on my mission. I realized that this last week I have had such a hard time with her going home because it has made me think about MY home and me going home so much that it punched me out of missionary mode and back into "selfish Sarah" mode. It was a dark and ugly place and I don't want to go back! --I guess all that went down about two weeks ago and at the start of last week was the healing process into becoming a missionary again. I know it sounds silly and ridiculous but it has been rough. My companion lost much of her desire to be a missionary so it became harder and harder to do missionary work. As a result I found myself swinging the opposite way and wanting to become more and more a missionary and never leave. While I understand both sides, I know that both sides are flawed. God wants balance in all things. While its good to want to be a missionary, I cannot resent my companion for her lack of desire. That is not what Christ wants us to do. If I am truly a missionary, I will be the best disciple of Christ that I know how to be. Love everyone regardless of anything. Our Heavenly Father loves us all. He doesn't love anyone more than someone else. God is not going to reward me for being a "good missionary" when I am holding ugly feelings against my companion. I have become purified in Christ. I do not have "floaties" in my figuratively clean body. If I do, I am not allowing Christ to help me. I am denying his power and his sacrifice. Who do I think I am?!
I am a missionary now. I am back to being a missionary again. Loving everyone and anything that steps in my path. I met the ugliest dog this week and I loved that dog like I haven't loved a lot of things in my life. I feel like that dog is me! Heavenly Father looks at what is on the inside and when I look, on the inside, as ugly as that dog, Heavenly Father still loves me.
 We still have very few people that we are working with. I know that this will change. I just put my shoulder to the wheel and dig deep into my pioneer stock and have faith in every footstep! I listened to some primary songs this past week and thought about the simplicity and how I have truly been taught all I need to know from such a young age.'s taken me a long while to figure that out. 
Ok sorry for my rant. That is quite enough. I am going to be covering two areas until I receive my new companera. I will be covering Barton Creek (my area) and Riverside (SPANISH AREA)!!! YAHOOOO!  I get to have about 4 days worth of Spanish. Its a blessing. I will be working with the Missionary I went on exchanges with: Sister Hopkins. I am super excited about that. She is a great missionary. She is still being trained so I'll train her  for about a week and then we'll see what adventures transfers hold. We have Transfers the 21st of December and then Christmas Conference on December 22.
We are going to have only sacrament meeting on Christmas Day and ours is at 9 in the a.m. here. (I am playing my violin during the service and as prelude music) --don't worry the ward circulated an e-mail about my "talent" and how I am supposedly a concert violinist. Oh yikes. a year of not practicing really hurts my heart and hurts my technique even more. 
 I love y'all so much. I am so sad to hear about Grandma Hymus. --sorry I can't spell the name but I love her very very much. I cried when I heard about Grandpa. I think about all y'all a lot. Oh please give them loves and hugs when y'all see or talk to them. I just love them so much. God knows what is best and its the hardest when it seems like life is crashing in on you but if you allow God to lead you by the hand, he truly directs you for Good. There is so much comfort in the scriptures and learning about the people in them. God will not give you something you can't handle. He makes our burdens light. Not always in the way that we want, but in the ways that we need. God is aware. Keep in touch with him and he will bless you. Build that relationship.
 I love y'all so much. I miss ya even more. This was a very "missionary" e-mail. yahoo. Heavenly Father and Jesus love you. If you don't know that, just ask them.
 Dad- are we related to a  Rasmus Krogh Sorensen...born in 1880? If so, I found some cousins....surprise surprise!

les amo mucho y les extranio tambien. Tengan salude y esfuerza y perseverar hasta el fin!!! 

Libbi: "O Meo Brasil"

Oh´s everyone doing? Life is good here in Cuíaba and I continue to learn a lot...about peole, life, and this perfectly wonderful Gospel. This week was work...lots of work. We met a lot of new people but the difficulty now is finding them at home when we pass by and teaching. This week I learned a lot about myself and how I can personally be a better tool in the Lord´s hands. I asked a young boy if his brother was in prison instead of asking him if he got a job...good stuff I am still learning this language also. Yesterday I officially celebrated 7 months on the mission. Wow, time just keeps passing faster and faster. Sarah...are you freaking out that you almost have a year?! Whoa your old. haha How is the holiday season..I seriously haven´t thought about it is like everyone else is celebrating but the work and routinue of the missionaries continues uninterrupted. But, the part that I love is that I have already been feeling this same Chirstmas Spirit for 7 months now because everday I´m teaching and watching the change that only the power of the atonement can make in people´s lives. I LOVE MY MISSION! I LOVE THIS EXPERIENCE!
We are continually working with reactivation of people here in Industriario and we have successfully reactivated the mother of Suellen our recent convert and another family. We are working hard with a family that has a son on the mission but none of them are members. We thought what a great chirstmas present to see a picture of his family´s baptism. But, we will see...they are reading the book of Mormon and we are now trying to stress the importance of church.
I love what I´m doing and I love all of you...I wish you the best and stay true to the truths you know. Remember what is more important during this Chirstmas Season...and every season for that matter.
com amor,
Sister Sorensen

Sarah Cate: Digging Deeper...till you hit water

This past week has been particularly hard for me. My dear companion and the real reason why I was transferred from Encino Park has been struggling a lot and decided this past week that she will be leaving for home next week. I have felt like I have failed and have doubted my own abilities very much. I don't know what will become of me. There are two areas that they need Spanish speakers to train and not enough people are Spanish speaking right now. Thanks y'all for cheering me on. I think we all need cheerleaders in our lives. I have had a real opportunity to understand the Savior's atonement so much more. Its difficult to explain. The vast expanse of the Atonement is jaw-dropping. I have learned so much going through the good and the hard times that God knows us as individuals. He sends us Angels. He knows when we are at our wits end and can not go on. He allows us to feel this way because he trusts us to grow. He knows its time. Sometimes it takes us longer to understand and come around back to his loving arms. They are always outstretched to us and want us to find safety in him and if we will but trust him and his plan for us, things will always work out. Sooo much of this is so easy to say but in practice, there in is the challenge. I guess I always knew I was in Heavenly Father's arms but I never knew how big are far reaching his arms were. I also easily forget how tight Heavenly Father holds us. He doesn't loosely hold us but he holds us enough to carry us. We are the ones that push that security away.
 I will be better this week. We have yet to find an investigator here. We didn't teach ANYONE this last week. That is really hard as a missionary. It really breaks my heart and doesn't help my feelings of being inadequate. I was completely side swiped when I received a package in the mail....................MY CHRISTMAS TREE!!!!!!!! Man I am so blessed to have a family that follows the spirit and sends me something just when I thought I couldn't take any more. Y'all were my angels. I sat on the couch and cried as I pulled out all of my unique and individual ornaments. Oh they warmed my heart and soul. They made me smile and I now have them hanging up in our apartment. I took some pictures that I will try to attach. Thank you thank you thank you!! ESPECIALLY BILL AND LESLIE and their family!! Y'all are beautiful.  
 So my beautiful story happened at the beginning of the week. oooohhhhh just so y'all know, I dyed my hair and cut it. :) SURPRISE! Yeah I needed to change it and it had been bugging me for a loooooong time. Don't worry, nothing too crazy but it is now brownish red. I love it. (if I were home, I would probably go more radical red and put some blond in it) But its enough of a change. The lady that cut my hair was an adorable Vietnamese lady. She was great and I love her very much but my hair cut....well let just say I left feeling like I looked like a "very mature in years" Asian lady.  I tell you these things because when we went to paint nails at the rest home I was wheeling someone to their room after painting her nails and all of a sudden, a man started to follow me in his wheelchair--you know, scooting and shuffling his feet while in the sitting position. Well I thought it was just a coincidence until he followed me into a room and the lady said "who is that and why is he in here?!" and I said "I don't know. Hey buddy, I'm sister Sorensen. What is your name?"  and all I got was two big blue eyes staring into my soul.......uuuhhhh ok. What do I do?  so I just told the lady that we would figure it out. ---eeewwww grosss old lady fingernails.....yikes i just remembered how bad they were last week.......ok its over. Sorry. Anyways, so he followed me out of the room and then back down to the room where we paint nails. I didn't notice him there until one of the nurses asked him what he was doing there. he said "I'm waiting for her" and I said "me?!" So I ended up taking him to a room for a "men's meeting" and when I went to go, he said "I don't want you to go. You aren't leaving are you?!" oooohhh my heart broke and I wanted to say "no no no I'm staying here forever. Don't worry. " but --reality check!--- I had to paint nails and fulfill my missionary purpose. I then told him that I was coming back next Tuesday and I would see him then. Well, all this did nothing. He still would followed me and would not leave my side. Here is the punch line though everybody: This dear sweet man had a wife who volunteered painting nails. Don't worry she is about 60 years old guessed it.....ASIAN!!! yes. this dear old man confused me with his wife. wooooooooow. I love being confused with 60 year old Asian ladies. It was a tender mercy this week. hahaha I hope y'all are laughing because I am. 
 I also got to go on exchanges this week. This was another great blessing in my life. I got to serve in Riverside. This is the highest concentration of Spanish in the entire mission. I got to teach more lessons in Spanish than I ever did in Del Rio. We spoke the beautiful language of Spanish the entire day.  I loved it. I am not so good at it but I loved it. The Lord is blessing me with opportunities to speak the language I was called to serve in. I am lucky. 
 Please don't ever forget how much I love y'all. I miss y'all like crazy. Thanks for being the best family in the world. Thanks for the updates on everything and everyone. If you find yourself talking about me to someone, give them a hug from me. I love y'all beyond words. 
 Su Hermonita Sorensen

Libbi: On the First day of Christmas I GOT A KILLER AWESOME PACKAGE OF JOY!!!!!!!!

Hi fam!
 I got my Christmas package and mommy I can´t believe you sent more. I got clothes, ctr rings have been a riot and MUUUUUUUUUUUUUSSSSSSSSSSSSSIIIIIIIIIIIIIICCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCC!!!! I love love love love love the surprise in the cake mixes (great idea by the mommy´s so smart) the very first thing I heard was meg singing I know that my redeemer lives! I cried! oh meg you are so talented and never forget the words you sing with such emotion. I too know that our Savior Jesus Christ Lives and that thanks to him I have a way to return to my Father in Heaven along with every one of his children. What a blessing! What an arrangement of music...very powerful. Meg you are sincerely so talented and amazing! Keep it up girl and remember what is important when you get famous. Don´t forget to pray and read your scriptures! I have been studying all week about the importance of the scriptures in conversion and I too want to bear my testimony that scripture study is vital and our shield daily from the bullets, arrows, temptations, slyness, and gray that Satan brings. He is very real and pushing so hard to make us fall. STAND STRONG! Work hard and try to be better everyday! We will beat Satan as we do what we know is right!
WE HAD A BAPTISM THIS WEEK. Mariele who we marked a date with last week who had already gone to Church a few times with her brother who was investigated the Church was prepared and ready, baptized and confirmed a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints this week! It was wonderful. What a miracle...we confirmed with her the day of that she would....and she said that she would if she didn´t go out of town. (she had already expressed a desire to be baptized) so we prayed that she wouldn´t go out of town and she didn't! she was baptized with another young woman in the ward this week and the work continues here in Inudstriario.
We had some pretty crazy wind also here....but with the wind came rain. I have never felt so helpless walking on the street. I used all my strength with an umbrella in front of me to walk as the streets turned to rivers. The crazy part is that the next day the sun returned and it was over 90 degrees again. 
I am blessed here with extremely great leaders. My district leader is an extremely good example to me of an ideal missionary. He served over a year of his mission in Curitiba, but because of health problems was re-assigned to Cuiaba. I admire him and I´m learning a lot here!
Family...know that I love you. Know that this Church is is...for doubt in my mind. I know that we can have families forever and I´m so blessed to have you in my life. Please know that I think of you often and pray for you daily. Keep being amazing and choosing what´s right!!!
com amor,
Sister Libbi Sorensen

Friday, December 2, 2011

Sarah Cate: From Austin City Limits

I am going to be brief because its been an interesting week. I am trying very hard to connect with the people here. Everyone we meet seems like a friend from another life. People are very comfortable here. We didn't teach much this week at all. It's hard for me. My companion is just stellar. She went home on medical leave a while ago because she had a brain tumor. She is back out but her headaches are coming back. We have been praying and fasting a lot this week to figure out what the next step should be. She is quite the trooper but it is also getting pretty bad and conflicting with the work. My heart is breaking because it would seem that she might be headed home at the end of this transfer. The Lord sees fit to really have me grow and stretch this next transfer. Oh man. Keep praying for people for us to teach here and for people to progress.
Mom, I just love y'all so much.  Please keep praying for Larry L. He is stellar. Help his wife to come back to church and to soften her heart to us. I will have to explain more next week. Thanksgiving was awesome. We didn't have as many appts. as we hoped to have but we are still working hard. We ate with a newly married couple who are in their 50's. It was kind of gross because they were all over each other and it was just weird and gross and awkward... but I love them. We visited some other families that night so it was fun.
 I love hearing about how well all y'all are doing. Keep up the amazing work Meg. It's the ward and stake Christmas party this week so maybe we'll get to see some investigators there!! yahoo. Thanks y'all for y'alls prayers. Keep sendin them my way.
 I love ya.
 hna. Sorensen

Libbi: The difference between testimony and conversion

It was a serious struggle to find internet here in Industriario, Cuiabá. It was great to hear from you mommy and I´m glad to hear that everyone had a great just came and went her like any other day. I received one of my Christmas packages and I haven´t decided if I´m going to open it or not now. I am glad to hear the chickens survived the treacherous Sydney and Turkish terrorist attacks and that Ben and Rae had a good time visiting fam and friends. I´m glad to hear all went well with Brother Anderson´s funeral. It is  strange...It feels even less real (thanksgiving and holiday season) because as the temp. gets colder and colder for you it gets, believe it or not, more and more hot here in Cuiabá Brasil.
Well....this week...I learned a few more truths in my life. In Brasil there are only two volumes of music....loud and break your ear drums. I hear both everyday and normally someone in their house screaming the music equally as loud...good stuff! I learned that in our house some days we have water and other days we don´t. I learned the difference between the word picado (bite- normally insect) and pecado (sin or transgression) imagine the difference this makes in my ability to teach repentance. I learned that Elders really don´t know how to clean or maintain a house...or at least the ones that used to live in ours didn´t. Anyone preparing to serve a mission...remember when you are on a mission that other missionaries will live in your house after you keep it clean please :) We also had the confirmation of Suellen this week. We are working away in this ward...
...this week we worked a lot with less active/ inactive members in our area. We visited many and confirmed that many would come to church but unfortunately not one showed up. This was another lesson that Elder Bednar taught: The difference between testimony and conversion. Everyone that accepts the restored Gospel in their lives has a testimony however, the process of conversion takes a bit more perseverance. I am learning how to help people become converted and not simply have a testimony of the truth. I visited a returned missionary that married a non-member and he said to us that `he has a testimony but doesn´t have a desire to come to church` interesting that he used this word...testimony...I would challenge everyone within the sound of my voice to question whether you have a testimony or are truly converted...only true conversion can stand the test of time and fulfill the ever crucial part of the Gospel of Jesus Christ- to Endure To The End! How do you know if you are converted....simple things we do you pray? do you read the scriptures? do you serve others? do you go to church? how important is your family in your life? how are you bettering yourself everyday? Do you know that Jesus Christ is your Savior?
I know that Jesus is the Christ. That he suffered for all the sins of the world in a great action of love. I know that the same church that our Savior and Redeemer organized when he lived on the earth was restored by the prophet Joseph Smith. I know we have a prophet and apostles living today that lead and guide the true and restored Church of Jesus Christ. I know that God ordained families and that we can have eternal families. I know that we have commandments to liberate us from sin and addiction. I know our Heavenly Father loves each and everyone of his children...because of this he gave us a plan to follow, a path to return to him. It is real. It is important...and you need to know it for yourself! Pray with a sincere heart and you too can know these things. Read the Book of Mormon...the proof of the restored gospel! Love more, Smile more, and know that a sunburned blond in Brasil is preaching this happy message with all the vigor of her heart and soul!  I love you all, be true be good be safe and stand for what´s right!
com amor,
Sister Libbi Sorensen