Wednesday, July 12, 2017

July 10, 2017

Hello everyone! It has been a while since I have written a weekly letter, but everything is going GREAT! I have ONE YEAR on the mission! 

A few weeks ago my companion told me that I said ALL of the first vision out loud, in Portuguese while I was sleeping.

This last Monday I got transferred! After three incredible transfers in Ala 2, Ponta Grossa, I got transferred to a city named Castro! Eu amo Castro! The area is way bigger than all of my other areas that I have passed in so far. It is also the furthest from all of the other areas of the mission. There have been sisters here since about February so I am the third Sister ever to come to Castro! This was my first week in Castro and my companion showed us around and we met lots of the incredible members of the branch and some of our investigators!
There are three pairs of missionaries here in the area! 4 Sisters and 2 Elders. Everyday we go to lunch all together. My new companion is Sister Cunha. She is from Recife, Brazil and she is the best! I am also living with Sister Pereira (She arrived on the mission with me and lived in the same house as me my first three transfers!) I love her so much and am SO happy that we are living together again! Her companion is Sister Johnsen who is from Utah and has about 7 weeks in the field! She is super cute and is already speaking Portuguese really well! It is so great to live with these three Sisters! <3 

Here are some pictures and updates from when I was in Ala 2:

Amanda. She always came with us on visits and she is the best! 

Jeane and her family! They always helped us so much!

Last time walking past these Pinheiro Trees! 

Fabio and Elaine

Ala 2 was incredible! I was able to meet so many people and had so many amazing experiences that I will never forget! In the last few weeks that I was there I saw so many miracles. 

One day we were walking down the street and we decided to ask a women if she wanted help carrying something. She accepted and we walked with her to her house. We dropped the things off and we were talking a little about the church. She said that she had had missionaries come to her house many years ago, but for some reason they had stopped and she had never had the chance to go to church and she didnt really know how it worked. She said that she had been waiting for us! She was so thankful for our visit and was super excited to come to church with us! 

My best little friend! She always said "Sister!!! Brincar!!!" (Sister play with me!!!) 

We also had a lot of family home evenings with a family from the ward and our investigator Mateus. He is really searching and trying to find the truth! One time we were talking about how we are always connected to God whether we are aware of it or not. God knows all things and is aware of each one of us. Mateus was having a hard time feeling connected to God, but he said that he is doing everything he can to increase his faith and become closer to God. "I know I will get there one day soon!!!" -Mateus.  One day after teaching about the plan of salvation we were going to eat some cookies and one kid said "Wow I have been waiting since I was born!" Then Mateus said "Oh yeah? well I have been waiting since the Pre-Existence!!!" 

I have lots of other great experiences where I could truly see amazing miracles!!! 

Sometimes we might feel like God has left us. Just as Joseph Smith once asked "God where art thou?" when he was in Carthage Jail. Or when Jesus Christ asked "God why hast thou forsaken me?" But I can promise you that God is always waiting to help us, with arms outstretched. It is like a person who is bench pressing. When they push to their limit and can hardly lift anymore, the spotter will reach and grab the bar. The point of bench pressing is for the person to get stronger and so the spotter will not lift all of the weight. Maybe he will only lift 50 or 60 pounds of the 160. The person lifting might say "LIFT! why are you are not lifting!?" even when the spotter is lifting a great portion. Jesus Christ is always helping us lift our burdens. He may not lift ALL of our struggles from us, because the point of this life is to get stronger. We have challenges and struggles so that we can learn and grow!!! I know that God loves you and he will never leave you alone! 
Com muito amor,
Sister Hancock

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