Thursday, 23 June 2016

February 2016 - think with 'Holy Eyes'

2 February 2016


Okay...hands down this week was the CRAZIEST WEEK of my mission/life.
Like it was so dramatic….at times I think I need that 'GoPro' strapped to my head to show what happened in my day.

This week was the week filled with the most miracles and the most trials of my whole mission. “by the trial of your faith…”


Okay… so last Sunday, being Missionaries we were asked to teach Sunday School for the youth… In this class we discovered that there was a young women aged girl named Isabelle who has been visiting for 3 weeks who isn’t baptised..
(Since we both opened this area, it's so hard to know who is who and who isn’t a member or even in our ward since there at two wards here at the same time).

When you have a non-member visit church you make sure you get that address ;) anyways Isabelle was so warm to us and told us that we could visit and that she is liking our church but she has her own religion ect. 

On Tuesday we went to Isabelle’s house FASTING, and we were so confident that through our obedience we could see a miracle. We taught about Jesus Christ and his baptism and asked Isabelle how she shows her love for Jesus Christ and how she wants to follow him? Ect ect, it was such a spiritual lesson, she pretty much taught herself. Then we committed to her to be baptised for that SATURDAY (in like 4 days)…that perfect silence after you invite someone to be baptised is so perfect, like so nervous but being filled with the spirit.


We then spent this whole week teaching her all the lessons (and she lives a million miles away, hehe) and preparing a baptism. Goodness, there were so many problems with her baptism and since we don’t even have a Bishop it was soooo complicated, but long story short, SHE WAS BAPTISED in a different chapel, the stake centre here that is so fancy pancyyyyyyyyyyyyyy! it was hands down the most spiritual service of my mission. 

Baptism of Isabelle

Wednesday: We had so much to do!!!!!! So many appointments, but none of them were close to each other. Haha, but since we fasted Tueday with no water and we walked the whole day in 40 degrees heat, Sister Curtis had the worst migraine but we still tried and walked to this mad important new investigator LUCIA.  We nearly got to her house which is a 40 min walk and Sister Curtis was dying! Awwwww daughter <3 <3, sorrrrrrry.  So she rested, ate food and slept it off so we could work later in the afternoon.

We did teach Lucia after and wowowowoowow, she’s so golden, she's a firefighter. HOW COOL but she works at lot of Sunday's so it’s going to be tricky to get her to church but she’s wants to go and promised she will get the next Sunday off.

Thursday: KARMA hit and I woke up at 4am vomiting my head off… NOOOOOOOOOOOo PORQUE?????? I’ve never prayed so hard in my life, for strength to continue the Lord's work for this day. So I causally threw my guts out while Sister Curtis studied, then I showered and continued our day. I knew that maybe it wasn’t a 100% smart idea to work but this week we didn’t have time to stop and be sick…
LOL after I stopped throwing my guts up we went to lunch, and for lunch was a Brazilian dish name Feijoada (google it )which is THE BEST but probably the worst thing you could eat after been sick, but I kept it down <3 <3

We saw so many miracles that day, we had the most spiritual experience in one of our lesson with our investigator Marina, we committed Cristina to baptism (this Sunday) and also had heaps of good lessons with Marli and Victor, a Mother and son we found on our first week here, and taught Isabelle 4 lessons in one. We couldn’t even believe our day! But the most interesting part was at exactly 9:30pm that night I starting feeling so off again. But how crazy grateful I am that Heavenly Father answered my prayer and I was able to have enough strength and health to work that day!!!! (….and to eat Feijoada hehehe)

The rest of the week was just as dramatic as the start, from getting so lost looking for an address in the jungle-ish part of our area, then praying, then out of nowhere a 10 year old child appears and takes us to Cristinas house. WHAT THE MIRICLE??? 

To then leaving early Sunday morning to meet our investigators to walk to church with us… once we got to their houses all of them had excuses, so we went to church maybe 2% sad when next minute, this guy who we had talked to on the street the night before randomly decided to come to church, and two other people come to church to ask us about our English class!!!!

I don’t even know if what I’m saying makes sense?? Like this honestly was such a crazy week, A HARD week but also the best week of my Mission. I’m so grateful for my calling and the opportunity I have to be a Missionary here in Ribeirão Pires and to help people here realise their true potential, how there is a plan of happiness that God himself created for their lives. But more importantly I’m so grateful that every day through the good, hard and plane crazy times, I get to know my Saviour Jesus Christ a little more.

Sister Bennallack xxxxxxxx

10 February 2016


First thing is,  <3 <3 Oh my gosh! It was so good seeing Tom and Jordan yesterday. I was so nervous/ EXCITED and when I saw him, I literally couldn't even talk in English! hahahah! oh my gosh! I don't even speak English anymore, hahahaha! so awkward!

My brother Tom and his wife Jordan

Eating beans and rice together!
It was just the best afternoon, I literally couldnt stop smiling. We met at the mission office because I really wanted Tom and Jordan to meet President and Sister Broadbent which they did and ahhhh, it was so lovely. But I tripped out to the max, like every two seconds, it was like two worlds mixed into one. 

My mission and Brasil mixed with my Australian family. BUT IT WAS THE BEST.
We ate lunch at the shopping mall that we aren't normally allowed to enter but President told us to eat there, haha and I was SO HAPPY teaching Tom and Jordan about Brazilian food, heheheh all of us eating Rice and Beans together <3 <3 so happy.
A suitcase of goodies from home...
How much do I just love my family!! l am so grateful right now and it was so cool catching up and hearing the family news and seeing photos of everyone. 

Okay this week, was such a good week but kinda disapointing as well, but still a goodie. Normal as a missionary, that hectic up and down emotions of highs and lows. So Cristina didn't get baptised on Sunday, we prepared her all week, she had stopped drinking coffee and we talked about her being baptised all week and how she was excited ect ect
But then, when we and the other Elders came to her house (which is a hike and half) she had disappeared? She wasn't home when we had just taught her that morning, ahhhhhhhh.. my heart broke a little. And we still haven't even been able to catch her to talk about what happened. But now that I think about it, I think it was the same with those churches in Joseph Smith's time, how they where close to God with their lips but their hearts were long from God. I think this is the same with Cristina, perhaps she likes the idea and us and the attention she received at church but I don`t think she really has felt that 'song of redeeming love……..'  like she says she prays and reads, but I don't really know.  We will pray about what to do for and about her.

So we spent the week getting ready for this nearly baptism but we also had other GREAT times with our other investigators..

I have hit my 9 months mark, 50% of my misson…what? that went so fast!!!!!!!! but what a blessing, I still have 9 more months <3 <3
Also, I finished the Book of Mormon for the first time in Portuguese this week, how I just treasure the Book of Mormon!!

Com Amor, Sister Bennallack 

16 February 2016
Tuchu 20 year old sez

So, today actually isn’t p-day since tomorrow we are GOING TO THE TEMPLE <3 <3 <3

I'm so crazy excited, heehhee, early birthday present!

This was such a weird week…. Like the weirdest week ever, it seemed like we walked for days and it was so hard to find people in their houses. But we had a magical day Saturday and caught like everyone in their houses and had one of those epic perfect days <3 <3 which saved our week!!!!!

This week I learnt heaps about how Heavenly Father really has a purpose for everything!! Like we now have two new solid investigators that we found through other investigators that weren’t really progressing.

The first is Angelica, we taught her brother Fabio in the street when we were “finding” and we thought he was golden!! That is, we taught him three lessons in one since he was so excited and asked about so many things, but then….he was NEVER home. Like, never, ever, ever, treverrrrrrrr
Sad. But through this we met Angelica, his sister, who would also answer the door.  She was always heaps nice but we didn’t ever really think about it much since we were always so focused on teaching Fabio. But then one night while planning we randomly (zero percent random, that spirit guiding us, hehe) planned to visit her and not her brother. We taught her the next day and she is progressing so fast and went to church yesterday!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

The bigger picture, we have to think with holy eyes, like God's eyes and not only what makes sense to us.

The next is a FAMILY we are teaching, <3333333333 love 
We found Andrea through one of our RICH investigators Aline who we found knocking doors.  We think that Aline really won't progress, but she just had a baby and is always home so she loves when we visit. We visited her “randomly” this one afternoon in the first time in like two weeks. When we got to her house she had heaps of visitors but since she likes us, she told us to come in. Anyways, hahah 'winner, winner, chicken dinner', we shared a message that was heaps light, cute and fluffy about God that we KNEW that everyone would love, then we got everyone's address! We didn’t stay long or even think much about it. Then one night we “randomly were knocking  in this street and remembered that we have people who live on this street. Andrea. We knocked on her door and her husband answered, she wasn’t home but he told us that she told him about us!!!! Yayaya, and that he used to learn English at the chapel with the other Elders last year. How cool, he told us to come back that weekend. And we did….! We had such a good lesson, like I could tell that they could understand my portuguese perfectly, like 100%, a gift of tongues moment, the lounge room was filled with the spirit and tears were shed. Saturday was a day of miracles.

This family still has a long way to come, but they are open to learn and when you have a open heart and a questioning mind you know what happens
MIRICLESSSSSSSSSSS (and baptisms, heheehe)

SO, I had the most dramatic thing happen yesterday… we get to church and the two wards were randomly joined together for sacrament meeting and the Stake President and the Bishop from another ward and chapel was there and we knew that something was about to go down.

Remember how I told you how my ward was pretty small…and we didn’t even have a Bishop at the moment?  Well yesterday they released our Bishop who is in America and then…

RELEASED EVERYONE ELSE. Oh, my goodness! Ward Ribeirâo Pires doesn't exist anymore!!! They took 3 wards and made 2. 
So my day got just a little bit more complicated…. 

The saddest part is the chunk of our area that 99% percent of our investigators live in is now a part of the Elders ward……………………… I could cry thinking about giving them our baptisms. So the whole meeting my mind was racing 100000 KM per hour thinking what we are going to do… like, do we stay here with the other sisters or go join the Elders with all our investigators which is a tad far????   Stress city..

But then I called President Broadbent after church, hahahah “Sister calm down, calm down!” 
hahahhhhhhh! okay 'soz' Pres.
So right now we are just going to work in our area as normal and if we have investigators that need to go to the other chapel now, we go as well and if they need to go in the other chapel we go to that ward. SO pretty much we don’t belong to a ward right now but it's kinda cool/freaky as well..
But transfers are next week and I told President yesterday how he might need to open another area in the long run to help the other Elders, so now I'm nervous but he knows how much I want to stay here and with sister Curtis :-)

SPEAKING OF WHICH, I love sister Curtis…. So since spending that afternoon with TB and speaking English for days. she's in love with the Australian accent! wooooo!
And this whole week, I've been trying to remember aussie phases to teach her but now the word 'Bogan' is in our everyday vocab….it's all Portuguese with us except when we say aussie phrases hahahahahah
"Ele é um Bogan” 

She tried all of my Australian foods and she's is the first American in the history of mankind that likes VEGEMITE <3 <3 <3 yayyayyayayay! She wasn’t sure about Milo but she loves vegemite!

“the fact that I like vegemite makes me worthy to marry an Australian” ahhahh, love her.
So she's been smashing the vegemite and I've been SMASHING the peanut butter and jam combo, how Americana of me :P

Have a GREAT WEEK everyone, AND EAT A CHEESEBURGER on my birthday in remembrance of me! haha!

Sister Bennallack 

23 February 2016

Minha nossaaaa I just had the time of my life reading all your love you sent me for my birthday hehehe, thank you so much <3 <3
Wooooooooo I have 21!!! 

Honestly, my day was GREAT, Sister Curtis made me brekkie and then at night when we returned home, I walked in to Sister Moura making me pancakes (Brazilian style, not sweet, but with cheese and beef and happiness) anyways she calls me into the kitchen and  SMASHHHHHHHH, Sister Das Graças smashes an egg on my head and then Sister Moura throws flour at me, lol pretty much was making a cake on my head…. 
Egg..and flour! 

But this means I'm officially a Brazilian since (they told me) that happens to everyone on their birthday here. But it was the surprise of my life but also the best, like I love these girls I live with so much <3

Then I showered and washed my hair 2.5 times, when I get out of the shower one of the Irmãs in the ward called me to come down stairs, when I answered the door she had a Cake and Fanta for me, awwwwww how cute!!! Felt so loved.
But during the day I did get mad homesick, like not really homesick but just thought about home for the first time in ages. But all goodz mate. Haha

No seriously I’m so happy here and I was so grateful that I got to spend my 21st birthday doing something completely selfless. It is seriously so different to what I would have done for my 21st at home, probs would have had some party or ran away to Bali with Ella, but instead I got to preach this great message and serve my God on my birthday. That I’ll always remember.
(Plus I’m in Brazil, so my life rules, hahaha)
My District celebrating my birthday after the Temple.

This week was the best with the highlight being ANGELICA!
I think I talked about her last week how we meet her because we were trying to teach her brother? She is 24 and SO prepared. We have been teaching her in another irmãs house that lives on the same street. We had such spiritual lessons with her. At times I think I might like pass out with happiness.

We had a lesson marked with her to teach the restoration and she nearly cancelled on us since she had hectic pains in her arms, but we still went to her house and when she was talking with us she agreed to come anyway. We had such a good lesson, and afterwards we asked how she felt and she told us she felt light and good. And then she us told with complete surprise how she didn’t have pains in her arm anymore!!! What a blessing.

We gave her chapters to read in the Book of Mormon and the next lesson we had with her she had already read, and when she told us she was SO HAPPY and excited. 

We invited her to be baptised but she's still a bit reserved since she has already been baptised in a different church but we prayed hard and shared a story in the Bible when the apostle Paul returns to his people and tells them to be baptised again and not only in the water but to receive the Holy Ghost. It was so perfect and the spirit was so on point. She agreed to pray about it and then went to Church with us yesterday.

SO this week since the ward changes we had to go to a different chapel, which meant she needed to take two buses (so much more complicated) But she was happy to, how much do I learn every day from my investigators, like she didn’t complain or doubt, she was there in sacrament meeting when it changed and she trusts that God wants her to go to the other chapel. AND SHE'S NOT EVEN A MEMBER!!! Ahhhhhhh that obedience. Just love her!!!
We have a date for her to be baptised this Sunday, I know she’s ready and I know that with faith and prayer, miracles happen. <3
Okay, it's soooooooo hot at the internet café place, hahaha, I'm boiling my head off!

Até next week 
Sister Bennallack

Our District before transfers..

PS. It was 'transfers' last night, but no news really because Sister Curtis and I ARE STAYING HERe TOGETHER !!! SO HAPPY!!

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