Monday, April 23, 2018

Hey Elder, Can we Give a Blessing to our Cat?

1. A week to remember
What a week it´s been. The mission is absolutely amazing! The church was packed this week and we had 10 investigators present, so I`m as happy as can be. We have a solid teaching group, God´s elect that He put in our path. The blessings are raining down in Santa Marta!

The funniest thing  that happened this week was a call we got from our recent converts, Roger and family, asking if they could give a blessing to their sick cat. LOL.  At least he was trying to use his priesthood, right?!

Also the water in Santa Maria got contaminated and we´re not supposed to drink it cause lot´s of people are getting sick. I chug water cause it´s hot here, but we've been blessed and everyone's okay!

2. The Spirit guides us
We really are so protected as missionaries! Last week our FHE with Luiz ended after dark, but we felt that it would be good to walk him home instead of going straight home. Well we found out that that very night a crazy man was on the street with a machete exactly on the route we would of taken home, but since we took Luiz home we didn't even pass close by!

Also on Friday a member told us that there was a job opening at a restaurant, and if we knew anybody who needed a job that he had an opening! Not 2 hours after our investigator told us he needs a job! I could clearly see the hand of the Lord helping us. Cool stuff.

Well I`m super happy with how my mission is going. I've seen lots of changes in myself and in our mission since I got here. I´m eternally grateful for this opportunity to serve my Master!

#50Days

Elder Rawson
Ether 4:18-19

Our District
Where the Magic Happens

My Study  Desk


A cool sunset



Monday, April 16, 2018

Tomorrow the Lord will do Wonders Among You

1. A great week on the job
I'm super happy with how everything is working out here in Santa Marta! This week we were happy to see Luiz and Ferreira get baptized! It was my first baptism of an elderly(70), but teaching him was a fun experience! Luiz is Alessandro´s friend who´s been coming to church for a while, and he´s excited to receive the priesthood and go to the temple with the YM next month. We have a good group of people to teach so I'm a happy missionary!

 Ferreira on his Baptism Day

Luiz on his baptism day

The Baptism

2. Surprise house checks
On Wednesday morning we were doing our daily planning when we got a knock on the door- President & Sister Louza! They did a surprise house check and interviews, and everything was in order so we were happy! I´m always inspired by President Louza and his pure desire to follow Christ and help our mission. It´s a privilege to have them as my parents for these 2 years!
All smiles with Pres. & Sister Louza after we passed our surprise apartment check!
3. Family home evening
We've been doing a lot of family nights with our members to help befriend our converts and investigators. We put up a FHE calender in the church so that´s been useful. Monday the family Borba invited Roger & Marcieles family over and Thursday Daniel & Lidiane invited Luiz over. A short message, a fun activity, and food wins the hearts of everyone!

FHE with the Borbas


FHE with Daniel
I´m incredibly grateful for the atonement of my Savior Jesus Christ. Through him we can overcome spiritual and physical death. I know that if we dedicate ourselves to study the Book of Mormon daily that the heavens will open to us!

Elder Rawson

Everybody go read 3rd Nephi 18:32 #MinisterLikeChrist


Monday, April 9, 2018

The Santa Maria Games

1.Let the games begin!
This week our zone started a competition to see who can have the most lessons, baptism invites, new investigators, people at church, etc. Everyone is fired up, cause I promised pizza for whoever wins at the end of the transfer! It´s pretty fun and is motivating everyone  to work a little harder to be a little better! On Friday we won "lessons with a member present" cause our ward provided a member to be with us for all of our 9 lessons that day! I love serving my zone and doing my best to help them reach their potentials.

2. The Work is hastening
I´m absolutely so happy with everything that´s happening right now! I've been on a spiritual high and I`m loving it. We are teaching a young man, Luiz, who's been coming to church for a while and his parents are going to let him be baptized! Also a member's dad, Ferreira, has been coming to church for a few months, but because of his old age he does not understand a lot, but his baptism was also authorized and he's pumped! Our couples are getting ready for their weddings and baptisms next month as well. The more time I spend on my mission, the more I feel that the worth of souls truly is great in the eyes of God!

I´m grateful for every minute that I have to be a missionary. Time is winding down and I´m not too excited about it... You feel things as a missionary that only God understands, and I´m going to take advantage of every moment I have! I know that this is Christ´s restored church, that we are led by a living prophet, and that anyone who doubts that can read the Book of Mormon and know for themselves.

Love,
Elder Rawson

1st Nephi 3:15

Lyfe in da hood

churrasco!!

lunch with my little friends

A water tower

Irmã Terizinha who has read the Book of Mormon 70+ times!

Tuesday, April 3, 2018

Conference - A Spiritual Treat for All

1. Revelation is real
What a general conference! I think all who watched could feel the great spirit that radiated from these inspired men! The changes that happened just confirmed to me that we have a church that has a living prophet that receives continual revelation. As he was speaking on Easter morning my heart was profoundly touched, and I know without doubt that he is God´s mouthpiece in these last days. All those who humbly listen to the teachings of these men will feel the same.
When I was at home I always laughed a bit at the talks from the leaders from other countries who have accents. It´s easy to think 'isn´t there an American who could speak instead?' but now that I`m here in Brazil I see the difference. You guys don´t know the joy these people have when they see a church leader from their country give a talk! When Elder Soares (Brazilian) was called apostle everyone was thrilled! This is a world wide church and I`m grateful to have inspired leaders!

2. The temple- a blessing for all
So we´re teaching a super cool family, Alisson and Leticia, who´ve been coming to church for a while and are getting ready for their wedding & baptism. We felt inspired to teach them about temples and ordenances for the dead, and what a great lesson it was! Leticia told us she had prayed 2 days earlier that her family and ancestors could have the same happiness as she has had learning about the Restored Gospel, and that we were an answer to her prayer.
I know the temple is chainlink between us and God, and that we need to make it our personal goal to actively participate in this glorious work!

With love,
Elder Rawson

3 Nephi 18:32 "minister like Christ" must read!

General Conference on a rainy day

an Easter selfie for y´all!:)

The best Members Ever!

Diane and Crew

My tie collection hit 36 this week

Pizza - a missionary favorite!

Seila and the crew- Great family!

Pictures I gave our recent converts. After each baptism,
I print the picture, put it in a frame, and give it to the new members.

Monday, March 26, 2018

Happily Ever After


1. A Wedding and a Super Baptism
What a week! First, I´m grateful for the thoughts and prayers of many this week, and I`m happy to say that everything worked out beautifully! Roger and Maricele got married Saturday morning and that afternoon they were baptized, as well as Diane! It truly was a miracle that everything worked out so perfectly. I've never worked and prayed so hard for something in my life, and the immense satisfaction and Spirit that I now feel makes it all worth it.  The mission is the best. being able to help them in this process was so amazing. It really was such a beautiful day.... I´ll never forget it. A family for Christ, & happily ever after for all:)

Marciele signing at her wedding

Me signing the marriage papers as a witness

The baptism

The family -- all members now!

2. Family Night with President Louza
On Monday we had another family night with President and Sister Louza! This time we brought Luis and Marilde, who are getting ready for their wedding/baptism in May. Their 13 year old son Ramiro, who was baptized last year, has been a great example to them. You can always count on your mission president to give a powerful message! It was a great night for sure.

3. Brazilian Politics
Right now Brazil is in a rough patch with political unrest. There is a lot of corruption in the government, and it´s a hot topic here. Well this week the ex president Lula, who is trying to get re elected, came to Santa Maria and had a rally right in the middle of my area! As missionaries we´re suppposed to avoid protests and rallys like this, but our area was packed with people! I even saw Lula! Ha, crazy stuff.

I´m grateful to be serving my Savior here in Santa Maria. I´ll never forget this time of my life! The joy I feel as a missionary is super extraordinary. I love it here.

Love,
Elder Rawson

Family Night with Bishop and some recent converts!

Selfie with Diane, her sister, and her Dad

Our pet puppy (kinda) who lives  in the house below us

Cooking Xis with Alessandro 

Baptism of Roger and Marciele
FHE with Luis, Marilde, and Ramiro!
Sunset Selfi
The newlyweds after the wedding
Roger and Maricele´s wedding and the members who came to support!
Our District full of gringos

Monday, March 19, 2018

Let´s get Married Folks!

HELLO FAMILY AND FRIENDS!

1. Planning Weddings
So the highlight of our week was for sure marking 3 weddings with people we are teaching! Here in Brazil nobody gets legally married, they just start living together, so to prepare to get baptized you have to follow the slightly complicated legal process. We've been working hard and we have 3 marked! This Saturday Roger and Maricele will get married and baptized so that will be a huge victory! I've been teaching them for a while now and we've fought various difficulties to get here. There´s not a better feeling for a missionary than to see your investigators trust in Christ and apply repentance so that they can be baptized. Their son Kauan was baptized in January, so this will be the first complete family that I was able to teach and baptize! Miracles everywhere.

 get ready for our investigators'  baptism
2. Crazy Brazil rainstorms
So twice this week I passed through a strange experience. We were walking on the street on a normal sunny day with a few clouds in the sky and all of a sudden it started DUMPING rain! I was confused cause it was sunny, but in 10 minutes it passed. It rained just enough to wet us down for the rest of the day:)

I´m so very grateful to be here in Santa Maria on my mission, serving the people of Brazil. The pure love that I feel for this people is not something I can describe with words, only something that Christ can put into our hearts. I´m grateful to have this chance to come to know my Savior.

Love you all!!
Elder Rawson

 I´m in love with Açaí <3

District meeting with President & Sister Louza

walking home after a good days work

Pday lunch with Alessandro (greatest member ever)



Monday, March 12, 2018

Give it The Gas

 1. Daniel´s baptism
This week's highlight was the baptism of a little kid we've been teaching, Daniel. His family was less active and we're helping them come back. It's different teaching Primary- aged kids, but he's the man. Irmão Alessandro, the best member missionary ever, baptized him and is taking care of him! We've been working closely with the members and our ward mission leader and things are working out well! Happy day.
Daniel with invitation to his baptism

Daniel's family

Daniel's baptism
10th Birthday/ Post-Baptism party for Daniel

Elder Silva & Elder Rawson celebrating Daniel's 10th birthday
2. God immediately blesses us when we do what´s right!
We are also teaching Alessandro´s brother, Alisson, and his wife Leticia. Alisson was baptized in another city and when he came to Santa Maria stopped going to  church. But we visited them and promised them that if they would go to church God would bless their family! So Alisson, Leticia, and their cute little daughter all came to church! Well, the very next day Alisson got a call for a job interview and he got the job! He was unemployed so it was a HUGE blessing in their life! They recognized this as an answer from God and they're going to always come! They also accepted our help to get them legally married so Leticia can get baptized! I´m so happy to know that God will can bless us spiritually and physically (Mosiah 2:41) when we are obedient!

3. Give it the gas Elder!
Well, my time in Brazil is ticking down... Just when you finally figure out how to be an effective missionary and speak the language it´s time to go home! The second half of my mission has really changed me. I´m just grateful to be here and I´m going to do my best for these last months!

Love you all! Read 3 Nephi 4:33

Elder Rawson

P.S.  Please pray for Roger and Marciele.  Their wedding is marked for next Saturday, the 24th, and if Roger can stop smoking they'll both be baptized after!  We also have a baptism date with Diane for the same day . . .

And please thank God for the great saints of Brazil and all they've done to help me and this great work.

study selfie
that day it was so hot and I was so sweaty
 I just laid on the floor by the fan instead of my bed

my fav Elder Mckinley