Monday, August 19, 2013

LAST E-MAIL!!! Elder Twitchell will be home Saturday

August 19, 2013

Dear family.

  Well, I can´t believe it, but the end has finally come.  I´m not sure exactly what to write you guys, because I’ll be able to tell everything in a few days.

  Yesterday, we picked up Elder Funk from Portão.  He´s going to be my replacement.  We´re going to be in a trio until I leave.  Elder Funk is a great guy, super excited.  He´s going to do great in the area.  This will make things a bit easier for Elder Morales, They´re not going to have to close our area because of me.

  I actually ate lunch with Amanda and family this last Tuesday, during exchanges in Bairro Novo, but Juvencio invited me again.  I´m going more to take pictures and say good-bye.  They´ve been so great to me.  I think besides Amanda´s family, and other missionaries, no one here knows that I’m going home this Friday.  It´s going to be a crazy week.  I know that on Wednesday, I’m going to the temple, so that´ll be good.  I´m going with everyone from my group, so I’ll see Elder Barkdull and Elder Reeves again.

  I´m about to leave to go visit Juvencio, so I’m already going to wrap things up.  I just want to say three things that I learned on my mission, of greatest importance to me.

  1)  I learned, without a doubt, that the Book of Mormon is true.  If anyone wants to get closer to God, they should read this book.  The Book of Mormon has given me the answers to questions, time and time again on the mission, and has been a great source of power in teaching others.  I know that my investigators lives have been touched, as they read the Book of Mormon.

   2)  I learned to trust in the Spirit.  I learned to invite, recognize, and follow the Spirit.  This was one of the hardest things to learn on the mission, but when I learned to recognize the Spirit and follow it with consistency in my mission, my mission transformed.  It really is worthless to work without the Spirit.

   3)  I learned to love others, even those who treat me poorly.  I think that before the mission, I really didn´t have a capacity to love anyone besides myself.  But on the mission, the Lord has helped me developed a great love for others.

  Well, I love you all lots!  I´ll see you in just a bit!


  Elder Twitchell

Monday, August 12, 2013

Last Hair Cut

August 12, 2013

Eiii family!

  Wow, I guess I’ll have to go shopping after this e-mail.  I have a lot of things to get you!  It´s hard to believe, I only have this p-day and then one more after it.  

  That’s neat that you talked to Amanda.  I´m planning on buying a present for Danilo and Amanda today, so that I can give it to them on Sunday.  I´m also going to buy a present for Wallison and Emanuelle.  I´m going to develop photos from their baptisms, and then buy a picture frame, and give it to them as a present.  

  Well, things on this end are accelerating, each and every day.  I´m trying to bear my testimony to as many people as I possibly can.  We´re still in search for new investigators to baptize, but the Lord´s chosen are out there, and we´re going to find them.  Elder Morales and I are doing great as a companionship, I feel kind of bad that I’ll have so little time with him.  The time truly is short, but during the week, I act as if I still have a lot of time left on the mission.  I´m going to continue learning, continue getting better, and continue being a leader until the moment they take my Missionary Placket away from me.

  Ben and Andrew both sent me e-mails.  Haha, I could tell just by Ben´s letter that he´s a little lost.  Andrew´s letter was great, too, it´s amazing to see the difference in him just by the letter.  However, I will say that his letter left me trunky  :/

  Wish Autumn a Happy Birthday for me!!  She´s 18 already, I can´t believe.  Her letter should be getting there soon, I sent it a couple of weeks ago.  I´m super excited to see everyone, Alicia, Bentley, Mom, Dad, family!  It´s going to be great.

  I got my hair cut today, for the last time in Brasil.  :(  But the barber was one of the most interesting barber´s I’ve ever met, he´s an old man of 63 years.  He moved to the US and lived there for 11 years.  At one point, he decided to move to Mexico, and lived there for 4 years.  He then decided that he wanted to try to cross the US-Mexican border, so he swam across the river.  He was telling me that a lot of Mexicans drown in the river, or die while they´re crossing the desert.  Hahaha, I thought it was the craziest story I’ve ever heard.  But then, his Mom called him, and told him to come back to Brasil, so he did.  What a life!

  Well, I love you all lots!  Tell everyone I said hi, but I’ll see you soon anyway.

  Just one more e-mail from me!



Monday, August 5, 2013

Leadership Council - got to see old friends

August 5, 2013

Hey Family,

  This past week was pretty fun, we had Leadership council with all of the Zone Leaders and District Leaders.  I got to see a lot of old friends--Elder Rex, Woodruff, Little, Vighetto, Edgar, Rodriguez, etc.  It´s great to see everyone, and see how they´re doing.  I don´t feel that much older as a missionary, but I feel like everyone i know is getting a lot older.  It was fun to get to know President and Sister Fernandes better.  They take our calling really seriously, and gave us a lot of guidelines in maintaining the dignity of our calling, but at the same time, they joke a lot.  Sister Fernandes told us all that we have to clean our houses more (Mom, I think you´ll be glad to know that I have, in fact, learned how to clean on the mission) and keep ourselves clean.  President Fernandes spoke a lot about obedience and Faith.

  During the week, we continued searching for new investigators.  We visited a lot of them from last week.  We´re starting to develop a good teaching group here.  It´s funny because Parigot de Souza is really similar to Bairro Novo.  Every time I get transferred, it takes a bit to adjust, because each area is pretty different one from another.  But here, I’m not so much LEARNING how the area is, but I’m REMEMBERING how it is.

  This week we were helping a less-active family come back to Church.  They were baptized recently, but stopped coming to church because they got offended.  We planned well our lesson, and brought a member with us to help us out.  It was neat, because we taught Obedience, which is a really simple principle.  However, even with such a simple principle, it turned out to be exactly what they needed to hear.  We used John 14:15 (if you love me, keep my commandments) and we invited them to come back to church.  Whereas before they didn´t want to come back, this simple scripture helped them reflect about obedience, and have the desire to keep the commandments.  It was pretty neat.

  So yeah, the area is doing well.  Elder Morales is great, he´s the best Chilean I know.  We share a lot of interests in common, such as eating rice and beans, teaching the gospel, and helping others to be baptized.  Elder Morales is a calm, thoughtful missionary who likes to teach the gospel in a loving way.  He´s helping me a lot, because I, as a missionary, am a bit more spazzy and frantic.  I´m trying to think of a pop culture reference to describe our companionship, but I am not remembering any movie that has a wise Chilean and a spazzy American together...

  The ward is doing well, they´re helping us out.  They have a lot of activities, which is great for us, because we can invited investigators.  A lot of them I kind of knew already, which is fun, Parigot de Souza is a good ward.  We had lunch with our bishop yesterday, he´s a character!  He´s way funny, I like him a lot.

  I can´t believe they changed the film in the Temple!!!  I´ll have to go check it out!  I don´t know, I kind of like the old ones, they have a special place in my heart.  But, I can´t judge, I haven´t seen the new ones yet.

  I´m planning of buying some things here in brazil so I can remember better.  I´m planning on buying a Soccer Jersey, and a Brazillian flag.  Other than that, I’m trying to think of things I can bring.  Do you guys have any ideas?  I´m planning on returning with pretty much nothing in terms of clothing (yes, all of my white shirts are going to be left behind), so I think I’ll have space. 

  Well, I’ve gotta go, but I love you lots!!!  Keep praying for me!



Monday, July 29, 2013

Porigot de Souza is a blessing!!!

July 29, 2013

Heeey family,

  Well, I guess I lost three more days of my mission.  I can´t even believe it. I really am excited to get back, and see the whole family again and get back to studying, but I’m sad to have to leave Brasil.  It´s funny, because I took for granted brazil and the people since I’ve been here, but lately I’m starting to value it all more.  It´s like what everyone says, you don´t know what you´ve got til it´s gone!  Oh well, what can you do.

  About seeing Alicia at Atlanta, I’d be fine with it, but it seems like a great Hassle on Alicia’s part.  I´m sure I’ll see Alicia soon enough.  I´d love to see her, but I think it´d be easier not to.  She´d have to get up like 3 in the morning!  haha, I love you Alicia!

  About who to invite, you can invite whoever to the homecoming.  I don´t know, I think it´d be cool to have just family at the airport.  At the home, you can invite whoever you feel comfortable inviting.  The day of the homecoming can be whichever.  You can leave my homecoming day the same day, if you´d like.  Or you can mark it on the 25th.  Maybe I’ll be tired from the flight and the mission, but it´ll be good to see everyone again, and have my mission fresh in the mind.

  One thing I DO want to leave marked is a visit to the Temple, soon after I get back.  I´m probably not going to be able to go to the Temple here in Curitiba, but I need to go at some point.  I need to account to the Lord.  Preferably the week after I get back (because I imagine that on that Saturday, I’m going to be way tired)

  Ok, lets leave this topic for now!

  Parigot de Souza is a blessing!  It´s been a crazy week.  So the Elders that were here before baptized everyone that they were teaching, so now we´re kind of starting from scratch again.  We found a LOT of new investigators, like 7 different families.  The Lord blessed us a lot this week.

  It´s weird beyond belief, returning to this place.  I´ve seen a LOT of familiar faces this week.  I saw several recent converts that I taught more than a year ago, including Amanda, Thiago, Felipe, and Vera.  Everyone that was pregnant when I left all of a sudden have a baby.  Everyone that had a baby while I was in Bairro novo all of a sudden have a toddler.  It´s been so strange.  Everyone was really excited to see me this week.  It´s fun to see everyone, but then again, I feel bad for Elder Morales, because we end up losing time at activities and at Church!  haha, I’m trying to avoid catching up with all of these friends for TOO long, but it´s fun to see them.

  Elder Morales is great!  he´s a funny Chilean, and is a great teacher.  He´s being an amazing companion, I’m sad that I’m not going to stay with him for that long.

  Well, I gotta go (it´s hard getting used to the 45 minutes again).


  Elder Twitchell

  PS Autumn should be expecting a letter, and I’ll send one more letter to the family.

Monday, July 22, 2013

Amanda, Danio and Danny

Amanda, Danio, Danny, Elder Twitchell
Avram taught Amanda when he first got to Brazil, Amanda and Danio and Danny were sealed in the temple in April, they were able to see Avram a couple of weeks ago at church. 

Elder Little, Amanda, Danio, Danny, Elder Twitchell, Netro

2 Baptisms and Transferred

July 22, 2013

Hey family!

  That’s neat that you got to go to their homecoming!!!  President and Sister Cordon were so great to me.  And yes, I recognize everyone that you took pictures with.  I can´t believe how long I’ve been out on the mission, it feels like it hasn´t been that much time. 

  So today, I’m kind of short on time, I think I’ll send a bunch of pictures so that you can see what I’ve been up to.  Today, I got TRANSFERRED.  I got transferred to Parigot de Souza, as a Zone Leader.  It´s the area next to Bairro Novo, so I pretty much know everything here already.  And I’ll be seeing Amanda and Danilo, along with everyone from Bairro Novo, every Sunday.  So that´s neat!  I´m with Elder Morales here.  He’s a Chilean, and great, although he´s kind of hard to understand, with his Chilean accent.  But I’m really excited here!  I´m not sure exactly when I’m coming home, they haven´t told me yet, but I THOUGHT that it was on the 26th.  Oh well, we´ll see.  For me, I hope it´s on the 26th, and not the 22.

  Emanuele and Wallison got baptized yesterday!!!!   Wow, it was one of the best Baptismal meetings I’ve had on the mission, the ward helped out a ton!  There was a special singing number, sung by the ward, there was cake, there was food, there was drinks.  Emanuele and Wallison liked it a lot.  Also, at the Baptismal, the ward already had chosen their Home Teachers and Visiting teachers, so they got to meet them already.  It was soooo neat.  I was pretty sad to have to leave Tatuquara, but I’m sure that Elder Rex will take care of everyone there.  Also, Elder Woodruff got called to Tatuquara.  So they´re in good hands.

  Congrats on the new callings!  I´m sure you´ll love it.  I want to do something with scouting when I get back, I think it´ll be fun.

  Ok, I’m going to send you pictures, sorry for being in a rush today!!!


  Elder Twitchell

Monday, July 15, 2013

Fun Week

July 15, 2013


  So we didn´t end up having the baptism yesterday.  Wallison´s work called him Saturday and asked him to work on Sunday.  This was the first time they called him to work on Sunday, so we weren´t even expecting it.  Emanuele didn´t want to get baptized without her husband.  So, we remarked the baptism for this next Sunday.  I´m just hoping that they don´t call him to work again.  We´re feeling pretty good about it, they both want to get baptized.  

  This week we had a ward activity for missionary work.  We got a long rope, and put it throughout the chapel.  At the end of the rope was the ´´Celestial Kingdom´´, and along the way were several temptations.  There was a room with a lot of food, a room with video games, one with a movie playing, etc..  We blindfolded them, and they had to hold on to the Rope.  When they got to one of these temptations, we let them take a peek at the temptation, and see what was there.  If they wanted, they could go, leaving the rope, but once they left, they couldn´t come back.  It was pretty funny, and a lot of ward members, and investigators ended up coming.  It actually turned out great.  I didn´t take any pictures (which is too bad!) but it was fun.

  So I thought you knew, but Elder Little is going to the same Chapel as I do!  There are two wards in our chapel, Tatuquara and Rio Bonito.  Elder Little and Elder Ritchie are assigned to Rio Bonito.

  Our week this week was fun, we found a lot of new investigators, so we´re excited.  Also, today, we´re going to go have an activity with Elder Little´s district, so that should be fun.

  It´s been a while since I’ve spoken at church, but Bishop Nascimento told me yesterday that in a couple of weeks we´d probably give a talk at church.  I love giving talks on the mission, it´s something different, and I always have something to talk about with the ward.

  Here in Curitiba, it isn´t REALLY cold, I just use the sweater for morning and at night.  I don´t know, I’m starting to think that everyone has been lying to me this whole time.  Curitiba doesn´t get all that cold.

  We had interviews with President Fernandes this week.  It was neat to talk to him.  My interview lasted like 10-15 minutes.  He asked me a bit about my family, my weak and strong points, accomplishments that I reached before the mission.  Then he wrote down the things I said.  He´s really intelligent.  He studies the scriptures like two hours per day.  Que crazy.

  I did get an E-mail from Halie, so that was nice!

  Ok, I’ve gotta run already.  I´m taking more pictures!!!



Monday, July 8, 2013

New President Fernandes

July 8, 2013

Bom Dia!

  This was a fun week, we got to meet the new mission president!  President Fernandes!  He´s the man, I’m way excited to serve with him, I think that there are going to be a lot of changes here on the mission.  President Fernandes is the second youngest mission president to be called in this wave, so he´s got all of this youthful vigor.  Not that president Cordon is old!  I feel like anything good that I say about President Fernandes is taking away from President Cordon!  What inner conflict.  But I’m super happy to be here in the Curitiba South mission, because besides having the best mission president in the world (President Cordon and President Fernandes being exactly tied for first), Elder Barkdull is still our assistant to the president.  It´s fun having him as a leader.

  President Fernandes dated sister Fernandes for like 3 months by mail, how weird!  Haha, I don´t think I could do it.  He served in the Manaus mission, and he baptized like a crazy man there, and he´s wanting to do the same here.  It´ll be interesting.  It´s kind of hard to tell right now what´s it going to be like with him, and maybe I’ll never see a lot of the changes he´ll bring.  But it´ll be neat to see.

  Transfers are coming up, but I seriously doubt that I’ll get transferred, I’ve got a lot more to do here.  We´re preparing Wallisson and Emanoeli to get baptized this week, and for sure it´ll be great, I’ll send pictures.  wallisson came to Church yesterday, after getting home at 3 in the morning from work.  He was pretty tired, but he was there, so that was great to see.  Our area is going well, too, the ward is helping us out a ton.  Especially the bishop here, he likes me a lot.  He basically obligated the whole Elders Quorum to go on visits with us.  Also, the members are starting to give us a lot of referrals.  Some members brought friends to church this week, and we marked with them to go visit them.  I feel like the work is starting to get some momentum here.  I think i have another 9 or 10 baptisms before i get home.

  Elder Rex is doing great, he´s pretty new on the mission, so he hasn´t gotten all tired or lazy like some missionaries get when they´ve been on the mission for a while.  (not me, I’m still going.  I´m in a sort of frantic, feverish state of diligence right now  :)  )  I´m enduring until the end, but unfortunately a lot of my clothes are not.  I think I’m going to come home with like two pairs of garments (and the rest are going to be burned).  My ´white´ shirts are becoming parchment yellow.  Don´t worry about my shoes.  I discovered this week that a lot of my clothes are getting mildew, because of the humidity.  Don´t worry, I’m being cleaner than I ever have been in my life, but there’s some things that laundry detergent can´t solve.  So yeah, the apartment is good, it´s just the climate here.

  This week I’ve been studying David A. Bednar´s talk, converted unto the Lord.  It´s a great talk, and it has a lot of content and information about conversion and testimony.  I´m trying to deepen my own conversion, and become a truer disciple of Jesus Christ.  Ahhh, it´s hard, because there are so many things we need to better in ourselves!

  I´m jealous that Autumn is at BYU, and hiked the Y.  Ahhhh, BYU is such a great place.  Freshman year is such a great time.  You´ve got to tell her to take advantage of every moment, because the time goes by faaaast..  It sounds like the 4th of July was fun for everyone.  Here on our end, we didn´t do anything special.  To celebrate, I drew a little American flag on all of the Teaching records I updated that night.  It was nutz.

  Well, I love you all lots.  This is the Lords work.  I don´t have any doubt about it.  I feel the Holy Ghost through me, every time I testify that the Book of Mormon is true, and that Christ established his church again in our time.



Monday, July 1, 2013

Curitiba South Mission


July 1, 2013
Hey Family!
  Well, we´re no long the Curitiba mission, with President Cordon.  We´re now the Curitiba South mission, with President Fernandes taking the wheel.  This last week, we had a last zone conference with President Cordon, where he gave us some last councils for the mission, and for life.  During his training, he focused on three things--
1) The importance of being Humble.  The Lord won´t work with us, and we won´t learn, if we´re not humble.
2)The importance of Families.  We should search for and teach families, and help them get sealed in the temple.  Build up families
3)The importance of the Book of Mormon.  It is through the Book of Mormon that conversion happens.
A lot of what he said was applied to Missionary work, but I thought that these three topics also apply to normal members, and our own lives, so I thought I’d share it with you.
We also got to learn a bit about our new mission president, and the new mission.  Our mission, before, was 15 stakes, and one district, with a total of 200 missionaries.  Our mission now has 7 stakes, two districts, and 100 missionaries.  President Fernandes is a young guy, 42 years old, and his wife is 40.  They have 5 kids (and they´re all small still!  wowow good luck).  President Fernandes is from Angola (in Africa) but lived in São Paulo most of his life, and served a mission in brazil.  His wife, Sister Fernandes, is from Portugal, and also served a mission, in Portugal.  I´m SUPER excited to get to know them.  It´ll be great.
  This week was great, Elder Rex and I found some new families, including one family which was a referral from the ward.  I like it when we teach referrals.  That Young Man is doing well, he came to Church again yesterday.  He´s preparing to go to the temple
  The family that was supposed to get baptized yesterday didn´t get baptized, but we remarked their baptismal date, and we´re helping them out to get prepared.  They´re a great couple, we´re hoping to see more progress from them.
  We´ve been forcing ourselves to work better with the members, so yesterday, we went out to visit some people with our ward Clerk, Cesar, and his 12 year old son, Renan.  Just to let you know, Cesar is my new hero.  He went with us, in the wind and the rain, without even complaining.  This, of course, being on his day off from work.  Certainly we got all wet, but he was still determined to help us out.  Way to go, Cesar!  It´s nice to see this from the members.  They´re great examples for me, after the mission.  Maybe I’ll feel like I’ve already done my part, I’ve already served my mission, when i get back, but members like Cesar inspire me to continue serving.
  A week ago, i thought I’d write a letter to Amanda and Danilo, because i knew the Elders from Bairro Novo would be at the Zone conference.  I gave it to these Elders, and they brought the letter to Amanda and Danilo.  Well, yesterday, before Church, we went to go get some investigators, and bring them to church.  The investigator´s didn´t end up coming with us, but when we got back to Church, guess who was there to visit me!?  Amanda, Danilo, they´re little son, Daniel, and Juvencio!  Ahhhh, it was so great to see them again, and catch up with them.  They’re doing great.  Daniel is way big already.  It´s hard to believe that when i got on the mission he wasn´t even born yet!  It was great to see them and catch up with them.  We took some pictures, and i told them to send these pictures to you.  Amanda likes you a lot, Mom, she said that you´re very dear!  :)
  That´s great that Autumn is loving BYU.  I remember the first few weeks were so crazy, little wonder she hasn´t called, I’m sure she´s having a blast.  Freshman year is the best year of life.  And wow, Autumn´s running into all kinds of General Authorities these days.  How fun to have the little sleepover as well.  Haha, and tell Austin and Elaina thanks for the invite to play, I'm super excited to play with dinosaurs when I get back, for sure.
  OK, I love you guys lots!  Stay true, firm, unmovable.  Keep praying for me, Elder Rex, my investigators, and President Fernandes.  I think he´ll need lots of prayers!

Monday, June 24, 2013

President Cordon's last week

June 24, 2013


  So you got to see the Missionary transmission yesterday?  We all got to go, it was fun, the whole zone was there, with a ton of youth, and ward and stake leaders.  I liked it a lot, but a lot of the things they said, especially about technology, will take a long time to get here in Brazil.  I don´t think I’ll see that many changes here.  I liked how they were focusing a lot on the MEMBERS working in missionary work.  I´m hoping that the Lord will bless me with more baptisms after the mission as well. But, for now, my responsibilities are here in Tatuquara.

  We had a lot of success with less-active members this week.  We´ve been working with a less active young-man in our ward.  Let´s call him John. (I think I should be a bit more discretionary with the names of the people I use).  Some of the youth in our ward know John from seminary, so they were excited and willing to help us out in bringing John to church.  We visited John with these youth, and we invited him to come to Church, and also to talk to the bishop at Church about going to the Temple.  Yesterday, these same youth from our ward went to go get John in the morning, and brought him to Church.  And, without any incentive on OUR part, these youth encouraged John to go talk to the Bishop.  As I was leaving the Chapel, I saw the Bishop speaking with him in his office.  I felt great about being able to help him, because like was said yesterday during the transmission, the same celebration in Heaven that comes with someone getting baptized happens when someone takes the sacrament worthily.

  Elder Rex and I have been going great this week.  We´ve been sharing ideas with each about how we can work more effectively with the members.  The focus of the transmission yesterday seemed to be on how the ward and the missionaries can work together more fully and effectively together, so we´re already making goals to involve more the ward.  It was good, because yesterday our Ward Mission Leader took us to and from the transmission, so during the car ride after, we discussed some plans to put in practice what the Prophet and Apostles taught.  It was exciting.

  There have been some political demonstrations here in Brazil this whole past week, in several cities, including Curitiba.  But you don´t need to worry about me, I’m far away from where the protests are at, the protests are more in downtown Curitiba, where there are a bunch of stores and stuff.  Everyone´s been talking about it here, and a lot of people are going to participate in these protests, including a youth from our ward (he was there at the beginning of the protests when it was peaceful.  As soon as they started getting violent, he left).  Besides everyone talking about the protests here, the work continues the same.

  This is the Last week of President Cordon.  How sad!  We do know that our new mission president is from São Paulo, but besides that, I don´t know anything about him.  I´m also not exactly sure about what´s going to change for ME next week.  But, next Thursday, we should already be having Leadership Council with him, so I’ll be able to tell you more.  I don´t think that the Temple is in our mission boundaries anymore, and I’m not sure if I get to go again.  But I think that we´ll still be able to go.  We´ll see!  Elder Barkdull is in Curitiba South, and Elder Hobbs is in Curitiba North.

  It must be hard for you guys, now, being empty-nesters.  It´s hard.  That´s exciting for Autumn, though, that she got to meet Quentin L. Cook.  But that´s a lot of pressure living with his granddaughter, she´s going to have to do everything perfect!  I´m sure that she´ll be hearing more about him.  Elder Olpin was dating Elder Holland’s granddaughter.  A lot of times she would send texts to Elder Holland, asking questions, and he would respond.  Neat, huh!?

  Well, I’ve gotta run!!!  LOVE YOU LOTS.  





Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Progress in Tatuquara

June 17, 2013

Hey family!

  I think Elder Rex likes the new area.  We made a lot of progress in Tatuquara.  We focused a lot this week in finding out which of our investigators really are willing to change and repent, and which ones are not quite willing or ready.  The reason we´re doing this is because we have a BIG teaching group, but many of these investigators we´ve been teaching a while now, and haven´t kept commitments with us.  We have stopped visiting some of them, so that we have more time to focus on new families who are ready to be baptized now.  We discovered that even though each week we were teaching the lessons we needed to, these lessons weren´t leading to baptisms, or investigators at Church.

  We´re hoping that if we focus more time on finding new families, we´ll see more progress and baptisms in our area.  This week the Lord has already blessed us with two new families.  One of these families is a new couple that is living with members in our ward.  They´re names are Wallison and Manoele, and they are doing great.  They came to church last week, but yesterday they didn´t come because the members they are living with didn´t come as well (they all woke up late.  Come on!  :P ).  However, we had a family night with them this week, which was fun.  We watched the film ´´The Restoration´´ with them, and then we ate Lasagna.  They´re also reading the Book of Mormon, which in and of itself is a miracle.  We´re way excited for them, they have a lot of potential to get baptized.  We have their baptismal date marked for 30 of June, at the end of the month.  The members they´re living with are already planning the after-baptism-party!  ;)

  Mario and Cleane are going better this week too.  Mario, unfortunately, had a relapse with alcohol, but he´s super sorry about it, and they all came to church yesterday.  This week we´re going to get everything ready so that they can get married next month.

  Elder Ryan Rex has been amazing, I think we´re going to be able to accomplish a lot this transfer.  I´m going to use the Rush Hour analogy again, but with a twist--this time, I’m playing the role of the sassy black guy, and he´s more like the Jackie Chan.  And again, just wait for the photo to see why.  I think Elder Rex´s greatest strength is study and planning.  He thinks things out beforehand, and likes to really hone in on what the investigator is needing to progress.  He´s teaching me a lot!  Also, i think out of all of my companions, he likes companionship studying the most.  The entire hour that we study together, we´re practicing.  He has just 7 months on the mission, but he´s already got this whole missionary thing down.

  In my personal study, I’ve been learning more about having Charity for investigators, and working WITH investigators instead of THROUGH them (in other words, focusing on the person, instead of the numbers).  It´s interesting, because Charity, like Faith, leads to action.  We have to be willing to work hard and make sacrifices to really have charity for our investigators.  And, a lot of the time, it´s kind of hard to really love someone you´re teaching.  It´s pretty easy to love someone when there´s no commitment, and you´re just kind of hanging out together, eating food, or playing video games.  But, when you´re calling is to invite someone to change their life and follow Christ, the relationship is a lot different.  If they´re prideful, our call to repentance is not received well.  Also, it´s a lot easier for us to see someone´s defects and flaws.  However, we have to love, love, love them, and be willing to work hard to help them with their difficulties. This kind of attitude will reflect in our teaching.  Our investigators will likely not want to go to church or get baptized, if our objective is just to show off to other missionaries.  But if our objective is sincere worry and love for them, and a true desire to help them, they´ll see that.  I´ve been trying to apply this in our teaching, and I’m seeing how it is important.

  This week was kind of funny, because on Saturday, apparently Brasil played against Japan in Soccer.  Japan lost, so since the game, everyone has been making fun of Elder Rex, because he has Japanese ancestry.  It´s been pretty funny to me, but maybe not so much for him.

  In our zone are a bunch of new trainers.  Wow, I’m way excited with all of the missionaries in the zone.  Elder Woodruff is training here, Elder Little also is in the zone, training an American named Elder Ritchie.  Elder Reeves came also, and is training a Brazilian.  There´s also two other Elders, Elder Wurdel and Elder Carvalho, both of whom are training new missionaries.  I love having new missionaries in the Zone, because they´re a lot more willing to learn and work.  Old missionaries may bring wisdom and experience to the zone, but they also bring tiredness and laziness.  The oldest people in the zone are Me and Elder Little, and neither of us are tired nor lazy, so we don´t have this problem anymore.

  Our District leaders are Elder Woodruff and Elder Little.  I feel like I can trust them :P

  Well, tell me how it is when Autumn goes to college.  I think I can safely guess that Mom´s going to start crying  :)

  LOVE YOU ALL LOTS!  Happy Father´s day to dad!


  Elder Twitchell

Monday, June 10, 2013

Curitiba South Mission

Curitiba Mission is being Split July 01, 2013 so there is a lot of excitement with what missions everyone is going to be assigned to.  Elder Twitchell will be in Curitiba South Mission
? --   Elder Little  --  Elder Twitchell  --  Elder Woodruff  --  Elder Vighetto
Avram trained 3 of these Elders

Another Friend, Elder Yesquens.  He was in my district in Bom Pastor.  He´s the best Peruvian I know

This is Elder Lake!  He´s one of the secretaries, but he´s going to stay in the Curitiba North mission.  He´s a great friend
June 10, 2013
June 10, 2013
Dear Family,
  Well, I stayed here in Tatuquara one more transfer!!!  So that means that I’m going to be in the Curitiba South mission.  Elder Rodrigues got transferred, and now I’m with an American from Washington named Elder Rex.  I´m waay excited to be with Elder Rex, I have a feeling that the Baptisms will be raining from the heavens these next couple of months.  He has been on the mission for just 5 transfers (about 7 months) and already is a Zone Leader.  I´m excited to start working with him.
  Today, during the transfer meeting, I saw a lot of familiar faces.  A lot of missionaries going home, unfortunately :(  I felt old, seeing this group of missionaries finishing the mission.  Elder Sudweeks, Elder Soares da Silva, Elder Veiga, Sister Mulhstein.  Not to mention President Cordon and Sister Cordon.  They bore their testimonies to us today, the spirit was so strong.  It was sad to see them all saying goodbye (even though President and Sister Cordon will be here for another three weeks.)  But I do have some good news.  At the transfer meeting was also Elder Little, Elder Woodruff, AND Elder Vighetto.  And each one of them is going to train!!!!!!!!  Wooohooo!  Oh man, I was suuuper happy to see this.  I feel like an accomplished trainer.  There are a TON of new missionaries coming.  Tomorrow will arrive 28 missionaries, and there are 20-30 missionaries waiting for their Visas.
  Well, this week in our area, the Lord was helping us out quite a bit.  We´ve been asking for referrals this whole transfer, and until this week we only received two or three.  But this last weekend, a few members came forward and gave us several referrals, which we´re going to visit.  It was great!  And yesterday, the members brought a new family to Church, so we got to know this new family, and we´re going to visit them during the week.  They had a lot of interest in the Book of Mormon.  That’s good, because I like to GIVE the Book of Mormon.  We´re really excited with these referrals.  It´s refreshing when the Members bring people to Church.  It reminds that we´re all working for the same goal, it´s just that we as missionaries doing it 24/7.
  Besides these referrals, we have been helping out our existing investigators this week progress for baptism.  We have a couple, Tiago and Larissa, that are going to get their Birth Certificate this week (we were waiting for them to get together money for get the certificate), and soon after we´re already going to mark the marriage.  It´s time for them to get baptized.
  We found a man this week named Aparecido, who came to Church yesterday.  He had visited the church for three months about two years ago, but stopped coming.  We found him street-contacting, and he has a lot of potential to be baptized in the coming weeks.  He´s pretty down in the dumps, because his Mother died a few months ago, and he started drinking again.  But since we started visiting him, he´s already stopped drinking. 
  So yeah, our area is doing well.  This past week I’ve been thinking a lot about integrity (partly because of a talk that Elder Woodruff gave me, from Elder Tad R. Callister about integrity), and studying about this trait.  It´s so important!  It is our spiritual and moral strength--are we steadfast and immoveable, do we do the right things even when others aren´t looking, do we stay true to our word?  I liked a statement in this talk that says that in a written contract, you can find loopholes, but in our Word should never have loopholes.  I´ve been thinking about this a lot.  How much better would the world be if we all had integrity?  There wouldn´t be people taking advantage of one another, putting on a mask of falsity, backstabbing.  They’re wouldn´t be corruption in politics, business, etc.  It´s an interesting trait to think about.
  Well, I’ve gotta go.  I hope all is well with you guys!  I´m loving the mission more every moment.  It´s not always easy, but it´s the best thing you can do.  I´m so thankful for this time I have to serve the Lord.  Stop getting sad that I’m gone, I’ll be home soon!  But I still have families that need to get baptized.

Monday, June 3, 2013

Last Interview with President Cordon

Elder Barkdull  --  Elder Twitchell  --  Elder Hobbs
Missionaries that were in his MTC Zone
Elder Twitchell with President Cordon (who goes home July 1)

Elder Twitchell  --  Elder Trevisanut (from the MTC)
June 03, 2013
BOM DIA! How is everyone doing!

Here in Tatuquara, our area has been progressing a lot. We´ve been able to work more closely with the ward this week, going on splits with our Ward Mission Leader, Eder, and the 2nd councilor in the bishopric, Serginho. We had a meeting with Eder this week as well, which helped us coordinate better with the ward. We discussed the needs of our investigators, and we received input from Eder, finding ways that the ward could help us more. With these kinds of meetings, and bringing new investigators to Church, we hope to conquer the confidence of the members. It´s always fun to remember members about their missionary obligations.

Well, this week we had Leadership council, so I got to see everyone again--Elder Little, Hobbs, Barkdull, Trevisanut, etc. The council was great, it was exactly what I needed to turn our area more effective. We learned a lot about effective teaching, using questions and adapting our teaching according to our investigators needs. Elder Rodrigues and I have been putting into practice the various principles we learned. A lot of times, when we´re teaching, there is a gap between what we´re saying, and what the investigator is understanding. We talk and talk and talk about the Plan of Salvation, Joseph Smith, the Book of Mormon, etc, but the investigator gets lost! They´ve never heard of this Mormon Bible or good ole Joe Smith before! But through questions, that gap is eliminated.

Another topic that we learned at the council was the process of marriage here in Brazil, which is something our investigators have a lot of problems with. We have to be the leaders, the light to the people that we teach, so we have to help them, by the hand, to make these big steps in life. The same night after the Council, we visited Mario and Cleane, a family that we´ve been teaching for a while. We sat down with them, explained the whole process of marriage, and we got all of the documents that we needed. We told them that we would make the call to get their birth certificate, and set specific dates for our plans. I think that we scared them a little bit, being so direct and effective. But they could see that we were there to help them get baptized, and they immediately got excited about getting married and baptized again.

I had my last interview with President Cordon this week which was great! I took advantage, and talked a LOT with him! He also redid my Temple recommend. It´s valid until three months after I finish the mission. I also asked him what advice he would give me, if I was going home right now (because my LAST interview will be with another mission president, so it won´t be the same. I wanted to know what President Cordon would tell me). He told me to focus on 5 things after the mission, and if I focused on these things, I’d be happy. These five things are:

1)Temple Marriage! Don´t procrastinate

2)Temple Attendance! Less than once a month probably isn´t good. Also, I have a temple really close to me in Provo, so I don´t have an excuse

3)Education! Don´t put it off.

4)Calling! Don´t ever be without a calling. My first Sunday back, I should go to the bishop and ask for a calling.


Thank goodness I don´t have to think about ANY of this for the next few months.

I can´t think of anything funny, but I am sad that President Cordon is going home, I can´t imagine the mission without him. I took a picture with him at the Council, along with some other missionaries, just in case I don´t see them again before the mission splits.

Other questions:

Do I wish that I brought a blanket?

No, there are a lot of blankets here on the mission. I think bringing a blanket would be a waste of space in my suitcase.


I liked my Ecco slip on shoes best, because it was easier to get ready quicker. Also, if my shoes were all muddy, it was a lot easier to take them off. Whatever kind of shoe you get, be prepared to throw that shoe away, or at least switch the sole. I have yet to see a pair of shoes last the WHOLE two years.

When do I find out which mission I’ll be?

Well, the mission itself splits 1 of July, but our next transfer day is 10 of June (next week), so everyone will pretty much know which mission they´ll be in next week. According to the spirit of prophecy which is in me, I am 100% sure that I’ll be in Curitiba South, staying here in Tatuquara.

Well, I gotta run, but I love you all LOTS! Have a great week, tell me the news about the ward and family and everything! I pray for you guys everyday!



Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Book of Mormon is TRUE!!!

May 27, 2013

Hey family!

Comfirmation! Joracir got confirmed yesterday, so that was great. She came walking to church alone, which shows me that she really wants to be here. I love seeing faith in action. There is no better feeling.

The Lord was helping us out a lot this week. The last few weeks we had problems in finding new investigators, but this week we had a lot of success, and were able to teach the restoration to people who had never heard this glorious message before. We even found a couple who are LEGALLY MARRIED. That´s a miracle, because since I’ve arrived in Tatuquara, I haven´t met anyone who was legally married. Their names are Claudio and Adriana, and they have a son, Tiago, who is 9 years old. They were a referral from some recent-converts in the ward, which was great. It reminds me that one of the best sources of referrals in the ward are the Recent converts. We were able to teach this family about the Restoration and the Book of Mormon yesterday night, and it was a really spiritual lesson. We invited them to be baptized, and although hesitant, they accepted to prepare themselves for baptism.
This week, besides focusing on finding new investigators, we were teaching a 9-year-old named Richard. His dad, Alexandre, is a less-active member who we´re reactivating. His mom, Adriana, isn´t a member, but is interested in the Church. The only problem (besides gaining a testimony, which we´re working on!) is she needs to get married to Alexandre. Richard, however, is already living all that he needs to, in order to get baptized. We spent the week teaching him everything, but he was feeling unprepared for baptism this week, so we marked his baptismal date for this next week. He´s really, really shy, so a lot of times he doesn´t say how he really is feeling. We´re going to try to get him to play Soccer with the other kids in the ward, so that maybe he´ll open himself up a bit more to the Church.

What was a funny experience this week? Well, it wasn´t really an experience, but Elder Rodrigues and I found a Church close to the our Chapel here called ´´Evangelical Church: Jesus Christ, path to the Restoration´´. We thought it was great, because it was like a signpost. Yes, Brazilians, you are on the path to the Restored Church.

Well, we´re going to have interviews with the president this week, for the last time. I´m excited and sad at the same time. President Cordon has been the best for me. I won´t be surprised when he gets called as a 70.

I had a great experience with the Book of Mormon this week. The invite found in Moroni 10:3-5 is not applicable only to investigators--we as members should ask for a confirmation, frequently, if the Book of Mormon is true. This week, I finished the Book of Mormon again. I fasted, with the specific purpose of asking if the Book of Mormon is true. It is. I know it. It´s such a comfort to know this. Joseph Smith really is a prophet, and this Church really is true. I know that the promise in Moroni 10 can be fulfilled in our lives.
Well, I love you all lots!!! Have a great week. Oh, and congrats to Autumn, when she graduates from High School and Seminary!