Thursday, December 18, 2014


Hello, everyone!

I have literally no time to write an e-mail today, and I probably won't write another e-mail next week, so I'll just see you all when I get home!

Sorry I don't have time to write a well thought out sentimental e-mail, but I just want to bare my testimony that I know that this Church is true! This is the Lord's work, and this is the only path that leads to happiness in this life and eternal life in the life to come!

I love you all so much and will see you on Friday!

18 days ... (December 1)

Hello, everyone!

So, this week was crazy pants! My new companion (companion #16) is sister Lusk! She goes home THE SAME DAY AS ME! This is not good for trunkiness! I served in the same zone as sister Lusk in Tennessee, and now we're companions here in Brazil in our last 3 weeks of our mission. Who would've thought?!

So it's been kind of interesting, because we don't have a ton of investigators, (our only progressing investigator was baptized) and the President is going to temporarily close our area in 3 weeks. So, after some careful consideration and prayer, we decided to focus on working with less actives. We have a ward list that is 27 pages long, and at church frequency is less than 100 people. So, there are a LOT of less actives and completely inactives. The bishop was happy when we told him we were going to try to contact all of the people on our ward list to see who moved, who is interested in coming back to church, and in the process find new investigators.

Alex gave a referral a while back for a woman named Luciana. We've been trying to teach her for a while, but it's been kind of hard to find her at home. But, we were able to meet with her this week, and teach her, and she really wants to be baptized. She said that she wants the peace she can see that we have, and that she wants to start a new life. She's super great! We made plans to pick her up for church on Sunday and everything. On Sunday morning, we called her to see if she was ready for us to come pick her up, and she said that she wasn't feeling well and wasn't going to come. We were disappointed, because we knew how much good it would do for her to come to church. Half way through sacrament meeting, a member tapped my shoulder and said there was a visitor in the back of the chapel. It was Luciana! She decided that she wanted to come, and she got dressed, and made it on her own! The sacrament talks were exactly what she needed to hear, and it was awesome!

Yesterday, Alex received the Aaronic Priesthood, and he was so excited! He was the first one at church yesterday! He's awesome!

Our zone leader called us yesterday to tell us that our P-day next week will be moved to FRIDAY! We're going to go ELEVEN DAYS WITHOUT P-DAY!!!! Sister Lusk and I are going to die. After almost 18 months of missionary-ing we're just tired! It's going to be a struggle, but everything will work out! (so my next e-mail will be Friday, Dec 12).
Being a missionary rocks. I'm really going to miss it!

much love,
Sister Pennington

tá doido! (November 24)

Hello everyone!

So this week was great! Alex was baptized! It was super awesome sauce! We followed up carefully with him this entire week, and he was able to quit smoking and was so excited to be able to be baptized! Also, I've already lost 3 kilos! Wahoo!
Alex was baptized!!
We had some trouble filling up the font. When we turned on the water, and GIANT COCKROACH came out of the faucet! Minha nossa! Because we're just 2 wimpy girls, we spent about 30 minutes trying to muster up the courage to kill it. Afterwards, we left the font running, while we left to do some work. A member of the bishopric told us that it took about 2 hours to fill up. We left the water running for just a little bit longer than an hour, and by the time that we got there, the water had already started to overflow and spill all over the chapel. There's no way to unplug the drain and then replug it without getting completely soaking, so we got buckets and started to bail the water out of the font. It certainly was an adventure :)

In the end, and what's actually important, Alex was able to finally take this step that he had been wanting to take for so long. It was a great baptismal service, and without a doubt, he felt the spirit!

Things are going great here, we're gaining the members' trust, and we're even getting a lot more referrals than we had in the past! Sister Carranza and I work awesome together, and I love her to bits and pieces. And, as I have learned from almost 18 months of missionary experience, the Lord never lets us get too comfortable. Sister Carranza will be transferred tomorrow, and I'll finish up my 3 more weeks of missionary service with another sister.

I was very surprised and saddened that Sister Carranza will be leaving, but I suppose that it's just one more experience to grow.

I love all of you to bits and pieces, and hope that your week is a wonderful one! Happy Thanksgiving!

Sister Pennington

1 more month! (November 18)


Yet another great week!

We didn't have P-day yesterday because of our interviews with the mission President, so we have P-day today! It's going to be a great one!

We have some great investigators who have lots of potential, but the areas we're working in are pretty far from where the members of the ward live. We're trying hard to work with the members, so we're going to start working more in the areas where they live. We're going to do some exploring this week, it seems. It's going to be great!
Sister Pennington and her companion
We found a cool investigator this week named Cenida. She's  member of the Congregação Cristã no Brasil, which is a really strict evangelical church, and it's part of their church doctrine that women can't cut their hair. The funny part is that Cenida cuts hair for a living. #irony

We have an adorable investigator, Lavinha, who's 9 years old, and the niece of the Relief Society president here. She loves to read the Book of Mormon, and she's super smart! She remembers everything about the story of Nephi and Lehi and it's just stinkin' adorable. I think I'll just teach children for the rest of my mission. They just get it!
Sister Pennington being silly ;)
Alex was not baptized this week. But, we made some goals with him, and some specific plans, and we announced his baptism for Saturday to the entire ward. I really have faith in him that he will be able to be baptized this Saturday, but even if he doesn't I know for sure that we did our part. Last week we went to his house every single day, tried to help prepare him, and we're going to do the same thing this week. We prayed and fasted and studied and prayed some more for this guy. One of the things that I've learned on my mission, is the value of just 1. The Good Shepherd truly leaves the ninety and nine in the search of the one. I feel honored to be enlisted in that search.

I love this gospel, and I love being a missionary!

Até logo!
Sister Pennington

Monday, November 10, 2014

A wonderfual week in Jaguariúna (November 10)

Hello, everyone!

We had yet another wonderful week here in Jaguariúna!

A fantastic member fixed our shower for us, so luckily the bucket shower situation has been resolved. But, on Friday we found the evidence of rat in our house, so we cleaned everything from top to bottom in search of this creature, and we found his home (behind the washing machine), but he was not present...will have to find him later...

We're working hard, and SUPER TIRED! I don't think I've ever been so tired in my whole life! On Saturday, we explored a new neighborhood, and tried to contact some less active members and find some new investigators. Man we were so tired by the end of the day, we had the crazy laughs and couldn't stop! We were trying to teach a less active, and we just couldn't stop laughing! But, as we know, "men are that they might have joy" :)

Alex is going to wait another week to be baptized. He has trouble with smoking, so we're trying to help him quit before his baptism. We tried EVERYTHING! But I did something this week that worked but I almost instantly regretted. I promised Alex that if he quits smoking I'll loose 4 kilos. I have trouble still with the conversion between pounds and kilos, and so it wasn't until I got home and did the math that I realized that it's almost 9 pounds! #diet #exercise #boo. BUT, Alex went 3 days in a row without smoking!!!! Wahoo! Everything is all set up for this Saturday, and we're going to stop eating 3 bowls of ice cream with our lunch!

It was a great week, and I'm just so grateful for the opportunity that I have for the next 39 days to be a full time missionary for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints! There's nothing better!

Love you all and hope you have a great week!

Sister Pennington

Monday, November 3, 2014

Ola! [November 3]

A reunion of Sister Pennington's MTC district in the bus station
Hello, my family!

So this week was CRAZY PANTS!!! We had emergency transfers in the middle of the transfer, and Sister Mitillo left! Guess who's my new companheira? Sister Carranza! We lived in the same house in Valinhos. She's AWESOME! I absolutely love this sister! She's great!

Our sketchy electrical shower is shocking us now, so we have to take bucket showers until someone can come fix it. Also, we don't have light in the bathroom, so last night I took a bucket shower by the light of a flashlight ... It was pretty rustic.

We promised an investigator if she visited the church, we would visit her church. It was interesting. There was a ceremonial dance with women in purple robes, so that was fun.

Nobody was baptized this weekend, but we marked for next week with Alex, and I think this one will work out ... We just need to go there are "quebrar as pernas dele" a little bit, as they would say here in Brazil. But, it will all work out :) We have an "investigator" who was baptized before I got here, but never went back to church, and so was never confirmed. We never found him at home, and he didn't respond to our calls, but yesterday, we went after church to visit him with the bishop, AND HE WAS HOME! We talked for a while with him and his wife (who is also a recent convert, and has stopped coming to church) and they told us their worries, and they reasons for not going back to church, and we sorted it all out, and they said that they're going to come to church on Sunday, and we marked another visit during the week. It was so cool talking with Mauricia about why she had decided to be baptized. She said that she had always wanted to be with her husband and daughter forever, but didn't know how it was going to happen. She said that when the sisters taught the plan of salvation, she just started to cry, because she understood how families could be together forever. She is so excited to prepare to go to the temple and be sealed to her family.
Sister Carranza with Cicero and Marlei
 The sky is blue. This gospel is true.

Sister Pennington

Monday, October 27, 2014

Hello! (October 27)

This week was an adventure! It was so great!

It finally rained here in São Paulo! We're still in a drought, but at least it's something!

My companion was bitten by a dog this week! (luckily it was a little one and probably didn't have rabies...but she is kind of weird, so I don't know for sure... :)

We went to the temple with an investigator! It was awesome! He's been taught for a long time, and he's had several baptismal dates that have fallen through, but we were teaching him about the atonement in the temple, and invited him to be baptized this Saturday, and he said that he really wanted to, and he knows that the gospel is true and "can't run anymore".  Haha - I love being a missionary! Investigators are great!

We're have a bunch of really promising investigators! We have 2 baptisms marked for this Saturday, and 3 confirmations for this Sunday! It's going to be a real busy week!
Bishop Antonio and his family (Valinhos)
We had lunch with a member this week, Anderson, who is awesome. He absolutely LOVES missionary work! His son is currently serving a mission in Rio de Janeiro. He was talking to us during lunch about how much he loves having us in his home because it makes him miss his son just a little bit less. He said that the absolute greatest sacrifice that he has ever made for the gospel was that of letting his son serve a mission.

I know that for some of you, (mom and dad) it's been tough to have me gone, but I just wanted to thank all of you for allowing me this opportunity. I've never had a greater honor in all my life than to wear the badge with the name of Christ on my chest. I love being a missionary

Sister Pennington