Monday, June 27, 2016

I Didn´t get Deported!

We received this email on June 27.

So this week I had to go to Manaus to renew my visa to not get deported back to the US. I was actually supposed to renew my visa about a month ago, but when I went to the mission office the secretaries said that there was a problem with my visa, so I would have to renew it a little later. So apparently the secretaries waited to renew it until less than a week before my visa expired. But it´s ok I didn´t get deported! hahaha. 

So as I´ve said in the past few emails we have had a group of americans visiting here in Manacapuru, and they´ve actually been doing a ton of stuff to help the missionary effort here. Somehow they have been finding several of the most golden investigators that I have met on my mission. It´s funny how we spend all of our time for two years looking for these people and this group of americans comes here and finds a bunch of them, without even speaking the language. Haha. 
So this week we had two really special baptisms, one in the Manacapuru ward and one in the Miriti ward. One is named Ulysses and the other is named Felipe. Ulysses works for the organization where the group of americans was doing their service project, and he started talking to the leader of the group, who served a mission in Fortaleza. He made friends with all of the americans and they invited him to church. So it turns out that, for many years, he has been going out into the jungle in the middle of the night to pray and ask God what religion is the "correct" religion that he should follow. He also invited his friend Felipe (who also had been praying about the same thing) to church, and he went too. So we (the four elders here in manacapuru) started teaching them. It was such a cool experience seeing a small part of their conversion to the gospel. 

It seems like we as missionaries are such a small part of peoples´ conversions. It is amazing to see just a little about how God prepares His children to receive the gospel, and how they change through the covenant of baptism and the atonement. The most fulfilling part of being on a mission is watching people change completely through the atonement of Jesus Christ. It is literally the best thing ever. The church is true!

I hope you all have the best week of your entire lives this week! I love you all!!!!!

Élder Olivier!

Sunday, June 26, 2016


This is the email we received on June 20.  

Hey everyone! This week was super good, like always. There is another group of those americans that have been here for the past few weeks for a thing called HEFY, so I´ve been practicing my english more and more, hahaha. Everyone tells me I have the "missionary accent." Nooooooooo hahaha. The americans have been finding and bringing to church a bunch of really awesome people, so my companion and I and the other companionship here have had our hands full with teaching them. Manacapuru is such an awesome area filled with tons of awesome people. Elder Fernandez and I have been working crazy hard, and hopefully we´ll have a crazy amount of success because of it. I´ve always tried to work my hardest every single day of my mission, but in the past few weeks I´ve worked the hardest I´ve ever worked. Elder Fernandez is a super super super focused missionary and he´s a really great companion. 

So this week I have like no pictures, sooooo.......sorry! next week

This week we had kind of a cool experience. We were walking all over the city to all of our appointments (all of the people that we were trying to help to be baptized this week had stopped "progressing," or in other words they stopped fulfilling commitments like going to church or reading the Book of Mormon- that happens a lot) when a 11 or 12 year old kid on the street started talking to us. He told us that he had been baptized by the missionaries a couple of years ago, and that he has an older sister that also was baptized and goes to seminary every day (by the way, seminary here is 6:00 at night, not 6:00 in the morning uggghgh). He also said that he has a younger sister who is eight years old and goes to church every week with them but hasn´t been baptized yet. My companion and I looked at each other, and thought the same thing. Bora lá (let´s go)! We visited her throughout the week and learned that she had turned eight just last week, haha. She was super excited for her baptism, and we even got her mom (who isn´t a member) to come to church and to her baptism. My testimony about working diligently has grown so much on my mission. We had worked hard all week and God blessed us with an opportunity to help a young girl to apply the gospel of Jesus Christ, being baptized.

I love you guys all so much and have a great week! tchau!

Elder Olivier!

ps the picture is of me and Elder Brito, a missionary from the other area in Manacapuru. Not my companion! haha

Visit from Elder Leal of the Seventy

Monday, June 13, 2016

Still chillin in brazil pt. 10

Here is Elder Olivier's email that he sent today!!

Hey everyone! This week was super cool! On Monday we got visited by a member of the area quorum of the seventy, Elder Leal. We didn´t have pday :( but it was super cool and spiritual. Then, on thursday, BOOM we (the missionaries close to manaus) got visited by Elder Christensen, a member of the general quorum of the seventy. He and his wife speak english and spanish, and they had a translator that translated english to portuguese, so the meeting was a mixture of english and spanish and portuguese, which was cool and kind of confusing. But it was so cool. I have a testimony that general and area authorities are literally called of God. One thing that I noticed was that the instant Elder Christensen and his wife walked into the sacrament room there was a noticeable difference in the atmosphere, kind of like a huge rush of a peaceful/calming feeling. You could tell how much they love the missionaries.

This week we went on exchanges. My companion went to an area in downtown manaus with the district leader there, and I stayed here in Manacapuru with his (the district leader´s) companion. I don´t know the area super well yet but we managed to work pretty efficiently. I surprised myself by how much I know about the area already.

Also I took pictures of two rivers this week: the blue one is the Rio Negro and the brown one is the Amazon river. Never in my life did I think I would be next to the amazon river. It´s so cool. Also, it is in fact true that if you relieve yourself in the amazon river there is a tiny fish that swims upstream and.......harms you. Scary fish.

Today we were walking around looking at the river and we saw an iguana! Crikey! Look at the size of that monster!

So these past two weeks we had some surprise visitors at our ward, a group of americans that is doing a service project here for a thing called HEFY (humanitarian EFY- which is not actually a real church program, just something some member made) where youth from the US go to a country that they choose to do humanitarian aid. Apparently a couple of groups of americans will pass here in the next few weeks. I took a picture with only a few of them, because we went with them to visit one of our recent converts. We had everyone bear there testimony about Jesus Christ, and I translated for everyone so she could understand. It was pretty cool because in the middle of it she bore her testimony too, and she has only been a member of the church for one month. 

This week we had the opportunity to baptize a girl who was (until now) the only member of her family that hadn´t been baptized yet. It is so awesome seeing how people change because of the gospel. I wouldn´t give up the chance to serve a mission for anything. I´ve been out here for 10 months, and so far it has been the craziest/hardest/best 10 months of my life. The church is true!

I hope you all have an awesome week! I love all of you!


Élder Olivier!

Tuesday, June 7, 2016

A Visit to Manaus

Elder Olivier didn't have time to send a longer email, because he was at a conference in Manaus and they were waiting in line to use computers.  We did get this email just to us from him, though!  He is adjusting well to his new area and is now serving as Zone Leader.

Elder Olivier's email:

Hi family! My week was great! It was super hectic, like always, haha. My area is super different from my last area! Mostly because it is a ward and not a branch, so a lot of the members have a lot more experience with the church and stuff. That picture on sister castro´s facebook is the mission leadership conference that my companion and I went to. I guess I didn´t say last week that right now I´m serving as a zone leader. Our zone is pretty much all of the areas from Manacapuru until part of downtown Manaus.

I don´t know what a frog tog chilly pad is. What is that?  haha. (he was responding to my (mom's) question)

The only picture I took this week was of the baptism we had on sunday. Children have to repent and be baptized too (D&C 18)! batismo!

About the line of authority: I got it and I can print it! thanks so much! 

Today we all had to go to Manaus (again!) because Elder Leal from the quorum of the 70 is doing a tour of the mission! That was super cool! He talked and we watched a really awesome video of Bruce R. McConkie talking about the atonement. So I don´t have time to write an email to everyone this week, but I´ll try to write about everything next week.

Sounds like you all had a great week! I love you all! Tchau!
Elder Olivier!


Manaus Mission Council