Wednesday, November 13, 2013

madeira rocks. yup. nao preocupes.

Hey family!!

This week was lovely! we had the baptism of Eduíno, a great training and interviews with President (which of course was exactly what I needed), I had a great personal chat with Sister Flukiger, and then we had a great district conference with the district of the whole island of Madeira. There are some really amazing members here. 
One of the parts of the conference that stood out the most to me was a talk given by a 12 or 13 year old kid. He was amazing. He gave a really great talk and I feel pretty certain that he wrote it himself. A lot of the conference from Saturday had focused on doing the little things (reading the scriptures, teaching in the home to do family prayer, family home evening. ya know, the basics). They focused on family and the obligations parents have to their kids and kids to their parents and all of us as a ward family. and then we got to see what the effect of teaching in the home really has on kids. This kid gave an amazing talk. I think I learned as much or more from him as the other adult members who spoke. He picked his own topic and he told about how his mom taught him to  (and had him take) care of his grandfather when he was sick. and his grandpa couldn't really talk but he could see in his eyes that he was always really grateful. then he passed away and on the first time that he went to the temple he was able to be baptized for his grandpa. and this little kid got choked up telling this all in his own words in that moment. He had been taught and given the opportunity to develop Christ like charity and develop a relationship with his grandfather. and then taught the doctrines of temples and family history and family relationships and how temple ordinances and physically taking care of his grandpa were both equally part of following the savior's example and gospel and having his charity for those around us.
So that was cool.
Eduíno's baptism was really great too, because 1-he was super happy and brought some of his family members who we haven't been able to talk to yet, 2- because a recent converts gave all the talks and prayers and even baptized him, 3- because Sister Beard was super patient with me even as I was getting stressed and obnoxious in trying to figure out everything for the baptism. I have the best companion in the best area with some of the best members ever. :)
Also, the elders in our ward are going to have 7 baptisms next Saturday (they are freaking bosses), so we are stoked for that and I am going to be making a lot of cookies :) One of them knows Jeremy and Jonny. His name is Elder Stratford (or probably more well known to you as Sam Stratford). He's freaking legit. all that work he's doing while training. so we are going to do a lot of good in this ward this transfer. :)

Well that was kind of a lot of random info, but hopefully there was something useful in there. you guys are wonderful and I love you all. Have a great week and tell everyone that you are thankful for them and why this month (if its sincere:)
Thanksgiving! I can't wait! We'll celebrate ourselves since they don't really do that here. And then Christmas! I put up the Christmas tree sally sent and I can barely wait to open all the letters. they're all at the base of the tree in order. haha.
Well I love you all and have a really great week. 

Steph \ Sister Lofgreen

Friday, November 1, 2013

Living In Paradise--Oct 29, 2013

Hey family. Sorry for not writing yesterday I was in buses and cars and on an airplane and then on more buses and cars. And now I'm living in freaking paradise. Literally one of the best vacation spots out here on this side of the world. I am on the island Madeira, and this morning as I went running I had an ocean breeze in my face green mountains that disappear into clouds on my right and the ocean on my right. It is amazing. and on top of that I came to a great branch with an amazing companion. I am really so excited to be serving with her. in the couple of lessons that we have taught together so far I am just so excited to be serving with her. plus things and home and in planning and in pretty much everything are just chill. And on top of that I am in the same house as Sister Call, my companion (that I trained) from Viseu, who I just love with all my heart. She is going to be training this transfer (her 5th which ironically is exactly the transfer that I was in when I trained her) and the sister she will be training is portuguese. which is awesome. because it means that we are all going to be able to work on our accents. 
Here in Madeira the people have an accent that is a bit different and sometimes it throughs me off a bit. I think I can understand Portuguese really quite well at this point in my mission, but sometimes, here, things still just go right over my head. So that will be a fun adventure. I hope to be able to perfect my portuguese accent and bring along a few good impressions of the Madeiran. We'll see how it goes.

But as for this last week.....

I can't write because apparently we only have 30 min for email... so yeah..~

até proximo. 

Love you guys.
stay sweet (hotrod)

Sister Lofgreen\Steph