Monday, August 25, 2014

A Big Gash

Dear Family,

So this week was weird but good.  I finally got a new real comp.  He is my new son.  His name is Elder Wallace.  He is from the Ogden Area.  He is super sweet, and is already speaking really well, although he doesn´t understand any creole.  Haha.  So glad I already passed that phase.  More about him later.

So the week started out normal.  Thursday morning I had to go to Praia to pick up Elder Wallace, and my comp was going home, so I just got up at 5:20, got ready by myself, and then walked out of the front door alone, and then took a car and walked some more into Assomada alone.  Weird.  But, that was what they told me to do.  In Assomada, I got with Elder Drawe who is one of my good friends, and we grabbed a car to go to Praia to pick up our comps.  We had a training, and then the new missionaries came in and we hid in the back room.  When they called our names we ran out to meet our new comps.  When they called my name, I jogged energetically out and then turned to get around some chairs to go and greet him, but there was something on the floor and so I slid, and biffed it really bad, taking out a fan and a chair.  I got up quickly and then went and greeted him, but ended up thinking that I broke a rib for a few hours, but now I just have a big bruse and gash under my left arm.  Talk about first impressions.  Haha.  It is healing well though.

So Elder Wallace is fresh out of High School.  He played soccer, and did some other sweet stuff.  He teaches really well for being just out to the MTC.  He is ajusting well to cape verde, even though that transition is always a little bit rough.

On Friday for lunch the guy who owns our house who lives in France who is visiting invited us to eat with him, so we had this 5 course meal that was suuuuuuper good.  Elder Wallace didn´t really like it, because he is new, but in a month or two he will wish that he had enjoyed it more because it was delicous.  I ate soooooo much.

So the area is still struggling to get people to church, but we have 10 more people in church on average than we did when I first got here which is good.  We will keep working.  We have one investigator named Zé who is super super prepared that came to church on sunday which was good.

So this week´s spiritual thought comes from Luke 22.

Christ commanded his deciples to pray, to not enter into temptation.  That is the commandment for all of us.  Don´t sin.  Do what it takes to not sin.  Then he went and suffered for our sins.  He came back, and the deciples were sleeping.  He reproved them, and then gave them the same instruction as before with one word added.  RISE and pray, to not enter into temptation.  The commandent to not sin still existed.  They failed though.  The atonement makes possible the RISE part.  Get up.  You messed up.  You weren´t perfect, but Christ suffered for your sins.  RISE and do everything to not sin anymore.
In verses 50 and 51 talkes about the guy who had his ear cut off and then healed.

I don´t know what happened after he was healed, but I would like to think that there was a change that happened within him.  He was litterally cut down, but Christ healed him. When we get cut down in our lives, we must let Christ heal us, and then go with all the force of our hearts to be a changed person.
In Verse 53 I like how Christ says that he was always in the temple preaching, but now that the priests were in the darkness, they were laying their hands on him.  That makes me have to answer the question, Am I like them?  Do I act differently when people aren´t watching, or when people are watching?

I know that this is the True Church.
Good luck to everyone doing important stuff this week, going on missions, etc... and stuff.

Love You All
Love You Family!

Elder Sampson

Monday, August 18, 2014

A ------------->> Z

Hey Everyone!

So this week was a blast of rollercoaster rides!

1. This African Desease here has only killed about 7 or 8 people, but we are washing our hands and stuff.

2. The rain is here.  We walk wet!
The rainy season startes right now and that means that it rains frequently (4ish times a week for hours and hours).  In the not rainy season that starts in December or so, there is never rain... ever.

3. So on Wednesday this week Elder Pires went to Brazil.  I was told that I wasn´t going to get a mini missionary, so I planned and did divisions with members until saturday, when I got a call that I had 10 mins to go and meet my comp, a mini missionary from Tarrafal which is like 1 hour away to the north.  It is part of our zone.  His name is Elder Lopes.  He dosn´t know anything about missionary work, so he is learning everything the first time right, but he has a strong testimony, and good fire, and is super sincere.  He is sweet.  He will stay with me until thursday morning when my comp will get here.

4. So there was a funny experience that happened where a kid was scared of me because I was the first white person that he had seen up close.  I did a bit of magic for him, and now he isn´t afraid of white people.  Haha.  That isn´t normal.  Most people don´t think twice about white people really.  Also, I don´t do much magic here because if an elder does a lot of magic, every kid for the next few years will ask all of the missionaries for magic even if they don´t know how to do it because everyone loves magic.

5. So this week was a great learning experience.  The theme of this week was Turn To God.  Pretty much I love Elder Pires, but at the end especially, it was a bit rough for me because he was worried about leaving Cabo Verde, and people and stuff, but didn´t want to show it, and some other issues, anyways, so my fire was pretty much out by the time he left even though I will and do miss him.  I was studying by myself 3 hours every day, and stuff like that, but I didn´t have fire or energy for anything.  I decided that the theme of this week needed to be Turn To God, to use this hard part as a bounce board to a stronger conversion, and so I started studying and working and praying, but it still wasn´t good.  Finally, I got to friday morning where I had no desire to do weekly planning.  Weekly planning isn´t my favorite because it is like 2-3 hours of sitting there planning, but it is neccisary and helps a lot.  I was praying and praying, begging for help and energy, and stuff, and after a long prayer, started planning, and it started out bad.  But... slowly it got better, and by the end I wasn´t great, but I wasn´t bad and got some good revelation.  Then the next morning, becasue of that act of faith in doing weekly planning, I was blessed with exactly what the Lord knew I needed.  A comp that doesn´t know much, but that is super sincere, especially in his prayers, and has a great desire to help people and to be here.  Blessing.  The Lord knows what we need.

So, when you find trials, they are always great spring boards to Turn To God.
Take every opertunity to turn to God.

Elder Sampson

P.S. Point #1 isn´t actually truth.  It´s a lie.  No one died.  The disease isn´t here at all.  The Joys of Living on a secluded African Island in the middle of nowhere.  Actually though, a sack of cement fell on a small child the other day.  It´s okay though.  The sack was empty. :)

Thursday, August 14, 2014

A chuba ja bem (August 11, 2014)

It´s raining.  A chuba já bem.  That is creole for it´s started raining.
The rain is fantastic.  I stood out in it for like 5 mins this morning.

This week was an interesting week full of stress trying to help 3 people get baptised.  In the end, only Santinho got baptised.  José has some word of wisdom repentance process still to walk, and Nilson too, but mostly we are going to try to get his women coming to church and marry them and then baptise them both.  The probablility of a couple getting married and then baptized and then staying active in the church is much much greater than if theyt are baptised alone.

We had zone conference this week on Friday.  It was a good meeting and the food was incredible too!  It wasn´t the best zone conference that I have ever been to, but for being the second that President Mathews has ever run, it was really good. (the first he ever did was on thursday).  He made a 6 month plan until the end of the year, and this month we are working on chapters 1 and 2 of preach my gospel, teaching the doctrine of the Gospel of Christ, and the importance of the first vision and the book of mormon in the conversion of people.  It is making my teaching more and more powerful which is great.  The best thing in the world is to be used by the Lord.

So recently we had been reminded that we have to have a responsible man in every lesson with us, instead of teaching women or training female members in open spaces or outside.  Most people were a bit unhappy with that reminder, especially my comp, but we started doing better, and we saw the blessings in finding and teaching new men this week!  It was great to be blessed more by obedience.  There are so many blessings of obedience, but you have to look for the blessings instead of the restrictions.
We also had some blessings this week finding a family that is prepared to recieve the gospel, in between José´s baptisimal interview, and when we found out about his problem with the word of wisdom this week.  They have already decieded that they want to be baptised and married in the church.  Good choice.  
So, I think that was pretty much the week.  Elder Pires goes to brazil on wednesday, so I don´t know what will happen to me.  Transfers are on Sunday.  Yay!
So this week´s spiritual thought is about the Prayer of Faith.  D&C 42 14 says 
 14 And the Spirit shall be given unto you by the prayer of faith; and if ye receive not the Spirit ye shall not

The Prayer of faith is key in our lives.  There are examples of the prayer of faith scattered throughout the scriptures.  Joseph Smith, Enos, Alma in Alma 31.  When we have no fear, and only faith, and pray to the Lord willing to do anything he says without delay, even if it is the most difficult thing that we have ever done, and have the faith to know that it will be for our good, then we recieve the spirit and our entrusted with power.  The greatest blessings come in life when we we use pure and full desires to motivate us.  Then we recieve answers to our prayers, and are recieve the spirit to help others.  
The Church is true!!!

Elder Sampson

Monday, August 4, 2014


Hello Everyone!

The Church is true!

So this week we almost felt the rains down in africa, but that will probably happen this week or next.  It was blowing water this morning, but it hasn´t started to rain yet.  The rainy season is almost here though.
This week was full of many experiences.

The first is that we are working to prepare 2 men for baptism.  One struggles with coffee and alchool, and isn´t married and his women that he has a kid with who lives on another island is visiting him, and lives in his house, so he is working hard to never break the work of wisdom and law of chastity, but is winning! Please pray for him.  His name is Nilson.

The other is a guy named Santinho.  He has a gift.  He doesn´t speak portuguese, and can´t read, but he has a gift of speaking.  He is the most eloquent speaker I have ever heard that doesn´t try to speak eloquently.  It is incredible.  I wish I understood every thing he says, but I understand most of it.

So this week, President Mathews came to visit us.  He is reminding us of mission rules, and adding some other ones and a lot of missionaries aren´t super happy, but it is going to be a great experience to seek revelation in the near future, to be able to do the same kind of stuff we were doing before with a few more restrictions!  I´m glad that I have a bit of creative juices in me.

Also, President Mathews came out this week to our meeting to let on of my friends and fellow missionaries know that his mom passed away on Saturday.  After he found out, he talked to his dad and had some alone time for 2 hours, and every single person in the whole zone, even those who had to get a car to go back to their area an hour or 2 away stayed to be with him and support him.  Please pray for him.  I love you all, especially my family.  What a blessing the plan of salvation is.

So we had the most people in church yesterday since I got here in this area.  39!!!  It used to be in the 50s, but right before I got here the branch invested 5 young men to missionary service, and so the number of people dropped.  We are hoping for 42 next week.  Give me your ideas about how to help more people come to church!

Well, that was pretty much this week.  Not super eventful.  We have a zone conference this week, so the week should go by really fast.

This week´s spiritual thought comes from the Sermon on the Mount that I was studying this morning.

Everyone is invited to read the sermon on the mount this week in conjunction with chapter 16 of Jesus the Christ which talkes about the sermon on the mount.  I love reading the responses of Christ, because the way he does everything is so powerful.  Every answer to every persecution.  He truely is a perfect being.  I like 3rd Nephi 13:12 which mostly says (during the Lord´s Prayer) (mostly because I am translating it from portugese and don´t know for sure what the english verse says) And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil. (okay, I looked it up in english).  When we pray for help to avoid sin, like we should sincerely, and not vainly repetitous, we MUST do everything we can to avoid things and situations that lead us to sin.  If thine eye offend thee, pluck it out!  It is better to live without than with sin, and we must act to avoid sin, not just to be rid of it.

That´s it.
Avoid Sin

Elder Sampson

Well, the Week Flew By! (7/28/14)

So, this last week was a good week all in all!
First off, Sónia was baptised this week and confirmed.  Satan tried really hard to stop it, but we won!  God is more powerful than satan.  She and another member were teaching a lesson yesterday, and I can feel that she now has the Holy Ghost.  I believe that I would be able to tell when someone recieved the holy ghost even without knowing because, every time, there is such a diference between before and after.  Even if they have a hard time recognizing it, I can feel a difference! I attacned some pictures of the baptism, and of a spider that I took that is not related to the baptism, but it is a sweet picture.  We have those all over our house, especially in our garage, but we only go into the garage when we need to fix our water pump which happens all to often, but hasn't happened in a few weeks which is a blessing.
Another miracle of this week is with the mom of a young man.  Lito who is 14 is always with the Elders Quorum president.  They work, and do everything together.  Lito has been coming to church for a while now, but we won't baptise a 14 year old kid alone, even if he has the support of this member, because in 2 years or so, when he isn't always with this member, he can easily fall.  We taught his mom 9 weeks ago, and in the area book I have writen, She is catholic and refuses to change.  The Lord however has been changing her, and on sunday when we went back after a long long time of not talking to her, I forgot we had asked before, and asked about her religion, and she said that she doesn't have one but would like to know about the true one!  We marked her a date for baptism, and invited her to pray about Joseph Smith.  We will see how that goes this week!  It was a real blessing.
So, some people it appears are confused about my companion.  Elder Pires got his visa, but he doesn't leave until the 13th.  We still have 2 more weeks together which is good!  Keep praying for us!
Also, congrats to everyone that is almost or already out on missions as of recent!  Good luck to you all!  The Lord is ready to bless you more than you have ever been blessed before!
This week, also we had a great time doing a division with the Assistants.  I learned a lot of things, and was really blessed to do that division!

Oh Man, time is sooooo short today.
I love you all, and have a great week!

Elder Sampson
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