Monday, May 26, 2014


I just finished a meeting here in Manaus and I'm about to fly to the island of Parintins tonight to do exchanges with the Sisters there.  I heard that I'm the second companionship of Sisters to go to the island of Parintins so I'm really excited, but I'm more excited to apply the things I've learned today.  I LOVE mission trainings!  I always leave feeling 100% better and more excited to work.  The Spirit is always super strong in the mission trainings.
This week was a really good one.  I feel like I'm starting to know the area better and we are teaching some awesome people.  This week we focused in on 3 people to be baptized and everything went well.  As we were on our way to the chapel with one of our investigators to be baptized, we passed a little boy we had been teaching and his mom.  This little boy already has a sister who is a member of the church,  but the mom didn't want to let him be baptized.  We stopped to talk to them and I was shocked when she said he could be baptized that very night.  Our 3 baptisms turned into 4!  It was really special to see the fruits of our labor that night as everyone of them had their sins washed away and started a new life to follow Jesus Christ.

We also were able to bring several investigators to church to support the confirmations of the recently baptized members.  We are also teaching another family that we found when we were searching for an ex-investigator.  A woman named Carla and her boyfriend Lorencio.  Carla was already baptized many years ago and to this day has a firm testimony, but feels guilty for the errors she has made since she was less active.  She wants to repent and wants to have an eternal family with Lorencio.  Lorencio is a miracle also because he is really humble and wants to learn.  He has a desire to get married and be baptized.  Our only challenge will be Carla's mom.  They said that she doesn't want them to get married, but we are praying and fasting this week so that her heart will change.  We planned to talk to her with them when we get back from our trip.  I just have a good feeling that she will support them.  They are a really special family and I feel that Heavenly Father has a special plan and purpose for them.

This week we confirmed Marcelly.  She told her mom the night before that they needed to go home early so they could wake up for church the next day.  Marcelly started to talk about a mission to her mom and how she would like to be a missionary one day like us.  She told her mom that she only wants long skirts from now on so that she can be more modest.  This little girl is only 10 years old, but she already has a very firm testimony of the gospel.  We also had a Family Home Evening with her less active family and taught the Plan of Salvation.  After wards I taught them that game we play with 2 dice when you roll 7s, 11s, or doubles and you write numbers on a paper until you reach one hundred.  Remember that game?  They had a lot of fun with that.  Laughing and playing that game reminded me of playing and laughing with my own family.  I always thought it was interresting that The Family a Proclamation to  the World talks about wholesome recreational activities.

Happiness in family life is most likely to be achieved when founded upon the teachings of the Lord Jesus Christ. Successful marriages and families are established and maintained on principles of faith, prayer, repentance, forgiveness, respect, love, compassion, work, and wholesome recreational activities. 

To have successful families, we need to have fun...while living the gospel of Jesus Christ.  In that moment I thought back to the fun times with my own family.  It is so important to have family home evenings every week to strengthen the family and to teach.  I know that Heavenly Father has a special love and extra care for families.  I understand also, more profondly than ever, just how much He loves the little children.  We are constantly attacked by little children hugging us on the street.  Many of these children have nothing.  The house of 2 little girls that we baptized sits in the middle of swampy black water on stilts.  The house is the size of a shed.  There is a beat up dirty mattress inside, an old stove and a hammock.  The house is made of wood and between every block of wood there is a little crack.  A family of 7 lives there.  My heart aches to see people living like this, especially little children, but what makes me happy is the love the children have for the gospel.  I know the church is true.  We can have nothing in this life, yet with the gospel, we have everything.  I love this church.  I know it is the true church of Christ.  That is something I will always be thankful for.  The little girl that lives in that house sat with me sunday.  she is only 4 years old and really sweet.  She asked permission to sit on my lap and even though we can't really do that as missionaries, I could not say no.  I feel like I felt for a minute how the Savior feels for the little children.  They are pure in heart.  We need to be more like them. More submissive, humble and loving.  It is something I strive to do everyday.  I love you all.  

Sister Jensen

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