Tuesday, March 29, 2016


Today I finished training! I am officially done with 12 weeks and onto just being a companion. Crazy.

This week we passed the 4 months mark since I left for my mission. Also crazy. I was transferred today. I am leaving tomorrow for Maringá. My companion is staying here in Apucarana but started her mission in Maringá and loved it so we will see! I cant believe Sister Smith is finishing her mission in 5 weeks

Ok- this week was really quite wonderful. We were working out in a really far bairro (neighborhood type thing) and clapping at gates to find people to come to church and to teach. We had knocked for a while and were about to leave that area because we had a compromisso (committment or appointment) back downtown. We, for some reason, decided to knock just one more street and there we found Vandressa. She and her husband and two kids are catholic and she is super nice and invited us in. We started teaching them about the book of Mormon and got to know them and their beliefs a little bit more. She was so sweet and did not want us to leave. She gave us her contact information and we want to go back to see them because they are super ready. I am so glad sister smith and i found them and that she will go back and teach them after I leave.

This week was Easter sunday. WHOO! It was fabulous. My companion was asked to give a talk right before sacrament meeting because something fell through and she talked about hands. She talked about how when we want to do basically anything, we use our hands. To clean, to cook, to greet someone, to wave and say hello, to show love we hold hands, just a lot of things. How many times a day do we look at or use our hands? I am typing right now- with my hands. When we wear rings to represent our marriages or love, we put them on our hands. She read Isaiah 49:16 where Christ says, `I have thee engraven upon the palms of my hands...` Hmm... Christ was ressurrected and received a perfected body and chose to leave the marks on His Hands. Why? To remember us. To remember the sacrifice. We are engraven upon the palms of the hands of the Savior of the world. I know I have never made a sacrifice for somebody that I did not love. How much our Savior must love us then. It was a beautiful talk and gives us a lot to think about. In english we say He is Risen and in Portuguese they say he is already resurrected. She taught them how we say it in english. I have never been resurrected so it is a little bit harder to identify with that, but i have risen many times. Every time we get up in the morning, for example. He is Risen so that we also can be. I am so grateful for the knowledge of the resurrection and for the love of the Savior. 
We spoke to a woman in the streets this week who only celebrates friday, the death of Christ and does not celebrate Easter. How sad. We know that He suffered and died for us and we also know that today in this very moment and every moment since that glorious morning of the third day, He Lives.

Then I also loved the womens conference where i felt the theme was truly service and love. He has given us everything and is our loving Heavenly Father and all he asks of us is to be His Hands. Serve, keep the commandments, see the need in others and be an example of Him.

This week at our lunch message, the Irmá we ate with said something that really touched me. `If we could see how wonderful exaltation is goign to be and truly could understand what it would mean to return to the celestial kingdom, we would spend every moment of everyday dropping everything to serve, learn,and become like the Savior. Nothibng else would matter because we would give up everything here to be there again. It will be that wonderful.` I testify of this. Lets do the things that matter most. :)

Well- i am out of time but I want you all to know that I have a testimony of these things and I learned a lot this weekend. I hope you all did too and ENJOY this wonderful weekend of conference from Gods prophet on the earth today. I love you all and have a wonderful week!

Here a some pictures from this week- Us with a small portion of the ridiculous amount of chocolate we received ( I love the members in Apucarana!) and us with one of our investigators and one of my new best friends Gabriela. Love her.

One more thing- As we approach easter this year, the church has come out with a new video to celebrate easter. You can find it athttp://www.mormon.org/easter

Go look it up. It is super cool and powerful. Hallelujah.

Love you guys!

Monday, March 21, 2016

Last Week of Training

Here are some pictures of me.
-I found a factory here that said Oregon on it. What are the odds? 
-Also, the chalkboard of our english class. It has the english word- then the portuguese translation- then one of the brailian elders who speaks quite a lot of english writes how you would write the pronunciation in portuguese. I thought they were quite funny. I will send some more pictures in another email because i can only send about 2 in each email.
-Also- thank you so much for this share the love shirt. Best surprise ever.

This week I start my last week of training! Crazy. I don't have a lot of stories from this week and am short on time but i want you all to know that i love you! Miracles are real and the gospel is true. We had an open house at the church building this week to show people around so that when they come, they already know what the building looks like. It was really great and is always special when people can feel the spirit in the chapel. This week was called SENIOR WEEK. It is week 11 of training and the person being trained (me) acts as the senior companion. Plans all of our days activities, carries the phone, and takes control of all teaching situations. Sounds casual right? Nope. It was terrifying but it is over and i learned a lot.

We had 242 contacts this week which was a true miracle and a blessing. We are having another family home evening tonight with a group of families who does it together every week but switches which house it is at. They all keep each other accountable and it is really fun.

I finished 3 Nephi this week also and it was so special to read the literal words of the Savior. This week we taught Gabriella. She is truly amazing and i will explain her story later but she is learning about the gospel and has already finished 2 nephi. What? Let us all follow her example and not take for granted the gospel that we have.

Have a fantastic week and I will see you all next week for transfers. Love you!

Sister Penni

Monday, March 14, 2016

Week 17

Bom Día!

March 8th, this week, was Día das Mulheres (Womens Day) which was cool. Also, we are seeing a lot of tender mercies. We were clapping gates and it was super hot and Apucarana has a ton of hills and we were sort of casually dying and this lady just randomly offered us juice. She wasnt interested in anything, bummer, but like a normal receptive Brazilian, just offered us juice and we got to sit for a second. Also, this week we had all of the missionaries in our city (about 10) go to one area and do work all afternoon to help that area and we were going to be more than an hour late because our lunch had to be later that day. The morning of the event, we got a call from Irma Tamara, who would be giving us lunch and she ended up not going to work that day and lunch could be earlier. We got to visit with her and have lunch and made it on time to the event which was such a blessing. The Lord works in mysterious ways and always blesses us. How many things in our lives do we let go by unnoticed or just considered coincidences? I know that the Lord was looking out for us.

Also, my favorite food is stroganoff. Which sounds super strange but brazilian stroganoff de carne or stroganoff de frango is delicious. I will for sure be making it for you all when i get home.

We are working with a family right now who have a very complicated story. Liliani is the mom. We met her through a member, and her two sons (12 and 14) Leonardo and Guillerme. They are inactive. Liliani was baptized with 8 years but never had a testimony and got into a lot of wordly things as a teenager. She thought she was excommunicated but turns out she was not. She was baptized in another church and really found God and through His grace, was freed of a lot of things. She always, however, felt something was missing. at 4am one morning, she prayed in her mind that she would go on facebook and if the first post was by a Mormon, she would know she needed to return to church. Yes, you guessed it, that blessed member was João. He led us to her and she counted her story to us. She asked us to give them the lessons and help them receive a testimony. Her sons are so funny and so sweet and have such respect for their mother. They treat her like the queen she is and it is quite inspiring. Their family is just wild but in the best way and we love going there. We left them, one night, with a chapter in the Book of Mormon to read and we sang where can i turn for peace? and left. The next day, she told us she had received her answer and had a testimony. The Book of Mormon is so powerful. She also learned Where Can I Turn for Peace on the guitar and sang it for us and calls it the song of her conversion because we brought it to her. Wow, so sweet. They are now coming to church and her sons received the priesthood yesterday which was really meaningful for us. Her older son started going to seminary and they come to church every week now. It is really gratifying (i think thats an english word) to see how the gospel blesses our families and how it unifies us and brings more happiness into our lives.

Also, this week, we read in Luke 15:4-7, 10. Go read it. It is super good.
One of my favorite families, Mauricio is the grandpa and our investigator, their grandson of 8 years, João wants to be baptized but the grandma does not want him to until the grandpa return to chruch. Mauricio is inactive. He is super nervous and afraid to enter the church and hasnt exactly been holding on to the iron rod. We really want to help João get baptized because he wants to and he is a really good kid and his parents are very very far off members. Anyways, we have been trying to work with his grandpa to come back to church but it has been a while since we have seen them because we are really busy. We were on divisions on Saturday so me and my companion for the day, Sister Reis from Cape Verde. Africa went by there and promised a lot of blessings to them if João could be baptized and the grandma said no. By only a true miracle, Mauricio showed up to church on sunday. I was literally stunned. We will continue to try with them but what an example of how the Lord can and will perform His own owrk and miracles through his servants. It was truly a miracle that he even stepped foot in the chapel. Prayer is real and the power of church is real. Never convince yourself you dont need to go, even one sunday.

Go read Luke. Have a fantastic week. I love you all!!

Love, Sister Megan Penni

Monday, March 7, 2016

English Classes!!

I can't believe I have gone since November. Crazy.

This week was our first week of teaching ENGLISH CLASSES. We have a lot of english speakers in our district so me and Sister Smith are teaching english to members, non members, just everyone, for free in the chapel two nights a week. It is really fun! We are getting a lot of references and the elders got a baptism from it. Success! Also, I am not in a trio anymore because Sister Knoll was transferred but I am still with Sister Smith. :)

We had a pretty big tender mercy this week because we were just really struggling to mark appointments for Thursday and didn't know what we were going to do, so we went to lunch with a member and after came home to plan our day because everything was falling through. It turns out, that right then we got a call that Sister Knoll had to pack her things and was being transferred that exact day a few hours later. The Lord knew that would happen and allowed a day for us to get her settled and ready. I know we were looked over and that the timing was divine! What a blessing!

We got a reference from a member for a less active lady so we went to visit her and i was so inspired by her. She got into an accident a year ago and now isn't able to remember very well. BUT, she had such a strong desire to go to all of the church activities and i was just so inspired because there are so many people who have the ability to go to church but choose not to. She can not go alone because she doesnt know how to get home from church, but rteally wants to. It made me realize how many things we take for granted in this life. May we all be more like Christiani with a desire and complete willingness to live the gospel. 

Also, this week i fell in love with 3 Nephi chapter 9. The beginning talks about the destruction that came, but the last half are literally the words of the Savior. These words came out of Christs mouth and they are so powerful. He wants us to return, turn, and come unto Him. Go read it. Its amazing. The Book of Mormon is so powerful.

One of our investigators already got past 2 Nephi and is loving the Book of Mormon. I can see his conversion coming because it is changing his desires. He set a goal of drinking no coffee this whole week. He started out not being sure about anything. The Book of Momron is the cornerstone of our religion. Last night during our lesson, we were asking him if he had prayed about the book, he says he prays every morning and every night but that while he is reading, this obvious feeling of peace comes over him. We helped him realize that that is the Spirit testifying of truth. He has a testimnony that the book is true. Therefore, Joseph Smith is a prophet, Christ is our Savior, and the Church is true. THe Book of Mormon is so powerful. I challenge you to read the introduction this week. I dont know how anyone can read the introduction of the book and not have desire to read it or not know its true.

I love you all so much! I am sick this week but am being well taken care of. Last night, we were walking home from our last appointment, and i had struggled throughout the day feeling really sick, and I just got this little thought in my head that said thank you. I felt that maybe the Savior was thanking us for going out to work yesterday. I so easily could have stayed home and really felt sick, but we worked and had one of our best lessons and visited a family who is slowly coming back to church. I know they needed taking care of more than us. I felt that the Lord truly is aware of us individually. I know that now. Thank your local missionaries and don't worry- i am resting today.

I love you all so much!! I am doing well here! We have had really nice sunny weather lately and are doing well!


Tuesday, March 1, 2016

Bom Dia, minha familia!!


I got the packages! They were so fun and so exciting! Thank you so much for your letters and cards!! My apartment smells AMAZING with candles. Thank you, mom. It rained a ton this week and one night we forgot our umbrellas and got caught in a super bad rain storm but we made it home safe and soaked! We also had a great zone conference in Londrina which was super fun!

This week we went over to a less active/ sort of coming back families and the mom made us torta de banana (banana cake- basically banana bread) and it was SO GOOD. I got to wash her dishes which was super fun and just tried to serve them. We took lots of fun pictures with their cute kids and we always just leave there after a spiritual thought feeling so good. They are my family of Apucarana. We always stop there for food and laughs and we always just leave feeling so loved and homey.

We are really trying to find new people to teach this week and are just really working hard. This week as we were out doing contacts in the street a sudden and surprising rain storm beat down so we took cover under a building cover and our umbrellas and then hundreds of pigeons from the plaza across the street were getting whipped around in the wind and we got attacked by helpless pigeons and i about lost it. It was so insane and we just laughed a ton but also screamed because it was terrifying. So there's that. 

I am amazed by the women here in our ward who take on so many callings and are just so good. We are loving reading the Liahona during our studies and i encourage you all to use the liahona and ensign in family home evening. It is so wonderful to hear the words of the prophets!

It is so good to hear from all of you and hear how well things are going at home! Things are going well here in Apucarana and I am just feeling so great. My companion showed me this song called Closer by Kyle Thornton and its amazing. Look it up. It explains how I am feeling. 

I want it to be super super super clear to all of you how sure I am of all of this-

I know that Jesus Christ is our Savior and that He lives and that His Father, our Father, has a plan for each of us individually but also has a plan for all of his children- the gospel of Jesus Christ. We must have faith, repent, be baptized, be worthy to keep the spirit, and endure to the end. (Go to church, read the scriptures, pray, serve others, and become like Christ.)

The gospel of Jesus Christ was restored through a prophet of God and the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints is the kingdom of God established again on the earth. Cherish the gospel and the scriptures. I wish i would have given them more value before. I can not imagine my life without these short months of learning now. The gospel is true and God is aware of us. 

I love you my wonderful family. Find somebody in your life who could benefit from the joy of the restored gospel and get them some help. There are people ALREADY prepared by the Lord, we just need to find and rescue them. Thank your local missionaries. Its harder than they let you see.

I love you and until next Monday.

Love, Sister Penni