Oi familia e amigos!
This week was a pretty typical week at the CTM. As I tried to think of what I would share with you today, there really wasn´t a whole lot that I could say; only a few things stuck out as being really important that happened this week.
First of all, on Thursday, we were sitting in class and I asked someone what the date was and I realized I was a terrible daughter and forgot to wish my WONDERFUL PARENTS HAPPY ANNIVERSARY!!!!! :) LOVE YOU GUYS!!!! THANKS FOR BEING MARRIED!!!!!! Did you guys do anything fun to celebrate?
Sister Child and I had some really good lessons this week. We taught the Plan of Salvation to both of our investigators, Bruna and Vinicius. When we were in the first lesson teaching the Plan to Vinicius (we had to teach it in two parts for lack of time), I started talking about the Atonement and that lesson just became so real for me. He said that because his parents are separated he feels alone a lot, and I was almost in tears as I explained to him that Jesus died for him so that he never has to feel alone and that any time he does feel he is he can pray. I just wanted him to know that it was true and that Heavenly Father loved him and his Savior loved him. And I felt their love for him. It was such a good lesson!
Sunday, I didn´t have to talk, but I had a super good talk prepared about the Atonement! Sister Habel and Elder Banz were the two from our district that talked and one other Elder and Sister also spoke. Which means there is like a 100% chance I´m speaking next week because our district is the only one leaving this week. I had to conduct the opening song during Sunday devotional and Sister Child played, so that was fun haha. And then we had a good devotional from President and Sister Swenson. They talked about using the tools we have and the 3 H´s of the gospel, which are Honor, Honesty, and Humility (I think). That was really cool.
Last night was absolutely incredible, though. My favorite day at the MTC by far. We had devotional, where I was asked to pray....that was nerve-wracking. I had so much in my heart that I wanted to say, but I literally said a short 5 line prayer in Portuguese. I think that Heavenly Father was trying to give me a glimpse of what my mission is going to be like. I´ve decided, well I´ve known since I got to the MTC, that one of the reasons I was called to Brazil was to learn to be more humble, because the people here are super humble. It´s definitely going to be a good learning experience for me.
The devotional was all about the Atonement and how we can better apply the Atonement in our lives. We were all just super amazed and happy. So we went back to our classroom and sat down in a little "family circle" and has district meeting. We started out just sharing our thoughts from the devotional, but it became a testimony meeting centered on the Atonement. I don´t think I can express in words how wonderful of a meeting it was. Several people were in tears. Others were very close. The Spirit was incredibly strong. I was so beyond happy and grateful for the Atonement. It was amazing to hear about the experiences that others in my district have had as well with the Atonement. The Atonement is so real. I hope you all know that. One of my favorite things the speaker in the devotional said was "The Atonement is to be enjoyed!" Guess what?! You don´t HAVE to repent. You GET to! The Atonement is so much more than that though. Because of the Atonement, we can be made stronger, better people. I am so grateful for that. It has helped me numerous times in my life. Enjoy the atonement! Christ willingly died for us so that our burdens could be removed! Take upon yourself His yoke, that your burden may be light. He will never deny you that.
We went to the Campinas temple today. It will never cease to be beautiful! I love it! As we sat in the celestial room, it was very bittersweet for me. I don´t get to go to the temple again for the next 17 months of my life. Those of you who have a temple close by please take advantage of it. Go there often. It will bring you strength in ways you could not otherwise obtain. I love the temple so much!!!
As you can see, this week has been very centered on the Atonement for me. I LOVE THE ATONEMENT! I Love my Savior. He means the world and more to me. Without Him and His sacrifice, I am nothing and would not be here in Brazil today. I am so grateful that He was willing to sacrifice His life for me, so that I, though imperfect and full of guilt and sin, may be made clean and one day live with Him and my Father in Heaven again!
I leave for Floripa on Tuesday, just a short five days and I will have been on my mission for six weeks. That´s a whole transfer! On Tuesday I will have been at the Brazil CTM for a month!!! THE CTM IS A TIME WARP!!!!! That´s what my district decided. We feel like we´ve been here for forever, but at the same time it doesn´t feel like it´s been three weeks! Crazy stuff! But it´s the Lord´s time, and that´s what makes being on a mission so amazing! So, you won´t be hearing from me for 10 days, but when you do, I´ll be in the Land of the Flowers!!!
I´m sad to be leaving my district. I love them so much. They´ve become like family to me and I´m going to really miss not being able to have story time in English. But I´m going where the Lord needs me and there is someone out there who needs me now. So I´m going, with a smile on my face and scriptures (and a dictionary) in hand, and I´ll learn what he needs me to know because I know that this is where the Lord wants me to be.
Eu sei que esta igreja é veredeira. O Livro de Mormón é veredeiro. A Expiação de Jesus Cristo é real é infinitivo. Jesus Cristo morreu por nos e nossos pecados. Ele nos ama muito. Pai Celestial nos ama muito também. Eu amo vocês muito. Sou muito grato por o exemplos de vocês. Eu sei que meu Salvador e Redentor vive. Em nome de Jesus Cristo, Amem.
Love, Sister Wilkins
Have a wonderful week! I love you all! And hopefully next time you hear from me, I´ll be able to show you how beautiful this place is with some pictures!
(Sidenote from Mom: I just put the last paragraph into google translate. It's a beautiful testimony!)