Wednesday, October 27, 2010


I love my cool sisters! Megan- great soccer playing and Brynn and her dancing hands. And wow, Eric is the primary pianist!!...awwww

Sis. Monterio got her Washington package, and she sends a huge hug to all of
you! She is so grateful and excited to visit...not sure when, but she´s coming. Mom, she says you're amazing and I agree with her.

But my week...okay. Cool stuff first. I saw an owl! It came up and sat right next to me. We have cockroches in our house and my companion screams as I kill them with my shoe. We´ve also encountered a really great person, Jackiline, who will probably be baptised this week.

Shannon had some troubling experiences with her companion this week. We chose to keep the details private. Her Zone leaders' advice was to "serve, learn to love" and then they wished her "good luck".

So, this is me. I´m working and striving to be totally obedient. If I don´t have the opportunity to train--you will not hear me complain. The problem I have is the language. I am so behind, I can understand everything but I can´t speak it. Sometimes, I´m close to my breaking point and I don´t know what to do. I´ve begged the Lord and am trying to be better, but this is just so hard. I know, wait and after the trial of your faith, but ug! And my companion is always talking down to me, always saying bad things. I want, so much, to be a good missionary.

This whole experience has reminded me so much of backstage work in the theater. I remember all of the hours and hours and hours that Mom and I, Jerry, Will, Bill and so many others put in to the stake show. Some people wanted to shine in the spotlight, and how, Mom, you always took a step back. You did your part and you didn´t need the whole world to know it. The people who really made a difference in that show, in all of the activities of the church, don´t do it for the spotlight or for the chance to be called as leaders...they do it because they were asked. It's like Dad says, it's the people who stay to clean up after an event, the people who serve because it´s what Christ would do and not because they want the whole world to know it. I think of so many unsung heroes in the stake, Diane, Schweikarts, Brother Conlin, nursery leaders and primary teachers...the helpers of the kingdom. It´s Karen Barkley and Dad at 5pm on the last day of Camp, it´s Sister Monterio making cookies for the Elders and getting up every day at exactly 6:30 as an example.
It´s Larry Colvin and Michael O´Brien. Tracy Day and how he always cried becuase he loves the YM and how he taught the boys so much. Wow, I was really lucky. It´s people who serve because they want to, not because they aspire for callings, that have influenced me so much.

Thanks for your love and support. Love ya!


Sunday, October 24, 2010


So, going to Bragança was my saving grace...literally. It was amazing to get to see Ana (we missed the wedding and had to come back before the baptism), but Ana was perfect...and what made me so happy was that the members of the ward helped her get ready for the wedding and baptism! She has so many people who are helping her to succeed. AWESOME!!!!!!! OUR JOB IS COMPLETE.

I was taught correctly, Sister Monterio is the best missionary I know. I miss serving with her!

Thursday morning, my companion and I had to go to Campinas because ELDER SOARES OF THE 70 was having a meeting with us. YES MEG, THIS IS AN 'Oh my gosh' YOU GUYS MOMENT...and we had to be in Campinas at 11am. The meeting would start at 1. We got up at 5:30, studied, and I was ready to go at 9:30...but my companion wanted to have one of the Young Women do her hair...and it took until 10:50. I told her time and time again that we had to leave. Well, after that, I took control and with 21 years of traveling experience in my pocket(thanks mom and dad), got us on a bus, then got us a taxi and managed to get to the Chapel at 12:52 just in time for the meeting. AND THE MEETING WAS FABULOUS! I learned so much about goals, how the gospel moves us and how we must always do our part. It was fantastic.

Then Friday, we worked! We had a division and I taught and taught and taught. Saturday came and to Bragança, Sister Monterio and I went. We returned to Nova Veneza about 7:30. Then, my comp and I had to visit all of our investigators and confirm for problem. But- for unfortunate reasons, we didn't get the job done.

So, we decided that if we left Sunday morning at 7am- we could confirm with everyone. So, I set the alarm for 5. No prob, yes, I was tired, but darn it, I came on my mission to WORK! By 6:36 I had showered, dressed, done my hair, eaten breakfast and was reading my scriptures. But again, we didn't leave until 8:05 and had a poor showing of only 3 investigators in sacrament meeting. I had to give a talk and couldn't sit with them. The other person that should have sat with them, chose not to. Wasn't the best of situations.

BTW, Sister Monterio said that 13 missionaries left the Manaus Mission and only 3 arrived. Her town has been closed for missionaries as well as all of the towns in the inferio of the Amazon. Where is Eric?

Love you, proud of you all. I need your prayers.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010


So modern miracle, President Tanner autoritized my and Sister Monterio's return to Bragança for the wedding and baptism of BOTH ANA AND GILSON!!!!!!! YEAH!!! And tommarow we have a multi zone conference with Elder Sorres of the 70! Wow, I am so excited.

The last week has been hard, though. I feel as if I am not doing my very best here. The days seem to drag on, many people are willing to listen to us but none want to make committments to have the gospel in their lives fully. Our baptisms fell though on Saturday, and so Sister Wagner and I went to go talk to them...and Sister Wagner told me that I was giving the lesson on faith, which totally freaked me out, so before we walked in, we said a prayer for the spirit to guide our words, and with courage in our callings, we began to talk to them. We read Alma 32:21 when it talks about hoping for things not seen, and then I asked them what their greatest desires were, and then went on to say that only through baptism and the gospel of Jesus Christ can we have those desires of family, health, and happiness. Sister Wagner actually said afterwards that my Portuguese was near perfect, which as everyone who is reading my blog knows, is quite an accomplishment...the Spirit was helping alot. After, Sister Wagner began to speak about the atonement but they were having doubts and so she went to call the zone leaders for help, leaving me alone in the room, and I didn´t know what to say. I ended up bearing my testimony about my baptism, about how after I felt the happiness of heaven and how it was a perfect moment for both me and my dad. They said they will come to church on we will see.

I know without a doubt how powerful diligence and obedience are. I don´t want to give the Lord any reason NOT to bless me, and there are many things I need to do better. I feel like I´m not doing my best, but I don´t know what to do to. Paitence is an attribute that I have to learn, as well how to pray more specifically. I have so many faults, so many imperfections and all I can do is take them to the Lord and learn. Prayer and knowledge, we had a fast yesterday, so we´ll see if we can meet the elect.

Also yesterday when we were at a members house, they had the tv on, and it was Home Alone, at the last part when John Williams music is perfect and everyone is home for a white christmas and I had to walk out of the room because it reminded me that I won´t be home for Christmas.

Anyway, I love you guys. Dad, good luck with stake conference...if you want to add that along with scout masters, primary teachers, and people who stay to clean up after activities, that those who write letters and send packages to missionaries in Brasil get an automatic pass to the celestial kingdom, I don´t have a problem with that. I love you all, Shan

Sunday, October 10, 2010


First off, could you email me Elder Holland´s talk? I missed it...I know, tear! My companion was sick and we missed that session. I got to hear all of the others and they were great. President Monson´s talk was, as always, great. I heard that Uchdorf gave an amazing talk in Priesthood, and I really liked Eyring and Elder Gong.

I received your package yesterday. The Ranch dressing is amazing and I´ve already eaten all of the goldfish!

Shout out to the Amazing Emily, Patricia, and Amanda. You will all have letters!

So, patience, my friends. Patience. My companion is a good missionary and she works hard... God gave me her for a reason. She is helping me with my portuguese, in every setting, and corrects me during lessons, on the street and with other missionaries, and so, yes, I get embarrassed but if this is what I need to speak better than so be it. Prayer is my friend, and I´m trying to be totally obedient.

My Saving Grace is that my dear Sister Monterio is in my district and we had a chance to talk yesterday. I miss my elders, we were all really close. No word yet if President is going to let us return to Bragança for Ana´s wedding and Baptism, but I´m praying that he will.

We´ve been working a ton and have three baptisms for this week. I know that I need to be more humble and listen more and that is what I am going to do. Any words of wisdom would be greatly appreciated.

Oh, and Sister Monterio´s mom has adopted Eric and is sending him food and other cool stuff...small world.

To Dad:
Things I would say if I were speaking in Stake conference

Pray-You have your best friend and your loving Father and they love it when you talk to them

Read your scriptures, you will have peace.

Go to the temple often, you live really close to it. Seriously, I am quite jealous of all of you. If you can´t go in, walk around the grounds. You are some of the luckiest people in the world.

Help with missionary work, GIVE THE MISSIONARIES PEOPLE TO TEACH. This is the salvation of our souls.

Hang out with your family and make happy memories. Families are the most important thing on this earth. Life is too short for regrets.

Remember that you choose to be happy.

Always do your part.

Home and Visiting Teaching is not a responsibility, it is an act of love.

Love everyone and serve every day.

Joseph Smith saw God. When we read the first vision, you know in your heart that it is true.

Write and send Christmas gifts to missionaries in Brasil :) JK on the last one.

The gospel is simple, the gospel is perfect and our God and Savior are perfect.

Anyway, love ya,