Monday, October 31, 2011

It's a beautiful day in the neighborhood :)


SO!  This week has been... crazy.  It started with our Zone Leader, Elder Fernandes, getting emergency transfered to Salvador, AND with the knowledge that Elder Campos´s companion wouldnt arrive until this Wednesday... which means we have spent a LOT of time with Elder Campos these past few days so that he wont be alone.  Saturday he was with us the entire day - we studied together in the church, we had lunch together at a member´s house, and then we visited a few of the investigators that Sister Taylor and I have and then we went over to his area.  Oh my goodness, their area is SO different than ours!  Its a lot poorer and they have soooo many more hills (really, really, really steep hills) and - I dont understand how - their area is a lot hotter, too.  Now understand that our areas are in the same ward, its not like there is a lot that separates the areas, but their area is soooo different.  And it was a lot of fun to work with Elder Campos - he is gaúcho, and speaks portuguêse the way it should be spoken, and he was talking a lot about Rio Grande do Sul and Florianopolis... and I am pretty sure I have to go visit him after the mission.  He was with us almost all day yesterday, and he will stay with us almost all day today.  Its different, but I like it =]

We also started teaching an English class this week, and it has been soooo much fun.  The first night we had more than 100 people there!  The second night there were only about 50, but thats a lot better. Sister Taylor and I taught everyone how to sing the ABCs song in English =]  I loved it.

And my camera died =[ To tell the truth, I dropped it, and it didnt actually die, but the lense is bent and so it wont open =[  I am very, very sad.

And I am being transferred!  I am headed to Conquista, a city about 5 hours south of Itabuna, and it is really really dry there, so I have been told.  which I am a little excited for, because its so humid here and its been killing me.  Not only that, but I am pretty sure my new companion will be Sister Andrade, and she trained Sister Forester!  So I am excited.  I will be a bit sad to leave Itabuna... I have almost been here 6 months and have really gotten to know the people and the ward well.  Half of our zone here is changing, and its weird to see everyone leaving.  I am excited, though, because Sister Freitas is being transferred to the area that will be next to mine in Conquista, so we will still be in the same zone.  And we get to travel together tomorrow night.

And thats about all folks! 
This is Sister Petersen, signing off for the last time from Itabuna, São Caetano.

Até mais, boa sorte e boa noite

Monday, October 24, 2011


So, spent another two hours at the doctor today waiting to get the results of the exames and the results are in..... and..... Sister Petersen is perfectly fine.  Which is good.  And annoying at the same time.  All the doctor could say is that I need to rest more during the day.  I was diagnoised (i hate not having spell check and I hate not remembering how to spell in english) with fatigue.  I always thought that sounded really whimpy, but I can honestly say that I understand what fatigue means now.  She asked a little about our schedule (we leave at 11, eat lunch 12-1, work until 9 stopping for half hour to an hour for dinner) and her suggestion was to break up working more: start at 9 work till noon, rest for two hours, work from 2-7 and be done for the day.  We left the doctor and the Irma that went with us to help basically said ´These doctors dont know anything.  They dont know the work you do, they dont know why you do it, they dont know the power you have recieved and they dont know the blessings you are receiving and how the Lord is watching over you.´ It made me happy.  That being said, Sister Vecchi will be advised as to what the doctor said and she will talk with the area medic for the mission.  I am in good hands =]  And I have been feeling a lot better, so dont worry.

And my package arrived in Salvador!  Hooray!!!  It so happens that my old Zone Leader became the Assistent to the President, and he was nice enough to call and let me know that it got there.  He may or may not have had an alternative reason for calling, since he knew that there was stuff in there for him... but we will say that his motives were pure =]  Its a little annoying that it showed up when it did (Saturday) because if it had come a week earlier, I would have it now, because this past Thursday we had Zone Conference.  Which was amazing, I might add.  One of our leaders told a story, and it went a little like this:

Once upon a time there was a kingdom of Ducks.  One day, the king of the Ducks made an amazing discovery and called all the Ducks in the kingdom together so he could tell them about it.  When they all arrived, he proclaimed My beloved Ducks!  I have made a discovery that will change our lives: We Ducks can fly!!!!
The whole kingdom of ducks was so excited, everyone was talking about it and how they couldnt wait to fly for themselves.  And then they all walked home.

And that is how we live life so many times.  We are told in Conference and when we read the scriptures and pray and receive answers from God they things that we are capable of doing.  We hear these things and think Wow... thats so amazing.... but we never do anything to apply it, to do the things that we are capable of doing.  We are capable of so much more than we do at times.  I read the stories in the Book of Mormon and the Bible and realize that I am no different than any of these men and women.  I have the same right, the same capability to see angels, to perform miracles, to change lives.  And you do too =]

And this is Sister Petersen´s very short letter!
(brought to you by the letter ´B´and the number 7)


Monday, October 17, 2011

Term Paz Minha Alma (

Today, we spent the morning practicing music because our zone has been asked (by the lovely assistents to the president) to present a musical number at zone conference this thursday.  Let me tell you, its difficult learning a piece of music in one day when practically no one knows anything about music =]  I love my zone.  And I am excited for zone conference. We finally figured out that we will sing Be Still my Soul, which I am excited about - I really like that hymn.  And want to know what else I did today?  I ate at Subway. !!! =O !!!! How exciting is that?!  Let me tell you, it was really exciting... a foot long, chicken teryaki with sweet onion sauce... yumm....  The Elders were a little surprized I was able to eat it all, but to tell the truth.. I am still kinda hungry.  We will go home soon and I will figure out something else to eat.
I feel like every time I get on here I talk about someone new, so theres no way you ever really get to know the people I am talking about, which makes me feel a little bad at times.  We really do go through people so fast at times.  But thats what happens when practially everyone lets you in the door, even when they are not the least bit interested in the message we have to share.  And everyone believes in God and thinks that what we are doing is good and the message we have is true... just not for them.  Just not for now.  Just not if they have to come to church =]  But thats not what I wanted to talk about!  I wanted to talk about Jackson, who we have worked with off and on for months now.  I met him with Sister Freitas, and he has come in and out of our investigator pool a couple of times.  The lessons we would have with him would always be so good, I would always feel the Spirit really strongly, and then I would always get really confused, because he never progressed at all.  But this past two weeks he has made sooooo much progress and yesterday he went to church (and as I sidenote I may add that sacrament has NEVER been that reverant in the 5 months I have been here!) and he liked it a lot and said that he knows that this is the right path for him!  Sister Petersen did a little dance of joy inside her head when he said that.  You would have to know him to understand completely, but he likes to joke around a lot and sometimes he will say something and I am not sure if he is being serious about it, so it took a little bit more to convince me that he was being serious when he said that, but he was =]
I am excited.  Say a prayer for him =]


até mais - 

Sister Petersen

Monday, October 10, 2011

Onward, ever onward

Olá meus amigos - 

Once again, I went to the doctor this week, but this time just for a check up to see what was wrong and have them test me for things.  We were scheduled for 8am.  We didnt get in to see a doctor until 12:30.  And then we only talked to her for maybe 15mins and she ordered a couple of tests to be done which I couldnt get done that day (I got them done this morning).  Yeah.  Not a big fan of the health care system here in Bahia, but what can you do but smile and try to ignore ´Dungeons and Dragons´ that is playing on the tv in the waiting room?
Other than that, we have been helping Carlos to stop smoking, which will take a lot of faith - he usually smokes more than a pack a day.  But the other day when we came to visit him at 4pm, he had only smoked 1!  Hooray!!!  Milagres acontece!  
Our mission has talked a lot about

And... I am not sure what else to say about my week.  I am a little frustrated because we have been spending a lot of time in the house because of sickness, and I am tired of it.  Especially when nothing is done to make it get better...  We are going to chalk this one up to the Lord teaching me something that I am going to need later on in the mission/life.  It doesnt help that while we teach a lot of people and we have really great experiences during the week, everything really comes down to whether people show up on Sunday or not, and these past few Sundays have been terrible.  Hardly no one has shown up, and when someone does show up, its not someone we have been working with through the week.  Which makes it feel like everything we did during the week, all the experiences we had, were in vain.  Which isnt true.  But its hard not to feel that way at times.
So, sorry this is going to be another short email, but I cant think of much else to say.

I love you lots!!

Até mais - 

Sister Petersen

Monday, October 3, 2011


Sorry that all this is is answering questions - I had a lot of emails because I didnt get a lot of them last week and I wrote to more people than normal (dad, nicholas, emma, carmen, ect)
I love you, this week was good, hope you are doing well in Utah ( i kinda miss Utah to tell the truth) try to see Emily for me if you have time =]


Sister Petersen

1. How are you feeling?  Are you gaining any weight? 
I have gained about 2.5lbs and its staying steady at that weight, so I am not too worried.  i have been feeling great!
2. Have the medical tests been set up yet? 
I will be going to the doctor Thursday.  Say a prayer for me that I will remember and know how to relay all the information I want to.
3. Did you get the package in the tube yet with your camera cord in it?  I know it was delivered a couple weeks ago to the mission office.  I thought you would get it when you were there for the sister's conference but you didn't mention it.
     I did! and I love it!  I have to figure out how to put it up now... thanks so much!
4. Do you still love me? ;)
Of course!  You are beautiful!  Thank you sooooo much for the pictures in your last email.  I miss seeing you and the rest of the family.  Pictures really do help
5. Who do you hear from?
Um.... You... Dad... my siblings... companions from the MTC... Carmen... and Elder Bahr.  The End =]  But I really dont have a problem with not getting mail - it really doesnt phase me the way most missionaries say that its so important... my english is going out the window, goodness gracious....  Elder Bahr is the only one I have gotten letters from, besides the ones you send through mission ties
6. Any Christmas requests? We will need to send off the package very soon.  We won't be sending you a pinata, it is just too expensive to ship stuff, maybe you can buy one there and we cold send the stuff to fill it.  Let me know.
 Um.... I dont know. Marshmellows! My hymnbook in english! shout or tidepens... umm..I will think about this...
7. What is the funniest thing that has happened to you so far.
Oh gosh... I am near about brain dead when I show up to write these emails, I will let you know... Um... I might have to think on this one for a while.  a lot of them have to do with circumstances... Oh!  This past week Sister Taylor and I were teaching a woman and she is a little... emphatic about things.  Overly dramatic.  So she was telling this story about how she went to a different church and a missionary there ´said a word that offeneded me´ to translate roughly.  Sister Taylor then asked with a completely straight face ´what word? ´  And I about lost it for the rest of the lesson.  Every time I would catch Sister Taylor~s eye, I would have to try sooo hard nott to start laughing
8. Did you listen to General Conference?
I did.  All in portugues.  It was a little terrible (ask Nicholas to explain) but wonderful at the same time.  I loved the talk that Elder Uchtdorf gave - I really felt like he gave that talk especially for me.  and the talk by Elder Anderson was terrible, too.  I do not know how to explain it; I have always wanted to get married, always wanted to have kids, but there have been a couple of things that have happened on the mission and my desire to have kids has grown 40fold.  It is completely ridiculous.  Especially because I cant do anything about it right now.  And I sit there and ask the Lord if He thinks Hes funny.  He thinks He is =]  Or maybe just smart.