”Um ano e meio é poco para servir O Senhor… então vamos continuar servindo.”

Translation: A year and a half is little time to serve the Lord… therefore we will keep serving.

I can’t believe I’m writing this e-mail but I will say that I feel better writing it now than I did when I first came home. As of this past week I have been home from my mission for 6 months.

Well as you can tell, I’ve been wanting to write this e-mail for a while. I started writing it last year, in January, and again in April. Tonight it just felt right. It’s 1 :30 AM here in Provo and I can’t sleep. Next week, on October 14th, marks the year anniversary of when I left everything I had come to know and love. I left my beloved Brasil, my new found family, and a rewarding lifestyle that can only be understood by those who have experienced it. I left something that my soul had yearned for with a strength and desire I have scarcely yet to experience again. Sometimes I wonder if I ever will feel anything else like it.

After reading some of my last e-mails as a missionary, I don’t necessarily have anything new to say. Honestly it was refreshing to go back and feel of the vigor and love I had. Sometimes in the day to day it gets lost. My first purpose of this e-mail, a year after my mission, was to say thank you. Thank you to those who prayed for me and with me. Thank you to those who cried for me and with me. Thank you for those who let me leave so that I could find those who would let me in. Thank you to those who helped pave, pay, and plan the way for my mission. Thank you for those who sent e-mails, letters, thoughts, good vibes, and who took time to read what I was sharing. You all have seen parts of my soul. I mean that in every sense of the word. I try not to exaggerate.

The next purpose of this e-mail is that a year after my mission, I’m doing ok and that I’m still me. Although it took a while. The first three months of being home was HARD. I will not lie. It was better and worse than I expected. God continued to care for me, I still saw His hand every day and for that the transition of home was easy. It was hard relearning English, relearning how to interact with people in a non-gospel way, relearning my name and what it sounded like (Wolfgramm for Brasilians is NOT an easy name to say), hard being by myself, hard eating boring food, hard being away from those I love, hard not walking everywhere, and hard relearning my place in my family. It was HARD. As January approached I left home with more fear than I realized and headed out West to continue back at school. That transition was easier. In the months that followed I used the lessons learned from my mission to motivate me, help me focus, excel in school, and caught glimpses of my purpose. Six months came and I continued experiencing the feelings of life. I had my heart broken by those closest to me. I cried, I laughed, I knocked down my own walls of insecurity and fear, I learned, I developed friendships, I struggled, I overcame.

Now I sit in October. I have found the balance, although I don’t always carry it out in full. God and Jesus helped me take the girl I was, the girl I’ve always been, and merge her with the woman I saw in myself on the mission. They continue helping me see the vision of who I want to be. Sometimes I lose that vision or don’t trust in it enough but They still help me. And while I wish I could return to the places that have become holy in my heart, I know I’m where I need to be. Even while I sit tonight crying as I reread e-mails of my time in Iowa and Brasil, as I sit crying about the injustices, joys, and pains of life, I feel peace. Yes, I am happy with where I am. Yes, for the most part, I am happy with who I am.

Jesus said, “Look unto me in every thought; doubt not, fear not.”

He also said in the book of John “I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.”

The thought came to me this weekend that while we do live in perilous times, we also live in the fullness of times. We will experience the full range of human emotions. We will experience the full range of trials, tribulations, tests, and tears. We will experience the full range of happiness, hope, help, and healing.

“To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven:

A time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pluck up that which is planted;

A time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to break down, and a time to build up;

A time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance;

A time to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones together; a time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing;

A time to get, and a time to lose; a time to keep, and a time to cast away;

A time to rend, and a time to sew; a time to keep silence, and a time to speak;

A time to love, and a time to hate; a time of war, and a time of peace.”

-Ecclesiastes 3:1-8

How grateful I am that my life didn’t end once I returned home from my mission. Some say it has just begun, but I disagree. It is just a new season of life. Just like the season of my mission, just like the season before my mission. It is truly a great time to be alive.

Com amor,

Brooke

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SHE’S BACK!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Many thanks to all of you who follow her blog and have loved and supported her throughout her mission! She is not quite back on Social Media and will likely be posting a final post here on her blog in the near future. Give her a little more time as she is adjusting back to life, and you will begin to see her on Face Book, etc.

Thank you all again for the role you all played in my daughter’s success, and life changing experiences!

Love,

Linda Wolfgramm

os sons de primavera são: olha! olha! esquilo! ribbit…

Bom dia!! Thanks for all the emails I got- yáll are the greatest.

What a wonderful weekend we had. This past General Conference was one of the most special conferences I´ve ever assisted. I can´t believe 6 months has already passed… I remember sitting in Santo Amaro watching Conference in English in a little room with other missionaries. I wasn´t frustrated by my lack of understanding portuguese but I wanted to improve. I made a goal that by October, my last General Conference as a misisonary, that I would watch- and understand– in portuguese.

As the days for conference got closer, I made my list of questions. I had a bunch of questions from the weakness I need to improve, how to help my area, etc. Saturday we arrived in the chapel. I was invited to watch in English but I declined. General Conference started, I listened and I understood. I received answers. Then the next session started and the same thing happened. Sunday came and the pattern continued. I listened and I understood every word that was spoken. I received answers to ALL of my questions and doubts. Another miracle happened… all of the notes I took were written in portuguese.

I can not adequatley express in words all that I have seen, heard, and learned these past 18 months but I can express in words, to some degree, my testimony.

I testify that Heavenly Father is our loving Father in Heaven who plays an ACTIVE role in our lives wether we realize it or not. Prayer is the method of communication in which we show our desire to recognize His hand more fully in our lives. As we increase in our desire and sincerity of prayer, our knowledge of who we are increases. As we converse openely, frankly, and reverntly with God Almighty every part of our soul begins to change.

I testify that this change is a process. As we read the ´´letters´´ (scriptures) and ´´emails´´ (church magazines) daily we understand more of who He is. This change begins to take root and we begin to see the fruits of the Spirit working more fully in our lives- fruits of love, peace, joy, service, diligence, and light fill our lives.

I testify that the gospel, priesthood, rights, authorities, blessings, commandments, and church were restored- brought again in their original form- to the Earth through the Prophet Joseph Smith. I know he saw God the Father and His Son, Jesus Christ. The leaders- especially those of the First Presidency and the Quorum of the 12 Apostles- are called and ordained of God. They are servants of the Perfect Master. They preach and exort the truth in all of her forms.

I testify that there is more to life than this earthly state. Opposition exists, sadness and sin are real, but there exists hope. This hope comes through the Atonement of our Savior and Redeemer Jesus Christ. He understands everything. He is full of compassion and mercy. He walked the path that we must follow if we want peace and joy in this life and in the life to come.

This gospel is eternal. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints is the Church of Jesus Christ. I´m not perfect nor is anyone who belongs to the Church but we have all of the methods in which we can improve. I send this testimony as my witness that Heavenly Father loves us, that Jesus Christ lives, that The Book of Mormon is a testament of our Savior, that Joseph Smith was a prophet of God and that Thomas Monson is His prophet today.

I opened my mission call reading the words of ´´The Fellowship of the Unashamed.`´ I knew then a little bit of what I would experience. I had a testimony of all of this then. The thing thats changed is that my testimony has deepened. I will live and I would die for this gospel and this Church. I am part of the Fellowship of the Unashamed.

All of my love,
Sister Brooke Wolfgramm

ah- ah- ahCHURCH!

(we can´t proselyte infront of other places of worship but sometimes my companion forgets so we made up that little trick to help her remember. now everytime we see another church, we ´sneeze´ and start laughing haha)

Alrighty so Dad emailed a few questions and since I still have 30 minutes on the computer I thought I´d answer them!

*how was Church on Sunday?
Church was great! We had 5 investigators at church, I played the piano, and the talks were about the Priesthood, Word of Wisdom, and the Sacrament. Sister Palqui and I taught the Primary kids about fasting, and then in Relief Society we learned about where we should put our treasure: in our families and in Heaven.

*how many lessons are you teaching a week?
Usually we teach about 20 lessons or more each week. There are a lot of people in the streets because not everyone has cars. It is very easy to teach people about the Restoration or Plan of Salvation, etc in the very street! The people are very receptive to listen, but not always to ACT. 🙂

*how has the MTC helped prepare you for your field mission?
Good question… in the MTC I learned that this is the work of the LORD. It is by His grace and His Spirit that we can do ANYTHING- teach, learn, invite, walk that extra mile, etc. That lesson has carried with me into the field. I also learned that everything is in God´s timing. When my visa didn´t arrive back in March of 2013 I was so frustrated but then a wise leader told me that I would go where the Lord needed me, I just needed to be humble and willing. I obeyed and was blessed with miracles for 9 months in Iowa. Then I came to Brasil and had another 9 months of miracles. The Lord truly is in charge.

*what have you learned since then AND you’re last area?

What have I learned since the MTC?! HA! What HAVENT I learned?!?! You can pick any principle of the gospel and more than likely my testimony has been strengthened in that principle.
Embu-Guaçú… I´m still learning 🙂

*Looking back at your companions, how have they helped you grow and how are they in the gospel?
I have been so blessed with every one of my companions. Each of them have taught me to be more Christlike. From one companion I learned the importance of laughter, the other I learned the importance of the Atonement, another fasting, another diligence, etc. Almost all of them have come from families with members in-active in the gospel, as well as family members who aren´t members of the Church. I have learned to be grateful for the family and circumstances that I have. I have learned that the Lord prepares us for things that we will face.

*How are the members doing?
The members in Brasil are full of faith. They work hard for what they have and are so willing to give it all away if asked. Most of them are converts to the gospel and it is easy for them to share the gospel. They open their mouths, exercise their faith, and they aren´t ashamed of their membership with The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints.

Everytime you say ´sup´, the answer is ´nothing´

Hello family and friends! First off, thank you so much for the love, emails, but most importantly the prayers that yáll are sending my way. I really appreciate them. Every Monday for the past few weeks I´ve struggled… it´s not that I don´t love yáll, it´s just that every Monday I´m faced with the ´friendly reminders´ that my time is finishing up here in Brasil. I love being a missionary and serving these people here in Brasil. I don´t want this time to end. Thankfully I still have some time left and I know Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ will help me when the moment comes for me to return. Everytime I start to think, read, or hear about it I start to get these big tears streaming down my face. I don´t want to come home because it means I will have to give up my calling- my life- as a full time missionary.

but enough about this- I´ve still got time and I don´t want to cry anymore today, haha

ENTÃO… This week we had our normal meetings with the district and zone on Tuesday, another meeting with Presidente Dalton, um pocinho doença, and an awesome planning session to find more people to teach and bring to The Church.

Tuesday we learned about faith, ways to improve our teaching skills, and the importance of prayer.
Wednesday we woke up at 4 AM to catch a bus at 5:30 AM to go to Santo Amaro for our meeting with Presidente Dalton. The meeting finished around 5 PM and we arrived home in Embu-Guaçú around 10 PM. We were exhausted but learned so much!
Presidente Dalton taught about SONHOS (dreams) and establishing METAS (goals)…. it was so good!!!

S– ser realista
O– objetivos específicos
N– no papel
H– horário determinado
O– olhar diariamente
S– Ser Supremo

or in other words,
D– deadline
R– realistic
E– etched in stone
A– always reviewing
M– measurable
S– Supreme Being

As it was my last multizona conference, they asked that I gave my testimony. I cried of course.
Wednesday I woke up with an upset stomach and during studies it because obvious that I was dehydrated… so I drank some gatorade, slept, and studied after calling Sister Dalton. Thankfully Thursday I woke up with energy and little pain and by Saturday the pain was completely gone!

We had five investigators at church on Sunday, we made goals to find more people to teach, and rumor has it that this week we´ll get to go to the temple and watch General Conference! I am SO EXCITED. and I invite you all to make a list of questions, doubts, problems, etc and bring that list with you to General Conference. I promise if you listen with ears to hear, you will hear counsels from the servants of the Lord specifically for YOU.

Love,
Sister Wolfgramm

we belive in being honest, true, chaste, marvelous…

hope yáll are enjoying the fotos! im trying to take at least 2 a day.

Before I forget, this little clip is beautiful. How was everyones week?
Our week was good. We taught, we learned, we laughed, we had all of our investigators not go to church, and this week we are doing a ´´cleansing´´ to find out those who are willing to progress! wahoo!
Random: I love this scripture story.
I don´t have much else to say… things are going good here. This past week was rainy and cold but we were blessed with good health and the best calling in the world: preaching the gospel!

Yesterday was ward conference. We talked about lots of things including our purpose here on the earth, the importance of seminary, and eternal families. It was a great day because despite the rain, we had 140 people at sacrament meeting!!! (usually when it rains here we have less than 100… sad)

This week we have a reunion with Presidente Dalton about setting goals and making plans. I am excited!! Im ready to learn and apply. Uhhh Im sure I have more to say but I can´t think of anything right now. I love yáll! I´m happy and loving my mission. We have living prophets and apostles called by God.

Love,
Sister Wolfgramm

P.S- this was a nice little tender mercy. hope it helps one of yáll as well