Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Monday, November 17, 2014


Haha bom dia and boa semana. I have had quite a week here, it all started with me coming back to Goiânia. And the first night that we were staying here there were like 15 missionaries going home, and 10 of them slept in our house! So it was prety crowded, pretty crazy. This is the first "going away" that I've been to, so there's good news and bad news. The good news is that I got to eat lunch 2 times in the President's house and it was suuuuper tasty! the bad news is that I knew a lot of people going away, including Andrea, and so it was kind of sad and really trunky haha. But its all good!

So what is life in the office like, you may wonder? Pretty much just like the tv show! haha just kidding that would be insane. Basically... its a lot of work. There has been a bit of a misunderstanding with the water and light bills so pretty much every day somebody calls me complaining and I have to go fix it. I have to take care of all of the mission funds for everything you could think of and also register everything to make sure that nothing is going wrong. The problem is that Elder Silva, who would have trained me, is now the new assistent (whooooh!), so i dont have anyone to really show me the ropes... but it will all turn out okay!

My comps name is Elder Sales, he is really tight. Like after training so much is really great to be with someone that already knows how to teach and live mission life and is just like really excited about life! He is the executive secretary, so he always is having to take care of problems, even more than me! I am trying to help out when I can.

I'm sorry but I didn't take a lot of pictures but I was just really kind of overwhelmed and trying to figure things out. But these are the secretaries! Elder Brooks was reassigned to Detroit and I actually met him there, Elder Zeballos is the son of a 70 (wow) but super funny and joke-ey, and Elder Sales de São Paulo.

Sorry if I forgot things but even today on Pday I have had to use time to go to the terminal and buy bus passes and stuff and so its been pretty busy! You can imagine that today I will be sleeping quite a bit haha. But i KNOW that the Lord will qualify and help me as I do my best to serve Him and care for His affairs here on the earth. 

PS yes i still do missionary work too, the office is just until 5 on weekdays.
Also I can text on my phone so I am learning brazilian text linguo!!

blz: beleza
flw: falou
vlw: valeu
rsrsrsrs ou kkkkkk: lol or hahahahha

Elder Nicholas Olsen

Dearest loved ones,

Grace and peace unto you!

Baptism this week:Inline image 1
Helping people come unto Christ is the best. The woman on the left is Antônia - she has so much desire to leave the things of the world behind and become a better person. 

We are also helping a woman stop smoking. She allowed us to take her cigarettes....Inline image 2
..so we broke them all! Haha one more vitória that occured this week.

So I wasn't transferred, but I have been designated as the District Leader here! Which was really good - for the first 5 minutes. And then it just turned into a LOT of work! But I am happy - I have been wanting to be able to make a difference in the lives of the other missionaries. It is challenging, but rewarding.

We were visited by a general authority this week - Elder Mazzagardi. He spoke about everything from music to the ability to read the eyes of others, to the fact that when we bear testimony there are angels with us recording what we say! I thought this last part very interesting. Since he came I have been paying more attention to my own testimony, and when I bear it I have felt a lot more power!

In other news, we got stuck in an elevator this week. For a solid 40 minutes... it was a good time, but I wouldn't do it again. Once it hit 30 minutes I started to freak out, but then we sang some hymns, and I felt better :)

It has been difficult, but this week I really realized - this is the ONLY time in my earthly life that I will be able to serve the Lord with ALL my heart might mind and strength - what a blessing it is! I love you and pray for you always.

Elder Eric Olsen

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

WELCOME TO......GOIÂNIA!!!!!!!! Yes mom I was transferred, I will be returning to Goiânia. But this time to the downtown area, to be the new Finance Secretary! And who will train me?... my own dad! Elder Silva will be training me AGAIN! My dad 2 times!! I guess you could say I'm pretty excited. When I called the Sisters of my District to tell the news, I had to convince her for like 20 minutes because she thought I was lying haha. Although I will miss this area a lot. I have actually grown to love it, and especially love the members! Like for example, Irmã Nubia. I don't love her like YOU mom haha, but like a mission mom I love her!
With Sister Nubia's family
 ANYWAY I had some awesome experiences this week, first of which was a baptism! One week ago we went to Adriele's house and challenged her and her kids to baptism for this week, and they accepted! So we had to go every single day of the week to teach everything else and keep up with them, and unfortunately they live a little bit far away, but whatevs.

Then we finally got to Saturday, which was a huge activity in all of Brasil of Mormon Helping Hands. But in my stake they hardly didn't advertise it, so instead of having 100,000 people (which was the idea), it was all 16 missionaries from Anápolis and like 20 other people, a majority members. So we just sat around and watched mormon messages while the little kids played in a bounce house haha.

Then we got to the time of the baptism, and it was the usual correria of problems: didnt have enough baptismal clothes, didnt have a member of the bishopric, blah blah blah and so we had to run around trying to fix all of the problems. Then FINALLY the meeting started, and I was literally in the water with Adriele when she divulged a secret that would have been great to know beforehand: she has fear of water. As do her 2 daughters... So we literally had to do the baptisms like 4 times for each one until they actually went all the way under! Haha it was so embarrassing, but whatever, in the end they were all baptized and confirmed so I'm happy.

Also it was cool at the end of the baptism, we had planned with some of the other missionaries (everyone was there because of Helping Hands) to do a special closing hymn. So I played piano and they did Joseph Smith's First Prayer, and then after the 3rd verse everyone hummed and one said the First Vision. It's something that I learned in the MTC but it brings the Spirit so strong and it was really great! And then afterward my ZL said that some people were crying when he said the vision. It was great!Not because i like to make people cry... but... ah you get the point!

Also haha funny story, the littlest girl is really cute, shes 3 years old and she said to me "Pastor... eu quero me batizar também!" hahaha i laughed my head off, like the cutest thing I've ever seen.

So that's my story! Thank you all for supporting me and praying for me, I will be sending a Christmas package to the fam soon. I just have to arrange some things first! AMO vocês!

Elder Nicholas Olsen

Zona Anápolis!

Dear family,
I don't have a lot to say this week. The work was slow here, but fortunately, we had a baptism! Which was very exciting.

Dad, I thought you should know that we are teaching a woman whose old boss was from Austria. The other day we got talking about Austrian food - she talked about chucrute (?) and goulash!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! WHAT!!! I am going to try to convince her to make it for us as well!

I will try to be better this week. I love you guys and I appreciate your love and prayers.

Elder E Olsen

chatting with the members

singing I Know That My Redeemer Lives in church

Monday, November 3, 2014


Dear family:


This is Gerlane. She is one of the elect. She was searching for a church, and recognized the truth that finds itself in the restored church of Jesus Christ. She prayed simply with faith, and God responded that she should follow! And so she was baptized - the first baptism do meu filho Elder B Machado!

Also mom, we experienced some flooding this week.
our apartment building
Elder Mason told me that it reminded him of Star Wars,... some part that I don't remember. But it was pretty exciting and really gross! But the latter half of this week has been pleasantly dry! So I was happy for that.

Jackson and Gleice and their children, Arthur and Ana Clara, are well. They receive so many witnesses that the church is true! They are just a little nervous to get baptized. Of course, as a missionary, that is not what I want to hear... I have already seen people like that before, and they often end up forgetting about the signs and answers that God has given, and giving up on the church. So keep praying for them!

This week, I was struck by 2 things:

1. Our happiness and success in life doesn't depend on our situation, it depends on our attitude! Just like the Nephites in the times of war, we can be happy during times of strife. We just have to recognize the many blessings that Heavenly Father is giving us - even if they aren't necessarily things that we are hoping for!

2. In reading Titus this week, I saw what good example you, mom and dad, have been. Dad, as bishop, you always followed Paul's counsel:
 For bishop must be blameless, as the steward of God; not self willednot soon angrynot given to wine, no striker, not given to filthy lucre; 
But lover of hospitalitylover of good mensober, just, holy,temperate; 
Holding fast the faithful word as he hath been taught, that he may be able by sound doctrine both to exhort and to convince the gainsayers.
So thank you for that example, always selfless, sober, just, and a wonderful teacher!
He goes on to teach the women:
 The women likewise, that they be in behaviour as becometh holiness, not false accusersnot given to much wine,teachers of good things; 
 That they may teach the young women to be sober, to love their husbands, to love their children,  To be discreet, chastekeepers at homegood, obedient to their own husbands, that the word of God be not blasphemed.
And I immediately thought of my dear own mother. 
Thank you both for your examples and love! Also you, Nick, and you, Phil, and Emly also! I love you and I would not be who I am today without the influences of you all. 
Muito amor,
Elder E Olsen
ps essa semana fiz um bolo. Ainda sou a mesma pessoa :)

p.s.mom i got the birthday box this week and the Christmas box and the journal. The journal is SO COOL thank you so much! But do I seriously have to wait to open these boxes?! I think I will have enough patience to not open one, but I won't survive 2 months with 2 boxes staring me in the face..!

This is going to be a long one.

Well family, boa semana! How wonderful to hear from you about the triumphs of this week. Sometimes I wonder if you only talk about the good things and leave out the setbacks and heartaches, and if you do it is really considerate of you. But I have faith that as I am here and doing my part in the work of salvation, the Lord protects you--at least until we get back together!

Dad it is so interesting to see what you had written in your journal! It's interesting to think that at one point you were thinking and doing the very same things as I am doing, even in a cemetery (I'll talk about that later on). And to think about what a mighty man in the Priesthood you have become, even if you don't think so, and that I can have hope that one day I'll get there too. Its interesting to me to note the power and steadiness of you, Dad, and the care and love of you, Mom, and think about our Heavenly parents. It seems to me as if it were a type (is that a word? darn it English really is hard). What I mean to say is like a comparison or an example of how they are, but on a smaller scale. But not very much smaller:)

Então!! BATISMO!!! Alcyr was baptized on Saturday and  confirmed. It was great, the Spirit was there, an awesome experience. The first person that I actually found and taught and baptized the whole way through!! And we went there last night to chat a little bit and he said to us the following: "two weeks ago was my birthday, and I was standing right here on this porch and I said 'I think I'm going to change my life.' And so I made that birthday wish... and it really did come true." It was so awesome, I was without words.

This week was so busy! Like a billion things happened! First off we went to a multi zone conference in Goiânia and I ALREADY GOT MY CHRISTMAS BOX ughghghg. The other day the ZLs came to do the interview for baptism, and afterwards they passed in our house. The one ZL tried to convince me to open it for like 10 minutes and finally I got a knife and started to open and everything but in the last second I saw little green and red papers inside and I couldn't do it! hahah but it was super intense. In the meeting, the presidente revealed this new system of levels to help us with our goals. And the ZLs were saying to me " oh yeah its like super inspired and everything" and i was like whatevs. But when the President was explaining everything, I actually felt the Spirit and I knew it was an inspired program! And its like the first time that I felt inspired by the Spirit about something that's not testimony related, so that was cool.

This week was filled with a few lessons that I really felt the Spirit, so that was great. I don't really know how to explain them, but just that the Spirit was with us, I could feel as if our words were plated with more power from on high! We are teaching a lady with 4 kids, its that same family, but the husband is having a lot of problems with alcohol. So pray for them please!

Also I was bit by a dog but I'm okay! don't worry :)

ALSO its mango season finally!! Just like Bryan Austin said, everyone just gives you mangos now haha. Not everyone, but there are a few people in the ward of investigators that gave a ton. Its not my favorite fruit, but its definitely good!

Yesterday was like the day of the dead, so we (all missionaries in Anápolis) went to the biggest cemetery in the city and we sang some hymns and gave out a ton of pamphlets and stuff. I felt like you dad! But...... your choir was probably way better than ours haha. And also there was a huge tent of the Catholics and they did mais ou menos 120000 masses during the day. But it was fun! And it was a change of pace! We got almost 200 references, and from our area there were--wait for it--a grand total of 2!!! haha but its okay. Also I had a really spiritual experience there... actually not at all but it was just funny. Someone called my name ("ELDER!") and i turned around and it was what seemed to be a married couple laughing with another old guy. And so I walked up and asked if I could help and he was like "no I was just saying to him, look at this rapaz bonito! you look like a prince! And just so you know I am NOT gay, but you are bonito!" hahahahahahahahahahhahahahaha oh geez.

Anyway, its looking like I might be transferred. But you don't have to mark my words because I don't really know. But I will go where the Lord wants me to go!!

I love you guys! I know that God is our Father and the He loves us dearly, individually, and fully. Thank you for everything!

Elder Nicholas Don Olsen

PS mom if you're reading somerset maugham you should read Of Human Bondage or Razors Edge one of my teachers said they were really good back in the day
Happy Halloween!

Happy Baptism!