Monday, November 28, 2011

Hello hello!

It has been a wonderful week. Yes, Celia and Carlos were married and baptized! It was wonderful, simple, and I am thrilled. The Ward helped so so much, and it really was a success for everyone. I am so grateful for the persistence and love that everyone showed so that we could arrive Saturday and have a lovely day.

One of the best parts was that Presidente and Sister Vecchi visited our ala [Ward-?]Sunday - to see these two great people be confirmed. It was really, really nice to have them see the work of so many. Presidente came to do interviews with us, and -as always - it was great to see him. Our little Thanksgiving banquet that we had today [Monday, Nov. 28] was lovely. Truly. I will say that I was slightly surprised. 10 elders trying to put together a Thanksgiving meal was truly entertaining, and we thoroughly enjoyed the day together. We made rolls, and they turned out . . .alright. They didńt quite rise right, but wére going to blame that on the cold and the tricky oven. Oh well, most of them were eaten (we made 48 for 17 people.) Presidente bought a few rotisserie chickens, an Elder from Idaho made mashed potatoes, and some form of gravy, we had a version of stuffing, some liquidy jello, rice, macaroni, salad, and mini pies of pumpkin and brigadeiro (a popular chocolate caramel sort of thing with sweetened condensed milk and chocolate powder). It was quite nice. Presidente ate with us and yes, we talked about iphones, and ipads, and Kneaders and Maglebys and Utah State etc. I love Presidente, and I love all the other missionaries. It was a really good moment to relax a little and prepare for the second to last week of the transfer! I cańt believe it. The end of the year is coming, and we still have so much work to do.

We were so incredibly blessed this week. We wanted to reach all the standards of the mission (with number of lessons, news etc.) and during the day - each day - I thought, `nossa [ours-?], this day is NOT going all that well', but at the end of the day (and week) I looked back and realized that really things went rather well, that the Lord blessed us immensely, and that it́s possible to get done what needs to get done just getting around to doing it in the best form we possibly can. I am hoping that this is a simile for the mission inteira [entire]. That even though right now Ím not feeling like the results or fruits are being seen of the work wére putting in, but looking back I`ll be able to see the hand of the Lord in all that we did. I know that life as well is a bit like that; we work every day, not knowing if it́s even going to make a difference, but then we arrive and we see - wow, Íve actually done something here. (I am REALLY hoping that that is what ends up happening. we love and teach these people, and we try and give them every opportunity possible, but they decide it́s not what they want. that they dońt want to change, or make the effort. BUT YOU DON`T KNOW WHAT YOU`RE MISSING!!!! have I mentioned Baianos [people of the state of Bahia] are a little famous for being lazy? But that doesńt matter, it́s still possible.)

I have a great deal of hope for everything that́s going to happen from here on out. Miracles are going to happen (are happening) and wére going to see the hand of the Lord (we are seeing it!) So if yoúre feeling a little like your day in, day out is not adding up to much, you know what you should do? Trust in the Lord, seek His guidance, and then do everything to make things work. This life is great, and unique, and it is where wéll find eternal happiness. Yessss! Wére teaching some great people, and Ím excited for the month of December (some pretty great things are going to happen . . . )

I love this gospel. I am thankful for the infinite power of love, for the words of our leaders (prophets!) and for the opportunity to repent, to change, to be better. I am thankful for my daaarling family, and for their good example, and for the chance to be serving the Lord in this crazy world.

I hope that all is well (and that yoúre all getting pretty thrilled for Christmas, I know I am.)

love love love,
Sister Cornwall

Monday, November 21, 2011

The "e-mail" this week consisted of a few lines of "chatting" between Sister Cornwall and her Mom on various issues. Below are some snippets that may be of general interest.

Sister Cornwall has a regulated amount of time on the computer once each week. This very limited block of time allows her to read all e-mails received in the previous week AND for writing and sending her e-mail(s).
With Sister Cornwall's letter getting shorter and shorter it is probably the case that on weeks with several incoming e-mails to read there is not much time for Sister Cornwall to type an outgoing letter. To allow Sister Cornwall plenty of time to share as much as possible each week it may be a good idea to send chatty, lengthy letters via USPS and keep e-mails somewhat short and to the point. Then we can all benefit from hearing more about her day to day activities and feelings.

... hooray for Kevin [Misrahe, on hearing of his mission to Milan] ! Goodness, that is the BEST thing he could possibly do. I love missions. and happy holidays by the way. We were going to have a Thanksgiving party today... it́s strange to think that those things are happening.

Guess what, we ate lunch with the family that wéll eat lunch with Christmas . . . and we may or may not have discussed a few details about that special day.


They [the family with whom we will spend Christmas] do [have a computer] . . . and yes, Skype is most certainly an option! Ím not sure about the details of the day, but wéll probably spend a good portion of the day there. Theýre probably one of my favorite families in the ward.


I miss you guys. and can you tell Dad how grateful I am for him? I hear about too many fathers that are too irresponsible, too uncaring, too unfaithful. and I will always be grateful for my incredible father. Thank you most sincerely.


Herés a little letter...:

I cańt seem to get a hold on these weeks. They are just falling away, and the year is nearing an end - but we have a lot to do before that point.

Okay, Celia and Carlos wereńt baptized (nor married) this week. All that will happen Saturday. It is a big deal!!! We worked incredibly hard this week and improved in ways I never have on my mission. We made leaps and strides in our little numbers, and tried to be very, very united with the rest of our district. I know that the Lord recognizes our efforts and that He is always trying to give us everything He can to help us. I am so grateful for the opportunity to learn and grow. To make mistakes and get better!

love love love,
Sister Cornwall

Monday, November 14, 2011


This week we were . . . working harder than ever you could say. We have had some good experiences, and - if you believe it - a few more experiences that were difficult. First of all, it was raining. A lot. I wore two sweaters, and tights and close toed shoes. And we used an umbrella the entire day. Plus this month there are a ton of holidays. Suffice it to say that I needed a little reprimanding when I got cynical and was lacking faith. But the incredible thing is, there is always room to go up. There were times this week where I thought that there is not a chance for these people! They are stubborn and ignorant with closed hearts (sorry Conquista!) but guess what - it´s not about those people, it´s not even about me! There is something truly great and inspiring and uplifting knowing that our Father in Heaven has a handle on this work. We talked a little bit about some of the churches that talk against the [LDS] church. Unfortunately. They even talk about the dangers of these two little missionaries. I know, we are pretty frightening. But the thing that is incredible, is that we´re not alone. Those that don´t have very nice things to say aren´t against the frankly pathetic work of these two young women; they KNOW that there are legions working with us. And what´s more, the inimigo [enemy] knows. It´s incredible that the restored gospel of Jesus Christ opens our vision. We are capable of SO much more. More peace, more happiness, more strength, more confidence.

If you believe in God, I mean, if you´re really going to believe in some mighty being that watches over us, that is all omnipotent and that truly guides our paths, why not let him be everything? Why NOT let Him provide you with the power to to more with your life?

I thought a lot about faith this past week. (perhaps because I was lacking slightly.) And I know that maybe faith seems like this blind, flimsy motive that can deceive us into letting horrible things happen. (believe me, I´ve already pondered this unfortunate possibility.) But then - then - when I seek to have faith, to just allow my Heavenly Father to have more influence, believing that He´s aware of my situation - something happens. There´s more peace, and purpose and calm. I need to let Him play a more significant role in my life. I´m not capable of getting through this work (and the rest of my life) alone. A few wise individuals this week enlightened me regarding the relationship between faith, hope and charity (fé, esperança e caridade) and how amor [love] is the force that God works by. And yet we´re grounded by our faith and our hope in what´s going to come. I´m so grateful.

We´re hoping for a casamento [marriage] AND a batismo. I would love for you to include Celia and Carlos in your prayers. This week is important.

love love love,
Sister Cornwall

Monday, November 7, 2011

Dear family and friends,

It was quite the week. I went to Salvador Monday night and arrived Tuesday for a training. We had pancakes and Burger King to show what a privilege it is. Suffice it to say I was feeling very small. But I'm grateful for the things I´m learning. There were a few events this week where I made errors. Misjudgments. But it´s a good thing we´re here in this life to learn. We worked hard this week, and we´re trying to put everything together. I´m grateful for this added consciousness to reevaluate how I act as a missionary and to get some things in line.
So, Sister C. Silva is my companion. She´s from the interior of São Paulo and she´s a dear. She is very calm and really is liking the work. I´m being a little tougher than I think I´d anticipated, but I just want her to learn how to work. I want her to see the beauty of this work, and the goodness of the Lord. I´m working out feeling the responsibility and turning more to Lord considering I no longer have a companheira older than I am to turn to.
I know that our Father in Heaven loves us. He wants us to learn and be better, and sometimes we need to struggle a little bit to arrive. We are hoping for a couple of weddings in the near future, which is great because it will lead to baptism.

How grateful I am for a Savior that literally gave His life. He wants to help us carry our burdens and He wants us feel happiness. This life is the time to work these kinds of things out. Also, I know the family is the way to make it happen. How grateful I am for my family . . . and for prayer, and the sacrament. This is the fullness of the gospel. It is good.

love love love,
sister cornwall

P.S. And your package arrived!!! with granola bars and post its. so there´s hope!