Monday, February 27, 2012

This week, the Lord was just so good to us. We worked, and it seemed like it wasn't going to work out . . . and then it did. We had two people at church after four weeks with no one. I am feeling so grateful for the opportunity to synchronize our efforts 100% with the will of Pai Celestial [Heavenly Father]. He has everything under control, and I know that it will all work out.

Juliette [widow with 7 small children mentioned in last week's letter] did not go to church, but the great thing is, we are going to keep working with her. I feel like we've been liberated by not working with people that don't want to learn. We are trying to just take advantage of every moment (time is flying) and help these people. Truly sincerely help them. I know that it's all going to work out, and I will send a more detailed update this week. Oh but I was inspired by Deutoronmy 8:2 this week - if you have a Bible, please read, and know that your 40 days in the wilderness are known to the Lord.

love, love,love,


p.s. Hey mom and darling dad. Oh I feel just that much closer chatting with you right now. That is MARVELOUS that you got to be with your momma [in Arizona for her birthday]. She is pretty stellar. I feel like I haven't talked to you in a while. I actually had a dream last night that I had offended dad and he talked to me from the other side of the street . . .it was so sad. Dad I love you. I thought of you ALL day yesterday [on your birthday] ...

... We really are so incredibly blessed. But I know that the Lord wants to see our faithfulness; if we're being faithful and humble and true, He doesn't necessarily need to try us - so let's keep being faithful and humble and true.

Also, I lost the photo of our entire family. If you could get a print (or three) and send them to me, that would be marvelous. I miss seeing everyone together!

Oh there are plenty of other things I could say, but just know that things are going well.

I love you both dearly.

Monday, February 20, 2012

Queridos Amigos e Família, [Dear Friends and Family]

This week was a blessing from Pai Celestial Heavenly Father] . I remember waaaay back when, when I picked my mission scripture, that was in Proverbs - trust in the Lord with all thine heart and lean not unto thine own understanding, in all thy ways acknowledge Him and He shall direct thy paths.

Truer words were never spoken. This week we tried to include the Lord 100 percent. This is not a duo, this is the work of trio. At the end of the day it seemed like we hadn't done too much, neither at the end of the week, but when we stopped to look at what had happened. It was incredible. I was filled with an incredible desire to work, with so much peace, and with so much LOVE for these people.

It probably helps that we found a family of a mother (Juliette) . . . and 8 darling children. Yes ma'am. The father of 7 died two years ago, so Juliette is doing just about everything, alone. I am in love with this family. You want to know the kids' names? Islan, Islaine, Islaideson, Raira, Raiara, Remerson, Renilson, Linda Vitoria. The youngest never met her dad, which is why her name is "beautiful victory."

The gospel has something that will help every single human being. Especially a family like this one. This life holds difficulties and hardships (some more than others) but there is a plan. Heavenly Father knows what we go through, but He will always give us a way to make it through. Always. But we don't always take advantage. I know that if we can manage to let our own will go - just soften your heart completely- and allow yourself to be calm, knowing that our Pai Celestial will take care of things. You have to have this positivity and this faith actually would be the word I want to use that all will be well, first of all because we have a Savior of the World, that saves us daily - from the difficulties and sadness and shortcomings, because there is a plan, because if we do what we know we should, things will come together . . . and if they don't it's because there's still something we need to learn. I know, this all makes life seem more complicated, but I can speak from experience, there is nothing easier. There is nothing better than feeling that all is well . . . even when it's not. I hope that makes sense. I am excited to work this week and try and help others feel of this love and hope and goodness that we can have. Even as a member of the Church I haven't been letting myself enjoy all the blessings, but at least I'm getting a little closer, baby step by baby step. But that is quite alright.

Have a marvelous glorious week.
Sster Cornwall

Mom, you are incredible. thanks for all your lovin. You ,,, are the greatest and so so good to me. thank you for allowing me to have this experience. it is all true. love, Rach

Monday, February 13, 2012

Well, this week Sister Cornwall learned that you can be doing everything correctly, and still not be doing it all right. I say that because this week we taught good lessons, and met some great people . . . and had no results. Right! Wouldn't that be frustrating.

Well, I think it's because I was sort of doing things how I thought they should be done; that's the funny thing about life - David O. McKay said "next to the gift of life itself, the right to direct that life is the greatest of God's gifts." We taught a lesson to the son a recent convert, and he doesn't believe in God. Not really. That was interesting. This idea that the will of God takes away our agency - is something that bothers him. Frankly, I need all the help i can get. I feel like that's a good sign that you're doing what you should - because you'll see the little things happening, and what needs to happen will. I realized what a great calm we have or can have when we're doing what's right and trusting in this power that's so much bigger than we are. I understand what Jesus Christ did, but I wanted to feel it. I think I was waiting for this rocking sensation to guide my life . . . but that's not what it's about. This life is about simple people doing simple things in the best form possible. We found good people, but something else was lacking for them to continue. And that something could very well be my lack of selflessness and sacrifice and faith in these people. I Know that it's all possible. I know that it's possible when we are in harmony with the natural consequences of the laws that God has put in place.

I had some really great days of study - really learning and learning good things. Also, did I mention that the police have been on strike a couple of weeks - I don't think so. We have been coming home before it gets dark - but the police went back to work, and so will we. We need to put our heart into serving the Lord. I know that that helps. I have sincere desires to help these people, but frankly I think I forget that this isn't an obstacle course that I'm getting through alone, in a perfect way, but we always have phone a friend. and I haven't been utilizing that like I should. I am grateful for the testimony I have. What strength it gives me.

Have a lovely week,
love love love,
Sister Cornwall

P.S. Yes!!! and the name [Emary Sue] - what a marvelous name that girl has. I knew it was coming today. I knew it! That is so marvelous. Thanks for the photos.

I am doing well - got your package! Thank you SO much. Goodness sakes those garments are blessings from heaven. You are wonderful. I got the cards from the Primary and the news clipping. I'll try and write something to the ward and send it along. Love you so so much, Rach

Monday, February 6, 2012

The most recent e-mail letter to Sister Cornwall from her mother included some questions about the transfer and new area. Sister Cornwall answered:

Dad posted a map of your new area and it looks very close to your first two areas. Are they all in the same stake?


Are you in the same district as before?
Yes, as Stella Maris.

Have you seen any of the others sisters that you worked with before?
No, they've all moved on to other areas. But some clothes etc were left behind.

You mentioned that you are a different person and a different missionary than when you served there before - what differences has that made in the work - are you bolder?
I think the biggest difference is that I have experience and I know more what to expect and what needs to happen. The execution is still slow, but it's a more conscious way of working I think. loving to talk to everyone,

Are you enjoying people being out and about?
I do like seeing the people, but one thing about Salvador is that people are usually on the street . . . drinking. And that's annoying and sad.

It sounds like you are bolder in your letter - I like that bold Sister Cornwall.
I only hope the bold Sister Cornwall is able to still working in an effective kind of way.

I am so interested in the suitcases on the bus story - and why don't you think you will ever do it again?
It was just ridiculous. It is a long ways to the bus station - crossing a bridge, going up and down stairs. hauling it up to a bus that hardly has room for people to stand, and it was a REALLy hot day. and I was wearing flip flops. woopsie daisies. Don't tell Dad.

My first week sort of took forever to end . . . and this past one pretty much fled. We worked to try and have some results and it ended up making a bit of a difference.

I read in Ecclesiastes 1 this week - that scripture about "a time to plant, a time to pluck up, a time to hate, a time to love, a time to cry, a time to laugh" (and yes i DID sing the Simon and Garfunkel song okay.) But I have thought a lot about that, and felt very much the desire to be able to discern between those times. I think that is the trick of life. We have talked incessantly in the mission about teaching people, and not lessons (the idea that we don't enter a house and just spill out doctrine, but that we listen and perceive what the need of that person is, and then teach what it is that he/she needs to hear.) It's kind of a fine line. That's the incredible thing about being a human being teacher, and not just a pamphlet deliverer; we are here to invite these people to come unto Christ and HELP them. I have been learning a lot about where my testimony of some of these principles is lacking, and how many rough edges I still need to rub off a bit (read: a LOT.)

We have improved our group a lot (when I got here it was mostly 12 year old boys.) We are working to really focus on people that sincerely want to do God's will. And let me just say, those people aren't incredibly common. It's incredible how the more we go on, the more gaping our weaknesses seem. Though maybe that's just me.

I am developing love for this area little by little. It's just different, but there is PLENTY of work to be done. And learning to happen. And that is great.

love love love,
Sister Cornwall