Monday, November 24, 2014

Be Converted!

Goodmorning America!

Hey so everything is normal in the same not-normal sort of way!  I am happy and my companion is still awesome as ever.  She is definitely getting acustomed to everything and it is way fun to have an American at my side who understands my homeland.  We are working a lot with the members and yesterday I talked in church about how the members can help move the work along!  It was awesome (if I may say so) they cried, they laughed, and now they will work (I hope :)).  I used the talk from Elder Ballard (put your trust in the Lord... I think) from conference last year and talked about two things that might stop members from sharing the gospel.  The first is fear, and the second is simply not knowing how!  So I shared some stories/experiences from my life that have helped me and might be able to help someone else as well.  
First I talked about cookies and how much I love them! haha I love baking them as much as eating them!  I had everyone think about something else in their life that they love and then imagine that thing without someone to share it with... all of a sudden that thing that you love isn´t so great!  So imagine the gospel!  The greatest thing in the world!  We want to share it, we want to bless the lives of those around us and in so doing we also become happier and enjoy more of the blessings for ourselves as well! It is a promise that if we just open our mouths then God will put in our minds the very words that we need to say and this has happened to me so many times!  I remember when I got here to Brazil and could hardly understand or hardly speak and I was so afraid to say the wrong thing but I would pray my heart out and open my mouth and some how God helped me to be able to say something that helped someone understand a little more about Christ, it truly was a miracle every time!  I have had huge regrets for not sharing the gospél with those in my life and I am so thankful for the opportunity that I have to serve now and to change and gain the desire and the courage to talk to everyone because I never again want to feel the guilt of not helping someone come closer to Christ and realizing after that it is too late.  If we just pray for opportunites to share the gospel, the Lord will answer our prayers.  He was enable us to recognize the opportunities and then to talk, to share, to bless.  
We are working our butts of here and the work is moving  along. Yesterday we had a bunch of less actives and recent converts in church along with investigators so that was great!  
Missing you all soooo much but so happy to be here!
This week Sister Ray and I surprised the other sisters so that when they came home at night the house was all decorated and there is a little christmas tree!  Everyone is getting in the mood (even if we are still sweating in the sun when it is supposed to snow).
 Love you!!
Sister Westover




Monday, November 17, 2014

November 14

Hey family!

Thank you to the McOmbers and the Brent and Melanie Westovers for the letters!!  and Amy Biancardi!  Her idea to send to the sisters in the ward has been one of my favorite things ever!! 

This week was just a ton of meetings so it was hard to have a good week of work but the good news is that I am still with Sister Ray (we had transfers but nothing happened in our house fortunately!).  Today we were talking about faith and obedience and how our faith is dependent on our obedience.  If we have faith in Christ then we accept him as our Savior and understand that his path is better that ours.  When we understand that His path is better then we follow him and are obedient and when we are following Christ and are obedient to him, we see miracles!  So the key to faith is in our obedience.  Which is really the only gift that we can give to God. So be obediente!  Seek to know his will and to do his will and you will see miracles!  That is what I am trying to do and even though I am not perfect and am full of weakness I know that I am blessed for every effort that I give to be more obedient on the journey to perfection.

Love you !!
Britt

Friday, November 7, 2014

Mission life is never predictable!

I am doing well! 
My companion (Sister Ray/ Becca) has been sick lately which has been hard as we are supposed to be doing divisions with all of the other sisters but I know that the Lord will take care of us and it is all in His plans!  Sister Ray is awesome.  she was in the MTC with me but in another district and then served in the states for a year.  I LOVE my new area and ward!  It is the most functioning ward that I have been in and the members here are AMAZING.  That is a huge difference from  most of the other wards in the misison (all members are awesome but some don´t like to serve so much or participate in the missionary work).  We are teacing a lot of people!  We have 8 baptismal dates for this week but never all of them work out so we will see how this week goes! They are Kelvia and Clevam (they are married and have two little kids that are 7 and 3), Tinale and Daniel and their son Ikaro, Ferreira and Lucia (also married and older), and a girl that is 21 Lorena.  They are all amazing and I am loving all of the people that we are teaching!  We have baptized one little girl (Adria) when we were here but her parents are also investigating they just need to get married to be baptized but the whole family is awesome! 
We are also teaching another couple (Thais and Fransisco) that isn´t married and has one little boy and they are so great!  They are having some financial problems and so on Sunday is usually when they go to the market to sell things and make money to pay the bills and such so it is a sacrifice for them to go to church.  This last week Sister Ray and I were praying so hard for them to see miracles and recognize the blessing of the gospel and we fasted for them too.  On Sunday they went to church even though they were needing to work and on the way back home Thais found 50 reais in the street!  She was able to pay the bills and had some money left over! I almost cried yesterday when she told me because it was so clear that God had answered all of our prayers and our fast.  We always have to act in faith and then the blessing come!
I was SO EXCITED to hear that you will be in the stake relief society presidency! How awesome!!  What a great opportunity to serve! 
 
I love you! I am working harder than I have ever worked in my life and giving all that I have.  Sometimes I honestly feel like I have nothing left in me and I just want to fall on the ground and die because my body is so dang tired and my mind is exhausted and I am trying to focus and my spirit is worn out and I am praying so hard for Heavenly Father to keep supporting me so that I can keep going and I am just holding on to whatever I get from him.  But the miracle is that I always  keep going and keep teaching and at the end of the day, regardless of what happened, I know that I gave my all. I am so grateful to be a missionary.
Love you soooo much!
Sister Brittany Westover

Hi everyone!

Hi Everyone!
This week Sister Ray got sick so I have been trying to take care of her... a missionary without a voice is kind of ironic.  But I am just talking more so that she can rest her voice... no need to worry, no matter how much I have changed there is still one thing that is the same... I love to talk haha.  Except when I get home I think that it will be really difficult to talk in normal english because sometimes I try to talk with Sister Ray in english and she just laughs at me.  I always thought it was pathetic when missionaris said that they ´´forgot´´ their own language and they were just trying to show that they are all cool speaking another language... but warning: this isn´t true.  Not that we forget our own language but we forget how to use it!  One thing that I love in the house that I am now is that we have a shower head outside behind our house and the sun heats the water during the day and at night the air cools down and I can take a hot shower outside! It´s the best thing ever!  Sister Ray is the BEST... I cannot explain how I love working with her!  It is the best to be around people that make you want to be better.  Not just kinder but happier, healthier, funnier, more intelligent, more inpiring to others, wiser, more selfless etc.  Always try to surround yourself with good company because you will be like them!  It reminds me of that play... (thoroughly modern milly?) when the guy says ´´I like rich people.  I like the way rich people live. I like the way I live when I´m with rich people!´´ haha we can apply that in our lives every day!  If we surround ourselves with people who are more like Christ, we too will alter our lives to be more like Him. Something that I love about Sister Ray, she makes me want to be better!
The other thing I was thinking this week is that temperance is a virtue!  We have to have balance in all things.  We need to have patience with ourselves but never get too comfortable with what we have already done.  We need to be humble and recognize that we are nothing compared to God but have confindence that we can do all things with God.  We need to take care of ourselves and seek to better our lives, but also be selfless and serve others in every opportunity.  Temperance allows us to have balance in our lives so that we may continue, day by day, on our straight and narrow path to perfection.  And for every time that we stray the path and lose our balance, the grace of Christ is there to life us up, put us back on the path and make our weaknesses strong! Love the gospel and the perfect plan that God has given us!
Love you all sooooo much!!
Sister Brittany Westover

blue is for baptism







The baptismal font overflowed and it was draining so we had to grab buckets and drain the water ourselves!

Casteloooo

Hey fam!
One more week here in the miss ahh.  I am absolutely LOVING my companion and my area and everything!  The area is actually really ugly but it is a really good area to work in so I am liking it!  My companion is soo great :) I love sister Ray!  She served for a long time in the states and so it is way fun to be able to remember the things that I learned there and apply everything that we have learned in our two missions right now!  We have been feeling the spirit really strongly in our lessons and it is the best thing ever to feel that God is using you to bless others.  Right now we are teaching a bunch of families... I love this!  Not like huge families but some young couples who don´t have kids or have one or two.  It is amazing to see the difference that the gospel makes in our lives when we create a home that centers itself in the teachings of Christ. I am soo grateful for Mom and Dad.  I feel like I say the same thing every week but it is because every single day that I am here I really am overwhelmed by the grattitude I feel to have grown up where I did, with who I did, in the gospel, with the experiences that I gained. We are so extremely blessed and don´t ever forget it!!
I am really happy and loving the mission! Trying to use every moment that God gives me.  I hope that all is in order and everyone is happy at home!
Love you all!
Britt

Transfers!

Hey Fam!
So did everyone LOVE conference?? It is always the best!!! I am now in Castelo with Sister Ray (another American!) and super excited to start working here.  Transfers are really hard but always excited because it gives you a chance to start everything all over again and you get a different kind of hope and excitement for things to come!  But I am super sad that I won´t be in Aracati any more... I absolutely loved that area! 
Elder Bednar´s talk was so great! and made me think a bunch.  I thought about how much I have changed in the last year and couple months and how my focus in my life has really changed.  I think that probably I have a lot of friends that wonder why I only talk about religion now haha or probably even my family has noticed that I am different than I was when I left but for whoever is reading this and wondering what has changed I just want share one thing with you!  We all have difficulties and trials in this life time and whatever they may be there lies an answer in the wonderfully perfect path of the gospel of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ!  I am not here on my mission, and I don´t write home, just to convince people to believe the same things that I believe or to increase the statistical numbers in the church.  It is because I want to share with everyone (especially those that I love) somethings that is very dear to my heart and has helped me overcome the most challenging moments in my life and find the peace and pure happiness that we all want to enjoy in this life!  It is a joy unlike anything I have ever experienced to be able to look back at how I have changed and to see the lives that I have been able to touch.  The mission is a weird thing but it is also such a blessing!  Sometimes I wonder what the heck I am doing in Brazil, speaking in Portuguese, walking 24/7 with a complete stranger and talking to more strangers about how to find happiness but it has changed my life!  Wouldn´t this world be a better place if everyone really sought to bless their family, friends and neighbors, or even complete strangers, with someting as life changing as the knowledge of a Savior?  We don´t invite people to change their beliefs... we invite ALL to take their beliefs (whether they be Christian, or don´t know if God exists) and to learn more and test out the truthfulness of what we teach.  
I know that this church is the only church on the earth that has the power and authority to act in God´s name.  I know that it is the restored church and gospel of our Redeemer, Jesus Christ.  I know that the only way that we have to make it through this life and fulfill our purpose to grow and improve and live with God again is through our Savior.  This is God´s plan for us, and how marvelous it is! Just put it to the test.  Those who have doubts, or questions, or a desire to understand more, or think that they already have it all, just put it to the test.  Ask and ye shall recieve, knock and it shall be opened unto you! :)
Love you all!
Sister Westover

Happy Saturdayy... and conference!

The fact that I am finishing my time on the computer on Saturday shows you what my week has been like!  I haven´t even been in my area for more than a couple hours this week.  We had sisters conference on Pday and then mission conference on Tuesday and on Wednesday my companion went to the doctor in Fortaleza, Thursday I traveled back to my area (4 hours) with my companion, ate lunch, and then the secretary called saying that I had to go back to Fortaleza that same day to do some things with Sister Johnson´s visa on Friday morning!  So we went back and figured it all out yesterday  and got to my area today just in time to catch the end of the first session of conference.  This week was a little strange seeing as to the fact that I hardly did any missionary work but it also made me grateful for two things: 1. To be a missionary 2. The will of God.
1. Not talking about the gospel all day long is exhausting (I never thought that I would say that).  I absolutely LOVE being able to focus on other people´s needs all day long and forget my own worries and wants to bless the lives of those around me!  I can guarantee that if you are sad or tired or lonely or feeling any type of weight on your shoulders there is a cure... service!  It doesnt make a lot of sense to put other peoples burdens on your shoulders when you are feeling overwhelmed yourself but I promise that there is magic in service.  When we make GOOD sacrifices to be able to help others we will forget our own problems and find a much happier and more fulfilling life!
2.  I tried every day this week to get to my area so that we could get a good week of work in before general conference and it was really hard for me to let go of my plans and go with what we had to do but I was reminded once again that God literally has a plan for all of us and many times, may I add most of the time, it is not the same plan that we have for ouselves!  If I have learned one thing on the mission it is that you should do all you can, love all you can, plan as best as you can, and then be willing to "let go and let God".  There is no point in complaining or getting upset or sad or stubborn when things don't work out the way that you planned because God ALWAYS has a better plan that will help you and bless you more than your own plan in the end!  So just remember... do all you can happily and leave the rest to Him :).
Love you!
Sister Brittany Westover

The States

Hey home:)

So there was already a transfer again!  God knows that I need to keep changing I think because he doesn´t let me stay comfortable for too long!  Larissa (Sister J Lima) went home :( because she had already been in the mission for 4 months and she is still going to serve her own mission next year.  I am training an American, Sister Johnson, who has already served for 10 months in the states and just got here to our mission.  She is really sweet and I know that the transition is really hard for her so I´m trying to lift her spirits so that she loves it here too!  This week I was in Fortaleza to get my companion so we didn´t have a ton of time to work but I did have a cool experience!
First, because we didn´t have a lot of time to work it was a lot harder to get people to go to church and so I knew that the number of visitors would be pretty sad so I prayed a lot that God would bless all of the work that we have been doing and help us to have people in church.  When we got to sacrament meeting there was a visitor (in my two months here there has never been a visitor that I didn´t invite) that was interested in the church!  I wanted so badly to talk to him but I had gotten really sick and forgot my medicine in the house so after the meeting we went to get my medicine and when we got back he wasn´t there!  I was so sad that we didn´t get his adress or even get to talk to him.  After lunch we were on our way to our first appointment and guess who was walking through the park in our direction? woohooo how amazing is Heavenly Father!  The visitor, Gabriel, was on his way to his house and just happened to pass the park in the same minute we did!  So we stopped and taught the Restoration to him and he loved it!  If everything goes well he wants to be baptized next week! Pray for him!
Also we are getting to know every single member here in Aracati and I am loving it because there are a lot of people that have fallen away from the church or that just let life create a bunch of problems that they never overcame and now we can help them!  I am excited to change this place!
Love you all!
Britt (Sister West)

Canoa

Hey!
So I don´t really have a lot to say but hi!  I miss you all a tonnnn but can´t believe that I will be home in 5 months!!  I love my area right now!  It is ten minutes from one of the pretiest beaches in the world (Canoa Quebrada).  I have had 5 baptisms in 8 weeks here and have had 2 companions.  We live with two other sisters that are super awesome and we get to do 2 divisions every week which I love!  One of our investigators is a teacher in Canoa and so he gave us a bunch of referals of his students to visit so last week we went with the other sisters (because it is in their area) and visited some of the students and then they lead us into 2 different classrooms to leave a message with the students!  how cool!!!! We taught the restoration in front of 30 kids and a teacher (one of the coolest experiences that I have had) and then left another message with the Book of Mormon in another class.  It was really awesome to see how that city has been prepared to accept the gospel and how well everyone recieved us!  Today we are going to the beach (not to the beach but to the city) to buy some things to take home and so I wanted to know if any of you have somethings specific that you want from Brazil? Havaiana flip flops?  bracelet? ´painting? etc.  and if you could put money in my account... if not I will do my best to save! haha I am so so grateful for the opportunity that I have to serve and I am loving every minute that I have here!  I feel really blessed to be serving in this mission and to learn all of the lessons that I am learning.  All of the exhaustion and the hunger and thirst and sickness and sadness and trial is worth it to be just a little bit closer to my Savior.  Do what you can to grow closer to Christ!  He is calling us all day every day! 
Love you all!! 
Britt

Write your story.

Happy Monday!  I think that I have never loved Monday´s like I love them on the mission haha.  But I hope you are all enjoying your Monday :).  I don´t know what I have updated you on and what I haven´t so I will start with the transfer from two weeks ago.  Sister Mobley left me :( I will miss her a ton because I seriously love that woman to death!  But the good news is that I am still here in Aracati and my companion is Larissa!  I don´t know if you remember the girl that always did exchanges with me in Novo Oriente when I got to Brazil (I always took pictures with her when we saw each other in the stake center...?) anyway she is doing like a practice mission that they do here and she has been serving in our mission for two transfers and now is my companion!  It´s like the coolest thing ever!  I love having a friend at my side!  The only hard part is calling her Sister J Lima and not Larissa.  
So I think you have all seen the ´´my family´´ pamphlet that the church has.  Well we have been using because we have to explain it to all of our baptisms and they have to fill it out before they are baptized.  Anyway this week when we were explaining it to a girl that we are teaching Sister J Lima (Larissa) said something that I couldn´t stop thinking about: ´´You get to write your own story here!´´  I kept thinking about the truthfulness of that statement.  God created us to act and not to be acted upon and because of that we get to write our own story!  We get to decide what we want to do, who we want to follow, what we like and don´t like, who we will become!  How amazing is that!  I guess I had heard it a million times but I hadn´t really understood it until now.  So our decisions are super important because they write our story, they shape our future!  How we will make sure that we are writing the story that we want? There is a quote from one of the best talks by Elder Uchtdorf that goes like this:
´´ No, God does not need us to love Him. But oh, how we need to love God!
For what we love determines what we seek.
What we seek determines what we think and do.
What we think and do determines who we are—and who we will become.´´
So it is when we love God that we align our priorities as they should be, that we make the best decisions, that we have a happier and more blessed life!  A better story!  and the best part is that there will be a happy ending.  How great is the love that our God has for us... don´t you think we could at least try to reflect a part of that?  We are, after all, His children.
This week, write your story as you would like it to be written!  Love God, seek God, think God, become like God.
Love you all!
Sister Westove

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

August 26, 2014


Hey again!
hey first mom I think I wrote a mass email two week ago!  That had a link to a video! actually, I think I wrote one last week also...?
But this week I wanted to talk a little bit about the importance to perservere!
So often when things go badly we want to give up.  At least I know that there are times that I just want to be in my bed, in Oregon, with my mom at my side letting me cry as much as I want.  But if I could go there whenever I wanted I don´t think that I would ever get anything done!  Life is supposed to be hard, and at times we are supposed to feel rejected, or lonely or lost or that we are in unjust circumstances but it is what we do in these circumstances that makes the difference!  The only thing that truly matters is your relationship with God and when you are in these hard conditions you have the opportunity to truly grow closer to the Lord!  He loves you and he knows you and even when you feel that no one understands or that God isn´t hearing your prayers, I can assure you, Christ understands perfectly and God IS hearing your prayers!  Just keep going!  Keep praying!  Keep becoming better!  Don´t be an object to be acted upon... be something that acts!  A friend sent a saying that I really like about our suffering and difficulties and I wanted to share with you also! "How is it that a loving God would allow us to suffer? I have come to realize that my Savior cares more about my growth than He does about my comfort. One evidence of His love is that He does not spare me from the suffering I need for my development and progression, even when I get mad at Him" We just have to rely on our Savior and trust that he has the power to help us overcome everything that we face in life.  Everything will work out for our good!
Sorry it´s short but was my thought today! 

Love you all!!
Britt (Sister Westover)

August 11, 2014


Oi again!
Wow the weeks really are FLYING by!  I think evey single day when Sister Mobley and I leave the house I always say the same thing... ´´can you believe that it is August (the date of the day)??´´ haha literally every day feels like it is slipping through my fingers way faster than I can handle!  But the good thing about that is it means that I really am focusing on these people I am teaching and the service we are giving!
I am teaching a family that I have absolutely fallen in love with!! Her name is Irlinha and his name is Carlos and they have at least 4 boys (there are always different people in the house and I have the worst memory now that I have to keep close to 100 names and adresses and details in my head so I am not sure on how many kids).  One of their sons is less active, Luanderson, and they have an Emmanuel and Lucas who are the youngest boys and absolutely adorable!  I feel so at home when we teach them sometimes I wonder if I really didn´t know them before (but of course I did... in heaven.. so it´s not even a question).  She has the biggest heart of anyone I have ever met and is always making me laugh!  Last night we went to teach them because they hadn´t been to church and they were all super sick so we just left a message really quick but she didn´t let us leave without giving us smoothies and crackers haha no one knows me better.  But teaching them has reminded me of two things:
1.  They have a son who doesn´t have a leg.  I´m pretty sure he lost it in an accident.  That is something that has been a trial for their family and especially for Irlinha.  She wanted to know why bad things happen to good people and why this had to happen to him.  I remembered that life is not supposed to be easy!  It is meant to be hard so that we can learn and grow and become something better.  Also there is always going to be opposition in all things. But most importantly that EVERYTHING will be made right through the Atonement of Christ!  Because he died and lived again we all have the opportunity to live again.  All of our natural imperfections will be taken away and Luanderson one day will have his leg again, not just his leg but his body will be made perfect!  How amazing is our Father who created a plan so perfect for each one of us! That is a gift that we will all have, regardless of our life here!
2.  We were placed in our families on purpose! :) God knew what our family would be life, who we would argue with or disobey and who we would ultimately love and who would make us strive to be better.  Through the authority and power to act in God´s name (priesthood) in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints we can live with our famlies for eternity. I can´t imagine any other life without my family (this past year has been hard enough without you guys) and thanks to God´s plan for us and the Savior´s church on the earth we can be sealed to our families forever in holy temples.

something to think about!  Talk to the missionaries :)


I love you all a lot!!! Hope you have a good week :)
Britt (Sister Westover)

Sister Do Val!  I love this woman!!




Tuesday, August 5, 2014

8/5/14

       
                                                       my district leader and companion
                                     
                                         companion outside the house of our investigator (Fransisca)
               
                                                           
                                                                 Geovane baptism!


                                                               Fransisca Baptism

                                                              Two boys that I love

Monday, August 4, 2014

07/21/14: Pay to Pee


Good morning America!

This week was fun! I´m getting to know my new area... that has a church building! woohoo!! and getting to know the members.  The Sisters here a little while back met some young teenage boys (like 12-15 years old) and they all have fallen in love with the church and over the last few months tons of them have been baptized so the young mens program is really big! haha they are so dang cute though and they love the Sisters! It´s so fun to hear all of their stories and how they came to know the church and gain a testimony and they have been helping us out a lot! They go out with us to teach their friends families and want to introduce us to everyone, it is seriously so great!  Yesterday one of them didn´t go to church so we passed by to teach his family (that aren´t members) and to make sure that everything was okay with him.  I asked him how was his experience in the church and he started telling me about how he loved it from the first time he went.  He said his favorite part is the sacrament because it is so calm and you can feel closer to Christ.  Then I asked him if he prayed to know if the church is true and he told me like this:
´´It was funny because it was the very same day that I woke up and I was thinking ´do you think I´m really in the right church?´and then the sisters passed by my house that day  and told me to pray and ask God if it was true and he would give me an answer.  So that night I asked God if the church was true and he told me it was.  So I know I´m in the right church.´´

I just about died hearing the testimony of this little boy because it was so clear to him that God talks to us and hears and answers our prayers.  He didn´t have any doubt that he had recieved revelation directly from our Heavenly Father.  I was thinking a lot about prayer this week and how we literally have the opportunity to talk to the Ruler of the Universe and he talks back!  So many times we complicate things and we don´t recognize the whisperings or promptings of the spirit in our life that he gives us as a response.  All we need it to believe that he will respond, have a sincere heart and an intent to act on the answer that we will recieve!  It is a simple recipe for the best counsel you will ever recieve!  So this week seek out an answer to a prayer that you have been needing to say!

soo the title of my email was my shock of the week!!  We all know how I have problems with the fact that I constantly need to relieve myself of all of the water that I drink.  Yeah that is a rough thing sometimes in the life of a missionary here in Brazil.  I don´t know how many sketchy bathrooms I have used or how many random people have let me into their houses (yes this can and has been used to our benefit).  BUT last week I had to travel from Fortaleza to Aracati, which takes 3 hours and I was dying before we got on the bus so I went to use the bathroom in the rodoviaria (bus station place) and I totally had to PAY!!  I could not believe it!  Literally I was so shocked that I had to use my own money to relieve myself in a sanitary place!  I was tempted to just pee right there because 1. I am poor and 2. this pay to pee deal is ridiculous!  Anyway,  it made me grateful that I live in a place where I can drink as much water as I want and not worry about my financial situation afterwards.

Love you all!
Sister Westover

last night with sister palacios eating cold cereal!  that was the best!! it´s been wayy too long

Last Morning




July 16, 2014: Transfers!


Hey hey!

So the last few weeks have been kind of crazy with the cup and having to stay in house during the Brazil games and then this week we havd transfers and we had to go to the doctor yesterday for my new companion so I finally got to my NEW area last night!  I am now in aracati!! woo hoo :)  it is super hot, and next to the beach haha so a little different as a missionary but I am so excited to work here!  I already miss Pajuçara soo much but I am way excited to have a new area and such a pretty one at that.  Sister Palacios and I had to split up :/ but we finished training and she is totally ready to show the area to her new companion!  My companion now is Sister Mobley (american) and she is already like cracking me up haha so that´s good!  She has already been in the area 5 months so she´s got everything down and she works way hard which is such a great quality in any companion so I am super excited to work with her! :)

It broke my heart a little bit to leave Pajuçara but I know that I need to be here now and I am so happy to still be in the mission... It was so weird to leave after 6 months there and I remembered NIki going home and I just thought how awful it would be to have to leave the mission completely!  One day I can worry about that but for now I am happy as ever to be here :)  When we got here yesterday at night we went out really quick to buy food for breakfast today and a member called our name from across the street and introduced us to her friend to teach!  That was literally the best welcome to my new area possible! haha

I don´t really have a lot new because I already forgot what happened last week and I don´t know anything about my new area other than it takes 3 hours to get here.  But I am happy, healthy, busy, bronzed, and excited for what the future holds! I hope that eveything is great at home! 
LOVE YOU!
Sister Westover


July 8th 2014


Sister Palacios and I
Fourth of July (we were in the house all day so I had time on my hands and red lipstick tube in my hands)


Emily (one of our investigators who I love!) Also her sister is our investigator and she is a hairstylist.... yes I always try to find people who will bless the community to teach.
and our doctor in physical therapy.... she is the greatest!  yeah I had some problems in my hips.  But know big deal I just keep pushing on :)






06/30/14: Part 2


06/24/14: Daddy's Girl


I know that my Happy Father´s Day is a little late but... Happy Father´s Day!! 

 I love both of my parents DEEPLY and EQUALLY but I know that I would be lying if I didn´t admit that I know I have always been a daddy´s girl. Yes, Dad, i think that your jokes are funny and I was always laughing when I was trying to pretend that I didn´t hear them.  This week I thought a lot about the role of a father in a family and I remembered a lot of tucked away memories that I have with my own.  I remembered how I never liked to drink milk plain but one time I saw Dad drink milk with ice cubes and I thought that it was so cool that I don´t know for how many years I told all of my friends that I only drank milk if it had ice cubes... just like my dad.  I remembered a time that I refused to go to bed (sorry mom!) until Dad tucked me in but he came home so late that I had already fallen asleep on the staircase waiting for him.  I remembered waking up early with Brooklynn when we lived in Texas to eat grapefruit and sugar with Dad before he left for work.  I remembered telling of the the volleyball team gossip to Dad with Maria and we were laughing for hours.  I remembered all of the times Dad sat me down to talk about life and I thought about a lot of struggles and hearbreak that I could have avoided if I had still been smart enough to follow the counsel of a dear father.
I am immensely grateful for a father who always was an example of another loving father that we all share in common, the Eternal father of our spirits, our Father in Heaven.  I am grateful for my earthly father who always reminded me that I am a daughter of a Heavenly Father and always encouraged me to reach my divine potential which is so much greater than I ever imagined.  I am grateful that my dad taught me eternal principles when my perspective was focused on earthly matters. Because of recent tragedies at home I wanted to share with my dear family and friends insight that I recieved from my dad about the plan of our loving, all powerful Heavenly Father.

Part 1 (second part to come next week!)
Faith, Hope, Charity and Gratitude-
When we have faith in Jesus Christ, that He lives and that he payed for our sins, that he created the way for us to return to live in God´s presence, we will have hope!  We have hope that despite every difficulty, sadness, tragedy or trial that we have passed or will have to pass, there is a better world ahead of us.  We have hope in a future that is free of pain and suffering.  A hope that is ´´through the Atonement of Jesus Christ and the power of his ressurrection, to be raised unto life eternal.´´  A hope that is an anchor to our souls in this storm-beaten sea of life.  With this hope we begin to understand the love that God, our Eternal Father, and his son, Jesus Christ, have for us.  A love that lead God to sacrifice his perfect son and that lead Christ to suffer and bleed from every pore and eventually die for us.  The prophet of the world today, Thomas S, Monson, spoke of this love saying: ´´that love never changes... it is there for you when you are sad or happy, discouraged or hopeful.  God´s love is there for you whether or not you feel you deserve it.  It is simply always there.´´  We can be the angel in someone´s life in expressing and extending this Christlike love.

06/16/14: Be grateful that we are children of a loving Heavenly Father


This week I thought a lot about gratitude.  I know that life is hard, it isn´t fair, it is a mess and a challenge all at the same time.  The great thing is that God knows us, and he loves us perfectly because we are His children.  He chose his perfect child to send to this world and suffer and die to make up for the injustice that exists.  All that is unfair in this life can be made right through the atonement of Christ.  If you don´t know how, come to know our Savior!  He offers peace, rest, love, happiness for all of us!  All we have to do is follow Him.  God is way too good to us, recognize the blessings that you have in your life and talk to the missionaries, they offer a message of our savior that will change your life for the better!
I love you all :)
Britt
Sister Westover 

June 9th 2014


Hey everyone!  Sorry I really don´t have a lot to say this week!  Our time on the computer is now like 50 minutes so that goes by super fast!  I miss you all tons but I am still happy as ever here!  I hope that everything is going really well at home!

A thought I had this week:
sometimes we are waiting and praying and expecting HUGE miracles!  Yes, miracles do exist and sometimes huge miracles occur, but sometimes the miracle is in the little occurances of every day that add up and then after some time become something great.  Last night I just had the scripture ´´by small and simple means, great things come to pass´´ in my head and I thought about how every day I am seeing miracles even if we don´t have visions or raise anyone from the dead, God is allowing us to learn and grow and giving us just what we need to be able to keep going and that is amazing in and of itself! So my invitation for you all this week is notice the little miracles in your life, the tender mercies of our loving Heavenly Father and give thanks for these things!

I love you TONS!
Britt (Sister Westover)

06/02/14


Josenilson :) he is Dad of Joilton and grandpa of Wesley.  His daughter was baptized in another city with Sister Morais!  I love this guy.  This is the last peanut butter jar you gave me haha but I decorated it with pictures of Jesus and every time that Josenilson feels the desire to smoke or drink he will put his money to buy cigarros ou bebidas in the jar and then we will use this money to marry him and his wife!  Oh how the life of a missionary is creative.

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Oi familia!


Oi familia! 

Today for pday we had a little party with our district and played volleyball outside at the church and had breakfast!  It was so fun but I think I will definitely be sore tomorrow...  Who knew that jeans and sports could make a person so happy!?  At least now I know that I have one thing to look forward to in 9 months!  I made chocolate pancakes for the district and all of the brazilians were loving them haha, they may have good fruit but America pretty much has got them beat with everything else. ;)

Funny story... last night we were getting ready for bed and getting our clothes ready to leave in the morning to play volleyball after our studies.  Everyone was trying on jeans because it´s been ages since anyone used them (other than my companion who is new haha) and we wanted to be sure they fit. My companion went to grab a bag of clothes that she had a she started screaming and jumping up and down screaming ´´rat!´´  Oh my gosh I like totally freaked out... it is impossible for a rat to get into our house so I didn´t believe here but still...  Anyway everyone went to stand on chairs or on the staircase and she grabbed the umbrella to carefully (and with enough distance) move the sack of clothes anddddd it totally was a rat!!!  You can imagine how our little condo was jumping with four missionaries freaking out!  There also happened to be a turantula living in front of the house so we called the neighbor to take care of that little guy, he was showering so while we waited for him we stopped the man delivering pizza at the neighbors to find the rat and take him out.  All of the neighbors were peaking out of the windows to figure out what was going on.  The good news is the guy who was delivering pizza reminded me a ton of Robbie (who I need to email back!) and he was totally interested and gave us his address so we will pass this week!  woo hoo!

This week was fun!  My companion is getting the hang of things and we found a bunch of really cool people this week to start teaching!  We are really working to find families so if you could pray for this that would be awesome!  This last week I met the coolest girl!!  She is has 13 years and reminds me a lot of me (but that´s not why she is cool haha).  Her name is Nicole and she is like way mature and was so excited to talk to us about our message. She had the best questions that were like perfect for the lesson and while we were talking I could totally see her serving a mission!  So pray for her too please :)

This is my week!  I love you all tons!!!  

Sister Westover

"What my mom taught me"



It was SO GOOD to see the fam!!! Sheesh, que saudades!  If I could skype every couple of weeks I think I would stay on my mission forever!  It was so great to talk to you guys (Sky I missed you tons!!) and to see everyone and at the same time it reminded me why I am here, what I am doing, and that I wouldn´t rather be anywhere else in the world right now!  It was a good little  boost that I was needing :)

HAPPY MOTHERS DAY MOM!!  I was thinking a lot about you this week and everything that you taught me over the years to allow me to be the person, and missionary that I am now!  Here are some of the things that help me each and every day:

1. Be happy.  Life is better when you are smiling, when you are laughing, when  you are genuinely happy!  Yes, we all face trials and difficulties in life, but life is to be enjoyed!  I have so many moments when I could choose to be sad and tired and give up a little, but I remember that I am the daughter of Kimberli Westover, and I am extremely blessed, I have absolutely no reason in the world not to be happy, and this lets me keep going strong!

2. Count your blessings.  In everything we do there will be opposition so life is clearly better when you choose to find the good.  Many times we create the challenges in our lives because of weakness, or mistakes, but even then, we can learn and move forward and turn it into a good thing! 

3. Don´t worry about what you can´t change, and what you can change... change!  I have to admit that I am no less stressed out here on the mission... but on the upside, I am working hard to change what I can!  Our purpose here is to learn and grow and so sometimes we have to learn to let go and other times we have to learn to push through.  Learn to recognize the difference.

4. Serve.  I think that I may be one of the few missionaries who has been blessed with the greatest companions ever!  I don´t think that it is because my companions have all been exceptionally more miraculous than the other missionaries (although they have all been amazing) but rather because we learn to love when we serve!  We are all a part of God´s family, we are his children and so when we do good to his other children (our brothers and sisters) we naturally feel God´s love for them!  This also help us forget ourselves and be changed! Service is magic!

5. Sing... and dance when no one is looking (in the case you are on a mission).  Music sets the tone for everything!  There are only two things that we remember in this life naturally: music and smell.  This must be why I wake up some mornings hearing moms voice singing me to get up.  I have learned that to invite the spirit, to lift hearts, to express or insite happiness music is key much of the time!  If you are feeling a little down try singing at the top of your lungs... I don´t think it´s possible to stay that way for long!

6.  Put God first.  I have learned a ton of things from my mom over the years.  A TON... like I would have a list in the thousands if I had the time but of everything that I have learned the most important is that no matter what we go through in life, who is in our life, what is happening, the key is to always put God first.  He gave us life, He gave us these moments of happiness, of opportunity, of growth, of love and he is always rooting us on.  He is a loving, perfect father in heaven who gives us all that we are needing if we only seek him.  If we put God first in all we do we will be smarter, we will be prettier, we will be more blessed (in ALL things, spiritually and temporally), we will be happier, we will reach our true limitless potential.

I love you Mom! Thanks for all that you do!

Sister Westover

                                                :) woo hoo! and new hair! Thanks mom!



        Aurenir... LOVE HER!  She made me the dress that I used today for the conference with Elder Andersen!

                                             Larissa... at stake conference with Elder Andersen!

                                Sister Palacios and I today at the conference!  My hispanic daughter!

                                            I look so white next to Sister Ferreira... but love her!!

                     
Sister Hart!  My love <3 We decided we will live together after the mission woo hoo!