Tuesday, March 31, 2015


March 30th, 2015                  
Favorite quote of the week:
"It's true, isn't it? Then what else matters?"-President Hinckley
One word to describe this week?...Miracle. Pure miracle! There is so much that happens in one day let alone a week! So, I'm gunna bullet point my experiences. :)
-I had Mexican food last P-day for the first time in 2 months and I almost cried I was so happy! No joke. I was in heaven.

-I loved receiving letters from mom, dad, G., & C.,! Made my whole day. Letters are the best and so comforting. Muito Obrigada minha familia!
-We taught J. about Joseph Smith and he committed to baptism. Woohoo!! Best feeling ever when they are ready and willing
-Wednesday I had a special experience with God. Very personal experience. But basically I know He is real, answers my prayers, and relying on Him & having full faith in him is my main goal.
-Wednesday a man from our ward told us of the power that comes from praying for the hearts of the people in our area to be softened. We took the challenge. --The next day we prayed so hard, trusting in God that he would allow his children to accept our message. We tracted almost the entire morning. Nothing. Everyone slammed the door, told us they already have a church, busy, or not interested. Difficult. We got so down and were so confused. THEN, our two investigators with baptismal dates canceled their appointments we had with them for the day. Ya. Everyone rejecting us, and now our lessons fell through. SO we pulled over into a driveway and thought about what to do next. We felt prompted to go finding in the nearby mall. A young man was sitting on the bench. We go up to him and share a message. We ask him if he would be interested in reading the Book of Mormon. He immediately accepts to read the Book and to meet with us. Crazy. We were shocked. No one is that open. haha! 
Then we go to visit a referral. They weren't home. But as we are walking back to our car, we run into a man. He tells us that his daughter just died and that he's super depressed and needs God in his life. He tells us that we are angels that answered his prayers. He explained that he hadn't been outside all day, but felt like he needed to go outside for fresh air and to pray to God. WE WERE DYING. Miracle!! God literally placed him in our path. We were mind blown! We then taught C. in the library and a lady came up to us afterwards and told us that she is Baptist and wants to hear what we have to say. She told us that she is confused as to why there are so many churches. COME ON! Restoration. We found 3 people that day! ALL because of the spirit and having faith in Christ. We were brought down, but brought us right back up! Amazing. Christ is real and this work is true.
-We had interviews with Pres. G. He is amazing and answered so many of my questions.
-Women's conference. Made me super emotional. I love my family and Elder Eyring answered my prayers.
-We taught seminary this morning!! Woohoo! All of my dreams are coming true!! haha
-Funny fact: The people underneath our apartment smoke marijuana...nasty smell. And everyone has cats.... therefore, everyone's house smells like cat pee
-Yesterday, A less active woman we have been working with bore her testimony for the first time EVER. So wonderful and special to witness
-A.'s baptism is next week! YAY so excited!! The church is true.
As you can see, the life of a missionary is amazing. This is the best time to spread the word! I feel so immensely blessed to be serving my Savior. This Easter season remember the atonement and what he has done for you personally. He is the only one who knows you perfectly. He knows your struggles, he knows your weaknesses, and knows what you are capable of becoming. He can make you more than you could ever dream! I love him with all of my heart and am so grateful for the relationship I have with him. Remember him in your life and allow him to guide your course. I love you all!!
Sister Alena Jane Porter

Monday, March 23, 2015

March 23rd, 2015 
Ola todos!
Wow, so much has happened in a week!! First off, I am so blessed. I LOVE the people here with all of my heart. They are in some troubled times and it is so wonderful to me that I am here to help them at a deeper level. This work is amazing!!
This week I was very open with my sister companions about how I felt we needed to improve. We have been teaching some really powerful lessons and have found more investigators.
MIRACLES: This week we met with a less active that needed comfort from the death of her brother, her addictive daughter, and her lack of faith. My heart broke listening to her story. My words were guided as the spirit bore witness to her of Jesus Christ's power and how he can heal her wounded heart. Because of this, she is coming back to church and we are now teaching her nephew tomorrow :) miracle.
We also met another woman who has been catholic all her life and is bitter towards God for giving her cancer and a hard life. She had the worst attitude and was so mad at the world. She told us she didn't believe that Jesus Christ suffered or understood her. My heart was crushed hearing that come out of someone. I bore my testimony of my own personal witness that Jesus Christ's atonement is real and that I cannot deny that power because I have felt its impact. I was amazed at how my solemn testimony changed her whole mood completely. The spirit was so strong. Nothing can shake a sincere testimony of truth.
I see miracles every day! It is amazing how the church is so true, that when you bear a simple but real testimony, hearts are changed. People begin to understand that you are really serious because you know from experience.
Saturday was so hard. We fasted for our investigator, Mr. K, and the lesson went nowhere. He has no desire to be baptized. We had to drop him. Worst feeling ever. I cried for a good half hour. It is SOO frustrating when you can see that someone knows its true, they know the spirit, have a testimony, and know they need to be baptized but wont. AHH it KILLS ME. But I know that Heavenly Father knows that we have done all we possibly could to help him.
Zone Conference was amazing of course! It was so fun seeing other missionaries with the same purpose. My mission President is incredible and I learned so much. This really is the work of God and the Lords church. Everything testifies of him!
We have 2 baptisms coming up and its been amazing preparing them and seeing their faith and love of Jesus Christ.
Words could never fully express the gratitude I feel for my Savior. Every day when we are rejected or feel down, I remember that I'm not the first one. He knows I need to be here at this time. He understands us perfectly. He is the best companion ever! 
"Don't worry about how inexperienced you are or think you are, but think about what, with the Lord's help, you can become." -Henry B. Eyring.
I know that he is real. I see his hand in my life daily and have become so much more because he knows what I can become through him. I know that as you put your trust in him and his plan for you, everything in your life will work out. His plan is so much better! I know that this church is true and has been restored in its fullness. I love you all!!!
Sister Alena Porter


March 16th, 2015                                                    
 " No one has failed who keeps trying and keeps praying." -Elder Holland
 Hardest week of my entire life. I cannot believe I have been a missionary in Detroit for a week now! This week was crazy. I don't even know where to begin. I LOVE my Mission President and his wife. 
Michigan is beautiful!! My first day we had transfers and I got to meet my companion. BUT I got put in a trio! So I have 2 companions. Sister C. from Houston Texas and Sister R. from Spanish Fork Utah. 
 They have both been out for a year-year and a half. I am gunna be honest. It has been rough. I have been through a lot of tears this week. Any person that has ever served a mission would know how I felt this first week. Alone, stressed, nervous, and you feel like you don't know what your doing. The first couple days were tough. But, I have learned so much in just a short amount of time. I am a changed person. I feel that once someone experiences being a missionary in Detroit, they are never the same. Sister R. has been such a blessing to me. I have learned so much from her. I feel that I am here for a reason. I have seen that even though I am new, I am contributing a ton to how the work is progressing. The people here are amazing. We cover 6 cities. Trenton, Riverview, Southgate, Taylor, Romulus, and Wyandotte. They don't put sisters in downtown Detroit because we probably wouldn't be alive. They only sent tough elders there. Our area has the cutest homes! The people are either in super nice houses, or are in a hoarding buried alive status houses. Most people are missing at least one tooth or more and have such funny accents. I love them!!
I have seen such funny things this week. We go tracting and contacting a lot (tons of rejection) and the lessons are so amazing. It is so nice that I can understand them and speak to them in English :)
I have truly seen Heavenly Father strengthen me and teach me so much this week. I have really learned to rely on him for everything. I have felt my Savior lifting me up in discouraging times. It is such a comfort to me to know that he is there always. I don't know everything and I am not perfect, but I know that if I am trying then he will help me do the rest. I love this work! Yesterday, we were teaching our investigator, A., and I challenged her to baptism! She said yes! It was such an exciting moment knowing that she will be making such a sacred covenant with God. She will be baptized on April 11, and I can't wait. I am so excited to be here for my companion's first baptism and we will definitely be having more so long as I'm here :)
I KNOW that this gospel is true. I testify that our Savior is real and lives. He is my strength, my guide, and my everything. I will forever be his servant. I love all of you and know that you are in my prayers! "Have a blessed day" :)

Sister Alena Porter

March 9th, 2015
Ola Todas! I made it to Detroit safely today. And I LOVE it here!!! It is so beautiful, the houses are adorable, it is freezing, the mission home is so cute, and my Mission President and his wife are the kindest people on the planet. I absolutely love it here so far. It has been a long day. Only 1 1/2 hour sleep last night and so much to learn in one day! We get our companions tomorrow and I'm so excited to get to work in this city. It is similar to San Francisco, but really dangerous. We will have to be careful and follow the spirit. We sisters get to drive our whole mission and the elders get bikes :) haha I am feeling dumb because I keep wanting to say things in Portuguese and its hard for me to transition into a mission I had no plan of going to. But I love this and am so excited! I shared the gospel/my testimony with the man next to me on the plane. It was awesome. Especially cause he couldn't leave :) haha This is such an exciting time in my life. I feel so blessed and know that I am here for someone. I love you all!!! Tchao!!!
Sister Alena Porter

Monday, March 9, 2015

Email Received from the 
Detroit, Michigan Mission Home ~ 

Dear family,

We just wanted to let you know that your missionary has arrived safely in Detroit. What a great group!! They are excited to start this wonderful experience. Thank you for sending them our way, and for helping them prepare for serving at this great time in the history of the church. We are grateful that we have this wonderful opportunity to serve alongside each of them:)
We would encourage you to share your missionary experiences with them as each of us do our part in Hastening the Work of Salvation!!

With much love,
Sister Gerber

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

                               SUPER HERO POWERS

Oi Todos!
This is the last week I have in the Provo MTC! I will be getting my re-assignment tomorrow after dinner & I'm so excited to be serving in the US for a period of time before serving in Brazil. I can't wait to actually understand & teach people without having to translate.  This week was amazing & sooo busy! Tuesday we had a devotional that really put my mission into perspective. Bishop G. Causse talked about how missionaries are super heroes with powers & everything. He told us that when we are weak, we are strong. I realized that I need to be more confident in God; that he will help me through all of my trials these next 17 months. When we are on the Lords errand, we are entitled to his help. That is such a comfort. All I have to do is allow the spirit to guide my steps & he will do the rest. What a blessing that is! It really hit me hard that I am going to be someone's missionary that brings their family the gospel. My heart is full. I remember meeting Cecil Samuelson (the man who brought my family into the church) & how I will treasure that emotional moment forever. I can't wait to bring this joy to people! This week we taught some amazing lessons to our investigators. They didn't go as we planned, but the spirit guided us to address their concerns & answer their heart felt questions. I was shocked at how easily words are coming. It is one of the most amazing feelings having the spirit take over your words completely.  Sister E. is in my district & has had some heart problems, so I went to the hospital with her on Thursday. It was SO weird being out in the world. People actually have normal lives!! haha It was amazing representing Christ & seeing that people recognize you because of him. I am living a dream. I wouldn't change my circumstance as a missionary for anything. I love learning & improving myself every day. I am so blessed to witness the blessings of the gift of tongues, the power of missionary service, and having more of the spirit more of the time! On Friday, we skyped a Brazilian woman! It was so crazy, Sister C. & I had no clue what she was saying. She had a very thick accent from Recife. It was really frustrating, but a wonderful learning experience. On Saturday, we taught our Buddhist investigator who doesn't have a testimony of Christ. We asked him so many deep questions and tried to explain who the Savior is, but nothing was working. My heart was pounding as the spirit told me to take a picture out of Jesus Christ. I held this picture up and began to cry as I testified & explained who the Savior is to me & how he has changed my life. The spirit was so strong. Jesus Christ is my strength, my best friend, my savior, and my guide. I am here because I love him. I feel his love constantly here in the MTC and love that he uses me to bless his children. I can't believe how much I have grown and changed in just 5 weeks! I am so grateful for my testimony and knowledge of the gospel. The experiences I have had and all of the times I have witnessed my Heavenly Fathers hand in my life has strengthened me and made me more than I could ever be. There is no greater joy than being a missionary! I KNOW these things are true!! Eu amo voces muito!
Sister Alena Porter

PS. I just love hearing about everything at home cause I never can talk to ya! 
-We had a devotional about how missions impact families forever. I thought of how yours and dads missions have blessed SO MANY! I am so grateful for your example and love of missionary work
-I'm so glad H. sent a coat cuz I might be going somewhere freezing in the US. And the Brazilian elders keep telling me that it is FREEZING in my mission. So tinkoo mommy!!!
-An elder got his visa in my district! But he went through a different consulate. But guess what? If we are out in the field in the US for a certain amount of time, they send us to the Brazil MTC for 2 weeks before our mission!!!
-We get our re-assignments tomorrow after dinner, and I will be emailing you where I'm serving! Yay for another mission call!!! :) It will be around 6:30 or 45
- I also will be calling you on either Tuesday or Wednesday of next week before I leave, but I will let you know
-Sorry no pictures this week. We got one in the snow, but that's about it because we have been working our tails off.
I am so not happy to be leaving here. My teachers are amazing. But so exciting to be starting another adventure somewhere else! The MTC is wonderful. I literally have the most amazing teachers. My teacher Irmao S. reminds me of J. He is so sweet & such a powerful man. The devotionals are amazing and I learn so much from them. Sister C. and I attend choir every week and I love seeing my cute Hermana S. everywhere. She is such a strength. I am so excited to be re-assigned! I get two mission calls, two missions, and possibly two MTC experiences!! So crazy. I feel so blessed right now.