Mailing Address

Elder Marc Austin Skiles
8013 NE 115th Way
Kirkland, WA 98034

Monday, June 25, 2012

eMail of June 25, 2012

Hello Everyone! The work here is going great! We had another baptism this week of a boy named Victor. We also found a new investigator. A man who showed up at church yesterday. His only doubt is that he wants to know everything before being baptized. The couple won´t be baptized for a while I think. The unfortunate thing is that their dad drinks a lot and smokes and spends all their money. She doesn´t really think it's worth it to marry him because of this, but she can´t exactly separate with him because he's the only source of money and food for her and her 6 children. Really complicated, but she and her kids are loving the church and progressing a lot. Expedito, one of her sons, wants soooooo bad to be baptized. It's really cute. He´s only 6 years old though. It got cold here again which I think is great unlike all the Brazillians. Our shower head broke though so taking a cold shower is rather difficult :). My companion and I are getting along great. We are enjoying seeing all the parrots. We see them all the time. There are some yellow and blue ones, and some red and blue ones. I never realized how huge parrots are. They are amazing to see in the wild. It's amazing how on the mission you learn so much about how the church as a whole functions. How every single calling you could have in the church has the same basic purpose: Strengthening the saints, reactivating the less actives, and helping people to be baptised. Everything we do in the church has this purpose. It's amazing! Anyway. I hope you are having a great summer. I love you all. See yah in a couple years! Elder Marc Skiles

Monday, June 18, 2012

eMail of June 18, 2012

Hello Family, I´m glad to hear things are going well. This was a good week as well. We baptised the brothers and sisters of a member. We were able to get a bus to bring all the people from this neighborhood to the church. The bus had almost 20 people. Next week I think we will be able to get more. There are A LOT of less active members in this neighborhood in which we are working. Our district went and ate pizza to celebrate my birthday and Elder Lino´s. His was on the 8th. That was fun. It's amazing how on a mission you get to learn sooo much about how the church works. You learn about what has to happen for certain programs to function right and what kinds of things can get in the way and the points of view of all the members in whats going on. It's amazing how much difference one person can make for the negative or the positive in the church. In the end, the purpose of everything we do in the church is to Baptize, Confirm, and Retain the most amount of people possible. This depends on everyones willingness to grow in faith and repent. During part of personal study, I´m trying to finish reading the New Testament. I´m in Ephesians right now. It's really amazing to read about the ministry of Jesus Christ and the Apostles. It's also interesting to see why there are so many doctrinal confusions amongst the Christian faiths. There are a lot of things that the Bible just doesn´t explain clearly. It's a good thing we have the Book of Mormon. I never realized there are so many Christian faiths. Brazil has a different sect on almost every street. This cultural aspect makes proselyting interesting here. The predominating idea is that "the church sign doesn´t save anyone. Its faith that really matters." This is a half truth that the adversary likes to use here. It's true that the church sign does not save anyone. Faith is what really matters. But its Faith in correct gospel principles and saving ordinances performed by people that hold the priesthood of god that only exist in The Church of Jesus Christ. That is the main truth that we have to teach. In the end everyone has to gain a real testimony of the Book of Mormon. Anyway. I love you all. The Gospel is true. See yah in a couple years. Elder Marc Skiles

Monday, June 11, 2012

eMail of June 11, 2012

Hello Family, I glad to hear things are going well for you all. It sounds like you guys want me to talk a little more about what I´m doing here. So, Rondonópolis is a safer city than Cuiabá. Our area is just as big even though the city is smaller. It just has more types of areas. It has the center with the shops, richer parts, poorer parts, and farm lands. All a lot closer together. My companion is Elder Lira. He's great. He´s from Natal. He´s the most strict about the rules out of all the companions I´ve had yet. That's a big relief because the contrary is difficult sometimes. We found this huge family the first few days. A next door neighbor whose children had already been baptised called the branch president saying that there was a family in need of a visit from the missionaries. We went there and were extremely well recieved. They had already been to church a long time ago and all wanted to be baptised. The mom and dad can not be baptised yet because they are not married legally, but we had the opportunity to baptise all their children over 8 years old. (4 out of the 6 children they have). We also baptised the friend of a member who had been recieving the lessons before I got here. We had 5 baptisms this week. It was great. Now we just need to get a marriage date for the parents. It was really cold this week. I even had to wear my jacket when we went out. My companion is from the Northeast of Brazil which is always hot. He said the only thing he had ever experienced before the mission like the cold this last week is the inside of a freezer. He had never experienced cold before. Anyway I love you all. Keep being good. See yah in a couple years. Elder Marc Skiles

Monday, June 4, 2012

eMail of June 4, 2012

Hey family, Thanks for all the Happy Birthdays! I can´t believe I´m turning 20. That can´t really be possible. Turning 19 was alright because I was still a teanager, but 20 is like... really old. Everyone here who guesses my age says I´m 16 or 17 though. The transfer is today. I´m going to Rondonópolis. Elder Lira will be my companion. I don´t know him at all. I´m pretty excited. That's great that things are busy over there. Busy is good. Relaxed is good too though. I can´t imagine Caleb driving. In all the pictures dad sent me he looks HUGE. He looks like he´s catching up on dad. I think he´ll be taller than me. Don´t worry that you hit the garage door caleb. I got in a couple accidents too. Your lucky you get to drive. A Brizillian Missionary with a drivers liscense is really rare. They can´t get a license until 18 and cars are REALLY expensive here. Too bad about the stage and the audience in the play. I´m sure Nathaniel did fantastically though. Its amazing how quickly things are going by. It seems like as I get older and older, time goes faster and faster. I love you all. Thanks for all the emails. See yah in a couple years! Elder Marc Skiles