"O Lord, I have trusted in thee, and I will trust in thee forever. I will not put my trust in the arm of flesh ... Yea, I know that God will give liberally to him that asketh, ... therefore I will lift up my voice to thee ... my rock and mine everlasting God. Amen." (2 Nephi 4: 34-35)

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Hey Everyone!!!

Yet another awesome week at the MTC. This week we were able to celebrate Valentine's Day, although the MTC didn't celebrate it my district did! And it was awesome. We all wore pink, red and purple and put pink dots on our name tags. I’m not sure why but it was just a super awesome day, everyone was really happy and I taught some good lessons with my companion. As I have been in the MTC my teaching ability has grown so much. I have realized that the most important element to your lesson is getting to know and love your investigators. That is something that my companion and I have tried to improve on. Another thing that is a huge testimony of the truthfulness of this Gospel is how they are teaching us to teach. We honestly don't receive a ton of instruction as to how we are to teach. We are given guidelines and then told to simply teach by the spirit. Every teaching skill we learn is coupled by telling us to do it but the spirit. God knows all of his children and knows what they need to hear. So if in our lessons we listen to the spirit, God will tell us, by the power of the Holy Ghost, what to say. I have experienced this as I have had the opportunity to role play teaching situations. Even though it isn't "real" the spirit tells me what to say and what scriptures to share. It’s an incredible feeling when you walk out of a lesson and know that you weren't the one teaching but the spirit was. I pray every day that I may be able to have the spirit with me because without it I would not be able to do anything.

Another cool experience I was able to have with my district was the chance to fast for an Elder in our district. He is having some medical issues, the details of which you guys probably don't want to know... Anyway Elder Hoese suggested that we have a fast on his behalf and it was awesome. As I was fasting for him I felt an increase of love for him and I know that Elder Sanford (the elder we fasted for) could feel our love for him. He said that nowhere else in the world would he be able to receive the love and support that he got from us. I felt so special to be able to be a part of that. This week I have read and studied more about charity. In Moroni chapter 7 it says that if we don't have charity we are nothing, NOTHING. If we are incapable of loving others as Christ does we are nothing. That hit me very hard and motivated me to have more charity. Something else that hit me about charity was an answer to a question that my teacher gave me. I asked him if he had advice for me on how to be a better missionary and he just told me love. If I want to learn the language better I need to love the people more and it will come. If I want to work harder I need to love the Lord more. If I get home sick I need to love the culture more so I enjoy where I am at. If I just learn to love as Christ did I will be able to do his will and earn his trust. We all need to be filled with more love towards one another. I challenge everyone who reads this to get down on their knees every night and pray to be filled with love. I promise as you do you will have a greater joy and happiness in your life. It won't be easy sometimes to love others but it will always be worth it.

I love you all. Read Moroni Chapter 7 it talks about faith and charity and hope!


Elder Rice

Thursday, February 12, 2015

Hey Everyone!!!

Life in the MTC is good! We have had some really cool experiences. Oh and I was called as a district leader this past week. Yesterday everyone in our district did an English fast, so we only spoke Portuguese all day. It was difficult but I feel like I learned a lot. You learn so fast in the MTC. I know it is because the spirit is with us. The Holy Ghost is the best teacher.

Our zone also got three new districts this past week so it was fun to meet all the new missionaries coming in. And my district was able to host new incoming missionaries as well. It was super fun. We got to welcome them to the MTC and tell them how great it is going to be. Luckily all of the people I hosted didn't have families that cried a bunch at the curb. In fact one of them said good bye in about 30 seconds, I think it might have been a new MTC record!

I have also been reading the Book of Mormon a ton. The first day that we got here they challenged us to read the whole book by the end of our 6 weeks here. I am 30 pages away from finishing it and as I have read it my testimony as been strengthened so much. The Book of Mormon is a true book I can feel it every time I read from its pages.

Something that I want to share this week was a passage that I read in 3 Nephi when Christ was ministering to the Nephites. In Chapter 19 verses 19-23 Christ says a prayer on behalf of the Nephites. In his prayer he asks the Father to bless them with the Holy Ghost so that they can feel its influence. Out of all the things he could have prayed for he prayed for the Holy Ghost. I think that says a lot about how important it is that we have the Holy Ghost with us at all times. In a devotional we had Sunday night our speaker said that the Holy Ghost was a largely untapped resources by the members of the Church let alone the World. God's work can only progress if we have the spirit with us. So let us strive to be worthy of the Holy Ghost and pray for its influence. I love you all!!


Elder Rice

Sunday, February 8, 2015

Hey Everyone!

Yet another awesome week at the MTC!! The MTC is such an amazing place because of its spirituality and the awesome people inside of it. I have some amazing brothers and sisters in my district and I feel blessed to be able to serve beside them for this short period of time.

My companion, Elder Nelson, and I are becoming closer than ever. We try to get to know each other a little bit better every day. At times we both get on each other’s nerves but we feel blessed to be able to have each other as companions. We both want to work hard and try to express love to all of our investigators.

One thing that I really want to share with everyone at home is an impression that I had this week. More than ever as I feel the spirit more strongly I have an intense desire to change for the better so that I can serve others. While watching a video in class I felt such a strong desire to be a diligent servant of God. I have felt this before, it is a yearning or a hunger deep inside of me to come closer to God and be better for him and his children. The only problem though is that this feeling fades and with it my desire to be diligent in my service to God. After class I talked with my teacher about how I can keep this desire burning inside me so that I will always be motivated to do right by God and serve others. He told me about a phrase they say in Brazil which is to feed your feelings. To feed your feelings is to make them grow. If you feed feelings of hate or anger you will hold grudges for years and be bitter over small disputes. While on the other hand if we feed righteous desires and feelings of love we will feel and increased desire to serve and love others. That is the key to act on the feeling you have immediately after feeling them and then continue to feed them for a life time.

As I was doing some personal study I read over Ether chapter 12. There are many great scriptures in this chapter but the one that really impressed me was verse 27, which says that God gives us weakness so that we can be made strong in him. I believe that this is the biggest way that we can feed our righteous desire. To recognize before God all the weaknesses we have then ask him to help us improve. It is not always easy to see our fault but I know that God can strengthen us to do all things. I have made a list of my weaknesses and every week I try to work on one of them praying to God that he will help me. I pray that all of you will feed your righteous desires and come closer to God. I love you all!!! Soooo much!


Elder Rice


The MTC is awesome!! I just gets better every day! some pretty cool things happened this week. First off we got a new teacher her name is Sister Dangerfield, It a legit name I know. She is the best!! She is so happy all the time it’s ridiculous! She always has a smile on her face and you can’t help but be happy while you are around her. We still have Brother Machado as a teacher too. They switch off between teaching morning and evenings. I think they are the two best teachers in the MTC.

 I don't know why our district is so blessed but I’m glad that we are. Some other pretty cool things happened this week as well. Our district was chosen to go and test out some new classrooms that they will be using at the MTC in a couple of years. Again I'm not sure why our district gets all the best stuff but we do and it’s awesome. The classroom was super nice it had big desks and nice chairs and was about 3x as big as our last classroom. I really wished we could have just gone there every day to learn.

As class was going on there was some guy watching us on the other side of a one-way mirror. Even though we couldn’t see him it was kinda weird to know that we were being watched...

Another super cool thing that happened was our district was filmed by some Italian film crew to be part of a church training video, I think. That was also kinda weird. They told us to just act natural and not look at the camera even though they had about two feet away from our face at times. So hopefully I'll be a Mormon celebrity by the time i get off my mission!

Other than that I had about a million spiritual experiences which is super awesome. It is such a good feeling to have the Holy Ghost testify to you every day. I think my favorite part of the MTC right now is the opportunity to teach fake investigators. Even though it is all practice I can feel the spirit so strongly as my companion and I teach.

In Moroni 10:5 it says " and by the power of the holy ghost ye may know the truth of all things" I know we have all heard this scripture several times but it is so true! having the Holy Ghost as a constant companion is an amazing blessings and allows me to have insights that I would never be able to perceive on my own. If you ever have doubts about the truthfulness of the Gospel just pray to God and search the scriptures diligently. And if you don’t get an answer do it again, and again, and again. God will always be true to his promises and he has promised that if we seek the truth diligently he will give it to us. I know the Holy Ghost testifies the truth of all things and i pray that we can all strive to have him as a constant companion.

I love you all! Read the Book of Mormon every day!!


Elder Rice


The first week at the MTC has been so great! There is no down time here. It’s always work, work, work - which is so awesome. The first day I got here so much happened, the same with the second day. It was a little overwhelming but I have settled in to the schedule and I'm learning so much. My district is great. It’s kinda crazy. My companions name is Elder Nelson.. He is hard working and super obedient. He keeps me line and makes sure that I’m working hard! We made a goal as a companionship to strive to be 100% obedient to everything we are told. So far I think we've done pretty well but its only day 7 so hopefully we can keep it up.

So every day at the MTC we manage to study for about 10 hours. 6-7 of those hours are spent with a teacher. Our teacher is Brother Machado, He is such a great guy and an amazing teacher. What I love most about being in the MTC is that everybody loves everyone else. We are all trying to become better people so that we can go and serve the people of Brazil. I feel Brother Machado's love for me and all the people in my district. The language study is coming along but is difficult. The second day that we were here we had to teach a lesson to an "investigator" in Portuguese. The task seemed a little daunting but it was an awesome experience. Having absolutely no knowledge forced me to rely on the spirit and I could feel it strongly. We teach our "investigator", Viviane, almost every day. We will be giving her our 4th lesson tomorrow and our teacher challenged us to do it without any notes. All my companion and I will have is 6 days of Portuguese, the book of Mormon, the Bible, and the spirit. It’s gonna be AWESOME! 2 of the 10 hours we spend studying every day is spent in personal and companion study. I have already grown to love reading and studying the Book of Mormon and Preach My Gospel so much. There is so much knowledge within those pages. I love them so much. oh we also have to memorize a bunch of things in Portuguese. At the end of the day my brain feel fried from reading and studying so much. But we also have a lot of fun! The people in my district are so hilarious. They keep things interesting!

I love all of you and I just want to share my favorite scripture with you guys. If you read in 2 Nephi 4:20 to the end Nephi talks about trusting in God and about how having Christ as the rock of our salvation gives him the hope to know he can do all things. The more I study and read in the scriptures the more powerful and confident I feel in my faith. I have no doubt that I can do anything as long as it is in line with the will of God. Faith should always lead us to action and that action will build even stronger faith. If you think you may lack faith in Jesus don't doubt yourself instead read more diligently through the book of Mormon and pray to god for an increase in faith. I think the greatest way for us to strengthen our faith is through using Christ atonement. it gives us the ability to be forgiven but also the ability to be enabled through his grace. I love this Gospel and I know that it is true. If you wish to develop stronger faith, read the blessing promised in the scriptures to those that are faithful and then test it. If you do as God commands then he is bound by his word to bless you. I love you all!


Elder Rice