Monday, December 30, 2013

Parade Queen

This week was just special. With all the holiday craziness and what not our work was pretty sad. I got sick the day after Christmas and Sister M. Silva was sick the day after that, then it was my birthday and my lying companion said she was sick again that morning so Sister Francis and I did splits because we had a ton of people to teach. Really Sister M. Silva just wanted to make a cake... we also had a surprise birthday party. We played ninja:) you will be proud to know i’m still the ninja master. Thats about it for this week I hope the holidays were safe and fun for everyone. Thanks for the prayers:) Oh for everyone who didn't talk to me on christmas,we moved houses finally... we did it with a horse and buggy.... probably the best thing to use when moving houses. I got the ride the cart, I felt like I was in the Macys parade:)

love you all 

Sister Leonard

Monday, December 23, 2013

Happy Christmas

Dec 23, 2013

Happy Christmas

woohoo its christmas... but doesn't feel like Christmas because its as hot as… Brazil:) But we had an awesome Christmas conference in Natal this past week. The focus was on the atonement of Jesus Christ, and it was awesome! Also we all got fruit cakes... it’s a desired present here (still gross) but it´s all good. Another miracle that happened this week, it rained. Like not just 5 drops and it was kinda cooler. It was awesome! And you know when there is water there are baptisms. Really this week was a miracle Antonio José was prepared by angels. It was one of those people that contacted us in the street and didn't have any problem with the commandments/word of wisdom, and after he was baptized he was so happy and just kept saying how great he felt. Just the little things make me so happy, and remind me why it is that I wanted to serve a mission. All in all I’m happy and enjoying the mission. We should move into our new house Christmas day.  Keep praying:) 
hope all is well with the fam bam.:)
 talk to yáll christmas day:)

love Sister Leonard


Dec 23, 2013


Hey we got a house thats all secure and such. We´ll move in at the end of this week. We´re headed to Natal today for our Fiesta de Natal... i mean Conferencia de Natal. This week was crazy as ever but really great. Yhe highlighted experience that I hope makes Dad proud is how we filled up the baptismal font this week. We had Stake Conference this week so that kinda threw things off because of transport and what not. And apparently the water goes out in some places ever other day. So we got to our `chapel´ late and realized we didn't have any water...oops. Anyway there was water in the sinks just not for the font. So we grabbed all the 5 gallon jugs we could and started filling those up. I have pictures on Sister Francis’ camera that I´ll send next week. Just trust me it was really cool:)

Until next week:)

Sister Leonard

Monday, December 9, 2013

Já é Natal?

December 9, 2013

Já é Natal?

So this week was literally the craziest week of my life. Still living in a house of a member. She is fofo demais. ya I don’t think there was one normal day this past week, one thing after another...but we did see a miracle literally. We have a lady here who is an eternal investigator... or was :) She's been investigating the church for two years. I’m pretty sure she knows more about the doctrine than I do. Anyway until friday night we didn't know if she would actually get baptized. Like every time we brought it up she was like `no no maybe in like another year´... anyway we marked an interview with our DL and I’m pretty sure he used his Elder magic. After the interview she was like do we have to wait till Sunday? I’d rather just do it tomorrow... claro. So ya after a week of bad news we had the joy of watching another daughter of God chose to follow Jesus Christ. Que Benção! I hope all is well in your world:) 

love you all

Sister Leonard

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Scary stuff in Brazil

December 4, 2013

So i´ll start this letter out with shout out to the cousins. Mainly Mar. thanks for the letter Mar:) 
This letter i think should be for Kendall Rapier but i don’t have his email and i´ll discuss the same things so if Becky reads this let Kendall know its for him.
The one piece of advice... if you could call it advice from my dear cousin was`the world is really wicked´ I thought to my self `umm thanks for that´ but this week has been hard... really hard. Disclaimer I’m fine no worries. 
I'll start with happy things. We went to Natal last week for a conference for the sisters in the mission. We have 35 sisters (38 now i think with this transfer) it was awesome President Soares is an inspired man! After that we had a baptism this sunday. Bia is the cutest thing since puppies. Then things kinda go down hill... one of our investigators has been in a relationship that isn't healthy. This week things came to a breaking point. She was inspired to say in the middle of being beaten that the sisters were knocking at the door. He let her check the door and she literally ran for her life. The Lord inspired her to use us as a tool to save her life. She's better now at her brothers house, but i feel really bad for her.

The next day we made our rounds looking for people to teach, after a few lessons the member that was with us needed to return home, so we decided to stop by in our house to grab another book of mormon and eat something. so we have a lock on the door for at night that can only be locked from the inside. when its locked you cant even turn the key to get it... that was the first clue. I pushed on the door to jolt it and managed to unlock the door. but it was locked with the latched lock. then I noticed the front window open. Anyway we called the other sisters to see if they had passed by earlier and left the window open. ya, no so we went to Bishops, he called for other men in the ward to come over. (the police are kinda a huge joke here) anyway they brought flash lights and saw the back door open (sister m silva and i both double checked that it was locked when we left) no one was inside. a neighbor actually saw the guy jump over our fence with a small back of things and then he left... so  he left all the money all our cards and documents, he took my camera/memory card :( and our dvd player for training, with The District still inside.... so we´re hoping he decides to watch the district and will come back asking to be baptized... also he left the charger for my camera so jokes on him it´ll die in a day or two. so we are looking for a new place to live, in the mean time we´re living with bishop´s mom, she's the sweetest old lady, she reminds me of Honey... don’t worry mom we do all the dishes and sweep and clean up after ourselves. So ya the world is wicked, I feel like I understand that phrase a little more now. I can only try to imagine a small part of how the Lord feels when people do bad things to others. But we´re still smiling... we´ll at least i am, my sick sense of humor is at it´s all time best;)  so ya that´s my update of the week. oh I didn't get transferred so 6 more weeks in Abolição! woohoo! Loving the work and the people.  Oh ya i got my christmas present mom thanks! Im really impressed you remembered! Anyway we´re having fun as always. The lord is protecting us, thanks for all the prayers and love.

love sister Leonard:)

Monday, November 25, 2013

Record breaking attendance!

November 25, 2013

This week was good. we set a goal to have a record breaking attendance at church. mainly because the members here have been waiting four years for their chapel and it was in jeopardy. like usually we have 100 people at church, which is really just a big house remodeled into a church. anyway if we didn't bring up our numbers the members would have to wait another four years. anyway lots and lots of prayers, lots of walking, lots of talking and testifying. we had 186 people at church yesterday. 18 investigators! and it was packed! foi ótimo! umm we sometimes have days where everything falls through and we end up walking a lot and not teaching a lot. e aì, this happened one day so we sat on the curb and we prayed. this isn´t the first time we´ve done this and it sure wont be the last. but we prayed hard, and decided to start our day from the beginning, revisit all the people that weren't home. we had an awesome day after that prayer we taught a lot of people the first vision and the Spirit was just awesome como sempre. 
I've been reading more and more conference talks lately... still don’t have october but eventually I will. And just figuring out how God works and what he wants us to do. Anyway here are a few things I’ve learned. He really does have our best interest in mind. He wants us to be happy in this life and the life to come. He has given us a map and a guide to show us how to do that. He sent his son to show us how to return to his presence and he has given us commandments for our safety and when we obey with exactness we are blessed. But we are never blessed in the way we want and its never according to our timing. When we really stop to count all the little blessings in our lives, we have so much to be grateful for.
Until next time :) 
Lots of love and lots of prayers de me:)

love sister Leonard

Saturday, November 16, 2013

There are two of her

So she's been gone for 3 months, and I finally managed to get flat Sister Leonard put where she belongs.  I've missed seeing her face.  Now I will place her right next to the back door and scare myself each time I walk in.
Sister Leonard is in the corner!

Sometimes I worry about me... When Flat David lived in that spot, I went out one day to carry in some case goods.  It was very bright and sunny.  I put on my sunglasses and grabbed a case of soup and brought it in the house, where it was dark.  As I got in, I saw a person in my house, I screamed and dropped all my soup on my feet.  Realizing it was Flat David, I laughed at myself and went out to get the other case of soup, and did the exact same thing a second time.  Yeah, having Aleah in the house is going to be fun!

Monday, November 11, 2013


This week was awesome. A few things that Sister M. Silva and i did this week were: 
Interrupt a soccer game to preach the gospel, we make lots of contacts everyday and i have to shame talking to random people... probably because i really don't know what I’m saying and we´ll i saw a lot of people who needed to hear about the Gospel so i called a time out and invited everyone to church... no one came to church... probably because i interrupted their soccer game but still it was really cool:)
i related the gospel to a brownie, I’m sure you´re wondering how that can be... we´ll in my mom´s special top secret brownie recipe it has 5 ingredients... surprising how something so amazing can be so simple but it is... just like the Gospel:) also we have 5 very simple steps to achieve happiness in this life and joy in the life to come. We need faith, when we have faith and we know God exists and loves us it makes us want to repent so we can be like him, only way we can truly be forgiven of all our sins is to be baptized, and after that live worthy of the gift God gives us which is the holy ghost, after that is endure to the end, do all the little things, pray daily, read your scriptures, go to church and be made clean again. easy:)
 we invited bandits to our Halloween party, our Halloween party was awesome!:) We had lots of fun and no one was hurt the whole ward dressed up... I’ll send pictures:)
 We had an activity in a `park´ really a dirt field, and got over 30 references for the other sisters (their area) but we are going to do the same activity in our area also at the end of the month:) we have lots of people to teach:) thanks for the love and prayers. hopefully this week we´ll get beds! if not tudo bem:)

All and all a great week.
love sister Leonard

Awesome Halloween Cake

Me and one of my buds

Twin costumes!  (We are Minnie Mouse!)

Beautiful Friends

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Letter from Brazil

7 Nov 2013

Dear Mom & Dad

I’m still alive :-)  Thanks for all the prayed & love & support. Thanks for always pushing for family home evening and daily/nightly scripture study and family prayer.  I didn’t really see it’s importance but being here where the church is still pretty young and many families don’t do these things I see how much of a difference these things make.  For example we have a Grandma who lives on our street, she’s actually the Bishops mom and she takes care of two of her 9 year old twin grand daughters. Her mental health has been declining.  You can only imagine the situation.  Their mom didn’t want them so she dumped them with grandma-don’t know where dad is, and grandmas house is supposed to be fun - old people aren’t fun for really long periods of time ‘ that’s why eventually they die.  Especially for little-kids, we stop by often to help clean the house, wash the dishes, read the scriptures (they have an awesome picture book of mormon) and we’ve started doing weekly family nights.  Basically family night forces you to enjoy each others company, its great and it makes you work out your problems (crazy enough, everyone has problems with the bathroom, not just our family!)  WE’ve noticed a ute change in the atmosphere there is great!

Another family we are teaching is another example of this.  Francimar & Elivania.  She is less-active, he’s not a member yet.  She is still married to another man so they are waiting for her divorce so they can get married so he can be baptized.  Anyway we've taught them for longer than I’ve been here… which means they’ve received every lesson, full of detail, many many times, so we still visit them but we don’t teach the lessons just read with them and answers questions.  They have an 11 year old who asks the strangest questions like “can I name my son Jesus”  This last week we went over there and they were all gathered together, this cute little family and they were singing hymns, and they have a little calendar of what scriptures to read every sand and it was just so cute to see their little family growing in the gospel and he’s not even baptized yet.

All is well with me:-)  I learn new things everyday also I’m teaching my companion English.  Important things like “badonk-a-donk” and “Elder Thomas (our district leader) today a little boy bit me”, and she teaches me portuguese.  We laugh a lot and we do crazy things like interrupt soccer games to preach the gospel.  I won’t tell you all the dangerous things we do, suffice otto say that angels truly walk with us and we see the Lord’s hand protect and guide us every day.  

Your prayers are working.  Mom, remember how when I’d practice portuguese, I basically just said everything with an Italian accent?  So everyone thinks I’m italian.  It’s cool :-)  If you haven’t sent me a christmas present, I probably won’t get it till January.

You all write me


Sister Aleah Leonard

Monday, November 4, 2013

tudo bem tudo bem

tudo bem tudo bem

November 4, 2013

This week was fun, as it always is in the mission field. Lots and lots and lots of walking, it was hot, but I think its better than being cold:) still don't have a bed but at least I don't have to sleep on the ground:) we found lots of new people to teach this week.wahoo work! I'm officially hilarious in two languages now:) my companion tells me everyday how funny i am. Sister M. Silva is pretty funny too, everyday we practice a new phrase to say in English for Elder Tomas, our district leader. on Thursday it was "Elder today a little boy bit me!" and Friday it was "Elder, today the same little boy bit my companion" both are true statements. umm Sister Francis and i celebrated 3 months of the mission on the 31st, we also decorated for Halloween, this week we'll have our Ala-ween party (ala means ward. Its funny I have to know Portuguese) so ya all is well in Mossoró. hope all is well in your part of the world:)

Love sister Leonard

We found a great spot for a group photo

We found a horse

Siser m.S

Monday, October 28, 2013

Not too much to Report

Not too much to report

October 28, 2013

Basically we gave all of my investigators to the new companionship, and we don't have anyone to teach yet but this week will be more productive. my Portuguese has improved a lot now that i am with a Brazilian now sister m. silva. she´s great, for the most part i can understand most everything she´s saying. the other dupla here is Sister Adriane and Sister Francis, they´re great, it´s always a party after planning, they try to speak English and we try to speak Portuguese, the gift of tongues is real. it´s starting to really feel like summer here (that´s a joke because its always really hot here, all year around.) umm ya i walk a lot still, i love work, the members here are great and help enormously with the work. i´ve really felt your prayers working. but ive learned specific prayers are the if you could pray that I get a bed soon that´d be cool. Although I enjoy my rede (pronounced headgy) (hammock) it´d be nice to sleep in a bed:) love you all

Sister Leonard

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

I got hit in the face with a Bat!

This week has honestly been ridiculous. 
So the animals here are crazy. We were on splits last Thursday and I was ducking under a tree to get to this house and a bat ran into my face, I can mark that off the bucket list.
Barataphobia: so you know the movie arachnophobia when all the spiders try to get in the we have a lot of cockroaches here, que benção, so we bought this poison from a member in another ward...i swear it was strait drugs, the roaches started freaking out after eating it, and they all started climing in our windows and running across our porch, i have no idea why they wanted to get in the house so bad, but as soon as they´d get in they´d curl up and twitch ferociously.
What´s been happening:
sister Johnson and i have been planning a Halloween party for the past month, it will be this saturday.we get two new sisters in our ward today, which means there will be 2 duplas in Abolição. so we’ve been rearranging the house as well. and we are splitting the area for the new sisters...any way I'm saying all this because we have been planning all these things and making preparations and last night we got the call that sister Johnson would be transferred. may i remind you that i have only been here 6 weeks and i now have to show 3 new sisters the area and i have a Halloween party to do and a new area to open with a brand new Brazilian companion. on the bright side sister francis(MTC comp) is going to be living with me, so at least someone will speak English, que benção. so ya if you have a moment in your prayers don't forget the sister in Brazil trying to survive. Love you all, I’m relying on the Lord.

Love sister Leonard

How many sisters live in this house?  And this isn't all the shoes either...

Monday, October 14, 2013


So we met a guy on the street this week, which really means we were walking down the street and he calls for us to come to him. His name is Lucas, we talked for a little and marked to visit him the next day. We taught him the Gospel of Jesus Christ, he accepted baptism, and we left him with a Book of Mormon. The following day when we went back to follow up. I asked him if he read the Book of Mormon.. He had. (we marked for him to read 2 ne 31). He read that, and then started at the beginning of 1 nephi and read until jacob 5! Please go pick up a book and look at how much Lucas read in one night. The next day we covered the plan of salvation, and we arranged everything for Church the next day. He said the closing prayer and said `Deus Eu sai que esta Livro é verdadeiro!´ (God I know this book is TRUE!)  So Sunday morning we grabbed a ride to pick up Lucas. And that´s when he started giving us excuses, and finally Sister J asks `are you drunk´ sadly he was... He didn't come to church, we were really sad and it gave us a little taste of what our Heavenly Father feels when we break commandments or when we choose not to go to church... but now we know what we will teach today. the word of wisdom:) ... another cool story, we were stopped on the street by some 16 year old girls, they were actually kinda following us, they are in an English class and are doing a project for class and need people who speak English for extra credit, so we made a deal with them if they come to church we will help by going to class, they actually came, and really seemed to enjoy young women's. All in all a good week. Oh Caio received the Holy Ghost! Parabens!

love you all,

Siste Leonard
my new bug bites

me with a cute little family of chickens

Sister J and I

Monday, October 7, 2013


Mom we had a party for your birthday at conference!

Sister J and I in our little english room watching conference.  Everyone else showed up later

It was Sister Oliveira´s birthday.  Sister J and I got a Brazilian cake recipe from Carol.  Turned out DELICIOUS!! Super fun! Us and our zone missionaries.


Caio got baptized yesterday! que benção! Seriously Sister J says that was the absolute easiest baptism of her mission... Everything went right! we must be doing something right! And was conference not just the best thing in the word? It was. What i picked up most on was covenants and how we need to make them, keep them, and help others do the same. I am excited for these next couple weeks to continue working with the members and having lots of success. Thanks for all the prayers and keep them coming!
Sister Leonard
After the Baptism

Everyone who was baptized yesterday

Caio with his family (Mom, Aunt & Uncle)

Monday, September 30, 2013


So this week was hard, and great. I love my companion she is an angel. Anyway this week i want to talk about Caio (Kyle) He´s 13 his is the nephew of some of our recent converts, basically super ready for the Gospel in his life. We´d actually seen him at church quite a few times before and we were not sure if he was a member or not. He loves church he loves all the things we teach him, in one of our lessons when we were explaining enduring to the end we said `you know you do the little stuff every day like praying and reading scriptures...´I told him it doesn´t have to be long just 5 min. His response was “well i get home from school at 12 and don't have to work till 3 so that's three whole hours i can read the book of Mormon...” wow what a stellar kid. So we are really excited for him, and really excited for General conference this upcoming weekend!!!! Sister Johnson and I are also planning a Halloween ward party... if you have any ideas of games/ activities we could do that´d be great! 
Oh and happy birthday mom this year i called Tommy, he said he´ll speak the day after your birthday!
Love you all
Sister Leonard
Sister J and I with Salviano, who we had lunch with.  He made this cake. He's hilarious because he knows a little english and says funny things at random times.
These are my language tutors.  Emily (left) is an investigator,
Stella and Igor correct my grammar...

Monday, September 23, 2013

The miracle of the Beans

We had zone conference this week, we learned how to be great missionaries like Ammon. On Thursday I invited a Ceição and her two boys Rafael and Elifabio to baptism, woohoo! We've also had a very productive week fining new people to teach. The people here are very nice and extremely friendly, we don´t actually knock doors but clap outside of peoples walls/gates, but usually the people are just sitting outside already to hear the message of the gospel:) Yesterday we had 7 people come to Church!  Which is a lot!  And its a lot when most people don´t keep commitments very well... people are really interested in why we, sisters, choose to serve missions. I love explaining, how much this Gospel means to me, to leave my family, my schooling, a plush life with clean water, and a really cute boy to come to Brazil for a 18 months. I love testifying of Jesus Christ and of God letting the world know that they live and that God loves all his children so much! He gives us so much! We need to be thankful for that. Sister Johnson is ótima! I love her she is great and teaches me so much we have lots of fun together.

Mom be proud of me i´m eating beans... and every time i do, my body rejects them.... it's nasty. I know the lord is aware of this challenge though because half the time the members don´t have beans. Sister Johnson says i´m lucking out but really the Lord blesses me for my efforts. Ah when people ask what the weirdest thing I ate on my mission i´m probably going to have to say this cabbage and ham lasagna... I don't know how it is considered a lasagna its literally cabbage with cheese and ham as the noodles... it wasn't bad, it was just very different. Well I'll get pictures for you.

Hey for Christmas you should send me peanut butter:) and you should send it now so i get it by Christmas:) thanks mom!
How many mosquito bites can you count?  I count 15. They only bite the left arm for some reason!

A really cool butterfly!

Monday, September 16, 2013

"She's not from around here"

So much to tell you and not a lot time. Yesterday we invited 3 primary aged kids to a baptism... it would have been 4 but sister Johnson forgot... but when we go to teach them more we'll have a special invitation just for Beatrice...we don’t even know if she's old enough to be baptized but that's okay. Every one here looks really young; unless they look old then they look really old! Some things i have noticed that Brazil is lacking:

1. Peanut butter
2. Carpet
3. Air conditioning
4. Cold milk
5. Pepto bismol
6. Temperature regulated water
7. Drinkable tap water
8. Paved roads
9.even sidewalks... there are more but that's all i can think of.

Things they do have though are tile... everything is tile, even our walls. 
Everyone is really friendly. 
Lots and lots of fruit! We have a mango, lime, and guava tree. Turns out i like guava, who would have thought. 

Oh everyone says my Portuguese is really great for only being here for 6 days... except that one little boy in our lesson that started laughing when i started to teach... i did hear what his mom said "stop it! She’s not from around here, she is trying her best!" that's a great confidence booster;)

 My companion is super great though! She is always positive and giving me great tips on how to survive Brazil, literally survival tips. Mom, you did not prepare me to survive in the middle of nowhere. I’m really glad she is with me we have a lot of fun together! She’s great and we are having fun doing lots and lots of work here. I never really knew i could get so much pleasure from working really hard every single day. 

Home Sweet Dirt Hut

We made Reese's cupcakes

Sister Johnson and I did service for a member who fed us lunch.  WE cut ribbons for a primary activity

Thursday, September 12, 2013

Arrived in Brazil

Tudo bem? 
So i made it after 27 hours of airports and airplanes i made it alive. So much to tell and not a whole lot of time. Just go watch the beginning of the best two years for me;) so my new companion is sister Johnson, she´s great! I love her! She is American, which means she does know English Que Benção! (What a blessing). Right so i got to Natal on Tuesday afternoon. We had dinner with president Soares and sister Soares who is an amazing cook! And spent the night in Natal. Then the next day we registered with the police and I’m legal here) Que Benção! Then we had a 5-hour bus ride to Mossoró, which is my first area for at least the next 12 weeks. it´s really hot here;) I’m not complaining, literally everyone we talk to says that, it´s like the small talk. Instead of asking oh how is the weather they just state it’s hot. So winter here is ending which doesn’t really change much it goes from hot to really hot:) Que Benção! Better than going somewhere really cold;) the people here are really nice and it´s not taboo to talk about Deus. If anything that is one of their favorite things to talk about other than the weather. Que Benção! Also today after our district meeting, sister Johnson and i needed to buy some paper to make thank you cards. A man who worked at the store who is also a recent convert went across the street to buy us ice cream, and then the lady checking us out gave us a discount on our paper! Double Que Benção! So ya I’m still alive. Half the times i don’t know what is going on but the people are wonderful and willing to work with me. Well we have a city to convert. Love you all. 
Sister Leonard.

Sister Aleah Leonard
Brazil Natal Mission
Av. Interventor Mario Camara 2066
Dix - Sept. Rosado
Natal - RN

A lizard in Natal
Clouds over Natal.  The field is white already to harvest

ou were right mom, it's just like girlscamp, really hot and I'm not allowed to flush the toilet favorite!
Some pictures from the plane