Wednesday, October 14, 2015


August 10, 2015

Well family and friends, I get on the plane in approximately 7 hours!  I can't believe it's here.  It is sad.  And, yet it is joyful.  This week was incredible.

We had Leadership counsel at the beginning of the week and it was awesome.  It was the biggest GH of my life.  Our zone hit President's goals of 1 baptism and 1 reactivation per companionship per month.  We were the only one to hit both.  And, our zone is also the last to go up front and do accountability each meeting.  so we got up, the mission had a good month, but when we got up, President Brum said, "wait a minute, let's all give a good clap for this zone."  He doesn't do that.  He then talked about me and how he was proud that I didn't just throw in the towel for the last month and I went out and helped the zone and left my mark.  It was awesome!

We then visited Recent Converts and a couple other people to say good-bye and on Friday I got the bus.

Oh yeah!  On Wednesday, I did a division with Elder L. Souza from Curitiba.  He said Trevor looks really familiar but he didn't ever really meet him.  He says he thinks he just saw you in the mission office.  But he did know Elder Poe really well.  Poe passed in his ward and L. Souza did divisions with him each week.  He talked about how he's married now and I was just like, hey, I know.  haha  It was cool  He's a cool guy and a really good missionary.  Trev, see if Poe remembers Leopoldo Souza.

Then in Ribeirao Preto, Saturday was incredible.  It was the single day that really made 2 years of difficulties, sweat, tears, blood, tired feet, and all the other hard things worth every minute.  We had a self-sufficiency training at the beginning and that made me realize that I have no idea what I want to do with my life.  Then we had our interviews with President.  It was incredible.  He talked A LOT about marriage, but he said a lot of really good tings.  Definitely a lot of things to consider and he talked a lot about taking big decisions to the temple and praying and fasting.  He's an incredible man.  We then had dinner at his house with him and Sister Brum.  And Elder and Sister Hawkins, the couple missionary.  It was so good.  I just kind of sat back at the beginning and realized how much I will miss these incredible people.  I love President and Sister Brum.  They have 3 kids that live in the U.S., So I told him whenever they visit Utah to let me know and we'll go out to dinner to.  We watched a movie after our missions and pictures that we had sent in.  It was awesome.  I am so thankful that I came out as a missionary when I did.

I love you all.  I am so excited to see you and let me repeat.  MOM GETS THE FIRST HUG!!

Well folks, I've been waiting two years to say this.


Love, Elder Scott JACKSON Taylor

Keep Moving Forward!!

August 3, 2015

Well, my family and friends.  Here it is.  I still can't believe it's here.  But the dream is ending.  today is my last P-day as a missionary for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints.  It has been a crazy tow years.  Technically, it's actually only been 23 months.  due to transfers and visas, it won't be a full tow years but, it's been an incredible two years.  I have had the chance this week to reflect on a lot of what I have learned, and more importantly become during this time.  I am so thankful that the Lord allowed me this time to really become a man.  And to truly gain a testimony and help other people.  I am so grateful for the Gospel of Jesus Christ.  It is the greatest blessing that our Father in Heaven could have ever given us.  I am so thankful for that.  The chance to repent, learn, change, and move forward.  I love this work.  It is the work of God.

This week was awesome.  It was very different.  I had the chance to go on divisions with a couple new missionaries.  The purpose of the division was to see how they are and teach them a little bit of what I have learned in the last two years.  I think I learned more than taught though.  The first division was with Elder Serra.  He is from Fortaleza, Ceara, Brasil.  He is one of my favorite missionaries that I've met.  He has an incredible story of how he came back to Church, gained a testimony, and is serving a mission.  It's incredible when you can truly see the Light of Christ in someone's eyes and feel it eminating from them.  I don't know if he learned a whole lot form me, but I hope so.  I learned a lot from him.  The second was with Elder Sardan , from Espirito Santo, Brasil/Cochabamba, Bolivia.  That division was also really good.  I had the chance to just sit down with him at the end and talk for awhile.  His humility and willingness to learn just made me happy.  They are two missionaries that have great potential and I'm grateful to have been able to help them.

church in Araraquara for the last time was super bittersweet.  I think that is the only word that describes the end of a mission.  The happiness to continue on and see my family and start life again.  And the sadness to leave behind not just two years, but a people, a culture, and a new family.  I bore my testimony of when I finally felt the truthfulness of the Gospel.  And how I know that this is the Church of Jesus Christ.  It just simply is.  A lot of people came and thanked me for the work I've done.  

But the moment that sticks with me is when the Stake Patriarch came up to me after, looked in my eyes, and said, "Parabens Elder.  Missao cumprido. Voce serviu uma boa missao."   (Parabens Elder.  Mission accomplished.  You have served a good mission )
It was super simple.  Something that anyone could have said, but I felt it.  I feel that I have done what the Lord needed me to do.  My favorite hymn is "Come, Com, ye Saints."  I love this verse:
Encontramos um lar.
Hoje, libertos do pesar e dor.
Vamos todos cantar.
Partindo de nosso coracao
Bem also e com resolucao.
O nosso glorioso refrao
Tudo bem! Tudo bem!

Family and friends.  Simply.  I know this is the Church of Jesus Christ.  I know it.  I feel it.  I just simply know it.  I love it.  I just can't say it enough.  I feel it in my heart.  I am so thankful for it.  I know that Jesus Christ is our Savior.  He is the Savior of the World.  He loves us.  He died for us.  And He lives for us today.  this is His Church.  He didn't have to give us all of this, but He did.  I love Him.  I can't wait to see Him again.  I know that htis is the work of God.  I LOVE MY FAMILY!  I can't describe how much I love them.  It's been 3 years and * months since we were all together.  I love them.  I am so happy that we can and WILL be together forever.

Well, here it goes.  I love you all.
No matter what, Just Keep Moving Forward

Love, Elder Scott JACKSON Taylor

Day 7,399 in the life of Elder Scott JACKSON Taylor

July 27, 2015

This week was really good!  We have continued working a lot with less actives and doing a lot of divisions.  It was really good to do divisions with some missionaries that I hadn't been able to yet and help them out.

Sorry, I don't have a lot of time this week.  I have to send a bunch of stuff to the mission office and it's taking a while to download.  And I have to send it today.  so yeah.

We have been working with two less actives called Danielle and Pedro.  they're not family.  They actually live really far away from each other.  Danielle was a referral from a member.  She is doing well.  She was just kind of waiting for the invite to go back as well.  she is now officially reactivated.  She was invited by a returned missionary that got back from Cochabamba, Bolivia recently.  So, RM's, look for your friends and invite them back.  do it.  Pedro is the dad of a family that was recently reactivated.  He is doing well.  He just kind of struggles with commandments.  But he is coming back well and his family is doing really well.  His wife and kids are all very active now and participating in everything.  We're happy that the dad is also coming back.  The ward is now working for them to get everything going well and get sealed in the temple.

We also had a couple new investigators at Church.  Vera and maria Eduarda.  Sadly, Vera's husband, Joao, didn't go.  We still don't know why.  I think they said he was sick.  but Vera and Maria Eduarda were contacts last week and we invited them to the ward party and they went.  they went to Church yesterday and really liked it.  That was good.

I'm excited for this week.  I'm doing a couple special divisions with newer missionaries in our zone to train them to be leaders and teach them what I've learned in the last 2 years.  It's really interesting to think of everything I have learned.  I was on a division with Elder Alves on Thursday and he said, "what advice do you have for me now that you're going home?"  And I told him simply "Even though numbers are important because they represent the people we're working with, the Spirit is much more important.  We can baptize 1,000 people, and do a million contacts, but if we aren't sanctified to have the Spirit with us and be true representatives of Jesus Christ, we have failed in the eyes of God."  What matters most in our lives is having the Holy Ghost with us and doing things for the right reasons.  I have gained a very strong testimony of that this transfer.  Simply doing things because we love the Lord.  Not for our own gain, nor the recognition that comes with it.

I love you all and hope you have a fantastic week!  Have fun in Alaska Mom and Dad!

See you in tow!!!  haha  ( I just thought that was funny cause everyone says that at the beginning and ti's two years.  Now it's two weeks.  It is insane how fast it all flies by.  Soak it in and work hard!)

Love, Elder Scott JACKSON Taylor


July 20, 2015

Well kids, this week was crazy.  We did a few divisions and visited some peeps.  We had a dupla in our zone that was having some issues.  We went on a division with them on Tuesday.  It was super interesting.  I learned how simple things can be.  I got there to their area and they hadn't even planned the day.  The Elder I went with is pretty new on the mission.  So I sat down with him and talked about the importance of planning and the little things.  I asked him if they were using Preach my Gospel, the area book, and other stuff and he said no.  So I showed him how to simply follow it and plan.  It helped him a lot and they were able to resolve some of their problems.  That was good.

That night I got a call from my companion (who was in our area) and he had a surprise!  The assistants called and were coming to do a division with us Wednesday.  yeah.  They called the day before.  Well, we had actually planned another division with a different area so we kinda just threw those plans out the window and planned a new day with the assistants.  It went really well.  I was with Elder Contreras from Neoquen, Argentina!

The rest of the week we just worked and worked and visited a lot of people.  Leandro went to Church again and is doing really well.

Oh yeah!  I forgot to tell about the festa Junina! That's a really big party here.  Basically, any group of anything just has a big party in June or July and eats a lot of cowboy food.  Ha.  Totally what it is.  Our ward had it on Friday.  It was really good.  As we were inviting our investigators to it, we ran into a lady named Vera.  We invited her and she and her family went!  That night, a different ward baptized a family of 4 in our chapel.  And they wanted to watch the baptism first instead of going to the party.  We are now teaching them.  They're pretty cool.

Well, I just keep on keeping on!  I love you all and can't wait to see your little faces!

Love, Elder Scott JACKSON Taylor

Look at this crew!  I'm so good looking!
(Zone conference photo)

I made stir fry!  I'm getting good, by the way!

Me, Elder Sardan, Elder Moroni, and Elder Serra

Me and Elder Contreras

As someone who speaks Portuguese what this means :)

(Ready to date?)  Haha!


July 13, 2015

Well hello everyone.  This email is gonna be short and sweet.  I'm tired.  Haha!

This week was really good.  We went to Ribeirao Preto and had the leadership counsel to start the week.  It feels like it was like a month ago.  haha.  The counsel week is always a loooong week because of travel.  but, it's been good.  The counsel was good and we had pretty good numbers.  It was all smooth.  Our zone did well in reactivation and is doing well again this month.  We're actually looking at a huge month because two areas have families to baptize.  WOOHOO FAMILIES !!

Our area is doing really well with less actives.  We have 4 that have been to Church in the last couple of weeks and are really close to reactivating them.  The coolest is Leandro.  This is a really cool story.  I think I told part of it.  We met him "by chance".  Well, we have been teaching him for the last two weeks and made a goal for him to not only be active but possibly temple ready by the time he goes to the U.S. in about a month and a half.  He has responded really well and went to Church for the first time in about 5 years yesterday.  It was awesome.  The ward welcomed him really well and the Bishop even interviewed him and helped him out.  He's doing really well and is progressing fast.

The other is a guy named Pedro.  His son has been active for a while and his wife and daughter were reactivated about two months ago.  He went to Church yesterday and is also looking really good to come back strong.  We have a family night with them and a member on Wednesday night.

Things are going really well here and I'm loving it.  I'm tired like crazy but I know that I just have to give it my all until the end!!!

I love you all.

Love, Elder Scott JACKSON Taylor

July 4, 2015

Division with Elder Evans in Matao.

Tuesday, July 7, 2015

Happy Independence Day???

July 6, 2015

Ha.  GUESS WHAT.  Saturday was the 3rd straight Independence day (July 4th) that I have been out of the country.  BOO.  I love that parades and everything.  haha maybe next year......

This week has been GREAT.  Me and Elder Goes are doing well and kicking.  We had quite a few new investigators this week.  Sadly when it came to Sunday, no one went to Church and doesn't want to meet with us anymore, but that's ok.  We'll keep searching for God's elect.

We did teach a few Less Actives this week.  And I tell you what.  The Lord guides his servants where they need to be.  And, if we as members don't give up on those we love, we will see the fruits with time.  The Bishop gave a list of less actives that he put together for us to visit.  We visited a couple.  Including Saverio, who was reactivated and is doing well.  He is even preparing to go out with us to visit people this week.  Cool.  We also found Marcus, who went to Church once.  Hopefully he keeps going and can be reactivated.

This week, we visited a man named Benedito.  He's middle age and lives in a super humble little shack.  He is really cool.  We invited him to come back to Church.  He doesn't live very close, a solid 30-40 minute walk.  And guess what....he came all by himself.  We visited him again Saturday and asked if he would go to Church even if it was raining and he said yes.  and he went!  He walked and it was awesome.  He is doing well and we will continue visiting him.

We also were looking for a couple of the other addresses and stopped to ask some guys where a street was.  One invited us in to check on his phone and his brother comes out and say, "Oi Elders."  So, we asked if he knew the missionaries and he is a mbmer.  He even almost went on a mission.  He had his papers filled out but then decided to go back to college and got involved with the world.  His name is Leandro.  He is really cool.  He has a cousin that served a mission, then married an American and now lives in Rexburg, Idaho.  Well, he is going to visit his cousin i Idaho next month, and his cousin had already told him, "when you're here, we're going to Church every week."  haha  The Lord definitely led us straight to him at this time. We set a goal with himto get him active BEFORE he goes to Idaho.  so that he can already be ready to go to Church there.  It's really close for him to go to the U.S.  haha and guess what.....I go to Church in Utah before he goes to Idaho.  haha Crazy!!

I love you all and hope you have a fantastic week!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Love, Elder Scott JACKSON Taylor

The Beginning of the End

June 29, 2015

Holy Crazy!  It's now official.  today is the First day of my last transfer.  That's pretty crazy.  I'm just gonna go nuts and leave it all here this transfer.  It's like the 4th quarter.  Like the music we hear in the street says, "turn down for what?" haha

This week was crazy.  and super sad.

Monday:  We didn't really do a whole lot.  We just sent email and then we went home and relaxed and Elder Jake packed his bags.  The fun came a little later.  We have a really cool Recent Convert named Felipe.  He speaks English.  He was baptized about 7 or 8 months ago and we visit him every once in awhile.  We went to a restaurant called Pizzeiros.  It's a Rodizio de pizza.  (all you can eat pizza and they bring it to you).  They have a bunch of different flavors.  they bringthem around and ask if you want a piece.  Including a bunch of dessert pizzas.  Elder Jake and I ate 20 pieces of pizza each.  I don't know if Felipe ate that much, but he ate quite a few as well.  It was hard to sleep that night.  We had to go pregnant woman style and sleep on our sides and move around until we finally found a position that didn't hurt too much.
  haha It was so good!  Best normal:  Doritos Pizza.  Best Dessert:  Coconut and milk pizza.

We had Zone Conference with the Ribeirao Preto West Zone.  It was really good.  President Brum told a little bit about his story after his baptism.  He was baptized at 9 years old with the rest of his family.  He studied in a military school.  He then entered into one of the top military school in Brasil.  Actually, THE top. ha.  He wanted to go on a mission, and received a letter and a visit from James E. Faust.  At the time, the Church wanted the few members they had in the armed forces to stay and preach there.  He was made basically a missionary at the academy and taught people there with others.  There were 4 of them that were missionaries.  3 are now General Authorities or Mission Presidents.  He then continued and later received a call from i believe it was Henry B. Eyring calling him as a mission president.  He gave up a big promotion in the army (He was already very high up) to come be a mission President.  We then talked of the importance of the Book of Mormon.  President read thescripture in Doctrine and Covenants about the new covenant of the Book of Mormon, and that if we don't use it in our every day lives, we will be responsible for it.
A couple from the ward then took us out to eat Coxinhas from a super famous spot in Ararquara.  It's famous in the entire country.  It's soooooo good.  Look up Coxinhas.  They are fantastic.  Ask Trev to make them!

The rest of the week was pretty normal.  just saying goodbye to all the recent converts and less actives and investigators.

Friday was so sad.  Elder Jake left with Elder Wood that night.  We went and visited Marcia and Bel to say goodbye and they both started crying.  We then visited Ana and Anne.. They both also started crying.  I almost even started crying.  Elder Jake has been my best companion and has become one of my best friends.  I'm thankful that The Lord gives us opportunities to meet people like that in our lives.  People that just make you better.  I learned a lot from him and we had a lot of fun and success.  He really taught me to grow up and to lighten up.  haha.  It really was awesome.  I've been sad the last few days because I just feel alone.  I've just been traveling between my area and Ala 3 here because we had to take care of both wards this weekend.  It's hard to be a Zone Leader alone.  I am really thankful for Elder Jake and the time I got to spend with him.

My new companion got here today!  His name is Elder Goes (said goys.  Like, rhymes with boys.)  He is from Manaus, Amazonas, Brasil!  The same city as my trainer Elder Souza.  He is from a different part though.  Manaus is huge.  So, I was "born" to someonefrom Manaus.  and now I will be "killed" by someone from Manaus.

I'm super excited for this transfer and keep praying for me!!!!!

I love you all and hope you have a fantastic week!!!!!!!!!!!

Love, Elder Scott JACKSON Taylor

Sorry about still no pictures!!!  I forgot my chord in the rush of transfers today!! I promise next week.