Monday, April 30, 2012

Anxious and Ready

Britt was anxious and ready for physical therapy this morning and thought that he could do it without any pain meds for his leg. The pain got the best of him and that slowed him from doing everything he had hoped to do. Despite the great pain he had, he still walked 2 long halls to get to the therapy room and that was a first! After a good rest and lunch he set out for his 2nd session of physical therapy. He made it half way down the hall and became very nauseous. That seemed to control his afternoon, so he spent the rest of the day in bed. He did pass another "swallow" test, and now he can eat anything. Hooray! Britt did have an enjoyable evening visiting with a couple of great friends. Seeing his face light up was a wonderful sight to see. We have been blessed in so many ways over the past 6 1/2 weeks. Our testimony has been strengthen as we have learned to rely on our Savior Jesus Christ and we are grateful for our Heavenly Fathers constant love. We want each one of you to know of our love for you and have been touched by your testimonys also. Sending our love, Steven, Karla & Britten

Sunday, April 29, 2012

A Wonderful Sabbath Day

It has been a wonderful Sabbath day. Britten didn't have quite the same energy as Saturday, but still had a very good day. In the morning an Elder from the church stopped by and asked if we would like to take the sacrament. Britt said, "Oh, I would love to! It has been 6 or 7 weeks since I have taken the sacrament." As Steven knelted and helped bless the sacrament, the spirit filled the room. As tears filled mine and Stevens eyes, the prayer had a deeper sense of meaning. A sincere love for our Savior Jesus Christ, filled our entire being. Afterwards, Britten said, "Dad, you did a beautiful job. Thank you." The rest of the day was enjoyed being together as a family. Seeing our boys laugh and joking around with each other was a pure delight! Britten has enjoyed getting to know his niece, Taylee. When it was time for the kids to head home, Britt told them all goodbye, but said that he was going to keep Taylee with him. Taylee has won her uncles heart! After a good rest, he called a few friends. It was a joy to see his face light up, as he had so many things he wanted to tell them. Britt still struggles with some words. He knows what he wants to say, but has a hard time getting it out. We know with speech therapy and time, that it will come easier for him. It is wonderful reading letters, emails and comments on the blog to him, as we see his face light up. He will say, "Wow, that is so cool that people will say that to me!". Elder Schenk marvels that he has so many friends and that they care about him and his recovery. We appreciate each and every one of you and the overwhelming support that we feel. We are grateful for a beautiful Sabbath Day, and pray that all of us will have a wonderful week! Sending our love, The Schenks

Saturday, April 28, 2012

Glory to God

We had a super awesome day today! Lora and I were able to spend the entire day with our amazing brother! Just when I thought I had seen it all, he threw us a curve ball showing off all day. He showed the occupational therapist how well he could dress himself and brush his teeth! After this he decided it was time to be a clown! Every time he saw the opportunity to tease, he seized it. We made a few phone calls to family and when they would answer he would reply "hello... Hello, HELLO, hello". On the another end, the common response was " can you hear me? Are you there?" After as while he would start chuckling and say "I'm just joking, I can hear you!" This was one of the many pranks of the day. In his morning physical therapy session he really decided to impress us. With me on one side and the therapist on the other, he walked. He insisted he could do it on his own and walked nearly 5 minutes with us only there to help him with his balance from time to time. We sat and shared stories and memories for hours. He didn't even nap until after noon. He had us rolling on the floor laughing on more than one occasion. As always, I couldn't help but notice how kind and polite he was to everyone. (even those of us who had to torture him from time to time) It has always been in his nature to treat people with so much love. After a good nap he went for another walk. This time he went for almost 7 minutes, waving to people along the way. He made a joke about being ready to run, as he pumped his arms up and down. There were multiple times during the day when I would just stare at him in disbelief. It was only yesterday when he was in the ICU, where we were very concerned about him. It is only by the Grace of God that these miracles could happen. I am so grateful to him and our Savior Jesus Christ for sparing him so that we can continue to share these kind of days together. I look forward to the days to come and can't wait for him to be well enough for some of you to share in these victories in person with him! Love Logan and Lora

Friday, April 27, 2012


Thanks again for all the prayers and strength that we feel from so many. Thanks for the well wishes and support both typed and sent and untyped and sent...we appreciate both! We never knew we had so many friends and family. Today was a day of transition. Elder Schenk is back in rehab tonight. The great part of that is that he is healthier! So far the fevers have subsided and he has been much less nauseous. He has been able to keep food, drink and meds down. The difficult part of that transition is that it is like starting over. It kind of feels like we lose a day each time we move. It really shouldn't be that difficult, but we don't live in a difficulty free world. I know that everyone really does the best they really can and the reality of life is that we all fall short of perfection. Perfection is something we all must strive for but is impossible for any of us to achieve without Our Savior Jesus Christ and with Him anything is possible. We thank Our Heavenly Father for all good things.

Thursday, April 26, 2012

According to your faith

It is so easy to report about the day when things have been good and we see progress. On the other hand it is a bit more difficult on the tough days. Today, Britten improved, but we had a hard time focusing on the good because he was battling a severe headache all day. Elder Schenk has struggled with headaches, often migraines, his whole life. Unfortunately, this was one of those days. His headaches seem to be triggered by heat, exhaustion, lack of sleep or dehydration. He has learned to manage them as well as he can. As parents, when Britten received his mission call to Brasil Sao Paulo East Mission, we were a little concerned about him going to such a hot climate. About 3 months into his mission we received an email from Elder Schenk telling of an awful migraine. It left him in bed, with little sight and part of his face and his arm numb. His companion gave him a blessing and promised him, according to his faith, that he would not miss any more work the rest of his mission. Elder Schenk has shared his testimony with us that over the next year and a half, he has had a few headaches, but never one that stopped him from his work. He has been an example to us of placing his trust and faith in his Savior Jesus Christ and his loving Father in Heaven. We are grateful to them for our bounteous blessings. We are thankful to all of you for your strength and prayers, and we include you in ours as well. We know that all prayers are heard and answered.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Thankful for a New Day... And Wonderful Family and Friends

Today was an improvement over the last couple of days. Brittens high fevers subsided and he was finally able to keep a little food down as he was less nauseous. A couple more good days to get a little stronger and he will do great in therapy sessions. I think being sick to your stomach is one of the worse things to deal with. My heart goes out to those who have to deal with that on a regular basis. We want to take a moment to thank Logan and Lora at home for being Mom and Dad! They have done amazing, taking care of things at home, and most especially being there for Canon and Jaxon. We also have very special neighbors and friends at home who have made this s easy for us. We love you all! Thank you all for your help, prayers, and strength. We thank Our Merciful Father and Savior for all our blessings. We look forward to more small improvements tomorrow.

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Rough Day

Britt has had another rough, rough day.  Very high fever persists along with throwing up all day, so they have moved him out of rehab and to the medical floor where they will  try and figure out whats going on.  It has us very concerned because the ear infected is where the brain injury is.  It is so close to the injury that they need to stop the infection.  He has been throwing up all day and not been able to keep any medication or anything down.  We just pray they can get on top of it.  We really feel if they can just get him feeling better, that rehab will go great. We continue to remind ourselves that things happen for a reason. Heavenly Father is in charge. It is not for us to ask why, it is for us to trust and have faith and learn from our experiences. This is a tough one for me. Thank you all so much for your faith and prayers. We can feel of your strength and also the Comfort of Our Savior Jesus Christ. All our love, Steven, Karla and Elder Schenk

Monday, April 23, 2012

"Doubt Not, Just Believe"

The tests continued into the wee hours of the morning. But, he still managed to get some much needed rest. This morning, it was discovered that Britten had a severe ear infection. We and the Hospital Staff are hopeful that, that infection is what has been responsible for the fever, nausea and Elder Schenk not feeling well. There are many blood tests and cultures being monitored to be sure there are not other problems. It is already evident this afternoon that he is feeling a little better. We are optimistic that treating the ear infection can help him to get back on the road to recovery. We have received so many letters, cards, emails as well as the comments on this blog. Thank you all so much for your, love, faith and prayers. We cannot adequately express our love and appreciation to all who are pulling for Elder Schenk. We love you all! We can only attempt to express our love as well to our Merciful Father in Heaven and His Amazing Son Jesus Christ! We love them and can only try to express that love by testifying of them and striving to be obedient and faithful. All our love, The Schenks

Sunday, April 22, 2012


We were hoping for a good day today, but Britten continues to be nauseous. He has started running a fever and we have noticed some increase swelling. The Doctor ordered some blood work and a couple of different CT scans, trying to get to the source of the problem. We are concerned and appreciate all the prayers in His behalf. We received a package and letter today from a "new friend" in Washington DC. He read about Brittens accident in the Deseret News. He said that people from all around the world are praying for Elder Schenk, and feel like HE is their son. Our love and gratitude goes out to each one of you. To know of the love that you have for All of the Lords Missionaries and especially our son at this time is very heart warming. We are so grateful that Elder Schenk could be an Ambassador of Jesus Christ and serve the wonderful people in Brazil. All our love, Steven & Karla Schenk

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Slow and Steady

Today Britt went for a walk down the hall with assistance from the PT's. His steps are slow and steady, but improving. We went for a wheelchair ride to the patio, and got a little fresh air. It was nice to go outside and enjoy the beautiful weather. When we got back to the room, Britt started to feel sick to his stomach again. We can't wait for his stomach to calm down and let him enjoy the food he has been wanting so badly to eat. We told Karla that it is important for her to take a little time for herself. So while one aunt stayed with Britt we took Karla shopping for some clothes for him, it was great! It's so wonderful to see how much Britt improves everyday. We are so grateful for all of your prayers. We can feel all of the support and love, and know that many prayers have been answered. Love Yvett, Karen and Leslie (Britt's Aunts)

Friday, April 20, 2012

Precious Gifts

Britten struggled again today with being nauseous. To be sick in bed really slows down all therapy's. So again, he got a lot of sleep that he missed out on the past 5 days. In the late afternoon he felt slightly better and decided to call his little brother Jaxon, to wish him a happy birthday. They had a short, sweet visit. Britt told Jaxon that his birthday present to him was something really great. It was him, walking down the hall and back! Jaxon said, "that's so awesome"! Sometimes in life we have to take a step back to really appreciate the small, simple things. A walk down the hall is a precious gift, that we should never take forgranted. As we come to the end of this 5 week journey, we give thanks for so many precious gifts. Precious gifts, like life itself, our dear family and friends, but most of all the love of our Father in Heaven and the pure love of our Savior Jesus Christ. All our love, The Schenk Family

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Every Moment , Thank God

They told us that Britt would have up and down days. The transition from Brazil, then from one hospital to another has been hard on Elder Schenk. He has not felt good today and has been very nauseous. Because of this he wasn't able to do any therapy. He was able to get much needed rest and we pray that he will feel better in the morning. The obstacle slowing him down now is a terrible pain in his leg and foot. The Doctors are thinking some nerve damage. So we are just trying to keep the pain under control, while trying to keep physical therapy going. Britten was so exited that he passed the "swallowing" test, so now he can have liquids and foods again! Several Doctors came in today for consultations. We we're most excited about his eye exam. While he has slight vision in one eye, the Opthomologist said his eyes looked good. The need to do more tests but the best test is "time". We have faith that improvement will come with more time. We are so grateful for each one of you and the love and concern that you have shown our family. I sent this thought to an individual about a year ago, going through a similar situation. She sent it back to me today. It is a great reminder for each one of us. Happy moments - Praise God. Difficult moments- Seek God. Quiet moments - Worship God. Painful moments - Trust God. Every Moment - Thank God. We give thanks to God for every blessing and miracle we have recieved. All our love, Steven and Karla

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Hard work

They told us that Britt would have up and down days. The transition from Brazil, then from one hospital to another has been hard on Elder Schenk. He has not felt good today and has been very nauseous. Because of this he wasn't able to do any therapy. He was able to get much needed rest and we pray that he will feel better in the morning. The obstacle slowing him down now is a terrible pain in his leg and foot. The Doctors are thinking some nerve damage. So we are just trying to keep the pain under control, while trying to keep physical therapy going. Britten was so exited that he passed the "swallowing" test, so now he can have liquids and foods again! Several Doctors came in today for consultations. We we're most excited about his eye exam. While he has slight vision in one eye, the Opthomologist said his eyes looked good. The need to do more tests but the best test is "time". We have faith that improvement will come with more time. We are so grateful for each one of you and the love and concern that you have shown our family. I sent this thought to an individual about a year ago, going through a similar situation. She sent it back to me today. It is a great reminder for each one of us. Happy moments - Praise God. Difficult moments- Seek God. Quiet moments - Worship God. Painful moments - Trust God. Every Moment - Thank God. We give thanks to God for every blessing and miracle we have recieved. All our love, Steven and Karla

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

A Long Day-A Late Post

First of all I would like to apologize that this post is so late. I know many people check it in the evening before they go to bed. We have all had a very long day today.
Earlier in the day we had a great time talking with Britten. His speech is improving slowly and we are so excited for the progress he has made. We laughed and joked about old memories and were impressed with some of the things he could remember.
Britten was moved to a new rehabilitation facility late this afternoon. In the morning there will be several different therapists that will evaluate and consult Britten's condition. Once they have an idea of what he can do they will start working him hard. There is going to be a lot of work in the months ahead, but we know Britt has a very strong desire to recover and will not give up.
We are so grateful to our Father in Heaven and for the mercies that he has extended. The progress that Britten has made the last 10 days has been absolutely incredible. It has been nothing short of miraculous. We are so grateful to EVERYONE for their thoughts, prayers, and love. We are truly blessed! With Love,

Monday, April 16, 2012


Britten continues to improve. He probably wore himself out talking today. He is now out of ICU. We have written a lot about miracles in the month since the accident. We are so grateful to all of those who have left such positive comments, as well as all who we know were praying, we have felt the power and support everyday. There are some of our brothers and sisters who don't believe that miracles happen today. We are all entitled to our own opinions. I have been waiting for the right time to put this on the blog. Perhaps, now is the time. When we got off the plane in Brazil we were greeted with the news that the CT scans revealed that Elder Schenk had been several days without blood-supply or oxygen to his brain. The trauma had been too massive and great. When he arrived at Einstien Hospital the Neuro- surgeon said, "why did you bring him here? There is nothing we can do for him." While I'm no expert, that is not good news. What that really meant was that there was no chance, at least medically and scientifically speaking, he couldn't survive or make any kind of recovery. Every Doctor, Surgeon, Nurse and Therapist without exception that we have met on this journey have been caring, compassionate and competent. Many of them have acknowledged Divine Intervention in Britten's case. Those who don't have the "facts," I believe, are the only ones who don't realize that we have truly witnessed miracles. For me, it is as if, He said, "Elder Schenk, take up thy bed and walk, thou hast unfinished work to do." We know that He lives! He loves all of us! He hears and answers all our prayers, in His own time and way! We are so grateful to Him for His Infinite Mercy and Miracles in Britten's behalf. Jesus Christ is our Only Hope.

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Welcome Home

Welcome home Elder Schenk!    Today the family got to welcome home Elder Schenk.  When he saw/heard us he stretched out his arms and started to cry. We just embraced him.  As the tears flowed, we were just so grateful to be home! 
    The therapist gave him a voice box so he would be able to talk to us.  When Elder Schenk's family came in, he was definitely happy to see them.  He put his hand out and said, "I've missed you all so much."  It was a great reunion!  Tears were shed.  Tears of joy, for his safe return home.
     The next 2 days will be evaluations with the different doctors and therapists. We know that many will want to come and visit, but Britten will need some time.  We will let you know when he is up for a visit. 
    We are so appreciative to each one of you for your faith and prayers in Elder Schenk's behalf.  We have truly felt comfort in all the support you have given us, as we have felt our Heavenly Father's arms wrapped around us.
    We love you all, Steven and Karla

Saturday, April 14, 2012

Counting our Blessings

We give thanks for blessings and miracles from a loving Father in Heaven and good medical care. Elder Schenk has done so well and improved so very fast. We feel like one of the biggest challenges before him is his vision. We are sure that he can see, but it is very limited. We know we need to be patient and we also know that if it is Heavenly Father's will, it will happen. We want to thank so many for their comments on the blog. They have been so positive and uplifting to us. We know that so many are praying with faith and we so appreciate your prayers. There have been countless offers to help us in so many ways, both in Brazil and at home. Your support for us coupled with the atonement of our beloved Savior Jesus Christ and the companionship of the Holy Spirit has made this experience truly a blessing for us.
All our love,
Steven, Karla, and Britten

Friday, April 13, 2012

A Most Excellent Day

Britten had a excellent day today! He ate some new foods and did very well eating and swallowing. For the first time, the therapist tried the "voice box" in his trach. He counted in English, Portuguese, and said some other words. Of course it is not his voice, but it is audible. He wrote "Thank U" on a piece of paper to one of his awesome friends who has spent a lot of time and several nights with him. He thanked one of the nurses for getting him a drink by kissing her hand. We consider all these things miracles and are amazed as our Father in Heaven continues to shower blessings upon us and Elder Schenk. We are also very grateful to all who are praying for our son and others like him.
All our love,
Steven, Karla, and Britten

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Challenges and Trials

Today Elder Schenk is doing really well. He continues to try new foods and his physical therapy is going well. We know he has a long way to go, but we know he is making great strides every day.

We would like to share an email that Elder Schenk sent to our family a few months ago. It just goes to show what kind of a man he has become while serving the lord and the people of Brazil.

Hey family,
    My companion and I were really bummed out cause we had been working so hard and good these last three weeks, especially this week, and then everything fell through. Last night as we were lying down at home, I was really thinking about this. Why would all of this happen, almost everything that could have gone wrong, went wrong, even though we are being so obedient and working hard. As I was thinking, I realized why.  
    Even though in our lives, when it seems we´re doing so good, and working so hard, and being so righteous, there are challenges. Because as we are doing what is right, yes, we are doing good.  But there is no way to continually get better. There have to be challenges and trials in our lives, to make us rise just a little higher, do just a little better. It is those challenges and trials that shape who we are, and depending on how we react to them, we can become even better and stronger and more prepared.
    Just like in swimming. I learned a lot of things from my swim coach, but one of them that I will always remember that she taught is about this subject. She taught, "You can swim really good, and have a great technique, but if you don´t feel pain or push yourself to above what you can handle, you won´t get any better. Yes, you will still be a good swimmer with good technique, but unless you push yourself above the limits and make yourself feel pain, you can´t become better, and therefore you can´t be the best you can be."
    There is a famous quote that says this: "Just as a gem cannot be polished without friction, and man cannot be perfected without trials."
    Challenges and trials are a part of this life. We agreed that they would be a part when we accepted Christ´s plan. I don´t believe that God makes those things happen to us, but He allows them to happen because He knows that it is through those challenges and trials that we will become better, and that we can become the best we can.
    And the same thing applies here in my mission. It seems like this area is one of these huge challenges and trials. But because of them I´m becoming a better missionary and I´m more prepared for life after.
Love you so much!
Elder Schenk

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

A Darn Good Day!

Dear Ladies and Gentleman,

    I'm excited to tell you that my super awesome brother had a darn good day!  Today during physical therapy Britt managed to stand up 10 times! After that, he didn't think that was good enough and decided to show off a bit.  With help from two cool nurses Britt walked to one side of the room and then back! Mom says Britt is strong. He is weak, but strong! It is really awesome and I am really excited that he is getting a lot better.  I'm really proud of him for taking those big steps and cant wait for him to come home and play basketball with me!

    I'm thankful for all you guys for praying for my big brother and helping out with these miracles. I know that Britt will get better and that the Lord will choose the right path for him. I know you can get through this Britt. I love you.

Britt's coolest little bro named Jaxon

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Breakfast in Bed!

We thank all of our family and friends for all of your support and prayers. You are a source of strength for us. Elder Schenk continues his improvement. Remember how we told you that Britt would have to learn how to eat? He had yogurt, grape jello and grape juice in a box for breakfast. He did amazing! He did get a bit excited with the straw and the juice box and sputtered once. I asked him if it was orange flavored jello? He nodded, No. I asked him if it was grape? He nodded, Yes! The Therapist seemed impressed...that was our first session. We really don't have words to adequately express our gratitude to our Heavenly Father and his son Jesus Christ. We love them! Heavenly Father loves all his children and Jesus Christ is our only hope. Please know of our love for all of you! Steven, Karla & Britten

Monday, April 9, 2012

A Great Day!

We had a great day today! Elder Schenk had a peaceful night and morning. In the afternoon things changed a bit. He had some visitors. His good friend who spent the first 4 nights and days in the hospital with him, hadnt seen Britt since then. When Britten responded to him he became emotional, with tears of joy streaming down his face. They had a awesome time together! Then Elder Schenks Mission President and his sweet wife came and it was another glorious exchange of love and devotion! Earlier in the day, we had explained to Britten that in order to get rid of the trach and gastronomy tube, he would have to learn to swallow. He would have to be able to drink and eat food. As we watched him through out the day he looked as though he was practicing swallowing. We wondered if that was really what he was doing. This evening he let us know that he wanted water. The nurse gave him half a cup of water and a tray to spit in. He held the cup all by himself and put it to his lips. He took a little water, and to all of our surprise, He swallowed it! He continued this until all the water was gone, and he did it without coughing or sputtering. I guess that was not good enough. He downed another half cup of water. We now know, he was practicing! Here we are at the end of another day, marveling at the miracles and blessings received from our loving Father in Heaven. We are thankful for the prayers of all our loving family and friends. Steven, Karla and Britten

Sunday, April 8, 2012

A Wonderful Easter Sunday

This morning was wonderful! It was a day of firsts. When we arrived at the hospital Britten was getting ready for the day. The nurses started him brushing his teeth and then he took over. Then he held the cup and the nurse helped him put it to his mouth to swish the rinse around. The nurse handed me the lip balm and so I put it in Britten's hand. He then smoothed the balm on his lips! We all cheered! When he heard the cheer he snapped his fingers and gave the thumbs-up sign. We all laughed with joy! Elder Schenk took my hand and put it up to his lips and kissed it. I said, Britt, did you just kiss me? He nodded his head, yes. This was my first kiss from my missionary! Yes, it tugged at my heart strings. Steven told Britt he brought his electric razor so he could shave his whiskers. Britt reached up and stroked his few whiskers. Steven said to him, "you really dont want to shave it, do you?" Britten shrugged his shoulders, got a cute grin on his face and shook his head, No. We laughed and laughed. It was great to be laughing again at simple, fun things! We probably better get him shaved before his interview with his Mission President tomorrow! Elder Schenk then took the rest of the day off. It was a very special Easter Sunday in the Hospital with Britten. He slept the whole afternoon ( off the ventilator). It gave us time to reflect on the amazing gift from Our Savior of the Atonement and the Resurection. We have been so richly blessed the past few weeks. We witnessed miracles each and every day and have grown closer to Our Father in Heaven. We know of many of you who are facing your own trials at this very moment and yet we feel of your support, faith and prayers. We are praying for you and know that you will be blessed. All our love, the Schenks

Saturday, April 7, 2012

Another Great Day

After a quiet day yesterday we had a relaxing but great day. Elder Schenk got a work-out during physical therapy. We were pleasantly surprised with how much he participated in all the exercises. When his teeth were brushed he swished the rinse around and then spit it into a cup. When Karla had Brittens brothers on the phone he took the phone in his hand and held it to his ear to listen. We believe he is now conscious but still there are quiet (sleepy) times. He truly is improving every day. Britten has had wonderful nurses and therapists that we have grown to love. Even though there is a language barrier we have become pretty good playing charades! When our favorite male nurse wants to communicate with us he uses Mr. google to try to translate. He left us a note tonight as his shift was over. The note said, "We are super happy and proud of the evolution of Britten! He arrived here in the ICU and was super serious. He stepped foot and certainly will give millions of steps. On Thursday I realized you guys were in distress and tears and left to transpire because he had gotten worse. But between high and low came the result of an improvement and excellent going forward and only success! The contribution of this improvement was the presence of you! For sure when he gives words again, Britten will tell you guys, Thanks Mom and Dad, love you guys!". We know that all good things come from our loving Father above and through his son Jesus Christ. We continue to give thanks to each and every one of you for your faith and prayers. We love you! Steven, Karla, and Britten

Friday, April 6, 2012

The Day After

Elder Schenk had a very quiet day. He continued to respond, but seemed tired from yesterday's eventful day. I suppose he deserves a rest! He had a nasty cough at times. We guess that his lungs are trying to clear the last of the pneumonia. All tests and cultures remain very positive. The doctor says things are great. Patience. Our thanks continues to all for your faith and prayers, and to Our Heavenly Father and Our Savior Jesus Christ for answering those prayers. We ask for blessings upon all others who are struggling as well. All our love, Steven, Karla and Elder Schenk

Thursday, April 5, 2012

A Great Day

We can't hold back the tears. Tears of joy, they are! Steven had the opportunity of being the temple escort for one of Elder Schenk's very good friends who has his own mission call, and leaves soon. The Sao Paulo temple is beautiful and it was a privilege to be there in Elder Schenk's stead. Britten responded to doctors, nurses, Mom and Dad! He answered yes or no questions by nodding his head and giving thumbs-up! He sat up in a chair next to his Mother for 3 hours. Light fevers still persist, but yesterday's cultures still look good. Miracles occur today! We know, and so do most of the hospital staff in his unit. There is no denying the Hand of The Lord in the events of the past 20 days! We continue to be grateful to all of you for your prayers and support. We still have a long way to go. With our Heavenly Father and our Savior Jesus Christ, all things are possible.

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Much Like Yesterday

We are so grateful to those who are taking care of things at home, those who are taking great care of us and Britten here. The prayers and support we have felt from so many have made it easy for us to be optimistic and positive. The strength and calm assurance we feel from Our Savior Jesus Christ and The Holy Spirit have made it easy for us to Believe and have no doubts. Elder Schenks fever was not quite so high today. He seemed tired and so he rested most of the day. The fluid from around his lungs was initially negative for bacteria, but cultures will be more certain the next few days. Britten did seem to communicate a couple of times with his mother today. We are being patient. Each day his lungs are a little better. We understand now, he had a fairly severe pneumonia. We thank Our Father in Heaven for his many blessings. All our love, The Schenks

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Another Good, Quiet Day

Elder Schenk had a fever most of the night and seemed very tired today. The CT scan of the head was positive. The brain swelling continues to decrease. The CT scan of the lungs showed the lungs are much better but revealed some fluid around the lungs. They are testing to see what the fluid is and if that could be the source of his fever. Britten was very quiet today but still showed some signs of responding to Doctors and Staff. We are learning that we need to be patient and positive and not to expect huge improvements everyday. Some days are going to be slower, but all improvement, no matter how small, is great! One thing that doesn't change. Our Heavenly Father and His Son Jesus Christ love us all! They are in charge. They're Will be done. We thank you again for all your faith and prayers in Elder Schenk's behalf and for many others in need as well. All our love, Steven, Karla and Elder Schenk

Monday, April 2, 2012

More Miracles

Thanks to all for your continued faith and prayers. Elder Schenk had a "busy" night and this morning was tired and quiet. He did manage a slight smile for his mother as she held his hand this morning. Then this evening as Pres. Moreira was talking to him, he smiled and then almost seemed to giggle at his joke. Sister Moreira said he mouthed some words to her. More miracles in our book. One of the nurses was talking to Sister Moreira in Portuguese and said "that we are seeing miracles, Gods hand at work". His lungs are getting stronger and with very little oxygen (25%). Each day he is getting closer to getting off the ventilator. New CT scans tonight and will tell us more in the morning. We are so grateful to our loving Heavenly Father for these miracles. He is in charge. He and our Savior Jesus Christ love us all and know what is best. Steven, Karla and Elder Schenk

Sunday, April 1, 2012

What a Day

Wow, what a day it has been! Elder Schenk was so active trying to sit up, and scratch his itches! He was itching all over and it was driving him nuts. At first he was bringing his leg up to his chest so he could scratch it. Then both legs. Then he started pulling the thigh- high compression socks off. He had all of us laughing. The nurses came in to see what we were laughing at. They were all cheering..Yeah, Britten! We are happy he is so active but it is about wearing us out trying to keep him under control so he doesn't hurt himself. He is still not responding to commands but we have faith that it will happen. It is amazing to see Heavenly Father's hand in every miracle. We are still just so amazed at all the prayers, support and love from so many! We will be eternally grateful. Steven, Karla & Elder Schenk

The Future is as Bright as your Faith

I thought that I would explain about the picture on the top of the blog. Last year Elder Schenk sent home some pictures of his mission. One of the pictures captured my heart. It was the picture of him and his companion, Elder Rocha walking 2 hours through the mountains of Guaratingueta to teach a family. I decided to have this picture enlarged and give it to Steven for Father's Day. How trilled Steven was and how beautiful it looked on our wall. I decided I wanted a inspirational quote or saying to go above the picture that would give meaning to our whole family. As the next month went by I pondered on what it should say. Some of my ideas were, "Have I done any good in the world today", or "Faith in every footstep". Then in one of Elder Schenk's emails he used the quote " The future is as bright as your faith". That was it! That was what needed to hang above this picture. I never knew that it would have so much meaning to our family down the road. Thank you Pres. Monson for these encouraging words that has inspired our family the past year, but especially the past 2 weeks. "Fear not, Be of good cheer. The future is as bright as your Faith". As we have listened to General Conference, we listened to it in a different way. With a contrite heart, we humbly listened how we can improve our lives and become closer to our Savior Jesus Christ.