This last week really did go by way fast!!! It is already monday again. It is crazy how fast the time passes in the mission. Time passes fast when we are anxiously engaged in a good cause, and there definitely is no better cause than the mission.
This last week, I got really sick for the first time in the field. I was out all of thursday, and my companion was out all of friday. It is definitely not the most enjoyable way to spend the mission, and I am really glad to be feeling better now. I think we ate something bad, but my companion was hit a lot harder by hit. It was really strange, because normally the one with the less time in brazil gets more sick. Oh well, I am doing everything I can to not get sick, sometimes though we do not have control over what we eat with the members that feed us everyday for lunch. But I am excited for this week, and it is great to not be sick anymore!
So things are a little bit tough in our area, as you might have noticed. It is not that common to pass through an area like ours in the mission. Sometimes, I feel like Joesph Smith, in the midst of a war of opinions and churches for that matter. Our area has soooo many churches. Everyone goes to church. There are many Jeovahs Witnesses and Seventh Day Adventists. We meet them daily and they always want to argue with us, but as missionaries we just dont have time for that, nor would it ever do any good. We can only invite people to come unto Christ. And then they can choose to accept it or not. We have definitely done a lot of inviting, that is for sure. But by inviting people to come unto Christ, and helping them do the things that lead to conversion, they will begin to feel the Spirit in their lives. The Spirit is what will change their lives and can change our lives every single day if we are worthy of its companionship.
We officially tried everything to help the wife of Carlos allow him to be baptized. We wrote her a letter and she threw it out, I have invited her many times to talk with us, but she has always declined, and refuses to let him be baptized. He was really close, but it looks like for now he will have to wait... Thanks for the prayers though. He has made a big difference in his life, and is praying and reading the book of mormon every day. One day he will get the chance to be baptized.
As for the package, peanut butter, stuff to eat, efy music, the reflections of Christ CDs, anything you think i would like!
Love you soo much!
It was good to hear that all is well at home! My mind is blown away that you are having a midwinter break at this time of the year. We fell back an hour yesterday, but my body is not really sure that fall is coming. Oh well my mind will adjust eventually. It was good to get an extra hour of sleep though!
The work here is coming along really well. The summer holidays are over here, and so the ward is back, and we are able to start working a little bit more consistently with the ward. We are really excited for this week. Every week is just getting better, and we know that to have real success, we need to anchor those that we teach to the gospel and to the members. Elder Stevenson is a great companion, and we are really working well together.
Carlos was almost baptized this week. He passed the interview, but his wife did not let him be baptized. We have tried so many things to talk to her, and she just will not listen. It was such a good reminder that things are done on the Lords Time and not ours. I do not know when everything will work out for the Family of Carlos, but I trust that it will. He really wants to be baptized, but he also doesn´t want to cause conflicts in the house. We just pray and keep looking for opportunities to talk to her. The Lord will soften her heart in his own time.
In the mean time, we are working really hard to find families. The ward is beginning to give us more references. And we are always trying to look up!
One of the things that I am learning on the mission is the importance of lifting where you stand. The Lord calls us to many places and to do many things. All of these things are important. No calling from the Lord is unimportant to Him. The Church definitely needs us to lift where we stand, to serve with all our heart, might, mind, and strength. I am grateful to have a family that is such a great example for me.
I love you all very much! Thanks for everything!!
Everything is well. I am glad that you recognized me in my pictures. I hardly recognize myself when I see myself in a good mirror. Brazil has been treating me well. I do not gain weight because I just eat breakfast and a big lunch and then work until night. It is pretty awesome.
This week, the language really improved. The Lord blesses the missionaries so much! I am understanding pretty much everybody except for really drunk people. It is pretty incredible how fast missionaries learn the language. The mission is full of miracles.
I am still here in Caiuá. The work is going well. We are definitely working really hard. The ward is coming along with us. WE spent a lot of this week trying to follow up with people, but a lot of them fell through. Often times it felt like we were just running around chasing things that were impossible to catch. It was really tough. But then we would realize that we can not do this work all alone, and would offer a quick prayer somewhere, and begin to work again. This always made a big difference for us. Prayer is so simple, but such a wonderful opportunity we have here on Earth to be guided by our Heavenly Father. I think if we truly understood how much our Heavenly Father loves us and that He is our Father, we would pray more often, with more real intent, and with greater faith.
Still no batismos, but we are getting close. This week will be a week of miracles. I just know it. Thanks for all the prayers! And dad, I love the little messages and my companion does too! We will be sure to love more this week.
Love you all so much!
Sounds like life is good for the family. Abigail is 13, wow! I hope that you got my letters for Dad and Abigail. I will try to be more on time for the rest of the birthdays.
Life is good in Cauiá. We will find out tonight if transfers are going to happen, but like dad said, it is much more common to stay two transfers now with your trainer. And I hope that I get the opportunity to stay. Because things are just looking better every single week. A lot things fell through this week, but we are still continually changing the way missionary work is done in this ward. We are really excited about the ward right now.
Our Ward mission leader, has been wanting some ward missionaries for a while, but no one was ever called. In a meeting with him, I told him a little bit about my experience as a ward missionary and some things that I thought would work better. And so we started to work on an idea. He hosted a fireside, and invited all the RMs of the ward, we have a lot, to come. He then assigned them in companionships, and is having them make goals for finding, and giving references. So basically we have 16 companionships of ward missionaries. And each has a goal of at least one reference per month. The members were super excited. Some of them have set goals of one baptism per month. The ward is really starting to work with us. Missionary work would work best, if we just went with the members to their scheduled lessons.
Ainda, nao tem batismos aqui. But we will. Carlos is still working hard, we have found out a little bit more about how we can help him, but we are also focusing a ton on finding, teaching, and baptizing families. I am excited about this, my companion is excited about this, and the ward is too. Results will come. The Lord will prepare a way to accomplish his work. I too, just want to be in tune so I can be an instrument for Him, in Caiuà.
Love you all so much! Thanks for all that you do.
It is hot, but I am doing just fine with the heat. And it rains really hard here. Nossa!
This week is Carnival. And Carnival is definitely not like the Carnival on Rio the movie, I will leave it at that.
By the way, hola is portuguese as well. It is more written though than said.
But yeah, this week was a good week. I definitely learned a lot from this last week. With all those investigators at church, we had a very busy week ahead of us. We followed up with a lot of people, but unfotunately, a lot of them are not really progressing. But there is a good chance for a baptism this weekend, hopefully for Carlos. He is so close, and really wants to do it, his family just does not give him a lot of support right now. We are helping him try to share the gospel with his wife, so that they can do this together, because truly the gospel is for families, and he will be even more happy with his whole family together. Thanks for the story about Elder Grow, I have been trying to talk to all the couples I see as well.
The ward is still pretty excited. This has been a quick 5 and a half weeks for me. The Mission is awesome, I love it so much.
Today we had the opportunity to go to the Temple. It was incredible. I will send some pictures right after. The Curitiba Temple is super pretty. I think Mom would definitely love the grounds around the temple as well.
Time is really short today!
Love you all bunches!