Sister T. has just been transferred away from me. Man, I am so doggon sad about it. She is literally one of my best friends and now I have no idea when I will see her again…. it could be years away after all because she is returning to Brasilia after this next transfer. I didn´t think that we would or could ever get this close but I have learned so much being with her. She is so spirited and amazing it´s hard to describe. In reality we have very similar personalities (snarky, unbegrudging, intelligent, pensive, joking, altogether happy souls.) I think that this is primarily why we fought in the beggining as well (we were too similar.)
However I knew it couldn´t last – she could not be my companion forever. And now I have to teach my new companion (who doesn´t speak a lick of English) where everything is in the city, which scares me a whole ton! I feel inadequate with the language, the doctrinal knowledge, and the layout of this area without Sister T. However I know that it´ll all work out fine in the end. In the words of Justin Beiber `Everything´s gonna be alri….ai…ai.ght. Be alright.` (that one´s for you Alex 😉
Heavenly Father certainly knows what he´s doing here. First, He gave me Sister T. to help me really get the spirit of the mission field among other things that I never even imagine I lacked. I have really learned not to stress about the minor things and also how you can show love for those you serve and work with. Now God is giving me another learning opportunity. He is giving me an even greater chance to learn and grow with this new challenge of helping my new companion learn the area.
So this week we had a division with the Sister Leader Trainers. A different Sister T. (from Texas who will be going to BYU in the winter semester) decided to stay with me here in the area Junção. The division helped me see that I was pretty prepared for the transfer because I realize that I know the roads pretty well.
That same day that I did divisions, I took three baths. Okay so not literally three baths in the shower. I took one shower in the morning to get ready for the day (y´know- don´t want to be a dirty, smelly and gross missionary!) I took a second bath in sweat the moment I walked out the door of our apartment (man is is hot here sometimes!) And the third bath happened when we were returning back home after our day’s work. A crazy tempest struck and, my goodness gracious!… I have never experienced such wind (nor such a sheer amount of water) in all of my life. It was so crazy, but we did make it home safely. Please give a big THANK YOU to Jeremy and Angela for this waterproof bag they got me. It saved my life that day as it has done so in many other instances here on the mission.
The latest baptism that Sister T. and I had went off without a hitch. Needless to say Alonso is a rock-star and his family is nothing but supportive. I love the mission!
I´m so jelly that the Christian Butler family is staying at our house for Christmas! That´s so super cool.
I love you all dearly and I wish you the absolute best this Christmas season! I cannot wait to talk with all of you folks. 😉 😉 😉
This week was a roller coaster! The baptism we had planned for last Saturday fell through big time. Wow. Needless to say there was another woman involved in his life. However we have a baptism for this week that I am so excited about. This kid Alonso is seriously cool. He is way zoned into the gospel. He is reading in Mosiah already in the Book of Mormon and he attends every single church meeting possible. Seriously. He is certainly an elect person. This week for example, we tried to find him in his house several different times to teach him a lesson (because his baptism is fast approaching!) but he was always gone for various reasons. However Sister T. and I didn´t fret because we knew he´d always be there on Sunday morning for church. He is super dedicated. He is just the type of kid that drinks in information about the gospel. He’s a sponge. I just love working with people that just click with the gospel and understand it so well. I really hope he has the opportunity to serve a mission someday- along with the other young men we have baptized already.
Speaking of which, my first baptism (Lenon)- went to the temple in Porto Alegre with a youth group to do baptisms for the dead. So cool! Lenon is reading Preach my Gospel, participating in all the activities, and bringing friends to church. He is a missionary´s dream! I hope that I can find more people like him in the future. People that are already prepared (or preparing) to receive the restored gospel.
How come no one told me what went down on Katy´s birthday?! I need details people… There better have been a party involved. 😛
I have not received any of the packages yet. They have likely arrived at the mission home though. The problem is that I have to wait for the next time that the Zone Leaders go up to Porto Alegre to retrieve them. They carry all of the packages and letters down here from Porto Alegre. I think that I´ll only be able to receive everything in a number of weeks. I can´t wait though!
Transfers are next week. (As in we find out next Monday what will happen). This next transfer decides weather or not I will stay with Sister T. This next transfer will be her last transfer ever! And then she goes back to Brasília to study Chemistry and what-not. Man I´m gonna miss her. My ´new mother´ (my trainer) is leaving me.
In reference to Mr. Davis and Owen – oh man! I feel for you here in Brazil. It is especially sad when people die so close to Christmas. Give Katy a big hug from me and Stix and her family also. ;(
My invitation to you all is to reach out in service during this holiday season. I recently spent an big chunk of time cleaning a very dirty house for a member. Serving really brings you closer to God and allows you to just forget yourself and all of your troubles. I know that people in the ward (whichever ward you may be in) are in need of some type of service. And if you ask and they say they´re not…well then you´ll just have to make cookies for them instead. Christ is our example this holiday season. He gave His whole entire life serving us. Use this holiday season to show the love you have for Christ and for God´s children by serving.
Thanks for all of the support that you give me here on the mission. I know that it is a really busy time of year so thanks for taking the time to email me. I love you to the moon and back. 😉 You are in my prayers.
This week we had a meeting with Elder Morôni Torgan of the Seventy. Man, it was super legit. He has a serious fire in the belly. He called each and every one of us to repentance hardcore. He certainly singed our behinds. The term ´fubeca´ is used for disobedient missionaries, and at one point he called us ´fubecas´ burros (which means asses…except that it´s not a swear word in Portuguese). He also spoke a lot about the atonement and all that Jesus Christ went through to allow us to repent of our sins. He really motivated me to be a better missionary. We all have weaknesses and we all commit errors, but the atonement of Jesus Christ will always be there to cure us of our heartache, our pains, and our afflictions. Jesus is the Christ!
The kid in the West Side Story got baptized this week!!! All of the issues resolved themselves (more or less), and he still had the desire to get baptized. Although he was extremely nervous before the baptism, I could definitely see a difference in his countenance after he emerged from the water. He was seriously so happy and just calm. It was a testimony to me of how the Spirit really works in people´s lives.
I really hope that his mother (who attended the baptism) has the desire in the future to hear more about our messages. She is into african religion stuff (Batuki). Because of this her son and husband both agreed that she would be very difficult to work with on the subject of religion. However she looked really moved during the baptism of her son. Fingers crossed! (Or rather arms folded and knees bent in prayer! Haha)
So of course all missionaries learn things on the mission. Well my testimony of the Gospel of Jesus Christ has strengthened so much since this whirlwind of a trip began. However I have also obtained a testimony of getting enough sleep. (Tangent!) One night this last week we had to take a trip late at night to another area (of sisters) and pick them up to have a sleepover in our condominium. The following morning we woke up early to travel to Pelotas. Needless to say, we got around 3 hours of sleep. Let me tell you- my body doesn´t function well on 3 hours of sleep. My companion and I suffered for 3 days straight from that one night’s lack of sleep! We´ve been extra irritable and overall just less effective. So my advice is- go to bed at a decent hour!!! It´ll save your life..
I love you all to the moon and back. Please excuse the randomness of this email. All is well in Rio Grande. I hope you celebrate Katy´s birthday like there´s no tomorrow!