So I finally received y'alls letters that y'all sent on May 17th, after we skyped. I loved mom´s comment in her letter, "You’ll probably get this in June." ha.. More like August! :) Bem-vindo ao Brasil!! lol
But I was super stoked to get it and we had an awesome week!! Me and Elder Fernandez are kickin butt here in Itapoã. We have a lot of fun together and I really like workin with him. He has been teachin me some Spanish too. I’m able to understand most of it but learnin how to speak some words too. We had many really spiritual tearjerking lessons this week!! We also got to have a BBQ with the Elders Quroum on Saturday!! It was a good time, had some investigators, got to see the woods and some Brasilian forests, and eat some good Brasilian bbq. Churrasco!!
Augosto, who was baptised last week is doing awesome!! He’s such a champ! We show up to church yesterday like right when it started, Augosto was already there (30 minutes early) and he brought two friends with him! He was lookin fresh in his white shirt, tie, and a suit coat with jeans and nikes!! wat a boss!! Me and him have grown super close. He gave me a card the other day, that he designed with photos from those church pamphlets we have given him. It really made me realize the impact that we have made in his life. He told me how I am his best friend and that he is so grateful that I helped him find the right path that leads to salvation, and that he knew the first day that I came to his house that we were going to be great friends and that I would baptize him!
These are words comin from a 13 yr old dude!! He’s a stud. He signed a contract to play professional soccer for the team here in Brasília!! He thought about going and playin for a team in another part of Brasil but stayed here cause of family. So next year, he can start training with the team and will be on the "minor league" until he turns 16, then can be on the team. Pretty awesome!!
Yesterday, Augosto went with us and Raimundo to the baptism that the other missionaries had! He was so excited to go, and support the new people. He really is lookin forward to getting the priesthood and being able to take part in the duties that come with that. I’m so proud of that guy!!
We had an awesome lesson with a great family: Jurandy, Ilma, Diego, and Igor! We taught them the Gospel of Christ, and it was super spiritual, especially at the end. It was incredible. I could feel God´s love for them so strong!! and it made me realize too how much he loves me as well. cause we are all God´s children! no matter where we are from or what color our skin is. One thing I am so grateful for about being a missionary is when we are teaching people, and you feel the Spirit whisper to your heart what you need to say, and to feel God´s love for that person or family you are teaching! it is incredible and difficult to explain!! At the end of the lesson we marked a baptismal date with them.
We have been teachin Ibraim, whose wife (Leila) is a recent convert and they have two little kids. We have been helping Ibraim make goals so he can stop smoking and drinkin. He’s doing good and he really is wantin to stop!!
Raimundo and Ivaneide and their family are still doing awesome!! I have enjoyed so seein how much Raimundo has progressed since his first Sunday back to church, which was my first Sunday here in Itapoã. He and Ivaneide haven’t missed yet, 7 times in a row! They are plannin on getting married around August 20th and then afterwards Ivaneide will be baptised!! Raimundo is such a stud, he really wants to help his whole family and others find the gospel and "partake of the fruit". We read the story of the Tree of Life (Lehi´s dream) in 1 Nephi chapter 8 in the Book of Mormon with them this week. A part that jumped out to me was when it started out, Lehi was walkin in darkness and didn’t know where to go, so he started praying unto the Lord, and then a light came and he could see. It made sense, cause sometimes we feel like in life, we might be having some difficulties and thinkin we are in a hole and that our life is not lookin too bright, but lookin dark. That is when we need to pray unto the Lord for help, and when we do so, we will begin to see the light and he will "carry" us out of the darkness. But it wasn’t until Lehi Acted! and prayed! so sometimes we need to take the initiative and act! can't just sit back on the couch and expect things to get better, need to act.
I got to do a couple of Baptism interviews this week for the missionaries in my district. It is always blast gettin to do interviews and see how excited they are to get baptised. One of the guys that I met with is João, he is 19 and is planning on serving a mission a year from now after he is baptised!! he is already workin and wanting to save up his money!!
We did a contact in the street with a guy this week named João Batista (John the Baptist). It was cool, I was tryin to be funny and told him congrats on baptising Jesus! Then, we learned that he didn’t even know that John the Baptist baptised Jesus! ha. So we had a good conversation with him, wrote down his address, and he thought it was cool when he learned that he is named after the man that baptised Jesus. lol
We also found this incredible family that we are meeting with again tonight!!!! Francisco, Valdete, and their 5 yr old daughter Yasmine. We had just left a members house the other day and we decided to knock on a door of someone we had talked to earlier in the week. As we walked to the house we passed by a man that was outside cleanin his house. We just said "Boa Tarde" and kept on walkin. After we knocked on the door of the house (no one answered), I looked back and saw the man again down the street, still cleanin his house. I felt really strong, go talk to him! But for some reason I felt nervous! and I haven’t felt nervous since my days in Santo Antonio about talkin with people in the street. it was a weird feeling and a bunch of excuses came to my head. But we went back to talk with him! and I’m so grateful that we did!!! Lookin back, I realize it was the adversary that was tryin to get us not to go back and talk with him. He is a way cool guy and invited us in right away to drink some water and eat a snack!! We became friends right off the bat and broke the ice really easy. He thought what we do is awesome, how we leave our country and our family to help others. After about 15 minutes of getting to know each other, we asked them if we could share a very special message with him and his family! they accepted and we taught them the Restoration!! It was awesome!! Talk bout a perfect lesson. the spirit was so strong, and we taught in perfect union, me and Fernandez. After we taught of the Book of Mormon, they both agreed to read it and pray. They are catholic, and Valdete´s response was awesome. She said how she didn’t understand the importance of getting baptised again right now, but when she prays about the message and the Book of Mormon and receives an answer, she hopes the Lord will change her heart and she will want to!! They are an awesome family and we are excited to go back tonight!!!
There are so many great things that happen every week, that could take all day writing about!! But know that I love y'all and that I know this work to be true!!!!
|At Neymar jr. house :)|
|The forest that we went to for the Churrasco, about 5 minutes from Itapoã.|
|Look closely, that's an ostrich on the left above the truck.|
|Elder Fernandez, Augusto and I at the church in Paranoá for the baptism on Sunday.|