This is Rosari and her family. She lives in Porto B, but she makes our meal calendar. She noticed we didnt have lunch planned on Sunday, so she invited us over :) Unfortunately, she is moving in March :(
Dear Family and Friends,
This week was a good week. You want to know why? I am a missionary for the Lord's church, restored in its fullness in these latter days. Want to know why else? MY BIRTHDAY PACKAGE CAME IN!!! It came in on Tuesday. And I have already torn into it, eaten the Swedish Fish (shared a bit with my companion - you know you have developed Christ like love for someone if you share your Swedish Fish that you haven’t eaten in over 4 months) but the cake, candles and frosting are not to be touched until 2-23-15, when I turn 19 years old. YAYY! Thank you guys so much. My ties are envied, and my shirts were definitely needed. Summer is still hot, and long sleeves isn’t a fun option. Shoe polish, bleach pens, socks... everything came in and I’m happy.
Wanna know why else I’m happy? We're starting to see some success again. Our investigators are reading the Book of Mormon. Mariangelica and Gideão look like they are progressing nicely. They didn’t come to church, because Gideão had a MMA cage fighting match. We made a contact with Zaira, an old lady. She’s cool. We only taught her one lesson on Wednesday, when we contacted her, but we decided to drop by on Saturday to invite her to church. When we asked, she said "Sure, that’d be great, what time does it start?" "8:30 AM." "Great! See you then" I wanted to say "wait... what? Really? No... excuses, nothing? Sweet!" And so we went to church, and at first, she was a little uncomfortable, until Brenda ran up to her, gave her hugs and kisses, and accompanied her throughout church. At the end she said she liked it, and will wait for us to visit on Tuesday! AWESOME!
On Thursday, we had a mission conference. OKAY. First off, Wednesday before last, I got a call from the assistants. They wanted me to arrange a musical number for the Mission Conference. I am well known throughout the mission as the "Elder that sings well." So sometimes, I have to pay the consequences, lol like arranging all the men in our zone to sing in 3-part chorus. I was nervous, but when we had our practice 8 days ago, I felt... at home. In the MBHS choir room. I was doing my whole section leader thing, just in Portuguese with much less talented Brazilian missionaries. Nevertheless, through good practice, it sounded really good. I had a good time doing that.
So the mission conference. President and Sister Parrela introduced us to Elder Masagarte, 1st counselor in the Brasil Area Presidency (also a 70). Cool. So now our humble Brazilian male chorus singing "Brilham raios de clemência" (brightly beams our Father’s mercy) will now perform for one of the head guys of missionary work in all of Brasil. Our performance was awful. But I think the spirit was there, maybe. It was really good in our practices, though, so I’m proud of my work and of the missionaries in our zone. The conference was awesome. Elder Masagarte gave us some awesome tips, pointers, and a whole lot of doctrine. That man is smart. I learned a lot.
We are still working on contacting tudo mundo. We are doing everything in our power, creativity, and mental effort to find people to baptize. We talk with everyone. It’s getting easier to sort through the "bad" contacts, because when we step in the streets, the people who don’t want to hear us just run away. So the people who remain have a shot, or so we currently figure.
Ok, this is a funny story. I’m not sure if I talked about Lilian. We were walking on a hot summer day (that would be all of them, but on a particular day) Elder Molina and I were walking along the trilhos (railroad tracks) when a family stopped us and asked "would you like some water?". To a missionary, it sounds more like "would you like a free contact to a nice family to teach and baptize?" So clearly we accepted. Lilian wanted us to drop by the night before Elder Molina left, but time ran dry on that day, and I told Elder Molina that I would visit them with Elder Matoso.
Well, with my sense of observance and direction, that was more difficult than I thought. I knew it was a big yellow house with a big driveway, a pool, was on the trilhos, and close to Eder + Joyce. They seem very rich to the people here in Uruguaiana. There is only one set of tracks in our area. There was no way I could miss the house.
Well, some things don’t change. The house vanished. Like, completely. For 2 weeks, it vanished. We tried hard to find it, but for some reason, it just wasn’t there. Well, we finally found it on Wednesday. The reason I didn’t see the big yellow house with the big driveway and a pool was because there was a giant pink 10-foot concrete wall in front. Hmm. Somehow I completely forgot about the giant pink concrete wall. I was never too observant, but this is low, even for me. No man should be able to physically ignore that kind of landmark.
So she was happy to see us, and we marked a visit with her for yesterday. WELL. Her husband also marked a giant party for yesterday. So we show up, there is loud dance music, (I didn’t mind that part so much), Lilian is really mad at her husband, and everyone, minus Lilian, is completely sloshed. Hammered. But they wanted us to enter, so we decided if we have people that actually want to hear us, we would come in, leave a little lesson, get everyone’s address, and leave. Lesson learned - drunk people are completely useless to a missionary. Just... mark a different day and leave. So unfortunately, that did not go quite as planned. Nevertheless, we marked to show back up for Wednesday.
Alem disso, tudo joia aqui no Uruguaiana. Estou muito feliz. Meu companheiro é ótimo. (Other than that, everything is going great in Uruguaiana. I am very happy. My companion is awesome.)
Até mais, (Until Later,)