Sorry I didn't have time to respond yesterday, we had our zone meeting in the morning and then zone p-day and then a family night at night with some less actives which was very good and also it was a holiday so the usual lan-house was closed. but I'm on now!
Tercio and his friend that gave us the referral and his friend's entire family (who is actually from Taubaté so it was cool to see all of them again :) One of the young men said that he liked it when I was there and that I stayed there for very little time. It's good to feel missed)
I'm a grandpa!! E Mikulecky is a trainer now!
Dad, one of my favorite scriptures about obedience is Mosiah 2:41 and it talks very clearly about the blessings. With youth, obedience to the commandments can be a bit hard, it’s true, but I know that you'll find a good way to help them understand why they should be obedient.
"Dad and I were going to go to San Antonio on Friday and spend the night and see the Alamo and the Riverwalk, and then go to the game on Saturday, but Dad hasn’t been feeling well all week and we thought it would be better to do the minimum. I think it was a good call"
That reminded me of a talk that I'd heard recently by President Eyring in the General Conference talk a year ago in October in 2013 when he was talking about his parents and how they were very different and how his dad Loved Chemistry and his mom loved art and what not and that sometimes he forgot things that were important to her. Elder Eyring said something like "it would've been better if the Holy Ghost had reminded him of his promise to his wife made years ago but at least he let the Holy Ghost soften his heart so that the decision to fulfill her promise was his and that it wasn't a sacrifice to him" What you said in your letter reminded me of that talk and I'm just really grateful that have such good parents that have such a good relationship and that love each other so much that they are practically one in their desires and wishes and sacrifices that would've been very difficult become easy for you guys. so Thanks :) You guys are well on your way for a very successful celestial marriage and partnership with even greater responsibilities. You guys are good examples for me.
"We saw Jamal William’s mother and she had on tennis shoes that had 6 inch spike heels!! I should have taken a picture! That might have been rude, so I didn’t."
That's why you gotta walk around with a secret spy pen mom! :) or maybe just use your phone and make it look like your texting. Just make sure you don't have the flash on and that your camera doesn't make a sound
Do you remember the Zirkles? They’re going on a mission to San Antonio Texas! Also, their daughter, Kelsey, is returning from her mission soon. I think right before they leave for their mission! Their son, Tanner, is in Paris on his mission too.
Yeah I remember the Zirkles, that's cool!
I hope you got my notes about what a successful missionary is.
I did, thank you, that helped me a lot to get my focus again. It's interesting too because we read the same list from preach my gospel yesterday in the zone meeting.
How was your week?
The week was cool, I liked it. Leoson, our ward mission leader, said that the air in the branch is changing for the better. and Alexandre, the second counselor, said that he's seeing a positive influence in the attendence of members at church which we're also seeing. It's good to be part of a difference. With just 10 or so more people, our branch can turn into a ward.
Tercio was baptized this last week! It was really cool
I bought a silver ring to go on my ring finger! To fight off the snakes. I don't know if I ever told you guys, but once, a woman asked me to marry her and sooo it's a precaution. "Sorry, I'm engaged..." it was 2 reais, a little less than a dollar
Leoson, our branch mission leader. When I got here, the other elders were complaining about him, that he doesn't do anything and that he's good for nothing else but give car rides. Well that was true before I got here but I got to know him and I came to see that he had great desires and faith and a great testimony, he just needed some motivation and someone to follow up with him. So these weeks and months i've been following up with him and working with him and we've managed to have a missionary meeting every week which but I've always had to call him and confirm with him and he usually showed up late but this last sunday, he showed up on Time without me having to call him! So that's some solid progress for me and I'm happy :)
We got a reference from Leoson and we went there and while we were talking with her (Vilma), her cousin called and Vilma said she was with "the elders" and her cousin was like "from what church?"..."Oh that's my church! Let me talk to them" I talked with her cousin and she told me "Elder, I was praying a lot yesterday at night that God would help my cousin. You are an answer to my prayers. Help her" so that was interesting. We marked our next appointment and left a pamphlet and we'll visit her today, we'll see how it goes.
I had an interesting experience with my companion this last week. I was adjusting the wardrobe/closet and the bar that holds up the hangers fell. I went to put it back in place and it fell again and then Elder Rivera started to just laugh at me. I started to do it again, he continued to laugh. I found it very annoying. I was annoyed to the point where I took out his clothes and threw them on his bed and told him to do it himself and I put my clothes up on the bar and left. I wanted to be a bit alone so I left the apartment and walked outside like 5 steps and I was thinking. My first thoughts were of anger and being annoyed. "Why does he have to laugh at me. Does he not care about me? Does he not think I have feelings too? does he think I like getting laughed at?" But then I changed my thoughts "...why doesn't he care about me? Why doesn't he love me? Because I don't love him...what is love? Love is charity which is the pure love of Christ. What would Christ do? Well...he would go back, apologize and arrange his clothes in the closet again. Sooo with a prayer that's what I did. He was obviously annoyed too. He didn't accept my apology or my help but left the room. I decided to help anyways. I took out some of my clothes to give room for his and arranged all of his clothes in the closet and even made his bed and sweeped around it. Doing all that, we managed to continue normally throughout the day without having any bad feelings. When I was with Elder Cosme, I don't think I would've acted like this. I think I would've just stayed angry and fought with him some more. For this reason, I feel bad that I didn't do better with Elder Cosme and I wish I could go back and redo it...but at least I've learned from my mistakes and I'm getting better. I've learned now (it seems) to humble myself after the situation and to do what I need to to make it better...now I just need to learn to humble myself in and before the situation so that the bad feelings can be avoided altogether. Life really is a great learning process and it's all about just trying to become like Christ.
What kind of service did you give?
This last Saturday, we helped our branch mission leader to move his house and that was cool. I felt useful. I also helped destroy his cement path behind his new house which was a lot of fun :) This Saturday we're going to help another brother clean his yard....like with a hoe, take out the plants. Yards here are different.
Did anything funny happen to you recently?
We got a referral from some other missionaries. A member in their ward has a son in jail. This son was preaching the gospel in the prison and one of the other prisoners wanted his family to hear the same message. We got the information, went there. we clapped our hands at the gate and out came a person. I looked at the face...'I think it's a man' I looked at the body 'but it appears to be a woman?' the person spoke "Hi my name is Jessica" in a deep, gravely voice. 'ohhhhhhh crapppppp' he/she/it is a transvestite! I acted normally in the situation but man that was an awkward situation. I didn't know whether to say he or her. The person is also Macumbeiro....which is like voodoo or like black magic. Soooo we left a panphlet and said we'd try and return some other day to talk with another family member.
Did you get your spy pen order yet?
Yeah I did! I'm super excited too! Thanks for sending that! If all goes well, the money that I'll sell them for will go towards my Christmas money that you guys would’ve sent me so you guys won't need to send me anything for Christmas (not that I'll make a lot of profit but just because I'll sell it for about the same price that you guys spent buying it and sending it here.
Well, the time's running out. Thank you all for your love and support, especially you mom and dad. The church is true!
Washing the dishes of a sister.
Elder Gilliat was tired!
Tercio was baptized!