I am not dead lol Sorry I didn’t send a letter last week, because I didn’t have p-day last week! But the lord answers prayers and today is p-day!
Well it is official! I am in RIO! I touched down the 21st after an hour long flight from São Pualo! I had a window seat and a perfect view of the Cristo Redentor when we circled it in the plane! Wow, so cool, I am excited to visit it someday! well we got off the plane met the president, took pictures and went to the house of the mission president. Wow, the Mission President has an amazing view from his house! We could see the Cristo and the bay. It was Breath taking! After an amazing lunch with the president we went and met our first companions in the field. Elder Motta is pretty cool, he is from São pualo and is also our District Leader! Well after meeting up with our companions, Elder Motta and I embarked on a 4 hour journey to our area, a little town called Cascatinha (I included a picture of a view of the city). I have to tell you about the public transport in Brasil, the busses are essentially the Indiana Jones ride, except instead of falling boulders or snakes we have the crazy drivers in Brazil. The traffic and the drivers here are crazier than Utah or California if that can be believed!
Well Cascatinha is pretty cool, its so green and is actually kinda cold! which is a blessing! And the People here have thick accents. I was thoroughly humbled this past week because people talk so fast with strong accents and I cannot understand anything! If it weren’t for Elder Motta I would probably die. The language barrier is frustrating! People will be talking and unless it is about faith, I don’t have any idea what is going on! But there is something to be said about simple language. I feel at times the only thing I can do is bear a simple testimony of Christ or of our message, but I feel such a great spirit when I do so.
I feel like Moses, limited by my language. But I have faith that the Lord will strengthen my capacities and in time and through prayer and work, I will speak Portuguese fluently!
The lord will prepare a way for us to do what he wants us to do! (1 Ne. 3:7)
Until next week!
A Fé é Tudo!!
Well my experience here at the CTM is coming to a close! And now we are officially the BIG DISTRICT in the CTM! what does that mean? Absolutely nothing! lol But it is fun to find a little thing to brag about here haha!
Well I just want to Jump right into the big experience of the week (which is really saying something because usually all of the weeks kind of blur together!). We went contacting yesterday! Contacting for Missionaries in the CTM is just handing out Book of Mormons in the surrounding area of the CTM, and however simple it sounds, It was actually pretty difficult! Two Americans who have BOTH been in Brazil for less than 2 months trying to have conversations with whoever on the street, sounds like an amazing Idea, huh? But it was the highlight of my experience so far! I will admit that the first 20 minutes we just kind of dragged our feet around the city, but after praying and asking God to bless me with courage and success, we decided to do something crazy and attempt a conversation. We talked to a man on the street corner and started trying to converse with him. We explained that we were missionaries who were new to Brazil but wanted to Share with him a message from the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. He immediately recognized that we were Americans so he started to speak English, BUT however tempting it was, I kept speaking Portuguese and after about 2 sentenced he returned to speaking Portuguese. He said that he had a great admiration for our church and had some good friends who were mormons, but he really didnt know a lot about the church. He also explained that he had a son serving in the US Navy and more family that lives in Texas where he was born. We explained that we also were from the US and explained about the Book of Mormon and gave him one with 3 Nephi 11 marked and asked him if he would read it and he said he would! I felt like a Million dollars! I felt like I had just converted all of Brasil in 1 contact! And I felt so thankful that the Lord answers our prayers exactly when we need his help! The next 3 Book of Mormons that we passed out were pretty easy, and I continued to gain courage in the Lord’s help for us. We went back to our teacher and asked if we could have another Book of Mormon to pass out. And for some reason, that Book of Mormon was stuck in our hands for about 45 minutes until we had to return to the CTM. I was a little frustrated that we couldn’t get our last book to someone, but I remembered the awesome experiences of the day and ended the day feeling amazing! And that the Lord was definitely with us! At times we were terrified, but once we opened our mouths they were filled!
The Gospel is SO cool, I am so thankful to be able to preach His word! Next time you hear from me I will be in Rio de Janeiro and no longer a teenager! That is CRAZY! Time has truly flown! I love you all and thank you for your prayers for me! I feel your support always!
A fé é tudo!!!
Com a ajuda do Evangehlo de Jesus Cristo, tudo é Bem!
Eu estou muito animado por meu dia de preparação! Sou muito grato pelas cartas que eu recebiu durante esta ultima semana! A fé é tudo!
We always start off our P-days with a trip to the Temple de São Pualo and today we ran into a lot of missionaries from the São Pualo Norte mission as we were leaving the temple! It is easy to see how your view of things directly affects how much you enjoy your mission! And I am making a goal to enjoy every minute that I can! A lot of missionaries say that the first months of the mission stink because of the language barrier, but after you “get past” those months you start enjoying your mission. Well I thought to myself I cannot afford to think like that. I can’t wait to “get past” the 6 month mark to be happy because I have only 2 years to serve the Lord and if things are tough, then its time to get to work and enjoy the rough spots as much as I can!
In the third chapter of the first Nephi, Nephi is given a pretty big challenge to retrieve the Brass plates, and it is too easy to see from that story how faith in the lord can affect your view of things. Nephi’s brothers had the view of this is tough and to their eyes impossible and so they complained and most likely were miserable their entire journey. Nephi had the view of its going to be tough, but the Lord has my back, and so it is time to get to work!
Life is full of times when we have to choose how to look at difficult decisions and decide whether we will be like Laman and Lemuel or be be like Nephi. I know that when we trust in the Lord, He will let us know that he “has our back.” I am so grateful to be here! I am so happy and feel so blessed to have this amazing opportunity to serve in Brazil! I want to be like Nephi and not let any time go to waste! Whether or not you are happy is a decision that you have to make! I love the song “There is Sunshine in my Soul Today!” I love singing it to myself when I feel discouraged or exhausted, because I know in whom I have trusted!
The Lord loves us, and wants us to grab onto his arm when we need his help! May we recognize his hand in our lives!
I love you all! Até mais!
A fé é tudo!