First off, some crazy things went down and our 2 baptisms fell through. One of them is gonna be this coming week and we have to figure out some other stuff so that Guilherme can be baptized before I go home.
So cool story. I was walking in the middle of nowhere after an appointment fell through and I had the crazy desire to eat chocolate. I then had a feeling to look behind me and guess what I saw? Yes. I saw A CHOCOLATE FACTORY. So I went in and we made friends with the people that work there. We bought some chocolate and they explained to me how they make it. And then they invited us back and they said they would give us a secret tour and show us around back. So we went back and they showed us how they make their chocolate. It was sweet....like chocolate. It's not everyday that you desire chocolate and a chocolate factory appears behind you.
We worked super hard this week, knocking on doors and talking with every. It was a crazy busy week, running after these baptisms and trying to find new people to teach. But it's crazy how the adversary works so hard to make sure people are miserable like he is. It just means that we have to work 10x harder to come out on top.
I love you all and I'll see ya'll in less than 4 weeks!!!!
Wow. Less than 5 weeks and you guys will be here in São Gabriel with me!!!! That's crazy!
So my companion arrived! Elder Richi Monahan from Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. He was waiting for his visa for 3 months in Boise Idaho, and just go to the mission!
We've been working hard to knock on a lot of doors and talk to everyone on the road. The lord has blessed us with so many families! Since I was with Elder Miller and Elder Barros, we had spent more time working in their area and we didn't have a lot of time spent in my area. Now that I have time to work in my area, Elder Monahan and I have been searching for a lot of new investigators. The other Elders had left only a few investigators, and we're going to baptized them this week, so we've been in the process of searching for new ones. We ended up knocking on a lot of doors, and 70% of the doors we knocked on, let us in! What a miracle! And they were mostly families, too! I'm so grateful that the Lord is giving us so many opportunities to teach so many families! The gospel really is for families and I'm grateful that I get to be the one that teaches it to them. So get ready for some miracle stories in these up coming weeks.
Also, last P-Day, we had to leave the Lan House really fast because President Parrela arrived in the city, and called us to do interviews. I talked with him about a lot of things, including school, marriage, work, my family, and all that stuff. It was AWESOME! I love my mission president! But he also told me that, since I'm here in São Gabriel on the 24th, when ya'll get here, you're going to have to come here instead of Santa Maria, and that I won't be able to leave São Gabriel until Sunday. So it'll be awesome here!
Anyways, I love you all and hope you all have an awesome week!.
First off, I would like to say HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO MY DEAREST MOTHER WHO I ABSOLUTELY ADORE. You are the best mom in the whole wide world (and there are approximately 2,300,000,000 moms in the world). So way to be the best mom ever! Happy birthday!!!!!!!
This week was fun, hard working, and colder than a gang of polar bears in Ray Bans. And yes, my new companion will arrive this Wednesday!
On Monday, we ate xis (which is like a Brazilian hamburger) and went back home and had a p-day full of rest and fun. At night, we went to teach Maria and Natalia. Maria is a women and Natalia is her daughter, and we're teaching them and preparing them for baptism on the 6th of June. They're kind of iffy but we're working hard so that they can realize the importance of the gospel. They said that they prayed and received an answer to their prayer, but it seems like there is something else holding them back that we're working hard to figure out.
On Tuesday, we had district meeting. I gave a training about the visions and goals that we need to have to reach our mission potential. It was fun and afterwards, we ate chocolate.
Wednesday, we worked hard. We visited Guilherme, who is the brother of Gabi. Gabi is a recent-convert of about 3 years, and recently received her mission call to serve in the Juiz de Fora Mission (which is where Jake Hamm is serving!). She's the only member in her family, and we're teaching her little brother who also will be baptized on the 27th of June. This week, we plan on trying to teach her mom and step dad who we haven't met yet.
On Thursday, it was super cold and we worked hard and visited a bunch of recent converts asking referrals, and we were also able to teach Felipe, our recent convert.
Friday and Saturday we did some awesome family nights, and made pancakes! We also passed at almost all of our investigators' houses to confirm going to church on Sunday.
Sunday, we visited recent-converts and some of our investigators and got a bunch of referrals!
The week was simple, but fun, and golly goodness, I am so grateful to be a missionary! This calling is amazing and I'm so grateful that I can be here to learn so many things. It seems like at the end of the mission, your learning rate increased 10x, and you learn so many things.
We had a little miracle this week! In our powerful trio of Elder Barros, Elder Miller, and Elder Hintze, we baptized a young man this week named Felipe. We had been planning his baptism ever since we got here, and it was all good, but in the last moment he ask he his friend's dad could baptism him. We said yes and he got excited. But when we asked his friend's dad if he could baptise him, he said that he would have to work and wouldn't be able to. When we told Felipe, he freaked out a little bit and that that the members didn't like him and that they didn't want him to be baptized so he said that he never wanted to baptized but that he still wanted us to visit him. This was 2 hours before the baptism. After a lot of prayer and running, we got a call from his friend's dad, and he said that he would be able to baptism him! The problem was that there was 1 hour until the baptism. So we grabbed a taxi and ran to his house and told him that he would be able to be baptized by his friend's dad! He freaked out (of happiness of course) and we took him to the baptism and it all worked out. We could have stressed out or freaked out, but I was relatively calm. It just goes to show that if you put it all in the Lord's hands and do all you can, everything works out the way it needs to.
So my companion's name is Elder Monahan from Pennsylvania, but he still hasn't arrived yet. He only gets here on the 17th. So I'll only be with him for a little bit of time before I return home. But I'm excited to begin the training with him and pass along some of the wisdom about the mission that I've learned while I've been here.
I love you all so much and I'm excited to see ya'll soon!!!!!
Oh and PARABENS FRANCESCA!!!! You're getting married! (WOOT WOOT)
So right now, I'm in a trio with Elder Miller and Elder Barros. This week was intense. So here in São Gabriel, there are 2 branches. In the last transfer there were 2 companionships in each branch, and the area of the branch was split, giving each companionship an area to work in. But in one of the branches, the sisters were transferred out, and now there are only elders. So along with working in the area of Elder Miller and Elder Barros, we have to open the sisters area, AND my area. So basically, we're working in 3/4ths of the city...and it's not too small. But it's way fun.
So I arrived here on Tuesday night, but Elder Miller and Elder Barros were in Santa Maria for the mission counsel, so when I arrived, I was the only Elder in São Gabriel. The Sisters took the keys to the house and my cell phone to the bus station, and gave them to me, and then I took a taxi to our house and I was there all alone for 5 hours waiting for the other Elders to arrive. It was weird being alone, holy moly. I cleaned the house, reorganized everything, unpacked my bags, and stuff like that. Then they arrived.
It's getting quite cold here, and we're all using sweaters and jackets. It's pretty scary when 3 guys in black jackets knock on your door to talk to you. But beyond this, we're working a whole lot. This whole week, we were just getting to know the city, and opening a bunch of the areas here. It's tiring but it's fun. We walk a lot. But it's all good. I'm just grateful to be here on a mission and be learning so many things. Every day, I learn so much. I wish I could send emails about everything that I learn and about all the experiences that I have, but the time is super limited. But just know that I love you all and I'm so grateful to be a member of the church of Jesus Christ!