Tuesday 21/2 -
Today, my companion and I divided with the District Leader, Elder Alfaro, and his companion, Elder Martins. I went with Elder Martins in his area, he and I are good friends already so I was excited to spend the day with him. For lunch, he made ham and egg breakfast tacos which were good. Then we went out and did some street contacting. They have a small sand dune in their area, so he took me there and we hiked to the top and watched the sun set, but I forgot my camera. We talked a lot and he really opened up about his life before the mission and what not. Then we went to take açaí for dinner. Side note - their house is like the best missionary house I have seen in the mission and I am super jealous of them.
Wednesday 22/2 -
We woke up and Elder Martins made fried bananas. You fry bananas in oil, put on a plate, and top with sugar, powdered milk, powdered chocolate, and sweetened condensed milk. Super easy and super good. Then we returned to our areas.
Thursday 23/2 -
This morning, President and Sister Colleoni came over to our house to look at the place and tell us that we were going to move houses to live with two other elders in another zone. I am not too thrilled about this change, but the good thing is that the house is right next to our chapel.
Friday 24/2 -
We have to be careful in the streets at night and shouldn't stay out late because of the Carnaval parties. Everyone is drunk. We taught a boy named Gean that we met on the street the other day, and he invited his two older brothers, Mateus and Leandro to listen in on our first lesson, the Restoration. It went well and they all seemed interested. We committed them to church on Sunday, but who knows being that Carnaval is this weekend.
Sunday 26/2 -
They didn't come, in fact no one came except for a handful of people. I went to stay the night at the DL's house to spend the next day with them. The power was out in their area but we had a fun time playing Uno and other games.
Monday 27/2 -
Today, I stayed at the district leader's house last night and we are going to go on a tour of Natal and the beach and what not with a member.
We went to an activity at the church for Carnaval and we ate feijoada, rice, and barbeque. Then we went with a member to the beach which was really cool. We went to a place where the sand dunes met the water. I saw camels there and the view was just amazing, I think the beaches here are my favorite that I have been to. I was surprised that not a lot of people were there though. We went down near the shore and walked 3-4 miles down the coast. My favorite P-day yet. On the way there we passed a Carnaval parade while we were on the bus. It was like a mix between Mardi Gras and a San Francisco gay parade. I didn't realize it was so gross and dirty. Maybe there's a better part to it. There was a guy I met at the church activity that had a GoArmy key chain that made me look twice. It was weird seeing that here. I talked to him and he said he went on his mission to Idaho and he planned on joining the Army there in the states, but it didn’t work out for some reason. Thought that was pretty interesting.
Tuesday 28/2 - PARA BENS MAMÃE !!!!!!!
Nothing special really happened today except that I'm getting sick and Gean and Mateus weren't there for their appointment. Vai dar certo.
Wednesday 1/3 -
Today, we passed by Gean and Mateus again (Leandro doesn't live there) and we taught them the Plan of Salvation. Mateus shows more interest than Gean, but he is 3 years older than Gean at 15.
Thursday 2/3 -
Today, we went to visit a 13-year-old named Alan who just got back from the church youth camp. He liked it and wants to be baptized, in fact he has wanted to be baptized for quite some time. He has already been to church several times, but hasn't been taught. He leaves for a city near Mossoró next Tuesday, so we are working to get him baptized on Saturday. Today we taught him the Restoration, Plan of Salvation, and Gospel all at once and scheduled to teach the commandments tomorrow.
Friday 3/3 -
Today, we taught the commandments and filled out the membership/baptism document and got it signed by his mother. Now just an interview with the DL and the baptism tomorrow night.
Saturday 4/3 - PARA BENS KAELIN!!!!!!!!
Today, we received a call from the bishop and he told us that we can baptize Alan if we want, but he will not confirm him because Alan is leaving, and the bishop doesn't want another inactive member on the records. We plead his case and he said he would call us back. The other problem is that there is no church where Alan is going. Next, we got a call from the Mission President saying that for the sake of good relations between the ward and stake, he would not be authorizing this baptism. I wasn’t feeling well, so I returned to bed after personal study and got up in time to go out and work for the day that afternoon. We taught Mateus today (Gean lost interest) and committed him to baptism and church.
Sunday 5/3 -
Well, Mateus actually showed up and we had good meetings. In Sunday School, the teacher taught about gaining a testimony of the Book of Mormon, and shared a video of Elder Holland talking about it. I thought it was the perfect lesson for our investigator and he seemed really interested. We went to eat lunch and the member told me about an American who passed in this area who was a really good singer and had a band back in the states. I asked her more about it and she said that there’s like 12 members of the band and they wear blue. I was a bit confused and asked if there was a video of it on YouTube, and she pulled up a BYU Vocal Point video singing Silent Night. He is the first one singing. I thought that was pretty cool. We went home and I tried to catch up on sleep that I lost the previous night due to not feeling well, but it didn't come. Then we went to a meeting that ended up being cancelled and so we did some street contacts for the rest of the night. On one contact I presented the message of the Restoration and asked the lady if she would like to hear more about it this next coming week. She pulled up an empty chair next to her and told me to share it now, and so we did right there on the street (a lot of people just sit in front of their houses outside) and afterwards we set up an appointment to teach them the next one.
Monday 6/3 -
Today, we went to Alecrim so I could get a suit from another Elder who is leaving soon. I felt so sick that we just we went to the LAN house and stayed home the rest of the day.
I was pretty sick and couldn´t sleep that well this week and it was hard to find the energy to do anything. As a result, work was slow, especially with most of our appointments falling through. The only really good thing that happened was teaching this one family. The mom, Kayla, was baptized 23 years ago but is inactive. Last Sunday she had the sudden desire to return to church. She brought her 13-year-old son, Nathannael, and his cousin who is a member. We talked to her and set a day to teach Nathannael to baptize him. The day we went, we talked to the step-dad, Tiago, and had a good conversation with him. Throughout teaching the family, we found out that Tiago has a really strong testimony of the Book of Mormon and Restoration. By Saturday, we committed Nathannael for baptism for Sunday, Tiago for baptism after he gets married (people here aren´t usually married), and Kayla and Tiago will work on going to the temple. Saturday night when we were teaching about eternal marriage and families, Kayla became very emotional. She gave the closing prayer, and it was one of the most powerful and sincere prayers that I have felt. It was truly special. Friday night we went to the marriage of our WML at the chapel. It was boring but the food was good.
Sunday 12/3 -
The night before we had a conversation with the bishop over the phone and he almost blocked the baptism again. I decided we should open a fast for our work here and leave it in the Lord´s hands. I felt like everything was going to be ok, but my companion was up all night thinking about what he will say to the bishop the next day. Today, I brought my baptism clothes even though it was still up in the air. I sat down in the 1st block and the bishop came in and sat down next to me and said we will have the baptism like normal. My comp was very surprised. The baptism went very well (it only took one time this time), the whole family was there and once again the mom was very emotional.
Tomorrow is transfer day, I think I will be transferred but we will see.