Week of March 7-13, 2016
(7)SEGUNDA (Monday): Today was a good day. 5 boxes and 4 letters. Ha-ha, Man I am spoiled! All the elders here mandam um abraço and te agradecem pelo chocolate. (send a hug and thank you for the chocolate). I’m still not managing to send many pictures, but I’ll find a way. Elder Martins showed me some pictures he got from his girlfriend, who is visiting Moab. I miss that place.
So, one lesson today, this woman kept trying to bible bash. She would argue with everything. Then she asked us if we believe in reincarnation. I said, “No, we believe in what the bible says that we will resurrect.” Her: “Where does it say that in the bible?” Me: “ Corinthians 15” Her: “Let’s go, show me.” Then I read Corinthians 15:12-22, then said, “We believe and know that Christ resurrected, and that because of this we will also resurrect.” She looked at me, and then said, “Oh, here’s my dog. Lots of people have allergies around him. Are you guys feeling anything?” Ha-ha-ha, immediately changed the topic. After the lesson, my comp said, “Elder McKee, you DESTROYED that bible bash!” Me: “really? Did I burn her too much?” Him: “Read the passage again.” So, I did and now I saw the parts of, “If you don’t believe your faith is vain.” And “Ye are yet in your sins.’ Maybe it was a little strong, but I don’t like to bible bash. Today was day 244 of my mission.
(8) TERCA (Tuesday): Today I did my first baptism interview, with Rodrigo. He is a great example of how the Lord prepares people before they even meet the missionaries. The interview was very spiritual and he really opened up to me.
Then we found a new investigator named Maria, and it was a very good lesson. I’m trying to better my love and compassion for people. That’s the Christ like characteristic that I’m working on. In this lesson I focused on that a lot. The lesson on the restoration went very well. Right at the beginning she asked, “Why are there so many different churches when there is only one God?” Ha-ha, which is exactly what we talk about! She liked the message and the church a lot. She became very impressed that nobody in the church is paid. Also, I got my glasses today. It’s like a whole new world!! Today is day 245 of my mission.
(9) QUARTA (Wednesday): An entire day of rain…with a lesson with Stefani. She didn’t go to church Sunday because she was sleeping…But Fabio the member who invited them the first time, stopped by and talked with them and gave them 2 movies, ‘The Mountain of the Lord’ and ‘Joy to the World’. Why can’t all members do this!? He is so involved and helpful in the missionary world. But she already went to the place, I don’t know how to say in English, to do the marriage papers, and is trying to figure it out. They’re humble, marriage is expensive, and unfortunately, Missionaries can’t help them pay. But it’s good that she’s giving her effort, the Lord will recognize that and give her many blessings. We explained temples to her, because she had watched the ‘Mountain of the Lord’ that Fabio left her. She LOVED the idea of baptisms for the dead, then asked about the temple marriage. She is very good. I’m praying a lot for her.
Also, something that just came to mind today was Joci’s last day in the mission. She flies home tomorrow. Man, that’s INSANE! I wish I could see how much she’s changed. For sure, she’s not the same girl who left Utah, but I’m sure she’s still Joci. Man, it’s so exciting. Now, she’ll start real life, the next mission. School, work, money, rent, homework, and I’ll bet she’s married in a year. Ha-ha, man I’m excited for her. Today was day 246 of my mission.
(10) QUINTA (Thursday): Transfers came today. Us 4 will be staying. WOOT WOOT! My son won’t have a stepfather!
Today we went to the neighborhood called Floresta, which means what it sounds like. I t’s the more humble part of the city, but we don’t go there much because of a few things. 1) The streets have no patterns so it’s easy to get lost. 2) It’s where all the drug problems originate. 3) I won’t share because mom reads this. But we don’t ever go at night. But today we went exploring and found a ton of lessons. The missionaries have never, or rarely gone there, so it’s all un-minded gold. I want to do more hunting there, but it’s best to leave and go back to the other neighborhoods before 6-7 pm.
Ha-ha, here’s a funny conversation from today:
Us: “Hello, we are missionaries from the Church of Jesus Cristo”
Us: “Do you frequent a church?” (That sounds strange in English, the way I wrote it.)
Her: “No, I’m just Catholic. Want to enter?”
Ha-ha, I don’t have a church, I’m just catholic. I thought it was funny. But today went very good. I’m super happy and excited for tomorrow, also, the baptism on Saturday. WOOT WOOT! Today was day 247 of my mission.
(11) SEXTA (Friday): Today was a good day, a really good day. I was happy all day. Until I looked in the mirror at night, and realized I have love handles now. That’s not ok. Ha-ha, I’ll be upping my exercises. Then we bought pizza and I realized my problem. Ha-ha
One old man today, we knocked, he came and he had a watermelon in his hand, a big ol’ knife, and was cutting pieces and eating. All he said, “Enter”, then left. So, we went in and sat with him. Talked with him a little. It was obvious he has no interest in religion, so I went to just share a scripture with him. I said, “Irmao, can we share a scripture with you?” “No” “Sir, you don’t want to hear a word from God’s book?” “No, I’m a nervous person.” Still eating his watermelon with juice everywhere. Ha-ha, so we thanked him for his time and left.
Today we walked in heavy rain, then after in heavy sun. But I was feeling very happy. I’ve come to love walking. Also, my glasses go darker in the sun, which is cool, and also something that makes me happy.
Jake and Elder Martins
Today Elder Santos Melo called me, and said, “Tche! You have 9 months in the mission!! Ahhh, wow it’s passed superfast. I think he had grabbed a paper and counted it all out for me, because he said, “Look, by weeks or transfers, you have 9 months. By month, you have 8 months.” He’s going to another area, so I’ll see him at the zone conference. Today was day 248 of my mission.
(12) SABADO (Saturday): WOOT WOOT! Rodrigo is baptized! And we had an incredible lesson with Juliano and Stefani. It was the first time we’ve managed to get them both in house. Juliano had a lot of questions, and we were able to guide him to all the answers. He’s gone to church just one time. He asked me at one point, “Stefani and I aren’t married. Does this please God?” I thought for a second of how to answer and I just said, “No, he wants that you both be married.” Juliano said, “I know. The other preacher that baptized me said to just be baptized and the rest will follow. “ He kept talking about his baptism in that church, and with time he seemed to come to learn it wasn’t valid. He had so many questions! And they were questions inspired! He opened to 2 Corinthians 12:2 and asked “What is this third heaven?” So we explained, using many other scriptures, the plan of salvation. He marked every Quarta and Sebado for us to return to study with him. He said, “I want that you guys create a plan for me and leave stuff with me to read for the next lesson.” He said he wants to learn more about the Book of Mormon. It was a very good lesson.
And the baptism! Rodrigo came in church clothes! He was so excited! Then, during the beginning meeting, the LMA from the front signaled that he forgot to turn off the water filling the font. We went running down, the water in the hallway. So, we had to pull the plug, then clean the hall, then figure out a way to get the plug back in. We managed to get it in with a broomstick. And Stefani went to the baptism, too. She loved it. She really wants to be baptized, and now Juliano is showing real interest. AHHH! I want to baptize them! They have a little daughter with 4 years. Her name is Thifany. We are super excited about them. Today was day 249 of my mission.
Elder Martins, Elder Pessoa De Silva, Rodrigo, Elder Alvarenga, Jake
'Our convert teaching our investigator how to tie a tie.'
(13) DOMINGO (Sunday): Juiano and Stefani went to church! And they loved it!! WOOT WOOT! Everything we covered today in the classes were the same discussions we have in our lessons with him yesterday, so it helped him clarify that more. Welerson didn’t go and neither did Vinicius. We aren’t sure what happened with Welerson. This week was harder for Welerson, I think. I don’t really know, because we didn’t talk to him once. He isn’t answering his phone and the 5 times we passed by his house had nobody home. I talked to the ward mission leader, and he´ll find someone to talk to him through Facebook or something to invite him to soccer. I’m really praying hard for him.
This week was a slower one, but we had good lessons. Juliano and Stefani show a lot of potential. They are talking of marriage, and Stefani really wants to be baptized.
One of those points is to better is my exercises. Man, I’m getting fat. Ha-ha, not good. Today was day 250 of my mission.
OH! So listen to this. My comp said that last night I was talking in my sleep, about baptisms. In PORTUGUESE!!! I’ve already dreamed in Portuguese, but now I’m sleep talking in Portuguese! Woot Woot!!!!
I love you guys!!! Today I tried to pray in English, and the two Brazilians here that kind of speak English were laughing at my English.... Mother’s day will be an adventure!