Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Serving With My Twin!

Week of April 18-24, 2016
(18) SEGUNDA (Monday):  Today was my last day in Sao Luiz Gonzaga.  It was a great p-day, all I bought for the week was a new bar of soap, just in case the house in Cruz Alta doesn’t have any.  Everything is packed.
            So Luis, the returning member, called us this morning and asked us to pass by because he had someone who was interested in baptism.  We passed, and it was his 10 year old grand daughter.  She went to church with them yesterday, and I didn’t even see her.  It was the first time she had ever gone to church and she really liked it.  We taught her the restoration, simplified, and she understood very well.  When we asked her if she’d already seen the Book of Mormon, she said, “yes!  We read it in church yesterday.  Alma, chapter 9, about Alma and Muleque.”  She’s definitely going to be baptized, in about 2 weeks, hopefully.
            I feel like I did a good work here.  We don’t have a lot of results to show, but I feel like I gave my best.  I look at Claudia and Marco and know that I was used to touch their lives, and even if that’s all the good I did here I’m satisfied.  I think of all the people that came so close, then decided no.  I walked these streets everyday for almost 5 months, and I know I gave all I had and the Lord accepts my efforts.  Now, it’s time to improve and move to the next.  Today was day 286 of my mission.
(19)TERCA (Tuesday):  So, you’ll see in the picture I’ll send, why today we got called twins.  

Elder Bezerra, with 3 transfers in the mission.  He is a great guy and I’m excited to work with him. He is from up north of Brazil. And this area is GREAT!  We are going to have a lot of success here.  We stopped by the seminary class and the soccer after, and there are more non-member youth then member,  at least 20 young men playing soccer.  There is a ton that goes on in the church, very different from Sao Luiz Gonzaga.
            Elder Bezerra is very humble, from a humble family, but he wants to work hard.  He seems great and it will be cool to learn with him.  His last comp, I’m seeing, which was his first, didn’t teach him very well, so I’ll have to show him more of how to do a few things.  But, he said right out, “I know I wasn’t trained very well, so whenever I do something wrong, just tell me.”  They have a small teaching group, but many of them go to church and it seems like they just lack the invite to be baptized.  It’ll be good here.  I’m excited to work here.  And the house is much better here, it actually had windows that open to the outside, and not the laundry room of the neighbors.  Today is day 287 of my mission.
(20)QUARTA (Wednesday):  Minha Nossa, this area is incredible.  4 lessons today that weren’t with less actives, of these 4, 3 of them ASKED for baptism. The 4th is 14 years old and excited and we marked a date with him and we’ll talk with his family.
            First, it was Simara.  Her son is Tiago, who was baptized recently.  When she saw the change in his life, she wanted to learn more.  Now, she’s anxious to be baptized as well, but she’s going to wit until after May 30th because that’s when Tiago turns 16 and she wants him to baptize her.
            Second, Graciele.  Her brother in law who is 16 was baptized last month, and then she met the missionaries now she also is anxious for baptism, but she’ll wait until January because she isn’t married, and they want to be married in January.
            Then it was Mateus, who is 14.  His older brother Samuel who has 16 years was baptized in January.  Mateus wasn’t only because his mom wanted him to actually want to be baptized and not just follow Samuel.   They’re awesome rapazes.  When I met Samuel yesterday t eh first thing he said was, “Hey, I’m Samuel.  I'm preparing to also serve a mission.”  He’s a member for less then 3 months.
            Then we went to the Elders Quorum President’s house, because his parents who are very old aren’t baptized.  The woman, after the message on eternal families, said, “I’m just here thinking when will be our baptism?”  So, we marked the 30th of this month.
            It’s a very small teaching group here, these 4 and 2 more.  But the other 2, elder Bezerra said they are of similar interest.  So, we’ll start working to grow the teaching group.
            Tomorrow there’s a talent sow, and everyone is super excited for it. also, I think I’m going to get very fat here.  3 of the houses we went to, they gave us food, and the others offered.
            Also, about the house, the knob to turn on the shower is metal, and in some place a live wire is touching it, so when you go to take a shower, you get shocked.  I tried to just be a man and grab it to turn on the water, but I can’t move my arm when I touch it!  Ha-ha.  So, I have to grab a towel and turn it on.  Today was day 288 of my mission.
(21)QUINTA (Thursday):  So, today was a talent show in the ward, with a dance after.  I haven’t seen so many youth together since I left Utah.  This activity was AWESOME!  And the young men’s leader said anyone who brings an investigator who performs wil get 75% of the trip to the temple paid.  Minha Nossa, it was awesome.  It’s been a year and a little since an American missionary passed through, so everyone is very excited.  There’s so much activity in this ward and so many people that invite friends that I think an English class would be perfect.  I’ll talk to Bishop and we’ll make a plan.
            We passed by the house of Felipe today.  He’s 16 and this was the missionaries 2nd visit.  He said he’s been praying a lot and is feeling very good.  He asked for a Book of Mormon and we explained it all to him.  He’s an awesome young man.  He asked if we could pass by again tomorrow.  Woot Woot!!
            I’m working hard to memorize the 25 scriptures from Sister Parrela.  I really want the certificate and the rock before they leave!  I’m very happy.  Today was day 289 of my mission.
(22)SEXTA (Friday):  Today, right after lunch, a muddy dog decided to hug me.  Then we had the rest of the day to go, and I had a muddy shirt, but it’s all tranquil.
            So, something hilarious that happened today, for 2 days when we went ot visit Samuel and Mateus, we called for Adilson, a recent convert, to see if he wanted to go with us.  Elder Bezerra called the wrong Adilson in the contact, and called an ancient investigator from other Elders.  Today, we were walking and I saw a blue house with the door open. I always knock the blue houses, and this time I felt like we needed to.  We knock, the guy comes right out, opens the gate, and we enter.  We sit down and start talking, and he says “Was it you guys that called me the other day?”  I had no idea and Elder Bezerra, in the hour, recognized his voice. It was this same Adilson he had accidently called.  He is super, super legal.  The other elders passed by his house a whole lot, but they never marked a part of the Book of Mormon for him to read.  He has a wife and a little 2 year old daughter named Valenticia.
            To be honest, I am loving this area.  I’m excited for Sunday to meet all the members.  I’m guessing that bishop will ask me in the hour to give a talk.  It’s all-good.  Today was day 290 of my mission.
(23) SABADO (Saturday):  Today was good.  Lots of rain in the morning, then a lot of sun in the afternoon.
            We had a few good lessons today, and I think we’re going to have a lot of people at church tomorrow.
            One less active that’s returning said today about how much his life changed because of the missionaries. I’ve had many people say stuff like that for us.  They see the missionaries as hero’s, the people who brought the truth of the gospel to their lives.  I hadn’t’ really noticed how much the missionaries mean to some people.  It makes me uncomfortable, really.
            Also, the showerhead broke, so it no longer heats the water and its’ winter here.  I always forget that if you touch the knob you’ll get shocked.  I touched it like 5 times.  Today was day 291 of my mission.
(24) DOMINGO (Sunday):  WOOT WOOT!  I love Sundays!  Today went very good.  Lot’s of rain, but I love the rain.  And I figured out why the showerhead wasn’t working.  It’s because my comp turned off the breaker switch!  He takes cold showers anyways, so he didn’t even notice.  Church was awesome today.  And we marked a lot of commitments for this week.
            This week went very well.  Lots of good lessons and good people.  I’m loving this area, and Elder Bezerra is awesome.
 Life’s good. All is well.  Tudo na paz.  Today was day 292 of my mission.
Until next week.  Love you all, Elder McKee
Our apartment is on the second floor so this is our view over all the buildings.
 Living Room.  There are only the 2 of us in the house.  

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