Pictures: 1-Dinner & World Cup celebration at Crisiani’s.
2-After cutting some wood logs Elder Cotrim and I had a fight. I won!
All right, so I don’t have too much time, but this week went very good and was very crazy as well. We have seen some great miracles together. Elder Cotrim and I are doing great together and are working super hard. We had a ton of lessons this week, more than usual, and 7 investigators visited church with us! They are all progressing very well and we continue to find people wanting to be baptized. The work is going so well that the time is flying by! Thank goodness I have my journal up to date so I can remember all of these amazing experiences. I wish I could share everything with you guys, but there is no way I have enough time to write everything I want to.
First thing that happen, which was super cool was at lunch Tuesday we ate with Lisandra and her Mom and Grandpa. The lunch went super good! So a little about Lisandra, she is super strong in the church and has a baby daughter only a few months old and a son, who is a handful for her, who is 6 years old. Her husband cheated on her and left her about 4 months ago leaving her and the family alone. During all of this she stayed strong in the church and could hardly tell she was sad. After lunch she opened up to my companion and me and she cried a lot. It was so sad...I couldn’t imagine being in her position. Her family is beautiful. How could this guy do this to her? She told us that he has been returning everyday asking for forgiveness and permission to return. Lisandra has stayed strong during all of this and said at times he sits on the couch and just cries and she leaves to another room. She has been reading the book "Miracle of Forgiveness." She said she has forgiven him and doesn´t know exactly what to do. She wanted help from us. We, teenage kids, being a little shocked with all this, tried helping her the best we could and told her she needed to receive counsel from President Alisson. She agreed and wants to talk with him. This was a great testimony builder and really touched me of how strong of a woman she is. She told us of her testimony and I know it is because of this testimony she is so strong! What great faith she has to forgive her husband for doing this to her...I can´t imagine what I would do if my wife did this to me. I was also touched by the confidence she had in us 2 missionaries. She was so grateful for our help and told us of the different spirit she feels around us. She told us that we are different from other missionaries. This also shocked me a bit.
During the whole week we had experiences where many members, less actives, and investigators open their hearts to us and tell us that they feel very comfortable with us and trust us.
This week wasn´t exhausting physical it was exhausting spiritual! I don’t think I have cried more in one week than during this week. We had moments where the spirit was so strong. This Spirit has helped so many people resolve problems, doubts, and concerns. I am so grateful for the spirit that is with Elder Cotrim and me.
Another experience that wasn´t the best was when we visited the big family. So their baptism was scheduled for the 28th of this month, but now things are difficult. So we arrived there and talked about the baptism and everything was cute and ready to go. We talked about the interview and the 4 kids said they were ready. We talked about the papers that needed to be signed for their baptism and everything was calm until Silvia returned to the room and said, “NO, I will not sign it!” When she said this the spirit left and the look in her eyes was evil. I don’t know what is happening with the parents, but they are seeking bad spirits...They wont even pray with us anymore. They were so elect 2 weeks ago, had an answer that this church was true and everything, but now they rejected the answers Heavenly Father gave to them. Ari said, "If she won’t sign it, I won’t either!" Elder Cotrim and I kept calm and explained the importance of their authority in their baptism. We explained again that this baptism is valid here on earth and in heaven, and that no other church had the authority to baptize. This is when Ari went crazy. He started yelling to us that we are lying and that God would never only have one church with the priesthood authority and that we can´t say this to them. I explained to him that this is what we believe; we have received answers from God that these things are true and we are not lying. He stayed very prideful and was very difficult after this. We shared our testimonies and left them. I had a bad feeling in my stomach after this, felt like throwing up...How can someone receive the truth and then reject it like this? The 4 kids were super sad during all of this and they all were crying. They want to be baptized, but they think it is too early and they need to wait longer.
We are praying a ton for them and will return there and see if they will humble themselves and receive the promptings of the spirit.
Sunday the 3 kids visited church as well as Thalini, with a date of baptism, and Maria, who will be baptized the 28th. Church went very well and I had the chance to give a talk on members and missionaries! I felt really good about it and hope the members will be better member missionaries!
This work is tough, but elder Cotrim and I keep smiling all day long! I am so grateful for this mission I get to be part of. This church is true and the work of the Lord is progressing!
Mom, I know you love me and I LOVE you! :) Awesome to hear about the family. I miss those lunches with the Jones family. Ha-ha! Mom the one thing I have learned above everything is how to Love. I know now that Love is the greatest commandment and I have seen this Love grow in me a lot in the past year and months. I really feel like the Lord has been shaping me into the man I need to be. I feel like He trusts me to follow those promptings of the spirit always. I believe through this is how I have been so blessed in this work. Really anyone can be a missionary, just requires obedience to God and Love for others. If someone doesn´t has the opportunity to serve a mission you can very well find these talents there in home. These talents can be found in all places and all moments. I love you so much Mom! I can´t wait to have more time with you to share my experiences.
Dad, the World Cup is crazy here. During the games we can´t teach...it is impossible! President Parrela counseled that during the games we return home and study. Surprisingly the work isn´t being affected too much! I love the pictures you sent, ha-ha! I love you Dad! I have so many things to share with you!
I love you FAMILY!!