A custom scripture cover made for Elder Lawrence
Well we got to talk a bit yesterday, so there isn’t a whole lot to say.
There was a lot of people traveling this week because of Mother´s Day. We are excited with a few people that we are teaching but we need to find a lot more to teach. Our teaching group is rather small.
My companion is Jamerson Williams Sousa from Capanema, Pará. He is going home in 5 weeks so we are only going to be companions for this transfer.
We are having transfers tomorrow and I am not sure if I will leave my area. I am thinking that they might close the area and leave just one companionship in the ward. This part of the year they generally have to close a lot of area becuase there are a lot of missionaries that finish their missions at this time and there aren’t a ton of missionaries getting here because of the visas. Not one American is coming this transfer and I don’t think any have gotten here for quite some time now.
Because I’m not sure where I will be I don’t know when I will get into Skype. I might be able to send you an email during the week combining the time. But I am thinking that it will be in the afternoon after church. But if I were transfered and we have meetings in the aftenoon, we would probably talk at night.
Geraldo Causse came to visit our mission and the Sao Paulo Interlagos mission. The conference was pretty cool. Him and his wife spoke and an area 70 as well. It was translated for those who didn’t know English. He would speak a bit then it would be translated. I imagine that it was a little bit annoying for the Brazilians, especailly when someone said something funny. All of the Americans would be laughing during the translation and then the Brazilians don’t understand everything. His wife talked about keeping our eyes on the Savior and Elder Causse talked about looking to the future.
Not a whole lot of things happened in our area. We had a few new people at church but that’s about it.
This area is called Jordanópolis and its in São Bernardo do Campo.
This week was a little slow. While we were able to find a few more people to teach getting people to church remains difficult.
My companion is going home next week too. He will have to do a surgery. He has 8 months on the mission and will probably come back to the mission in about 3 months. Understandably he´s pretty concerned, not about the surgery but about how it will be at home and to come back to the mission.
We had a conference last week, and something that a missionary said struck me. He said there is a song about missionaries in spanish and in the song it says that we as missionaries are sent to find our friends. Friends we made in the pre-existence and are waiting for us to bring them the Gospel. I really liked this perspective and I believe it is true as well.
I found out a young man that we baptised in Mauá, Vinicius is preparing for a mission. He already filled out his papers and is just waiting for the interviews. It is pretty cool to think how much his life has changed as a result of the Gospel.
Our week was pretty normal but we are pretty excited for this week. We have a pretty good group of people that we are teaching but we need to make the group a little larger. One young man, he´s 20, we are teaching, who is progressing a lot we are hoping to baptise this Sunday. His dad has helped us out a lot too. His dad lives in another mission but he came here over the weekend to make sure his son went to church. This young man is keeping all of the commitments, he has already read about half the Book of Mormon in about 2 weeks.
I´m teaching an english class again. It is a bit more enjoyable this time because I have a book to help structure the classes a little bit. Last time I didn’t have any materials to help me.
Congratulations Justin on making the golf team, that should be pretty fun.
Us with Lucas
Us, Lucas and his family
Lucas with his family
We had a baptism this week. His name is Lucas. We had baptized his brother two weeks ago. Lucas´s progress was very impressive – he really grew spiritual over the last few weeks and had a strong desire to be baptized. He even gave a testimony Sunday before he got baptized. Him and his brother did.
We are having a bit more success now, although we aren´t really ever satisfied with how much we are getting done. There is always more to be done.
Me and my companion are getting a long really well, and the time seems to be flying by.
With 3 other missionaries
The district last transfer
Transfers happened last Tuesday. I stayed in the area but my compaion left. My new companion is Elder Lins. He has been on the mission for about 7 months and we actually met eachother in the last zone I was in. He is a convert as well and the only member in his family. He is from Santa Catarina, Brazil. It is evident that when he was baptised he had to change a lot of his old habbits. It is incredible to see the change that the Gospel has in the lives of people.
I loved conference. It is always an amazing oppurtunity to learn. I am looking forward to getting the Ensign so I can study the talks in greater depth.
We started running this week so maybve I can get in better shape before getting home.
As I was reading the beginnning of the Book of Mormon this week I was thinking about the contrast between Nephi and Lamen and Lemuel. In conference they talked a bit about somethings I had noticed. Lamen and Lemuel passed through all the trials that Nephi passed through, but they didnt recieve the blessing because of how they passed through these trials. Perspective is everything. It is incredible to see how much a happy heart can change things even as we are being tried.
My companion and I with Henrique
My Easter Egg
We baptized a young kid named Henrique. He is a really sweet kid. He would have been baptised a long time ago but his parents didn´t give permission. We talked to their parents a bit and they then decided it was his decision and he decided to be baptised.
We worked really hard this week and it seemed like not a lot of things were happening but we were blessed by Henrique and we were happy it all worked out well.
I was thinking and I want to buy a motorcylce when I get back home but I am not sure how that would work out.
Transfers are tomorrow but we dont know if we are going to leave or not. I think we will oth stay but I am not too sure.
This week went fairly well. We were hoping to have a few more people at church but it went well.
We had a zone conference that made me think a lot. The mission president is trying to get the missionaries to be a lot bolder when dealing with people. This is something I need to improve in but I believe it will help me a lot in my mission and my life if I can get better at it.
We found some pretty cool families this week and are looking forward to working more with them this week.
This area is a lot difficult to be effective in the evening part of the day. Normally people are only home after 6pm. I was looking at my planner about 95% of our lessons have been in the last 3 hours of the day. We really are trying to find people to teach in the evening or the morning, to be more productive throughout the entire day and not just at night.
Well this week was pretty normal here. Its seems like our investigators are encountering a lot of difficulties espescially in the aspect of going to church. The harder we work, the harder it seems to be for those we teach.
I am liking the area but it will probably be the most difficult area that I have passed through in my misison. The ward is really great though, which is the area´s most redeeming quality. I have really grown to love the people here.
A less active that we are visiting invited us to watch her sing in the church that she is now visiting. We asked permission and we went there last night. It was an interesting expeirence. This is actually the third time while on the mission that I have visited a different church. It´s a little difficult to explain why this young girl decided to leave the LDS church and it’s a bit of a story too. The ward was taken suprisingly as she was very active and left all of a sudden without telling anyone. She is a really great person but is just a little confused with a few things.
When I visit other churches, I cant help but feel sad there. I always wish that I could talk individaully with everyone there and explain to them a few basic truths that would change their lives forever. Truths which are only found through the restored gospel. I almost cried as I thought about the amazing faith of these people and about the amazing oppurtunites that they are missing out on.
After the church there, a lot of the youth came to talk to us. We were treated a little bit like celebrities and a few people that know English tried to talk with us. They actually spoke fairly well. Normally, it is very difficult to understand what people are trying to say when they speak English but we understood everything they said.
That´s all for this week.
PS. I forgot to write about the protest this Sunday. There was about 2 million people in the center of São Paulo protesting the goverment. They are trying to impeach the president. Which I find rather ironic because she was elected about 6 months ago. We didn’t see anything where we were. It was pretty calm here.
This week it rained a lot which makes things a little bit more dificult sometimes. On Saturday we got caught in the pouring rain about 45 minutes from our house without an umbrella. We were ending a division. I´ll have to send you the pictures we took when we got home… drenched.
My companion has a rubix cube that I have been messing with and I was able to solve it which was exciting. I can consistently solve a large part of it but there are always a few that stay out of place.
We have been working a lot with less actives sense I got here. A lot of times it’s not a whole lot that they are waiting for to get back to church.
I gave a taught in church also, one of the speakers wasn’t at church and they asked me to give a talk about teaching. I talked about a few specific things but I think what stuck most was when I talked about teaching with our example. I talked about how you teased me, mom, because I eat ice cream just like dad, turning the spoon upside down. I thought a bit about this and it wasn´t something that Dad taught me to do nor was it something a did to imitate him but simple something that I did. I copied his example without even trying too.