Last Tuesday we had the opportunity to go to the temple in Porto Alegre. For lunch before the session we ate with a family that seemed 100% Americanized. They all speak English fluently, and all the kids were going to school in Utah and returning to Brazil during the Summer. Their son is even serving a mission in Salt Lake right now. They served us nachos with brownies for dessert! At the temple we were able to see the missionaries from other Zones which was cool. When we returned to Feitoria, our bishop sent us pizza delivered for dinner. He´s starting up with a pizza business and told us that he´d send us pizza every Tuesday night. He´s the best.
Tuesday evening as we were on the bus a contact I´d made the week before named Sabrina passed us and recognized us. When I´d contacted her she´d shown a lot of interest and even given us the cell number that she usually uses. On the bus she talked with us and we set up a time to visit her. Unfortunately she works two jobs and doesn´t have a lot of free time but she continued to show interest. She´d been through a bad marriage and was trying to figure out what to do with herself now. I thought about the contacts I´d been doing and realized that this week especially it seemed like every contact was a golden one. The Lord sure is blessing us in this area.
On Wednesday we visited an older lady named Jacira. She had been living with a less active member for years but something happened and he moved away. She had always wanted to be baptized (it´d been 10 years that she´d been saying that) yet she kept putting it off saying, "I need to be more prepared." She´d also been attending church for 10 years, had a strong testimony, and had already been reading D&C, and the Pearl of Great Price as well as the Book of Mormon. The last week she´d told us that she would be baptized this coming Summer (December-ish). However, we visited her and after sharing a message about the importance of baptism and not putting it off, she accepted to be baptized on the 27th of June!
Thursday night we had an FHE with Lucas´ family (he was baptized last week). For dinner I taught them all how to make American Pancakes and made Buttermilk Syrup to go with them. At first they were hesitant because the pancakes they eat are thin and eaten with ground beef. They questioned the large amount of batter I had made. However, they understood why after they had their first bite. The 50ish pancakes I´d made for this family of 5 were devoured in less than 10 minutes with cries for more! I would say it was a success. Earlier in the week I had stopped by to give Lucas a CTR ring and Book of Mormon picture book that I´d bought at the temple and while I was making the pancakes he proudly showed me the ring he hadn´t taken off yet and how his sister Evelin had read all the way to chapter 11 with him every night.
Also last week we had made a contact with two women walking the opposite direction. While we were talking one of them asked, "are you guys the elders?" When we said yes one of them told us that her husband is a member and the other woman told us how she had been taught by the missionaries in Santa Cruz but hadn´t been baptized because she moved here. Talk about golden contacts! We visited them several times during the week and helped the husband (Madesson) re-activate himself and taught the two young women.
On Friday we visited a contact I´d made that lived in a closed community. When I found the house, number 17, it was empty. Just as we were about to leave, an older lady came out of the neighboring house, number 16, and asked us who we were looking for. We were a little surprised but we told her that we were trying to get in contact with Dirse and her daugher Brenda. Without hesitation she invited us in telling us that Dirse was her daughter and Brenda her granddaughter. When we entered she told us how she´d been praying for help in her life for many days and had felt that she should step out of her house at the very moment that we were knocking on her neighbor´s door. She said that when she saw us she knew that we were 'good men' and that we would help her. When Dirse and Brenda arrived, they told us that when I´d contacted them at the bus stop the other day, they felt something they´d never felt before. She told us that she never gives anyone her address because of security, but she had seen "a light about us and knew that we were really servants of the Lord." We couldn´t believe what we were hearing but she went on to say that Brenda had turned to her after we´d left the bus stop and said, "They had the Holy Ghost with them, there was something different about them." Apparently they´d been waiting for our visit anxiously. The lesson about the Restoration that we taught was one of the most spiritual ones I´d ever participated in. The next day when we visited them again they accepted the Book of Mormon without hesitation and told us how they´d read the pamphlet we´d left with them (usually investigators don´t) and received an answer that our message was true after they said a prayer that night.
Saturday evening we were called by the Zone Leaders to do and interview for them in their area. As we grabbed the tram in São Leopoldo we saw three deaf men in the middle of the station arguing in sign language! I´d never seen something like it before, they were arguing heatedly yet not saying a word.
On Sunday I we had an FHE with a less-active family and I made cookies for them. After they were all baked everyone in the family was trying to hide them from everyone else because they wanted them all to themselves!