I am serving a two year mission for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in the Brazil, Porto Alegre North Mission. I post on this blog every week, so check it out to hear about my life as a missionary!

Monday, December 14, 2015

Week 67

Something that made me super happy this week is that as we visited the neighborhood Boa Vista to teach a few of our investigators and recent converts, we passed by a house and found a couple waiting to get to know us. More than 3 months ago I had baptized a young girl named Lenai. Her parents had been falsely accused of some crime and had been put in prison to wait trial a bit earlier and I didn´t get to know them.Then the day after Lenai was baptized, she was taken with her older sister and other siblings by the orphanage, so she never was able to be confirmed as a member. I had lamented quite a bit because after 3 months of not being confirmed, she'd have to be baptized again. We'd grown pretty attached to her and her siblings while teaching them and missed them quite a bit.

Then this week we got to know their parents, Maria & Elisandro, as they'd been set free due to lack of incriminating evidence. I was very impressed with them and their love for their family. We talked a bit and as we got to know each other and after we'd taught them about the church, they expressed their desire to get to know the church. On Saturday we were able to help them pick up some furniture and bring it to their house and they were very thankful. They were surprised that we, with some members of the church, offered this as a service, and not as an opportunity to earn money. When they had told us how they'd tried to get help from others and that they'd all offered to do it for $30, we expressed our surprise. I told them, "in the true Church of our Saviour the members seek for opportunities to serve one another just as Christ taught in the first commandment He gave us, to love our neighbor and to serve him." They were touched and accepted our offer to help them.

Yesterday they came to church and enjoyed it quite a bit. I was thankful because the classes were focused on the family, and then during Sacrament Meeting the Primary (with Primary President Cristina Machado, my recent convert!) had their end-of-year program to present what they'd learned and done. Maria and Elisandro informed us that if everything goes right, Lenai and her siblings will be able to come home this coming week.

During the week we also prepared our long-time investigator Suelí to be baptized. She'd had a baptismal date marked with her many times but fell short because of her addiction to smoking. Finally this week with much prayer and fasting she stopped smoking and was baptized last Saturday morning. On Sunday she was confirmed a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints along with Waldomiro, Zilda, Gisele, Regina, Yuri, Felomena, and Morgana.

Sunday night we visited a woman named Sheila. She'd had to work that day so she wasn't able to make it to church unfortunately. However, when we got to her house (she'd arrived from work around 7p) she told us that she wanted to be baptized right then. So we called up the Bishop and the 1st counselor and took her to the church and she was baptized right then and there! Her story is very interesting, when she was 11, the missionaries contacted her and after a few weeks of attending church she was baptized on a Saturday. As she was going home from the baptism she sprang her ankle and wasn't able to go to church the next day to be confirmed. Then more than 15 years later we found her and she was baptized! We joked with her afterwards that we'd give her a ride home just to make sure that she wouldn't spring her ankle again.


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