Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Missionary Work and Carnival

 Day 235 - March 2, 2014
         I'm doing just fine! Working hard as usual. I threw up a couple times this week, slept a ton on Friday to recuperate, but I got better really quickly, so its all good!  It is Carnival week here, but in our area there are no restrictions, except that we cannot go to the actual carnival celebration for obvious reasons.  Unlike what you would expect, here in Bom Jardim, carnival is super chill. Just a bunch of kids running around in the streets throwing flour and eggs. AND funk music. It's not the kind of funk that you're thinking about, but funk here is the worst kind of music that you could possibly imagine. It's worse than any kind of rap you could try to find. ANYWAYS, we don't even get a day off here. Our zone actually has a goal to do 317 contacts during carnival, which runs from basically Sunday until Thursday. (317 because that's the mission's goal for baptisms this month.) It was our zone leaders' idea, but I think that it's pretty cool. I don’t know how many people will actually be around to contact during the holiday, but we shall see.

Here is the past week in review:
P-day entertainment
Monday – This was a relaxing P-day.  I am definitely not used to that.  To not be busy is pretty strange for me.  We bought a bunch of food, fruit, and snacks, watched Monsters University, and I got to practice piano! The piano was definitely the best part of the day!  As far as work goes, we talked with a recent convert who wanted to fall away from the church.  I think that we helped him to resolve his problem.  We also gave a Book of Mormon to an investigator who is going on a long business trip. 

Tuesday- Our weekly planning session actually went well for us for once.  Almost every time it ends with hurt feelings, but we actually were able to resolve everything like adults.  SHOCKER! 
         I ended up getting sick after lunch at a member’s house.  I was sick again two days later, but with some extra rest on Friday, I am feeling better.
         Later in the day on Tuesday, we went to visit a contact, but were only able to talk with his Mom. It was kind of a cool experience because she has been to 3 of her siblings’ baptisms, but has never investigated the church.  Now her son in interested in the church.  She is Catholic, but she says that she only attends because her Dad wants her to go to church with him.  She said that of all the churches that she has been to, including her church, she felt the best when she visited the LDS church.

Wednesday – We went early to district meeting and I practiced more piano for about an hour!  It felt so nice to actually play.  Anyways in our meeting we set a goal to have 36 baptisms as a zone this month to help out with our mission goal of 317 baptisms.  It is going to be difficult.  I just hope that we don't have a lot of Elders that will just be throwing people into the water and calling it good, because there is a huge lack of follow-through here.

Thursday – After lunch we went back to teach some of our investigators and they (not surprisingly) live outside of our zone.  Every time we find someone who is ready and willing to listen to us, they live outside of our teaching area.  The highlight of the day was probably when we had our lesson with I.  We ended up teaching her with Clara and Niliane (who is waiting for he mission call).  Our investigator, who is normally very quiet, was completely silent with other people around.  Seriously, she was not saying a thing.  Elder F. and I were just about ready to give up, but we asked Clara to give her testimony.  Just before she started, I. asked her if it was hard for her to join the church.  Clara then shared her conversion story, which involved a lot of personal sacrifice.  It had a really huge impact on I.  She is now super excited for her baptism and is very happy.  She seems almost like a different person.

Friday – Well, I woke up and was sick again.  (This time with vomiting and diarrhea.)  I called my mission president’s wife like we are supposed to, and then I decided that I could tough it out.  Elder Cet. and I went on a split because we were both feeling sick and thought that our companions might be able to get something done without us slowing them down.  We stopped by a couple of houses to try to teach a little bit, but no one answered their door. Finally we gave into whatever it was that was making us sick.  We slept from 3-6 and then we got ready for out Family Night that we do with all of our investigators who want to come.  It was a good thing that Elder Cet. and I went, because we had a really spiritual meeting where everyone felt inspired to make changes in their lives to be able to feel the Spirit more.  The members who came said that they felt inspired to be better people, and our investigators were inspired to be baptized (I. in particular.)

Saturday/Sunday – The weekend was a little slow, except for our lesson with D. (the son of the woman I mentioned early who has all of her siblings in the church.)  He is only 14 years old, but he really wants to be baptized and prepare for a mission.  He is super smart and it is awesome to teach him because he is eager to learn.  He has already been to church twice.  The other elders had a baptism, and we invited I. to go to see what it was like.  She had a great experience and is very excited to be baptized soon. 
         All in all we are doing really well here.  The only problem is that we don't really have problems.  Because of that, our zone leaders, and even our district leader, don’t pay too much attention to us.  They don’t give us very many tips on how we can do better or anything.  Fortunately, we have our ward mission leader.  He helps Elder F. and I a TON!  On Sunday, he gave us he following advice, “Just keep dong what you are doing and you will get better with practice and time.”  I HATE that answer because I like to have something that I can actual work on!  No worries though, all is well.  I am at the 8 month mark…WOOHOOO! Soon my sister will be at the half way point of her mission!        

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