Monday, April 6, 2015

Vila Sônia - Week 10

So last Tuesday, we had a mission conference for Easter. The thing that President Cabral talked a ton about was the necessity of being excellent, not just good. There are three scriptures he shared that I can't remember now, but there's one in Daniel, Hebrews and then Ether 12:11. I think about having a more excellent spirit, giving a more excellent sacrifice and walking a more excellent path. Heavenly Father doesn't want us to be "good". He wants us to be excellent. They also gave us little cards advertising the Church's Easter video for us to give out to people, so now I've finally started doing 10 contacts a day like we've been asked. I hope you have all seen the Because He Lives video. It's incredible. The Church even kinda bought YouTube yesterday to show it, so that every single person on the face of this earth who got on to Youtube yesterday saw a 15 second clip of it. Our Church is so awesome. :)

On Wednesday, we taught seminary to the youth in our branch, about D&C 18:17-47, about taking the name of Christ upon us. We also taught aNOTHER person who doesn't really have any idea how to read, so that's a challenge I hadn't thought about.

On Thursday, Irmã Barbara fed us cow stomach for lunch AND dinner! Because we couldn't get enough of it for lunch, haha! (that was a little bit sarcastic, I'm sorry) It just kinda tasted like we were eating fat. So it wasn't super weird, unless you think eating fat with rice is super weird.

On Friday, we were fed again by Barbara, and while she was getting it ready I was just kinda kicking around a soccer ball with her two kids. And every time I maneuvered around Jared, the youngest of the two, he just kicked me in the leg as hard as he could instead :) Which was really funny, because it obviously hurt him a lot more than it hurt me :) But it was a lot of fun, it reminded me of the days when Jake and I used to play soccer in the front living room of our Florida house, with the door and the entrance to the other rooms as the goals.

And then General Conference Saturday! It was incredible. At first, I wasn't ridiculously excited for it (as were Elders Zenger and Lindsey) but then once it started I couldn't get enough. I got so much more out of it than I ever have before, it was crazy. There was so much good stuff and so many good counsels to write down. There were so many talks about the family and marriage, it's obvious that we need to get working on fixing the situation in society. And also, there will probably be a lot more attacks on the family in the near future. Us missionaries were joking around that we would call President Cabral and tell him we needed to go home, because we couldn't let anything get in the way of getting married and having a family :) But it was honestly just a joke, none of us feel ready for getting married yet haha. I'm perfectly happy to take advantage of this time I have to prepare a little bit first. Also, as a side note, I finally opened the white chocolate peppermint M&Ms to snack on during General Conference. So thank you very much for those, Mom :) I almost forgot I had them. But I still have most of them left, don't worry.

Anyways, that was my week! We did have a baptismal service between the two Sunday sessions of conference (it's weird how much nicer the service felt when it was in a real-life chapel, haha) but Valéria's family didn't make it to conference I guess, and we didn't manage to teach them enough anyways. So that should be two weeks from now, because they'll have to go to church this Sunday and then get baptized the next. But that gives us a lot of time to prepare them really well, they're an awesome family.

Not too much else happened, we're finding a lot of people and we're just working on contacting all of them now, there's a big list. Once we get that started this week, we'll have a lot of new people to teach.

One of the things we're doing now to contact more people is that on the Ônibus, we're getting up in front of everybody (like standing at the front of the bus) and announcing who we are, and that we have a message about living prophets and eternal families, and that we'll be asking each one of them if they'd be interested to know more, and then we go through and talk to everyone and hopefully get addresses and phone numbers from them. Is it pretty crazy to imagine me doing that? :) Not going to lie, I haven't actually been the one to get up in front of everybody and do the first announcement, but I think it's going to be my turn here in a little bit, maybe on the way to our zone meeting tomorrow. But it's nice, because then you can use the rest of the bus ride to just relax, because you know that you've literally told every single person inside the bus about the gospel, and you've given them a chance to learn more. But we're talking to a ton of people now, at least 10 different people per missionary per day. So it's 20 people per day for our companionship. I think it's easier to do it in Portuguese than it would be to do it in English though. Maybe, who knows.

I got a picture of our bathroom finally (because I finally felt like it was in an acceptable state after some major cleaning done on it by the incredible Elder Lindsey):

and pictures of a frog we found in our little patio area (I guess that's what you could call it) that Elder Zenger and I had way too much fun with (sorry in advance for the scary tan line hahaha):

and a caterpillar we found outside our house one morning:

Anyways, that's my update for this week. Thanks to all of you for your support!

Elder Bratsman

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