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Semana 29

By 10:56 AM

Olá família,

Well, this week was a little uneventful, but a few things noteworthy happened that I´d like to share!

First off, Sister Coelho and I went to the mission office for her to have an interview with President, and I saw Elder Reynolds there!! We were in the same MTC district in Provo, and he finally got his visa last transfer and came to Brazil! It was soooo fun to catch up on what was going on, he had more contact with the other visa waiters from our district and I was so happy to hear news and talk with him! 

This week the other sisters had a miracle baptism (I´m sure Sister Baker will explain all about it in her weekly email) of an "eternal" investigator - Mara. She´s passed through 4 or 5 sets of missionaries (me included) and she just wouldn´t be baptized. She went to church every sunday, had all of the church materials/apps downloaded on her phone, participated in gospel doctrine and relief society, and no one could figure out what was holding her back - other than Sister Baker and Pinheiro. She was finally baptized this week, and we were all SO happy! I think of that scripture in Alma 29 that talks about rejoicing in the success of others - we´re all a part of this work.

This week we were doing some street contacting, and a woman stopped me and said, "Young lady, I need to talk to you. I need help and direction in my life, when can you come visit me?" I was sort of stopped in my tracks but saw that she really was in need and it wasn´t a threat and that we would come visit her a little bit later. When we got to her house, she opened up to us about her life situation, which is personal that I won´t share but she was living in fear for her life and was helpless. She told us that she had prayed to God for help, and had left the house and saw us on the street. She said that when she saw me in particular, she saw this "light of God" radiating, and that she knew that she needed to talk to me and that I had the answers to her prayers. She will be an awesome investigator that will experience a real conversion to the gospel and I am excited to help her.

Church on sunday was a bust - it was Father´s Day here in Brazil, and when we showed up to church empty handed (no investigators), there were 20 people from our ward at church. It didn´t get much better by sacrament meeting, only 55 people. What a bummer to work so hard all week and nothing happens on sunday! But, with every failure comes a tender mercy of the Lord - Adriano gave his first talk in sacrament meeting, AND was sustained as the second counselor in the Young Men´s Presidency!!!! Ahhhhh so cool to see my convert as a church leader, influencing the lives of other people! All of my converts contribute to strengthening the ward, but it was such a good moment for me. Also, Emanuel went to the temple with the caravan this weekend for the first time! He said it changed his life, and bore his testimony about it at church. Like I´ve always said, there is no greater happiness in life than seeing the lives of other people change through the restored gospel.

I studied a lot about obedience this week - something that I didn´t really value before the mission but I have come to love and appreciate. Obedience is more than just following rules, it is a direct measurement of our love and dedication to the Lord. When we obey because we WANT to, we are eternally blessed as we humble ourselves enough to submit to the Father´s will.

One last thing- did you guys ever get my letters that I sent in May? I heard it takes about 3 months to send any letters, so they should be arriving soon. 

Thanks for all of the family updates, I love you guys! Sorry this week´s email was super short and uninteresting but not every week is made equal ;) Next week´s email will be much more exciting because it´s TRANSFERS!! Something big is going to happen - not sure, but the mission will have lots of changes. Only 3 missionaries are arriving, and 15 or so are going home, and by the numbers at least 5 areas will close and we will have lots of changes in the mission leadership. Regardless, I am excited for the next area, next companion, and new experiences! I am so grateful for my time in Ala Natal (the Natal Ward) and have grown immensely. I feel content that I have done my part here to strengthen and help the ward and the area here. I guess serving 6 months in one area does that to ya ;)

Até próximo,

Sister Brown

(mom note:  Emily was transferred to the city of Mossoro and was made a senior companion.)

Good-bye party for Sister Brown and Sister Baker who were transferred

Sister Brown and Adrian

Sister J Baker has been such a wonderful friend, mentor, and example to Sister Brown--Emily will miss her immensely

Sister Brown and Sister Coehlo--darling missionaries!

Sister Brown says cats are like rodents in Brazil--everywhere--and most are not cute, but she loved this little kitty and was tempted to take it home!

Some of the sister missionaries of the Natal mission--at the mission home, maybe?

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