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Semana 31

By 12:26 PM

Hey family!

Well, I just wanted to say first off that all of your prayers for me really worked this week - I felt a huge support from home carrying me through this adjustment phase and I am doing well and we are having success!

First off, ADAM I can´t believe you´re going to college this week!! You´ll love BYU. Super animada pra você. Second. The house looks SO DIFFERENT. Wow. (mom note: we did a kitchen remodel and I sent Emily photos this week). Third. LOTS and lots and lots of missionaries are getting assaulted here, so we´re not walking with purses or anything of value ever when we leave the house. So I probably won´t take any pictures while I´m here, unless it´s a baptism. Sorry mom...

This week, I had my first regret of the mission.. the sisters convinced me to cut my hair. What was a "trim" turned into 3 inches shorter.. I cried. Never again...

This week I cooked tapioca for the sisters, and everyone agrees that I make tapioca better than a brasilian! That was a big win in my book haha

I hit 7 months! I feel like a weathered missionary now.

This week we have been teaching two Senhors from the favela, named José and João. We´ve been teaching them independently and marked their baptisms for the same day next week, and afterwards we found out that they´re old pals! They even talk about us "meninas" when they´re together hahah. I love old people. Also part of our teaching group is a HUGE group of kids and young adults from a different favela called "inferno colorido", which means "colored hell". We asked someone why it´s called that, and they said because the living situation is horrible because it´s super dangerous, and all of the houses are multicolored. Interesting. We have to be careful about giving out Book of Mormons there because apparently they smoke the pages.... welcome to the favela. But one day we were contacting at a soccer field in inferno colorido and we started teaching one of the boys. When we sat down on the curb and said a prayer together, I turned around and noticed there were 7 or 8 other youth gathered behind us. I invited them to participate, and over the course of the lesson a hugeee group of people showed up to listen. I felt a little bit like Jesus teacing the multitudes haha. We marked a few baptisms there, but we will see how much potential they have to progress this next week. It´s funny, every time we mark a baptism we leave the appointment doing a victory dance in the street - best mission moments ever. Our ward mission leader went with us on sunday to pick up investigators and he took some pictures of us walking amidst the poverty - when he sends me the pictures I´ll get them to you guys. Super cool.

As for sunday - we almost had a baptism.. key word almost. Turns out there´s a girl who has been coming to church for 5 sundays and no one knew she was an investigator until now, and so we talked to her mom and signed the baptismal form and everything, but when we went to pick her up sunday she was at the pool.... so next sunday it is. Sunday morning we had some issues with rides, and only managed to bring one of our 14 confirmed investigators to come to church - Senhor José. But he absolutely LOVED church and is super excited for his baptism this sunday :) We only had one investigator at church for the first 2 hours up until sacrament meeting, when a FAMILY showed up - our investigators that finally decided to come to church! We were SO happy to see them, Felix, Nazaré, and Felipe their son, even though they only showed up for sacrament meeting. Only problem is now we need to divorce him from his first wife and marry him to the other.. but it´s what we do to help people make saving covenants with God.

I wanted to share with you guys something that I learned in my personal study this week:

"My personal study today was really gratifying - earlier this week I was feeling super overwhelmed with everything - huge stresses of being senior companion and adapting to a new area. I have prayed o hard to handle all of the pressure. One morning I read 3 Nephi 21:10 that answered everything for me and was so comforting. As a servant of the Lord, my life is in His hand, and even though I may be "marred" or "disfigured" (portuguese) because of the trials and experiences of the mission, I will not be harmed, and my Savior will cure me. It is wisdom of the Lord that we pass these difficulties and feel the pressure, and destroy our bodies doing it. Walking miles and miles in the blazing sun without water, eternally sunburnt, overweight, etc. All this, in the Lord´s service, and I know that He will heal me whatever comes my way."

I love you guys, and will talk to you all next week!

Sister Brown

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