Tuesday, May 29, 2012

My First Baptism

Hi family!

This week was super good! I had my first baptism on Saturday, her name was Kelly. She´d been coming to church for a while and asked me to baptize her.
 In answer to dad´s questions: 
My apartment isn't too good. haha We have a crappy washing machine. We have a small bathroom, living room, and 2 other rooms for both sets of companions. Elder Eskilsen was companions with Elder Moroni just before this;  I´ve met him a couple times. This past week we had zone conference with the whole zone. President came too! He´s so cool.  Ny companions full name is Regis Moroni Maxwell de Oliveira. He lives in Sao Paulo Interlagos. The baptism was soooo cool! the spirit was so strong. There are 300 ``members`` in our ward, but very few are active. 
I sent an SD card finally today, there are like 100 pictures or so on it, I think. We´re only allowed to take them on p day, but Cruz Alta is tiny and there´s nothing to see, so not a lot of pictures here. haha.  My companion speaks like a tiny bit of English.  He and the others all know rap music. Our district is about a 2 hour bus ride boundary around this city. We had to travel to another city for my companion to do a baptismal interview this past week, so that whole day we were walking, then on a bus, then walking. We are only allowed to use the bus and taxis when traveling to places like that. We walk everywhere else. Our chapel is like a mile away, but zone conference was in a chapel like 5 miles away. So lots of walking.
I´m finally losing weight haha. The ward I´m in is super small, but the people that actually show up are solid. We eat really well with the members. I have to speak Portuguese like 90 percent of the time. It´s surprising how many people know a little bit of English. I bought a basketball today with my money, so don´t worry when you see my statement down a little. I convinced president to let me and my companion play on p-days and in the mornings! He said we cannot play games that are competitive. So basically we shoot and play horse. You can still feel free to send lots of packages and letters haha :) 
The sports world sounds good, go celtics!!!!! There are kids everywhere in the streets playing soccer. they´d kick my butt. School here is only for 2 hours a day, and the kids don´t even go half the time. Here everyone is home for almoco - (lunch), not dinner. Lunch is like the biggest meal of the day. We have to pay for our own breakfast and dinner but half the time we are fed at dinner time by whoever we are teaching. I´m not in a big farming city, but there are farms all around it. It´s starting to get cold here, they said it gets to about 0 degrees Celsius, so like 30ish F, so not too bad. My companion is super cool, he is the DL so he´s always busy doing things on the phone. We have made a lot of good friends with investigators, so these up coming weeks should be solid. I´m in the lowest baptizing mission in the whole country of Brazil, so they´ll be sparse. My companion has been here for 10 months and has like 11. So i´m doing good so far haha. Everyone here drinks this weird tea stuff out of this weird cup. it´s called: Chimarrao. look it up on the internet. We are going to be moving into a new, super nice, apartment this week. so I'll take lots of pictures of that. The food is way better in here  than in the MTC.  
Tate´s graduation picture is really cute haha! ummm when are ya´ll going to Lake Powell? Send me pictures of it when you go!  There are 2 missionaries other than me, from Utah, in my zone, but I don´t remember their names. We have been teaching about 8 lessons a day, but have to walk SO far to do so. Last week we taught the most lessons in the whole mission haha. I have been teaching a lot of the restoration alone for practice. We have a solid family set up for baptism on the 10th of June. they will be great! 
That´s sweet Hailey made all stars! Tell her great job for me! And Tay will still be smaller than me when I get home cuz I do lots of sit ups ;) haha jk - he will kill me. Oh well. Have Tay really study his scriptures. Reading Preach My Gospel for FHM would be a great idea. It´ll help you get a lot more comfortable searching the scriptures. have Tay mark his for quick movement on his mission. We need to start our own co-ed team for softball when I get home cuz we need a team that is ACTUALLY good haha. Yeah we don
't get to play sports cuz President Costa made an announcement to all the missionaries cuz there were too many injuries.   
I miss all of you and love you so much! 
Elder Shepherd.

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