Friday, October 25, 2013

The Brazilian People are My People

How was your week?
Really... interesting. Just busy work and lots of organizing activities to animate the members. 

Are your baptisms still on schedule for next week?
Maybe 1... We´re teaching her tomorrow to see if it´s all good to go. Her name is Leticia, 33 years old and extremely intelligent. She knows the bible stories really well. She came to church with us yesterday and had some brilliant questions during the classes. I hope she accepts to be baptized this Saturday.  We´re also teaching her aunt and her grandma.

How is the teaching going?
It´s going well. We are planting new ideas in our area so we´re doing more of the finding people, and they passing them to the other companionship in our area to teach them.

Did you get a lot of response to your radio program?
Yeah, I believe that we´re going to do it again this week. I´ll have a member send dad a message on FB to let you know the day and the time. We got 22 references and all of them are receiving the missionaries now. The sisters have marked dates for some of them already! It was for sure a success and will continue to be. 

Are you still eating with others quite a bit?
Well we eat lunch with them every day. We eat lunch on p day with all the missionaries in our zone in the chapel. My comp makes it, he´s a great cook. Then we play games and sports til it´s time to go home to shower and go back out to work.

What is your standard meal for breakfast?
Usually like a bologna and cheese sandwich. Something really simple, some crackers too. And usually just some juice. 

Hello Family!

So, my Mission President emailed you huh? Yes, this last week I was put in as a special assignment, to be the Traveling Assistant along with continuing as a Zone Leader. So I´ll basically be traveling every week and I´ll never be here anymore. When I´m in a different zone, the other zone leader will come here to work with my companion in my area to learn how we are working with the members. The members here are so excited about the missionary work. We have been getting so many references, and there are still lots of people calling to the radio every day. They LOVED our program. We sang lots of songs, and then also answered a lot of questions about the Church. We had 24 young men who came out to play soccer this week. Almost all of them are staying for seminary afterwards, and then accepting us, or the sisters, to go to their homes and teach their families.

Every single companionship in our zone had at least 1 investigator at church yesterday and all of us have dates marked to be baptized... except for us ahhh. We´re generally just passing our investigators to the other companionship in our branch though. With all of the activities that we´re doing we never have enough time to go to all of our appointments as well. We want to try to have a baptism with 30 young men and young women by the end of December. I think that´d be so cool because I love working with the youth. With all of the youth participating in everything, all of the older members are starting to get excited about the work. 
It´s interesting how I have changed since the start of the mission. It seems like the things that were really my focus before the mission aren´t anything in the vision anymore. Like I still love my family and my buddies and stuff, but my vision on what´s really important in life has changed so much. I love the mission more than anything. This has been the greatest experience that I´ve ever had. It´s been humbling to see how much we are blessed with living where we live, and how great of a difference the gospel does in our lives when we live it to our fullest. I love it here so much. The Brazilian people are MY people. I may have to come live here and work here or something one day when I´m still young  

Next week I dunno what time I´ll be online. My pday will start to be more and more busy... oh joy.   It´s really hectic and we spend a lot of time at the chapel meeting with members and doing trainings with the missionaries. We generally have a big family night each night in which we invite all of our teaching group and the other dupla and their teaching group and we all meet at a members´ home. It´s been a success in re-activating people. I just love making friends with all of them. We always bring the guitar with us as well to sing a little before the spiritual part. 

Well family, I love you very much. Thank you for all of your prayers and all that you´ve done for me. Have a great week! Be safe.

Elder Shepherd

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