Como vai? Tudo bem? Holy cow!! It has been a crazy week. So many emotions!
So I´ll go over kind of day by day:
Monday- Flew to Brasil. It was a long flight and I was very tired. I was so excited to see Anne, Michael, and bebe Jane. So wonderful!! Super fun.
Tuesday- Arrived in the São Paulo airport. This guys was waiting for us outside of customs. We exchanged money and then got our ticket for our flight to Curitiba. Eventually got there and met up with one of the APs. Then President Monterio came over. We took a picture and they put it on the Facebook page. If you want to see what is going on in my mission, join the facebook page and become friends with Sister Monteiro! Anyways, so then for some reason we had to wait for an hour for the bus to come. We just waited outside of the airport with President and the AP. Then we finally got on the bus and made our way to the church closest to the mission home. We dropped off our luggage and then walked to the mission home. There we had amoço (which is lunch) and then walked back to the church and had transfers! I was sad to not have an interview with President Monteiro. I really feel like I don´t know him at all and it makes me sad. Anyways so transfers was crazy because the AP just got up there right away and started saying missionaries´names. We didn´t start with a prayer or anything. (Here they have the big transfers on Monday and then the trainee transfers on Tuesday). They said my name and I got up and my trainer got up as well. Her name is Sister da Rosa. BUT guess what?!?!?!?!? I have two other companions! Yes, two other companions. It is so funny! So my trainer (trainadora), sister da Rosa is from Brazil but speaks fluent english, spanish, and french. She is a rock. Then my other companion, Sister Johnson, is from Oakland, California (yes, my second companion with the last name of Sister Johnson!). And then my other companion, who is training as well, is Sister Espinoza! She is from Santiago, Chilé!!!!! Craziness. Plus we live in a house with another trio! Seven sisters in one house. So we switch companions everday. One day I´m with Sister da Rosa, another with Sister Johnson. It is really fun and I really like all my companions. So yeah, we went home and I carried our bags upstairs. Then we went to work. We had an FHE with an investigator and a member. I had no clue what was going on but it was fine!
Oh by the way, I am serving in Santa Felicidade! It is a city just outside of Curitiba.
Wednesday- I was with Sister da Rosa. We went to this place that is part of the branch in this area. It actually isn´t our area but we go there when we get referrals. We had some appts to teach recent converts so we went and did that. I taught about keeping the sabbath day holy. I was really nervous right before we went in. I prayed with my companion and I prayed for help. I taught and it was good! I can barely talk but I am just trying to talk as much as I can so that I can learn this language fast.
Thursday- I was with Sister Johnson. We decided to split the areas up so I got one half and Sister Espinoza got another. It just so happened that my area had no investigators! So knocking on doors is what I have done for the past 5 days. Actually, here you can´t knock so we clap and the people come out and we talk with them. There is always a gate blocking the house and so you can´t knock. I am doing door appoaches and am trying to teach. Anyways so that day we just walked and walked and walked and walked. Imagine walking for 7 hours straight because that is what I have been doing these last few days!
Anyways, so thursday was good.
Friday- Things were getting a little hard. Actually that whole day we had to go all around our area because we need to find a new place to live. They´ve been having trouble finding places because everything is so expensive here. So we didn´t work much but I wasn´t feeling like a missionary because I couldn´t talk to people. I was getting really frustrated that I couldn´t understand anyone!! I wanted to talk and felt so pushed back because of the language. I was getting really close to tears on our way home but I didn´t want to cry so I was holding it in. We got home and I was about to start planning with Sister Johnson and I just cried. I told her I was not feeling like a missionary because I wasn´t understanding people. She gave me a hug and told me she knew exactly how I felt. I really am trying to not be hard on myself and laugh when I make stupid mistakes! For example, yesterday at church, the Branch President was teasing me and asked if I had been baptized. Stupid me said no! Haha I am starting to understand a tiny bit. Very small but I am kind of getting stuff, sometimes.
Saturday- All day tracting with Sister Johnson. Some people answer like they do in the states but it is funny to me when others just say, "pode" (meaning yes you can share a message right now!) Then we ask if we can come in, they say "pode" and we go and teach the first lesson! Some are very receptive! But there is also rejection which isn´t suprising. The members are really nice here.
Sunday- Another long day of tracting. We talked to this one woman who was catholic and she let us in. She really wasn´t that interested but we taught the first lesson. In the middle of the lesson, her sister came and I had this feeling that we were there for her. The sister grabbed a chair and sat down and just listened to us. She was really interested and said that she wanted us to visit at her house! Very exciting!
So this mission is SOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO different from Ohio. It is hard to adjust and I just have to change my mindset about things. We invite and baptise people here in two weeks! It is crazy! Plus we teach differently. We focus on different stuff in the lesson and teach simpler. My mission president doesn´t want us to waste our time so if someone doesn´t seem interested but they say, come in, we just say a prayer or quick message and leave.
I haven´t gotten my money yet so I have to use the card. I´m grateful that I had my emergency money with me because I have been using that. It is frustrating to not have it.
I´m really happy though. It is great to actually be in my mission! It feels good. I really like my companions. I haven´t gotten to know sister espinoza very much but I really like my trainer and sister johnson. Sister johnson and I click really well. It is nice to have people that are fun.
Sam- Loved your last emails. Don´t worry, you are a great missionary. Pray for the Lord to help you.
I was studying in Ether 12 this morning and I love verse 4. There are 5 steps to how a miracle occurs so read those and apply them in your life.
We have a mission tour coming up next week. The area president for brazil is coming. It is suppose to be good!
Anyways! Family, love you lots! Sounds like things are going well! Curitiba is great. It is different from Ecuador and Peru! Hope you all have a wonderful week. Good luck!