Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Week 60: Milagres

Central Falls in on FIREEEEEEEEEE! Not literally. But spiritually :)

So many good things happened this week. Let's see if I can tell you about all of them with the time I have!

Monday night we taught Keila and Nataviah (the 2 7-year olds from the Silveiras that like church) about Sunday Sam and Fubeca Freddy. Those mice teach them all about how to act on Sundays haha, it was Elder Araujo's idea. They really liked it though!

Tuesday we had a really awesome Skype lesson with a man named Julio. He lives in Sao Paulo and I think I've talked about him before... anyways, we taught him the Restoration and he told us how his family has been looking for churches and his wife liked that he was talking to us! *whew* I'm glad she's not weirded out that some girls in Boston are teaching her husband about the Church of Jesus Christ :) We were going to Skype him again on Thursday, but something else very exciting happened instead...

We taught Maria Silveira about commandments and prayer. She is really good at praying, and she actually will pray with us there, unlike some of our other investigators. She is so excited to be baptized with Walter and Paulinho :) Later that night we also visited Zito and Filomena. It was a super late appointment, but we taught the whole Plan of Salvation and talked about baptisms for the dead and everything. They loved it! We didn't quite set a baptismal date though..... the elders ended up doing that later :)

Wednesday we had a few appointments with members--new member lessons for Anselmo and Clarice and we visited with Odete, who is a super strong member from Cape Verde! She's great. Because everything else we had planned cancelled, we drove down to Providence to take care of some errands and stop by a referral. This family is from Mozambique, and they are pretty cool! They are Jehovah's Witnesses, but the oldest brother is a former investigator, and they were so nice. Funny thing, though, only the kids speak Portuguese. The parents speak Swahili and another African language. We walked out of their house and Sister Couto said "not ANOTHER language! I can't do another one!" hahaha. It was really interesting though, because these people have almost nothing. It was like another world being in their house. I can't even begin to tell you all of the new things that I have experienced being on my mission. It makes me so grateful that I am serving in America, honestly. What would it be like to serve your mission in Mozambique? Amazing, I'm sure, but so very very different.

Also, Wednesday was Sister Couto's year mark, so we celebrated by going to get frozen yogurt at--you guessed it--Tutti Frutti! They had one in the Providence Mall, so we enjoyed ourselves a little trip down memory lane and some frozen goodness. They did not have a nutella flavor, but I did put nutella on my yogurt.

That night the elders set a date with Zito and Filomena and another guy, Anilo, to be baptized on September 20th! Wahooooo!

Thursday. Oh Thursday. We did some digital mission work in the morning, but few people were on. We did pass a girl in Vietnam off to the missionaries there! The elder we talked to on the phone was from Argentina. Imagine having to learn not only Vietnamese, but English too because they don't just teach you Vietnamese straight from Spanish at the MTC! Craziness.

After we finished, the Spanish elders led us and the English sisters into one of the Primary classrooms, turned the lights on, screamed "let the games begin!" and ran out, slamming the door behind them. And thus began the Great Service Adventure. (sorry, that's a terrible name)

Basically the Portuguese Elders had set up this entire scavenger hunt around the church building and their apartment building for us and the other sisters! It was absolutely hilarious. I have 11 videos from it because one of the rules of the game was that we had to film everything. We also had these different challenges--we had to each to a card from the game Quelf, plus 10 jumping jacks in skirts, among other things. It was super duper fun. I love the missionaries I serve with here in Central Falls. They are the greatest.

The rest of the day was weekly planning! We also visited Rosie with the En sisters, which is always a good time. I've talked about her before, I'm sure. She's a firey one! But so funny. One thing she tells us often is that we text her at just the right time--we try to send her some scriptures to read every so often, and lately they have been getting to her at exactly the time that she needs them. Trust me, we have NO idea about those things. In fact, from our point of view, we always forget and never send the texts on time. But the Lord knows her, and He definitely directs us as we try to help her come back to church. He is so aware of all of our needs!

Friday we had a lovely day. District meeting complete with BLTs for lunch, a cancelled 2nd lunch appointment, and some visits! We talked about VT with one VT companionship, and we taught Ana Goncalves about the Law of Chastity. That lesson went actually very well and she loved it. She has the most beautiful dream to be able to live in her own house with her own family and go to church every week. Please pray that her mother's heart will be softened so that Ana will be able to come to church and be baptized without losing that relationship with her mother. She really needs it. We're going to try to send the missionaries in Cape Verde over to her mom to see if that will help.

Saturday we played Frisbee, painted a school, visited Odete again, and helped at a PVC tour of our chapel! Basically with that we walked around Central Falls to find people to bring in and see the displays and videos that the Portable Visitor's Center has. It was a pretty great success! It was a late night though too haha.

Sunday was crazy as always. Actually, it was relatively calm. We had an amazing 40 people at church, even though we didn't do enough work during the week to get people there. So great! The Lord is so good to us. That night we went to my first Spanish dinner--I really seriously can understand Spanish but I can NOT speak it to save my life. Oh well. When the Hermana invited us for dinner though, I was proud of myself when I said "hoy? si!" It was delicious food too. We later introduced Brianna to the English sisters and spent some time just talking with her. She wants to go to church so badly, but hasn't been able to quite break free of her situation enough to feel like she can go. She is an amazing person, but she still has a long road to travel. I love her so much. It will be good to work with the English sisters as we try to get more members involved with her. :)

And there you have it!

To summarize:

We now have 7 baptismal dates for the month of September, and we are planning on setting 3 more. The Lord is definitely hastening His work here in Central Falls, and it is an amazing thing to be a part of it.

Also, this week I decided that I will leave school and work and things like that for when I get home. That means that I will only do the absolutely necessary things while I am here (aka get an Ecclesiastical Endorsement from President Miller, that has to be done here I'm pretty sure) and leave the less necessary things (picking classes, looking for a job) for once I'm home. Part of me is a little nervous about classes and things, but I promised the Lord that I would not worry about it and just do missionary work, as long as He would help me get the classes I need and guide me in the way He wants me to go. I know He will help me, so I'm not worried :)

Which actually means Mom, Dad, could you help me get some housing for when I get back? I feel like that is probably one of the more necessary things I probably should do before I get home. I know I'm really early, but the sooner it's all set, the better I'll feel.

For now, I have a lot of work to do here!! This is my time to truly serve the Lord, so I'm going to sprint all the way until December 18th. There are too many things to do to worry about afterwards.

I love you all and hope you have a great last week of summer! Don't be too sad--all of the kids here start school on Tuesday, so at least you have one more week than them.

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