Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Thieving Monkeys

Well this week was sure a lot more exciting than the last week was.

First off we have a member who has a problem with thieves breaking into her house and stealing her food.  The thieves happen to be monkeys however, and she can't leave bananas out on her table or the monkeys will sneak in and start eating them.  That's definitely a problem you don't have to worry too much about in the U.S.A.

It has also been rainy these past few days, which has been awesome.  I like the rain down here.  I'm currently on my third umbrella because the rain has wrought havoc on my past two and they, unfortunately, did not survive the Brazilian tempests.  It rains sideways here to most of the time, so the umbrella only really keeps the upper half of your body dry.  People down here have been complaining that it has been "cold" the past few days, and therefore are taking appropriate measures to keep warm, such as sleeping in: socks, gloves, and coats.  You probably think I'm joking around about people sleeping in coats but it is no lie!!  We were teaching this woman who said she had to sleep in such attire.  She told us that she was dying from the cold while me and my companion where sitting there drenched in our own sweat.


Oh I did something super adult like and mature the other day, I bought a washing machine!!!  Yep I went to the store and did all sorts of super cool financial and grown up stuff. (AKA pointing to which washing machine I wanted to buy.)  Yeah, our washing machine, unfortunately, reached the end of it's life the other day and stopped working so we had to buy another one, which should be arriving on Wednesday!!!

So here's a pretty interesting story.  The other week I did an interview for a man who was a candidate for baptism.  We reached a certain a part and realized that he would have to change the way he lived or he couldn't be baptized.  He decided that he would rather live his old lifestyle and I told him that he couldn't get baptized, and that was that.

Well that's what I thought at least.

Turns out that he started talking bad about me to a bunch of people, including some members.  He told some people that I phrased one of the standard baptismal questions in a very vulgar and very inappropriate way, which was an utter lie; I said it exactly as the question was written.  He then started saying that we were a cult and what not and it just got kind of crazy.  Turns out he didn't like the fact that I told him he couldn't get baptized so he started saying all of these mean and hurtful things.  Oh well, what are you going to do.

I also got to go on a division with one of the elders in my district to the city of Laranjeiras, which translates to Orange Trees.  The name of the city however, is very misleading, because there is not a single orange tree in the entire city.  THIS IS FALSE ADVERTISING!!!!  It was really cool, because it looks exactly like Viçosa!  Just more ghetto.  They've got this little group out there and they have their meetings in some guy's house and it's currently a little group with a lot of potential to grow.  I just thought it was cool because it reminded me of a past area.
A Cappella de Laranjeiras  (The Chapel of Oranges)

So now we're getting to the sad news of the week.  We had this baptism all prepared for this week, we were following up with here, everything was all set.  I was happy, Elder Coon was happy, she was happy.

Until Friday.

Friday the house fell down.  She disappeared off the face of the earth and no one has been able to find her, or talk with her since.  We showed up with the Zone Leaders to do the interview and alas she was not found.  We had faith that we would be able to find her on Saturday, the day of the baptism.  We even filled up the font as a demonstration of our faith.  However, she apparently had other plans and still hasn't shown up.  This naturally could be a big ol' slap in the face for my faith and self esteem, but it is all good, I did my part.

Needless to say, Saturday was a bit rough, we drowned our sorrows in Açaí and tried to teach some other lessons but alas, none could feel the gaping hole in my heart, which could only be filled by her baptism.  After a bit of light weeping, we did have a miracle in a different form.  Our recent convert, got up to bore her testimony during fast and testimony meeting and it was amazing!!!  Until now, she's already read:  The Book of Mormon almost twice,  The Gospel Principles manual,  Daughters in My Kingdom,  The Teachings of the Prophet Joseph Fielding Smith,  The Pearl of Great Price, and is currently pounding down Doctorine and Covenants.  She got up a bared her testimony and she sounded like someone who has been a member for years.  She told everyone how she was searching for truth and to learn more and how God sent her two angels to come and show her the truth.  I was very happy.
The Acai I drowned my sorrows in.

So that about wraps things up for now.  This is the last week before transfers, because this transfer is only a transfer of four weeks. So we'll be working to end things on a high note.  Love you all, and just to let you know, that picture of the cast of the new star wars movie just made me tremble with excitement.
Star Wars 7 cast.
May the fourth be with you.

-Élder Johnson



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