Dear Family & Friends,
Well, it was General Conference week! There are two times in the entire year when the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints doesn't have Sacrament services and those are the General Conference meetings held every first weekend of April and October. Many church leaders speak, including the living prophet, Thomas S. Monson, and members of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles. All of the sessions are available to watch live online, and are also broadcast to chapels across the globe.
All the missionaries in my zone watched at our stake center. There are two other American elders in my zone, and we all got to watch in ENGLISH!!! And in our own separate room too, so we were feeling pretty special. I can't really decide on a favorite talk, but one of the best was from Dieter F. Uchtdorf, one of the counselors to the Prophet. He spoke about gratitude, and gave a very interesting perspective on it. Look it up on lds.org instead of listening to me try and explain it!
So there are 4 sessions of conference, each two hours on Saturday and Sunday. On Sunday, in the two hours between the sessions, we had a baptismal service of 6 baptisms!!! All the baptisms in our zone for this week. Our baptism was Rafael, who is 14. He's pretty funny, it was quite an experience teaching him.
Does everyone know the meaning of the phrase, "Cool story, bro."? If not, ask a teenager. So here in Fortaleza, there are a lot of instances where this phrase can be applied. Because here, people just like to talk. It doesn't really matter what the context of the conversation is, they'll just say what's on their mind. So it can be really hard to keep people focused on the lessons during our visits - haha. It can all begin with a simple question. For example, we were following up with someone after giving them a Book of Mormon and a scripture to read, and an invitation to pray and ask the Lord if it's true. So we get there, say a pray, start the lesson, and Elder Oliveira asks, "Sister, did you read the scripture from the Book of Mormon and pray to know if it's true?" and she replies, "Well, I was born a Catholic....." and talk talk talk for about 5 minutes. So that can make it a little difficult to teach, but the lessons are always interesting! I love it here!!!!
I hope you all have a great week!
Usually I put a scripture, but go watch conference instead!!!
|me and my awesome companion!|
Three generations of missionaries in the Brazil Fortaleza East Mission:
My dad (the missionary that trained me), Elder Etchichury (seated), Me (standing), my son (the missionary I am training), Elder Oliveira (on the lap of his grandpa).
|The Americans watching conference.|
|outside the fortaleza vs ceará game, which gets crazy|