Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Letter #87

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!
It was super cool to talk with you all on Christmas, and it looks like everything is going well!  Thanks for the pictures of Sinter Klaas and the new journal.  Of the two Christmases that I've had on the mission, this one was the best.

I feel kind of sick, because I ate a lot of chocolate.  But I could have worse health problems than that.  Here I am complaining about a tummy ache because I ate too much chocolate when as we speak there are probably a kajillion people having a double-triple heart-to-lung tri-pass, which is almost certainly fatal.

Love you much,

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Letter #86

This week has been a good one.  Today has been especially good, because it's P-day and I've been reading stories of my ancestors on FamilySearch.  It's literally incredible some of the stuff that happened with them.  Some of the people that had the best stories were Jannigje De With, Jonathon Collins Crapo, and Peter Crapo.  This stuff is so good that you could make a movie out of it.  I translated to Portuguese one story from the life of Jannigje De With and I'm going to use it with one of our investigators.  I think i'm going to do the same thing with a few other stories as well.  There's one story with Jonathon Collins Crapo where he decides not to drink coffee and it makes all the difference.

This week was pretty stressful, we had to get everything ready for the Christmas Conferences and it was the first time we had ever done a conference of this size.  A lot of stuff went wrong, but in the end everything worked out and it ended up being a good experience.  Christmas is awesome!  I'm super excited to open up that little green package that Mom sent me.

We are getting used to our area, and the last missionaries that served in it didn't leave too much for us, so we're starting from scratch.  We had some great experiences where we were able to find some people, we just need to find the time to visit and help these people progress.  The other day we prayed to find somebody to teach and the very first door accepted us and said we could come back.  God's preparing his children!

We got a huge gift basket from one of our recent converts the other day and I've probably eaten my weight in chocolate already.  Maybe it's good that I extended the mish so that I can work off the kilos that I'm gonna gain during the Christmas season.  On Christmas we're going to make a huge American breakfast.

In closing, I'm going to include a quote from my great grandmother, Jannigje

“Loved ones, in this Church we can learn where we came from, the goal of living on the earth, and where we are going when we shall leave this earth, and also many other problems will become clear to us, which we could learn from the bible but did not understand, because we did not have an explanation for it.
“Many mistakes have I made in these five years since I became a member of the Church, but this I know, if we sincerely regret the ill we have done to God and men and we confess our guilt not only to God but also to those we have hurt through word or deed, it certainly will be forgiven. May we always remember more the warning of our Savior given in the garden of Gethsemane: watch and pray so that you may not be tempted, then we will make less mistakes, and go through life happier.”

Much love, 

Letter #85

I'm sorry if I scared you with my last letter.  I want you to know that we are absolutely safe, nothing happened and nothing is going to happen.  I was transferred to a new area, which I included a picture of.  I can assure you that nothing will happen in this new area because it's probably the richest area that I've ever seen in Brazil.

It was pretty funny our first day in our new area.  It was the exact opposite of our last one.  Our old area was Ala Ipiranga and our new one is Ala Irajá.  I would like to denote a few differences between the two.

1.  In our new area, the parks have ponds with fish instead of puddles with diapers.
2.  In our new area, people participate in running teams instead of drinking circles
3.  In our new area, there are fancy condominiums instead of unfinished brick houses
4.  In our new area, people have money and teeth instead of empty pockets and gummy mouths
5.  In our new area, people have shitzus with ribbons instead of wild jackals that eat trash
6.  In our new area, people have garages to fit five cars instead of deformed garage doors to fit the cars.
7.  In our new area, we talk with intercoms instead of talking with people.
8.  In our new area, people eat dry leafy greens instead of perfect, dripping barbecue.
9.  In our new area, thirst is drowned instead of quenched
10. In our new area, people try to sell us into pyramid schemes instead of saying that they lost their job.
11. In our new area, people have jobs instead of twelve laughing kids.
12. In our new area, the gospel is needed just like it was in the last one.

I loved my last area, the people we absolutely greaty, but I really am excited to try out a new environment to teach.  Our ward is super great, I am really excited to be there.  There are a lot of people that speak English, we're even going to teach in English tonight.  It will be good practice for Elder Zolet.

This week was super busy.  We had to supervise transfers as well as the reception of all the new missionaries.  It was a lot of fun to see the new missionaries showing up so excited about the work, straight out from the MTC.  Some of them were saying, "Wow, I can't wait to knock on some doors, when are we going to go tracting?"  It was pretty funny.

Today we're going to go to a sushi buffet.  We'll see how it goes.

I love you all so much!

Elder Vawdrey's Birthday