This week went by so quickly. It was another tough week but it had its perks. The big news is that on 8th of this month I will baptizing an investigator! Our investigator is Shaelly, a 17 year old girl. She is the another grandchild of that one grandmother I talked a little about in a previous letter, and is a friend of Nara. We still have a couple more lessons to teach her but she is progressing and is stoked to be baptized. If everything works out the way we planned I will have my first baptism before my next letter.
Renatta is scheduled to be baptized also. She is planning on the 22nd of this month. This would be very special because this is the day of "Natal Branco" which means white christmas. It is very cool because all the missionaries from the surrounding zones are coming to the stake center in Porto Alegre with their invertigators to baptize. There should be a lot of people, missionaries and investigators, all wearing white and getting baptized. It reminds me of the story in the Book of Mormon where Alma is in the waters of Mormon and he is just baptizing one person after the other, crazy!
This week I going to talk about my daily schedule. Every day the clock starts ringing at 6:30 on the dot. I get up as fast as I can because if I do not I will probably fall right back asleep. Once I'm up I say a prayer and then hit the Book of Mormon, in English, for a solid 30 minutes. Then I take a shower, make myself look pretty, make something to eat, and then iron the shirt I'm going to sweat in that day. Usually once I have made it this far it is 8:00 on the dot. Next, I hit the Book of Mormon, in Portuguese, for 30 minutes and then switch over to Preach my Gospel where I study, read, and write out phrases in Portuguese so I have something to say regarding the lesson we will teach that day. At 9:00 I switch over to companionship study. Right now we are studying "The First 12 Weeks" which is for all new missionaries. It teaches how we should approach people, what to look for while teaching, how to feel the spirit and know what to say etc.. After this Elder Queiroz and I practice a lesson or two. It can be rough for me at times because I get lost in thought or tangled up in the language. By now it is close to 11:30 and time to go to lunch. It takes us at least 20 minutes to walk anywhere in our area. We have lunch with a member and leave with a message which we always tie into missionary work. Elder Queiroz and I switch off days giving the message. Why missionary work? This is because members are the most powerful tool in our arsenal. We need them to spread the word, pretty much all our investigators are references. After lunch is terrible because we are so full and it is flippin hot outside and no one wants clapping outside their fence. This is how we knock doors in Brazil, clapping outside their house haha. Generally, we have three or four appointments throughout the day. These appointments are either investigators, less-actives, or recent converts. The time in between is for meetings, walking, talking, or doctor appointments for Elder Queiroz. They never seem to end, maybe there is more to the story, who knows, but it burns through my cash. Back to the Horario, or schedule. After all the this we make our way back to the appartment, 9ish, plan, snack, shower, and go to bed. During this time I have either the Bible or Principles of the Gospel open and I read and study until I can't keep my eyes open, then I crash at 10:30. Rinse and repeat.
I have found an unquenchable thirst for gospel knowledge since I got out here on the mission. Whenever we have down time Im reading something. The scriptures have a whole new light to them since I have become a missionary, it is like I'm reading everything for the first time. I think this is why I am so fascinated by them now, I'm learning a lot. Also, I really want to increase this knowledge so that people will recognize that I am a representative of Christ, and so that I can anwser every question given to me. Same goes for Portuguese. Im trying my hardest to pick-up the language as quickly as possible. Whenever I'm listening in a conservsation I have a dictionary that I am constantly flipping through.
Yep, this is a normal day for me. P-Day I get up and clean the apartment. I sweep the floor, wash the dishes, and organize all my stuff. If I'm luckly I will have some time to chill, write letters etc. but usually Elder Queiroz has something he wants to do in the city center or something. During the day we find a little internet booth and write to our families. By six o' clock we are back at it, either a teaching appointment or family home evening.
The work is good, always wishing for more. I have heard that some of my friends here in Brazil are starting to check out my Facebook. The internet is a pretty amazing place connecting pretty much everyone in the world to each other. I also realize that it is very dangerous to have anything on the internet these days. I'm taking a lot of caution with what I put in these emails because I know that they will be on my blog. Members or investigators can easily copy and paste anything put on my blog or Facebook into an online translator. The spiritual and sacred moments on my mission are kept in my journal for people to see one day. If I feel like I need to share some experience I will send a seperate email for family and close friends to read.
That's it for now, wish me luck this week.