Sunday, May 5, 2013

4 March 2013   6 Months Out

Hello Family and Friends,

If you didn't notice I've been out for 6 months which means I'm 1/4 into the mission. It feels like only a month or two since I left home, but at the same time it feels like forever. It is hard to describe but anyone that has ever served a mission should know what I mean. They call the six month mark "Bump Day," and the next milestone will be "Hump Day" which is one year out. After the 1 year mark the climbing portion is over and it's all down hill from then on.
I would like to give an update on the language. I'm happy to say that I feel like I have a good handle on the lingo now. I can speak and understand like a normal human being. It definitely isn't always perfect but it is amazing how much things change in just a few weeks, now imagine another year and half.
This week was "Carbo Moto" here in Butiá. To make a long story short, basically every wanna be rocker and his motorcycle come to Butiá once a year to show off their wheels. It was pretty funny to see these old men with old rock show t-shirts, beer bellies, and Harleys roaming around Butiá. Also, the young guns came into town with their Kawasaki ninja bikes making a whole lot of noise. All these people set up tents in the town center and just made a ruckus for about 4 days straight. There were live bands playing, greasy food, and kids riding ninja bikes while standing. I felt like I was back in the US!!!
The party was cut short though. Some members of the branch decided to fast for rain in order to drown out the party Sunday. And what do you know, Sunday rained harder than I have ever seen it. It rained from early Sunday morning until this morning. Needless to say we had our normal Sunday meetings in peace.
We had 2 investigators and 1 inactive show up to church. I judge our weekly success by whether or not we had investigators or inactives at church. Our investigators names are Pricila and Adriana. Pricila is a young mother of two kids. She is progressing really well, she even fasted with us this Sunday and gave a generous fast offering!!! That´s a first for me on the mission. She loves having us over for the lessons. I'm hoping we can get her baptized by the end of the month, but she always mentions that she does not think she is ready to take on all the commandments that come with baptism, but she doesn't have a problem with any of them. Greg if you are reading this maybe you can help us out. Adriana is an older lady with 3 kids all of baptism age. The only problem is that she has been smoking since her adolescence and now her 16 year old son has followed suite. She really enjoyed church this Sunday and already knows that the church is true. Hopefully her experience at church can help motivate her to quit. If she is baptized the kids will be baptized as well. Joe has been on vacation the past two weeks so we had to reschedule his baptism. There will be another "Natal Branco" in our zone at the end of this month. That means that all the missionaries will bring their investigators to one location to be baptized. We are fasting and praying to meet a goal of two baptisms on Natal Branco. It will be a serious challenge but we are ready to get at it.
Lastly, Happy Birthday to Jessie!!! I hope you have a wonderful birthday and a even better birthday week. Stay safe, have fun. I received the Valentines parcel you all sent. Thank you so much for everything. I enjoyed the letter Mom wrote me. The pants you sent are super tight which is strange because they say that they are the same size as my other pants so I'm not sure what happened. Oh well, I have a goal now to one day fit into them, and it is a necessary goal seeing that I don't have the girlish figure as I once had. I don't know what they put in the food here, its incredible how much weight I have gained. I hope I'm getting taller because I don't look that fat, but I think I'm just in denial. I closed in on two hundred pounds the other day. It is crazy because I'm eating like 2/3 of what I used to eat. If I keeping gaining weight I'm going to stop blessing my food. Yes mom, the road I live on is a dirt road, there is always a bunch of random horses and cows roaming around it which is pretty cool. And the very last thing is those spiders I told you all about in the last email, well I killed them all. I was just starting to like them when all of sudden I saw the most vicious one yet right next to my bed. That spider gave me the revelation I needed, so I got a can of AXE spray deodorant and a lighter and heated the place up. It reminded me of one of the Aliens movies. Me with a mini flame thrower, walking in the dark halls of our house, with these crazy creatures crawling all around me. It was intense.
Anyways got to go,

Love Elder Miller

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