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Monday, September 29, 2014

Week 26 - My new area, Mogi das Cruzes

My new companion is a way funny dude. The branch [small congregation] has about 45 members.  The new area had zero people in the teaching pool when I arrived so I’ve been pretty busy trying to find people to teach. We set aside one entire day this week to do contacting and of coarse it ended up raining the entire day.

I actually don’t live in my area.  I live in Brás Cubas.  I walk an hour everyday to get to my area.  Everything is hilly.  Nothing is flat here.  I took some pictures. The area is pretty new so the mission hasn’t found a house yet. My companion and I are house hunting.

My friend from Monumento said my new area would be in the jungle but the reality is it’s not. There are mountains and trees but where the people live is just like a giant subdivision.

Yesterday at church I walked into the chapel and the second counselor came up to me and told me that they didn’t have anyone to speak.  He asked me to talk. I was nervous because I literally had no time to prepare but all went well. I spoke on missionary work.

Monday, September 22, 2014

Week 25 - Transferred, Monkeys, and Coconuts!

I am being transferred tomorrow. I’m getting transferred to the interior, which I am excited about! I’ll be in the jungle!!! I’m transferring to an area called Mogi das Cruzes. My branch or area is called Jardim Ivete. My companion will be Elder Farias. I don’t know him. He started in the same group as Elder G. Santos and Elder Faustino. Elder G. Santos says he is a way cool person.

Elder Faustino was heading to São José dos Campos today.  He had to pass through Mogi to get there and he called me while he was on the train.  He said its just completely forested there. I have no idea what it will be like. It’s the city where the interior starts so I could have some part of the city or could just be in the forest but a good thing its the coldest area in the mission!

I almost bought a cart today for my luggage because I don’t know if the roads in Mogi will be paved and it’s mountainous. I don’t want my suitcases to get ruined. I also need a new backpack because mine ripped.

I GOT A SWEET VIDEO OF THE MONKEYS!!! They didn’t come shake my hand like the other time when I didn’t have my camera but in this video they were pretty close up.

If you want coconut milk there are people on the street and that sell coconuts.  They just chop them open and you drink the coconut milk. After, they cut it again and you eat the coconut jelly. Its so good!

Monday, September 15, 2014

Week 24 - The gospel blesses lives!

Elder G. Santos and I have taught 39 new investigators this transfer!  Yesterday was really good for us!  At church the people we were expecting didn’t end up coming but we had new people visit! This women and her daughter were researching the church and saved the address.  They came Sunday and are just great! Having people research the church on the Internet is almost unheard of!

Elder Faustino and Elder Diaz were here yesterday because Elder Diaz is going home next week and the mission president said he could visit the area with another elder.  Elder Faustino volunteered of course.  It was way fun! We visited many families.  The last family we visited was a family that Elder Diaz helped teach and baptize the non-member father.  The family bore their testimonies to us about how grateful they were for the missionaries and how the gospel has blessed their lives. It was way cool to hear.

This week I think the biggest thing I noticed is how the gospel affects families and how much happier they are.  There is such a big difference seeing and teaching families that don’t have the gospel.  Seeing it just makes you desire to preach the gospel to more people.

I’m having trouble sleeping at night.  It’s so freaking hot.   It’s like 94 degrees here at 10:00 am in the morning.  If I go to the interior next week it will be even hotter.  I actually feel like I need to use sunscreen.  I’m glad there was some in our house because I’m never going to buy it.  It’s very expensive.  (like $R50) Because it’s so hot I’ve been buying a ton of coconut water and all kinds of fruit juices.  It’s just like heaven on earth!

It’s actually dry in São Paulo plus we are in a drought.   The reservoirs are low.   Don’t worry.   We still have water in our house.

I had two crazy bad noses bleeds this week. It freaked out Elder G. Santos so he called Fabio (The mission doctor) Fabio said if it gets worse they will cauterize my nose.

Oh! I shook hands with the monkeys in the museu the other day!!!  Of coarse it was the only day I didn't have my camera...

Monday, September 8, 2014

Week 23 - Hard work and a new mission president

This week was good! We worked so hard! Elder G. Santos and I are exhausted! Our teaching pool is huge.  We already have plans set through the next two weeks.  We had six solid investigators come to church Sunday.  We invited five other potential investigators to church and one came!

It has been really cool this week seeing the gospel bless families. Elder G. Santos and I gave priesthood blessings to many faithful sons and daughters of God seeking help.  I saw blessings flow into their lives.  It was really cool!

Grandpa will be proud of me. A lot of the missionaries have harmonicas and play them.  The other day I bought a harmonica and have been jamming with Elder G. Santos.  [Dallen’s grandfather is an avid harmonica player]

I got to meet my new mission president this week. He is a seasoned leader and is way funny! He is way cool! He served in Brazil when there was only one mission in the country. You can tell he has experience and he will be a great asset to this mission.

Monday, September 1, 2014

Week 22 - Pancakes, sugar cane, and broken showers.

As far as me week went it was really good! We are busy and are teaching a ton of people. Unfortunately none of our investigators came to church this week.  One of the families came to the primary [young children’s] activity Saturday. Primary activities here are way cool.  Each ward [congregation] in the stake [group of congregations in a geographic area] did a choreographed dance from the music of a Disney film and it was way fun!

Down in Brazil the showerhead has resistors in it that heat the water as it exits.  Our resistors broke Tuesday so this entire week I have either taken a freezing cold shower or I get a pot of water and heat it up to shower or wash the clothes. It’s not very fun.  We bought new resistors and tried to fix the showerhead but that just turned our showerhead into a light bulb for a couple of seconds before it broke again.

The weather has been really weird but never terrible for the most part.  It’s been nice because its not super hot and 60 degrees isn’t cold to me.

There is the drink here called cana (Sugar cane) and I’m freaking addicted!!! They have this special machine that smashes the sugar cane to get a liquid.  They take this and then put a little lime juice in and it’s the best!

I made pancakes for Elder G. Santos the other day and they were delicious!!! I made an orange flavored syrup and it’s so good! Elder G. Santos is just amazing!!! He is the perfect companion!