Christopher's release date is November 14th and we will be leaving here on the 13th and will be coming home the day before Thanksgiving! We are so excited to see him and get to see where he has been sharing the gospel and meet those who have become special to him and to us.
Missão Brasil Rio de Janeiro Atualização 9/24/2012
This week was a very good and trying week for us. We still didn´t have the results that we´d hoped for though.
Thursday began a new class that we were inspired to do in the chapel, called 3 simple ways to become a happier family. We´re doing all the propaganda close to the chapel to bring these families there every Thursday to participate in the class. This week the class was a little bit small, just Edmilson & Liliane, and their daughter, and Jorge & Maria, a recent convert couple that we really like. But, the class was very good, especially for Edmilson & Liliane, who haven´t been to church still. He has been emergency called to work every week for the last 3 weeks, and for this hasn´t been able to actually go to sacrament mtg. But... They really liked the class, really liked the atmosphere in the chapel, and are excited to return this Thursday for our next class. We have an appointment tomorrow night with them.
The weather here has been strange as all get out. this week reached a whopping 45 degrees. To give you an idea, it was soo hot that it was impossible to work like normal, and there was absolutely nobody in the streets. The next day we were down to 27 degrees and raining. We got flooded out where we are the day before last, and I think that last night it got down to 18. Pray that we don´t get fried from the inside out this week
Tonight we will be bringing the Elders from Abolição to our area to do the baptism interview for Maria José and Francisco. Their papers have left the wedding office, and they will be married and baptized this Saturday at 10 o´clock in the morning. We were really wanting to baptize this other family with them, but they weren´t able to go to church this week.
I don´t know if you found anything else out, but I still say that it is better to buy all the fares at the rodoviaria the day that you want to go to that place. Let me know any place in particular that you will want to visit here, like RioZoo, or Cristo Redentor for example. You guys have probably been looking at all the tourist sites for the last two years. For me, Its just where I live. You know how that goes - you usually don´t end up seeing hardly anywhere where you live. Kinda like living close to the "greatest snow on earth", yet we never ski :)
Let me know when you find out about Thomas´s address. I can´t send Emails to him, and I probably will only have time to send him one letter in the MTC. (How much time does it usually take for you to receive letters from here?)
Missão Brasil Rio de Janeiro Atualização 10/1/2012
First off, Happy Birthday Mom!!! Hope that your birthday was a good one.
Our new area is very different, and its taking some time to adjust. I had forgotten how much the area out here looks like the old country towns that we have in the west of the U.S. There are a ton of people here in the streets, and most of the people were born and raised here, so its a whole different experience finding and teaching the gospel to these people. We´re going full force trying to find more people who will progress. We found a very interested family, that the only problem that we´re having is finding time in which they can meet with us. Due to many things, we weren´t able to bring them to conference on Sunday, but I´m crossing my fingers that he watched it online at his house.
I still want to do divisions with the other districts in Vila Nova and Campo Grande. Maybe I will get to give a quick "hello' to some of the people that we baptized. I know for a fact that there are some who aren´t there anymore. (Like Nora) She moved quite a while ago, and nobody seems to know where she went. I haven´t been able to talk to her for about a year now, so who knows?
I really liked this conference. There is something really important behind the new changes that they are making with the age requirements to serve. We are needing many missionaries.
Well, I´ve got to go and resolve another issue now :)
Last night we found a really neat family to teach. :) Throughout my mission, I´ve seen many many miracles and things happening so that you know that the person that you are teaching needs to be baptized. Unfortunately, not everyone that sees a miracle or receives an answer chooses to follow. We´re trying to get quite a few families baptized before November. The only hinderance is the cost of marriage where we are, its a little ridiculous. Last night we had the idea to visit the family of Thiago, someone who we´ve taught once, but never really felt we needed to return. We felt inspired to return and get to know his family. His wife, Tatianna, said that as we arrived, she had just finished praying to know what to do. She knows that she has to go to church, but doesn´t feel good with any of the churches in the bairro. Thats when we arrived. We taught them, even taught them in the dark, because their light was cut this week, and nobody returned to connect it up again. What a great experience.
We´re having a blast with the members here. We´re doing a lot of things to try and teach just referrals. This Saturday, President Costa sent a letter to all the stakes in Brasil. We´re gonna have an activity that is Brasil-wide, where every single member and their leaders are going to meet in the chapel, and start a project of distributing pass-along cards. They´ve been doing a lot of maintenance in São Paulo in the call center that they have there to be able to immediately attend any and all calls that they get from the pass-along cards. We´ve been promised that this will produce many results because of much prayer and fasting on our part.
Mom, your birthday present is here with me waiting for you to come get it :)
Hey, photos are gonna be a little difficult for the time being, because my USB adapter broke. I´ll see what I can do though.
This week was a very tiring week. Its been really really hot here lately, which makes things go a lot slower, and drag a little bit. Now we´re off daylight savings time, which means that the days are getting to stay hotter later in the afternoon. (and instead of them being 3 hours time difference from us they are now 5!)
Was a good week though. Saturday, we had the nation wide pass-along card day. The ward got involved, and we left Saturday morning to pass out cards to everyone. We had a really good reaction from people in the street. They sure treat the members a little better than they do the missionaries :) LOL. It got the whole ward excited at least. Bishop says that he wants to try and do this project again next week as well. We´ll see how it goes.
We´ve been teaching a bunch of new families this week. For one thing or another, nobody came to church. It can be a real sacrifice for investigators to come to church for the first time. One lady that came to church yesterday, Lourdes, really liked it. She didn´t want to come in the first place, because of all the nonsense she´s heard about the church. Our upstairs neighbor, Cecilha, really helped out with that during the lesson, and we convinced her to come.
Have a great week..
Love, Elder Snyder