Monday, December 30, 2013

December 30, 2013, Brazil Goiania Mission, Uberlandia Week 48

Dear Family,

Hey guys!!!!!! Lol this week was super funny hahahahaha. I loved talking with you guys on Skype and seeing all of you on Christmas! It was honestly so hard to say goodbye. I was thinking this time around that I wasn´t going to cry but then I started bearing my testimony and for some reason I just lost it haha. Irmã Paula was bawling as well haha you guys couldn´t see her in the background, but she totally started crying. It was so good! I don´t remember if I said thank you for the packages but thank you, thank you, thank you so much!!! You have no idea what those packages mean to me.

Colin and his companion on Skype
Merry Christmas Colin
Sooooooo....... my birthday. Yeah..... haha one of the most interesting birthdays of my life. It was great. I think it´s just the greatest present ever to be throwing up all day because of food poisoning! Haha yeah I haven´t thrown up since I was like 8? It´s the worst feeling ever(especially when you ate Swedish fish the night before and that´s what you see in your vomit the next morning haha. So Elder Neeley, Elder Loureiro, and me all got sick that day and we were just dying haha with diarrhea and vomiting all day. I got the worst bit of the diarrhea, and Elder Loureiro got the worst bit with the vomiting lolz for days. Everyone thinks that it was because of the mayonnaise that they put on the salad on Christmas. Our lunch also fell through on my birthday so I ended up eating one apple for lunch. It was my favorite birthday that I´ve ever had haha. I had no appetite either to eat anything and we still had to work that day. But I´m over it and I´m fine now with my stomach and everything haha. It was so funny. Of course, this would only happen on my birthday. IT WAS JUST FOOD POISONING. Don´t worry about anything. 

Me after totally destroying the banheiro, feeling like total dump on my barfday.

This week we had 4 investigators and 1 less active who went to church. It was good! Usually there should be a lot more, but the members were really happy with it, because usually they don´t have a ton of investigators there. We had Arley, who is this 18 year old, who I told you about that will be baptized on Saturday! We had two kids, and their mom, Elisangela (but Elisangela had to work on sunday) has a baptismal date on the 18th, and an elderly lady named Flora, who went to church for the first time yesterday and she LOVED it. We went and visited her after church and she had a lot of family over. There was this other lady there that was thinking that our church was just another church that the pastors just scream and preach the entire time, and Flora was like defending it and everything. She invited her to come to church with her the next week! Haha it was awesome. The lady actually accepted the offer at the end, so we´ll see what happens lol. But Flora told us the other day that we had a countenance that´s different from everybody else´s. She told us that she has so much trust in us. I think it was because of the blessing I gave her the other day. She has super bad back problems, and so a member asked us to give Flora a blessing. I gave one to her, and ever since then, she has been loving our visits and gained a lot of trust in us. It´s amazing to see the power of a Priesthood Blessing and how it helps people according to their faith. I´m really excited for her and she´ll be a great investigator.

Other than that, we didn´t do anything for my birthday (which I´m fine with! Don´t worry about me haha) and Christmas was awesome. Love you guys so much and thank you for all your support!  Os amo demais!
Brown Santa that an Elder gave me for Christmas hahahaha

 Elder Lee and Colin

Alguns Elderes lolz

Elder Thomas with Presidente Kuceki creepin in the background hahaha

Elder Hanson

Monday, December 23, 2013

December 23, 2013 ~ Brazil Goiania Mission, Uberlandia ~ Week 47

Dear Family,,

Hey guys! I was transferred, but just to the other ward in Uberlândia in the same church. I´m still living in the same house haha. The ward is called Parque do Sabiá. This ward is a lot more challenging, according to other missionaries that have passed by here, because it is the smallest area in the mission (last year the ward had 3 baptisms throughout the entire year) but I´m excited for the challenge! I´ve been feeling like I could have tried even harder with the Aurora ward, and so I´m repentive (not sure if this is a word haha) and I want to change this ward. On Sunday there were 28 people at church. Crazy! But I am super blessed to be put in a ward that´s challenging and I´ll just put all my faith in the Lord and I know that I´ll have success.

My companion now is Elder Neeley, who is American haha and I´m finishing out his training because he had already been trained for six weeks, but now I´ll finish it out. He´s from Connecticut and he´s the missionary that I told you guys about who had a lot of  trouble with his back. He´s improving now, and I´m trying my best to help him with everything.

We went to Goiânia on Tuesday for the Christmas devotional and it was really good. We had transfers right after and it was crazy! Haha it was really irreverent too and it was in the chapel. But everyone was freaking out because they called two new assistants (one of them is Elder Moreno, the missionary that I lived with in Goiania) and it was just nuts haha. Elder Loureiro was made District Leader here and he´s just awesome. I´ll miss being companions with him.

On Christmas, I´ll skype you guys at 5 o clock Brazil time (which I think is noon back home?) and so I´ll just make a new skype at the members house because I don´t remember my password haha but this time, it will only be for 40 minutes. :(. Dumb! But it´ll be great still.

I can´t wait to see you guys on Christmas! Thank you so much for the packages and the letters and everything. I´m so blessed to have a family like you guys and I hope you have a great Christmas! It literally does not feel like Christmas at all down here haha because it´s so flippin hot. Love you guys!

Elder Hanson

Monday, December 16, 2013

December 16, 2013 ~ Brazil Goiania Mission, Uberlandia ~ Week 46

Dear Family,

Sooooo........ guess what........ I think I´m going to be transferred again haha. Already! The zone leaders called me on Saturday (which is strange, because usually the assistants call and tell us if we´re transferred or not) and told me that I was going to be transferred this week. So weird! I´ve only been in Uberlandia for one transfer! We´re going to Goiânia this week on Tuesday and they´ll do the transfers there. There´s also going to be a Christmas devotional there with all the missionaries of the mission and so that should be good. I'm nervous to see where I get transferred! The weird thing is that they told me not to pack my bags. They said the missionaries that were transferred in Uberlândia will come back to get their things and then go to their new areas. I have no idea what´s happening! They´ve never done transfers like this before.
The sad thing about being transferred from this area is that I´ll miss the baptism this week :(. We marked a baptismal date with this girl that is 16 years old and I think I told you guys about her last week. She doesn´t have a ton of support from her family and the members that are helping fellowship her are having a tough time coming to church. So it´s kind of rough, but I know that everything will work out. 

We had interviews with President Kuceki this past week and I really liked my interview with him. Every time I talk to him, I feel so relieved, and I just feel like everything will go better from here on out. I wish I could talk to him every day haha. But they had us do what is called a Santificação Pessoal (personal cleansing) which is when you start a fast, pray, and then during your fast, notice the things that are preventing you from growing spiritually. For me, some of these things may seem harmless, but they really do take your mind of the work. Like music, sports, things like that. So I did this and it honestly is SO HARD. I never realized how much I think about music or sometimes I sing music and don´t even realize it haha. So then after the fast, you go 40 days without doing those things that prevent you from growing spiritually. I´m trying my best with it and I know that I'll be able to grow faster and that I´ll have more success with this. 

A Cheesy Christmas photo that the mission asked us to send in. lolz for days!
I have no idea what´s going to happen now with the whole Skype thing because I´m going to a new area. I didn´t think that I would be transferred so I set it up with Paula (the member in our ward that sent you an email), but now that won´t work out haha. I'll let you know next week haha. Don´t worry! Tudo vai dar certo kkkkk. I received two of the 5 packages this week so that means I won´t get the rest of them for awhile. But whatevs, I´ll get them sooner or later lol.

Love you guys! Thank you so much for all the support and I can´t wait to talk with you guys on Christmas! Tchau!

Elder Hanson
A Family of recent converts that were baptized last February and they are super strong in the church and they are preparing to go to the temple this February.

Monday, December 9, 2013

December 9, 2013 ~ Brazil Goiania Mission, Uberlandia ~ Week 45

Dear Family,

This week was about the same as last week. Nothing too exciting happened haha. We did have this girl go to church this week who is really nice. She's 16 years old and she´s a relative of some members in our ward. The only problem is, that those members are inactive :(. We were teaching them throughout this week and they all said that they would go to church, but we ended up having to go and get her because the members didn´t go. Dumb! It would be so much easier for her to go, if she had the support. We haven´t invited her to be baptized yet because she is a part of another church and we wanted to wait until she went to church first. But she came to church, so we should mark a date with her either today or tomorrow. I just hope that we can reactivate those members too.

In Rio Verde, everybody was from the Assembleia de Deus, but in Uberlândia, everyone is from the Congregação no Brasil. Everyone in that church is super firm in it. That´s what makes this area a little harder than Rio Verde Popular. But I still have the faith that everything will work out with these people. 

We had a Christmas party in the ward this past week as well. The president of the primary was putting on this nativity scene with the primary and she asked me to play the piano for them, so I did lol. They had this HUGE dinner as well after. But guess what it was? Haha rice, beans, a type of salad, meat, and guarana haha. It was actually really good though. 

Killin' it at the Fedal de Natal with Elder Loureiro

Guarana Drink
I´m not entirely sure yet on the whole Skype thing because I still don't know if I´ll be transferred or not. I´ll let you guys know on everything.

Oh! Funny story lol. Yesterday we passed by this lady´s house to teach her for the first time, and her husband yelled when we knocked on her door "who is it?" and then we said "the missionaries" and he was like "I don´t know who you are!" and after we heard him inside the house grabbing something, he opened the door slightly and he was turned to the side with a cigarette in one hand. But then he opened the door all the way and showed us this giant knife haha. We were like Whoa! Take it easy! It was so funny. He didn´t let us in needless to say haha but after he was like "Sorry about that, I´ve got problems in my mind" And we were like "No it´s alright! We´ll come back another day." 

Love you guys! I can´t wait to talk to you all on Christmas! It´s sooo weird without snow and it´s five million degrees everyday haha. Love you Tchauzinho!

Elder Hanson
What the trick is this?

Monday, December 2, 2013

December 2, 2013 ~ Goiania Brazil Mission, Uberlandia ~ Week 44

Dear Family,

This week was a little bit rough. The zone leaders asked us to really focus on finding new people to teach. So this is what I had in my head all week, and we barely found anybody new to teach. We only had one person at Church on Sunday. I got super frustrated with everything because I felt like I worked so freaking hard this week trying to find new people. But this morning, my District Leader called me and told me that he feels like our desires were in the wrong place. We have been so focused on the Numbers, that we weren't as concerned with the people. I thought about that awhile, and then I studied more about it during Personal Study and found some scriptures that helped me understand this more. In Doctrine and Covenants 130: I think 19-23, it talks about obedience. How we are only blessed, when we are obedient to His laws. Haha I don't know, my whole life I guess I never fully understood this. Our purpose as missionaries is to help others Come unto Christ. I wish I would've more fully realized this before, but I need to have deeper love for all of Gods Children. My Companion and I will only be able to help others Come Unto Christ as we are obedient and when we really care about the Salvation of these people. Does that make sense? I'm feeling like a tard right now haha because I have a hard time expressing my thoughts in English now. But from now on, I care about the Salvation of these souls sincerely, not just numbers.

Eu sei que com todo o meu coracao que esta e a lgreja de NOSSA Salvador e Redentor, Jesus Cristo, Estou muito Feliz na  missao! Estou muito animado para ajudar estas pessoas a conhecer o Evangelho. Eu amo este Evangelho. Sei que Jesus Cristo a Deus apareceram a Joseph Smith, e por meio dele, Jesus Cristo  restaurou a Igreja Dele aqui na Terra. A missao e tao difficult, mass realmente, vale apnea. Obrigado por Seu apoio e sua ajuda com todas coisas! Voces vao ser muito abencoados durante minha missao tambem. Vou fazer meu melhor com todas as coisas kkkkkkk. English Translation: I know with all my heart that The Church of Jesus Christ Of Latter-day Saints is true and it's the Church of our Savior and Redeemer. I am very happy to be on my mission. I'm excited to help these people know The Gospel. I love this Gospel. I know that Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ appeared to Joseph Smith and through him, Jesus restored His Church here on earth. The mission is so difficult but it is so worth it. Thanks for your support and help with everything! You will be greatly blessed during my mission as well. I'll do my very best with everything.

Love you guys!!! Hope everything is going well with you. I'm glad Catching Fire was Awesome. I don't know about the Skype thing because I don't know if I'll be transferred or not before Christmas. Tchau!

You'll love this awkward as poop picture showing off my new altered pants. Lolz for days!

Elder Hanson

Monday, November 25, 2013

November 25, 2013 ~ Goiania Brazil Mission, Uberlandia ~ Week 43

MOM DIDNT SEND ME AN EMAIL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! NO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!  Haha what the heck? That just totally shattered my entire Universe. It's okay mom. I Still love you. But I'm so sad that mom didn't email me. :(  (This is Colin's mom! I did email him but I accidentally sent his email to his instead of his account. I feel horrible!!! I'm like the worst mom ever. We emailed the mission office to tell Colin what happened.)

This week was not my favorite week in the entire world. Our Freaking investigator (Acinom-name chane) was so excited about her baptism and then all of the sudden on Friday she was like, "Oh Eu Quercia falafel com os irmaos, eu nao query conhecer sua igreja mais." ( This means- I wanted to talk with you guys, I don't want to know anything more about your church.) So Sad! She didn't even give us a reason why and then she didn't show up for church, so there's not a whole lot we can do. The Adversary at work again. I was so bummed after she told us :(. But everything will be fine.

We are teaching these two rapazes (young men) who have been to church a few times, but they still aren't sure about being baptized. Their names are Jeferson and Lucas. They are really cool! We are trying to encourage them to read the Book of Mormon and to come to Church. We have a new rule in the Mission that if you're teaching somebody under 15 years old, they can't be baptized for 3 months, unless they have a parent that's being baptized with them. Jeferson is 15 and Lucas is 13, so that makes it a little hard. Which means, this week will be spent on finding new people to teach. We'll keep working on the boys though.

I'm going in today to get my pants altered hahahaha. Yesterday, my suit pants were literally falling off of me lol. I have 5 or 6 pants to alter! The other two are fitting fine. I'm so excited to get them altered, you have no idea. There's this lady in the ward that's going to do it, so I don't think she'll make me pay for it, but I don't know.

Other than that, nothing else happened. My companion and I are getting along great. They say I can speak the language really well! Everyone tells me that they only know that I'm American because of my hair lol. Have a great week!

Love you guys! Tchau!

Elder Hanson

Monday, November 18, 2013

November 18, 2013 ~ Goiania Brazil Mission, Uberlandia ~ Week 42

Dear Famly,

Good News!!!! Rairanne finally was able to be baptized :)  Elder Thomas & I marked her baptism date again right before I was transferred, so I wasn't able to baptize her, but I saw pictures of her from Elder Thomas at our Conference in Goiania, anyway, she went under the water all the way.  It was her Fourth try haha because she was afraid of the water. She was baptized in Presidente's Carlos pool. I'm super happy for her and her family.

Rairanne (Next to Colin)

Apartment where we planned and studied in Rio Verde

Outside Colin's house in Rio Verde (Check out the missionary shoes!)

Nothing really happened this week. Haha I feel like I was just in this Internet cafe like two days ago, writing you guys. I really don't have too much to write about this week :/ sorry! We only had 3 days of proselyting this week, because we went to Goiania for that Conference. We finally found some new people to teach on Sunday. That always happens, we find people on Sunday right after Church has ended for the week.

My area is not very big. At least it doesn't feel nearly as big as my area in Rio Verde. My area was massive there! So far  I've only been sent to very humble areas in Uberlandia. there's an area that I think I told you guys about last week that's a favela (ask Flavia what a Favela is). It seriously is so poor. We are teaching a wonderful family there and they went to church :). But seriously, count your blessings.

Favela in Uberlandia

People in Uberlandia UNDERSTAND OUR MESSAGE!!!  They get what it means to have a living prophet on the earth today. Everyone pays attention and asks questions during our message here! It makes it so easy to teach people! But like Rio Verde, no one is married and in Uberlandia, it takes longer for people to get Married. But I'm loving this area so far! The name of the street where the Church is located is actually called Rua Joseph Smith haha.

We are teaching this lady named Monica who is very funny. I really do like her! She wasn't sure a couple of weeks ago that she wanted to be baptized, but she told us yesterday that she really wants to, now. So hopefully, everything will work out with her this week and she'll be baptized on Saturday. I don't really know her all that well because the missionaries had already taught her before I came to the area. But pray for her that nothing will prevent her from being baptized this Saturday.

The members here are AWESOME!!! Ala Aurora was actually Elder Di Giordano's first area he served in on his mission. So he talked about how great this area was for him. The members are always willing to help and it's not hard for investigators to feel comfortable in the ward, which is amazing.

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

November 13, 2013 ~ Goiania Brazil Mission, Uberlandia ~ Week 41

Dear Family,

TRANSFERRED!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Haha I was finally transferred after 6 and a half months in Rio Verde. I was so so sad when I got transferred! I loved the people in Rio Verde so much. I will miss everyone I taught and baptized more than anything. The Assistant to the President called me and was like, "Do you know why I'm calling Elder Hanson? Because I just wanted to tell you that I love you."  I said, "Love you! Goodnight!" And then hung up. Hahaha He called me like a half an hour later and was like, "Just kidding! You're being transferred!" They all know that I've been in Rio Verde for like, my entire life. I was so mad and super sad :(.

I was transferred to this huge city called, Uberlandia (oober-lan-gee-a). It's seriously so big! I'm surprised that it doesn't have it's own mission. It' has a population of 800,000, while Goiania's population is 1,300,000. The ward that I'm working in is called Ala Aurora (Aurora ward). I've only been to the church here one time. But the people here seem really great! The only thing that's a tiny bit frustrating is that Sacrament Meeting is first and not last here. Makes it a tiny bit more difficult to get people there at 9 am, but it'll be fine.

My new companion is AWESOME! I seriously love him so much! I'm still Senior Companion but he is an awesome missionary and probably will be a senior companion soon. His name is Elder Loureiro, and he's from Curitiba, Brazil, but his family is currently living in the a different city in Brazil called Santa Catarina. A lot of people think that I'm from Santa Catarina because there's a ton of white people with blonde hair haha that live there. There's a lot of German descendants who live there, so everyone thinks I'm German. Anyway, Elder Loureiro is great. He's been on his mission for about 7 months, but he is well trained and it seems like he's been out for 18 months. I think we'll get along well. Elder Thomas and I really became great friends and so I was really sad to say goodbye to him. But, I'm excited to be here in Uberlandia! Also, Elder Wallace (a missionary from my district in the MTC) is in my zone here in the city, and so it's nice to see him and talk to him every once in a while.

Nothing much happened this week because we were hardly in our area at all. We went to Goiania to have a conference with President Costa (a member of the seventy). It was so good! I seriously loved it so much. And I realized at the end of the conference that I understood everything that President Costa said! Haha So that was a confirmation to me that I'm solid with the language. Anyway, he said many things that I'm going to apply in my work here in the field. That's the reason why I didn't email on Monday, because we were in the conference with him on that day. I'm seriously loving my mission! I'm realizing that everything is always better when you’'re positive. This past week I have been reflecting on my mission and analyzing everything I could do better and what I'm not doing...always room for improvement! I'm working as hard as possible to bring this wonderful Gospel of Jesus Christ to these people. I've decided to forget myself and just completely devote my time, talents, and love to others. I want to be worthy to always have The Holy Ghost with me. I'm very grateful for this amazing Truth of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. 

There is this new American Elder who arrived in the mission this week. He and his companion live with us. He's super stressed out and so I've tried to do everything I can to help him. He's struggling with the language and not understanding anything. Also, he got extremely sick this week. His stomach started hurting like crazy and it spread to his back. They don't know what's wrong with him, but he'll be going to a better hospital sometime this week. Pray for him because he's so stressed out about it. I feel so bad!!! I didn't get sick, but I remember how hard it was when I first came to Brazil, with my Trainer and everything, so I want to help him out the best way I can.

Also, I think I need to get new pants haha. My suit pants barely stay on me and I don't want to get them altered because it costs money :'( but maybe I'll have to do that haha because it's getting scary. People are telling me that I finally have a neck lol. I'll have a better letter next week because more things will happen I'm sure haha. I'll send some pictures next week because this computer is super slow with the pictures. Desculpe. Love you guys so much! I hope everything is going well with you guys....thinking about you ALL...all the time! Tchau!

Monday, November 4, 2013

November 4, 2013 ~ Goiania Brazil Mission, Rio Verde ~ Week 40

Dear Family,

This week was so good!!! We had another two batismos!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! WHOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! We baptized this kid Matheus, who we've been teaching for awhile. We actually had his baptismal date set for next week, because the rule was that people under 16 years old had to go to church 4 times before they could be baptized. But the rule changed last week and he had already gone 3 times, so we were really happy he was baptized this week! The youth in our branch are amazing! They are always so welcoming to every moca (young women) or rapaz (young men) and they are always making friends with them, so it's really easy to get the youth investigators integrated into the branch here! Matheus has so many friends already and he's been going to seminary now for forever. It's awesome that he has such good support from the youth!

Colin and Matheus
We also Baptized Zito's son, Wangrisson!! I think I told you about Zito's last week? Not sure, but we have been teaching him and he is GOLDEN. I love Zito so much! He's always bringing new people to church every week and he's not even baptized yet! He brought his son, Wangrisson to church a couple of times and he really liked church, so he was baptized! He hasn't been as integrated with the youth because he hasn't gone to seminary yet, but he's been making friends at church and so everything will work out with that. We also invited Zito to be legally married so he can get baptized and he accepted! They still have to wait until the end of November to get officially married though. It's such a miracle and he has such a desire to be a part of Jesus Christ Gospel. I'm so excited for him! His wife is not as interested as he is, but she went to church this week and she also brought her sister with her! So hopefully we'll be able to baptize them all! Seria excelente!

Colin, Wangrisson and Elder Thomas
I'm so afraid that I'm going to get transferred though. Today is when we're going to find out if we got transferred or not, and I'm so scared! I want to be here so bad for Zito's wedding and his baptism! Also, remember Habyta's mom? She and her boyfriend are trying everything they can to get married so they can get baptized as well. They're super firm in the Church and they come to church every time, so I would be so sad if I wasn't able to baptize them. They're planning on getting married sometime in a January, so I don't know, but I really want to be here for them as well.

Everything is going so much better! Now that it's getting better, I want to stay in Rio Verde forever haha. Elder Thomas and I are building a strong companionship and are really good friends. But I'm pretty sure I'm going to be transferred, if not today, then for sure the next transfer. No one stays in an area for longer than 6 months! I want to stay so bad! The people here are so receptive to our message and I just love the Brazilian people to death. We love teaching them because they are pretty accepting to everything we throw at them. It's super hard work but it's all worth it in the end.

Rio Verde
I'm not even worried about my Portuguese anymore. A lot of people here think that I'm from the Southern part of Brazil (because there's a lot of white people there) and they say that I don't really have an accent anymore! Which means a lot to me because a few American missionaries, who have been out for almost two years, still have trouble with Brazilians understanding them. I don't have a problem with this anymore, everyone understands me now haha!

Anyway, I laughed when I saw Noah in the SLENDERMAN costume haha. SO OBSESSED! Love you guys! Ate a semana que vem! Tchau!!! Beijo! :/

Elder Hanson

Monday, October 28, 2013

October 28, 2013 ~ Goiania Brazil Mission, Rio Verde ~ Week 39

Dear Family,

This week was so much better!!!!!!!!!!! Everything just seemed to go so much better this week, it was crazy. WE BAPTIZED VERONICA!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Holy Cow! I'm so happy about it too! She wasn't sure if she wanted to be baptized this week, but then on Wednesday, we fasted for her, and we passed by her house (which is at the end of the freaking world in our area haha) and she just straight up said that she wanted to be baptized on Saturday! Elder Santos, my district leader, said that his baptismal interview with her was crazy good as well.  Elder Santos said that she knew everything and even taught him some stuff too haha. But our members in our branch just do not love to go to the missionaries baptisms, it's just not what they do. I literally called every single member of the branch to go to her baptism and literally only 6 members showed up. Even the Branch President has only come to maybe 2 of our baptism the whole time I've been here. But at least she got baptized! She has changed so much too! She even invited her neighbor to come to church with her yesterday and he came! Haha Elder Santos said to me that The Lord was preparing her for this Gospel and so she's an Elect person. Which is really true!! I've never seen any investigator as prepared as she was for their baptism. It was Awesome!!!
Colin and Veronica

Colin, Veronica and Elder Thomas

Elder Thomas, Colin and Veronica and other Elders from Colin's District in Rio Verde

I'm not really sure why the writing style changed all of the sudden lol, but it's not changing back. This computer is straight retarded. Veradiane, Veronica's sister, came to church yesterday as well! We had 7 investigators at church yesterday! This was a blessing really from The Lord because we didn't have the greatest luck finding a ton of people this week. The most investigators I've ever had come to church was 8 so I was really happy with our blessings yesterday.

Things are going really smoothly with Elder Thomas this week. I really love him and we are working well together. We had a weekly planning so we had companionship inventory, which went really great. I think we can have much success together in bringing souls to Christ.

So weird that it's already Halloween! Brazil doesn't celebrate Halloween. They celebrate O Dia das Bruxas (which means day of the witches lol), but I don't think it's on October 31st. Not even sure if this area of Brazil celebrates it. Everyday just seems to be the same, weather wise. There's no change in seasons at all which is something I miss so much! It's almost winter back home! That blows my mind haha. 

Nothing else much happened this week. I'm just glad that things are getting better. Love you guys so much!!!!!!!!!!! Tchau!

Elder Hanson

October, 2013 ~ Goiania Brazil Mission, Rio Verde ~ Letter from Mission President, David Kuceki

Dear Hanson Family,

Thank you for preparing such an obedient missionary. He is a great missionary and an excellent young man. It is with pleasure that we inform you that your missionary was called to the ranks of the missionaries most faithful and trusted in the Brazil Goiania Mission. ELDER HANSON will be serving as a trainer in the POPULAR area in the city of a Rio Verde, Goias. Trainers teach through example how to plan, find, and teach investigators and how to work with the local church leaders and members. All this in order to train the new missionaries. We know that he will fulfill this responsibility with the same amount of faith and diligence that he has demonstrated in the other calling and responsibilities that he was given throughout his mission.
Once again, thank you. You have a marvelous missionary. We love him and know that The Lord loves him. We will continue to take care of him. Please continue to communicate with him. Letters are very important to every full-time missionary. He is under the watch of The Lord.


David Kuceki
Mission President

Monday, October 21, 2013

October 21, 2013 ~ Goiania Brazil Mission, Rio Verde ~ Week 38

Dear Family,

This week was a big improvement from last week and the weeks before haha!!!!!!! Everything just seemed to go so much better. We're gradually improving with getting our investigators to church. My companion and I are becoming really good friends :)! Please keep praying for our success!

Noah is huge!!! I saw the picture you sent and my mind is completely blown! What the fudge??? How tall is he now? That's crazy. Is he taller than Erik? It looks like he is taller, by the picture lol.

The beliefs of some Brazilians are sometimes unique haha. This week we were teaching these two sisters and we were talking about the Prophets and everything...then randomly they start telling us about a story. One night they we're looking at the stars in the sky and they saw Jesus's Face in the stars so now they know for a fact what Jesus looks like and they are sticking to this story. It really did strengthen their faith in Christ though, so I just respected their story. One of the sisters is a 22 year old girl and she lives with her sister, who is 23. It's crazy to me how interested they are in the church. It's Awesome!!! The older sister ALWAYS reads what we ask her to, but she needs to come to Church.  Veronica is good to come to church and is interested in Jesus Christ Church, and her sister seems super interested as well. Thankfully Veronica is strong and she told us that she prayed about being Baptized and she committed to keep all the Lord's commandments. She's been coming to church so she will be baptized this Saturday!!!!! Pray for her por favor! And for Veradiane as well!

This week we were blessed to find this guy to teach. At first, he didn't seem super interested in our message, but he said that he would go to church. So we stopped at his house a few days later and he said he had kept all the commitments we asked of him and he already received an answer that this Church is true after he prayed and asked Heavenly Father! I was so happy haha!!! So we invited him to be baptized and he accepted :) BUT we found out that his marriage contract prevents him from being baptized for the moment :( So dumb!!!!!! He married legally, but it's like this weird contract thing for only two years (I guess it was cheaper to get married this way lol/but not lol). So yeah, it prevents him from being baptized until he marries her legally. My guess is that about 80 percent of the people here just cohabit. It's so AWFUL and it's so frustrating when we find Brazilians who are really interested in the Church and then we find out they're not legally married.

Answering dad's question about the gates in front of all the houses here, it's so weird! I'm still not used to the gates at every single house. We either have to clap at the gates, or we just knock on the gate really hard. They say that they have them so they don't get robbed!

This past month has been hard for me. Not having any success this month and seeing other Elders have so much success is frustrating to me because I'm so obedient and I always try to do all the right things. It makes me feel like a failure sometimes. But we had this meeting with President Kuceki. He talked about a million different things and so I'm feeling a lot better now about everything....I am trying my hardest everyday and then I realized that I was doing everything right and that I need to try even harder. Then leave the rest up to The Lord. I'm not sure what else I can really do haha.

Love you guys! Thank you so much for the packages that you're sending me! I hope everything is going well with you guys. Love you! Tchau!

Elder Hanson

Monday, October 14, 2013

October 14, 2013 ~ Goiania Brazil Mission, Rio Verde ~ Week 37

Querida Familia,

This week was better than last week. It seems like the mission just gets harder and harder, but the weird thing is that I love it! My companion and I are getting along really great. I'm just trying to teach him everything that will help him as a missionary. Like, there was this one guy that we taught this week that is really knowledegable on the bible and everything. He told us, after we invited him to go to church, that he does not believe in organized religion. People like this, that do not want to go to church, we never return to because there are other people who are willing to go to church and we have to find those Elect people. Everyone has told me to study Chapter 6 of Preach My Gospel because it talks about the Attributes of Christ. So I've studied that a bit more this week. Hopefully trying to be more like Christ will help me be a better trainer.

Colin and Elder Thomas
We were super blessed this week. There were Elders in another area in Rio Verde that were teaching these two girls, Veronica and Veradiane (they had set a baptism date too) but the girls moved to our area a few days ago. So now we are teaching them. They're really interested in the church and they are about 23 years old. They always read the Book of Mormon and the other pamphlets we give them and they've been keeping their commitments as well.  We will continue to help them understand the importance of keeping all the Lord's commandments. On Sunday, we passed by their house and Veronica and her mom were ready to go, but Veradiane was gone out looking for her mom thinking she was not home. We could not get a hold of her so she missed church but Veronica and her mom went to church. We will work things out though.

I don't really have much else to say, so I'll tell you something funny/ not funny about Brazil. The dogs get treated like less than the dust of the earth haha. We'll be teaching a lesson with a family and they will be super nice to us and then the dog starts making noise and they yell at them. The only word the dogs know is "Sai!" which means "leave!". I feel bad for the dogs sometimes. We always laugh about why people even have dogs if they hate them so much haha. Elder Lee loves to cook, and the people always make different types of meat for us. He asks them what type of meat it is and they always say "E carne" which means it's meat haha. But what kind of meat, we don't know????

Thank you for all of your prayers. I'm still waiting for your packages. I think you guys sent about 5, but I have not seen them yet. Hopefully soon. Love you guys!

Elder Hanson

Monday, October 7, 2013

October 7, 2013 ~ Goiania Brazil Mission, Rio Verde ~ Week 36

Dear Family,

Wellllllll, this week wasn't my favorite week of all time hahahahahaha.

I missed two sessions of General Conference. YES, TWO Sessions of Conference. So I literally have no ideas the new stats in the Church. Haha I'm so butthurt you guys don't even understand. I feel like I completely sinned and that I have to repent even though I didn't do anything wrong. We went to the first Saturday session, which is the one I enjoyed the most because we brought our investigator named Jose Carlos to that session. The other session I attended was the Sunday morning session yesterday and I couldn't even enjoy it because I was stressing out so bad about my investigators. It was awful! I literally couldn't tell you what happened during that session, besides President Monson's talk. His talk was by far my favorite! When he started talking about his wife and everything about her, I had tears in my eyes, and I've never cried over a talk in my life haha. Then I was thinking about all the hardships that I'm having on my mission, sometimes I feel so alone, and then he talked about how the Savior will NEVER leave you and I just felt the Spirit so strong, and teared up again haha. Besides that, I'm going to have to print the rest of the Conference talks off the internet :(.

The reason I missed the second afternoon Saturday session was because the rule of the mission is that if you don't have investigators at that session, you can't watch it. So we didn't watch that session :'(. The reason that we missed the afternoon session of conference yesterday was because My companion got super sick. He told me after the first session that he was feeling sick and so we started back home, and then he said that he was going to throw up, and he threw up on the side of the street :/. I felt so bad! I think what he has is food poisoning, because he doesn't feel like he has the flu or anything. I called President and Sister Kuceki, but they couldn't answer because they were at it was a just a big mess with who would be at Conference with my investigators. I'm still stressing out of my mind about it lol.

We did find many people this week who were LEGALLY married! Nobody is legally married, so we were so happy during the week. But then, as always, people just won't go to church! They always say that they're going to go until Sunday and something retarded gets in the way, so frustrating.

I really like my new companion! He's completely obedient, which I'm super happy about and he studies hard and everything. One thing that I've learned on my mission is to have unity in every companionship or you won't have success. So I'm just trying my best with everything. I'm his trainer so I try to teach him things that they don't teach in the MTC. I wish my trainer would have cared to teach me. I'm really just trying my best to help him with everything.

I really am loving my mission! I just read through my email and realize how negative it was but I truly LOVE IT! This week just sucked so hard haha. I'll try to be more positive in my other emails hahaha.

We're still trying to find new people. Guys, please pray that we may be able to find the people who are prepared to hear The Gospel of Jesus Christ, and that we may be able to bring people to Church.

Love you guys! Tchau!

Elder Hanson

Monday, September 30, 2013

September 30, 2013 ~ Goiania Brazil Mission, Rio Verde ~ Week 35

Dear Family,
     Well...I was not transferred hahahahaha. I'm still in Rio Verde just trying to kill it like I always do! lol
Guess What? I'm TRAINING! HAHA. A gringo too! Elder Thomas is from Colorado and he just barely got to the mission on Wednesday. I had no idea that I was going to be training too. They called me like 3 hours before I had to go pick him up and told me that I was going to be training!. So Crazy! Elder Lobos was transferred though and now we have a Brazilian named Elder De Jesus living with us.

     Elder Thomas is cool. He is already speaking Portuguese better than I did when I got to the mission. He's not afraid to talk to anybody either. He got his Visa before he left on his mission so he went to the MTC in Sao Paulo. I think that it would have helped me with my Portuguese to have gone to the MTC in São Paulo, because they only speak Portuguese there haha. But he's learning about everything so quickly. I am trying to teach him everything that I know because I actually want to help him (unlike my trainer) because I never really was trained. I basically had to learn everything myself. He is trying to help me as well, because he knows that it's my first time being a trainer. But he's not afraid to say if he thinks that I could have done something better in our lessons haha so I think that it's a good companionship. He's not stressed out like crazy like I am, either haha. I think I was a straight up girl when I got to Brazil. I'm a little stressed out though, but I think everything will work out well.

     This week did not go too great. We had so many people say they would come to church and literally, nobody came. So Annoying! We passed by all of their houses Sunday morning and all of them weren't there or gave some lame excuse. I hate that so much! Why say that you are going if you aren't going to go?

     But we did see a miracle happen. So we were passing by one of the people's houses yesterday trying to get them to church and their neighbor passed by Elder Thomas and Elder Lins (an Elder in by district who helped us get people to go to church) and Elder Lins invited him to go to church and the guy actually went! So we passed by his house yesterday and he is super interested in the church now! He and his wife are legally married. They are interested and really want to hear the Prophet speak on Sunday. They are religious but starting to doubt the truthfulness of their church (his wife went on for an hour about tithing hahaha). That's one thing about Brazil, the people ALWAYS say the same thing at least three times before they let us start to speak. Whenever we knock on doors it's always like that haha. So she said like 3 times the exact same thing and we were just like "we understood you the first time." haha  But I LOVE the Brazilian people so much!!!

     We had to drop a lot of people this week because they didn't go to church. It's sad, but there's not much you can do after you have done your part and the people still don't change. Everyone has to do their part. Naiviv (name change) was one of the people we had to drop this week and so that was pretty sad. She just doesn't have any desire to change at all.

     So this is super random, but this morning I got out of bed to pray and I felt something on the back of my neck. So I smacked it because I thought it was a mosquito. But then I got up and went to the bathroom and I felt it again when I walked in. I smacked it again and a huge cockroach fell on my shoulder! I literally almost started crying it scared me so bad haha. It's Elder Lee's fault haha because he sleeps on the top bunk and last night he said he saw 2 cockroaches in his bed and he said they fell to the floor when he tried to kill them. But I guess they did not fall to the floor, they fell on me! It's all his fault haha!

     Nothing much else happened this week. I'm really excited to train Elder Thomas and everything will go great. Love you guys so much! Tchau!

Elder Hanson

Monday, September 23, 2013

September 23, 2013 ~ Goiania Brazil Mission, Rio Verde ~ Week 34

Dear Family,

Hey Guys! This week passed by SO SLOWLY. It literally feels like a month ago since I've written you guys haha. So much crap happened this week.

First off, the baptism with Rairanne didn't  go as planned. This time, Elder Di Giordano tried to baptize her and she entered the water, but her gosh dang foot came out of the water! At the same time, water got in her nose, so she got super scared to go under again. Then, two days later, the zone leaders called me and said they would talk to her and encourage her. So they came and talked to her and basically tried to get her in the baptismal font, but she wouldn't stop crying. I felt so freaking bad! Especially for her grandma because she had to deal with her crying so much. It was so dumb! In short, Rairanne wasn't baptized :(.

Rairanne's "Almost" Baptism 
Also, Elder Di Giordano finished his mission and went home on Friday :( . It was super sad saying goodbye to him as well! I literally almost cried (but I didn't lol). When he went home, they put this other Elder in my zone with me because his companion went home on Friday as well. His name is Elder Coradeghini (from Argentina) but he was only my companion for just a few days  because this morning we took him back to his area in Rio Verde. I'm not really sure why our Leaders did it this way. So right now I'm in a Trio with the other 2 Elders in my house, Elder Lobos (Lobo means wolf in Portuguese haha so we call him Elder Wolf) and Elder Lee. I'm pretty sure this means that I'll be transferred today :///////////. I'm kind of freaking out haha because I really don't want to be transferred. Also, they put me as Senior companion with Elder Coradeghini and that's also why I think I'll be transferred. We'll see what happens though! Usually people stay in a area for 3 to 4 months and I've been in Rio Verde since fudging April.

Colin and Elder Coradeghini

Colin's District
Nothing really is happening with Naivi (name change) She isn't progressing at all. We tell her to read the Book of Mormon ever time we visit and teach her, but she won't do it. Although- she came to Church yesterday, but only for Relief Society because she didn't want to be in the same room as her cousin. We passed by her house yesterday to talk to her and she told us that there's an Assembly of God Church (which is like a huge Evangelical Church in Brazil) that is close by her house and she said that she wants to go to that Church away from her cousin. I told her "But Our Church is not the church of your cousin, it's The Church of Jesus Christ. Do you want to attend the Church that is The Church of Jesus Christ, or the church of the world?" She didn't really know what to say haha, but I hope the Spirit will guide her in the right direction. As we were talking with Vivian, her cousin came into the house and it was super awkward lol, so Elder Coradeghini and I just  left.

We also went to a Rodizios Restaurant last Pday! It was so freaking good, it wasn't even funny lol!! It was three million times better than Rodizio in Utah. It was so dang expensive as well but we wanted to celebrate!

Elders from Rio Verde Zone

Colin and Elder Di Goirdino

Colin and Jesus


Rodizio ! (ignore the beer sign  haha)

Other than that, nothing else much happened. I'll end by sharing my favorite chapter in The Book of Mormon, Ether Chapter 12, it talks a lot about faith and Miracles.  I especially love Ether verse 6, "And now, I, Moroni, would speak somewhat concerning these things; I would show unto the world that faith is things which are hoped for and not seen; wherefore, dispute not because ye see not, for ye receive no witness until after the trial of your faith". Ether Verse 12,  "For if there be no faith among the children of men God can do no miracle among them; wherefore, he showed not himself until after their faith". And Ether verse 27, "And if men come unto me I will show unto them their weakness. I give unto men weakness that they may be humble; and my grace is sufficient for all men that humble themselves before me, and have faith in me, then will I make weak things become strong unto them". I love the Book of Mormon so much! I know that it is true and it has helped me a lot in my life. Everyone just needs to read it and it will change their life forever.
Colin and Raimundo (one of Colin's converts)
Love you guys! Thinking and praying about you all the time! OS amo DEMAIS!

Elder Hanson

Monday, September 16, 2013

September 16, 2013 ~ Goiania Brazil Mission, Rio Verde ~ Week 33

Dear Family,

Sorry I emailed your email to everybody last week haha. I didn't mean to do that. I just want to send my emails that I send you guys, to my close friends that are on their missions so they know what's happening here in Brazil. Sorry! I'm super retarded when it comes to things like this haha.

Anyway! This week was better than last week. Yesterday, we got Raianne to commit to be baptized this Thursday! It's gonna be on Thursday because we're pretty sure that Elder Di Giordano will leave for home on Friday and Raianne wants to be baptized while Elder Di Giordano is still here! Hopefully, she's over her fear of water haha.

We did divisions on Wednesday, but I stayed in my area this week. We honestly do divisions so much here lol. But it was good this time, because I didn't have to leave my area. We just knocked on a lot of doors and on one street we found a bunch of people to teach and they all wanted to go to church! It was actually really cool. What's annoying, is a lot of people commit to go to church and still won't go :/. On that one street, we found 9 new people who said they would go, and only 2 actually came to Church :(. We went to this one lady's house who loved our lesson and said that she really wanted to go to Church. So we went back to her house to confirm that she would go and she was there cleaning a bunch of stuff. Her husband got super mad at us for no reason and was like "Can't you see that my Woman is cleaning?" (That's what Brazilian men call their wives hahahahaha). Then he told us to leave!! Super strange, but anyway, she didn't go to church :/.

We went and visited  Naivi (name change) at her house the other day and she is doing a ton better! She told us that she realized that a lot of people have much worse problems than she does. She is about ready to pop haha so she wasn't able to go to church yesterday.  Keep praying for her and her baby.

Our Zone was number one in the mission this month with 31 baptisms! So we got to have a water balloon fight this morning haha.

Elder Lee, Elder Lobos, Colin, Elder Di Giordano

Rio Verde Zone, Brazil Goiania Mission

Elder Pontes, Colin, Elder Lins
Brazil Goiania Mission

Other than that, I realized that on September 12, it's been a year since I got my Mission call to Goiania Brazil!!! Crazy how time flies. Anyway!!!! Love you guys so much! I pray for you constantly, still. Tchau!

Elder Hanson

Monday, September 9, 2013

September 9, 2013 ~ Goiania Brazil Mission, Rio Verde ~ Week 32

Dear Family,

Hey guys! This week was a little bit better than last week haha. Not much though!!! We struggled teaching lessons this week! It was so weird, we literally knocked on like a thousand doors this week and only a few people let us in to teach them. The adversary is so DUMB!!!

However, we did have a cool experience the other night. We were struggling with finding people that would keep their commitments and go to Church. My companion and I were feeling like total butt heads, until our district leader, Elder Eastwood called us and told us to pray with real faith, to find an Elect Family to teach. So Elder Di Giordano prayed and then I prayed with total Faith... A few doors later, we found an awesome family! The mom told us that she had already gone to church a few times, but then she had to travel to a different state in Brazil, so she lost contact with the missionaries. But NOW we're here to teach them!  The only problem is that they're not married :(. She was super excited about going to church and she came on Sunday, but her boyfriend didn't. This was a super cool experience in praying in Faith for something specific (To find an Elect Family)  and then finding this family right after that.

Bad news with Naiviv (name change) :(. We went to teach her on Tuesday, and it was actually a really great lesson! I think we helped her a lot. But that night her sister was getting frustrated with her and then something happened that wasn't good. Anyway, for right now, She can't get baptized. So crazy! Things like this make me so frustrated because as missionaries, we are here to help people and bring people to the Gospel of Jesus Christ. It's so sad that something like this would happen, preventing her from being baptized, for now. It sucks!!!

We had interviews with President Kuceki this week! Honestly, I feel so much better about EVERYTHING!!!! I freaking love President Kuceki!!! He is making some changes in the mission. He took out everything we were teaching that wasn't in Preach My Gospel. Like there were a few things that President Prieto added to help the missionaries with their teaching. But President Kuceki believes that everything we need to teach in our lessons, is in Preach My Gospel. Which is really true! Preach My Gospel is an inspired work, written by the General Authorities, and so it's basically considered scripture. This makes total sense why he is making these changes. But it was kind of a struggle for me this week haha because we weren't allowed to use the things that President Preito made for us, but I'll get used to it for sure.

Other than this, nothing else happened this week. Raianne is still afraid of the water.  Anorak (name change) should be married this week and that means she'll be able to be baptized this Saturday. Elder Di Giordano will end his mission next week :( and I think that I'll be transferred at that time as well. It'll be interesting to see what happens in the next couple weeks. I'm sad and excited at the same time.

Love you guys! I finally got your photos from Independence Day haha. I still need G's, and HAIR GEL por favor!!!!!! Tchau!

Elder Hanson

Monday, September 2, 2013

September 2, 2013 ~ Goiania Brazil Mission, Rio Verde ~ Week 31

Dear Family,

Well, this week blew CHUNKS so hard!!!!! It was actually going super well until yesterday. We stayed in one area to find new people to teach and we had a ton of success there. We found five families that we taught and they all said that they would go to church! But then Sunday came around and not one of the families went to church. We do everything we can to teach them the importance of going to Church to learn about Jesus Christ and to feel the Spirit, but they don't get it. It's soooooo frustrating, it's not even funny. I honestly can't stand it.!!!! Flavia was so right when she said that in Brazilian culture,  it's all about 'there is always tomorrow right?' Haha it's so annoying sometimes.

We also had to kind of drop Solrac (name change) as an investigator this week because he didn't go to church again yesterday. Like I told you guys last week, if something happens in his life, he just shuts down and can't do anything else until he solves that problem. This is what happened again this week, he had another family problem and so he couldn't go to church. We stopped by his house on Sunday and he kind of got frustrated with us because we told  him how critical it is to go to church, and how we get sad when he doesn't go. We just told him to call us when he decides that he really wants the Gospel of Jesus Christ in his life. It's so sad because I honestly can see him being a great leader in the branch.

We did have a MIRACLE happen this week! We taught this lady named Naivi (name change) who is a referral from one of the members in our branch. She has some problems in her life. She's 32 years old, she's pregnant and so she lives with her brothers and sister. When she found out she was pregnant, she became super depressed. She is so nice that it's difficult to see someone like her struggle with this. We taught her a while back but she never was able to go to church because she gets extremely depressed all the time. But this week, one of the members asked us missionaries to give her a blessing. So we went over to her house and gave her a Priesthood blessing. It was very cool because she had never heard or seen a blessing before, or anything like it. She was crying and I could tell that she felt the Spirit super strong!!!!!! Boa Noticia (Good News), SHE CAME TO CHURCH ON SUNDAY! It was so Awesome and I think the Priesthood Blessing helped a ton. We invited her to be baptized yesterday and she accepted.!  Pray for her and pray for her cousin, that she will help her. Pray that everything will work out for her.

Also, we're teaching this lady named Anirak (name change) who doesn't live in Rio Verde haha. I don't remember if I already talked about her to you guys, but she lives with her boyfriend, who is a member, in Quirionopolis Brazil. We teach them because they're always in Rio Verde working with a member of our branch. So we're teaching her and they are going to get married either this week or next week and then she'll be able to be baptized as well. The weird thing about it is that she is 18 years old and he's like 32 :/. Hahaha  THE thing is that this is completely normal here in Brazil. We see it ALL THE TIME.

Other than that, there's not much else to say lol. I hope you guys are doing great and I'm so happy that Travis is planning on going on a mission! I hope Noah and Erik had a good first week at school and that everything is going great. Love you guys! Have an amazing week! I'm praying for you always!

Elder Hanson

Monday, August 26, 2013

August 26, 2013 ~ Goiania Brazil Mission, Rio Verde ~ Week 30

Dear Family,

Oi! Como vai? Espero que tudo e otimo com voces e que Youth Conference foi bom demais is pra voces. Esta semana passada Nao foi muito boa :(

Haha but before I get into that, this is the picture of the baptism of Joao Paulo and his Cousin. He was baptized a couple weeks ago, but I'm finally sending you the picture of Joao's baptism. He is so awesome now! It's crazy how much people change because of the church! By the way, his cousin baptized him.
Elder Colin Hanson, Joao Paulo, Cousin, Elder Di Giordano

I just need to tell you how freaking awkward I am. We're in this Internet Cafe right now, and out of the four missionaries here, my computer is the one that didn't work. So I ask the lady if I could change computers., but as I was getting out of my chair, the chair fell back and made the loudest noise ever :(. Everyone looked at me like I was genuinely retarded. An Awkward American!!! These past few weeks have been kind of a struggle of Awkward Retardedness. Lol:/

Anyway, like I said this week was kind of hard and it was difficult to focus. I'm not really sure why, but this week our numbers were awful. We didn't bring any investigators to church this week, which is horrible. We had people who said that they would go, but didn't. Even our investigator Solrac (name change) didn't go. It was so frustrating because we passed by his house that morning and he said he would go and then he didn't show. We stopped at his house again later and he said that he was having problems with family and so he couldn't go. He's the type of person that if something minuscule or big happens, he lets that get in the way of everything and he can't focus on anything else. It gets super frustrating at times. We're really trying our hardest with him, but he really has to do his part if he wants us to keep visiting him. He loves having us come over and teach him, but he isn't reading the Book of Mormon and he has missed church for two weeks, so it's hard. But we're hoping everything will go through with him.

We literally can't teach Ordnassela (name change) any more because he moved to Jaitai :/. It's so sad, but there's nothing we can do about it. :(  Hopefully, all will go well for him.

There's a member in our branch,  Alegnasile (name change), who wanted us to teach her husband. He goes to church every week, but they aren't married and so he can't be baptized yet. He never had the desire to be baptized until this week when we taught him. It was pretty cool! So we made a goal for them to get married before September 20th haha because I think I'm going to be transferred soon after this day. It's actually super easy to get married in Rio Verde. In Brazil, the cost and the wait to be married, depends on the city. They accepted the goal so hopefully- They will make plans to get married. Once they are married, Her husband can be baptized.

Other than this, nothing much else happened this week. I'm super jealous that you guys went to Fun. in concert this week! I want to see them live so bad. Lucky dorks!

Love you guys! Have a good week at school! Os amo! Tchau!

Elder Hanson

Monday, August 19, 2013

August 19, 2013 ~ Goiania Brazil Mission, Rio Verde ~ Week 29

Dear Family,

Oi Familia! Lol How are you guys?

So just to let you know, the dog didn't pierce the skin when he bit me haha. It hurt super bad though and it's still a little bit bruised. We went back to their house the other day and we were careful with the dog. But as we were teaching the people there, a worker arrived at the door and the dog bit him too haha and the investigators that own the dog, just laughed at him like it was freaking normal????  There are so many stray dogs roaming around and the dogs get in terrible fights with each other, leaving one to die. It's sad but at least once a week, I smell something awful and I know exactly what it is, a dead dog. But other than that, Brazil is really pretty and I'm loving it! I love the people! I love the food! I've grown to love the meat, beans, and rice, I seriously look forward to the beans everyday haha.

They told me that I was going to stay in Jatai until Wednesday. And so I said okay I'll go because my investigator, Raimundo's baptism was supposed to be that day, but Wednesday arrived and they told me that I couldn't come back until Thursday! So I called the zone leaders on Wednesday, just to see if there was any way that I could come back on Wednesday so I could be at Raimundo's baptism! They told me that he got baptized on Tuesday! I missed my own investigator's baptism!!!! But yeah, Raimundo was BAPTIZED!!!!!!!!!!! So freaking Awesome and I didn't even know about it until Wednesday. But whatever haha I didn't get back to Rio Verde until Friday. But yeah he got baptized and I don't have a picture to prove it lol! I'll have Elder Di Giordano send it to me and then I'll send it to you guys.

Also, Katiely and one of her brothers, Karlos Eduardo were BAPTIZED!!!!!!!!!! WHOOOOOO!!!!!  Haha We tried everything possible to baptize her other brothers, but couldn't get it done. However they came to the baptisms and it was really cool because they seemed super excited after. We'll keep working with Them and hopefully they'll be baptized this week. I don't have pictures of Katiely and Karlos baptisms either because my camera freaked out and stopped working at the baptism, but then after it started working again. Hahahahaha This week just wasn't my week. But we did have three baptisms so that's AWESOME!

We are teaching this guy named Solrac (name change) who seriously could be the Bishop in a few years lol!!! He is so Awesome! But the other day, he was cleaning his house and he tweaked something in his back. It was really bad and like he can't even move now. It hurt so bad that he literally couldn't get up to go to Church yesterday :( but he LOVES having us teach him and he loves the Gospel of Jesus Christ so much. We have a date marked for him to be baptized this Saturday! But we might have to change it to next week because he didn't go to Church yesterday. Please Pray for him and pray for Katiely's two brothers this week so that they will all be baptized.

We literally haven't been able to find Ordnassela (name change) this past week. We go to his house, but he's never there. I'm worried that he was annoyed when we taught him about the Law of Chastity, and how he has to be the way God created him, and that he can't be a girl. I think that was difficult for him because we haven't seen him since. But HOPEFULLY everything will work out because he's way cool!

One thing good about being away from Rio Verde this week was that I didn't have to deal with a problem we had with our house for a few days hahahahahaha ha!!!! In Rio Verde, Brazil, Sewers don't exist, and all the poop that we do--stays basically under our house. When the poop fills up, workers have to come and suck all of it out with these huge trucks that are so disgusting its not even funny. Our poop accumulated to capacity and was leaving the ground and rolling into the streets. SO AWFUL! The other Elders in my house called the worker guy on Monday last week and he said that he couldn't come until Saturday to clean it up. So they had to to deal with that everyday until Saturday lol and I only had to deal with it on Friday, but it was so terrible.

I think that I'll be transferred at the end of this transfer. My awesome Zone Leader and the Assistant told me that something basically will happen to me at the end of this transfer. So I'm wondering what it is....

Anyways! I'm loving my Mission so much and I'm growing more and more everyday! I'm so very grateful for this opportunity and I hope and pray you guys are doing okay! DON'T BE NERVOUS FOR HIGH SCHOOL Noah---You freaking Trick, it's not even hard haha. Love you guys! Miss you all more than you know...

Elder Hanson

Monday, August 12, 2013

August 12, 2013 ~ Goiania Brazil Mission, Rio Verde ~ Week 28

Dear Family,

Hey guys! I hope you guys had a lot of fun this past week!!!!!!!!!!

I've been kind of stressed out this past week haha and I'm not really sure why. I think it's because I thought that I might be transferred this week but thankfully, it looks like it's not going to happen. I just want to stay in Rio Verde for my whole mission! Most missionaries want to be transferred after awhile, but I love the people in Rio Verde so much and I'm so used to it here that it will be hard once I get transferred.

So this week, we focused on Katielle and Raimundo. Katielle, is a referral from a solid member here in the branch. Her parents are great and she has 3 awesome brothers that will be baptized this Saturday. Only Katielle and Raimundo both backed out of their baptisms this week :(. Katielle said that she just wants to be baptized with her brothers, so that's cool and there's not really a problem with that. But Raimundo, honestly is such a long story, but in short, he just said that Saturday wasn't the day for him to be baptized, and that August 14th is the PERFECT Day :) If you want to know the rest of the story, just ask lol.

The Zone Leaders had me travel once again to Jatai haha. This time, it's because a missionary there is going home, leaving his companion missionary by himself. Missionaries can't be alone lol so they needed someone to go to Jatai AGAIN. It honestly annoyed me a little bit when they asked me to go, but you know, you can't say no. So right now I'm in Jatai sending this email to you guys. I've hardly been in my actual area lately. I'll be here until Wednesday when the new Elders come to Jatai and this means that I won't be transferred :):):)

Anyway, I can't freaking believe that Cody was in such an awful truck accident and that it rolled 5 times. That honestly sucks so bad, I feel terrible. Two days before he was supposed to leave for his mission? That stinks!!! But I'm so glad that he's okay and that nothing too bad happened to him. That's nuts that the truck is completely demolished!! I can't believe it!!! Tell him that I'll be fasting and praying for him this week :)

Hey! Does Ben leave this week or next week? I want to know so I can send him an email. Oh By The Way, with pictures, I'll send them next week because the computer that I'm using isn't reading my camera. Also, I got bitten by a loser dog yesterday. It hurt so freaking bad!!!! But it's just a bite mark that's bruised right now haha, he didn't pierce the skin. So dang annoying!!!! I hate dogs with all my heart now!!! More than anything!!! Don't worry Mom, it was a normal dog and it didn't have rabies or anything so no need to fret.

Nothing much else to say this week. When you guys ask me if I'm singing. I don't really know what you mean haha. There is never a chance to sing, like EVER. The people here, are completely tone deaf hahahahaha so nobody sings. Seriously, you should hear the sacrament meeting Hymns here :/ lol. It's all good can still feel the Spirit :) Until they asked me to play the piano for the Sacrament meetings, I don't know that they knew the tune of any Hymns haha.

Love you guys! Is amo muito e espero que tudo e bom com voces. Tchau!

Elder Hanson