Monday, February 24, 2014

February 24, 2014 - Brazil Goiania Mission - Uberlandia - Week 56

Dear Family,

So this week started off really well, and then ended on a sad note. We were having a bunch of success during the start of the week. We were finding a ton of new people to teach and we marked a baptismal date with a lady on Thursday. Then, in her baptismal interview, she all of the sudden changed her mind. It made me so sad :(. We marked two more dates with two women, but the dates fell because they didn´t come to church and we honestly haven´t been able to come in contact with them since like Friday. We´re not sure what happened because they were so interested! We also only had another lady at church on Sunday, but she just can´t give up smoking, and so she can´t be baptized. It´s sort of frustrating. 

I am just trying to be patient. I´m not perfect, and I get jealous of other Elders´ success sometimes. I remember reading Cooper´s blog like about 5 months ago and I remember him saying that he was working his butt off and not seeing the results, but now he is just baptizing like crazy. And then I read uncle Dave´s email this week and it really helped me! He talked about being patient and how basically the same thing was happening when he was on his mission. I just need to be patient. Haha I thought that I was the most patient person on the face of the earth before my mission, but I guess I still need to learn how to be even more patient. It´ll all work out. I promised myself that I wouldn´t ever want to get transferred out of an area, and so I´m determined to have it stay that way.

I swear, like doing service projects is like frowned upon here haha. I think we should do a lot more service. We had a few members ask us to help out with some service, and the other elders in Aurora like complained about it so hard. They had absolutely no desire to help out. It was the first time that I helped out here in Brazil since I´ve been in Montana. In Montana, that is All we did, was service. But now, we never do it.

What advice can you guys give me? I´m trying everything I can possibly think of. I hope everything works out.

Love you guys! Thank you for all the support.

Elder Hanson

Monday, February 17, 2014

February 17, 2014 - Brazil Goiania Mission - Uberlandia - Week 55

Dear Family,

What???? What the fudge happened this week? Haha there were like a million things and I´m just sitting here in the internet cafe freaking out and everyone´s wondering what´s wrong with me haha. I didn´t know Liz dated anyone seriously? What´s up with that? Haha that´s crazy! Congrats to Sam on his mission call! That´s crazy that he´s going to Nicaragua. Please be careful haha. Also, Colby is engaged? Crazy!

I hope grandpa´s heart surgery went well. That sucks so bad! I remember like it was yesterday when you guys told me that he had surgery a while back. I´m happy that you guys were able to give him a blessing. 

This week was a little bit rough. I am trying so hard to be super positive in all of my letters, but I don´t have anything good to say about this week haha. We had 0 investigators at church on Sunday :(. In my eyes, that is like ridiculous and I am just so mad at myself. What is happening? I work my butt off every day and I´m just not seeing the results. My companion and I decided that we´re just going to start from scratch now and just go crazy looking for new people to teach. This girl we have been teaching is not progressing at all, and so we´re going to have to drop her. The other people that we found this week didn´t go to church for stupid reasons. I´m just so stressed out right now. 

The family night things are just not working out. I still don´t know what to do about it. We'll keep trying, but I'm not going to get all stressed about it anymore. The Patriarch lives in our ward (who used to be the bishop) and he told us to do activities. We´re going to do it because I honestly can´t think of anything else to do. Nowhere in Preach my Gospel says that family nights are the best thing to do, and I just decided to be a Preach My Gospel missionary. We had interviews with President Kuceki this week, and he was seeing that our zone was struggling to find new people to teach. He came out after interviewing our District Leader and was like "the members are super important, but finding new people is the most important thing". I´m hoping that we can find new people, because right now, we´re really struggling. 

This area has taught me a lot of patience. In Rio Verde, we just always raked out the baptisms, but it Uberlândia, it´s a lot harder. I´ve learned to trust in the Lord and I know that everything will turn out right. I just need to be patient. In chapter 6 of Preach My Gospel, it talks a lot about Patience. That´s one of the attributes of Christ that I feel that I´ve developed here in this area. 

I know that everything will be alright. I know what the Lord expects of me and that´s all I can do, and I know that I´ll see the results. 

Love you guys! Thank you for all the support and congrats to everyone in our family! Tchau!

Elder Hanson

By the way, I got three of your packages this week! The one with the 12 days of Christmas (just a little bit late haha), the shirts, etc. Thank you so much!

Monday, February 10, 2014

February 10, 2014 - Brazil Goiania Mission - Uberlandia - Week 54

Dear Family,

So I´ll start off this week answering your "couple" questions from dad. haha

1. What are you doing for fun? 
We don´t do anything for fun hahaha there is literally nothing to do in our area and we´re not allowed to leave it unless we have special permission. It´s all just work work work work and then sleep on P days. 
2. Do you go sight seeing?
First of all, sight seeing? Who says that? Haha but no. Like I said, we´re not allowed to have fun :/ lol.
3. I hear there is a big park or zoo by you. Do you go there?
See the above questions. That should tell you.
4. How is the food? Are the members taking care of you?
The food is the same every day. I honestly look forward to it though. They always make rice, beans, some type of meat, pasta, and salad. Usually they make some type of juice as well, like Mango, Maracuja, Orange. Any type of juice really. Sometimes members will just give us money to eat at a restaurant, which consists of rice, beans, and meat hahaha.
5. What about your health? You are exercising? Do you run or play BBall?
We´re not allowed to go to the gym and no Brazilians play basketball so we usually just stretch in the mornings haha 
6. Do you go into the city? Should be lots to see there. PHOTOS?
See the above questions.
7. Have they said anything about Carnival?
They said that in the center of Uberlandia it gets CRAZY!!! But I think it will be the second week of March or something like that and so nothing will happen in my area. I´m pretty sure we´re going to just work like normal.
8. What is the mission plan for the World Cup? How are they going to use the event for missionary work?
No idea. But everything just SHUTS DOWN in Brazil during the world cup. Not sure what will happen. Vai ser doido demais!

By the way, I have not gotten any of your packages. We have a zone meeting tomorrow, so hopefully I´ll get them then, but if not, honestly somebody must have stole them along the way to Brazil. We need to be careful with the packages because I guess a lot of people will just steal them. I´m honestly a little bit worried about it.

This week was alright. We´re still struggling finding new people to teach and honestly, with the family nights, I don´t know what I could do better. It´s so frustrating. We didn´t do any this week because none of our members want to do one. It´s frustrating because we´re basically encouraged to still try and do them. But it´s annoying to the members if we´re asking them to do one every five seconds. All of the members tell us that they want to do more activities at church, which I completely agree with. 

Also, Rose (the one with the Muslim boyfriend) called us and said that her boyfriend doesn´t want us coming over anymore :(. It was so sad! She said that she would come to church still, but she ended up not going yesterday. It made me so sad, but I have to respect the boyfriend´s beliefs. Nothing we can really do about it.

Maura also has been difficult this week. She said that she could not come to church because she had to go to her sister´s house, but then we saw her walking down the street before church by her house :/. She´s not really progressing, even though she told us that she received an answer to her prayers. 

All of these trials are what´s making me stronger though. I know that everything will work out and we´ll have success. We just got to keep pushing through and keep having faith, and vai dar certo. :)

Love you guys! Hope  everything is going well with you all! 

Elder Hanson

Monday, February 3, 2014

February 3, 2014 - Brazil Goiania Mission - Uberlandia - Week 53

Dear Family,

Hey guys! So there were a lot of good things that happened, and a lot of bad things that happened this week. I´m still butthurt about our hole in the wall because nobody has confessed to it so we literally have no idea who did it. Also, you have no idea how happy I was that the Broncos lost the Superbowl hahahahahaha hahahahaha Idiots!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Anyway, we found a lady this week, who is super awesome. The only thing that is wrong, is that she´s not married with her boyfriend :(. By the way, her boyfriend is from Bangladesh :/ and he is super Muslim. But he let us in and we shared a message with them and he didn´t really understand a lot of it because he´s still learning Portuguese haha. She had to explain everything to him, and then he wouldn´t agree with it because he believes in Allah. But she went to church and she loved it so much. She told us that she would go every week. We just have to tell her now that she either needs to separate with her boyfriend or just get married with him,so that she could be baptized. I know that she would get baptized in a heartbeat.

As with the two sisters that we are teaching, it´s getting difficult. We've been having a hard time lately getting them to accept baptismal dates. We also found out that one of our other investigators smokes this week. We had no idea before haha because she had never smoked in front of us and I´ve never seen a box of cigarretes in her house. I felt like a straight idiot when she told us haha. Maura didn´t go to church, but she also told us that it would be hard for her to go to church every single week because there´s always people visiting her. But I have the faith that everything will go well.

I´m also in need of a lot of help right now. It´s a rule that you have to support all of the things that your leaders tell you, and I´ve always been really good at that. But right now, they´re telling us that we have to do 3 family nights with 3 different members a week and to receive 15 member references a week. Also, to teach 14 less active lessons a week. It´s so much piled on us right now that we barely have time to find new people to teach. I´m trying to do my best with everything. It´s hard with the family nights because there´s only 40 active members in the ward, as well as with the member references. we pass by the members every single day and sometimes, they just say that they´ve already passed by all the people that they know with the missionaries in the past and so they don´t have references for us. After, the leaders get mad at us for not reaching those goals. It´s hard because I´m trying the best I can, but it just doesn´t work out. What do you think I should do? I really do need advise for this right now. I just want to be the best missionary that I can be.

Alright, the best moment of the week. ARLEI BORE HIS TESTIMONY IN SACRAMENT MEETING!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Holy crap I was so happy when he got up there, I almost started crying haha. He was so nervous, but it was such a good testimony. Loved it!

Also, remember Elder Lee? he just got transferred to Uberlandia and told me that Zito in Rio Verde is still going to church every single week (still working on the whole marriage thing haha) and that his dad, and his nephew have been baptized since I was transferred! Also, Veronica´s sister was baptized a couple weeks after I left. So awesome!

Love you guys! Thank you for all the support and for the love lol. Love you so much! Tchau!

Elder Hanson