Monday, July 28, 2014

July 28, 2014 - Brazil Goiania Mission - Uberaba - Week 78

Dear Family,

This week was aigggghhhtttt. Haha there were a few dissapointments, but it´s all good.... 

We were totally about to baptize Brenda this last week, but then, at the last minute, her dad decided that he didn´t want her to be baptized. Everyone was super butthurt in that family. His excuse was that "she´s too young and doesn´t know what she wants yet." Whatever! She´s been going to church for two years now! (She also fasted so that her dad would let her be baptized without telling anybody hahahaha). Her sister, Bruna was especially sad. Bruna is the Primary President here (20 years old) and is a recent convert of about 1 year. She´s one of the strongest members in the ward and is always helping us. She was absolutely devastated when her dad didn´t let Brenda get baptized. It´ll be alright though! Elder Cunnington and I are planning on what we need to say to her dad. I honestly think that nobody has ever tried teaching the parents yet, so maybe it would be a lot easier just talking with them and help them understand better. I´m sure that within this month, she´ll be baptized as well. I´m not too worried about it.

We´ve marked a date with Girleide´s and Girlane´s brother Genival for the 9th! We´re also teaching this lady named Geni (don´t remember if I talked about her in my last email). She´s a really sweet lady and loves having us over. She´s been to church two times already and has a baptism date marked for the 9th as well. She could be baptized this Saturday, but we are working with her on a few things. She lives with her son, who has struggled with addiction for about 20 years. He also got baptized in the church when he was about 20 (which was like 20 years ago) but then fell away and ended up getting baptized in some other evangelical church. Before, the rule was that people like this didn´t need to get baptized again, because they already got baptized in the true church. The baptism in the other church wasn´t valid at all anyways and didn´t have any effect. But now, I guess the First Presidency has come out and said that if somebody gets baptized in another church after they´ve been baptized in our church, they have to be baptized again. It appears like it´s been a couple months that he´s been ready so we´re seeing if we can work with him and be able to baptize him this month, but if not, next month. But they´re sweet and they accept everything that we say.

Alisson should be getting the Priesthood next week!!! He´ll be able to pass and bless the sacrament soon because there are seriously like no young men in the ward haha. He´s loving church so much and he´s been growing a ton. He is awesome. His brother Lenilton and his girlfriend Marcela are going to church with him. We´re going to mark a marriage date with them within these next few weeks so that they can get baptized as well because they really want to. Só alegria!!!

In Gospel Principles yesterday at church, we were talking about Service. I made a comment on how as missionaries, we grow so much on the mission because of the service we give to others, and sometimes we don´t even realize how much we´ve grown. Tânia then got up and was like, "if the missionaries (Elder Hanson and Elder Bezerra) hadn´t gone on missions, I wouldn´t be here today. I will be eternally grateful for their service and I don´t even know how I´ll thank them." haha everyone started freaking out! It was awesome. I´ve seen how much I´ve grown on the mission. My personality hasn´t changed haha, but I know that I´ve grown so much spiritually, mentally, and emotionally as well. It´s kind of nuts lol.
Love you guys!!! Thanks for the support!

Elder Hanson

Monday, July 21, 2014

July 21, 2014 - Brazil Goiania Mission - Uberaba - Week 77

Dear Family,

This week was awesome! We had 2 baptisms this week. We baptized Girlane and Girleide!!! It was super awesome. Their brother did not get baptized because of freaking small thing!! Stupid coffee, but whatevs... he´ll be baptized this next week. But what was even more awesome is that Girlane and Girleide´s mom went to church as well. She was super afraid of going to church and had not been to any church in forever, so it was super awesome to see her there and at the baptisms as well. They are from Maceió, Brazil, and so they speak really really fast and their accent is super awesome haha. I´m guessing it would be like the southern accent of the United States haha.

Colin and Elder Cunnington

 Girlade and Girleide Baptism

Colin and Girlade and Girleide

Colin and his roommate Elders
Right now, we´re teaching the sister of two members in the ward. The parents of these kids are super against the church, and so they didn´t let the youngest sister be baptized for a long time (she´s 12 years old) and so she´s been going to church with her two older sisters for 2 years without being baptized. But then the mom told the oldest sister that she would let her be baptized this week!! Her name is Brenda and she knows like everything about the church! haha She´s very intelligent. She´s going to be baptized on Saturday this week and everyone in the ward is freaking out about it because they all know her and know that she wants to be baptized so bad. It´ll be great!! I really want to teach their parents, but I´m not quite sure how to approach them yet but it´ll work out.

Okay!! Cooper freaking became the assistant in Guatemala!!!!!!! That´s so awesome. I´m really happy for him. He really deserves it with the hard work that he´s put in in his mission. I had to put all the puzzle pieces together to figure it out because he wouldn´t just come out and tell me! But whatever. I´m happy for him.

Other than that... nothing much happened. I really do like Elder Cunnington. He has the same ideas that I do and we pretty much agree on everything. He´s a great companion and I´m excited to work with him. he got food poisoning and so he´s been throwing up all day today. But it was funny haha because I was taking a shower and he started banging on the door and was saying "I´ve gotta throw up I´ve gotta throw up!!"" haha it was so funny I just threw my towel around me soaking wet and ran outside the bathroom with just my towel on so he could throw up. Hahahaha Maybe you guys had to be there...:/

Love you guys!!! Everything´s going great here! Tchau!!!

Elder Hanson

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

July 14, 2014 - Brazil Goiania Mission - Uberaba - Week 76

Dear Family,

     This week was cray. We didn´t have a baptism this week, but Tânia went to the temple!!! Haha she loved it so much. She just did confirmations, which is fine, because she didn´t have all of the names of her ancestors yet, and there were a million people at the temple. I don´t know why there aren´t more temples in Brazil!! There are more than a million members here and there´s only like 7 temples in all of Brazil. People were coming to the Campinas temple from all over the place because it was the closest temple to them. But whatever. It´ll work out. Tania also already got a calling haha. I´m not really quite sure what it is yet though, haha  it´s like a well being calling type thing and she´ll help people like get jobs and stuff, but still! Haha she already has a fudging calling.
     So transfers were this week!! My new companion´s name is Elder Cunnington (Scott Cunnington) American, and he´s from Eagle Idaho! (which is like super close to Boise). But I really do like him! He´s pretty tranquilo but he´s already been a zone leader in another zone for a long time so he knows what he´s doing haha. It is super weird, there´s two American zone leaders in Brazil :/. Let´s see how that works out haha. He´s ending his mission, he goes home in two transfers, so maybe I´ll "kill him" (this is slang for when you stay with your companion until he goes home haha). But I´m really excited to work with him.
     So we have 3 dates for this Saturday with the relatives of Alisson. We haven´t really been able to teach them this past week, but they went to church and still have a date for Saturday. Their names are Gerleide, Gerlane, and Genival. They´re children, but we´ll be able to baptize them, because Alisson lives with his brother and sister-in-law
 and they really want to get baptized as well. They´ve agreed to get married and get baptized after!! So we´re helping them out with that. 
     We also started teaching Tania´s daughter!!! Her name is Hanna and she´s about 24 years old (she´s in that picture that I sent you guys). We taught her about the Resoration, and she loved it! She wasn´t super interested before, but after she saw the huge change that happened with Tania, she got more interested. She´s never been religious in her life, but she wants to change that. We marked a date with her for the 26th!! Pray for her that she may be able to get baptized as well!!!!
     That´s about it! My time is winding down on my mission....:( Haha Elder Cunnington made that apparent to me as well. He was like "When I go home, you´ll only have two transfers left". But don´t worry! I´m not trunky at all haha and I don´t plan on being lol.
Love you guys. Os amo demais.

Elder Hanson

Monday, July 7, 2014

July 7, 2014 - Brazil Goiania Mission - Uberaba - Week 75

Dear Family,

Hey guys! It seems like everything just keeps getting better and better with each passing week haha. We had another amazing week this week. But first, I want to say that that countdown thing that Kate and Isabelle made was probably the cutest thing I´ve ever seen hahaha, I loved it and realizing that I only have 172 days makes me want to cry :(. 

TÂNIA GOT BAPTIZED THIS WEEK!!!!! WHOOOO!!!!! So freaking awesome. Most chosen and most prepared person thus far on my mission. Literally, the miracle of my mission. Guys, she freaking made invitations and quoted a scripture from the Book of Mormon in the invitation about baptism (Alma 7). So awesome. She invited so many people to the baptism and after the confirmation on Sunday, she had a huge lunch at her house with a bunch of the ward members. It was so awesome. She talked with the Bishop on Saturday and got her temple recommend!!! She's going to The Campinas temple on Friday!!!!! She´s so excited. She also wrote down her testimony and bore it at Sacrament Meeting on Sunday. Everyone was shocked at how spiritual it was. Everyone was like "she´s gonna be the new Relief Society President!!" hahaha best thing ever. I´ll send a bunch of pics too. Oh haha also, right after she got baptized, she was so happy that she looked at me and just gave me a giant hug! Haha it came out of nowhere and I was so not prepared for it. She felt super bad after, but the entire ward loved it. (Don´t worry, I repented, even though it wasn´t my fault :/)

Alisson also got baptized as well!! The Lord is just preparing so many elect people and we just have to trust in Him and stay worthy so that we can continue enjoying these blessings. Alisson also had a huge change in his life and he is so awesome.

Tania and Alisson's Baptism

Me, Elder Bezerra, Alisson and Lenilton

Elders and a Sister from the Ward in Uberaba

Saying Goodbye to Elder Bezerra and Neeley

Tania and her daughter before the baptism

Tania's party after her baptism

Tania's party

Our Chapel in Uberaba

Alright, well we had surprise transfers this week!! I wasn´t transferred, but Elder Bezerra was. I was super surprised but it was sad for him to say goodbye to the members and recent converts. They all love him and they were all super depressed about it haha. I said goodbye to him this morning and my new companion, Elder Cunnington, will get here on Wednesday. One more transfer as zone leader haha. I´ll stay in a trio with the Elders I live here until then. I´m by myself as zone leader for two days :/

For the 4th, I did a conference call with all the Americans and we sang the national anthem. Yeah, that´s about all we did haha. For lunch that day, the member knew that it was the 4th and so she made banana bread for us haha. It was surprisingly really good lol.

Love you guys!! So happy with everything and holy crap everyone looks so different than I remember them! (especially Noah, Carson, and Annie))

Elder Hanson