Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Letter written June 12, 2012

Letter mailed 06/12/12

Hey family,

I just wanted to get a quick letter off so that you don’t go a lot of time without hearing from me. 

Elder Little and I are going great.  I can’t believe it’s almost been a month since he got here.  It kind of freaks me out.  My mission is passing by so fast!!!  I wake up, get ready, study, and then before I know it, it’s already time to work!!  We make some visits, talk to people on the street, and before I know it, it’s already time to go home, plan, and then I’m in bed again.  It goes by crazy fast.  Can you believe I’ve been out for more than 8 months!!!  Man, I almost start crying when I start thinking about my 1 year mark. 

Anyway, it’s fun being with an American Companion.  We just understand each other better than if I had a Brazilian companion.  We both get excited when the members give us strange fruits, and understand me when I quote Napoleon Dynamite.  It’s fun.  Of course, we have the difficulty of the language; both of us have problems with speaking clearly the language. But, we’re both learning.  Out here, we’re having some cool experiences.  Two months ago, when Amanda was baptized, her cousin, Tabatha came to the baptism.  That same day, Elder Lopes and I went to Amanda’s house to see how she was doing.  Tabatha was there too, and she seemed really curious about the church.  So, we taught her the Restoration, gave her the Book of Mormon, and invited her to read and pray about it.  It was a really spiritual lesson, one of the better ones that Elder Lopes and I taught together.

But weeks past, and we didn’t hear anymore about her.  Tabatha lives in another city, so we couldn’t just past by and see how she was doing.  It was kind of frustrating.  I thought that maybe we had scared her off with the Book of Mormon.

However, yesterday Tabatha came to church in our ward!!  Wow, it was super random, but it was awesome.  So Elder Little and I came by after lunch to talk with Tabatha, and see how she was doing.  We soon found out that Tabatha didn’t get frightened by the Book of Mormon – on the contrary, she had read it every day since we gave it to her.  She’s already in Alma!!  And when she didn’t understand something in the book, she went to lds.org and Mormon.org, and used the resources found there.  Wow, it’s so coot to see somebody with true spiritual hunger.  I don’t really know what we’re going to do, because she lives in another city, but at least, little by little, she’s gaining a testimony of the church!!

Well, like I said, this letter is just a quick little one.  But I want to know how everyone is doing?  How was Mother’s Day?  How did Autumn do with all the tests and finals?  How is she using her summer break?  I can’t believe school’s already out.  How’s Brandon doing?  I get so mad at the girls of your ward. Why do they get mad at Brandon?  My goodness they’re spoiling a perfect missionary opportunity.

Well, I hope you all are doing well.  You are in my prayers.  Continue making the right choices, and be good examples unto others.

Love       Elder Twitchell

OK, I still haven’t sent this letter so I guess I’ll write some more.  These weeks have been pretty good, I’ve been learning a lot.  I’ve been working really hard lately to work together with the ward.  Missionaries shouldn’t have to work alone, and neither should the ward – they need to work in Union.  So I’ve been making meetings with the Bishop and with other leaders.  It’s been going pretty well.  Something I’ve realized is that everyone wants to fulfuill their calling, serve others, or have missionary opportunities, but they just don’t know how.  I’ve been having the opportunity to help the members of our ward with this recently, and it’s been a blessing.  Leadership isn’t about ordering others around, but it’s helping them and inspiring them.  You have to be a good example.

This past week we’ve started teaching a lot of new people (12 in total) so I’ve had the opportunity to present the Book of Mormon to a lot of people.  I think I gave out a Book of Mormon every day this week.  This Book is such a blessing!  It’s kind of hard imagining what it would be like without the Book of Mormon.  My love for the Savior, and his plan for us, has definitely grown through reading.  Something good that I’ve been doing lately is I write down good questions that our investigators ask.  For example “What’s the purpose of Life” or “Why does God allow suffering?”  Then in my personal study, I look for a Book of Mormon scripture that answers that question.  It’s pretty cool. 

Well Elder Little and I continue to work in this great labor here in Brazil.  It’s fun, because he’s still new, so he helps remind me of all the weird stuff here in Brazil.  So, without further ado, here’s my “Weird Stuff in Brazil”

Brazilians Are Talkative!!
Alright, for those who have been in/served in Brazil, they’re probably thinking I’m crazy.  Curitiba is kind of known as having people who are more reserved and/or cold.  And I can see how they would say that.  But, even so, compared to the US, the people here TALK A LOT Man!!!  Sometimes it’s hard to even teach!  (OK, not sometimes, most of the time)  We start teaching about how God is our loving Heavenly Father, and Woosh!! They sweep in, talking up a storm.  Goodness gracious.  Just for you to get an idea about this, the other day we started teaching these two men (they’re brothers) about the restoration.  We got one sentence off, and then, these brothers just started going off.  They talked about their work, crappy co-workers, about how they had visited about 10 churches already, about their favorite pastor, how this pastor speaks in “tongues” sometimes and so forth.  I got a few more sentences out, and one brother started telling me about his son, his first wife, how treacherous she is, and then finished the discussion off nicely by mentioning, rather nonchalantly, that his brother had a drug problem.  And there I was, trying to talk about prophets.  Haha, but it’s good, I like it, it can be pretty entertaining.  They get so excited when a “man of God” comes by that they end up saying just about everything they have to say.

Well, that’s about it, sorry I didn’t get this letter off last week!  I hope everything is going alright with you guys!  Man, I can’t believe it’s summer already.  You’re in my prayers and my thoughts!!  Keep praying for me!!

Love Elder Twitchell

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