Thursday, May 9, 2013

Elder Rodrigues in new area Tatuquara

May 6, 2013
A new area! Arriving in a new area is always a great experience. Getting to know the area, the ward, the investigators, helps me recognize that this same work is being done all over Curitiba, and all over the world. It´s cool, too, because Elder Barkdull already passed through this area. And Elder Brino, too! He finished his mission here.
Tatuquara is a blessed area. I´m having difficulty remembering all of our investigators, because we have so many! We have a lot of people coming to church, and want to be baptized. They just need to get married! This process takes a while here, but while these investigators are trying to get together all of the documents that they need, Elder Rodrigues and I are preparing them for enduring until the end. We´re marking family nights and visits with members with these investigators, so that they have this integration with the ward. Also, a lot of the families that we´re teaching are part-member families. Elder Rodrigues and I talked about these situations, and we´re wanting to complete these families, or at least leave a great impression of the church with these non-members. My vision while I’m here is to focus on the father and head of the household. This work is a bit harder, but when coupled with working with the ward, it leads to long lasting conversion.
Elder Rodrigues is actually from my MTC group, but he was at São Paulo, while I was at Provo. He´s a Brazilian from Minas Gerais (Elder Lopes is from Minas Gerais too). Elder Rodrigues is going home a bit after me, in the beginning of October, because Brazilians have a bit more time on the mission than Americans. He being a Brazilian, we decided that speaking Portuguese would be best, because if we spoke in English, I would be the only one understanding. I´m already loving it, being with Elder Rodrigues. He´s like my trusty sidekick. You know in Rush Hour, there´s Jackie Chan and Chris Tucker, beating up all of the bad guys? Well, I’m like Jackie Chan (but I’m not Asian) and he´s Chris Tucker.
It´s funny, there´s an investigator here named Tiago, and his (future) wife, Larissa. They haven´t been baptized yet just because of marriage. So we´re just waiting for their marriage, but in the meantime, they´re learning a lot about the gospel. Tiago got a Triple-combination, and is studying Pearl of Great Price. He already finished the Book of Mormon. He´s a really curious person, and he´s always giving us tough questions. Questions that I’ve never had before on the mission. So it´s good to have him, it keeps me on my toes. One of the questions he gave us was about us being gods through celestial marriage. Wooow, where did he hear about that!? He also made the infamous question, ´´Where is Laban´s sword!?´´ What I would give to know. Last night he asked us if Abraham´s idolatrous father Terah was a believer in God before. (well, at that moment, I got a bit frightened by the question. But Terah had been, in fact, a follower of righteousness before.) It´s been fun.
Sounds like things are going well for you out there. Poor Austin, getting stitches is no fun. He´s seems like a crazy baby. I´m going to get some questions ready for you all for Skype too. This time, the time for Skype was increased to 1 hour!!! It was funny, we were at the Leader Council last Thursday, and the topic of Skype came up. Someone asked the President how long we would have on Skype. President Cordon looked over at Sister Cordon, who quickly blurted out ´´An hour! One Hour!´´ President Cordon then looked at us and said, ´´Ok, it´s going to be one hour this time.´´ haha, of course, this would come from the President´s wife. They´re great, I’m going to miss them when they leave the mission.
Well, I love you all lots. I can´t believe I’m getting to my last Skype call. Eeeesh, it´s going by so quick, I can hardly believe it. Who said two years is a long time, it´s not all that long...

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