It has been quite the week and quite the morning! We sent off Elders Carrel and Halpin in grand style today and with their embarking and that of their group things just got a lot crazier here in Missão Brasil Londrina. We lost seven zone leaders today and an assistant and the changes are DRASTIC. But let's see what happened this week.
We made lots of juice this week, which was excellent and the weather got really unbearably hot for the first time in about a year. It's summer in full force again. We spent a couple of hours this week teaching the young son of a member who will turn eight in December, and whose parents asked us to come and teach him the lessons. We taught the first two and not only did it go really well (they made cinnamon rolls to thank us, don't worry - nothing on yours, Mom : ) but we made a good member friend who I'm sure will help us teach and find in the future.
We also visited less actives a little bit, and we had a day that we went out just to make a 100 contacts in the day. We didn't quite get there with forty something but we did find some excellent people to teach that wanted to go to church. We watched the district meeting in Elder Carneiro´s district again and it was well planned and had a wonderful spirit. He was called as a zone leader this week and will be sorely missed here in Marilia.
We went to Ourinos to do an interview again, I also interviewed in Marilia, but in Ourinhos we spent Friday working. I went with Elder Haws. It was so much fun! It seemed like everyone we talked to wanted to go to church! And the interview turned out well, they baptized Saturday night. I got burnt as well, beet red. After the interview Friday night we went out and got burgers at Charly's, a joint started by a guy who went to high school in Corpus Christi and decided to create an American hamburger place. It was good but it just didn't quite have the feel of an American place, because the burger came with too few onion rings and had like a 25 real price tag. Well enjoyed though and with Heinz ketchup! The guy likes us because we are Americans so we took a picture. I'm sure it's excellent advertising to have Americans in your American burger place.
It was almost 9:30 so we made a mile sprint with a pound of burger in us to get home in hot Brasilian night climate. I feel more out of shape than an asthmatic hippo!
Saturday morning we came back to Marilia and taught a family of returning less actives, especially their kids, one of whom will be baptized next Sunday. I used lots of coloring and stepping stones of the gospel (faith repentance baptism etc) to keep their attention and it was probably one of the funnest lessons I've ever taught. The kids were all very smart and attentive too. When we caught the city bus Saturday to do two more interviews it took extra long and we were almost comatose in these 'people pullers.' BUT and I feel like I'm getting better at recognizing this, the hand of the Lord was at play because when the bus took so long and we missed earlier buses that would have taken us home, on the last one that we got we ran into the husband of a more or less active sister, who has been inactive for sometime. We talked with him, he told us he was a member and not active, and then he came to church in a white shirt and tie Sunday, with a spirit of humility that was wonderful. The joy at the end of the meetings around this lovely man was palpable and very special. I'm very thankful to be a servant of the Lord.
Sunday we also brought three special people to church, one who brought himself. We had given a blessing to his wife earlier in the week and then hadn't had time to go back. He came! and I'm sure will be baptized. We will have to marry him and his wife : )
You're probably wondering who is my new companion. . . I don't know and won't until Wednesday when we will have counsel meeting with the leaders and it will be a surprise.
WHEW! There are so many things I'd like to share! Sunday afternoon we went to the bosque or grove in English as it was Elder Carrell's last day and we wandered around looking at the dense overgrowth and animals.
Not in the pictures are the giant almost Komodo dragon size lizard that we saw that scurried off and also some kind of giant rodent, that looked like a capybara but was smaller, gray and very quietly walking in the forest. The highlight was the wild monkeys! They were awesome! They were mini wild monkeys but they were fast and moved in packs!