Missionary blog of Sister Emily Heyer, Brazil Campinas Mission, Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

fala TUDO!

This week FLEW by. Monday was Pday and we went to the home of a member in Campinas. He owns a school here called Wizard which teaches English and other languages but primarily English. Needless to say its very successful. We had fun eating tons of amazing food and cake and jumping on the trampoline and playing tennis and pool and sleeping and stuff. Then after we went to the park and played this really fun game involving hitting people with balls and lots of running. (I know that was so specific....sorry....hahaha). It was really fun. Pdays are never ever days to rest.....that's for sure...but they are always really fun.
Tuesday we had a divisão (split) with other sisters in a different area. It was interesting. They work hard but their area is a lot harder than ours is. Ward members aren't very helpful and people are always too busy to go to church. It was interesting and a little scary to see what lays ahead for me in other areas. :/ 

Wednesday we had our first interviews with President Perrotti. It was fine. I asked him some questions that I had and he asked if all was good with me and I said yes and then he said to keep up the good work basically and that was it. Then Sister B told me that in her interview the first thing that he said was "Sister Heyer fala TUDO! TUDO!" Aka....Sister Heyer speaks everything! He said he was very surprised by how much I know and how fast I talk and stuff after just one month. He said that out of all the Americans that arrived with me that I am speaking the most and very well so he was very relieved that there was at least one who is adjusting quickly. I was very surprised by this because I certainly don't feel I know everything or speak well but....I was very happy he thinks so. I think it's because my companion is so helpful and has really pushed me to talk and keep talking and has really prepared me for leading the way here with a new Sister. I am very grateful. Sometimes I still don't understand what people are saying but usually  I can understand everything. Which is such a relief. 

It was neat because after the meeting we had a de-stressing activity and threw water balloons yelling things that were hard and "throwing them away". It was actually hilarious. These are some things our zone yelled.

Sister G- I AM NOT AN AMERICAN (because she is really really pale and everyone always things she is American. Especially when she is with me. But she is from Curitiba Brazil)
Elder D- I AM NOT JAPANESE (He is part Korean....but he is from Virginia...and all the Brazilians always ask seriously if he is Japanese and apologize that they don't have chopsticks for him and stuff...its hilarious)
Elder B- PEOPLE WHO ASK FOR CONFERENCES WITH PRESIDENTE! (he's the assistant president)
Sister Perrotti- DIRTY HOUSES (she had just checked the houses of some elders.....)

These were just a few but it was really funny. :) haha. 

As for the work this week.....it was awesome. :) We clapped at doors for a while the other day and we found one woman who was the sweetest thing ever. And she said she was looking for a church. She has been to many churches but something was always missing. But it is really important to her. She has amazing faith and loves photography and said she wants us to come back because she has tons of questions about life and God and hasn't been able to find anyone to answer her questions yet. We told her to write down all of her questions and we will find the answers together and answer as many as we can with her. I am very confident that we can answer her questions. In Preach my Gospel it says that the gospel has the answers to every question. She is what we call a golden investigator. She is prepared by the Lord. I am very excited to visit her this week. Pray for her and that we can help her find the answers she has been looking for. 

The same day we walked past a salon we pass everyday and a woman who owns it opened the door and stopped us. Turns out her daughter is learning English and wants to go the the US next summer but right now she really wants to practice conversing in English. So in two Saturdays I will go back and teach her English and help her practice....and afterwards she said we can share our message. And she also said she will give us free manicures and pedicures. Which is awesome but is a lost cause for me right now so I won't but it was very nice of her. Anyways I am really excited because I finally have a use for English and being American! Its actually useful right now. :) I am really excited for this opportunity to teach English but also an open door to teach the gospel too. :) 

Last but not least this weekend is our last weekend together before transfers and we get to finish it with amazing things!!! Our investigators A and T will be married on Saturday in the church by the bishop....and after the wedding....will be BAPTISED!!!!! :D Its AMAZING. They are amazingggg. I cant even begin to describe. They have endured many trials individually throughout life and about 8 months ago they found each other. They were living together when Sister B first found them about 2 months ago. She was baptized when she was 8 but was never confirmed (so because lots of time has passed she will be baptized again). Her sister is a member but she was never interested. He never had a solid religion and was really lost in drinking and bad relationships. They started taking the lessons and they went to church every week. They loved everything about it. A said it was exactly what she has been looking for. They flushed all their alcohol and coffee down the toilet the day we taught the commandments with them. They went to the court and got a marriage license and yesterday was their baptismal interview. They arranged everything about their wedding so they could be baptized the same day. Their wedding invitations also have an invitation to their baptism after. A doesn't even care that all her hair and makeup will get ruined right after the wedding or that they can't party all night. She is almost more excited for baptism than the wedding. He is too. They bare their testimonies with us every time we visit and they always pray. They even said yesterday that one day they want to serve a mission together! Right now they are only in their late 20s but they already are planning to serve when their last kid is on his/her mission! Kids they haven't even had yet! Its amazing. They are so ready and so excited and its all so beautiful. They asked us to sing at their wedding and their baptism. They invited any and all missionaries we know to come. They want everyone to come see their lives change for the better. It is a dream. That's what they both keep saying....its a dream. It really is. They are wonderful people and they are about to change the future of many generations with their example. They will be confirmed this Sunday as well. And they already set a date to be sealed next year in her planner. I will be here....and I hope that I can go and witness this. A said she is more excited to be sealed than to be married because they understand it means so much more. Pray for them that all will go smoothly. They already had their car stolen this week among other trials to work against them. But they are still standing firm. Pray that they will continue to carry on. <3 

Anways all is well here. I am sad that Sister B is leaving. I am grateful for everything she has taught me. I feel prepared to work and carry on because of her. <3 I am 98% sure I will continue on here in Valhinos but I will let you know next Monday! <3 Love you all! You are all in my prayers. <3 


Monkey sighting!

[This is being posted a week late because we were traveling last week.]

Well this week was crazy busy and I want to write it all so brace yourself for a long one and possibly very out of order email. Sorry. ;)

Okay this week I saw my first monkeys! Two! They were very timid and very little so it wasnt as exciting as I thought it would be butttt they were very cute and I got a crappy picture for proof for sam. I was mostly excited to tell the kids. :) 

Monday was p-day but sister a and b were in a meeting with president so sister g and I stayed here and relaxed and shopped for gifts for our "moms". Mine will be leaving in 2 weeks. Transfers in 2 weeks. Time is flying by. Anyways because sister a and sister b didn't get p-day Monday they had p-day Tuesday and we did a split. While sister G and I were working we encountered a man who was convinced that God and Jesus were one person and wanted to argue with us. He had scriptures and no matter what we said he argued or scoffed at. So finally we just invited him to church again and left. It was very frustrating that he was so cold hearted. But it made us look up more scriptures to use. And when we got back we prayed for him to learn the truth someday. It was interesting. 

We also taught two people who they have been teaching for weeks and won't be baptized unless the church gives them money.....it's ridiculous. We had to go teach them and basically Sister G said that if they don't go to church this weekend they won't continue to teach them. I bore my testimony and shared with them a scripture about faith and blessings but I don't know if it really did any good. It was a good learning experience for me though. 

We also taught one of their progressing investigators the plan of salvation and before we even started the lesson Sister G told them that I don't speak good Portuguese so she will teach the lesson. It was very very frustrating. I know a lot about the 2nd lesson and if anything I can share scriptures or bare testimony. But she just went on and on and on and then bore her testimony and ended and asked questions and then they started talking about other things. I was very upset. It was the first time that I questioned if I was truly a missionary here. I talked with Sister B for a long time and she was very kind. She reminded me that Sister G is very young and doesn't know anything about working with people who don't know Portuguese perfectly. She also reminded me that I know I'm a missionary and can teach and the Lord does too and the rest doesn't matter. She is of course right. 

Ran into a lady from our ward whose kids have chicken pox right now. And we rode with her kids in the car on Sunday..... -_- Please pray I don't get it. 

Sooo the next story might give mom a heart attack but please don't worry. We were tracking in a neighborhood and we were having a lot of success. We taught a lesson and found a whole family who wanted to hear the message and so we were feeling really confident. We saw a man standing in front of his house who was about 28 or so and Sister B wanted to talk to him. The minute we started talking to him this really dark and unsettling feeling washed over me. But the man was really nice and agreed to be taught and even said he wanted to be baptized Sunday "as soon as possible". Sister B was super excited and called Elder P about interviews and everything. I expressed to her that I didn't feel good about it and that something wasn't right with the man. But she told me that she didn't feel that way and everything was fine. She called him a golden investigator and that the Lord gives us people prepared....so I tried to listen and brush it off because....I mean what do I know? Anyways we returned the next day to teach him and we taught him the first lesson and the commandments. He talked with Elder P and everything was perfect. But I still didn't feel good. Then he told us that he helped with an abortion five years ago.We called President Perroti and he said that he could still be baptized but he would have to talk with the bishop first so the bishop can evaluate the situation and talk with president p. I still felt really uneasy but we continued. We walked with him to the church for an activity and to talk with the bishop and while we were walking he told us that he served time in prison for 2 years because he KILLED SOMEONE. Good grief. He wanted to be baptized because he felt extreme guilt for shooting someone. We introduced him to people and tried to act normal and then we asked the ward mission leader to drive him home with another man in our ward. We didn't have a chance to tell them that he killed someone and to be careful so we just prayed in the street after leaving they would be safe. When I got home I was very worried because despite all this and the fact he cannot be baptized (the bishop said straight up he can't for at least 5 years or so of repentance and then maybe he can) Sister B wanted to go back and continue to teach him and the rest of his family! I did not feel good about this at all. I prayed that an answer would come as to what to do. The next morning we got a phone call from Brother J (ward mission leader) and he said that the spirit testified to him that the man killed someone and to tell us we were not to go back. It was very clear and very strong. We will not go back. It is sad because he is truly repentant. And he wants to change. But killing is a sin that just can't be baptized and made whole again. We will continue to pray but we will never go back. I am very grateful for my spiritual promptings about safety. That is one thing I have REALLY noticed here is when we are in any danger I always get promptings of where to go or who not to talk to. The hard part is getting my companion to trust me. I hope that after this experience it will be easier for her to listen. She did talk to me in the kitchen that night and apologized because she realized that I was right. But I am very grateful that I get very clear promptings about our safety. You do not need to worry about us. The Lord is taking good care of us. And also I remember a lot about what you have taught me dad about safety. I even carry my heavy hard water bottle at night so I can smack someone if necessary and I never carry a lot of money. We also let men pass us if they are walking behind us and run through the tunnels if it's night. So far no problems. I can literally feel someone watching over us. I know we will be fine as long as we are obedient and follow spiritual promptings. 

My last story is that our ANCIENT investigators J and G (13 and 9) FINALLY got permission from their grandma to be baptized!!!!!!! It was AMAZING. Truly a miracle because honestly we never thought it would happen. We fasted Tuesday this week their grandma would have her heart softened and sign the papers. And then 3 days later she did. Not only that but she came! Her, their aunt, and 8 of their friends! It was a huge missionary opportunity and their grandma even cried. It was beautiful and truly a miracle. We were so excited. It was awesome. In my mind....their grandma is next. ;) I want to see her baptized before I leave this area in 6 weeks. Its my goal. Pray for her. She smokes 6 packs a day if not more. And drinks. And is Catholic. It won't be easy. 

Anyways sorry its so scattered.
I love you all! 


Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Brace for Grossness

Emily has blisters.  Big ones.  She named them Jeremy and Ricardo.

2 Month Mark

Well...today marks my TWO MONTH MARK ON THE MISSION! Man time flies. It doesn't feel like it has been two months. If it keeps passing this quickly I will be home any day now! Its crazy.

This week was pretty crazy but really good! Monday was P-day of course and went to the park with the Elders again. I played futibol americano with the elders and many were pretty impressed with my spiral (thank you Dad). They definitely don't love it as much as we do. They prefer soccer for sure. hahaha. But it was pretty fun. It would have been more fun if I hadn't been so sick. I had a raging head cold and I was advised to stay in bed all day....but....I didn't. I only get one day a week to get out and do fun things so I loaded my backpack with tissues and sniffled and wiped my eyes and died all day. It wasn't fun. Looking back I should've stayed in bed. The only reason I am better today is because I have wonderful family members and friends with lots of faith that prayed for me and Heavenly Father took pity on my stupidity. But I did get to try a new ice cream flavor. Since I don't know what any of the flavors mean I go alphabetically and get a new flavor every Monday. This week was Acashi or Acabai or something weird...found out the hard way that it is prunes. So I enjoyed (or rather...did NOT enjoy) dried prune ice cream. It was a costly (6 reais) mistake. hahaha. Today I hope my gamble is better. 

Tuesday and Wednesday we traveled with the mission president to Itatibia to go on splits with the sisters there. We did this because Sister B and Sister A are the sister trainer leaders so every week they go to a new area and work with the trainers in those areas. So yes....tomorrow we will go to a new place. I think Junjiea but I don't know....and neither do you so I guess it doesn't matter.... ;)  Anyways it was a very interesting experience. I learned a lot. The best thing was Sister B and I really bonded. And I also got caught up in my journal. The worst part was we had to take the bus back. And I didn't take Dramamine in time. I spent the whole 45 min on the bus breathing deeply and praying. It was the work car sickness I have ever experienced.  Next time I will take it earlier.

The rest of the week was pretty much gone by then but we were able to teach lots of lessons and ALMOST had two baptisms yesterday but L said she wanted to wait until next week because it was too fast. -_-. But they promised next week soooo.....we should have 2 baptisms. Our other investigators are getting married this week! :) So hopefully this weekend we will have 4. We shall see. 

Anyways sorry this isn't as detailed as it usually is. Letters are coming eventually and I will try to have a more exciting week this week. ;) lol.  

I love you so much and I hope your week is awesome! You are always in my prayers! <3 

Sister Heyer