Friday, May 2, 2014

January 13, 2014 - What's a favela?

Mom: Yay, you got your package! Did you get both of them or just the birthday one? 
Chase: Just Christmas

Mom: Dad says regarding the sketchy area that you need to make sure you're being very obedient so you have those blessings of protection

Chase: haha okay I will

Chase: It has two favelas

Carnan: What is favela?

Chase: Look up slums in Brasil on google.

Janurary 13, 2014 - Emeregency Transfer

Hello minha querida familia!!

These past weeks have been super busy and have had lots of changes for me.  I’m sorry I didn’t email you guys last week. I was going to the computer house when we had to go pick up another elder. Then they only had 2 computers for 3 people, so I got dapped up big time. You could say I was a little upset and sad that I didn’t even get to read any of your emails!

For the biggest news, my companion and I got emergency transferred this week on Tuesday!  The area that we’re in is not quite as safe as Ponta da Praia and I honestly was a little nervous coming, but it’s turned out to be really good so far.  The ward here has been sharing a building in Sao Vicente for 2 years waiting for their church to be built and because it’s such a long ways away, there hasn’t been missionaries in their ward for at least 9 months maybe even a year. So when we showed up in Sacrament meeting after getting lost, all we saw were smiles on the members’ faces! They are dedicating the church in 2 weeks!

The sad part about all this is that the blessings and success came a few days before the emergency transfer. We found a total of 10 people through referrals and contacts that literally are amazing.  One family in particular was super cool. We originally went there to find a young man’s friend and talk to him, but he wasn’t there so we talked to his mom who turned out to be someone who wanted more peace in her life.  She accepted all of our challenges and all of the things we asked her to do.  She reads the Book of Mormon all the time. She brings it to work and when she has some down time, she reads the Book of Mormon! Like can you say called of God!! In another lesson, we talked about the Word of Wisdom. They don’t have huge problems, but they do drink coffee and the dad smokes and drinks. What was amazing is we asked them if they truly had a desire to stop and do the things the Lord wanted them to do. They said yes so we asked them to gather everything they had that was against the word of wisdom and put it on the table.  They did and then we asked if we could take it out of their house and throw it away for them, so they wouldn’t have the temptation.  They gladly accepted and said please throw it as far away as you can!  Ah they’re great. 

I ended up staying a little longer in Ponta da Praia because we thought that they would be able to get baptized this past Saturday or Sunday.  Unfortunately, during the baptismal interview we found out that they weren’t actually married. They just wore rings to show their commitment. So the baptisms didn’t happen yesterday, but we asked them to pray to Heavenly Father about getting married because He won’t lead you astray.  It was pretty difficult to say the least that we finally had some success in the area and the members were taking us to their friends’ houses almost daily and then we are transferred.  Obviously there is a reason for this and I think that there is someone waiting for me here.

I have lost a little bit of weight but nothing serious.  I have never been so hot in my life. Santos is like a freaking oven on earth.  We hit 49 degrees Celsius which is almost 120 but then factor in humidity. Sleeping isn’t a blessing because even at night its 80-90 degrees outside.  New Year’s was the only day that I slept haha.  I slept from 10:30 to 2 right when the rest of the elders were going to sleep.  They go crazy here for fireworks; my companion filmed it.  I have a feeling that I might train or have a new companion next week, but we won’t know till Sunday night.  

I got the Christmas package; I really liked all the sour stuff. It was gone in an hour after I opened it.  The tie was way cool and my companion loved his stuff, too.  I think I have worn the socks a couple times now hahah.

December 30, 2013 - Happy New Year

Surprisingly, homesickness is better. It was hard saying good bye, but it gave me a ton of strength and I worked harder than I ever have this past week!  It was crazy because I wasn’t getting tired or sore and Portuguese was flowing good! We found some new people and I think they will get baptized. They have some problems that need help, but it’s not worthiness issues, it’s more technical stuff now!!  

About the clothing & sending stuff just go for it, music anything that’s in a animated movie is fine, so if you like it, just put it on because I will most likely like it too!  Tell the family thanks for the money for the Ipod. It will be really nice to get it and listen to music.  I also can listen to Piano Guys and Lindsey Sterling.

I got so excited talking to you guys I forgot to tell you what happened at our conference on Christmas!  Basically President Cabral is one with the spirit!  At the end of the doctrine part of the conference, he wanted everyone to sing “I Know My Redeemer Lives”, but the part that was so cool but nuts at the same time was that he said he knew who would say the closing prayer, but he wouldn’t tell us.  He said during the song the spirit will be very strong because of the hymn and that we would have to recognize whether or not the spirit was telling us to give the prayer.  The person who is touched by the spirit will come to the pulpit and offer the closing prayer. If it is not the person who I already know it is then I will ask them to sit back down, and we will wait until the correct person comes up!  It was so crazy because I was feeling the spirit a lot and had a feeling to go up, but just as the song ended I didn’t feel it quite as intensely and out of the corner of my eye an elder was walking to the pulpit and offered the prayer without even taking a glimpse at president. It was super cool!   We found new ways to find people this past week after Christmas and it seems to be working so far, but we still need to continue in the work!

Love you, Dad. You are my hero.

December 26, 2013 - Skyping is the Best!

The best part of this Christmas, was Skyping.

December 23, 2013 - Brazil's Summer has Officially Started

The first official day of summer started yesterday haha.  The seasons are the exact opposite of the states!!   

We have been trying to bring back several less active members to church and they have actually been coming back so that’s been awesome because it feels like they are investigators hah.  Our first one is in his 50s and is very cool. When we went to go talk to him, he wasn’t there but his dad was. He wasn’t a member so we asked if we could leave a message with him and he said okay. You have to understand though that his dad is getting up there in age. He has trouble hearing and sometimes he is just out of it, but a soul is still a soul to Heavenly Father. The funny part was that we were talking about baptism and asked if he would get baptized and he asked how.  So we showed him the picture of John the Baptist and Jesus Christ and said exactly like Jesus Christ by immersion.  He then asked if the water was hot or cold.  We said whatever you want, then he said, “Hot because I won’t get baptized if its cold.” hahah I didn’t laugh super loud,  but I chuckled a little.  He also asked about how high the water was because it was super high on Jesus and he thought he might drown if it was that high. We told him it would be at his waist line and then he was okay with it!  So our goal is to bring the less active son so that he will bring his dad! 

The other less active man is also pretty cool. We were talking with our ward missionary about him and you won’t believe this because I didn’t either. When Walter was baptized 5 or 6 years ago he had a fear of the water or something, but he literally wore goggles when he was getting baptized - the kind with the nose piece.  I was just in shock when I found out. 

One of our old investigators has been doing good.  He is living with his girlfriend right now and that’s our problem.  He really likes the members here and so does his girlfriend, but they don’t want to get married until this next upcoming year.  I really hope they get baptized!

We still haven’t had a ton of work and it turns out the end of the year is the worst and best time of the year for missionaries: best because we get to talk to family, but worst because the work is bad for the entire mission!  But it’s been good here!

Other things that I found out this week is that if you look up the picture of Alma baptizing, on the far left side the man standing their looks a lot like Chuck Norris.

We had our Christmas dinner in the ward this week and it was so good!!!  We had a churrasc√£o!  It was kind of like Rodizio, but they didn’t have all of those meats, just some.   We decided to fast the night before to prepare for it. I ate so much.

I can’t believe Brookie is getting married!


In sacrament meeting, the institute director spoke about faith.  He said as members we need more than just faith.  Everyone in the world has some form of faith, but we as latter day saints need faith that goes and does!  I just thought it was really profound and liked it a lot.

Another part is about the Spirit of Christmas.  We always talk about how the spirit of Christmas is the spirit of Christ, but if you break it down one step further what is the spirit of Christ?  It’s in Moroni 7 -charity.  The Spirit of Charity is the ability to love and serve with compassion and I had never thought of that before, but it is so true.  

Love you guys and I think right now the day to Skype is the 25th or 26th, but almost all of our members are leaving so we need to find a spot for certain, but I will have a member email you and let you know for sure today or tomorrow!