Monday, July 3, 2017

Happy 4th of July from Brazil 07.03.2017

Hey everyone,

     Well this week was another week of transfers. I was transferred, after just 2 weeks in Juiz de Fora, to Nova Friburgo. It is a city that is really pretty in the mountains. It is a decent size, but it is really long and not very wide. It is in between huge hills and the neighborhoods on the sides are on the hills. It is different. It is really cold here though. I never thought it would be as cold as it is on my mission as it is right now. I don't walk anywhere without a sweater or jacket. I am now the companion of Elder Cruz. He has 3 months in the mission field and is really excited. I can already tell that it will be a good transfer. 

     As for the work it is going well. The last transfer they had 5 baptisms and we have been keeping those recent converts going with some visits and starting to build a new group of investigators. They had worked a lot with this group,but didnt have much to work with after they were baptized. But it is going well. We have found a few people here and there and one family of 5 that has a lot of potential.

     This last Friday I did a baptism interview with an investigator of the other dupla and she was more than ready to be baptized. The only down side was that I had to walk 2 hours to get there. Elder Rufo told me it would be a long walk, but I never imagined this. It was funny because when we were returning I saw a highway sign saying Nova Friburgo. So I think I may have left Nova Friburgo. But in the end it was a baptism so worth it. 

     This week was testimony meeting at the church and so there were lots of testimonies being shared. There were lots of children bearing testimony about how they know the church is true and about baptism. It was good because we are trying to teach the younger brother of a recent convert called Gleyson that has 8 years and he was hesitant about letting him be baptized because he thought he was too young. But after the meeting he seemed to open up a bit more to the idea. 

Today we had to go to the center of the city to pay the water and electric bill and then O bought food to start cooking in the mornings. For the last 4 months I have just been eating 2 ham and cheese sandwiches for breakfast and I decided to change that. I will start with some pancakes, crepes, french toast, german pancakes, and breakfast burritos. I know have a bit more time because I am not going crazy on the exercise. Just putting my hand down on the tile floor takes away the desire to do push-ups. haha its sad I know, but true.

The elders here are Elder Cruz, Elder Guiterres(Argintinian/German), and Elder Rufo. I am a district leader, which  means I have to get the weekly numbers of the other missionaries in my district and have divisions with the zone leaders. 

How was the traveling to Nova Friburgo?

Well i had to take 3 buses and wait for 2 hours in between the rides. The road to go there is really beautiful though and go through a canyon like thing. 

What is the new house like?

The house is in the perfect place. It is a little small, but it is okay because it is literally next door to the church. Not much space to exercise, but it is really cold anyway so I am not doing a whole lot.

How is the new area?  Do you have some good investigators?  

The area is pretty good. It is flat in the middle and then has hills on the sides. It is not a typical city because it is pretty narrow but goes on forever. That means we do a lot of walking. We receive a little bit extra to take a few buses here and there though. As for investigators there aren't a ton yet. There were 7 baptisms in the last 2 transfers here and they baptized but let up a bit and didnt' have many investigators after they baptized that group. But we are starting to find some people and we found 1 family that might have potential.

How big is the ward?

This Sunday there were 91 but the record here has been 120. 

It looks like it's pretty cold there in Nova Friburgo...I hope you're staying warm.

I don't know if you saw but I bought a fleece to work and stay warm, because it is really really really cold here. Waking up in the morning is like waking up at Bear Lake. If you move you are instantly cold. I haven't been this cold in a while and yesterday we were working in a neighborhood a little higher and it was raining and had a lot of wind and my skin turned a little purple. I can easily say that it was the coldest day I have had here. 

Until next week!
-Elder Smith

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