Monday, November 3, 2014

Letter 8 with Pictures!

Dear family and friends,
So this was the end of my second week in the field:

Great news, we had our first baptism!!  We had to clean out the font because they haven’t had many here but our convert´s name is Helen and she is 12 years old.  She is the niece of another convert we have named Dudu.  Also this week we have 4 more baptisms this Saturday and more to come!!  The work is moving forward!!!
Crazy thing about religion here is that there are a lot of people here that know the Bible and when we come up to them and trying talking to them about the church they start naming scriptures and when we try to tell them our purpose they cut us off and will not let us say anything.  It is kind of sad.  We have so much to offer but they don’t want to listen

On Tuesday there was a gigantic rainstorm which made us have to go inside and wait it out.  I have noticed that every day that I have been here it has rained except one.  Also that day I got sick to my stomach because I ate so much food at lunch because we don’t eat at any other time during the day. 

Wednesday was slow.  Something didn´t feel right and I don’t know what it was.  The wonderful thing was we finished off the night with 2 great lessons where the Spirit was so present and strong.  Humidity is pretty high here right now because of all the rain that when the sun comes out it feels like a sauna. 
For me not having dinner is so hard because I ran so much at home and would eat so much that when I have lunch I eat so much and in 30 minutes I am hungry again.  This will take some getting used to.

Throughout this week it has been tough for me with my companion.  He doesn’t speak any English and every morning I am just bummed.  Then I read a scripture in the 2nd or 3rd  chapter of 1st Nephi about the brothers Laman, Lemuel, Sam and Nephi.  This scripture talked about the willingness of their replies where Laman and Lemuel were upset that their father had taken them from their home and traveled into the wilderness and they called their father a visionary man. Sam and Nephi responded differently and believed the words of their father and tried to help him with all their might. That made me think, every morning do I wake up with the attitude of Laman and Lemuel or like Sam and Nephi in preparing to do this wonderful work.

Thursday was amazing because out of nowhere I could understand the people so much better and speak with them. Also when we are out at nighttime we have to be back by like 9 because the streets can become dangerous and the police here don’t do anything about it. This city looks like a compound because every house has a metal sliding gate that is covered in sheet metal that a person cannot stick their hands through. These sweet people live behind these protective doors all the time.  It makes me realize how blessed we are in the United States!

Funny thing, here in Brazil the ants are gigantic and the ant hills look like termite mounds!! I thought of my mother instantly because she REALLY hates ants. I am attaching a picture.

Friday we did companionship trades for a day and so I got to be with elder Rivera which was so much fun. During the time we were doing street contacts we found a girl and started talking with her.  All of a sudden this guy came up and yelled at us and interrupted and said if you preach about Jesus give me 2 real´s (Brazilian money is called a real) that I can buy bread and we did because Christ would not turn anyone away.  I asked Elder Rivera and he said that this man does this every day that he sees them which is like 3 to 4 times a week.

Halloween is not really big here and I miss our neighborhood and all the little kids but there is a member here that loves candy corn so mother could you send me some.  Also another big thing here is Coca Cola. Everybody drinks it and when I say I don’t everybody looks at me weird.  Soda in general is big here. One time Elder Figereudo and I saw a family loading 30 2-1/2 half liter bottles into the back of their car.

There is the week for you all and now I will prepare for this week.
Elder Hoopes

P.S  I am attaching 2 pictures.  One is of the ant hill and one is of my district.

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