Maceio Brazil Mission Assignment

Maceio Brazil Mission Assignment
Serving in God's Army


1 October 2012

Dearly Beloved, haha

What a pleasure it is to be writing you this fine day (even if it's raining).

I received your letter Mommsie, Samuel´s, Sarah's as well, and from Ms. Carli Treu :) I was able to send back replies today to all of them so let me know when you get them! Thank you so much for writing me all of you. It really means a lot :) my hands cramping, haha.

And about packages I really don't know, I would look in that pamphlet that I left. I know that if its over a certain weight I have to pay a bunch of money to get it, or else it will just be sent back to you. I don't know... but! It's worth a shot. ;)

Hey couple questions... how's Greg doing? Have you heard anything about his papers or if he got his call or not?

This week, honestly, went by really fast. We have so many people that we have to visit and work with that it's almost overwhelming. This week we're going to concentrate on slimming down to only work with those investigators who are progressing, reading, praying, going to church, etc. That way our time is more efficiently spent, we spend a lot of time walking around going from investigator to investigator trying to catch them in their house, but most of the time they aren't there. We had another baptism last week of a boy who had lessons from other missionaries went to church had all the lessons and wanted to be baptized but lost contact with the missionaries... it's the second time it's happened. He just came up to us and started talking to us like he knew us and said he still wanted to be baptized. Miracles of the mission. He was able to get baptized and confirmed last weekend. Another excitement is Esteffani. She's an 11 year old girl who looks and acts like she's 16, she's honestly been reading the Book of Mormon praying and going to church. She's already read like 200 pages in the Book of Mormon, WOAH! yeah, she says she reads at school and at home, so every time we go and visit her she always has questions and wants to talk about the Lamanites and Nephites... it's really cool. And her mom is supportive of her, her mom drinks coffee every morning so we're still working on her, she's next, wahaha. Esteffani, went to church with us on Sunday, it was cool cause we got to ride the bus with her instead of walking two miles uphill, and busses here are more like roller coasters, they go so fast! haha, AND we saw her mom at the mall downtown where we go to pick up money for the week to come, and she said she was shopping for more Sunday clothes for Esteffani to go to church in that were a little more modest!!!!!! Woot Woot water here we come! I'm super pumped for General Conference this coming week and yup it´ll all be in Portuguese, so I'm hoping to understand at least 63% of what the translator is saying, cause the prophets speak very metaphorically, big words. I've been trying to read the talks from April in the Liahona but they're so difficult cause the words are hard to grasp. And Esteffani said she wanted to come watch conference too!

That is for sure the highlight of this week Esteffani´s progress, and of course a baptism. :)

A man came up to me and my companion, said that he wants to change and take his family to church. He also said that he´s killed two people... uh... but we're still gunna work with him. but not gunna lie its kinda scary. but! he wants to change so that's good:)
We've made a lot of friends with non-members, people who smoke and drink just off the canal by their houses, and when we pass by they put everything away and talk to us, ask a bunch of questions and invite them to church and activities. One of them, an older gent, has started to come to activities (soccer) and has really enjoyed himself.

Today we went to Walmart to print photos, a huge mall to get cash and walked past Sam´s club on the way. We had lunch at Subway, and walked past a McDonalds. All this was in the area right next to our's, There is seriously a division here between the rich and the poor, the people close to the beach and the people on the hill where I work. Me and my comp walked to the beach today, nothing like feeling the ocean breeze and seeing the clear greenish blue water. Ugh wanted to get in so bad but, I'm a missionary, haha.

Today we have a family home evening and were watching "17 miracles" with a family, and we only have it in English, wahahahaha YES! and subtitles in Portuguese. So that should be interesting trying to explain everything in Portuguese. Pumped!

Family, friends, especially my mom and my dad, I love you all so much and miss you, I'm beyond thankful for the opportunity I have to learn and grow in the gospel. This is really what I want. Thank you for all you love and support. Love you all so much and miss you like crazy.

Elder Ralph

Maceio Brazil

Questions and Answers to and from Ben:
Your dad said that I needed to ask questions about the weather, your house, do you cook for yourself, what's your schedule, etc.? Oh right, our house is fairly modest, ants and cockroaches running around everywhere but it's still nice. We buy our food together and Elder Honorato cooks, but he´s teaching me. :)
Animals? Horses, Donkeys, Rats, Chickens, Pigs, Roosters, little Geckos, bunch of birds, cooking a lot of noodles and rice :)
 What do you have to cook with? Is there electricity? What voltage do you have? Have you used your converted? I have 220 voltage and cook with gas, uh microwave, stove, haven't needed to use my converter yet but I will soon to charge my camera.
 How big are the cockroaches? What is the strangest thing you've eaten? (from Jenna) Cockroaches are about an inch and a half long, strangest thing I've eaten... horse and pig feet.. yeah strange but tasted good. :)
 But coconut juice is the BOM! mmmm so good! what else?
 Is it fresh coconut juice or canned? Do you cut fresh coconuts yourself? If so, what with? Haha, that's funny, fresh coconut from the nut, and cold.
 Well you just buy the whole coconut and drink the water inside, idk (translation -I don't know) haha, its hard shopping for food that you don't know the name of the food, haha.