Since I didn’t get much email from David this week other than three unidentified pictures of random zoo animals and some graffiti, I will share a few random tidbits instead of a typical post.
From Another Perspective
Elder Marcus Hunt describes (on his blog) working with David this past week:
“[Thursday night] I was feeling a little down, so I did some yoga with Elder Burt and I cheered right up, ha ha.
Then on Saturday, we did a division and I went with Elder Burt. We went back to our normal favela area of Pery Alto and that’s when the miracles started happening!
. . . A random guy in the street said “hi” to us, so we talked to him and he has been to church a ton of times. Previous missionaries have already taught him everything, so we marked a baptismal date with him for the next day!
We had a lesson with a progressing investigator, who all of the sudden didn’t want the church anymore. I tried my best with everything I knew to convince him, but I couldn’t. But then Elder Burt testified in his broken Portuguese with a SUPER strong spirit, and the man couldn’t deny the Holy Ghost which he was feeling, and he came to his senses and said he knew that the church was true. Elder Burt was very powerful in that moment; it was awesome.
Then we found a less active member who is trying to get back to church, and he took us to meet his mother and 20-year-old brother named Rapahel. We had an amazing lesson and marked firm baptismal dates with them both; it was amazing!!! Then the man gave us a ride home and bought us Northern Brazilian food!”
About Those Baptisms
I asked David about how it seems that many people there are willing to commit to being baptized so quickly, which is so different from how things work here. This is what he said:
What you should know about Brasil is that it is very different. If people here are willing to be baptized that soon, they are willing to stay committed. It is the people who want to take more time . . . who go inactive after baptism. It is a completely different world here—a very different pace than in the states.
With Nacho Libre
David’s first companion and amazing teacher, Elder Borba, is finishing his mission tomorrow and heading home to Uruguay. He speaks four languages and David says that when he speaks English, “he sounds like Nacho Libre.” Nice insight here:
Elder Borba is leaving Tuesday. I will miss him. I will be getting a new companion who is from Argentina, but I haven’t met him yet. You can’t ever grow if you are comfortable—which is why as soon as you get comfortable, you get a new challenge or something changes. This way you are always growing and improving your spirit.
A Cat Tale
This is one of my favorite bad-night stories David sent when he first arrived:
Okay, I hate cats. The other night there was a pack of cats waltzing through our neighborhood somewhere around 1:00 in the morning. I thought it was just a bad dream. They were meowing louder than Limone’s bark (Limone was our old Bassett hound)–they were so loud! When I woke up the next morning my companion asked me if I heard the gatos. It was only then that I realized that the cats were not in my dreams and they were the reason I was so tired. Chato! Loudest cats I have ever heard. I could sleep through Limone.
And finally, my favorite closing line from four months of letters:
With over-enthusiastic excitement and horrible spelling,