Tuesday, December 31, 2013

New Year

Monday, December 30, 2013

Christmas was great, getting to talk to ya'll and getting a new tie and batman shirt!  After we left the house of the member whose computer we used, the bishop stopped us and gave us two Christmas cakes called pantone.  So because the pizza shops were all closed we ate cake for dinner.  We had a big mission meeting with everyone in the area of the old mission office, where everything is really fancy.  Was a lot of fun.  Yesterday we had three baptisms and a devotional.  Was a great day.  The only hard part was saying bye to our district leader. Because only four people are leaving this transfer, and the other three are ap´s, our area is without an official DL, so until further notice I am DL.

Our area has the largest population density of churches in the world!  This week we used our Christmas Eve and morning to go sing at the local bus and train terminals, it was a lot of fun but my voice is starting to get a little sore.  Wednesday is p-day and Thursday is transfers, we are excited to see what will happen.  For New Year´s we don’t have any plans besides working. Sorry this letter isn't very long, talked about everything in our talk for Christmas; let me know if ya'll have any questions about Brasil, I would love to talk about them.  Love ya'll tons and wish the family happy new years!  Love ya'll,
Elder Anderson

Monday, December 23, 2013

Time is flying

Monday, December 16, 2013

Hello Family!!!!!!!!
Hope that everything has been going well, getting ready for Christmas and for the first part of school to end.  I loved the pics of Bethlehem, that’s always a part of Christmas that I really love, especially the bread.  This week was really good, a little weird with Monday being more or less normal and then having p-day on Thursday, but it was a lot of fun to see my friends from the other zones and to talk with them for a while.  On Saturday we had a baptism "festa", baptized 3 for our ward and on Sunday baptized another, will send pic.  We are having a lot of fun in this area; the members are helping a lot, giving us references of their friends and family that aren’t members.  Two of the baptisms were NTM which means that not everyone is a member in the family.  What’s nice about Brasil is that almost everyone lives in family here.  They have a plot of land and have tons of houses that are all family, so we just go from one part of the family to the other, so nice.  After the baptisms they had the Ward Christmas Dinner, but we have a rule in the mission that we can’t stay, we have to go work, so we only got leftovers handed to us yesterday.

We are getting ready to end this transfer, can’t believe that next week is Christmas, doesn’t seem like it at all, so weird. But we are trying to find 5 more people to baptize before the end of the transfer. This week we already found a couple NTM´s to baptize this week and are trying to end our Christmas Program strong.  Luckily it didn’t rain this week, but that just means that it’s going to come this coming week.  Tomorrow marks 5 months!  I am excited already for this coming transfer; I think that I will stay in this area for a while, up to 3 more transfers. 

Friday the 13th passed without anything bad happening; in fact it went really good, because we ordered 2 pizzas and had a party.  Thank the Hancock’s for the flashlight and the small pocket knife that they gave to me, they have come in handy the past couple of weeks with the power being unreliable.  Hope that everything is going well with the grandparents and rest of the family, tell them I said hi!  Good job to the kids with school and with sports and band and cooking and everything else y'all are doing.  I have been feeling the Spirit so strong here, there are lots of people that have been prepared to receive the message of the gospel, and this country is amazing!  Love you all and can’t wait to talk to y'all next week!  
Elder Anderson

Monday, December 9, 2013

Speed up the Work

Monday, December 09, 2013

So we got a call last night saying that we are going to the temple this week so p-day will be Thursday, not today, but we still got to write email!  This week was great.  On Monday we had a mini-hurricane here and it was crazy, I have never seen so much rain in my life.  It was impossible to see the other side of the street.  Lightning hit a tree at the end of the street and it fell on a power line, so we got to use candles for a couple days in our apartment which was actually pretty fun.

We had three baptisms this week!  Two of them are an older couple whose kids have been being baptized one by one. They were Catholic, but now all of them are being baptized here. Their baptisms were really nice, but we forgot to turn the water off and it spilled into the hall a little.   Happy Birthday Dave!  I remembered last Monday that I forgot to write you, I was pretty mad with myself.  This week we also had Training for New Missionaries.  My companion did a really good job, we learned a lot.  Also the package came!  Already ate the sour patch and one of the jelly beans, with the help of the other elders of course.  Thank you for your letters, and for the nativity, and pics; they are on my desk where I can see them.  My comp is really excited for his two packages, but we will wait until Christmas to open them.  It doesn’t feel like Christmas at all, really hot.  

This week will mark 5 months that I started my mission,  looking back on these months I have had the opportunity to see how God has planned out everything.  It’s been really cool to be able to see how he planned everything with the visa and my training to prepare me for where I am now.  I got to see a little glimpse of what he has planned, and it’s going to be incredible. President Pinho said that when President Monson said to Speed up the work that Satan was holding a general conference of his own, and said the same thing.  President said that in his two and a half years here he has yet to see so much trails and persecution as now.  Satan is really trying to bring us down, because he knows our potential.  We cut a lot of our investigators this week because they weren´t progressing, it has been hard but we know that the Lord will lead us to those who are ready to hear the gospel.

Thanks for the package and the presents, in the next two weeks we should know more about skyping.  Will let ya'll know.  Stay warm!  Love ya'll; say hi to the rest of the family for me!  
Elder Anderson

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Power of Prayer

Monday, December 02, 2013

This week was really good.  We had a mission tour on Thursday with Elder Mazzagardi of the 70 and that was incredible. He said that our mission has one of the highest levels of spirit and righteousness.  The things that he talked about were so amazing; everyone is in shock because of things he said that were so incredible.  We also had stake conference this week which was really good, with Elder Graul of the 70.  This week has just been a week of good motivation and excitement for Christmas.  I totally forgot about Thanksgiving, we did nothing for it, we all forgot what day it was.

Here they cook the pizzas with wood ovens and every time we pass a pizzeria, which there is a lot of, I smell the smoke and it reminds me of the Little Town of Bethlehem.  Yesterday we were walking on the street and there was this motorcycle/spyder that was all dressed up like Santa’s sleigh riding down the road, I wish I had had my camera, it was pretty well done.  Speaking of Christmas, I still don’t know specifics on how it all works, just that we will be using Skype. They should be sending details soon.

Here the kids like to fly kites and they are really good at them.  They all have long tails and the kites have tiny shards of glass in the tails.  What they try to do is cut the string of the other kites. It is really cool to see two kites fighting and then to see one drift away.  The kid that cuts the string yells "HELLO", don’t know why.

This week I started making grilled pb and j sandwiches at home, and toast.  They had them at BYU but I always thought that they were strange and never bought it.  But my last companion taught me and now they are amazing.  Basically you make and pb and j sandwich and put butter on both sides and put it in a pan and grill it.  We don’t have a toaster here so I make toast over a fire, it’s really good.  Try the grilled sandwiches, but put a good amount of jelly for it to get good, and peanut butter too.  They are amazing.!!!

We had the baptism of a young man yesterday, he is really cool.  His uncles were baptized a couple weeks back, and they totally flipped their lives around.  One of them is 22 and was a gang leader, but this Sunday he asked the Bishop how much time he had to wait to serve a mission.  He is amazing.  

Also this week we had a problem in our house.  Our drains weren’t working.  So when we took showers it flooded the kitchen.  But we bought some drain unclogger stuff and it’s working for now.  This week the other American elder were talking a little in English and it was hard.  I kept saying things in portugu√™s without realizing it.  I haven’t spoken English in 3 months!  Can’t wait to see how talking to ya'll on Christmas will be.  I am trying to teach my companion English, but I think that sometimes I am teaching with a pronunciation of portugu√™s and I have to think about words for a while, my companion thinks it’s pretty funny.  We founds a couple new families this week and are really excited for this month, it’s going to be awesome, and hot!

I am learning a lot about the power of prayer.  The other day we wanted to find 8 new investigators, so after lunch we said a prayer asking specifically for 8.  As the day went on we found 7.  It was already 9:30 and we were heading home and we did one last contact and we asked this person what they were searching for in life, they said eternal life!  So we taught them really quick on the street and marked our next visit.  Ended the day with 8 novos.  The other day we wanted to find 3 families, same thing, found them.  When we tell the lord what we want and it’s a righteous desire and we work our hardest to accomplish the goal he is always going to help us.  

Elder Anderson's desk

Have a great week.  Love ya'll!
Elder Anderson
Elder Anderson and his companion