Monday, May 5, 2014

Clapping Skills and Teaching Diego

Hello everyone!

The fourth was with me this May, but it was my last Sunday in the Estação Ward. President loves throwing me around to help out and learn from the other missionaries in our mission. I have had so many companions since the MTC. I think 13...14 including my new companion Elder A. Santos. He´s from Brasilia and worked as a band maintenance guy. He hooked up all the pick-ups and guitars and configured the sound board. He is a big music guy, too. I already love his style, he is super kind and loves to talk. I like talking companions, it makes the work seem easier and a little more comfortable because you can talk about any idea that's flying through your head. From the Savior´s atoning sacrifice to Spider-man to the sore feet. I was a little sad with the other transfer because the Lord had blessed us so much in that little part of his garden and I had to leave it all behind and start another adventure here in VILA ACORDES. 

Elder A. Santos and I are both new in the area. That means we are going to clap a lot. Everyone knows that they clap here instead of knocking doors, right? I feel bad if I haven't explained this custom from Brasil. If there is one thing that I have mastered on the mission, it's the effective clapping. Sometimes the gates in front of the houses are really far away from the front door and you have to clap a certain way so that it doesn't hurt but it travels as if it were going through a valley. Kind of like a big echo. 

Diego. Certified Vigilante, or as they say here, Vigilante Certificado. To sum it all up he´ll be be on the security team squad when the World Cup games hit Curitiba. He is super pumped and got the job because he scored a 100% on all his exams. A Champion. 

Diego is an investigator that I have been teaching since I arrived in Estação. He was contacted by the missionaries 8 years ago and then again a couple of months before I got there. We saw him in our area book in the potential investigators section. He didn't have a teaching record but there was a little description that said, "liked the 1st visit, go and follow up". Yeah, well, when I went to his house he had just finished parking his motorcycle and was heading inside. He saw us, grabbed some pamphlets that the previous missionaries had give him and started asking us about modern prophets, but he was trying to tear down the doctrine. We went into a little New Testament/Bible bash and in the end he told us that he didn't believe in God. I realized he was pretty depressed and was into anything that related to God or religion. He really just wanted nothing with nothing (Ele queria nada com nada----many Brasilians say this). We invited him to find refuge in the Church of Jesus Christ and he cussed us off. Secretly I knew he felt the spirit with our simple and loving invite because when he was walking away he gave us a little look over his shoulder and kept looking for a couple of seconds.  I felt confident about our invite. 

That same week his girlfriend's brother crashed his motorcycle on the highway and unfortunately lost his life. He was also a member´s grandson, so the ward held the viewing that same week. Diego showed up right after our exit. We had left some Plan of Salvation pamphlets, Liahona magazines, and Book of Mormons. He felt a calm spirit from the members that were hosting the lamenting family members. He brought all of the materials home and began studying them. The next Sunday he showed up in Elder's Quorum and told us that he felt like he needed to be at church. After the viewing, he had wondered why our Father in Heaven lets us suffer. Well, he found his answer when he followed the invite in the end of the Book of Mormon. He found Moroni´s promise and asked his Heavenly Father with a sincere heart. According to Diego the flying sensation he received was all he needed. After his first visit he invited us over and ever since then he has been a devoted investigator that is doing everything in his power to resolve his life so that he can be baptized. Last night we read Alma 26 with him and he looked at us, crying a little bit, and said that if he went on a mission he would save many souls. Last night when I told him I was going to be trasferred, he said that if we didn't meet up after the mission we would meet up in the spirit world to give each other hugs and talk about our conversion stories together. He has already gone on home teaching visits. I feel extremely privileged to be the missionary that started to teach him. 

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  1. What a great story! It's those special moments on missions that will leave a lasting imprint on his heart. So happy for Ian!

  2. AND we get to talk to our kids THIS SUNDAY, Beth! I am just a little tiny bit excited. You too?