Funny story of the week. So I am zone leader now in zone São Jose dos Pinhais and I have to go on exchanges with all the 3 district leaders and several other companionships in our zone. I caught a bus into the center of the city to work with Elder Stallings from Minnesota. He´s a character. He is one of the funniest missionaries that I have come to know on my mission.
So the story goes like this -- Wednesday was winding down and it was around 8:30 pm and we have only taught 6 lessons in his area and had found 3 or 4 new investigators. We decided to go pretty nuts and talk to everyone. Elder Stallings really really wanted to find a family out of nowhere and so he asked me to pray for a "findable family" (in his words:) ) We prayed and passed by a bar. It was closing up and the last of the few drunks were heading out and tripping over themselves. I walked in to talk to the owner and whispered to Elder Stallings, "você só tem que ser cara de pau, não tenha vergonha, e só faça o que o espirito dirigir" (you just have to be cheeky, do not be shy and just do what the spirit directs.)
The owner was a young guy, about 26 years old. I explained to him that we had prayed to God to show us a family that needed to hear a comforting message of Jesus Christ on this cold night. He seemed kinda skeptical, so I whipped out my "I'm really cold face" and told him I was freezing. He let us in. When we walked into the bar I didn't see any other relatives so in the beginning I thought I had not really followed the spirit. But I was completely wrong. He walked behind the bar stand and opened up the wall. Immediately, I felt like Indiana Jones because he literally slid over a beer cabinet, hit the wall and it opened up to be a secret back door. The secret back door led to an old and creaky steel spiral staircase. We walked up and Elder Stallings looked at me and asked me in English, "how did you do that?" We got up to the second floor where there was a family of seven lounging around watching Spiderman on netflix. It was a perfect entrance. We got them to turn off the tv and sit down around us. We shared our message in an animated way to wake everyone up. By the end of the message they wanted to go to church. :)
Brasilian missionary culture:
1. Walking walking walking. I don't think I'll have stamina problems during brothers gone wild.
2. Buying pizza at least 1 -2 times a week. fatties. The delivery boys are sweet because they fly by on motorcycles.
3. Trying to put random words into your street contacts. Like watermelon, parachute or lizard.
Parabéns mãe mãe. Mom, you scored all lot of mom points for sending Sienna a package while you were traveling New England. She loved it and felt really special and loved. Brownie points and Brasilian desserts come your way when I return home. Woo hoo! Thank you so much for being a cool mom. There are so many missionaries that talk about their parents and then I think about mine and the cool cultural things I did with them. I feel like I was educated beyond mathematics and how to conduct yourself at the dinner table. You both helped me become someone who can be confided in and someone who knows how to love and treat others. The treatment of others is an ethic sometimes lacking in young 18 year-old missionaries. Thank you for helping me understand what is means to be grateful to others and to our Heavenly Father. Once again brownie points.
Love, Elder Forsyth
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