February 29, 2016 (week 20)

Elder Lawrence & Elder Almeida

Elder Lawrence & Elder Almeida

 

The shirt Seth says he is "saving for the day he returns home"

The shirt Seth says he is “saving for the day he returns home”

This week was awesome!

So one thing about the state I’m in (Ceará) is that they have a thickkkkk accent. My companion said that this is one of the reasons that people have a hard time understanding me all the time. It’s actually kind of funny because they don’t always understand him and he’s Brazillian. But the language is getting better! I can really feel the help of the Lord and I feel like I’ve learned more in these past two weeks training than I did in a month of being trained! Having to talk a lot more has really been a blessing for me, even if it doesn’t always feel like it.

So the grocery store close to us had a sale on waffers…. which at first I thought was awesome because I can get 18 waffers for less than 15 cents, and they are sooo good. But after a week of the sale I kind of hope it’s over haha it cant be healthy for me.

So the person I’d like to tell you guys about this week is Regina. Her story is kind of long so I will leave most of it out. So she really loves the Bible and reads it all the time, but doing this has given her some concerns because of how her church, and others teach, especially about baptism and receiving the Holy Ghost. She is confused why churches don’t baptize the same why that Christ was baptized and why people don’t receive the Holy Ghost, or when they do it’s not in the way that Paul taught (by the laying on of hands). She was able to see a baptizism in the Church of Jesus Christ and she said after that she felt and knows now, that it is the correct way to baptize and that our church is the only church that baptizes the same way that Christ was. BUT she doesn’t want to get baptized because she doesn’t think there could be prophets other than the bible and so she can’t except the prophets of the book of mormon and modern prophets (yet!!). She is reading the Book of Mormon and she really likes it, but doesn’t see it as scripture, so we are trying to help her receive an answer from God, through prayer, that it really is the word of God! I hope in the next few days she will receive this answer.

So I remember to bring my adapter so I’ll attach a picture of my new companion, Elder Almeida!

I hope you guys have a great week!

Elder Lawrence 🙂

 

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February 22, 2016 (week 19)

Hello everyone!

So this past week I got a new companion! I am “training” him, which means that he is brand new and I get to teach how to be a missionary! (which I am definitely still learning). It’s kind of strange, but while serving a mission when you train someone he is your son and so everyone has sort of a family with a father, grandpa, great grandpa etc. I don’t know why missionaries do this but I think its funny and I like it. Anyway, his name is Elder Almeida and he is from Paraná, Brasil which is in the south! He is excited to be here, misses his family I think, and is ready to work! He is definitely prepared and I think in no time he will be teaching better than I do! He probably already does haha because people don’t always understand me.

He talks alottttttttt. Which will be good for me, because it makes me talk more too, and so I will learn more Portuguese! Since I am training him, I have to lead the lessons. This can be pretty intereseting whenever I can’t understand someone. When I don’t understand enough to be sure of what someone said, I usually just guess or say whatever is on my mind, and it usually works out alright!

It’s actually pretty funny, because sometimes my companion doesn’t understand what people are saying either, because of the accent here. There’s been a few times where I understood and he didn’t. I thought “what is this!?” But usually its the other way around.

One bad thing about my filho (son) is that since he’s new he’s seen the new Star Wars. So he’s not allowed to talk about it hahah.

One day we were lost (well actually this is most days) and so I asked if this person knew where the street was. He responded no, but then proceeded to ask literally the whole world where it was. So next thing you know there’s like 30 people in this tiny street/alley all giving me directions and literally everyone is telling me the street is in a different place. This happens at least a few times a week hahaah I just say “ohhhhh thanks so much!” and start walking in any direction.

On the first day with my new companion while I was saying a prayer with him at the end of the day, it was sooo hard to form words. I can’t really describe it, but my mouth was just tired of forming words in portuguese. I wasn’t used to talking so much, and after the prayer I explained that my mouth was tired, and he started laughing and said “I could tell haha”

He’s also trying to learn English and so he asked me to start saying the last prayer of the day in English, so that he can practice listening to English. While yesterday was the first time…. and wow, I forgot how to pray in English. It was weird but I realized that I had started to think in Portuguese because when I would try to say I word it would be in my head as Portuguese. It’s kind of funny because my Portuguese still isn’t good but its weird to realize that I’m thinking differently now! Hopefully this will be good practice for speaking English haha.

Sorry no pictures with my new companion! I forgot my adaptor and so I can’t send any, I will next week!

I know I’m receiving the help of the Lord. My ability to understand Portuguese has literally been night and day from last week to this. Especially while teaching. I know that the Lord helps us with our trials and when he calls us to do something, he will prepare a way for us to do the thing to which we are called!

I hope everyone has an awesome week!

Elder Lawrence 🙂

February 15, 2016 (week 18)

Transfers are this week! Transfers are every six weeks and it’s when you can get moved to another area or get a different companion. I found out that I will be training a missionary! yikes. So, basically, that means that I will be his first companion and more or less show him how to be a missionary. That’s pretty scary for me because I don’t think I really know what I’m doing right now, and I still have a hard time understanding people when they talk. But, from past experience I have a testimony that the Lord doesn’t call who is qualified, he qualifies who he calls. I will definitely need His help! The good news is I’m pretty sure he will be Brazillian so at least he will know what people are saying. If he’s ends up being American.. haha it will be an adventure, thats for sure.

Well that’s all I can really think about right now, but I did right down a few things during the week to say.

This was a few weeks ago, but I forgot to mention it (i think, if i already did then sorry) we saw a motorcycle (made for two people) with 5 people on it. There’s not really much to add, but I laugh every time I think about it hhaha

The person I want to write about this week is Josué. He came up to us in the street and shouted “The Elders!!” So we asked him if he had been taught by elders before and he said “I was an Elder!” But now he doesn’t go to church anymore. He said he knows it’s true but things came up and skipping one Sunday lead to another and he stopped reading his scriptures and now he’s completely inactive. It reminded me of a scripture I read earlier in the week that is in Alma 5 (prophet in the Book of Mormon) is says: “And now behold, I say unto you, my brethren, if ye have experienced a change of heart, and if ye have felt to sing the song of redeeming love, I would ask, can ye feel so now? I don’t now about you guys, but I think this is a powerful scripture. When we stop doing things to strengthen our testimonies and our faith, it begins to wither and eventually die. “Can you feel so now?” is a good question to ask ourselves every once in a while, because often times we seem to forget spirtual experiences that we have and we forget the testimony we once honored. Anyways, it was just a great reminder for me that I need to continue in trying to build my faith in our Lord and Savior. We invited him to come back to church, so hopefully we see him there soon! Although he didnt seem too interested.

I hope you guys had a great week!

Elder Lawrence 🙂