Tuesday, June 28, 2011

One month in Itabuna

A note specifically for my dear mother: I am doing fine. The medicine they gave me is a muscle relaxent... not exactly sure how that is helping, but it is. Probably because they think my lack of sleep is due to stress, and if they can relax my body sleep will follow. Its working pretty well. Unfortunately, I have a cold right now, so I am still not 100% I am a little tired of constantly having something in my throat, but I think I am hitting the tail end of it now. I got another newsletter, and three other letters from Nicholas, Emma, and Sister Jensen. I think I got two this past Friday, and I dont remember about the others. I sent off letters today - one for dad for fathers day and one to you guys through missionties.com, so you can see when things arrive. Do me a favor (and him as well) and keep Acenildo in your prayers; he didnt come to conference this week, which means his baptism date needs to be changed, and his wife is not supportive... to put it mildly. But he is ready for this, and we are hoping to get his kids (twin boys, 17) to come to the church activities here.
I love you! Try to relax and enjoy things a little bit, you sound a little frazzeled =] Be thankful for warm showers and that you can hold Megan (seriously, the kids here are so cute, and at times its difficult not to hold them). Tell me the first time you eat something from the garden!

I have a hard time believing that I have already been here one month! And to celebrate, I had my first interview with Presidente Vecchi! That man is wonderful. Our interviews were only supposed to be 8-10 minutes long, but we got to talking (about missionary things, dont worry) and discussing ideas about how to do things and certain problems that we have encountered with the way we are currently doing things... and my interview may or may not have gone on 50 minutes more than it should have. Oops =] It was really nice, though. I learned that I am not crazy, and that I need to try things out more often. Seriously, if you havent read Preach My Gospel, go find a copy and open it up. Any page. It basically will help you learn how to teach anything, not just the gospel.

Everyone here is getting ready for the Festa de Junho; I am not exactly sure what that all entails (Sister Freitas explained, but I didnt catch everything) but I know that there will be a dance at the church, which I think we are going to, and everyone wears plaide(? i have no idea how to spell that word) and a lot of the streets here have banners hanging up now. I will try to take a picture of the streets because it looks pretty neat. But you all should look it up and see what you can find.

One of the things that we are supposed to do each week is meet with less active or new members here, but its been a little difficult because Sister Freitas only know the ones that she has baptised or that she met with her other companions. We finaly took the inicitive to ask for a list of all the members in the ward... we have 41 pages that each have 25 people on them. I am pretty sure we have about 200-250 active members here. We have a lot of work to do. We are also trying to work with the members a little more here, get them involved in the teaching processes. Its been a little difficult to work out our different schedules and have people come with us. But we need to ask more as well. Also, please do me a favor (and this goes for everyone that reads this): the next time someone offers to help you - LET THEM! They want to help - dont deny them that blessing! No one here will let us help them =[ I talked to Presidente Vecchi about this a little, and he said to quit asking - just start helping, because most likely, no one is going to say yes when we ask if we can help. This week was also Stake Conference, and so we were all at the Stake Center and after the meeting I started putting chairs away and the Elders told me to quit because they would do it. I had to convince them that I wanted to help somehow, and this was one of the only things I have been able to do to help.

Another note sobre Conference - the Stake President (escerco o nome dele agora) spoke about missionary work and had one of the young men in the stake open his mission call and read the letter to us. Afterward, he had all of the youth that are preparing their papers or who have received their calls and are getting read to leave come up to the front. There were 12, and the stake already has 17 missionaries out. It was amazing. One interesting thing about the brazilian missionaries - woman still have to be 21, but the young men only have to be 18. They lowered the age here in Brazil (maybe other places, too) because of all the visa problems they have been having and because they need more missionaries. The world needs more missionaries. I wish we had more missionaries here, at times. Its best to meet with investigators every day, but thats impossible here. There are too many and they live too far apart. We have a bairro in our area and it takes almost an hour to walk there, and so we only go once a week. Its really frustrating, because I know that the family we are teaching out there needs us to come by more often - or at least needs somebody to come by more often, but we are just not able to do it. But the Lord prepares a way for everything.

Love you all!
Até mais -

Sister Petersen

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