HEY HEY HEYYYYYYY FAM! Another week down in GAIA! From everything I´ve heard, this is the promise land of Portugal. Feel free to pray that I don´t get transfered out of here next week. I can tell yall I´ve been praying like CRAZY for it! It´s definitely nice to have things like a ward. And members. And sometimes even baptisms! Like I said, the promise land.
Speaking of baptisms, ANDRE GOT BAPTIZED THIS WEEK!!!!!!! WOHOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!! He´s actually a reference from Sweden but he´s from Brazil and the elders taught him, and he´s literally THE coolest person I´ve ever met. I don´t know what it is, but I absolutely adore just about every Brazilian I´ve ever met. They´re the COOLEST.
Unfortunately the elders know how much I just love André so guess who got to give a talk about o dom do Espírito Santo at his baptism?!?! That´s right, yours truly. Why they would ask the first-transference-still-doesn´t-speak-Portugues-missionary I can´t really say, but let me tell ya, I was roughing it. Right at the beginning André put his head in his hands for a couple minutes.... I´d like to say he was feeling the Spirit, but I´m gonna go ahead and say it probably wasn´t that.
But HE GOT BAPTIZED. AND IT WAS SO GREAT. It´s been a billion years or so since I went to a baptism and it was so powerful, seeing his face after he came out of the water.... GAH. The coolest. This work is the best. And he bore a powerful, powerful, REALLY POWERFUL testimony afterwords, all about how he´s been prepared and how the church is true. Yep, pretty sweet.
But let´s talk about my actual investigators, shall we?! This week was a ROLLERCOASTER. I´ll start with the bad so we can end on a good note: Claudia was marked, preparations were being made... and then she didn´t get baptized. We worked hard on helping her get the desire and she was really getting there, and she reads the BOM everyday and goes to church every week and really fits in with the Moças so it all just makes sense, the only thing that was missing was permission from her parents. So we called in one of her lessons and her mom said no. Just blatantly said no. For no real reason, she´s not even really a part of Claudia´s life (she lives in Lisbon) but she said no and now Claudia´s losing her desire and it´s just SO crazy frustrating. But, we got her and her dad to Andrés baptism and they really really liked it, so we´ll keep working as hard as we can and hopefully we can see her take part in this blessing!
Now we need to talk about Joao!! This kid, I swear. We found him doing street contacts, and we decided to contact him solely because he looks like a pirate (beard, smoking, hoop earrings, the works) and then after a pretty sweet lesson in the rua we left.... And then realized we forgot to get his contact information. Sister Pereira´s not really one to give up, ever, so we ran probably a solid mile to chase him down and get his contact info. Turns out, HE IS SO GOLDEN. He loves the BOM, he goes to church every week, and just soaks in everything we say, always. We thought we´d have trouble with the Palavra de Sabedoria, but after our first lesson HE STOPPED SMOKING. LIKE; ON HIS OWN. WOHOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO. He´s marked for this weekend and we´re CRAZY excited. And best of all, we´ve been using Xeca, one of the less-actives in our ward, in our lessons with him, and in RS she bore her testimony about how helping out Joao has really helped her come back to the church. 2 IN 1 FAM. THIS IS WHAT MISSIONARY WORK IS ALL ABOUT!
Other random thoughts from the week
- there is really an exceptional number of Portuguese men that give us their contact information. Really just a lot. I think it´s great, but for some reason Sister Pereira doesn´t think they´re all that interested in the gospel. Hm.
- THE FOOD HERE. IS SO GOOD. AND I AM GETTING SO FAT. It´s really a problem. Part of me wishes we didn´t have 3 or 4 pastry shops right by our apartment.... and the other part of me gets at least one pastry every single day. Whoops.
- So André is Brazilian, right?! I started off my fabulous baptismo talk by saying "Boa tarde irmaos e irmas, e para André, BOA TARGE!" (cause of their accent, ya know?! Brazilians? No?) and he kind of chuckled and I thought I would die of happiness and then later I told him it took me a good 2-3 days to think up that joke and he was DEFINITELY not impressed. Next time fam. Next time.