Monday, November 2, 2015
"Blessed art the flexible, for they shall not be bent out of shape"
This week was one of the most adventure filled weeks of my mission...
The internet situation here is a little bit tricky and we've been going back and forth between places for the last couple of hours trying to be able to do email... I now have about 15 minutes so I will try my very best to tell you all the wonderful things that happened and all the wonderful wisdom I gained over the course of the week. :)
You know that part in Harry Potter where Dobby tells Harry that history is about to repeat itself? Well, that's kind of what is happening this transfer. :) We're having all kinds of adventures up here.
1. Our tripla is back down to a dupla... sad day. A sister up in Vila Real was sick and had to go home early and because we were the only tripla in the mission, Presidente Amorim did an emergecy transfer and sent Sister Varuçale up to Vila Real to be companions with Sister Weaver (who is basically a reincarnation of Sister Hirschi). It was a rough day when we got that phone call. Sister Larson was on a division in Viseu so Sister Varuçale and I were together... we cried for a few minutes and then we ate some chocolate together... it all worked out. So, after two weeks my native companion got emergency transferred and now because Sister Larson is still a Sister Training Leader I get to stay in Coimbra every week that she goes on a division..... it sounds an awful lot like my first transfer.... apparently there was something Heavenly Father wanted me to learn that I didn't learn, and now He's giving me another shot at it. Hooray!
2. We have lots of blessings that we are pretty sure we haven't earned yet. For example, this week we've had people coming up and talking to us instead of us stopping them and trying to talk to them. That just doesn't happen... but it's happened multiple times this week. The coolest one is this joven named Samuel. He was selling Vodafone in our area and he had put some sort of pamphlet in our door, so he decided to come and ask us what the time was and try to start talking about the Vodafone pamphlet he had left in our door. When we told him that we didn't have cable or internet in our apartment he started asking us questions about who we are and what we're doing.... turns out that Samuel is one of the most elect people I have ever met! He has so many questions and he's super smart! He kept telling us that he wasn't really interested in it, but then he started sending us messages about how it was weird that we really believed in our message because he does't understand how people his own age can feel like that. He walked 20 minutes to come to church and then he stayed for all of it. Actually, Presidente Amorim was there and Presidente Amorim was so happy to see our jovem investigator that he just talked and talked with Samuel and even had him help with some stuff. After church we had a lesson with Samuel and a jovem from our ward named Pedro. It was a really good first lesson. It was more like a conversation and he was able to ask questions and Pedro bore his testemony about how he came to know that the Church is true. It was really good. We finished the lesson and we figured we were just going to leave and go and keep working but then Samuel just kept talking to us and walked with us and started contacting on the street with us. He started by telling us that we had let one person walk passed us without us saying anything so he started pointing out all the people to us and watching us contact them. He kept just enough distance that people wouldn't think he knew us, but he walked and contacted with us for three hours after our lesson with him. It was really weird... but really, really cool. Then at the end he told us that he probably wasn't very interested in still talking to us... but then this morning he sent us a text to tell us all these things he had looked up about Joseph Smith on the internet the night before. Yup... he felt the Spirit, and now he has to know if our message is true or not. :) Mwahaha. When the truth is taught there's something inside that says our message is true.
3. Presidente Amorim came to our ward on Sunday and did this huge training during Sunday School about how the members can be missionaries and how they can make the ward grow. He made them a promise that if they would exercise faith in what he taught and apply it all and work at it that in one year the ward would be double the size and that they would be a new chapel built here in Leiria. Christmas 2016. That is our goal now. The members loved it and afteward we had so many members come and invite us to talk to their friends and neighbors. It's going to be good. The Bishop actually invited us over to his house next Sunday, which is HUGE. Not even kidding. That's HUGE progress.
4. We threw a huge Halloween party for the members and their friends on Saturday. I cut out little bats and had them hanging from the ceiling and the members loved it. Thank you for the idea Mom. It was such a huge hit and we had so much help from the members. The members said it was one of the best activities they've had... and the members here don't give compliments so we're making progress on our member relationships! :)