As I mentioned, transfers were this week, but Sister Coelho and I both remained here in Sousa, which means she´ll be the one to finish up my training. We decided that we´re going to go crazy this transfer (in a good way, of course) and we made some goals, like doing Zumba in the mornings, practicing more English (she´s learning), etc. I personally have the goal of being less embarrassed about the language and just speaking more and doing everything I can to learn Portuguese, which means I´m going to be annoying Sister Coelho with lots of questions :) Lots of people still compliment me, and our investigators Sorato and Ceissa even told me I´m already speaking better than a Brazilian, but lots of people also comment on my accent, and even though they think it´s pretty, I still feel self-conscious sometimes.
I continue to love the food here. Here in the northeast part of Brazil, they have this food called tapioca, which is this white shell thing that you cook on the stove and fill with whatever you want. It´s heavenly filled with sweetened condensed milk, and I decided that the only thing I´m bringing home in my suitcases is tapioca :)
I got to play the piano in church yesterday, which made me really happy. Normally, the piano they have plays the hymns automatically, but I guess it doesn´t have all of the hymns in its repertoire or whatever, so I got to play one. I also got asked to give a talk next week. Speaking Portuguese in front of a bunch of Brazilians? I thought giving a talk in English was hard. Wish me luck. :)
We continued working with Sebastião this week. He is wonderful and always reads the Book of Mormon passages we leave with him, but he´s pretty discouraged about his smoking addiction and really doesn´t believe that he can quit. We met a woman named Cilene who is absolutely wonderful and kept telling us that God sent us to her to help her. We met lots of other new people and continued working with many investigators this week. I wish I could tell you about each and every one of them, but this email would be even more ridiculously long. There´s always so much work to be done, it amazes me.
This week, I had a pretty amazing experience. There was one night that we had a lesson with Sebastião followed by a lesson with Sorato and Ceissa. For some reason, all 3 of them chose that day to open up about all of their problems and hardships. I´m sure I didn´t understand the half of it and I was still overwhelmed. When we went home, I was thinking "I´m 19 years old. I´ve lived an easy life. I can´t help these people. What am I doing here?" and I felt God reminding me that I can´t help these people, but He can. During Sorato´s prayer with us, he asked for rain for the second time (I mentioned the first time in an email a couple of weeks ago). I remember noticing that there weren´t any clouds in the sky, yet a few minutes after we got home, it started to rain. I have no doubt that that rain was from God, not only to show Sorato that He answers prayers, but also to show Sister Coelho and I that He truly is with us and that this is His work, not ours. It was so comforting and I´ve never felt more certain that God is with me and that He hears and knows us.
I hope you´re all doing well! Sending my love from Sousa!
Sister Amy Weatherford :)
One of the pictures is of a few elders in our district randomly posing (no, we didn´t ask them to) with their Books of Mormon, and one is of a bunch of cows being herded by an almost naked child, which is pretty much a normal sight here in Sousa.The rest of the pictures don´t really need an explanation.