6 MonthsWell, this past week, I officially passed the 6-month mark. I can´t even believe that a third of my mission is over. 6 months ago, I stepped into the MTC with little idea of what awaited me. I still remember the moment they put my nametag on me, and I feel so lucky for these past 6 months I´ve spent wearing my Savior´s name over my heart every day. In these 6 months, I´ve seen the Lord´s hand helping me accomplish things I couldn´t have accomplished alone as I´ve learned how to function in a foreign language and a foreign culture, how to talk to random people on the street every day, and more. I´ve spent 6 months eating rice and beans every day for lunch, taking cold showers, sweating buckets in this crazy heat, getting called "galega" (white girl) more often than "Sister," but more importantly, I´ve spent 6 months studying and bearing testimony of the Book of Mormon and the gospel of Jesus Christ that it contains. 6 months being a representative of my Savior and trying to help others come unto Him. 6 months in this crazy, beautiful country that I adore, among the wonderful Brazilian people I´ve grown to love so much. And despite the rejection and hard moments, I´ve seen clearly what my mission call states: "Greater blessings and more happiness than you have yet experienced await you as you humbly and prayerfully serve the Lord in this labor of love among His children." These 6 months have been one of the greatest blessings in my life, and it´s been amazing to see people change their lives and experience the joy of the gospel. I feel honored to be fulfilling my small role in answering the Savior´s mandate to "go ye into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature." These 6 months have already changed my life and I can´t wait for the next 12. :)
Other than that, this week, we had a really inspiring zone meeting, and one super discouraging day in which no one was home and nothing worked out. The tender mercy of that day was that Pedro´s mom told us that every time she sees him, he has his Book of Mormon in hand and is always trying to get her to read it too. He´s already a missionary and hasn´t even been baptized yet. :)
Then on Thursday, we did a companionship exchange with our sister training leaders, who are part of another zone. I stayed with Sister M. Baker in her area, Potengi, and her companion stayed in Gramoré with Sister Nóbrega until Sunday night. It was so fun, and I adore Sister M. Baker. She´s from California and also went to BYU, so we got to talk all about that, Harry Potter, Jane Austen, all of the crazy things we had to adjust to in Brazil, and more. She speaks Portuguese super well and is an amazing missionary, and I adopted her as a role model because I want to be like her 6 months from now. She is seriously amazing and it was wonderful to be her companion for a few days. :) I attached a picture of us. We also saw lots of miracles in her area and I got to meet lots of great people. One 12-year-old young man is dying to get baptized, but his grandma won´t let him because he´s "bad-behaved," when in reality, he´s a perfect little angel. When we went to his house, he asked "Can we read the Book of Mormon?" and "Can I say the closing prayer?" and was so excited about everything. It was the most charming thing ever and I hope his grandma takes a chill pill so he can get baptized. All in all, it was a wonderful week. :)
I hope everyone has a great week!
Sister Amy Weatherford
I spent a good part of this week in exchanges with Sister Weatherford in my area. Sister J. Silva went to Gramoré and stayed with Sister Weatherford's companion. I missed Sister J. Silva, but I loved working with Sister Weatherford. She has been on the mission for 6 months, but she is already a fabulous missionary (and got a hang of the language super fast!). I was blown away by how willing she was to do contacts, something that was rough for me in the beginning of the mission. We worked hard together and we saw a lot of miracles.I spent a good part of this week in exchanges with Sister Weatherford in my area. Sister J. Silva went to Gramoré and stayed with Sister Weatherford's companion. I missed Sister J. Silva, but I loved working with Sister Weatherford. She has been on the mission for 6 months, but she is already a fabulous missionary (and got a hang of the language super fast!). I was blown away by how willing she was to do contacts, something that was rough for me in the beginning of the mission. We worked hard together and we saw a lot of miracles.
We were walking down the street and there was nobody else on this road. Out of nowhere a woman turned the corner and called us over and asked us to pray for her. We sat down on the curb with her and she started telling us about how she had just left her husband, and that she had nowhere to sleep. All she had was a plastic bag with a denim jacket inside because her ex had thrown all of her things in the street. She sat with us and cried. She said that she had been walking with the idea to end her life, but then we passed by and almost without thinking she had called us over. We talked for a long time. Cried with her. Hugged her. She called us her angels. I don't know if we will ever see her again because she is sleeping in a different house every night and didn't have an address or phone number to give us. We tried to mark with her to meet up this week, I just hope she remembers. But whatever happens, I felt so grateful to truly be a tool in God's hands to protect His daughter. He knew what she was going through and He sent us there to help her, to comfort her. I thought of our baptismal covenant, "to comfort those that stand in need of comfort." It was such a powerful experience to be able to truly live this promise that I made when I was baptized.