So... This week we taught R the plan of Salvation with our Elders (Hicks, Judd and Fernandes). It was really cool. We had to wait 45 minutes for him to show up, but it was a good lesson of itself. I really understood how what we do in this life is essential for what we want to happen in the eternities.'This life is the time for men to prepare to meet God'. He accepted the baptism invitation again (cue a very big smile from our Greenie Elder Fernandes) just needs to actually turn up to church!
This was a week of many trocas (swaps) between us and the Elders. We traded R for two of their single ladies living in Abraveses (yay - more walking for us! But, a good excuse to pass by our members more) They very kindly took us out to see their houses. Unfortunately, being too near Easter no one was home. Hopefully they shall be pleased to see us this coming week!
Bishop seems very happy with out jovial, sharing nature in Ward Council. They are even giving us names of people to go hunt down! The best moment this week though was when Augustinho offered to help teach one of the Elders investigator families and there was a silence for response. Bishop checked 'what with Natalia?'(Augustinho's wife) and he replied indignantly 'well I don't have any other companion! Red faces all round!
We are teaching this amazing guy R. He had a pass along card for 3 years and then stopped us in the road. When he came to church he felt that there was something different here and told his evangelical pastor that! He had the specific impression to get a Book of Mormon (good thing we are going through a feast period of Books of Mormon in our house rather than the more regular drought!) and will study and highlight it! He also received the impression to 'continue' with this church, so we are hopeful for the future! The Elders are amazing teachers, just great at responding to his questions and then leading it back to the actual lesson (all Portuguese people are blessed with the talent of wandering off the subject when they speak, which is why it is so hard to understand them in the beginning). It is great working together as a district!
We got caught up in a Catholic parade filled with cloaks and candles and brass band music. It kind of reminded me of the weird orange festival they had in the second twilight movie, which made the whole thing a lot more sinister and freaky. We also spotted life size crosses in a yard as we searched for some of our investigators, which gave me a similarly unnerving feeling.
For PDAY we road the little red box funicular (like I always wanted) and walked around the cathedral (nice vaulted ceilings) with the American companion that is impressed with all things old. Just waiting to find out about transfers tomorrow!! Not looking forward to the end of this district!
Church was really special this week. Our Mission President turned up and luckily didn't give us faca (reprimand) for only having 1 investigator between the 9 missionaries in church. He even read out a bit of my weekly letter to him, because it said how great the members were. It was nice to know that he reads them and cares. It was a great opportunity to realise that as with God, if we just believe in him, get to know his real character and feel that we are living in harmony with his rules then we are happy. The mission teaches me so much about my relationship with God.
I am so grateful for this Easter season. I truly know that when we give our burdens to Christ he helps us through them. We still have to struggle through and endure them, but they are easier and we just have to remember that everything in this life is temporary. We can use the atonement when we hope for a better future. We are blessed with the knowledge that everyone will live again after this life and that we can be perfected in the grace of Christ. 'He that believeth in me, though he were dead, yet shall he live'.
I will have to listen to the Lamb of God CDs again... seriously missing my pre-mission orchestra days. Make sure you have found a fitting way to celebrate this season and keep those thoughts throughout the year.
Com muito amor,
Sister Regan xx