Poor Sister Maingot was really ill after P-DAY and stayed home with Sister Fortunato on Tuesday. We couldn't find anyone home that afternoon after district meeting (where the lemon bars I made were a big hit!) and had to come home early because Sister Fortunato needed to go to Porto to do residency papers. So I was on Sister Maingot watch for the evening and the next day. Luckily, a Disney colouring book had appeared out of the blue from my parents, so I had something to break the scripture reading, phone calls and area book studying up with!
When Sister Fortunato and Sister Waddell returned they had to go straight to the hospital, because Sister Waddell had massive bites from a mysterious bug. Unfortunately, she's been melting in black tights every day to protect them from the burning sun we have been having. We also woke up to our fridge and freezer not working as the plug socket had stopped working. We tried another one that was also dead, so at the moment we have two extension cables across our kitchen to avoid a repeat of the strong stench of crab. In other missionary disasters in our zone, Elder Fredrickson got bitten by a dog on his ankle and they found both fleas and bed bugs in their apartment. It was a dangerous risk shaking their hands as we traded eucalyptus leaves for salt in the street.
Despite the difficulty getting the time to actually work this week, we have seen some miracles. One was that a member who was resistant to praying about which of her friends would be prepared to receive the gospel surprised us by bearing testimony of the power of this big list we had made and that her prayers had been answered. After church we arranged to have lunch with her friend at her house and had a great lesson. Members are really good teachers sometimes, she was able to make our invites seem a lot more natural. Members - you are a stronger force than you think - go help the missionaries! It was great to have a really honest discussion with her friend, find out her own views of life and discuss our beliefs. Hopefully she will come to family night on Wednesday, which is another great activity the members help to happen.
Maria de Lourdes, our recent convert, is the sweetest lady ever. We had a very welcome biscuit and juice break from the hot sun at her house as we taught a lesson. So we were reteaching the word of wisdom, revelation from the prophet Joseph Smith that we should avoid alcohol, drugs, smoking, tea and coffee. She said that she still drank coffee occasionally and didn't see the problem, because it wasn't an addiction. I had clearly been inspired to be disobedient that morning because for the first time in my mission I had slept in until 7:30 as we didn't need so much time to get ready for church as normal. I had felt guilty about it all day and definitely had less energy for the day. As we spoke about keeping these laws with exact obedience brings blessings of health, knowledge and spiritual treasures, I was able to share this experience. Even though it was only once and I could repent and not have to label myself with it any more, it is still better to keep commandments. She finally agreed to completely give up coffee. Hopefully, I can just remember and save up this experience, rather than repeating any disobedience ;)
We also got to do divisions with the Sister Training Leaders from Viseu Aka, my long lost friends :) It was great to realise how I had got to know Coimbra quicker than Viseu and see different teaching styles again. The structure of a mission is truly inspired to help us learn from each other. Even though our fixed appointments fell through, we were able to teach two people from the Book of Mormon. I am coming to appreciate this book more every day of my mission and I remember more of the stories and clear points of doctrine. During one lesson I was able to completely change the spiritual thought I had planned as I listened to the person we were teaching. I just hope I can keep developing in these ways.