Oh my goodness I loved the pictures. Little Anya with a big smile!
I get to go to the temple every week but I only have 2 more times I can go. No temple in Florianapolis so you will have to go extra for me :( I am going to miss going to the temple, it's such a special place.
They got the letter later than usual this week. I heard you sent chocolate zucchini bread & other goodies to Ben. JEALOUS.
Ma, I'm so sorry about the camera. It was a total accident & I was devestated & I really liked the camera too. You can just send the nice one I have at home or buy another one. Life goes on. I guess.
About the robbery. It was close to the edge of our boundaries-where Sister C. & I & 2 other sisters were the day before- & a man came up & dug a gun into one of the Elder's necks so hard it bled. He took their bags- had everything in it, money, camera, scriptures, notes...& the guy hopped on his buddies motorcycle & rode off. So we aren't allowed to take out bags anymore on P-day.
I'm excited for the map of the geography of the Book of Mormon you're sending me. How was Les Mis? Yes, I'd like a conference Ensign. That story of Anya, kissing and hugging the photo made me tear up. I'm so glad she remembers me.
Tuesday-an excellent day. We did some shopping & laundry but my blue skirt bled all over Sis. Caldwells stuff. Ugh, man. We washed it in cold. She has two white shirts & a white lace skirt. Gah. We worked out for an hour & on our way back to the room we saw Africa. Africa is our favorite Brazillian guy. We'd sit by him at meals & joke with him. He helped us with Portugese & it always made us happy to see him. He's been waiting for his visa to go to Mozambique. His group left & he stayed in the CTM waiting. Another week. Waiting. So on tuesday after his other companion left he told us (on our way back from gym) that they were sending him to the Sao Paulo Interlagos mission until he got his visa. It made us happy for him but very sad. He gave me a note as well as Sister Caldwell. Mine says (it's in Portugese so forgive the rough translation. Ma don't post this!
(sorry erica :))
Sister Verde :)
I'd like to leave this note with you to remember me & also I'd like to thank you for always comforting me & being such an excellent woman. I am certain that you will be an awesome Sistre & you are going to make a big difference in Florianapolis, the people are going to love you! Congrats on your [ability] to learn Portugese. You speak VERY well & don't worry about your accent, it makes you different from all the rest.
Thank you for making me excited & for the pretty hymns. You are Special! (in smaller writing) I shouldn't write this, so the letters are very small. But your husband or boyfriend will be a man of luck :)
Good luck! I will feel your absence.
So sweet. What a kind soul. The last part made me chuckle. Don't worry, he has a girlfriend he loves very much. :) He left & it was very sad. He teared up a little I think.
The next days were really rough. All of our better friends had left. We were pretty lonely.
On thursday, we had an onery substitute who "hates" everyone as Irmao Costa says. He told us our Portugese was terrible & criticized our teaching skills.
Friday We practiced our quartet "Angels we Have Heard on High"- Irmao Costa asked us on tuesday if we'd sing with him. We grabbed a base wednesday. & put together the group. It's a way easy song & sounded pretty good. The good thing that happened was I found out my brother was coming!!!
We were all told to get our cameras & go down to the courtyard for the traditional lighting of the christmas lights. That was fun except the part where my camera broke. Congrats Ash-How was the wedding? Today has been fine. I fasted for charity, or a different personality-either one. Ha. Oh! Sis. C's ex-ish boyfriend (he doesnt know yet) is taking missionary discussions for the 15th time & reading the Book of Mormon. Sis. C. is doubtful he's doing it with the right mindset but we're praying for a miracle!
Also Ma-in my blessing there is a chosen & Chosen. It says there's a difference to being chosen & living up to the challenge of a Chosen One. Why is Chosen capitalized? I know it's a title but I don't know what it means. What's the difference? Could you do that research for me this week? Also, don't worry about me. Can't wait to see Ben!
Well, P-day again. On a bus. I'm so grateful I can go to the temple every week here. We talked to a Brazillian from Rio who drives 7 hours one way just to get to a temple. We have about 6 temples within an hour of us. I hope you all take advantage of that. The Temple is such an amazing thing. Did you watch the Christmas Devotional?
I'm feeling much better this week. A little more confident in my Portugese. One of our old roommates wrote us a letter. Aw. I met some Brazillians going to Floripa. Our 2nd set of roommates left. We sang more for them than for us. They bawled.
One of them doesn't wake up to an alarm so I told her to set it & put it by my head. Either it didn't go off or I didn't hear it cause they had about 6 other girls sent up to get them/help them get ready & finish cleaning. The really barbie one gave Sis. C. a skirt she liked of hers. It's sad thinking I'll be saying goodbye to Sis. C. soon. We proselyte on Monday. My goodness-pray for me.
Okay so I learned that gang activity gets kinda crazy at the end & start of the year. So if you want to pick me up or come back then plan accordingly. I think it'd be nice to come back in July or August. We could see a few more cities. It'd be winter here so it'll be cooler & the gang activity wouldn't be as high. It might be cold at that time in Floripa/Santa Catarina though. You do NOT want to rent a car here. The roads are the most insane thing I've ever seen. There's a waterfall in the Landrina (sp) Mission (more south) that is called Igasu Falls. It's supposed to be like 10 Niagras put side by side. I have Brazillian friends going there so if you want to check that area out I can ask them what there is to do. Anyway. There will be things to do anywhere we go.
I'm certain I will die in this bus. If you're worried about safety at the CTM-don't be. Nothing is getting in or out. Double locked gates at the front with a guard who lets you in & spikes on top of the gate. Spikes on all the walls, accompanied by motion sensors & cameras as well. You were right about every color of skin. These people are beautiful. They treat every color the same. Have I mentioned the graffitti? Most of it looks like the alien symbols on transformers.
Just got out from the temple. Did initiatories again. We'll do a session next week. After I went in the celestial room cause Sis. C. did another sheet. I was alone. I just prayed real hard. Then a temple worker came in & her tummy was going CRAAAZY! So i read my blessing. I've been praying real hard to know if I'm here at the correct time. If I need to go home & come back later. I flipped through D & C & landed on 42. Read it. Great. Kept going backwards. Read 31 again cause I love it. But section 16 is what answered my question. In red in 15 & 16 (section) in red I have marked "For many times you have desired of me to know that which would be of the most worth unto you....the thing which will be of the most worth unto you will be to declare repentance unto this people, that you may bring souls unto me, that you may rest with them in the knowledge of my Father." Wowee. I love the scriptures. What an answer!
Ma: About the "Chosen spirit", "Chosen One" thing. Ask the patriarch. That's what President Degn said. I asked him a very broad version of my question & he said he thinks the patriarch meant something specific-he wanted to get something across. So he said to ask HIM! Brilliant.
You're the best
can't wait to chat
Merry (almost) Christmas
Feliz (quaze) Natal