Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Dog Bite

 (Not sure whose glasses Dallin has on...he doesn't wear glasses!)
August 26, 2013 
Alright peops. This week has been another fast one without a baptism. It happens but we keep on with the keeping on. 
Monday we went to this city called Alto da Mora. It's this city where all the clay dolls in Recife come from. They send all these clay dolls to all of the tourist attractions in Pernambuco. It was cool to see how they made them. We went to this museum called the House of the Master. Apparently where everything started with this clay doll craze. It was a hut and I wasn't that impressed, but all the other people seemed excited so I just went with it. haha. We got back home and had an FHE (Family Home Evening)  at the Bishop's house. Of course there was cake there.
Tuesday we went to district meeting like we always do. I was assigned to talk about our relationship with members and how we can milk the references out of them at our lunch appointments. These past few weeks at lunch, Me and Elder Doyel have been singing "Families can be together forever". So I sang it to my district and asked everyone what they thought during the hymn. Of course everyone said they thought about their families and as missionaries they thought about the people who don't have the temple blessings. YET. This hymn gets everyone. The members always think really hard after we sing because they know about the blessings that come from the gospel and it helps them to want to share these blessings with others. Sometimes they even cry! That's when you know you've got em. 
Some weird/funny things that happened this week:
Well I got bit by a dog. I thought it would never happen because they always just bark in the road and we walk by tranquilo. Leading up to... the accident, I had a feeling that something was going to happen.  It was just that feeling. I can't describe it. All I can say is that it was the Holy Ghost. So we turned the corner and there was this dog in front of it's house without a rope just barking up a storm. Super normal believe it or not. But in my mind I was like, "Dang it, this is the thing that was gonna happen. Dang it... I'm gonna get bit... Ope... Yup... He bit me..."  I wasn't even surprised when it happened. I was just kind of mad that I didn't kick it as hard as I could. The dog ripped my pants a bit but it's teeth didn't dig in or anything. It was just stupid and I didn't have chance to kick it because it came from behind and ran a way right after. We were with Caio when it happened and we just laughed about it afterwards. I reeeeaaallllyy wanted to kick it on the way back but I didn't get the chance. Now all the members know and always say "Look out for the dogs in the road!"....yeah.
So the sisters in our zone had something weird happen to them this week. That super crazy guy that they baptized totally snapped. They woke up one morning and heard a sound at they're front door. They went to go check it out and they found a bunch of posters and letters from Isaias... the crazy guy. All over these things he wrote that he sinned and that he would never be able to see the sisters again and that he wanted them to live with him. The sisters were just super freaked out so Doyel went there with José to go check it out. President was super mad and said something like,  "If this individual doesn't get his act straight were gonna throw him in jail." This morning Isais did the same thing but it was better this time. He wrote that he wanted to change and repent again. This. Guy. Is. Crazy.
The other day we were walking back from doing an interview and this dude stopped us in the street. From a long ways away he looked like he had a balled spot on the top of his head but when we got closer we realized that it wasn't. It was this weird egg-shaped growth popping out of his hair. It was sooooo distracting. I couldn't talk to him without looking at it. But this dude asked us about our missions and we start getting into doctrine stuff and the difference between each church. I lost patience with him because he was just talking about stuff that really doesn't make sense so I stopped talking. But Doyel doesn't know when to stop. We were late for a lunch and we were sitting there talking about nothing! I shook his hand and said pleased to meet you and we left. The dude said he was baptized but was kicked out because of some drama between him and the Bishop. We later found out from the sisters that he threatened to kill the Bishop. 
Wellinton and Gleici.
This is a married couple we've been teaching for the past couple weeks. We met Wellinton in the road on Father's day. He was playing soccer with his son and we thought that was cool so we talked to him and got his address. The first time we taught them it was just Wellinton. He doesn't know how to read but his wife does so we were hoping that he would give the Book Of Mormon to her for them to read together. The next time we went back, we met Gleice and they had read the BOM and liked it! It was pretty exciting. They are really good people and are ready for the gospel. We gave them the Restoration DVD and went back just to say hi and they had watched it. They're loving everything and are progressing like bosses.
This is Caio´s grandma. She lives with their drunk uncle and just is a nice old lady who likes to drink coffee. Every other word she uses is God and Jesus, so I'm pretty sure she believes in god. But I think she has problems hearing because she always acts like she's listening but she's not. But she's progressing and we set a date for her to be baptized. We talked about coffee and she got all riled up. "Coffee is a plant from God!!!"  Yeah so is weed, but you don't see us smoking it..... We'll talk about coffee later with her. 

Junior and Gleice.
So we got this reference from the other ward because a family that lives in our ward went to that ward. Score. We were told by this member from the other ward not to mention the word "baptism" to this guy. I was a bit worried as to how the family would be... If the dad would be one of those dudes from the Assembly of God who would want to argue every single point that we would bring up.  But it was the exact opposite. We got there and instantly we were joking around. The guy is HUGE. Apparently he's been looking for a church for a while and is looking to improve his life and set an example for his daughter. We taught the first lesson and the Spirit was felt very strongly. Gleice cried and was holding her daughter´s hand during the first vision and then I started choking up while I was teaching about it. The family loved the message and we'll be back there this week to baptize the heck out of them! It was probably the best lesson I've taught so far. My Portuguese is becoming flawless in lessons and I've really learned to teach so that people understand and pay attention.

Kids in the street playing soccer.

The other night we were on the bus and this kid comes and sits by us and asks us what ward we're serving in. So we knew he was a member. So we got to talking and I find out that he really lives in Paraiba and knows Brandon! It was sweet. So we took a pick with him.

Well I think I just about wrote about everything that happened this week. This Gospel is the truth! No matter what anyone says about it, the Gospel will never cease to be true, and Jesus Christ will never stop being our Savior. Love you all! Have a good week!!

Elder Dallin Stephen Carroll
These cute little girls were selling bottle caps...Dallin bought some and got their Mother's address so he could teach her.
Blurry picture but, this is one of the guys that knows Brandon (Dallin's new brother-in-law who served his mission in Brazil.)

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Nine Months

 August 19, 2013

Eai chegado!!
This week flew by. Lots of cool stuff to talk about, so I hope I can get it all in here.
So for Pday we went to that huge hill that ya'll know about and at the end of the day we taught the cousins of Edson. He's a dude in the ward. These cousins are all dudes from the age of 20 to 30 and they all live in the same house. There are like 5 of them. They all do manual labor the whole day so when they come home they're super dead. But they were cool. They took the first lesson well and the Spirit was really felt. It's funny because they don't have any furniture so we sat on a couple chairs they had and they sat on the ground. It was a little story time. 
Tuesday was pretty sweet. Here we teach pretty much all of our lessons with members. There are these young men, Caio and Quecio, brothers, who always go out with us. It's good to have that extra testimony to help out. Then there's Erasmo. He's the recent reactivated guy who served in Rio. He was AP there so he knows his stuff and he's really good to teach with. We taught this dude named Wellington. On Father's day(it's different here) he was playing soccer in the street with his 4 year old son and we took a pic with them and made a contact at the same time, just walking by. But he really felt the lesson. He doesn't know how to read but he was super engaged and really liked the idea that Christ's true church is on the earth today. He'll get his wife to read for him when she's home. During the lesson his son was all over the place messing with this chick they had in the house. Super distracting but we just go with the flow here.
We've also been teaching Andrea and her two sisters. They sew jeans at home like half the population in Caruaru(not an exaggeration) so we had to interrupt them from their work.  They loved the first lesson but when we went back to check on their reading/praying they said they wanted to stay in the catholic church. NOOOO. We decided we should explain the Book of Mormon because they didn't read it and they got a good idea of what it's all about. We'll go back this week. Caio was with us and said that he knew her son so we'll baptize him and her at the same time.
Wednesday we went to the other chapel to have our zone meeting with President. It was cool. Those meetings are always pretty motivating and you get some different teaching techniques to mix up your lessons a bit. Our area is super far from the office so when the President comes he brings our mail because the Zone Leaders aren't able to go every week like the closer areas. I didn't have anything. It was disappointing but it's cool I guess. We were taught not to use the word, "resposta" in our lessons to describe what the Holy Ghost is like.  It means answer, in English.  The people will expect a miracle when you say that so we're toning it down a bit and really explaining how the spirit works. Not that we haven't done that before, but this way we'll be able to tell them that they already received their answer during the lesson and should prepare to be baptized now. There's no way to deny the spirit in a lesson. It's kind of impossible unless you're Bible bashing. We're told not to do that. 
Thursday we just taught all day. We taught these kids who were playing Mario right before we got there. You know how kids get when you turn off their video games...(Landon and Easton) so we decided to make the lesson apply to Mario. We taught the gospel of Jesus Christ. Faith was the start. Repentance was when you go in the wrong tube, hitting a bad guy and having to get back on track, finding a mushroom. Baptism was a tube to another, better world with an extra life. The gift of the Holy Ghost was the star that makes you invisible. Endure to the end was the stairs that take you to the flag at the end of the level. Good thing I played a lot of Mario because these kids just ate it up. 
Alright, I'm done writing about days because I don't remember what happened chronologically. I'm still teaching this English class every week and we usually do a division every day that week so I'm the only American in the room.  It's pretty sweet. It's hard to teach a different language and switch from language to language but we make friends that aren't members and that's what it's all about. I've noticed that sometimes I don't realize that my companion is switching from English to Portuguese.  It kind of all just registers in my mind the same way. Kinda cool. We had a non member, Tatiane, go to the class. She's 20 and she hadn't gone to church yet but she's been to 3 Family Home Evenings these past 2 weeks and she's already made a lot of friends. She's living with her Aunt because she's studying/working here in Caruaru. At the beginning of the class it was just me and Elder José teaching her. She started asking questions about the mission. Then she asked the best question ever, "What do I need to do to be baptized?" uhhhhh... It was sweet!  Before she was super mole and said that she would never leave the Catholic church but she said there's something different about this religion...(the difference being that it's the true church of Jesus Christ...) But we talked about it and she asked what happens if she goes to church on Sunday and likes it so much that she wants to be baptized right then. Well then you can freaking get baptized!!!! haha. It was sweet. 
So after that we went to bed, woke up and got a call from Erasmo. He said he was assaulted in the city and that he wanted us to visit him. We went there later that night and found out everything that happened. It was pretty intense how he told the story. There were 2 guys that tried to rob him and were beating him up in the road and right then the police passed by and beat up on the crooks. He said it was from God because the police don't just pass by there at 5 o'clock in the morning. He said he was feeling the impression that he was gonna get jumped the whole week. He knew it was the Holy Ghost warning him the whole week after the incident. He went to the place today to make the crooks' situation worse, because apparently here, if you don't do anything as the person who was assaulted, the guys will get out of jail faster. We gave him a blessing of comfort and health because he was pretty traumatized after.
Sunday was sweet. We had some good people in the church including Tatiane. When you have an investigator in the church you have to kind of help them out to help them receive a good first impression. There was a returning missionary speaking in Sacrament meeting so that really set the tone for everyone. It made me think of all the experiences I'll be able to share when I get back. Even though I'm not even half way done with my mission! (I have nine months/I'm pregnant).  We taught the gospel principles class about tithing because the teacher wasn't there. It went well and afterwards we went to check on Tatiane. She really liked it, but she didn't understand everything. We pulled her aside to one of the classrooms and taught her the first lesson and asked her if she wanted to be baptized. She said, "yes."  I got super excited. There really are people out there who are ready to receive the restored gospel. You just gotta find them!  After lunch we went over to her Aunt's house to teach her everything before her baptism(that night). She was squeaky clean for the interview and was just super ready. It was the biggest miracle baptism ever. Practically fell into our hands. All we had to do was teach her. Everyone likes her so that makes it easy for her to stay active in the church.
There was a decent amount of people there to support and have a real baptism with messages and everything. It was the fastest baptism that has ever happened on my mission. We had to call the President to authorize it because usually you have to go to church twice to be baptized but she was super elect and ready so he authorized it. It was great.
Well I'm out of time. Hope everything is good with the fam. From what I know, Landon suffered the wisdom teeth ordeal, Ashton is prepping to be a real life teacher, Easton is starting guitar, and life's just grand. I love you all and pray for you every day! Thanks for the prayers on ya'lls end. It really helps out. The church is true and everyone needs to know it!
Elder Dallin Stephen Carroll
(Dallin's mom copied some photos from a facebook friend in Brazil...Thanks!!!)

Monday, August 12, 2013


Dallin wrote about eating something called coxinha in his last letter.  After doing some research this is what it's all about...

The Coxinha (Portuguese: [koˈʃĩɲɐ], little chicken thigh) is a popular food in many countries in South America. The drumstick is a snack Brazilian originally from São Paulo, but also common in Portugal, and based on dough made with wheat flour and chicken broth, which is filled with spiced chicken meat. The filling consists of chicken, and tomato sauce, onion, parsley and scallions (and occasional catupiry cheese), that is coated in wheat flour – variants including potato or manioc are also commonly sold – batter, and deep fried. It is shaped to roughly resemble a chicken leg.

Time is Flying

August 12, 2013


So this week went by way too fast. I don't even remember what happened really. I'll have nine months on the mission in three days so that's weird to think about. Time is flying and I don't want to take it for granted. The mission is really interesting. You learn things without even knowing that you're learning! We don't really have that much time to study but my knowledge has definitely tripled since I got here. I find myself having conversations in Portuguese with ease now. It's actually harder to have a conversation in English!  My companion is cool. He likes to know the deep doctrine principles and he likes to share what he knows too. He also doesn't lose his excitement. He just doesn't. I find myself dying to go home at the end of the day without the disposition to talk to anyone. But he just keeps going! I'm learning a lot from him. My previous companions have seemed to put limits on what you can do to get new investigators, or how outgoing you can be, but this guy just goes for it. I feel like I'm being trained again sometimes because I'm learning a new way of doing things. So this is good. 

So we've been teaching this dude named João. The elders before us made a contact with him. They saw that his motorcycle was in the front room of his house where he would have to drag the thing up a flight of stairs to get it there. They thought it was funny and knocked on the door to figure out how he got it up there. Turned out to be a 23/4 year old kid who's studying a bunch of English cause he wants to go to the US. Everyone here wants to go there. It's literally a dream that these people have. We're lucky to live there. So naturally he's excited to have an American show up at his door and speak English with him so he's all felizão (happy). He's super legit and believes everything we say but he hasn't read the BOM (Book of Mormon) so he's not progressing.   Elder Doyel is all gung ho about him so we won't boot him yet. 
One day we went to the Bishop's house to get a reference from him. The reference wasn't home so we just visited with the Bishop for a bit. He's a real happy guy who likes to joke around. I was tired so while we were talking I fell asleep sitting on his couch. He woke me up and said really fast "Did you know that you're going to speak in church on Sunday??"  I didn't understand him because my brain was in English mode after I woke up real fast. He had to repeat real slowly for me to understand haha. This was on a Thursday. I thought he was joking but he wasn't. Talk about a rude wake up call. 
Sunday I gave the talk that took me like 30 minutes to prepare. I thought it was way good and the faces of the congregation seemed to be pretty engaged. At first I was worried that I was going to mess up because I had never given a full blown talk in Portuguese before but it was really smooth. In fact, one of the councilors wrote on a piece of paper,  "time is up elder!" I took up like 15 minutes and my talk wasn't even done yet! Bishop didn't even tell me how long I would have to take so I took my sweet time. So I hurried up and closed it up haha. Turns out I should've used 5 minutes only. I spoke about missionary work of course and how it's not only the missionaries duty to spread the gospel, but the duty of all the members too! I talked about how Jesus got tired but never gave up. What Christ did to save us wasn't easy so why would it be easy for us to do missionary work. Salvation was never easy. Talked about what happened when we baptized Davi(reference of member). It was good. As far as I know I didn't mess up. Oh and we also confirmed Saulo. Soul, secured. This lady that we're teaching, Aparecida came to church with her family. I don't know her that well because I've only taught her once but she's ready to be baptized and so is her grandson. She's like 70 years old and always has some type of problem on Sunday. Not just excuses, but problems. So we'll see what we can do to get her to church next Sunday. 
Since my companion is the DL we have to do interviews for the other missionaries' baptisms. So Sunday we went to this area way far from our area. We took a bus and then we hitch hiked to the church in Gravatá. The Sisters were baptizing this supposedly crazy guy. In my mind I was thinking we'll see how crazy this guy really is kind of not believing that anyone could be as crazy as the people I taught in Águas compridas. Welp. This dude took the cake. He was super duper crazy. But not too crazy to be baptized. He kept saying that he was scared of me and Doyel and asking why God let's bad things happen to good people. We told him about Alma 14. It was really hard to keep his train of thought straight. He kept asking if he was going to go to hell if he sinned after his baptism. No. That's why we have the sacrament. He was super crazy/frustrated. It was a process to get this guy into his baptism clothes because he was somewhat attached to the sisters who had been teaching him. It was just a little strange but we got through it. His interview was fine, but it took a bit. He just kept saying that he's weak and that there will be temptations and he will eventually sin after his baptism. We assured him that we are all sinners. Eventually we baptized him, gave him hugs and left. WOW. It was intense but he's sinless now. We took a 2 hour charter bus on the way home and pronto. 
So today is pday and we started the day with a hike up this huge hill called Bom Jesus which has a great view of the city. We didn't even eat before so I grabbed a coxinha in the street(fried tear-drop-shaped ball of chicken and cheese). I'll send a pic or two. My legs were super tired after. You would think I was out of shape or something. Oh well. Missionaries gotta pay their dues. 
Well that's all folks. Hope you enjoyed it. I love you family! Miss you a lot. Christ lives!
Elder Dallin Stephen Carroll

Monday, August 5, 2013

Digging In

August 5, 2013

Hello family!
So a lot has happened this week that was cool so I'll try to give a good recap.
Monday was transfers and pday at the same time. The transfer took forever and afterwards we had to catch the train, a charter bus, and a city bus to get here. Needless to say I slept on the 1.5 hour bus ride. We drove through a lot of green areas/the middle of nowhere. It was cool but I was asleep. Turns out we spend more money here on transportation than my other area. My area really consists of like 3 areas so we have to get the bus all the time. But we buy these coupon things so it's cheaper. The weather is definitely cooler here. I had to buy a blanket to sleep with because I never used/needed one in águas. You kind of just wake up in the morning freezing here. My companion gave me a sweater and I use socks all the time. The roads here are set up like a grid so it's easy to find your way around but at the same time it's hard to find investigator's houses. The Bishop is super legit and is getting everyone to go on divisions with us. He likes to talk about his mission and his American companions and the things that their moms would always send them. Everyone here who has ever served a mission always mentions peanut butter. Its super rare here and it's a delicacy. If ya'll sent me some it would make my week. We had a fhe that night at Erasmos' house. He's this guy who was an AP on his mission in Rio but was inactive for a long time. He had some rough problems but the missionaries reactivated him. He read the BOM in a week and is super excited about the gospel now. He goes out to teach with us almost ever day which really helps because he's a good teacher. 
Tuesday we went on division with the ZLs. They live in our house so it's easy to do. I went with Elder Vargas. He's from Rio Grande do sol and he's super small. But he's way confident and I like his teaching style. It's always good to learn different ways to teach to keep it interesting. We knocked a ton of doors that day with a lot of success. The interesting thing about that day was that the other American missionary who already left, Elder Something, marked a visit with this English teacher. He marked for him to go and talk with this class of fifty teen-agers about why learning another language is important, and he said at the end we could talk about the church. So we got to this high school at night and the teacher was waiting there for us. Off the bat he started speaking in English and I could barely understand what he was saying because his accent was so thick. So he was speaking in English to me and I was speaking in Portuguese to him. I think he was really excited to use his English on an American. We got in the class and the room was full of rowdy teenagers who really just wouldn't be quiet. Me and Vargas were at the front of the room waiting as the teacher introduced us. Then it was my turn. Everyone was super quiet to hear what I had to say. There were even a few kids with their cellphones out filming me. It was kind of weird but I think I handled it pretty well. There were kids in the hall saying something like "oh there's a German guy in there"... I assured them that I was Americano and everyone laughed. I started talking about how my dad uses Spanish to sell security. I said he has more references than a lot of other people in the company because he uses his Spanish to sell to people that nobody else can sell to. Then I talked about the process which I passed through to learn how to speak Portuguese. Everyone was in awe when I said I've only been speaking Portuguese for 8 months. It was way cool. Then the teacher did this thing where the kids would ask questions to me, he would translate the questions into English(even though I already understood the question perfectly in Portuguese) and then I would respond in English... sometimes. This teacher just really wanted to use his English ha ha. It was legit though. At the end we explained who we were and why we're here and what the church is all about. Eventually me and Vargas just went to teach little groups sporadically in the room. I think I taught the 1st lesson like 5 times. It was legit. The students had weird questions like, "how do you like our health system" or, "what do you think of Brazilian girls?", or  "do you listen to worldly music?".... It was kind of funny. Some of them would talk with their hands to get me to understand what they were saying. uhh... I'm understanding you perfectly.... you don't have to do that. When it all ended the principal gave us a ride home. I asked him for one of the shirts all the Brazilian kids wear to school and he gave it to me willingly. Sweet. 
Wednesday was cool. It was District meeting so I got to meet all the missionaries in my district. Turns out there are 8 Sisters and 4 Elders. It's a bit different, but it's cool. The sisters are way cool and a lot of them work harder than the majority of the elders in the field. Elder Doyel, my companion, is the district leader, so when he finishes here I'll be the district leader.  It's gonna be different to work with so many sisters but it'll be fun. We have to watch out that we don't hurt any feelings because they don't put up with the same stuff that elders do. One of the Sisters was sick and needed a blessing. I did the blessing in English because she's only been out here for 6 weeks and I thought it would be better for her to understand. It was really, really hard. I felt like I was learning to speak English, instead of the other way around. It was just awkward. 
Thursday...... It was rough. Before I got here the Elders were teaching this dude Saulo. He's married to this recent convert, Claudia, and was marked to be baptised for this Sunday. Doyel told me that Her daughter tried to take her own life by overdosing the week before and had been in the hospital for a week straight. So we had to do things to make sure that Saulo would maintain his desire to be baptized. Thursday morning she died in the hospital. We went to Saulo's house to do something to comfort them. We talked about the Plan of Salvation and just eternal families in general. It seemed to help a little bit but there was really nothing we could say to make it alright. I felt really out of place because I had never met these people before, so I just said what was appropriate at the appropriate times and followed Doyel's lead. The next day the funeral happened. It was the first time I'd ever been to one and I felt pretty uncomfortable. But it made me think about the body and the soul, and really how fragile this life is. It made me think about the word procrastination and all the connotations that come with it. We only have one life and we need to use it wisely. Repent as soon as possible, tell someone you love that you love them, just try to be like Christ in general. He gave us this life to prove ourselves and we don't get a retake. I learned something pretty cool this week. It's human nature to stay in our comfort zone no matter what happens. So that means that if you're a genuinely good person, it's going to be really hard for you to sin, but if you're a terrible person you will struggle trying to turn a new leaf rapidly. When Christ was tempted by the devil, he was impeccable but sinning really wasn't in his comfort zone so he didn't give in just to stay the way he was. To take the easy way out. A lot of times, our easy way out is sinning because that's our nature, but he was so perfect that his easy way out was staying perfect. It's pretty cool. That's what we're striving to do in this life. Maintain a healthy comfort zone so that it will be hard for us to sin, and we really won't have the desire to do so. It helped me to understand my investigators more. You kind of have to break them like wild horses and get them in to that healthy comfort zone. Alright, I'm just rambling now so I'll move on.
Friday we met a lot of new people and taught a lot of lessons with Erasmo. My companion is a good teacher and I'm learning a lot from him. The only problem is that he talks the majority of the time, giving me less time to say what I need to say. We'll work it out. We went on another division with the Zls because I needed to teach an English class in the church, but Doyel needed to stay in the area to talk with Saulo. Teaching English was weird. Although I know everything, it's hard to explain the transitions from Portuguese to English to someone who speaks Portuguese. One of our investigators, João was there. He knows a lot of English already, and was really excited to learn. He's always talking about how the US is awesome. I hate to agree while I'm in a different country, but I agree. 
Saturday was a blur because we taught so much. 
Sunday I met everyone. It's really hard to remember every one's names when you meet like 200 people in the same week. But it was good. The ward is legit and we had a baptism after church. Saulo stayed strong during the week and pulled through to get baptized. It was great and everyone welcomed him with open arms. He asked one of the zone leaders to baptize him, Elder José. He's from Paraguay and learned Portuguese here on the mission. There aren't that many Spanish speaking missionaries here so that's why Saulo wanted him to baptize him.
Well I'll close this thing up. All in all this week was cool. I feel like I'm being trained again. The only difference is, I know how to teach and I know how to talk. Love you family! Till next week!
Elder Dallin Stephen Carroll

Sunday, August 4, 2013


July 29, 2013

So guess what everyone.... I was finally transferred. It's kind of a bitter sweet thing because I made a ton of friends in Águas Compridas that I had to say goodbye to but it was reaching that point where I was getting too comfortable and needed a change. I won't say I needed a challenge because everywhere we go there will be challenges, but just walking the same streets everyday in a place that's not your home takes its toll. I will definitely miss the friends I made there though. The members are sweet and help the missionaries out when they can. Last night when the Zone Leaders called they told Elder Amaral to bring clothes to sleep somewhere else for the transfer. This usually means that you're going to train but nobody said anything about him training. So I told Amaral to accept the possibility that he would train. He wouldn't accept it. He didn't feel prepared and kept being nervous about it. I told him not to worry about it and that nobody is really ever ready to train. So we went to the transfer and everyone received their new companions. I got Elder Doyel. He's American and has 2 months left. What do you know, I'm sending another one home. I'm used to it, haha. It's good though because the older ones always have tricks and knowledge up their sleeves for me to just soak up. So after I got my companion, Elder C. Alves called Amaral's name and told him that he would train. His face didn't show that he was ready or even wanted to train. He's not very good at hiding his emotions. Something the members always bugged him about. But he's ready. Presidente talked with him after to reassure him that he can do things that he doesn't think he can do. I left him with a teaching group of 22 people with decent potential, so well see what he does with it! He'll be fine. He'll get an American that doesn't speak a lick of Portuguese and the Lord will bless them with tons of baptisms.

So I'm just gonna write about investigators cause I can't remember jack-squat in chronological order.

So we got Valkiria back. She's this kid from the ward's mom. She started running away from us cause I think I challenged her too quick to be baptized. She wanted to but then she changed her mind. She told her son she wasn't ready and that she wanted to get to know the church more before she did anything. Fair enough. So we went back and started a new investigator/missionary relationship. Without commitment the other guys are gonna teach her little by little to help get her there.

That family we found when we just randomly knocked on their door is way cool. But they aren't going to church yet. We took Painho and Mainha over there to teach the plan of salvation but they flaked out. We marked the time with them and everything. At least the wife was there. Painho and mainha talked with her for a bit and they clicked pretty well. So she already has friends at church. She was about to leave the house and the husband was out drinking. It'll be a bit of a challenge for the other elders but they'll get them in the water.

This iracema that we found from the area book was really immature and lacked commitment. She had 4 kids and all day they would just sit on this mattress and watch tv all day. She didn't work and left the house with all her young kids in the house all alone. We tried with her but she was just too lazy, for lack of a better word. I think she had some mental issues. If so, she's already saved.

Angelica and familia are going strong. Alexandre, the dad didn't go to church yet but we taught them the plan of happiness and they really liked it. Going into it I was already wanting to teach the gospel of Jesus Christ but the Spirit guided me to teach from the Family Proclamation to the world. They really liked it and are planning on getting married in November If they get married in the temple I won't be able to see it because I leave next November but we'll see if it works out. lexandre said that the gospel just makes sense and that he wondered why nobody else teaches the principle of eternal families. uhhh, because we have the truth.

João Vitor is this guy we found from the area book. He's a really smart kid and is really studying the Book of Mormon to try to see if it's true. His problem is that he wants proofs. He wants to be able to touch the truth, but the Lord doesn't work like that. He's not letting the spirit work with him. He said he's been baptist since he was tiny and that he just isn't able to believe in the BOM yet. We gave him "our search for happiness" for him to understand what the church is all about.

I'm running out of time so I will try to close this thing up real fast. Where I am right now is called Caruaru. It's in the interior of Pernabmbuco and it's a bit cooler than my other area, which is good. We live on the top floor of our 4th floor building and we had to haul my big suitcase up flights of stairs. That was fun. There's a balcony that looks out to a pretty dang good view and there's enough room to jump rope. I need to look for a pullup bar fast. Last night we went to people's houses to say bye to people. There just happened to be like 30 people at our lunch on Sunday so it was perfect to take pics and say bye to everyone. We took a subway and 2 buses to get to our house so we're definitely not in Recife anymore. Felipe got transferred too so that's weird. We're parting ways and starting new missions! At least that's what it feels like. 6 months is a long time! Well I love you all. The church is true and Jesus Christ is our savior. As members of his true gospel we need to do whatever we can to accelerate this work! We'll see how this next week goes. It's a mystery and i'ts exciting.

Elder Dallin Stephen Carroll