The new stake callings and whatnot is kind of crazy. I know a few people in our new stake then, which is good. Our ward seems to be the Universitário of Mesa South! Here in Estaca Campo Grande Monte Líbano (Big Field Mount Lebanon Stake), about half of the stake callings are members of this ward. It´s awesome! Everyone is crazy to baptize and nobody blocks baptisms and people work and give rides to investigators. Amazing! 204 people at Church as well! Let´s get this ward split SOON. I´ve never seen so many people at Church in my time here in Brazil.
Our last week was pretty nuts! We went on lots of divisions with the Zone Leaders (in our house) so that we could teach everyone, since lots of our investigators are only home at night. Out of the nine that came to Church, not all of them were too interested in our message, or "didn´t like Church" (which is a straight up lie), but lots of them were. One of which was Jair. He used to drink EVERY night and smoke a pack of cigarettes per day, but the Lord was helping him until he had stopped using these harmful substances and he got interviewed on Saturday and passed. But, Satan is real good at tempting people, and Jair fell into temptation. So... we´ll be helping him this week.
During the week, we´ve been teaching Ivaldo and Ilza, too. They are a couple (that´s legally married!) who loved Church, but have some things to work out before they are "ready" to be baptized. We had some really neat lessons with them including one with Ivaldo´s old friend, Armando, who is the 1st Counselor in the ward. Talk about a spiritual lesson! Irmão Armando can bear a strong testimony. I´m sure that Ivaldo and Ilza will get baptized, but there are some family situations going on that have postponed things.
And the winner of the week was Guilerme! Guilerme a 9 year-old cousin of a member family. We´ve been teaching him but had trouble finding his mom at home, so that we could talk with her. Everyone told us "she won´t let him get baptized" and all sorts of things, but she actually is a really cool lady. She accepted for him to be baptized and it happened last night! Woo hoo! Party.
Then, we had a family come to Church yesterday, consisting of José (dad), Patrick (11 year old son), and Caic (8 year old son). They have a complicated family, and José´s son was killed a few weeks ago, but now they want to turn their lives around. José LOVED Church and practically asked us to help him get baptized. Next Sunday is the date! Yes yes yes. He´s already putting a stop to the cigarettes and next up is coffee. We´re super excited for this week and we´ll make sure to bring plenty of members to get to know them.
I´m glad to hear that the sisters are baptizing back at home! Make sure to offer a time when you can visit these recent-converts and future baptisms with the sisters.They need willing people to help them! Members make all of the difference. And I´m sure that they would LOVE references. Whenever people ask about the Church, talk to them and invite them to learn more through the message that the missionaries have. We need to be happy and open as members of the Lord´s Church! Keep the Emerald Acres missionary spirit burning!
I love you all and thanks for the love and support and for being the best family ever.
Fotos: Guilerme with his fam and then with the Elders!