Sometimes I wake up and think "Wow. Do I actually live in Brasil??? How cool is that?!" I will be here in Laranjeiras another transfer with Sister de Souza. Things are okay here. We had Jenifer's baptism on Saturday which generally would be an extremely happy occasion. Unfortunately practically NO ONE from our ward attended which really was disheartening. There were only about 7 people including me and my comp, the elders, and Jenifer. She didn't seem to mind and was still happy so that was good to see. And honestly its not about the numbers really, I am confident the spirit can be present with 3 people present but everything was just odd. I´m not sure how to explain it. We really need more support from the members here but we can only do what we can do. We are teaching this guy, Marcel, right now that is just great. To paint an image: He is Zach Efrons twin. I dont even really know who Zach Efron is except that hes on the Disney Channel and this guy looks just like him! He has a real desire to learn about the gospel and is reading the Book of Mormon! I don't know theres just something about him. He treats us better than some of the members in our ward too....for example he always feeds us and gives us rides no matter the time or situation!
The other night it was really late and usually his mom goes with us in the car when he drops us off at home but she was already asleep. We assured him that we were okay to walk but he insisted and ran accross the street and got his NEIGHBOR! I´m sure she thought we were insane (what kind of weird rules do these mormons have anyway??) but he´s so nice and truly inquisitive about our teachings. He has a long way to go, that's for sure. But we are doing our best to plan and prepare lessons specifically for him that will help him feel the spirit and know that these things are true, that it IS possible for him to change his life around. He may think a lot of the things he´s involved in are "fun" but ultimately we know better. I was reading in Jesus the Christ about "pleasure" versus oh I can't remember the other word now! I think its "joy or happiness" or something....dang it I cant remember but anyway basically it talked about the same thing. Thigns that give us pleasure are but temporary and not of God. But things that give us pure joy will have a lasting happiness for eternity. This is the message we hope to share with Marcel! Pray for us!
We went to Sao Paulo today (its transfers) but only because it was free for us to take the bus and we were able to get our things out of our suitcases. It was fun to see people like the elders from my district in the CTM!!!! They are all so great! Some got skinny and others....well not quite so skinny lol. I wonder how I appear to them?? I am so excited to have an extra P-day on Monday! I got mom's mission ties letter and dads email. Thanks for all the updates. Wish I had time to go through everything but really I appreciate it. I am so confident the 24th of July Celebration was a success!!!! Wish I could have been there to be a part of it! How wonderful the missionary effort is continuing to flourish up there. Gosh!!!! And people said the USA is hard to serve!! I think no matter where someones serving a mission its difficult for different reasons. I wont lie and say that I dont have my difficult days. But I just breathe deeply and remember that everything is for my good and part of Heavenly Fathers plan. He is shaping me into the person He wants me to become, I can see that. I am grateful for the lessons I am learning and things I am experiencing. I know whole heartedly that its only here I could possibly have such experiences. I dont really care about the numbers of people I baptize or dont baptize during my time here in Brasil, I just hope to make a difference! If I´ve left an area better than I found it when I arrived, I will know I have done my part. Thank you for your thoughts and prayers!!
-Sempre, Sister Peck