Monday, June 27, 2011

June 27, 2011 Letter

Lets see, what else..... Oh ya. Last Monday, our pday. We spent the whole day with one of our investigators. His name is Diego. We walked along the beach, helped him with English, and just talked. Then we went and got açai, and went to teach him. Then he bought us dinner. So it was great. There´s a real problem if we´re spending our pdays with investigators and they don't get baptized right? But anyway, it was a little late, it was 9:30. So we started booking it home. But it´s on the other side of our area, so buy the time we got home it was like 10:15. But, what really makes me mad are the members that drive by and yell, "Oi Elderes! Horário!" Like yelling at us for being on the street. But hello!!!  You know the rules, why don't you pull over and say., "hey elders, its a little late, can i help out by giving you a ride home?" Is that too hard? Ugh, just wish some people here were a little more helpful, and a little less nagging. But, ya. That's me on my soapbox. Sorry.

So this week has been a little rough. It was a holiday on Thursday called São João. Some holiday celebrating John the Baptist. They all build fires in the streets, do fireworks all night long, eat a lot, A LOT, of corn, and drink a lot of beer. Plus, the parties are a lot bigger in the interior, cities like Gravatá or Caruaru. So, everybody leaves the beach, and travels 2 or 3 hours to go to these parties. So there weren't really a lot of people here. It was weird. We´d walk down the streets and they´d be empty. Really weird. But hey, they´re having fun right?

That's about it. Just a lot of missionary work. Sometimes its really tough to be a missionary. Life would just be easier at home. But, I know this is where I'm supposed to be. I know its where the Lord wants me to be. So that's where I am. I can only do what I can, but that's what I´ll do. I love being a missionary. Knowing that there are so many people out there that i can help, that need me..... It just makes me want to be the best missionary i can. I don't know how to explain it. Its just a different feeling than im used to. But its great. I love it. I know this church is true. I love it. And i love and miss you all. Keep being your good ol´ selves.

Elder Tracy

Thursday, June 23, 2011

June 20, 2011 Letter

Dear Everyone,

Another week come and gone.  So yesterday was my 5 month mark! Yay for 5 months...... haha

Ok. This week has been a little tough. I have a new companion, Elder Hocker, so i have to kinda show the area and find people to teach and stuff. So its been different. I'm used to Paiva telling me what we´re going to do. We´re trying to find new people. It´s hard. There are a lot of big buildings that we cant just go knock, or clap, door to door. So we got like 50 pamphlets of the plan of salvation and wrote our phone number, the address of the church, stuff like that, and left it with the gate keeper guys. Hopefully someone calls us. That´d be great.

We´ve been teaching Maria this week. She still has a problem with her "husband".. But we´re getting through it, and we remarked her baptism for this Saturday. She´s an amazing woman, she´s just used to a different lifestyle. Everyone in Brazil is. It´s so different. But i can see the gospel really changing her life.

Something kinda cool is last Monday we were teaching Diego in the house of the ward mission leader in Setubal 1. There were also 6 Americans there for a study abroad program. They all had served missions in Brazil so it was like a lesson with 8 missionaries. But at the end, my heart started beating fast and my face got really hot, and i felt like inviting him to be baptized. I was a little confused because we´ve asked him 2 weeks in a row and he´s always said he´s not ready. But i asked him anyway. And..... he still said that he´s not ready. Kinda a letdown huh? But he said something interesting. He said he´s thought a lot about his baptism. He´s just looking for a bigger something. And he doesn't know if the bigger something will come before or after his baptism. But he´s really a good guy, and he´s progressing a lot. I know he didn't accept the invitation to be baptized, but i know there was a reason i had the feeling to invite him. And I'm glad i followed that feeling.

But ya, other than that just another week in the service of the Lord. It´s great. I'm really loving my mission. It´s super hard at times, I get really tired at times, but i know that this church is true. I know that I'm here helping people have the greatest thing they can have on this earth, the gospel of Jesus Christ. It´s amazing and i love it.

I love you all. Keep being the great people you are.

Elder Tracy

Thursday, June 16, 2011

June 13, 2011 Letter

Dear Everyone,

Sounds like things are going really good at home. Well another week.... It was a great one. This week we focused a lot on Pedro. 2 weeks ago he finally accepted baptism after 3 years of missionaries. He went to catholic school and was a catholic priest. He was searching for the truth and was really trying to do good with his life. Anyways, his whole family are members... his wife, and his son. So it was really exciting when he accepted. So this last week was foccused a lot around him, making sure his questions, doubts were gone. But honestly he didnt have many. He´d been taught by missionaries for 3 years so he was pretty darn solid. The only question he had was where he could get garments... It was great. But his baptism was on Saturday. It was really something. We went there at 2 to help the family with food and such. THen went back at 5 to clean the font and set up more. The font didnt fill up very fast, and Pedro is a big guy, so we had to speed up the process by filling it up with buckets. And who says missionaries dont do a lot with their arms? Phew.... But the baptism was something special. There were like 50 people there. It was so cool. He had his son Aeron baptize him. WHen he came out of the water they hugged for about a minute. It was so cool!! The spirit was so strong. Then after, Pedro and Aerlani both bore their testimonies about family and all the missionaries that helped throughout those 3 years. It felt good to know that we were able to have a part and to finish and really help that family even more. Im really excited too, because in one year i get to go to their sealing in the temple! It´s going to be so cool!

Well thats basically the week...... except... TRANSFERS!!!


im staying in Setubal. But Paiva got transfered. He´s going to be a Zone Leader in Olinda for his last transfer. Remember earlier when i said i was pretty sure i was getting transfered and he was staying and training? Well after that he and President had a little chat and Paiva told him that he couldnt do it. He needed someone to help push, or drag, him. So thats what happened. Ok so the part you all want to know. My new companion is Elder Hocker. He´s from Idaho Falls, and he laughed when i said Dad was from (Ririe?) But he´s good. Hes been out for almost a year. Im looking forward to get to know him.

Well thats about it. Things on the mission are great. I love it. I can already see it changing my life. Its great.

I love you all. Think about you lots, but not too much...

Elder Tracy

Monday, June 6, 2011

June 6, 2011 Letter

Dear Family,

Sounds like things are good at home.  Well, this has been a good week. The most exciting news is we had a 2 baptisms, and marked 2 more. It´s been a busy week, teaching them everyday and such. We had stake conference this weekend so we had the baptism in the morning. They´re usually at night here, so it was different. But it was good. 2 young women, Leila and Estefani. Im trying to send a picture, I´ll work on that later.

This week will be busy as well. Tonight we´re going to mark another baptism for Diego. He´s a referal from Setubal 1. He´s 21 and our ward mission leader found him on the beach playing soccer. They talked, and he came to church the next day. He also came to stake conference, which was cool because it was in a different city. But ya, Diego is cool. He´s been coming to our english classes too. We teach the bishop and now Diego every wednesday night. It´s good. They learn english, and i piece together grammer principles. It helps me to understand better. It also is a great missionary tool. 2 weeks ago we were in the bishops office, and Diego started asking questions about the prophet, because of the pictures. Then we started talking about it. It just opens lots of doors for teaching. It´s great.

The other 2 marked for this Sunday are Maria, the awesome lady I told you about before, and a man named Pedro. Pedro has been going to church for about 3 years. His wife is a member, his son is a member, ... he´s just been postponing for ever. But last Monday we went there and invited him. It was great. The silence after you ask is crucial. It gives a chance for the spirit to tell them it´s true. He looked around and nobody said anything. And he accepted! It was a great night! So ya, 3 baptisms this Sunday, hopefully. 2 Men, and 1 Woman. It will be great.

Next monday is transfers. Im pretty sure im going to be transfered.... Mostly because President Emerick called Paiva. First he asked him what he wanted to do his last transfer, then he told him what will probably happen next transfer, disregarding whatever Paiva said earlier, so I´m not really sure why he asked. But, Paiva will stay in Setubal and train again, which means I´ll be transfered somewhere else. Im excited. I´m really looking forward to the new experience. New companion, hopefully someone who doesnt speak any english so i can learn more, new area, just new everything. It will be great.

Not much else to say. Life is good here. Love you all.

Elder Tracy