Archive for July 2008

07/28/2008 Letter

July 28, 2008

Nossa Familia foi muito bom este semanha!! Temos 2 batismos e foi muito cheque!!
E agora eu esto escreve este carta para vocês desfrutarem neste semanha!!
[I think it says “Our families have been very good this week! We have 2 baptisms and (it) was very cheque! And now I write this letter to you, enjoy this week!”]

It has been a great week I am really happy with our work. We baptized Alan and had a miracle baptism. Jean from Recife arrived for school. He had all his lessons already taught to him, he just needed baptism. I think the fasting we have been doing has really helped.  We lost one family and have gained 2 and although our goal was for 5 baptisms this last week.  Having 2 with one being a complete miracle was more than what I needed to understand the true blessings of fasting and prayer. I still am struggling a little bit with teaching certain parts of the lessons. But funny also I am able to teach my other parts with clarity and simplicity. I think when I desired to learn another language I never imagined I would know so much in just 5 months. If this keeps up, I hope by December I will be able to teach an entire lesson to my companion with clarity. Last p-day was pretty cool, I made soup using ramen noodles carrots and potatoes and some McCormick gravy mix some other missionary left behind. It was really good – I was surprised I pulled it off as well as it was. We had to drop a few more investigators but found new ones to teach. I learned an important lesson again about doing our part. The Lord only requires me as a missionary to be obedient and humble and work hard. If the people reject the message or choose not to take our discussions then we did our part and the Lord did his. I learned this again when we were getting people for church. Out of all our investigators we have only, 2 were home to come to church. I was really discouraged but then remembered that I had done all I could do. I was a lot happier after that. So this week we are going to try again!! We had a good time teaching this last week

So Brazilians are good at soccer. My comp doesn’t even play for a team and can do all these crazy tricks. I need to learn a few things from them. Its funny how there are 8-9 year old kids here who are better jugglers than a lot of the high school aged guys on the soccer teams back home. They are doing all sorts of stuff. Plus here when soccer games happen you know it. Everything sort of shuts down and the games are going on the TV. When they win you know it because there’s a lot of noise the night it happens. And the next day everyone is extremely happy. If they lose the next day seems sort of normal but hopefully you aren’t wearing a tie with the colors for the other team!! (Just Kidding) but if they saw a jersey it would be for real.  We had a sweet rain storm the other day. But when we got to our apartment, the water was flowing from the light circuits.  It was pretty funny because all the floors were wet and we had to squeegee the floors dry. Oh well the apartment is so huge compared to the last one we actually have 2 bathrooms!!

It has been warming up here the last few days. September I guess is their hottest month here in Arcoverde. So I will get to experience the heat only 8 degrees from the equator for the first time. That should be a lot of fun. Wish me luck. We have a lot of work to do this week to prepare another person for baptism. Only 3 weeks left until transfers. I think the next one is the 18th. I am excited to see what happens. I am pretty sure one or the other will be transferred. This Friday is going to be interviews so I am way excited for that to happen. Not much else has happened we are just enjoying the transfer. It has flown by way too fast.  I love you all.
Elder Allred

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July 21, 2008

Letter from 07/21/2008

July 21, 2008

Oi meu Familia!!!
Well this week has been ups and downs. Let’s start with the really sad part. We lost our family last Saturday. It was probably one of the most depressing times I’ve had. We tried to return and talk to them but they weren’t there. It was a pretty depressing day. But the next day we were blessed in abundance with a new investigator who has been taught the lessons and moved. We just need to prepare him for the interviews and teach him a little more for this Saturday. Also the youth had an activity that allowed us to receive 6 new referrals and we contacted 2. We have a lot to be thankful for now. My meeting in Cararu went well. Of course it was the first time we had the opportunity to listen to an actual zone conference with President Emerik our new president. He was really all for contacts which makes me happy because I love contacts.

 

That is funny that you say that about my comp, mom. I had the same thing happen to me. He is a good guy, it just is taking me some time to adjust to having to share an apartment with someone. So who else is in the branch with you that transferred over? Whitlock’s and Bair’s I am thinking. I am glad to hear the new ward is going well. Believe me I am getting accustomed to changes and they aren’t easy to make but it is the will of the lord that we make changes in our lives and when we do it is because he has something for us. Here I am trying to adjust to working with members more. In my last area the members were practically beating the door down with references and help. Here it is different. And the work is only going to increase if work with the members. It makes me wish I would have worked more with the missionaries back home and given them more references. Anyways it gets really cold here at nights. It rains almost ounce a day too. But everyone already knows the crazy Americans are pretty much accustomed to cold weather. I get asked all the time. Elder Allred esta com frio? Nao esta com frio nao.. Que Isso!!! Esto accostmado na neve isso nada!! (As near as I can tell, it saysElder Allred, how are you with this cold?  This isn’t cold, what’s this?  This is nothing like snow.”)  It is pretty much like that. But I am wondering how Elder (Jason Morgan) Allred in São Paulo is doing. I bet it is way cooler down there. Right now I just sleep with my socks on. I seem to be alright with that. I have to have the fan blowing on me at all time though. The mosquitoes here can’t get me that way! The repellant works half and half but if I don’t have the fan on me then they just bite me anyways.

 

We had 2 baptisms this last Saturday. That is the good that happened. The day wasn’t so depressing after those baptisms. I baptized Diego who is 14 years old. His friend Nando was baptized 2 weeks ago, Elder Sampaio baptized Marcos who is the other of their group of friends. We have 2 planned for this Saturday. It seems the younger men are always the first in our lessons to be baptized. The parents never seem to accept the lesson or don’t want to change. But we work with them and give them the opportunity. One thing I’ve learned is I do my part the best that I am able with the skills given me and the Lord does his part, finally it is up to the investigator to do their part. If they don’t accept the message or choose not to do what we invite them to do then that is all that can be done. Elder Bednar taught that to us!!

 

Man the Cracker Barrel sounds sooooo good right now!! Oh well I guess I can wait for another 2 years!! I didn’t get the package but that is probably because the corrieos are on strike again and probably won’t receive any for a while. Second time in 5 months this has happened I have a feeling it will happen more!! Hey Tyler I am not sure the name of it. But it begins with these words as much as I can remember them from my companion.´´ It starts with you.. It …. Why… it doesn’t even matter how hard you try..´´(chorus) I try so hard and get so far.. but in the end it doesn’t even matter.. I get so far to lose it all but in the end it doesn’t even matter!!!“ I hope that helps. It has this music at the beginning that the ring tone uses that is a bunch of single piano notes. My last comp knew the lyrics by heart and told them to me the day of transfers I thought it went well with what transfers feel like to us missionaries. We don’t really like them!! Well I had better I love you guys!!!

Elder Allred

07/14/2008 Letter

July 21, 2008

Hey Familia!!

This week has been really great. I really liked the ability to have a normal p-day on transfer day it was nice. Anyways the p-days are on Monday now. The New president changed that so far. I will have to adjust but I think it will be better this way for everyone. We had to bump the date up for one of our baptisms we couldn’t get all the lessons he needed in time but it’s only until this Saturday and we still have a lot of work we need to complete before he will be ready. It was sort a good week to work but also a lot of planning. With the New President and a new transfer there is a lot of planning needed to be done every week. I finished the book Jesus the Christ finally!! It was a good book to read and opened my eyes to a lot of concepts in the Gospel I have heard but never expounded upon. Don’t worry though I won’t teach any of that to our investigators I think it would be way too much to handle. I am trying to learn how to perfect the 2nd lesson now. I sort of bombed the first 2 times trying to teach people the beginning of it. It has been really hard for me to adjust to teaching here. I want to say everything at ounce and have found I can only give it in small doses or they won’t understand I am talking about. My Portuguese is coming along well. I am learning a lot more now that I have figured out the main words in the language. I try to study adjectives and verbs now every day. It is crazy how far I’ve been able to come for just speaking 5 months. Dad wow that is some really great Portuguese have you been practicing? So Saturday was cool. My comp had a great idea to sing hymns with the family we are teaching. It was sort of more like me and him sang hymns because the other Brazilian churches here sing hymns played with guitar which aren’t usually traditional like ours, butt we managed to get by. They really liked that though and after wards we taught them more about families and invited them to church. The made popcorn (Popicano Americano) is what they call it. Knowing my love for popcorn you know I was all over that!! We are teaching a 12 year old named Alan. He is one of my favorites to teach; he actually makes it a conversation more than a teaching and makes it much easier for him to understand the gospel. Yesterday after church we taught only 3 lessons it was sort of a hassle trying to get all the investigators to church and also many of them spend time with their families which makes it difficult especially when their families decide to leave for the day. We had a drunk guy come up to us and talk to us for around 10 minutes. He wouldn’t let us go and tried following us. Finally I gave him a contact card and told him to go home and sleep. He gave me a hug after that and I was really prepared for that. Yeah that’s the crazies down here though, the drunks.

Today is going to be great I think we will have a lot success we still got to work with Diego a lot before baptism this weekend!!

Tyler Happy Birthday this Wednesday!!! Dad Mom Megan Tyler it is fine if I didn’t get any letters this week don’t worry I will read them next week!!! I love you all a lot and hope things are going well for you!! 

Love Elder Allred

 

Letter from 07/09/2008

July 9, 2008

Hey family how are things going!! Well I didn’t get transferred and neither did my companion, so I am here for another 6 weeks. I think we will have a lot of success this next transfer.  There are about 10 people we are teaching and 6 with marked baptisms.  Thanks dad for the Portuguese I understand most of it!! The investigators are all very well. We baptized Ernando who is 14 on Saturday. I was chosen to be the bastinado (baptizer)!! It was my second time so it was much better than the first time. I actually knew what I was saying!! It has been a great week for teaching, although we had a lot of meetings. We met the new president and his wife on Friday and that was in Cararua which is a good 2 hour drive. That eats up the day. Then we had a baptism and then transfers. We will be working really hard this next transfer to get all of our baptisms. It has been rewarding though, a total of 3 people have been baptized. We are teaching a lot of Ernando’s friends now, about 3 of them all really want baptism.  We are teaching Alan, who is also a youth, who really wants baptism. His aunt had the 1st lesson but is always at college it is hard to get her. He is very enthusiastic though and has already chosen me to be his batizador. We are trying to teach a family right now. They all really enjoy us and enjoy our message. I have found it isn’t so easy to teach a whole family of 6 people. They have one little girl who is full of energy and it gets hard to keep her settled down to get the lesson across fully, but we manage and I am learning. Tonight we will teach them the second lesson and invite them to church again. We met a teen the other day, he is about 17.

 

My comp made a contact with his mom and she wasn’t there so we taught him. It is great to see the excitement they have when we teach them about our church. The people here are really nice. I’ve done a lot of knocking on doors and people are just really open and welcome.  They invite you to come in and share a message with them. They are never to busy to hear the word of the Lord. I feel great to serve them here in Arcoverde. One example is I did a Bata Porta (door) and told her who I was and that we were there trying to share the gospel with everyone. She said come on in. (Entre, Entre) I said.. um momento Irma´ voce vou visitou  a Igreja este domingo? 9 h da manha? ela disse… eu não sai.. entre, entre.. (I think that means “One moment Irma, will you visit the church on Sunday?  9 a.m.  in the morning.  She said I do not leave (her house?), come in, come in”).   I had to explain that we had lots of people to teach and that if she wanted to she could visit the church and kindly invited her. It just goes to show they are open and nice and want the word even if they can’t or won’t go to church.  They love the Lord and want the word anyways. I just wish we could help more to come to church. I think that will only come with faith. I am glad to hear about Nauvoo, that it went so well. I was praying for you all.  I am also glad to hear that you all had a blast!! Those always seemed to me like fun, I am glad you were able to experience it. Hopefully you did what mom did and wrote it your journal!!! I can’t wait to read your journal page mom!!

 

Dad I hope that that page will help you with the task you have. I will include that in my prayers this week!!

 

That is really funny that Candice made that; tell her I miss her too, and all my buddies (Cadas). Well I love all of you; I know your summer has been going well so far, it sounds like it has been. I hope it continues to go well. I haven’t received the package yet but maybe this next week or two when we have district meetings and interviews. Well I love you, again talk to you soon. Good Luck with the YM conference in Fargo. Have a safe drive.
Love You
Elder Allred

Letter from 07/02/2008

July 4, 2008

Boa Dia Meu Familia? Como estas coisas?

This week has been really interesting we baptized Fabia on Saturday and have received over 14 new investigators from knocking on doors. It has been a rewarding week. Last Wednesday we had a sad but also good meeting. Our President and His wife have about ended their mission and will be leaving this week. We meet our new president on Friday. It was a lot of fun and very sad to see I only really got to know them for three months. But there will be reunions after the mission. It was a lot of fun trying to get to Cararu though we took a taxi of sorts over the mountain and everything lots of fun!!!! Then it was zone conference!! After zone conference we went to a meat place and ate it was really good stuff. We said goodbye to our president and his wife and then the District leader came up to me. "So Elder Allred, are you ready for divisions?" Yeah no one told me about them. So I went to a different city with nothing but my study materials I had brought and spent the night out there!! That was a lot of fun!! Then the next day it was back to Arcoverde and work.

I read a quote the other day from President Ezra Taft Benson he said the key to missionary work is work!! SO I work harder now and I can a difference in the mission experience when I focus all my efforts on the work then on other things related to the mission. It has helped greatly.

Also I received some great letters from grandparents. All the letters I’ve received from them have really been a blessing. Thanks also for the words of encouragement you sent me on my mission I used to read them when I had problems. Now I am pretty acclimated and loving the mission more each day!!! It doesn't seem like I’ve been out as long as I have it goes by too fast.

Anyways I will share with you what happened to me during a lesson. We were inviting an investigator to attend church this Sunday she has so many doubts. We were trying to explain to her some things about her doubts. She had one more thing. She said she worried that people would talk about her and point and laugh immediately Ether 12:26 came to mind. It was perfect for her it seemed to calm all her worries. That just goes to show that through the spirit people are taught. The scripture I had used for other things in my personal life but to her it meant something different. Anyways we will visit her tonight and see how things are going. I hope that her doubts are gone!!

Well this week we have one more baptism and then it is transfers. We will see if I stay or go but I hope to stay!! If I go I will try to write next week. Sometimes transfers are difficult to write on!! Love you all. Elder Allred

Thanks for all your prayers and support. So the Internet just crashed and if I didn't answer all your questions I am sorry I will try and read your e-mails another day. We aren't so lucky to have good Internet here in Brazil!!! I will try to send this out as soon as I am able, sorry.

Hey dad I am just right next to the football field, I can see it from my house also their is a Texaco in my area the apartment I don’t know but I will get the number for you if I don’t get transferred!!! Love you dad, love you mom