Monday, September 28, 2015

33rd Week Out, 13th week in Juazeiro, Fortaleza

This week we were going through our list of less active members, and we were going to pass by a man named Chrysten.  We got to the address listed for him but no one answered the door.  Now at this point we could have just gone on to the next less active, but I felt an impression to "try harder." So I knocked the doors of some of Chrysten's neighbors and quickly found out that Chrysten no longer lived there and no one knew who Chrysten was.  We did ended up finding a man that knew Chrysten!  He explained how to get to this long road where he lived but he didn't know which house.  (Roads here in the center of Juazeiro are long!  They can have thousands of houses on a road!)  I wanted to give up, but I still had that feeling of "try harder."  We made our way to this road and we asked people, restaurants, knocked doors, anyone on this street but no one knew who Chrysten was.  We were walking down this road and I saw a woman through a small window as we walked by and had a STRONG feeling to go and talk to her.  She said the name sounded familiar and she called her son over to ask if he knew Chrysten, and he did!  They described the house but didn't have the number.  We started down the road to find it, and while we were walking, this kid that knew him yelled from behind us and said we had passed it.  This time he guided us to his door.  We clapped our hands and Chrysten answered the door!  He hadn't been to church in 10 years, nor seen missionaries since because he had moved and no one knew where.  He was so happy to see us and we bore our testimonies that Heavenly Father truly guided us to him.  We invited him back and Sunday morning as we walked into church, Chrysten was standing at the doors and said "I beat you."  He was baptized at 28 and now is 39, at the time there wasn't even a church building here yet, just a small group that met in a 2 story house.  We could have given up many times with finding him, but because of our efforts, and listening to the promptings I felt, Heavenly Father guided us to one of his lost sheep. After 10 years, Chrysten took the sacrament this Sunday.  

This Sunday we also had 2 baptisms.  One was Daniel who is the younger brother of Thiago!  Through Thiago, we were able to help Daniel come to a surety that this church is true.  Ezikel was our other baptism.  He is 17 years old and suffers with depression.  He is the son of Jovelina, the woman we baptized last Sunday.  When we first met him, he didn't want to talk with us.  I asked him if we could talk with him for 30 seconds one day and we told him how much Heavenly Father loved him.  We told him that he could feel of that love if he would just pray to our Heavenly Father.  After that lesson, he prayed with us and told Heavenly father he was sorry for not believing in him.  The spirit was so strong.  His mom was crying and from that point on Ezikel wanted to hear more and more.  Last Sunday I motivated him to try and go to church one time!  Just one time.  I told him "If you don't like it, you don't have to go again."  But I know if anyone goes to church one time, they will feel something different than they have ever felt before, that is the Holy Ghost!  It testifies of truth to all of us through this feeling.

I know that this church is true!  I also had the opportunity to become close to one of the sisters investigators.  His name was Cicero and we have become good friends over the last 2 weeks.  I had the opportunity to baptize him as well.  I love this program Heavenly Father has created for us! Brothers and Sisters, I hope you all know that I'm here serving a mission because I want to.  I'm not serving because anyone made me!  I am here because I wanted to!

I love you all and thank you for all your love and support!

Impressions of Juazeiro Brasil

  1. Brasillians play Just Dance using YouTube!
  2. Brasillians really love birds! Almost every house you enter has pet birds.
  3. Dont baptize your camara.....yea

Rua Republica da Armenia 765
Agua Fria
60821-760 Fortaleza-CE

(Note mail in Brazil is regulated as you might have heard, packages and even letters have a high chance of being opened if you do not cover the letter or package in pictures of Jesus and Catholic Mary. Shipping takes about a month time sometimes longer.

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