Monday, November 28, 2016

"We Had A Great Feast"

Elder Christofferson loves his new companion Elder Oliviera

Hi everybody!!
I hope you all had a great week! Man transfer weeks are always crazy but fun. Of course this week had it's ups and downs but a great week overall. 

My new companion is Elder Oliveira. He is from the state of São Paulo. He has been out a year and 2 months. He is AMAZING. I already have so much respect for the guy. He has only been a member for about 3 years. His family practically disowned him for joining and going on a mission. They don't even write to him. It's so sad but what faith and courage he has to accept that and still go on a mission. I seriously am so so so happy with having Elder Oliveira as my companion. We already work really well together and I can just already tell that this is going to be a great transfer. 

A lot of this week was cleaning, figuring out the living situation, and me showing the other 3 Elders the area since they are new. But towards the end of the week things got back to normal. 

One crazy thing that happened during the moving process. Because the other area in our zone where Elder Janish was closed, they needed to bring all the stuff from the apartment there to our apartment here. We needed more beds and stuff for them. A whole bunch of stuff that is not important happened but finally Friday morning we got all the stuff to our house and started to unload it. We got everything up except for the "guarda ropa" or dresser/closet thing. It was too big and would not fit up the stairs. We needed tools to deconstruct it. I started to ask all the neighbors for tools and none had them. Then one guy who I asked looked out at it sitting on the street and said "wait I have an idea." He came out with a bunch of rope. So yeah, we basically roped up a huge dresser and pulled it up from the outside over our balcony. It was so crazy and hilarious and just so Brasil. It almost fell which would of been so bad but it didn't and it is now in our house. A majority of the photos are of that because I stayed down to push it up from the bottom at first and then take pics. The best part was when Elder Janish asked the guy, "You know how to do this?" and all the guy said was "I'm Brasilian." That was all the answer we needed! hahaha 

Thursday we went to Patrick's. His mom answered and said he was working. Dang. Usually we just say thanks and leave because she seems pretty closed off but this time I said, " Well can we come in and talk with you?" Of all the time I have been teaching Patrick I never actually met his mom formally. She works a lot too so I haven't seen her that many times. She is about 45 or 50 and is really nice. She seemed kind of shocked that we wanted to talk to her. She explained that it was so rare she was home at that time because usually she is working that hour. Right when she said that I just knew it was a miracle, and that we were there for a reason at that time. We taught her the Restoration and it was so spiritual. It blows my mind how powerful that message is. The Spirit that resides during the 1st lesson is special. Especially when recounting the First Vision when Joseph saw Heavenly Father and Christ. I know I'm thinking ahead but imagine how cool it would be if we baptized Patrick and then a few weeks later HE baptized his mom! That is best case scenario of course but one can hope.

So this week I had one of the worst days of my mission yet but I also had one of my best days. First, the bad day: I was having some bad stomach issues and then that afternoon had a fever of 101. It was terrible. I got a blessing and cried because I was in pain and wanted home. I hadn't had a moment like that yet. But now it's out of the way, thankfully! 

Friday night we had a District/Zone meeting again and during the meeting, Elder Dupaix, our zone leader, had us all get up and talk about why we were on a mission. I, of course was still sick, weak, and sensitive so I cried during mine. I said, "I'm out here because I love my Savior and how on hard days like today I need to remember that to make it." Then I talked about how we say “in our family we serve missions” and how I wanted to be an example of that. It was so cool. 

After the meeting we decided to have a one day late Thanksgiving dinner because we now have 5 Americans in the zone The American sisters made Apple Pies and Mashed Potatoes. Then a few people bought ice cream and bread and sliced turkey. We had a great feast! 

Saturday we went and visited a contact we had made earlier in the week, Amanda. She is about 25. She has a 2 year old daughter and a husband. We got there and started to talk and get to know her. We found out that she and her husband were not legally married and my heart dropped. Ugh! But then another miracle happened. We asked her if she went to a church. She said yes the Methodist church on the corner. We asked if she had been baptized there and said no because there you have to be married legally. She then went on to tell us how she and her husband had actually submitted all the stuff to get married legally and were expecting it back in the next 2-3 weeks! Wow! They are definitely prepared to hear the gospel right now. We taught her a spiritual first lesson and are going back next week.

Sunday at church after the first hour the 2nd counselor to the Bishop asked me "can you speak... today!?" Of course I said I could. Our ward here is flipped so sacrament meeting is last so I only had an hour of prep for a 10 minute talk. It was crazy but all I had were some bullet points and some scriptures but I did it! The spirit was definitely helping with the Portuguese. I spoke about members and missionaries working together. I have seen here that simply, we the missionaries, just straight up need the members for this work. I explained that the best I could in my talk. After the meeting one lady gave us 2 references!

Another thing that happened at church was the Bishop's wife invited us to choir practice. So we went last night. We are practicing for Christmas Sunday and it is so fun and cool to be in a Brasilian Choir and singing in Portuguese. I love Christmas music. 

Anyways, I know this church is true! I love it and I love you all!! Have a great week!

Elder Spencer P. Christofferson

Elder Janish watching the neighbor who had the "idea" tie the rope around the dresser/closet.

All the neighbors pitched in to help. 

Spencer is the photographer at the bottom. Glad they didn't drop it on him. 

Almost there! 
Just over the edge and they got it!

The Thanksgiving Feast

A turkey sandwhich mashed potatoes, apple pie and ice cream. A Mission Style Thanksgiving Feast! 

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