Wednesday, September 18, 2013

I'm the Happiest Girl in the World!

This week was a real test of patience... BUT! I'm extremely happy because I got some great mail this week!
Thank you Mom for the wonderful package and for the other package of Oreos from E. Toro,  my new favorite mystery person (mom's friend) - I am VERY grateful! All of the Brazilians wanted to try them and loved them (it was a bit hard to share though :) 
Irma Clarice - I Love This Woman!
This week had a lot of ups and downs with many dropped appointments; people weren't home, people forgot, etc. but that's the life of a missionary and that's okay. We got to teach English class again on Saturday but this time I taught ALONE! I was a bit nervous. So there's three levels: basic, intermediate, and advanced. I taught the intermediate class since they know the basics but I had to explain a lot of the rules in Portuguese which was not easy. I had a little help from one of the other Sisters in my zone, Sister Robinson, but she's from new Zealand so everything I teach them she laughs at because our "English" is apparently really different. It was a learning experience for sure and I realized what little grammar I know even in my own language ha.

Another great part of our week was eating American pancakes! They were so good. One of the members thought I'd be missing American food and made us a bunch, it was so nice. We didn't have the baptism yesterday that we were supposed to have because she never showed up to church so that was kinda sad but no worries, we will work on getting her to church again and finding others to teach! Prayer really is a beautiful thing and I'm so grateful that the Lord hears our prayers. He knows we need all the help we can get. Not much more news for this week so until next week. Have a great one and love you all!!

Brazilian Pancakes - what a difference!

Dog on a House - Pretty Normal Here!

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Tough but Loving It!

Missions are so wonderfully hard and I am so grateful for them. They magnify our weaknesses but I've realized this is how we learn!
We feel a lot more settled this week which is really nice. So in our mission we have a weekly goal to speak with 70 people on the street each week. Maybe that sounds easy but I really don't think so and we haven't reached that goal yet. We're working on it. But like I talked about last week...there are just a lot of awkward things that happen on the mission and this is sometimes one of them. I was told to embrace the awkward!
My Portuguese isn't perfect but it's getting better and clearly it's a weakness right now that will only get better by practicing. We meet some really interesting people this way. Anyway, we taught an English class for the first time on Saturday and it was the funniest 2 hours of my week. They are all not Mormon and had some great questions about the gospel, as well as America and it was just a good time. One man said there's no way I was a member of the church my whole life because all Mormons have 6 or more kids to which I had to reply that's not always true lol. But it was funny.
On another day this week we had divisions with our District Leader Elder Patrício and his companion Elder Myers, who came here the same day as me from the great Iowa Des Moines mission. Since our whole zone is really young in the mission (6 months or less) we have our District leaders and Zone leaders come out and teach with us once a week and this day we got to eat dinner with them at Irmã Cida's house.
Irmã Cida is like our Mom in this area. She pretty much expects us to visit her every day and you can't tell by this picture but she is HILARIOUS! She feeds us every time we visit and she may be the cause of any weight gain. Her food is so good. Oh and here we say Irmã which means sister and then their first name as opposed to the states where we say Sister and the last name. That was something I had to get used to here. But anyway Irmã Cida is amazing and loves us. I am so grateful for her.

Oh I have a challenge for all of you. We got a message from our President this week to read the Book of Mormon from now until Christmas and count how many times Christ's name appears and to mark all of the Christ like attributes we read. I know that as we do this we will inevitably become more like our Savior.

I'm so excited for Christmas! I can't believe it's so soon. Well it feels soon...I love and miss you all! Thank you for the prayers and love. Tchau!

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Happy Labor Day!
Me and Sister Meireles
So it's been a pretty crazy week since transfers. I got to stay and my new companion is Sister Meireles. She's Brazilian but she's fluent in English because she lived in Utah for 2 years which is nice. We had some challenges this week just getting organized because I've only been here for 1 transfer (6 weeks) and now have to relay all the information to her but I don't even know everything yet! But she is so great and patient and wonderful. She reminds me a lot of Nina (my cousin for those of you who don't know her). She is also so tiny which adds to the similarities. Now we just have to find our rhythm teaching together. Transfers are great but it's all new again working with different companion but as we get to know each other everything falls into place. We have been getting more organized day by day and it's starting to feel normal again but we have so much work to do in this area!

We have tons of people of visit and teach and I'm so grateful that we're busy. Que bênção. We have been so busy planning that we haven't been sleeping enough and then I don't have time to write in my journal so I'm pretty far behind. This is a problem for me lol. We have 2 people preparing to get baptized in 2 weeks and so we're really excited for those. The Lord really does work miracles and keeps putting people in our path that need the gospel. I have seen it change lives already.
I got up to bear my testimony at church yesterday and it was the first time I did it in Portuguese! It went well...despite the fact that I was extremely nervous and almost passed out afterwards. But I'm fine now! haha. I feel like I don't do a good enough job explaining what I do here or the experiences I'm having or the things I'm learning but it is hard to explain. What I do know is that everything I'm learning now is shaping me into the person I want to become; more like Jesus Christ. That is all of our goal here on earth and the more I teach that to people and see the growth and change, the more it strengthens my testimony that this is the true church.
I love this gospel and love being a missionary. Sometimes we have some awkward situations...(like every day)...but I learned during my mission in Nauvoo from another Sister "People already think we're weird walking around in skirts, might as well share something cool with them." So pretty much don't worry about it and preach what you know. I feel so blessed to be here.
Found this Mural and thought it was cool!
Happy Birthday this week, Thursday, to my Wonderful Dad - here's to many many more! Love you! Til next week-

Sister Cox