Monday, June 24, 2013

Destroyed With Three Huge Waves!

Ola boa tarde todo mundo!

One more great week! This week rained and rained and rained like crazy, but it was very good, and we´re not letting the cold and the rain get us down.

The week started off crazy on Monday night when the assistants called to tell us that we had to go the the bus station right then to pick up Elder Kakuscke´s new companion, so we got to give up the rest of or P-day to go there. We were sad to see him go, after a few good days of working with him, but we were happy that his area will be opening up again, so now we´re back to 8 areas in the zone. Not as big as zona tarumã, but its still a good zone. When we left them in their area and were waiting in the terminal for our bus back to our area we found out that the city was having a strike to lower the bus pass prices, so the terminal was like completely shut down cause there were a bunch of people surrounding all of the exits, and because the trusty Brasilian police system didn´t feel like stepping in, we got to sit on the bus waiting and waiting and waiting for like 2 hours, so we got home a little late. In the whole country of Brasil the people have been going on strike for a bunch of stuff, and it´s been crazy, in São Paulo and Rio de Janeiro we´ve heard that they´ve been setting cars on fire and a bunch of crazy stuff, but here in Ponta Grossa it´s been pretty relaxed so don´t worry.

Tuesday we had zone conference, so it was the last time that we´d see president Cordon, it was sad to see him go after so long, pretty much everyone was crying when he said bye.

The rest of the week was good, we got rained on non-stop for about 3 days, so it was pretty good to go on a swim, it´s been a while.

On Friday night me and my comp went with two of the Elders in our zone to their area to do a few baptismal interviews. We got on a bus and after a few minutes the elder that was leading us there started to say, uuum... uuum... like ever 5 minutes. When we asked him what it was, he said, ´´I think we´re on the wrong bus..´´ After a few more minutes he said ´´I think we should just get off here, cause we´re just getting farther and farther away from our appointment..´´ So we got off the bus in the middle of no where, there were hardly any lights, and we just started walking (remember, it was raining like rain that doesn't exist in the states. Our umbrellas were all breaking), after like 5 muddy field´s we finally found a highway and kept on walking. As we walked, there was a huge puddle (pretty much a mini lake) on the side of the street, kind of over flowing on the path that we were walking and all of the sudden a diesel truck passed us and hit the puddle and made a huge wave, it went like above our heads and soaked us completely, we were like´´ RUN RUN RUN´´ and 3 of us ran like crazy and looked behind us and we saw Elder Brown way behind us, trying to run ahead and trying to shield himself with his tiny umbrella and then all of the sudden BOOM BOOM BOOM, 3 more huge diesels passed him and destroyed him with 3 more huge waves, he was completely soaked, it was the funniest thing ever, we were rolling on the ground laughing.

Other than that, a pretty normal week, we´re getting our investigators ready to get married, we´re going to pick up the documents tomorrow and we´re gonna mark the wedding date at the end of this week, so their baptism will probably be in a few weeks, they´re pretty excited for that. Oh yeah, and I did a division in a city called Castro that is about an hour away from Ponta Grossa, so I´ve officially worked in every city in the mission, so that was pretty sweet.

But I´m outta time, boa semana pra todos, and I´ll talk to you guys later!

Elder Trevisanut

Sunday, June 23, 2013

Ponta Grossa - New Town, More Miracles

Tudo bem!!
One more great week, little time to write. Ponta Grossa is great, in spite of it being a city with TONS of hills to climb, I´m getting needed exercise, so that´s good. In response to the questions, yeah Ponta Grossa is known for being the city that baptizes most in the mission, so we´ll see how it goes. There are 2 zones here, and my zone is for sure the one that usually baptizes less than the other zone, and when I got here, the zone was pretty dead, so it´ll definitely be another resurrection transfer. I´m used to it by now, all of my areas and zones that I´ve passed through have been pretty much dead when I got there, and I´ve always left them much better than when I got there, so this´ll be probably the same case. But for sure there will be tons of miracles waiting for us here, we´ve already seen a bunch. We have a couple that are preparing for baptism, they just need to get married, so we´re running around getting all the documents, and then they´ll be baptized. We also found a family of less actives that are ready to come back to church, they just needed to be invited. They have a few kids that haven´t been baptized yet, so we´ll for sure be completing their family in a few weeks. My apartment is awesome, we live in a huge complex that has like 35 buildings so that´s been cool.

Other than that, it´s been a great week. We got a new companion also. Elder Kakuschke was in an area in our zone, and his companion went home early, so he´ll be with us for a while until president finds him a new companion, he´s got about 8 months on the mission, so he´s getting some early Zone Leader training. He´s from Wisconsin and is super cool.

But other than that, I gotta go, pray that my shoes hold up for 2 and a half more months!! After a year and 9 months, they´re starting to turn un wearable, and here in the hills of Ponta Grossa they are getting pretty shredded( for the record: until now, I´ve never seen any pair of shoes last 1 year and 9 months, so it´s been impressive), and pray that the rain stops so we can work more efectively!!!!!
Até mais!
Elder Trevisanut

Monday, June 10, 2013

A Successful Missionary Here in This Part of the Lord´s Vineyard

Boa Tarrrrrde todo mundo!

How´s everyone doing? Thanks for the email, it´s good to hear that things are going well there back in the states and that everyone´s well and happy.

I´m doing great here, we had another successful week here in Vila Oficinas, our zone had 6 baptisms ready for Sunday, including one in my area, but unfortunately 2 baptisms fell through because of emergencies de saude and some other things. Unfortunately, Rafael who was ready for baptism on Sunday, had an emergency and wasn´t able to be baptized, so he´ll be baptized next week, he´s a man from another state in the North of brasil who is here in curitiba working to sustain his family there in the north, and soon his family will come down here to Curitiba and for sure will be baptized as well. Sad as it is to say, my only chance for baptism in Vila Oficinas fell through, cause I was also transfered today. I have thought a whole lot over the past few months that I have been in Vila Oficinas about what success really is to a missionary.

Over the past few months, I have really given it my all as a missionary and as a leader here in Zona Tarumã, I have worked tirelessly to help my area grow, to help all of the missionaries in my zone have as much success as possible, and to serve everyone around me. When I got here, I was a new, wide-eyed zone leader, trying my best to be perfect in everything, and applying everything that I´ve learned throughout my mission to my work.

As the time went on and my new companion, Elder Barkdull got here, and we worked for every second of every day finding and teaching new people always, running around like crazy trying to have tons of success, and when he was transferred and I had to train a new zone leader, Elder de Magalhães, we kept on going with the same pace, teaching, marking baptism dates, interviews every day in our zone, sleeping in our missionary clothes because of lack of time and energy, and really giving it our all, and at the end of all of this, 0 baptisms. Tons of missionaries in our zone weren't working half as much as we were, and were baptizing like crazy, and I started to to think, ´What am I doing wrong?? I´m doing all that I can, and I´m not having any success, why is this happening? Why are lazy missionaries baptizing big families, why are miracles being given to us and then taken away from us just like that, why is it so hard??´´ I have to admit, I could not find the answer for this problem and I was starting to get really discouraged. But if I learned one thing in this time as a zone leader here in Vla Oficinas, it´s that baptism doesn´t necessarily mean success as a missionary. It´s great to baptize, it´s our purpose to baptize, but if we don´t baptize, it doesn´t necessarily mean that we´re failures as missionaries. I can honestly say that I gave it my ALL in these past months, and I can honestly say that I served with all my heart, might, mind and strength, and that I have grown more personally and spiritually than any other time in my mission or life.

As I walked through my area last night saying bye to all the people that  I was able to help, this phrase in Preach My Gospel was ringing through my head :´´ If you can feel the spirit working within you and in your investigators, you can be sure that you are a successful missionary.´´ And with every person that I said bye and with every person that thanked me with all their heart for the changes I have helped them make in their lives forever, I could feel like I have been a successful missionary here in this part of the Lord´s vineyard. It was a great feeling.

But as for the transfer, I was transferred to Ponta Grossa, in Ala 2 (2nd Ward), so after a year and a few months in the City, I´m finally back in the country (more or less it´s a city with 80,000 people) !!! It´s kind of an interesting feeling to finish my mission close to where I started, and I´m super excited to be here. I´m continuing as Zone Leader and my zone is about the same size, so I´m super excited to make this zone the best zone in the mission!!! My companion's name is Elder Rios, and he´s from the Bahia, a state in the north of brasil, we´re both excited to be here!!

But I gotta go, time ran out!!! Tchau!

Elder Trevisanut

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

The Most Baptisms in the Whole Mission!!

Ola familía,

One more great week of missionary work, and little time to write. We had zone leader council this week, and our zone had the most baptisms in the whole mission!!!! We were pretty excited about that, and really proud of our missionaries. It was the last coucil of president cordon, so that was kinda sad too.

Other than that, just one more week of work.

The other day we were by the bus station here in our area and a woman that I recognized came up to us and said, ´´Remember me?´´ At first I didn´t remember but after a second I recognized her as Jennifer´s mom. I don´t know if you guys remember Jennifer, who we taught and baptised last year in Bom Pastor, but turns out her mom, stepfather and sister moved to our area here in Vila Oficinas, and she told us that she wanted us to come over and visit them. We stopped by on Thursday and taught them about the restoration, it was a great lesson, they want us to keep stopping by and it was awesome because Jennifer was there also, and she was able to bear her testimony of what we taught and about the truthfulness of the gospel. It was awesome, and for sure one of the most spiritual lessons of my mission. It was great to talk to her and see how much she has grown after almost a year in the gospel. It´s really interesting how the Lord works and how he puts certain people in your path, it´s easy to see who you were sent to teach and help here on the mission.

But other than that, I gotta go, I´m outta time, see you all later!!

Elder Trevisanut