Monday, January 30, 2012

Happy Transfers!

Hello everybody!

So, surprise! Transfers were this week (today) so now Dad knows where that falls! Elder Baltazar went somewhere else to be an LZ and I left too. Now I´m in Pacajus, about an hour outside of Fortaleza and I´m companions with Elder Johnny. Don´t let the name fool you, he is from Ribeiro Preto (São Paulo) and thank goodness he is Cornthiano too! He has 10 months out in the field, and our area is HUGE. We are in Pacajus 1 (or A) and it is about half of a city of 50,000, so its pretty big.

Anyways, this week... I don´t even remember what happened this week! I think it was pretty much normal as in we taught the usual people more and more lessons, just that it got overshadowed by leaving the area and coming to a new one.

This week, pretty much all that I remember is the following.

We taught Erick, Erika, Francisco and Sandra all the lessons, and Erika will be baptized this week. We found this family through soccer, and we would have baptized her on Sunday, but she drank coffee on friday night, so we had to wait. We ended up leaving about 5 other people for the next Elders to baptize, Elder Baltazar wasn´t excited about that. We had quite a bit of troubles in that area, but the last two weeks went pretty well for us.

We visited Dona Bia, Carlos and Iago a bunch too. We just stop by to make sure everything is good (Since we baptized Carlos) and we usually just talk a bit with Iago, he is 16, and Dona Bia just makes us food.
Definitely will miss them a lot.

On Friday, we did splits again with Elder Heath, and I went in his area, and we ended up going around the whole day with a guy named Toni who is leaving on his mission here in about 2 weeks. It reminded me of my time before the mission. But it was fun, we taught a bunch but he told us a cool experience. So he was waiting for us, thinking that he wouldn´t go with us, and then we showed up. When we showed up he thought to himself ´´Só vai´´ or ´´Just go!´´. I thought about how true that is with things in the church. We just don´t want to do things sometimes, but we should just suck it up and go to it. That is especially true here on the mission. Its hard to get motivated and go sometimes, but in the end, you just have to get up and go!

That night, we got the call on transfers (Elder Baltazar had been called the night before and knew that he was leaving) so I was just waiting to hear who my new companion would be. I was really surprised to hear that I would be going to Pacajus. All I knew about it was that it was about an hour into the interior! The rest of the week, we passed by investigators and members and talked, taught and said our goodbyes. The ward about cried when we left, since we were their first missionaries just for them, and we were both leaving.

On Sunday, Elder Baltazar gave a talk on the importance of missionary work, and he said ´´Awesome, now that I´m leaving, I´ll be able to straight up tell these people what they need to be doing that they haven´t been doing!´´ The word he used was ´´Quemar´´ which means ´to burn´. After church we said our goodbyes, and I almost got bitten by a snake. One of the young women that we got references from was saying goodbye and tried to give me a hug. I literally had to stop her and tell her that wasn´t allowed hahahaha. The best part is, she said ´´oops, I forgot!´´ and then went and did the same thing to Elder Baltazar. Its funny how different the members are with missionaries here!

So today, we got up early, and finished packing our stuff, and headed to the mission office. We talked with all the other missionaries for a bit, and I met Elder Johnny and we headed out. We had to take a taxi to the terminal, and then a bus to Pacajus, then walk to our house. We got there about 2:30 in the afternoon. After that, we just relaxed until Elder Smith and Batista got here, then we went to go use the internet! Elder Smith was in my group in the CTM, so we´re excited to be living in the same house.

I have no idea what we are going to do for the rest of today or any of that, so I´ll have to fill you in on that next week!

That´s really all I got now, so I´ll close with that!

Love you all!

Elder Cornwell

Monday, January 23, 2012

A Chuva Chegou!

Hello everybody!

So weatherwise, this week has been great/horrible. In the mornings, it has been raining just about everyday and a good amount too. It stays overcast until about 3, and then its like I'm walking in a hot tub. It is soooo humid... its just miserable! But then at night, it gets pretty cool again... which I like!

So this week wasn't super eventful again. Lots of walking and beginning to teach people... so I guess I'll just skip t the good parts.

So, one of those kids we taught at the church invited us to teach his family, so we went and taught them (obviously). The father was very excited... he kept on saying "up to this point, I've been catholic, but I will go to church from here on out!. We taught him with the Bishop and as we were leaving the Bishop said "Until next time!" and he replied "No, until Sunday!" The only problem is he works nights every other day, so he can only come to church every other week, and this week was his work day. But this kid has a sister, who is 16, and she had already gone to church a few times somewhere else in the city, but when she went back home she kept going with her family. She came to church on sunday and LOVED it. She liked it when she went before, but she was excited this time even more. She said her Dad would love it, so we can't wait!

On Friday night, we ran into someone on the street who had been at a member's house for lunch on time. She was with a friend and they invited us in to teach. We taught them all together and she said that when we went to lunch at that members hous, she no longer had the desire to attend her church. We had left a Book of Mormon for her with the member, but we never had an opportunity to contact her. Anyways, afterwards, she had us go to her house and teach her husband and daughter. They were so excited about it, especially the husband. He said he had gone to other churches, but the way the people were and how church was, he didn't like. So we taught them all together again, and invited them to church. So Sunday comes and they are all there together (they went with that member) and the husband was sitting there in Priesthood with a huge grin on his face. They loved all the learning and the talks and such. We were really lucky to find contact with her again.

Heres a bit of funniness for you. So, there were two girls who graduated from primary up to young women. Yesterday, the young women president (she and her husband are like our best friends) found out that one of the girls hadn't been baptised. She yanked us over and introduced her saying "This is Lara. She has been going to church for FOUR years and just graduated from Primary. And she hasn't been baptized yet!" Her siblings have all been baptised and come to church every sunday, but she says she just doesn't want to. We're going to talk to her more this week, but Elder Baltazar was beside himself because we have had an investigator at church this whole time. Go figure!

So that was the major goings ons of this week. Our appliances and stuff for the new house haven't goten here yet, so we are going to some member's houses today to cook/socialize and whatnot.

Sorry this letter is short, but hopefully its sweet enough! I love you all and have a good week!

Love Elder Cornwell

P.S. How is the snow back home? It's so hot here, I was thinking about snow, but my thoughts melted. I guess I'll have to wait a bit before I experience it again!

Bruce asked Kyle: Lots of people have been asking about you. They usually say, "what do you here from Kyle?" So give me a line or two to use on them.

Kyle answered: If only I had a postcard pointing at the temperature saying its 85 degrees and 66% humidity! You can tell them I´m sweating from working in the vineyard ;)

Monday, January 16, 2012

Here We Go Again!

Hello everybody!

So this keyboard is really hard to type on, I´ll just say that right now. But it is about 4 o´clock right now and so far, I´ve had an AWESOME p-day, but I´ll talk about that more later.

So, this week was probably the best I´ve had on the mission and I´ll just go ahead and credit it to the help we got from the member´s (hint hint). We moved into our new house this week, but our furniture and appliances haven´t showed up yet, so we´ve been living in the stone age! But it is really nice. it was funny because all of our stuff was brought over in a little tiny truck piled about 8 feet high. I have a picture (but no way to send it... pois é).

Tuesday, we had interviews with the President. We waited about 4 hours until it was our turn, and he had been taking a while with the other elders. So Elder Baltazar went in and i was helping the secretaries out (because I was bored out of my mind!) and about 5 minutes after he went in, he came back out. He called me in, we chatted for a bit and he said ´´Well, I don´t have any questions for you, so if you don´t have any questions could you offer a prayer?´´ I won´t lie, I felt cheated! But then again, interviews aren´t really to chat for 30 minutes, so I counted my blessings for the other 25 minutes. After, we went to Burger King and headed back to our area. We had the baptismal interview for Carlos about an hour after we got back. Theres a cool story that goes with this too!

So, Carlos went to church on Sunday and really enjoyed it, and he had already gone a few times, so he could be baptised if he wanted. We set an appointment for the interview and headed on our way. During the day of the interview, he was having some doubts and he was just talking to himself, thinking what he would do. He at first thought he would just go down the street and forget about being baptised, but he thought about it more, and decided he would sit and wait 15 minutes, and then leave. So he made up his mind and sat down to wait. The instant he sat down, we called out to let him know that we were here. He told the elder interviewing him that he would never leave the church ever because of that.

It was just one of those things where it really wasn´t because of the missionaries that he was baptised. We were just doing what we were supposed to, and the Lord did the rest. It really amazed me. I was blessed with the honor of baptising him the next day. He was the only member of the family not baptised, so I hope they will be ready to go to the temple when the temple is ready for them!

But this week gets better! On Thursday, we set up an appointment with a member to teach some kids at the church before we played soccer. So we prepared the first lesson and we went to go teach them. The member shows up, and he had 7 teenaged boys with him. We were floored. We went in and taught, and every single one of them payed attention the whole time. 7 boys, waiting to play soccer, payed attention to us talk for 30 minutes. We were amazed. Every one of them passed on their addresses for us to talk to their families too. We taught some of them on Saturday and they were all excited about our message. We had five investigators at church on Sunday. We were very happy and the member I think was even happier than we were!

Today was awesome too! We went to the city center, which is actually by the beach. There is a big shopping center there, and we walked around for about 3 hours just looking at all the things they had (Think downtown el Paso times 10). Afterwards, we ate at a really good self service restaurant, and on our way back, we went to a HUGE Cathedral. It was all white on the inside and had the stained glass and everything. I took pictures and everything, but I´ll show them to you later. I ended up buying a Corinthians Jersey for R$15. It is super awesome! Its white with a red dragon and yeah... I´m excited about it!

All in all, that was our week. Lots of fun and lots of hard work! But that´s all I have today!

Vós amo muito! Sempre se lembre que Deus nos ama mais do que qual quer pessoa no mundo! Ou seja, como a gente fala aqui, Deus é fiel!

Com um embração,
Elder Cornwell.

Monday, January 9, 2012

I can´t remember if this week was busy or not...

Hello again!

So this week was a different week again. We had a bunch of things that weren't holidays kind of get in the way of the work, but all in all the week went on just normal! Also, I managed to borrow a card reader from another elder for today, so I sent some pictures of my area and other goings-on.

There weren’t any events of real significance this week. It was just the normal work work work. We have 4 investigators who are coming along, so I've taught the "hard" lessons a bunch of times (tithing, word of wisdom and chastity). It wasn't that rough for me because we had 2 straight weeks of nothing and I just wanted to get back in it. So this week was a lot better because we actually got a chance to talk to people!

On Thursday we had splits because of some training for the leaders, so Elder Heath and I had both of our areas (which was a lot of walking). We had lunch in his area, then went home and studied, back to my area, taught Aline and Silvana some commandments, then back to his area to teach a couple who had been together for 14 years but not married. We taught them chastity and it was funny because the wife was joking around and the husband was seemingly uncomfortable with her doing that. He didn't want to get married because "everyone gets married and divorced, I don't want to break apart" like marriage is going to make them separate. I said "You've been together for 14 years already... don't you think your relationship would last a lot longer with the promised blessings of marriage?" They didn't respond hehehe.

On Saturday we went to a member's house for lunch, but on the way we passed through the feira, which is basically a big outdoor market. It was cool to walk through because it was all fake stuff and fresh fruit. It was the kind of thing mom would LOVE. It was kind of like in El Paso, but they weren’t stores, just little stands. I ended up buying a Fortaleza jersey for R$10 or like $6... score! Definitely not an original, but I don’t care! They have a big central market here that we will probably go to next week that is all stores and stuff. There is just always something going on in this town.

The only other thing to really happen was Sunday, we brought a less active member and her husband to church, and afterwards her husband really liked it. It turns out he has already been before, so we started going forward with preparing for baptism. He is really excited about it. His family was baptised but he wasn’t, so it’s a cool chance for us. It was funny, in sacrament meeting, we were sitting there and Elder Baltazar tapped me on the shoulder and pointed to them. I looked over and he had a package of cookies and offered some to us with a big smile. It made me chuckle.

So that's really all I have this week! Hope you like the pictures I attached!

Love you all!

Elder Cornwell

P.S. Congrats to Drew and Chrissy for the arrival of Mason! Now Drew can torment someone other than me! Also for Mike, STEELERS LOST! PPPBBBBBBBLHLHLHLLTTLHLTHT ;)

Monday, January 2, 2012

Slow Week; Sick Missionary

So we got another uneventful week. Everyone in my area either left town or was in a state of drunkenness for about a week straight... that´s my mission! Also, my companion took it upon himself to share everything within the companionship so low and behold, I have a cold! Who would´ve known that was possible here? Its been 90 degrees everyday practically... which here is WAY hotter than 85.

This week was just slow in general. We went by member´s and investigator´s houses just hoping that someone was home so we would have 40 minutes less of wandering around the town. The only people we visited frequently were Aline and Aldênia. They´re both building a strong foundation with their testimonies, but still have some fears about baptism, so we´re just going one step at a time.

We are also teaching this family (Mom Dad and 2 daughters) and the two girls practically eat out of my palm. Its just ridiculous. Elder Baltazar will talk and invite them to do things and they will just be like ´eeeh, sure.´ But whenever I talk or invite them to do things, they are just straight smiles and giggling and they say they will do anything I ask. Saturday night, we were inviting EVERYONE to go to church and we stopped by there. Elder Baltazar invited them to Church and they thought it was kind of early and I said ´´Só acorda um pouco cedo, e nós vamos lá!´´ Which is basically ´´Get up early then you lazy bums!´´. They went for it. Of course they didn´t go to church, so I think that whole admiration thing won´t be a problem when it comes to joining the church.

Other than that, New Years, we stayed up and made food, and ate until midnight. Made noise and whatnot, then went to bed. It was LOUD because everyone was doing the same kind of fireworks (not even colored!).

In reality, that was my week. Nothing really of note. Also, I´m sick and have no desire to think at the moment.

Love you all!

Elder Cornwell.