So this week pretty much flew by. We´re still having the normal difficulties opening an area from nothing, but we are pretty much going to reverse that this week.
So I´ll just go for the hilights of the week.
Monday night, we had a Stake Missionary Work Meeting with the Stake President. I got some pretty good ideas from the meeting of how to help this area. One bit of advice from the Stake President really applied well. He said that we shouldn´t ask members to be involved in the work, but just involve them. Do little things until they are helping in your work! On Sunday, we had a chance to put that in practice. We had lunch with a member, whose sister is less-active, and a friend of this sister came for lunch as well. Elder Nelson left a message from the Book of Mormon, and then I asked the friend, Nadja, if she had ever had a chance to get to know the church, which she hadn´t. I told her I would lend her a copy of the BoM for a week, and on Saturday, we would come to get it back (buahahaha). Instead of getting her address, we asked if the two sisters could show us where she lives, or even talk about it there. With them knowing, they became a part of our work! It is really difficult to motivate members to ´do our work´ for us, so we just have to be smart about it.
The whole meeting was about involving the members in our work (I wonder why?), including doing integration activities more to animate the members into doing the work. The other big thing he said was to ´think big´. He said small goals only bring small results. Huge goals may not be met, but they bring better results. I remembered the last food drive between Richland and Hanford, where our goal wasn´t to beat the poundage per person, but to beat Richland straight up. So we got even more motivated, and had HUGE results. Imagine if the goal had been ´´Hey, let’s get half the food that Richland gets!´´. The results would have been way different! It all has to do with motivation and what you are willing to work for. If you work for 5 baptisms in a month, you will only get 5 that month.... if you work for 20, you may not get 20, but you will definitely get more than 5! I guess this has become a theme within the church, that we need to do the MOST possible. In our callings, in our study, and in everything we can!
Thursday, we had Zone Conference, which was also awesome (two awesome meetings in one week... whoo!). President Souza defined what we were working towards in ´Real Growth´ which is Faith in Christ, Establishment of the Church and Strengthening Families. There are many ways to do that, but here in Fortaleza, the best way for all of those is teaching with the goal of making a covenant with Christ in Baptism. There is no better way to build faith in Christ, establish the church, our strengthen a family than to live the restored gospel! Sometimes, we have to remind people of that, as well as unite a family in the church, and that is why work with less actives is so important as well. Anything to have more people at church partaking the sacrament is working towards this goal as real growth.
An example of strengthening families that we will try to do this week is with a new convert family. All of the family minus the oldest son are baptised. The only problem is that the son of 15 is baptised in another ward and isn´t going to church with his family, but later in the day. EVERYTHING ABOUT THAT IS COMPLETELY, TOTALLY, WRONG! He is a great young man who really wants to help, but he thinks he has to go to that ward. So we are going to work with him to transfer his records to our ward (where he can do a lot more good). The oldest son, we are going to make a friendship and teach him what his family already learned. That is plan of how to put ´Real Growth´into this family.
In all reality, not a lot happened this week, but we learned plenty of stuff, so it was still pretty good. But that was my week!
Love you all!