BOM DIA!!!! (bomb-gia)
That's good day in portuguese haha. so the mtc first week has been awesome!! It is such a place of learning! ok but first to answer some questions.
1) st. mary didnt work, i didnt get my leaf :( the took it out hahah but i did get all your letters yesterday including the one from dear elder, so it takes about 6 days for mail to get here.
2) U cant send me packages in the MTC and the adress for when i get out is in all my call packet.
3) My p-day is Wenesday SURPRISE!
4) No sister empy yet... but i imagine ill see her soon, maybe.
5) my return mail takes like a week. so if i get a letter after p-day it might take 3 weeks to get a response even if i am able to wirte back that first p-day so everyone please have pacience.
So I guess ill(I dont have an apostrophe) just start with when i left. The filght to JFK was good and i met up with 6 other missionaries at JFK. All were coming from Provo, some had been there for 8 weeks (im in here for 9 weeks then we go into the field). So this one Elder Sampson was just like speaking Portuguese like it was his job, he is now out in the field he just left yesterday. The flight to Sao Paulo was LONG. I sat next to a native Brazillian he was really cool and could speak english(he actually learned it from missionaries ha). So we talked about a lot of stuff. The first day we got here (the picture you saw was like after no sleep and no shower so really not the best time for a group photo) and it was really just a day to relax and recover.
I met 3 other Elders going to Teresina, we are rooming together; Elder King, Elder Davis, and my companion Elder Cooper. They are all super awesome! The only thing was they all had name tags. They all got theirs with their visas! i was so confused so for the first day i didnt have a name tag and everyone kept asking me in portuguese where it was... i didnt know what they were saying hahah. but i have one now so its all good. the next day we began learning some portuguese, mostly how to pray and pronounce everything. But in this one week i have learned as much portuguese as i did spanish in my first 2 years, of course you guys understand that means i know next to nothing but its still some progress and im pleased with it.
My teacer Irmão (bother) Zamboni (like the ice cleaner) is a BOSS! he is 4 years off his mission and he is such a good teacher it is amazing to see his love for us translated to teaching. We have done mock teaching appointments, ITS SO hard!!! oh my gosh, our teachers play the invesgatior and like they are such good actors its scary... Me and elder cooper keep bombing it, and not being able to teach Simple truths mixed with learning the language has made this first week such a humbling experience.
The Food here is pretty good i have grown to like beans and rice at every meal haha its nice and fills you up. they give fruit at every meal and it's really good.
Whenever i tell people my mission they just say very hot! haha so thats not a good sign, thats literally all i have learned about my mission is that it is the hottest place in Brazil. the weather here is super nice but right now im hot because on p-day they let you out and you can walk around the shops and stuff which is like1000x better then provo because provo you are not allowed outside ever unless your going to the temple. Oh we got to go to the temple this morning, it was so awesome to go through with 80 other missionaries and it was in english so that was really nice.
The MTC is truly amazing, on sunday it was testimony meeting, and man the spirit did not hold back, I cant remember a time when i fet the sprit so strongly. Maybe Testimony meeting at EFY or after youth conference but it was crazy how strong and smart all these guys are. all these missionaries are so awesome and truly called of God, that i know for sure Heavenly Father is looking down and smiling at us becasue we are all so willing to do his work and allign our selves with his will. Even the spirit in this building is amazing, you can truly tell it is a place where god prepares his sons and daughters to learn his gosple and teach his children of Brazil.
Monday we had a devotional by President Evans of the presidency of the 70. His testimony was so powerful, after he taught us for over an hour and kept us engaged the whole time he testified that of the savior that he knew his savior lived, he said Quote: I know my savior lives, it is no longer a matter of faith for me." oh he said that and i just got goose bumps all over my body. i had never hear anyone testify of that. i had felt impressions of the spirit of that when listening to some of the apostles speak, like holland and his talk about the atonement, but it hit me so hard when Elder Evans said it, I know he has seen our lord, and i know that if we are pure in heart just like the scriptures say we may also get to see God, but even if we are not blessed in this life to see him i know that one day i will get to bow my self before him and feel the prints in his hands and his feet i will get to weep at his feet and thank him for the wonderful things he has done in my life.
This week like i said has been truly humbling experience. I have learned that man in nothing... I am nothing. I haved learned that inorder to learn you must rely on the savior and have faith in him. The mix of not knowing how to teach and not knowing portuguese had made this week a monstrous mountain to start climbing. but i know that with your guys support and some miracles from the lord i might leave this MTC with a little understanding of how to speak to this fine chlildern of god and maybe be able to teach them some of the gospel. I love you guys so much! and am sorry i cant write you all i only have 30min and it is not nearly enough time to read and write you all. but i hope i answered the main questions you guys have and if i didnt you can always send it again.
I know this is where the lord wantes me to be, even more so i know this is were the lord wants all his sons ages 19-26 to be. Spreading his glorous news that He loves us, his son died for us, that the same church jesus himself established is once again on the earth, and it was restored by Joseph Smith who was a prophet of God. Today the Lord still speaks to us though the prophets and we have one alive on the earth today. The Book of Mormon is another testament of christ and if you read from it and ask the Lord if it is true he will let you know though the spirit that it is. and why not give it a shot, you dont lose anything by asking.
I love you guys and pray for you daily, I hope you guys can pray for me to learn what to teach and to learn the language, and pray for those that i will teach, that their hearts may be open and that they may be prepared to hear this gospel.
LOVE YOU ALLL!!!