Monday, July 11, 2011

Well hello there,

In case you were wondering, yes, it was another incredible week as a missionary.

A quick word on the pictures. [The below captions are part of Sister Cornwall's letter this week though no pictures were attached for them to accompany . ]

1. With Sulamita and Fernanda our last night in Lauro de Freitas. They are darlings.

2./3. Fourth of July: We had a great American day . . . on the Brazilian beach. We drew an American flag, did the Pledge of Allegiance, sang The Star Spangled Banner (and took a pret-ty hilarious video. at least I think it´s funny, though your sense of humor does change a bit as a missionary.) Then we just walked along the beach. From our house it´s about a 15-20 minute walk. Sometimes it´s ridiculous how beautiful it is.

4. This is a little view from our street. We are atop a massive hill, but it makes for a rather pretty view.

5. Yes, we had a baptism! Etainara was a pesqui[sa]dora [researcher, investigator] of the Elders before us. They taught her all the lessons, but the mãe [mother] wouldn´t give the authorization. Nor the dad. But we talked to them both, they seemed excited, we did a revision of the lessons, of the importance and meaning of baptism and Etainara was excited to be baptized. There´s just something about a darling set of Sister missionaries I suppose that warms up the hearts of the people here. Yup.

6. It was actually a really big night with two other baptisms and a bunch of people. Compared to our last baptism, it was quite smooth. This ward is SO supportive, and it makes such a difference. I´m feeling very very grateful for that.

This week was in fact a bit of a step up from last week. Ahem, I would like to announce that we officially have the following in our little abode; two beds, a geladeira, a fogão, a microonda, a machina de lavar, a guarda-roupa, [fridge, stove, microwave, washing machine, wardrobe] and this other thing for the kitchen we haven´t put together yet. Our beds are heaven, and the geladeira keeps our food plenty cold, the microonda has a weird plug so we can´t actually use it yet, we need a hose for the machina de lavar, we´re putting together the guarda roupa today, and the fogão doesn´t have the gas tank hooked up yet. But we´re feeling VERY grateful.

Also, we had miracles occur even on the streets of Brazil. Truly. This past week we had a media reference to seek out in Stella Maris. Last week we spent oh- maybe three hours - looking for his house (it was a little embarrassing) but then we finally found him Tuesday and he is incredible. He was just searching `free scriptures`on the internet and wanted to know more about the Book of Mormon. We went back this week and he had read and prayed and then flipped open the Bible and read in psalms about a restoration. He is so calm about his response that God has told him this church is true! The system of read and pray and God will respond really works my friends. His mom is baptist and we still need to talk to her, but testimony is a precious and powerful thing, and I know that it will all be alright with that boy.

We also had another just - wow - moment this week while we were looking for a contact (we actually spend a good amount of time looking for people´s houses. I rather like it in fact.) and we knock on this door asking about Rafael. He doesn´t live there. But then the woman at the door says - wait, you´re from the Church of Jesus Christ ("Why yes ma´am, we most certainly are," - and this was all in Portuguese, so that´s not even what we said, but that´s what I was thinking, anyway.) She had been baptized but gone inactive two years ago. But the Spirit was telling her she needed to go back to the Church of Jesus Christ (completely true) and she said she was just waiting for a confirmation. Then we knocked on her door. Guys, I´ve heard about stories like these, that they happen, but I think that perhaps I let myself believe that they wouldn´t necessarily happen to me, I don´t know why. But they do. Miracles that slap you in the face happen so often. I don´t know what we´re doing here that merits such miracles, but I´m incredibly grateful. We need to keep working arduously to go find these people that desperately need us.

I gave a quick testimony in Church yesterday and just talked about how we need to share this good news. This Church is one of HAPPINESS. We shared 2 Nefi 2Ç25 a couple of times, and we´re here for alegria [joy]friends. If you´re not happy, you´re not doing something right. I know that our Heavenly Father is watching us and guiding us. If we look for his hand in our lives, I know we´ll see it. I want all of you to know that I am happy doing this work. It´s incredible, and God lives.

Love, Love, Love,

Sister Cornwall

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