What a week. Natal and Ano Novo make the work a bit hard here. It was interesting to see how another country celebrates Christmas and I can report that they drink and party a lot. BUT. It was all good. I really am blessed to be in an area with awesome members that want to have us at their houses and feed us. Yay for food! Our Christmas Eve was good. We went to a member´s house and played Go Fish and watched the Cultural Celebration of the Sao Paulo templo. It was nice to relax and strange to watch the television because we usually avoid that kind of thing. Natal was the best though because I got to skype with you all! Woo! Best thing ever! It was really nice to talk face to face (kinda) and hear answers to questions right off the bat instead of a week later. Other than that my Natal day was pretty much the same as usual. We had an interesting experience. We went to visit one of our investigators with a member and wish her a Feliz Natal and give her a little present we made. She lives with her mom and has a daughter. We were met at the door by her mother. We have seen her mother only few times before this. The next thing we know the mother of our investigator is literally screaming at us and calling us devils and ordering us to leave her house. Yup. So that was fun. It is sad because she said if her daughter gets baptized she will have to leave her house. :( and soo.... We had a mini miracle this week when we were walking in our area. We were on a hill when a young girl came running up to us and said she wanted to go to church with us. It turns out that her father saw us from below and wants his children to be baptized. He is a member but hasn´t gone to church in a while. It was awesome! I love you all. Have a great Ano Novo! Sister Helm
Monday, December 29, 2014
Monday, December 22, 2014
We had a batismo this week! Yay! It was great. Last P day we went to the beach! We can´t touch the sand so it was from some distance but it was still beautiful! I also bought a really cool ring made from a coconut and I am already planning the cool things I will bring home when that time comes. I got a letter from Uncle Peter and it was probs the coolest thing ever so thanks Tio Pedro. I have read it so many times its already falling apart. Natal here is strange because its 4000+ degrees and blinking lights everywhere. Seriously though. Always always sun. The people here tell me that my skin will adjust but I don´t think they actually understand......but I just agree with them because I don´t know how to explain superwhitepersonskinwithsundoesn´twork in portuguese. But. Its all good. So the people here are awesome. They try to speak English to me and its funny because I don´t understand because their accents are so strong. Mostly I just get Good Morning and Tank You! (they can´t pronounce th so its sounds like t) There is one man without fail that speaks spanish to me. Yup. No idea why. Also everyone here thinks I speak German. I don´t, if you were wondering. Yesterday was crazy because we had an investigator at church with all her little nieces and nephews and boy were they a handful. Minha nossa! But the primary program was yesterday and it was beautiful even though it actually sounded terrible but they sing with so much enthusiasm that its impossible to not love them. The kids here are the best btw. Also when Brazilians party they really party. A girl in the ward returned from her mission and we went to the party and minha nossa it was awesome. We had to leave early because it was 9 oclock but they sent us home with platefuls of food. Woo! I am excited for Natal and getting to skype with you all! yay! Feliz Natal to all and don´t forget the Savior and the real reason we celebrate Christmas! Sister Helm
Monday, December 15, 2014
This week was good. We had Conferencia de Natal in Maceio and the entire mission was there! It was so so cool and the food was great and our Presidente and his wife are the best. I got to see Sister Lopez from the MTC and also Elder Trout so that was awesome. Transfers! Ahh! It was super stressful last night because all the other sisters in Eduardo Gomes have been here awhile (including my companion) and so it was probable they´d leave. BUT, we are all staying! Yay!! We get to spend Christmas together and also New Year! We have a baptism this week and two the week after! They are all awesome and it has been great to see them coming closer to their Savior. A story: We were teaching a young mother this week. She has two little girls ages 3 and 1 and she is 20. We were teaching her about the Word of Wisdom and how our body is a temple. She has a belly button piercing and when we told her about our body being a temple she took it out and chucked it as far as she could. It was amazing to see her willingness to keep the commandments.
Today we are going to the beach! Just to look, don´t worry. But I am super duper excited! :) Yesterday we got to go to Grageru and watch the First Presidency Christmas Devotional. It was sooo good even though I didn´t understand everything the speakers said. I did understand the music and they showed a bit of the lights at Temple Square and that was great. I am pretty sure that sobremesa here is the best in the world. You´ll have to look that word up. Anyways, all the sisters were telling me about this one sobremesa that is sooo good because we were going to eat it at one of the members houses for almoco. It turns out that this really good sobremesa is rice and milk. Haha their faces when I told them I´ve been eating this my whole life. Hahahahaha But they usually use condensed milk and it´s even better. Also everyone here loves hot dogs. They are a bit different and they call them cachorro quente which is literally hot dog in portuguese. It is funny because people always ask if we have cachorro quente in the US. haha Also I don´t know what happened this week but I have made huge strides in the language. It is the strangest thing I have ever experienced. I can teach almost fluently and I can speak with the people here with only a little difficulty. I know this is a gift from God and all your prayers. Thank you so much. I´m definitely not fluent yet but I am ten times better than last week. I love you all. I love this work. I love this gospel. Com amor, Sister Helm
Monday, December 8, 2014
Família e amigos! Como vocês estão? This week was pretty uneventful. All normal for the most part. (Nothing is ever completely normal in Brazil) Yesterday we had investigators at church! Not the same as last week unfortunatly but it was still awesome. I am excited to see them progress and come closer to their Savior. We had some crazies this week. People see me from a mile away because I stand out like a the black sheep in a herd here. I can usually see them coming but sometimes they sneak up from behind. Haha. Usually they are drunk and just starting talking to me in rapid Portuguese and say....oh you are americana....blah blah blah. So my companion and i mess with them and I tell them that no, I am Brazilian and I am from Rio Grande do Sul which is a state in the south of Brazil that has a lot of people with whiter skin and they totally go for it. My portuguese is still terrible and I obviously have a super strong accent so when they can´t understand me my companion tells them that they can´t understand because I am from Rio Grande...fun times fun times. But this week was different because I was proposed to. Yup. That was fun. Mosty because he was really drunk and I didn´t know what he said at first but I shook him off by telling him I had a boyfriend waiting for me and then showed him my ring and he took it. Woo. December is the rainy season here and so it will be super hot and sunny and then all of a sudden it´s raining buckets and so that´s fun. Yay! Natal!! Woo for Christmas in Brazil! So many exciting things are happening and it´s 200 degrees and so it doesn´t even feel like Christmas but still woo! I don´t know if you all have heard of He is the Gift but you should totally check it out! It´s all about Christ so it doesn´t get much better than that! :) All the children here are the best. They are all a bit scared of me at first but eventually they think I am the coolest person ever. haha :) We saw a boy this week that looks almost exactly like Zane (except that Zane is not Brazilian) and it was sooo weird. Food´s still great. I have decided my favorite juice is maracujá but if you asked me what it looks like I couldn´t tell you. Also it´s funny because when I first arrived all the ladies in the ward that make us lunch asked me what my favorite food is and I told them lasagna and so it spread and now we have lasagna A LOT. And then it got out my favorite dessert is mousse (which is seriously the best) and now we eat that a lot too (no complaints) and now my favorite juice and so we have that almost every meal. Haha the members here are the best. Welp. Brazil is still exciting. I know this church is true. I love it with all my heart. I know Christ is my Savior and I am so excited we have Christmas to celebrate His birth. I love you all. Thank you for your prayers. Sister Helm
Monday, December 1, 2014
This is an except from a letter wrote to me(her momma). I was asking questions
and this is some of her responses.
They don´t have Thanksgiving here soo......I had Subway and ice cream. I was actually in Maceio getting registered with the police here. I got to be with Sister Lopez from the MTC and it was totally awesome. We really missed each other and it was nice to catch up. We also saw Elder Trout from our district. Also black friday here is called black friday. interesting. Since I was in Maceio during that I got to see a bit of the frenzy. Woop! Maceio is a lot different than our area. a lot. I´m good with everything. I don´t need anything except the gift of tongues and lots of investigators. Some prayers wouldn´t hurt. hahah. :) Yay for baptisms! We went to a batismo of some elders in our district here and it was beautiful and I can´t wait for one of my investigators to be baptized! we found a really awesome man yesterday. Staunch catholic but totally willing to pray about our message and get baptized if he feels it is true. yes! Yes, we live with two other sister. The sister training leaders of our zone actually. Super awesome sisters. i love them all but it´s hard sometimes because they have been on missions for a while and so I feel stupid around them a lot because I never know what´s happening. I´m hoping it will wear off after a while. No, that was a members house....the husband is actually american so thats cool. We eat the same thing pretty much everyday but i havent gotten sick of it yet. I hope I don´t because then it will be not fun to eat at members houses. the food is rice, beans, some sort of salad like lettuce and tomatoes and apples, juice that is absolutely amazing and the desserts I actually don´t know what anything is but it tastes delicious. I don´t know our address. Brazil has weird streets. like in one place there is a street D and a street B and then the numbers don´t go in numerical order....yeah. The baskets are for trash. It doesn´t always work because there is trash everywhere. Yay for open sewers and trash and mangy animals. It smells really nice too...not. haha but it´s all good. My companion is....I´m not quite sure because I can´t talk to her very well. It makes it hard to bond. We are getting along though!
Yup. dois. It´s kind of crazy but there it is. This week was pretty low key. A lot of our appointments fell through and it is only going to get worse as Natal approaches. We´ve been finding a lot of new investigators and we are excited to teach them more about Christ and the love He has for them. Yesterday was crazy though. We were going to pass by an investigator´s house to pick them up for church on the one side of our area. On the way there we called another investigator and reminded them about church that morning. She didn´t want to come so we said we´d come by and get here too. The only problem is that she lives on the completely other side of our area. completely. Like a 45 minute fast walk completely. So, we picked up the first person, dropped him off at church and then headed out to get the other investigator. Church started in 15 minutes but not sacrament but Relief Society and Priesthood and all that. Anywho we were about 3 minutes from her house when her spouse called and said that she already left. woop. So we started walking back and found her on the way. She has two young girls. 1 and 3 i believe and so we hauled those kids and her the 45 minutes to the church. Did I mention that yesterday was also the hottest day I have ever beheld? Yes. of course it was. And so, we finally arrived at church. We found another one of investigators trying to leave but we convinced him to stay. and so then went in and got everyone situated. Minha nossa I was sweating like a stuck hog. BUT we got our investigators to church. Lots and lots and lots of walking later. We went back to the first investigators house after almoco to teach him and his family and found him half drunk outside his house.... :( We tried to explain to him the effects of alchol and all that but to no avail. The cool thing is that he was talking to his neighbor and so we started talking to him. He has probably 50 or so years and is a staunch catholic. We were talking to him about Christ and the Book of Mormon and he wanted to hear more. So we taught him the restoration. He is going to read the Book of Mormon and pray and has a baptimal date set! Woo! When we returned home i discovered I have a wicked sunburn. Super bad. My favorite part is the line from my watch. Yay! Also an awesome blister that takes up all of my little toe. No pain, no gain. haha Anywho, I love this gospel. I love you all. Thank you for everything. Sister Helm