Tuesday, April 8, 2014

30 weeks -tons of pictures!

Hey there my awesome family! 

Thanks for all of the updates! Make sure to tell Ty and Heather that I said "Para Bems" (Pah-duh Banes) and to give Taeven a hug for me! That is crazy about all of the rain for the races, guess I'm not missing much! GO NATS!!!

I wish I could say that I learned a ton of stuff from conference, but we DIDNT HAVE IT IN ENGLISH. The stake decided not to prepare for that and so me and 10 or so other Americans were just kind of stuck there with very basic understandings of Portuguese. I honestly didn't understand very much and look forward to reading/listening to the talks on LDS.org. The worst part about conference in Port. instead of English is that you don't hear their voices. My heart really does go out to the rest of the world because they will always hear translators. I know the Spirit and messages will be the same for all, but I am ever grateful for the blessing that I have been given by being able to speak English. 
Conference weekend was AWESOME though! I didn't do anything super cool except for two things:

1. I TOURED the World Cup Stadium in Manaus! I had the opportunity to touch the field before any other players in the entire world! WEe got an all-access tour from a member who knows a guy. Don't worry, I have a million pictures! We had so much fun and that was probably the greatest moment outside of missionary work in my entire mission!

2. Had my first baptism in Brazil! It was actually two baptisms because the Sisters in our Zone had a baptism that night too and so they let me baptize him on Sunday after conference. It was so cool to realize that I got to baptize someone on the Churc's birthday after an amazing weekend of Conference! Blessings from above!

My new area is in Porto Velho, a city down south. It's freaking hot, and I am now officially in the Jungle. We are in a city, but the city is in the middle of the jungle. I was talking with my new companion (an American) and asked him different things about the area. He said that our area is really far away from our house. I said that's not a problem because I'm used to it (our last house was 45 minutes away from our area when we walked). He laughed at that and said that our area is a 10 hour bus-ride from our house. I guess we'll just stay in the town for a few days then return a few days later, not exactly sure how it works. We also get to baptize in the river here! Can't wait for that! 
Another interesting thing abou this assignment is that it's another "special assignment" from President Klein. My companion has been out 21 months and is an AP. Usually, APs serve together with other APs, but this is a special situation. Nobody is exactly sure why, and it usually doesn't happen at all, but I always have to be different it seems =p The Elders that I talked to about it are all saying that it's to prep me for leadership, but I honestly have no idea. I'm perfectly happy just being a missionary and am really looking forward to this area!

Not too much else to report on, the flight here was 2 ours and I felt kind of classy for some reason haha. The plane had 17 rows and was two by two. All the missionaries got to sit together and the food was pretty good too! I tried a really good fruit the other day called cacau, you just pick it off the tree and eat it, It had a lot of acid and was really sour, but still really good!

Have a great week! Love and miss you guys!

Elder Sanderson

Again we emailed back and forth for a few minutes.  I asked him how he was feeling if he was still doing all or if he had been sick- He shared the following:

Feeling good, last week, I had a really sharp pain in my chest whenever I would be hunched over (it's hard to describe) like when I was praying on my bed at night or if i was resting my head on my desk. The pain only happened when I tried to straighten back up though. It only happened three times, but I decided to call Sister Klein about it. She told me to stretch, drink water, and drink more water. At least 4 liters a day. I did that and haven1t felt the pain again. She said it was probably just a gas in my chest. It was the coolest thing though because when she saw me at conference (she's only me me once) she immediately asked how I was and about the pain in my chest. I also had a really cool experience with this experience:

I wasn't very happy when she told me to simply stretch and drink water. That's exactly what my last mission mom would have said. I thought it wasn't that simple and I guess was looking to going to the hospital or something. I did what she had told me, but not with a whole lot of faith, and kind of grudgingly. After, I went back to studying my scriptures for the rest of personal study. As i was reading, I realized that I was doing exactly what one of the lepers in the Bible did. Christ told the man to go and wash (7?) times in the sea if he wanted to be rid of his sickness. The man thought that such a simple thing was crazy and wouldn't fix it, so he left. After leaving, one of his servants asked why his master wouldn't do what the Savior said just because it was simple. The servant asked if the master would have done something grand and amazing if the Savior had asked him to do that. The master said that he would have, but then realized how foolish it was and went and was healed after listening to the Savior. 

Sometimes, we want our problems fixed in grand and marvelous ways because we know that is what our Heavenly Father can do. But in all honesty, it's the small and simple things that make this Gospel what it is. As a missionary, we teach 5 basic things: Faith, Repentance, Baptism, Holy Ghost, Endure to the End. It doesn't take very much for a miracle to happen. I definitely learned the importance of the basics!

****I have the best missionary ever!!!***

And now for the 28 pics he sent!!  
He said this fruit is delish. It is called cacao.  (Americans call it dragon fruit right?)
Holding a baby turtle
Part of his area when he was in Manaus 
The World Cup Stadium
And there he is right on the field!  :)
His favorite part- walking out of the players tunnel. SO COOL!!! 
Another shot of the stadium 
The group 
Such a cool experience 
The players bench 
Players tunnel again. 
The outside of the stadium

Look at that handsome face!  :) 

One of the guys he baptized. 

His companion and the sisters and the guys he baptized. 
Look how tan he is getting!  He is my little brown brazillian boy! 
Love pics with his name tag in them. 
Out the window of the plane -that might be part of the meeting of the waters.
His new area I tbink....he said he is really in the jungle now!  Manaus is surrounded by jungle too but it is a huge city.  His new city is much smaller.  
Might be meeting of the waters again hard to tell when i am posting from my phone :)

That is his new city Porto Velho
One more pic. I told him his companion looked like he was tall!  He was 6'5!  

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