Monday, December 15, 2014

66 weeks- Mission Christmas Conference

*****had to forward this to myself (we are implementing a new email and when you delete on your phone it's goes it your that trash and no one else can see it) anywho we are learning but Joe read this and deleted it before I could post so I had to forward it from his phone trash to my other acct....that was a long story just to explain why the blog post looks "skinny". lol  Merry Christmas everyone.  Now into elder Sanderson's letter******

Sounds like a fairly uneventful trip to the Big City! It has been raining like crazy here too! It is really getting into the rainy season, so when it rains, it POURS. It rained for about 15 hours the other day without stopping. We quickly found out that our ceiling has holes in it, and were running around trying to get all the water out. My companion's bed got wet, so he had to sleep in my hammock for a few days, and we just had a bit of a challenge getting all of the water out. The good news, it only happened one more time after that! We are in the process of finding a better house where the four missionaries in the city can stay together. 

The week was crazy! We did so much work in our new area and also travelled to Manaus for the Christmas conference. We found a lot of new investigators and have the members of our ward continuously helping us to find more people to teach! It is great to see how open people are to hearing a message about Jesus Christ during the Christmas season =) They are just letting us in and inviting us back. We also had a baptism this week =) The little girl has parents who were baptized a few months ago, but they still hadn't baptized her because they have kind of stopped coming to church. So we stopped by and asked when she wanted to get baptized and she said, "Saturday," so we planned the whole thing out and had a great baptism =) We are planning to have another one this week too with lots more to follow!

My most spiritual moment and my funniest moment from this week have to be the Mission Christmas Conference =) It was amazing! We got to go to Manaus and spend time with about 180 of the 222 missionaries that we have in the Brazil Manaus Mission. Friends that I haven't seen for 6 or 7 months were there, we took pictures, ate BBQ, listened to testimonies, and had a talent show =) The talent show was definitely the funniest part because everyone had about 3 days to practice because of the transfers. It was all thrown together and in the end, there was singing, dancing, skits, and the MC doing stand up comedy. We also got to watch a video full of pictures and videos from the mission in 2014. I was happy to see I was in a few of them, even if my camera has been having it's problems =) 

We also had Stake Conference this week! It was broadcast to all of Brazil from Salt Lake City and had two members of the 70 speak, the 2nd Councilor in the General YW Presidency, and Elder Cook of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles all speak to us! The talks were all spoken in Portuguese except for Elder Cook because the others were either Brazilian or have served missions in Brazil. It was great and we learned a lot. The one thing that seemed to be talked about the most was obedience and holding to the Iron Rod every single day. We can't let go for even a second because we could then get lost. They also said that the Iron Rod that we have in our lives is found in the scriptures. They won't lead us astray and we have to study them every day if we want to stay on the path. It was great to hear the messages and promises that we have because of the scriptures.

Also, I encourage everyone to read "Come let us Adore Him" by Elder Bruce D. Porter of the Sevent in the December 2013 Liahona. It was a great message, and I have pondered it a lot this week. I used it in many of our lessons as well. I won't say what it's about because I want everyone to find out for themselves =) 

Other than that, the week was very relaxed. We just worked and worked and worked! We realized today that we call home next week! That is crazy!!!! We are hoping and praying that everything will work out so we can call home without problems. The internet in our city isn't very good, so maybe say a prayer and fast that it will work out on Christmas. I'm going to fast several times this week and next =) 

Love you guys and miss you all! Thank you for ALL of the pictures! I think the Christmas card looked great!

Love you all!

Elder Sanderson

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