Wednesday, June 24, 2015

92 weeks -baptism with rain water

It's only seven more weeks? Haha just kidding, I can't believe it either! I'm excited! I'm excited to be home and excited to be able to finish my mission strong. That's exactly what we're doing here =) 
We had a great baptism yesterday! It was raining so hard that the power went out. As such, the font couldn't be filled and we were in a bit of a pickle. We decided to put 6 buckets out in the rain and hope for the best. Afterwards, we used these buckets to fill the font up to about my knees. We got in the water and had to get on our knees for me to be baptized. It was a baptism I will never forget. He left the water with tears in his eyes and just seemed to light up with the Holy Ghost. I can now say that I've baptized someone with rain water =)

Tell Joe I said happy father's day and happy aniversary to you both. I don't even remember when American holidays are anymore...oh well haha. I'm grateful he's been around for so long too. Tell Haylee that I would love to go to the farm with her. I am loving the mission and loving how hard we're working, but man does it make you tired. I'm not as tired as I was with Elder Ribeiro (my "son") because Elder Salas has way more time in the mission than he did, so I don't have to micromanage. Elder Salas actually goes home in 7 days (not weeks), so I'll be getting a new companion next week! Lots of areas in the mission are going to shut because we don't have enough missionaries. We'll see if I get to stay in an area that stays open. 
Other than that, the week was really uneventful. We're going to try and get a lot of work done this week, but we are going to have lots of meetings to attend as well.It should go by fast, but hopefully not too fast =p

Love you all!
Elder Sanderson

Monday, June 15, 2015

91 weeks: teaching impolite English

Hey there everyone!

Alright, this email is going to be fast because the power has been out all afternoon and we just got to our emails. We have to run and catch the bus after this, so I'll just give a summary!
Glad that the farm was in good shape and that you guys got to see so much cool stuff there with the Church history. I hope that I get to see it too =) I was glad to hear that my seat is still my seat at the table and expect it as such when I get home. Speaking of which...TWO MONTHS!!!!
I learned this week that you should think before you teach when you are teaching someone your native language. I was at lunch and there was a little girl who is 7 asking me about a million things to say in English: what's that, and that, and that, etc. Her mom got tired of it really quickly and asked me, "Elder Sanderson, how do you say be quiet?" I didn't pause to translate in a polite way and replied, "shut up." She then looked at her daughter and said, "Hey, shut up." Haha I couldn't help but laugh and realized that "be quiet" probably would have been better. She continued telling her daughter that for the rest of our time there haha.
It's funny that you might have found my potential haha, I think the Sisters in my district tried to find me one too. We were at a wedding the other night and it was a wedding between two wards (my ward and the other ward). We were invited and decided to go so that we could eat some good food. When we were there, the Sisters came up to me with a girl I had met once before. Her name, ironically enough, is Sarah. The Sisters wuickly told me that she is 20 and wants to marry an American. Yes, this was in front of Sarah. But before you judge, Sarah is deaf and so she speaks Portuguese Sign Language. It was quite the neat experience to learn a bunch of words and I still remember most of them. Sarah is really cool and she seemed to like us. I don't plan on talking to her very much, I'm a missionary, so that's not what I do, but maybe I'll get her to friend request me on Facebook. 

One more quick note and then I gotta run. We were on the news today! They shut down a big bus terminal in our area and it has made quite a scene. They are just renovating it, but it is going to take a long time to finish. As a result, the news crews are there to hear peoples' complaints. We were standing at the bus stop today and they did an interview right in front of us, we'll be famous for sure. I was tempted to wave or something, but decided not to. It's probably for the best =)
One more thing! We baptized again this week! Two baptisms, actually! It was great =) They were both really excited and liked it a lot! We should have one more this week if everything goes according to plan!

Love you all,

Elder Sanderson! 

90 weeks: getting through and a chicken story

Hey Everyone! 

What a crazy week it was. I can honestly say that it was the most stressful week of my mission. However, with all trials come blessings. I was greatly blessed by EVERYTHING that happened last week! Let me give you an idea of what happened: 
Monday, I got Dear Johned, yeah it sucked, but that's how it goes. I was given some amazing support by my buddies here in the mission and also by Heavenly Father. I won't lie, it was a constant struggle to just keep working and try to find the drive to continue. I got sick because of the stress, but knew I couldn't stop. We just kept at it and I tried my best to deal with the emotional, physical, and mental exhaustion. I got on my knees Monday night and I just prayed and prayed and prayed. It was the first time I've talked to Heavenly Father in English in a very long time. I simply talked to Him and trusted in Him. I know He has a plan. I woke up the next day with a smile on my face and worked out even more than I usually do. We also had a service project that helped a lot. It was nothing but manual labor and it felt great to be able to concentrate my energy and my mind on something. 
As the week progressed, I could only feel the love of my Heavenly Father and once again was given and amazing blessing. I found out the next day that Elder Ribeiro would be Emergency Transferred to Acre. I loved Elder Ribeiro, so him leaving wasn't the blessing, but the blessing was my new companion. I gained Elder Salas (from Boilivia) as my companion. He goes home in three weeks. It was a blessing because I had to work really hard to show him the area and try and focus on the work. That is what got me through the week. 
With all of that being said, yes, we did baptize everyone within a quarter mile ******I sent him a funny Napolean Dynamite meme because I am an awesome mom lol 😀*********.    and will continue to do so! We baptized Louis who is 79 years-old! He is half-deaf and I had to use my UFC moves to get him under the water haha. I explained the whole process, but I don't think he quite got it, so I just decided to wing it. He went under finally and came out of the water saying, "Now I'm happy, now I'm happy!" It was one of the more spiritual baptisms of my mission =) We also have baptisms lined up for this week and next week! Just need one for the end of the transfer and we'll be baptizing weekly the rest of the transfer =) 
I also might have received revelation for my work when I get home =) I dreamed the other night that I was an instructor at the MTC in Provo! It was awesome because that means I was teaching Portuguese. I'm going to look into it when I get the chance =) Teaching Portuguese would be awesome for work! 
I also had something happen to me that has never happened in my mission. I had a chicken come flying through a window and land on my head before jumping off. Did you guys see that coming? Neither did I. Haha it was hilarious! We were at lunch sharing the spiritual thought and all of a sudden I hear a cluck, a flapping of wings, and then a chicken jumping off my head! I had my back to the window, so it took me even more off guard haha. We couldn't take anything seriously after that, and I don't think I'll ever forget it. 
Haha, what a week it was =) I am extremely blessed by my family and friends. I can't thank you all enough for the email and promise that I feel great, look great, and am great! Nothing can stop that =) No matter what happens, it all works out in the end. That's exactly what I see, and am already seeing, is happening. 

Love you all! Have a great week! I hope that the Lord blesses you as much as He blesses me =)

Elder Sanderson

89 weeks. Faith.

*****HD had a very rough week this week and I am not going to post his letter.  I knew he would be ok and he knew he would be ok but it was a very hard time for him and it was hard for me not to be able to be there for him.  I still wanted to document this week of his mission.  We emailed a few times back and forth that day towards the end I told him one of my favorite quotes which is "the future is as bright as your faith" which was said by Presdident Thomas S Monson.  His reply made my mom heart happy he said:

"Then I have a very, very bright future ahead of me indeed =)"

I was so thankful to read that. :) love that missionary boy of ours.