I am still here in Jd. Campinas and the work is going well...well that is when we can work. We had to stay inside two days this week due to the World Cup. Brazil keeps winning, and they have a game this Friday too. Our Brazililan companions get really trunkie during the games, and they are praying that they will be allowed to watch the Finals of the World Cup because they say that it is sacred for Brazilians. Other than that, we are still teaching some cool people and trying to work with the youth here because they are so awesome here.
One night this week we were waiting outside of the chapel because no one had keys to the building. Bishop whipped out some pass-along cards and we split up with the youth to invite people to church and offer pass-along cards. It was so cute! There was like no one in the streets, but the youth would go in like a pack of 6 and run down the one person in the street. I´m pretty sure it was the most effective contacting because they could stop everyone. 6 youth would surround the person like every time, and they would all introduce themselves. It was adorable! My favorite was the bishop´s 10 year old son; he would go up to people and say something like ``I know that this church is true. I feel it in my heart every time I go on Sundays. Here is a card. You can call this number and get a Book of Mormon--another testament of Jesus Christ. You can come any Sunday; you will be received really well there.`` Ah it was so cute! All the youth--recent converts, investigators, etc. all were super pumped.
Then the next day was the ward activity ``Hot Dog Night.`` We invited Rosalia and Valmir (our investigators who are an older couple with no children). We stopped by a few hours before the activity to also invite them to a baptism that was going to be right before the activity. They said they would come. I was a little skeptical because they hadn´t been to church yet and we were asking them to go by themselves(we weren´t going to pick them up). We got to the church for the baptism, and I had a feeling that we should unlock the gate for the parking lot in case they actually came (they have a car which is rare). Minutes later, they walked in and I almost died. SO happy. They were all dressed up. Ah it was just so cute. The baptism was cool and Rosalia is really enjoying all the singing we do. Valmir made some friends who also love soccer (Valmir had expressed to us earlier that it´s hard to make friends when you´re old, and I was like ´´not here`--the ward is so great). Anyway, next was the hot dog activity and the Relief Society room was packed! It was epic. By the end of the night, our investigators were so happy and telling us that they would be at church the next Sunday! Activities are so important, especially for missionaries. It helps our investigators so much to feel like they are a part of a family. It´s pretty sweet to see them getting integrated into the ward.
Rosalia still has some doubts because she was raised Catholic and doesn´t have too much of a desire to get baptized. We did have a really good lesson though with them and a recent convert, Renato. Renato is pretty shy, but when we were trying to resolve her doubts about baptism, Renato shared his testimony. He opened up his Book of Mormon to 3 Nephi 27:8 where Jesus says, ``And how be it my church save it be called in my name? For if a church be called in Moses’ name then it be Moses’ church; or if it be called in the name of a man then it be the church of a man; but if it be called in my name then it is my church, if it so be that they are built upon my gospel.``
He is really soft-spoken but his testimony brought the Spirit so strongly. He testified that this Church really is the church of Jesus Christ. It literally is His Church. It was so simple, but so powerful.
I know a lot of people think that it´s weird for missionaries to prosylete--for example, yesterday I talked to a very hostile man who really hated Americans and said some choice words(Sister Salles told me after) about us as missionaries. Knocking doors, talking to people on the street, etc. seems strange to a lot of people in relation to religion, but our message is just that important that we have to share it in whatever way we can. This really is The Church of Jesus Christ.
On Sunday, we had ward conference. The youth were going to perform two musical numbers. Jennifer, our 14 year old investigator, really wanted to participate because she has really enjoyed being a part of the youth choir and the youth activities like seminary in the ward. We saw her in passing before our gospel principles class, and I noticed that she looked sad--you know when someone has tears in their eyes. She said she was fine, so we let it go. As we entered gospel principles and sang a hymn, I had a feeling that we should go talk to Jennifer. I told Sister Salles and we went to go find her. After some prying, she told us that she wasn´t going to sing because she didn´t bring the right clothes. I looked at Sister Salles and we decided to help a sista out. We ran home and got some options for her. She ended up singing in their choir and it was beautiful. They sang ``Come Thou Fount of Every Blessing`` in Portuguese and ``Joseph Smith´s First Prayer`` in Portuguese but to the tune of ``If You Could Hie to Kolob.`` wow it was so good. This ward is so cool. I want to stay here my whole mission!
happy 4th of July! love you!
Sister Sadie Bledsoe