Monday, April 3, 2017

Só Ouro!

“Só Ouro!” is an optimistic phrase that my new companion, Elder Tanus, says often. It means “only gold!” I’ll try to explain everything that happened this week. It was a huge week of my mission and it was “Só ouro!”

On P-Day while we were playing volleyball, Elder McBride called us and told Elder Ward and I part of the transfer. After three great transfers in Patos de Minas I was…transferido!! I’m now in the city I always wanted to serve in: Anapolis. I’ve always had a great desire to serve here ever since I learned that it is the city with the most churches per capita in the world! I’m excited for the challenge of helping people find the Lord’s true and restored church in the midst of hundreds of other honorable yet incomplete ones.

Before I left Patos, E. Ward and I enjoyed our last P-Day together, (He was definitely one of my favorite companions) and we visited José Carlos for the last time. He gave us some incredibly thoughtful gifts (one is for you, Mom and Dad!) and thanked us for our efforts to teach him.  After packing my bags on Tuesday (that was a challenge haha), he took us to the bus station and I was off. E. Ward and E. Yapu will continue teaching José Carlos, and I hope they will baptize him.  He’s one of the greatest friends I’ve found on my mission.

I was actually able to sleep okay on the overnight bus ride to Goiãnia—a huge blessing. In Goiãnia I met up with E. Tanus, and we went straight to Anapolis. He’s from Barra Monsa, Rio de Janeiro (Rio is a state and its capital is the famous Rio that everyone knows), has a little over a year on his mission, and is as excited to work as I am.  I’ll be able to teach him how to be a zone leader and he’ll be able to teach me how to work with members, something he’s had great success with on his mission.  It’s likely that he’ll be my last companion and that the Flamboyant (in Portuguese it’s pronounced ‘Flam-boy-ANT’) Ward in Anapolis will be my last area because after this transfer I’ll be in my last. Nossa!

We got straight to work here in Flamboyant, elders that were here before us left the house totally trashed and we spent the entire first day cleaning. Lovely. At least it’s nice and clean now.

Thursday we went to Goiãnia for the monthly leadership meeting with President and Sister Buhrer. As always, it was excellent. Presidente always focuses on obedience. We reviewed the whole missionary Manual and then talked about the mission’s inspired Pattern of Excellence. The end of the meeting was incredible. He gave us an hour’s worth of loving counsel and transmitted a peace so real it was almost palpable. Eu amo Presidente Buhrer!

We had an effective weekly planning session on Friday. We plan to contact several people from the Area Book and work with member references and families in which not everyone is a member. I usually feel like I’m working diligently if I’m in the sun talking with people on the road and I’m knocking doors all day. However, I realize that working with members is more effective, even it if feels slower. I’m going to try this more effective form of missionary work this transfer. I have faith it will ‘dar certo.’

GENERAL CONFERENCE!!! I’ll get straight to the point…A TEMPLE WAS ANNOUNCED In BRASILIA!!!!! All the members here in central Brasil have been wishing and praying years for this. As soon as ‘Brasilia, Brasil’ left President Monson’s mouth a wave of emotion, of joy and of the Spirit, rushed through the chapel. What an incredible blessing for the Brazilian saints! I’m really happy the temple was announced while I was on my mission here and that it happened while I was serving in the city closest to Brasilia in our mission—Anapolis is just two hours away. Que milagre.

The conference talks were amazing and I learned a ton. I thought about it Saturday night: I have about another 160 General Conferences in my life (unless Jesus returns soon…but even in the millennium there might be General Conference. I hope so!) and I look forward to these several semiannual spiritual feasts . In this conference I loved the focus on Jesus Christ, our Savior, and His perfect love. Que sejomos como Ele e.

As we returned from the chapel Sunday night (last night) I had he desire to mark a baptismal date and prayed that we could do so.  As we tried to contact a member reference who wasn’t home, we knocked the neighbor’s door. A man called Hose Pereira let us in to his humble house. We taught him simply the Restoration, and then, when we invited him to baptism, he accepted. I love being a missionary and having these miraculous experiences! Pedi e recebereis.

Next time I write to you all I’ll be 20 years old! I’m excited to open my birthday package that’s carefully being stored until Friday. Amo vocês!

Elder Anderson
 I'll miss these sweet views! Last P-Day in Patos. It was a great three transfers. And a great time with E. Ward!

 This cracker brand is the name of my next area! 
 Last night at Jose Carlos e Vánia's home.
 At the rodoviária; goodbyes.

 Hello Anápolis! Views from our windows...

 A nice, messy welcome (these pics were actually taken after we had already started was worse). 
We are so excited to clean up this junk.

 Soaking wet after knocking doors while returning from conference Saturday night

Our room
 The Flamboyant tie, dating back to 2012!

We (tried) to make a good strogonoff for lunch

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