Monday, July 23, 2012

19 Investigators in church, 1 baptism

July 16, 2012
Hey, Dad,

I really enjoyed your thoughts here.  Especially your comments about the youth not being accepting to people that smoke or that sort of thing.  I just laughed a bit.  I think their perceptions about smoking and that sort of thing are a little bit sheltered.  On the other hand, I grew up in that high school and in my experience those people that were smoking and involved with those sorts of things were the last people you wanted to hang out with because it would just lead to trouble for you.  I think that I found a good way to work with that problem  I interacted with everyone at school and was fairly open to talk to and work with others but when it came to some situations I didn’t like to stay there.  Unfortunately in the high school if you smoke chances are you swear a lot and are involved in other things and it’s not pleasant to be around those sorts of people.

So this week was good too. We had 19 investigators in church and they are doing great.  I don’t really have a hard time remembering their names, which I think is amazing.  Before the mish I had a really hard time with names but here I have been blessed with an ability to remember names more easily.  In fact, about 6 months ago I was struggling to remember names (it was especially hard with Portuguese names that were strange and new), and I started to pray and ask for help to remember and at the same time I tried to focus more on learning their names. (I drew pictures and made notes) and from then on it has been a ton easier to remember.  Fortunately our ward is really good with the investigators and most of them have friends that are members.  We only walked with one investigator to church and she was already walking to church when we met her.  Unfortunately most of them need to get married, but if everything works out we will have 2 baptisms this Saturday.

Everything is pretty good here.  Today it was over 100 degrees behind our house in the sun (it was only 10:15 in the morning).  I was a bit surprised because I wasn’t feeling too hot.  I think it will be interesting to come home and feel the cold again.

Oh, and the package hasn’t arrived yet but should soon.  Oh, and in the package you will send you can leave out the photo album I asked for but it would be way cool if you could send more pictures of home.

I think I have been struggling a bit with my comp, getting everything done in the morning and evening, and we have been having trouble teaching together.  Fortunately it’s getting better and we talked about some of this stuff and it’s getting better. 

I love you guys.  Keep up the good work.  Eliza, congrats for getting your Patriarchal blessing. Pay attention to it because they really do help in the tough times.

Elder Clark

July 23, 2012
Hey, so this week has been pretty good.  We didn’t break our record of 19 investigators in church but we had some other really good things that happened this week.  We have been teaching a couple, Rosa (the mother of Marilene) and Antonio.  They have been progressing rapidly.  Rosa smokes a lot, but the day after we taught the Word of Wisdom she burned the rest of her cigarettes.  But she has some other health problems like diabetes and chronic daiahria  -- yeah, I don’t know how to spell.  So when she stopped smoking she got really weak and was feeling horrible.  But we passed by and gave her a priesthood blessing.  Elder Vale anointed and I sealed the anointing.  The blessing was simple but the Spirit was strong in the room.  The following day Rosa went to the doctor and they tested for diabetes and the test said that she didn’t have diabetes anymore.  Ever since, she has been a lot more healthy.  I think it’s amazing to see people’s faith work in them.  A lot of times their problems don’t go away completely or right away, but according to their faith they receive renewed strength.

Elder Vale will be transferred and I don’t know who will stay with me here in our area.  President Scisci had another temporary missionary to fill Elder Vale’s spot but it’s still up in the air.  I think this whole situation here is strange because this will be my second transfer with a temporary missionary. 

Oh, I haven’t received the package, and I wanted to ask Liza if she could check my Face Book and accept the people that have sent friend requests.

Yeah, so that’s what has been going on.  Oh, we had a baptism this week (Dayana).  I can’t remember if I already told you all about her.  She likes to make sweets and wants to open a café but fancy.  She is 25 and has a 2 year old son named Rafá who looks like the son of an American -- blond, blue eyes.   The baptism was really cool and we had a lot of people there.
  The room was over flowing and we had a bunch of investigators there as well.  Things are going well here and it looks like I will stay here for awhile so that I can baptize these families. 

A ton of missionaries are finishing their missions this week and it’s pretty interesting how time has been flying by.
  By the looks of it, I will only have 4 areas during my mission because I have been staying in my areas for quite a while.

I hope everything is going great there.  Thanks so much for your letters and support!   Keep living up the summer!!

Love, Elder Clark

Saturday, July 14, 2012

Two Weeks of Letters from Belem During Rainy Season

Monday, July 2, 2012


Hey, everything here is going OK.  We had a ward party here Saturday and it turned out to be really cool.  The youth of the ward had some dancing presentations, and I filmed a bit with my camera.  

Good news: we have set a date to go to the Cartolio to get Magno and Marilene hitched!  They are doing well and we have a bunch of other families that are close to getting married here as well.  

I have finally settled everything with the members in our ward (their problems with me) and they are starting to bring new families to church!  Some members just don’t understand that their food is good but that I won’t overeat, they get really self-conscious if you only eat one full plate of food, and I feel like I’m eating Thanksgiving dinner every day.  

It’s pretty rainy here these days, well, it is really hot then we have thunder showers in the afternoons.  Thankfully I have two pairs of shoes and I switch them each day so I don’t have to wear them wet.  

We got our new mission president and we will meet him in person this week.  

My skin irritation left but I am left with a minor skin infection that blisters around my waist line and in my groin.  Yeah, that’s pleasant.  But it doesn’t hurt, it just itches after the blisters pop (the blisters are under just the top layer of skin).  But I have a cream to put on them every night.  

I am doing well. I hope you all are doing well too.  Today we spent a few hours with an RM and made lemon bars with maracuja [passionfruit, picture downloaded from Google] instead of lemons.  Out of time.


I will write a letter later today!!!

Love you all!!

Monday, July 9, 2012
Man this past week was bit crazy.  It had the regular ups and downs.  We have a lot of people almost baptized we just need to finish teaching then and give them a baptismal date.  We are going to marry some people in the next few weeks as well.  

My comp is interesting.  He is pretty good.  We will have transfers in two weeks and after that I don’t know what will happen.  I really want to stay here because I have prepared a lot of people to be baptized but it will take a while for some of them to get married. My comp (after a few weeks) told more of the story about how he messed up his knee.  Apparently that was only part of the story.  Well, there were a ton of things going on in his mission, and he didn’t like the cold, so he said that he wouldn’t go back to his mission and he is resubmitting his papers.  From the stories I have heard from him, his mission there was really disobedient and a ton of missionaries where sent home dishonorably.  That sort of stuff is always sad to hear.  No one is perfect on the mission but to get sent home from the mission dishonorably for breaking commandments is pretty close to denying the Holy Ghost.

Well cool things that happened this past week.  I met the mission president.  He was really nice.  And I took a shower in a rain storm last night on our back patio (it is surrounded by a wall so no one could see).  We got 12 investigators to church and I tried the classic açai and peixe food combo at one of the biggest open markets in South America [fried white fish with purple açai pudding/sauce on the side, pictures downloaded from Google] .  That was pretty cool.

I love you all a lot I hope that the summer is great up there.   

Eliza, Happy B-day!!!! Man,18 is pretty old.  Remember, seize the day!

I am out of time, but say hi to everyone for me and tell the grandparents I love them and that I got the letter about the Manaus Temple!!

Eliza look up the Coldplay song “Paradise!”