Mission Slideshow

Monday, May 21, 2012

Week #58 - "Sorry it took so long pal. There was a lot of wood to go through."


So I had a meeting with the President this week, again. Hahaha. Yes, I see that guy a lot. Que Sorte. Anyway, we had a meeting about the temple and all those who will be working there to help out and he pointed out that our mission as a whole is doing well. Really well! We are all working a ton and trying so hard and we see the fruits of our labors! The President mentioned that because of how well our mission is doing, the Church will be trying to implement what Mission Manaus does in all the missions in the world!! He was not really specific what that meant but I think it means they will be taking a look at how we are organized, how we run everything, etc. My mission is a hardcore mission. We work, we work, and work some more. We are not worried about doing the minimum to earn privileges like watching Disney movies. We try our hardest and we do all this in the most effective way possible, as our President has designed it. We are not allowed to be slackers here in this mission. One of the best changes our President has made i that there is no more knocking on doors and a lot more working with members. We have seen this be far more effective. This land is special and these people are blessed. I have full confidence in that this mission will continue to be THE BEST. ;)

I went on a division this week, or rather exchanges as it is called in the states. I went with Elder Lessa for a day in my area and we had a really amazing time. Let me tell you about Elder Lessa. He is from Fortaleza, Ceará, Brazil. He is 24 years old and he is the only member of his family that is a member of this church. His family does not really support his mission. He is from a very humble family and he pre-mission life has really opened my eyes. You know how I complained about the mattresses that the missionaries have (that's why I bought a hammock)? Well that night when I was with Elder Lessa, he told me about how grateful he is for the mission because for the first time in his life he has a "good" mattress to sleep on and a large room to sleep in. I felt so bad and ungrateful. I truly felt humbled by such an honest and pure missionary. He is happy, never complains, and is truly grateful just to be serving, because at least every night he came home to a roomy house and nice bed. Oh, how he left an impact on me and how I need to be a better person. I still have a lot to learn.

While on divisions with Elder Lessa, we taught Giselle. I do not remember if I have already mentioned her before but she is really cool and she really wants to get baptized but is always delaying. THEN... this we taught her a powerful lesson on following Christ and we were all moved by the words of Elder Lessa. Giselle then decided to get baptized next week! She also visited the temple with her boyfriend, a less active member who is coming back to the church. They were stunned by the beauty and spirit that they felt there and now she is certain that she will be baptized!!

We also had a very powerful lesson with a man named Luiz. He was very attentive and when we gave him a Book of Mormon, he was extremely excited to read. He told us a very powerful story:
he said, "Last week I was sitting at a bus stop downtown, waiting for my bus to take me home. I was on a bench by myself but I noticed a older man who was looking at me. He stared and then came over and asked me my name. I told him my name and he proceeded to instruct me on a few things, though I do not remember all that he said. Then before he left, he told me that that week I would receive what I had been searching for and that I should follow it. The man then turned around and walked away." He then proceeded with, "Well that day Sergio (a member who lives next door) invited me to the Mormon church and the next day you two (my companion and I) showed up and told me that you had a message for me that would change my life and that I should ask God if it was true. Now you give me this book and tell me of a temple and I want to know, is this what the man meant? Is this my path from God?" We testified that it is the path and we told him we will take him to the temple open house to visit. Sergio testified as well of how he read the Book of Mormon for 20 years before he was baptized! He said that it is all true and that it was going to change Luiz's life. Very powerful discussion!

So my companion is nuts. He decided that he would try to make a fire by smashing together the two stones I have that are from the granite of the Manaus temple. As he did so, he actually achieved a few sparks and a really nasty smell. He said, "Dude, that smells like burnt ants...I know because I have burnt ants before." I died laughing when he said that because he sounded so dumb. Man, a mission is full of crazy moments. Another crazy moment was when I was at the temple. I helped a NUN get into a wheel chair to see the temple. It was really cool! Also, Irmã Graça is so cool! I gave her my pants this week and she re-did the hem so they weren't so long and took in the leg. So now I am not drowning in my giant pants!!! YES. Now it is a lot cooler when I walk down the street.

So YES!!!!!!!!!!!! THE TEMPLE OPENED!!!!!!!!!!! I went there and saw thousands of people there. AMAZING! But what was even more amazing was the fact that I saw all my old member friends from the first two areas of my mission! ALL OF THEM form Mauazinho and Jorge Teixeira. I gave out many handshakes and hugs to the cool young men who always chilled with me playing soccer. It was awesome to see so many happy, loving faces that have meant so much to me. I love these people here and I will never forget about how much this all means to me.

Anyway, that was my week. Hope you have a great week as well!
Eu vos amo,
Elder Asa Laws

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