Nick and I are serving two year missions in different parts of Brazil! He is in Goiânia, and I am in Vitória. This blog contains our emails home, in which we describe the work that we are engaging in. Email us! firstname.lastname@example.org and email@example.com
Tuesday, January 20, 2015
BOM DIA my friends! One more week gone.
This week is really weird, like I hate to say it but it was so ordinary that there's almost nothing for me to say about it... haha.
ONE thing that was cool is that we had a multi zone meeting with President Kuceki and we got to watch MEET THE MORMONS!!! It was so cool. He was like "This is one of the best selling films in the US... but I'm pretty sure it's just because all of the Mormons went and watched it!" Haha, idk if that's true, but it was cool to see a bunch of different perspectives of these people and how the gospel influenced their lives. I especially liked the one guy Bishnu from Nepali (the other missionaries didn't share my enthusiasm... I think I just liked it because of my fascination with other cultures) who studied in the US and converted and then went back to Nepal to help the people there. He helped them get clean water and built schools and stuff, he did things that really helped people that didn't have the opportunities so common in other parts of the world.
Elder Silva got better, after one Pday and one night for me badly spent on a hard hospital room couch, he ended up better and we actually got to go out and work this week. What a blessing to teach the "light of the world" and the "único caminho" to the people of this region. Now we are madly trying to baptize someone, because I think I am his only companion with whom he didn't baptize and he thinks its a second chance from God haha. maybe it is!
They say that an apostle is going to come and do a conference in a city in our mission called Uberlândia! I'm not really sure if its true, but I sure hope so and I hope I will be able to hear him speak. When y'all said that there was a conference with Elder Oaks in Michigan I thought you meant a broadcast or something, not that he would be right there with you! That is something special.
No mom, I haven't got the box yet. and yes they do Valentines in Brasil but its during June or something weird haha. I love you guys and hope you're doing well, I know that Christ lives, and I'll talk to you next week!
Love, Elder Nicholas Olsen
the view from my apartment
My dearest loved ones,
Welp, I can't say I didn't have any run-ins with the Police this week,... Yep, same old problems with the law here! That is, immigration law. Because I took the new Americans to the Federal Police to get registered, and now EVERYONE IS LEGAL! WOOO! And afterwards we got ice cream:
but I think that was the most exciting part of the week! Unfortunately. I spent a LOT of time this week working on the departure dates of all the missionaries for this year, because the whole system had been messed up somehow. After looking so much at the dates that these missionaries will be able to go home and see their families, you could say that I am sufficiently trunky.
BUT. I did learn something really interesting this week about following the example of our leaders, and in particular of the prophets and apostles. Presidente Young asked me to draft a letter to send to the parents and priesthood leaders of missionaries that come to hold a position of leadership in the mission - to let them know that their missionaries are growing and maturing. He really liked the letter - but I learned a lesson as he began to correct my formatting. He said: "All of our correspondence for the mission should be patterned on the correspondence of the First Presidency" - and began to show me how the Prophet and his counselors format their letters. Truly we should emulate the Savior and His Servants in everything - even down to our formatting!
Our recent convert Deborah is doing super well. The other day we showed up at her house, and she had made a cake for us! She is indescribably happy to be a member of the church. She even took out her nose piercing without us saying anything to her - I think the other church members have been helping her quite a bit! When we asked her why she took it out, she said "Well we've got to change, right?" She really understands the principle of repentance and the chance that she has to make her life much happier!
....and her dog had puppies!
I have come to realize what a blessing it is to be able to teach and testify to people about the reality of Jesus Christ and His Atonement, about Joseph Smith and the Restoration, about the importance and necessity of baptism,... about any gospel truth! I miss doing it! I love working in the mission office, and I now that my work is important and sacred - but I wish I could get out more to teach. That is one of my goals for this next week - to be able to leave the office and teach the gospel more!
I hope that you are all well, and if not, let me know. I'll send off some prayers on your behalf. I know that the scriptures are an anchor in our life, and that they hold the answer to all of our problems - particularly the Book of Mormon. I love y'all, and I love Jesus Christ more. Sorry, but He is #1.