I have my new companion now and we are having a great time here in the best mission in the world. We are even more excited to see that we will be receiving a very special visit from Elder Neil L. Andersen. I am extremely excited to meet him and be able to talk with him and hears his words. I really have no idea what he is going to talk about, but I am really excited to hear him!
The work here is going well and I am quite happy about the things that are going on here in the mission. We are baptizing a lot of men nowadays and Salt Lake is telling President Moreira a lot of good things lately. I feel very grateful for being a part of such a great work.
Nothing too exciting happened this week really. I will have a lot of good things to share next week, I promise! Love you all!
Yeah my companion was from the state of Paraná here in Brazil. It´s the neighboring state to São Paulo so it wasn´t too long of a drive for him to get home, but it still took 9 or 10 hours to get there. Now my companion is Elder Torres and he is also Brazilian. He is from the state of Rio Grande do Norte. It´s way up at the top of Brazil where it is extremely hot! It is the João Pessoa mission. He is brand spankin´ new to being the AP so I am just going to show him the ropes a little bit haha. I think the most important thing for us to do as AP´s is always be the example in the work. If we want to demand better work from the missionaries, we have to show that we are working harder than everyone else. For example, we have gone 21 weeks now with at least two baptisms or more in our area. It´s a record in all of the mission´s history. We also baptized 44 people last transfer. I had an example of this last night while I was following up with a couple of zone leaders. Their zone didn´t baptize anyone this week, not even in their area. I told them that they needed to pick up the slack in their area because they weren´t working the way they should be. They got all mad and said that they were focusing more in helping the other areas in the zone than in their own area. I told them that there really is no argument here because my companion and I do three-day exchanges with the entire mission and we are still able to get the results that we need. Imagine how this conversation would have gone if in my own work they saw that I was slacking off as well... So my new companion is catching on really quickly. Normally, with my mission president, the AP´s finish their mission as the AP. But I was called with a year and three months so I am the youngest AP ever in the mission. I think I will be released at the end of February because President Moreira wants to do a test and put me to train a new missionary in my last two transfers. It´s gonna be a big change going from AP to senior companion, but I think it´ll be good for me. Usually you stay for about 4 transfers as AP, but if I were to stay til the end I would stay for 6 transfers! So I think I need to leave! lol
I love working out here and São Paulo has become a second home for me. I know exactly where I am all the time, I can get wherever I want really easily, it´s great! I have a few more goals that I need to accomplish before coming home. I will tell you that my goal before coming home will be to baptize more than 150 people. I am getting really close already! I love setting goals now because I know how to accomplish them. I think that this will come in handy when I get home as well with college and whatnot. I also am putting all of my finance knowledge into practice here. I am probably one of the few missionaries who has saved his weekly allowance. I have about 300 bucks saved for those unexpected emergencies, when I see other missionaries beg for money from the secretaries because they spent it all too quickly. So I have a few good things going for me when I get home. I want to start working right from the start and start saving money.
Oh! And guess what is going to happen this week! Elder Andersen, the apostle, is coming to visit our mission! This Wednesday he´ll be coming to give a talk to us all and it´s going to be great! Two years ago, Elder Holland came here and usually one mission president will only get one visit from an apostle. But now we´ll be getting another visit and I think it´s going to some great news! Our mission is one of the highest baptizing and our attendance in sacrament meeting is increasing the fastest in Brazil! I am really excited for the meeting, but I am going to have to buy some new dress shoes because all I have are these ugly boots that I use to work in. You gotta look your best for an apostle, right? haha
I love my family so much and I am really excited to see you all again shortly.