Can you believe that I've been serving for nearly five months? Because I can hardly believe it! Sometimes I can hardly believe I'm speaking Português. Sometimes I wake up and expect to hear inglês but then I hear the neighbors calling for their dogs or Sister Pereira and I start chatting and I realize, "Hey. Wait. What language is this?" :)
We were eating at Irma Roli's when she said something along the lines of, "She knows to cover the food when she's done?" And I said, "Oh I will Irma. No worries!" She started laughing and for the rest of the lunch, whenever someone would enter she would tell them, "Be careful! The Americana can understand everything we say so don't try anything funny because she'll know!"
After lunch I started to wash the dishes for her, but like always and like every family here, she didn't want me to. They don't like a little bit a service ;) She said, "It's fine, Sister! I can do them later!" I responded, "Oh Sorry, Irma, I don't understand Português!" and proceeded to finish cleaning the dishes. She got a kick out of that!
And let me tell you! English is wierd now! I think that I still think in english (ha!) but talking is nearly impossible! My brain is on a completely different wave length! Totalmente Português!
So we had an interview with the Presidente da Estaca here and it was really cool! I want to say that there are no coincidences. These past couple weeks we were really struggling with a decision about how we can strengthen our Branch here, our membros, and our Pesquisadores when the members want us to visit them everyday but we have numbers we need to meet everyday and week, and Presidente Cruz told us that we need to stop visiting members! Ai.
It's as confusing as it sounds and there are million puzzle pieces. This week was a balancing act of rules and goals, members and investigators.
But let me tell. I can truly bear my testimony of the blessing of working with members. This work does not function without members. We need them as much as they need us.
One example is Cassyel. We were headed for a visita when I got a call from Patrícia.
"Oi! Sister, do you want to hear some good news?"
"You're going to have a baptism!"
"What? When? HOW?? No, wait, WHO??"
She proceeded to explain how Cassyel has been spending almost everyday at her house and they all started talking about the church and priesthood and to shorten a very long story: Cassyel decided he wanted to be baptized! And right after another investigator, Camilly, decided the same thing!
Back to our intervista with the Presidente of the Stake, he started by talking to us about the talk by Elder Uchtdorf, Forget Me Not. In this talk Uchtdorf refers to the story Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. Presidente had us read what was written on the Golden Ticket
“Greetings to you, the lucky finder of this Golden Ticket … ! Tremendous things are in store for you! Many wonderful surprises await you! … Mystic and marvelous surprises … will … delight, … astonish, and perplex you.”
And proceeded to explain how our mission call is our Golden Ticket to many wonder surprises. He told us how during this time will we experience things that we will never experience anywhere else. As missionarias we will be the Presidente of the Young Womens, or Young Mens, we will teaching the Principles of the Gospel class or be the president of the Relief Society or in some momentos the Priesthood. And sometimes we will even be the President of the Branch. This isn't to say we are more important or the members here are less, but this is to say we will work along side them and all these experiences will delight and astonish and perplex us, but be for our benefit.
He told us, There is a fine line between a good missionary and a fubeca. We were worried this week we were walking that line. Because a good missionary doesn't "waste time" with members. But a fubeca always has more baptisms. Why?
It's all about who trusts you.
"Teach them, and if necessary, use words." Be the example. Show them, members and não members alike, you care. And as we work we will gain the confidence of not only the members here but the Lord.
And now, we can all work together.
How sweet is the work. How marvelous are the surprises that await us.
All my love, Sister Hemmert
BTW. I will be killing a duck on the 9th day of August :0 #fivemonthsamissionary