23 November 2015

This week we met with the president of our area, Elder Costas. It was strange when I first met him becuase I recoginized him from General Conference. He’s spoken there a few times actually. He’s currently the most senior member of the Quorum of the Seventy so if he becomes an Apostle sometime I wouldnt be surprised.

He set our goals even higher and spoke of 2 missionaries 20 years ago here in Brazil who baptised 38 people in one sunday when he was their mission president!! So now of course I’ll have to top that…
Brazil’s begun to mint new currency centered around the olympics here and everywhere you can see advertisements of the olympics. It seems that every single business here is a certified sponser as well so every single reciept I recieve here has the 5 rings on it along with an open invitation to “come with us to the olympics.” Needless to say, because of my undying love for the olympics, this influx of propaganda is killing me!
This week we baptised an incredibly smart 10 year old named Pedro. He’s incredible and during our lessons spoke of how he knows he will always stay active in the church and how he wants to be married in the temple when he mades his wife. He’s awesome.
This week I learned how to use the photo effects on my camera and with a little free time when my companion was sick I crated I tie from the jeans that I tore at the CTM. And not to brag but literally everyone at church was like “you made that!?” All thanks to some old american ingenuity.
Yorks Denim Tie
Anyway, this week was great and although we were working hard the hold time I had lots of fun doing to it.
Elder Westenhaver

16 Nov. 2015

This week my companion and I baptised 4 brothers and gave all of them the holy ghost as well. The two oldest also so recieved the preisthood. and they´re all super good friends with all the members in the ward alread so I´m sure they´re gonna stay active. The Oldest wants to serve a mission as well!

This week the President called every missionary in our mission to one location for an impromptu meeting about goals. He then proceded to quintuple our goals for street contacting and door knocking and highten all the rest of our goals as well. Thus, Needless to say this week was pretty difficult. But I think that were probably gonna have 3 or 4 more baptisms this month because of our change in goals.
 This week wen I was studying the old testament I came across some funny scriptures that I´d like to share.
In Zechariah chapter 5 verses 1 and 2, the prophet is caught up into a vision and in his words… “then I turned, and lifted up mine eyes, and looked, and beheld a flying roll. And (an angel) said unto me, what seest thou? And I answered, I see a flying roll.” I´m not entirely sure what this is supposed to mean but I really hope that Zechariah really did see and stray cinnamon roll flying towards him from some innexperienced overzealous cook.
In Job chapters 39:9-11 and 30:29 we find some interesting animals around Job´s house… “Will the unicorn be willing to serve thee? Wilt thou trust him because his stregth is so great?” ——  “I am a brother to Dragons.” I dont know exactly what Job was talking about here either but these scriptures at face value seem to suggest that Job, Like Eragon, is a dragon rider and that Unicorns exist.
In proverbs 23:13-14 the writer sassily tells us “to withold NOT correction from the child. For is thou beatest him with a rod, he shall not die. Thou shalt beat him with a rod.” Maybe its just me but the writer was in a sarcastic mood when he wrote this one…
Thus far on my mission Ive been using the same plastic Desani Water bottler that I recieved on the air plane for free on my way here to Sao Paulo. My goal is to use it my entire mission.
About 20 feet from my house theres this church in which everyone has the opportunity to sing if the want to. For whatever reason the people that frequent this church all love to sing solos in to the Mic even though they´re all horrible. So every day here beofre I go to sleep it sounds like some knock off bar is having a Kareoke Night next door.
ANyway this week was fun, stressful but rewarding.
Goodspeed and Love, Elder Westenhaver

9 November, 2015

This week was fun / interesting / made-me-rage-a-few-times. Because someone stole my razor from in the CTM, and because I was having problems with my church issued money card, as of wednesday last week I had not purchased a high quality replacement. Because I decided to be thrifty and settle for the cheapest razor I could find at the store near my house, I ended up with thousands of cuts on my jaw from the crap BIC razor I bought for one R$. I literally snapped the razor in half afterwards and actually threw it into the trash can… moral of the story: Buy good razors. Also here in brazil they have these Ice-cream-man-esque companies that drive around the city playing music so that if you are in dire need of propane tanks or water you can simply buy it on your doorstep instead of going to the store. I mention this because very near to our house we have an incredibly overzealous salesman who loves to drive by our house at 4 am in the morning playing his song trying to sell us propane.

Many of our investigators live in an apartment complex close to our house so we spend much of our time in that complex. One of the people who lives in those apartments likes to go from doorstep to doorstep in Sao Bernardo and dig through your trash on garbage day to remove anything recyclable you might be trying to throw away. He places all of the recyclable goods he finds in a huge cart that he pushes around. I have no idea where him or his recyclables go.
Every Bus here in Brazil drives like the night bus from Harry Potter. This week during a particularly foggy night we were walking around the city and one of the night busses stopped next to us. The driver opened the door, hailed us and told us that he was a member of the church and that he wanted us to teach his friend (who was on the bus with him) the first discussion. So while he drove through the ultra thick fog we taught the restoration to the man while the eerie yellow-orange light of the road lamps barely allowed us to see. It was a strange lesson.
While I was buying my razor at walmart, (literally the only place that had the kind I needed) George Michael´s Careless whispers (THE saxaphone song) met my ears from the walmart overhead speakers. After that like 5 of my favoirte songs came on those speakers. I now officially love walmart almost as much as I love target.
This Upcoming week were going to have 4 baptisms!! Its a family and after the parents are married were going to have 2 more! finally my work here seems to be paying off. Also this week I went on splits twice and the missionaries that I spent the day with taught me a lot.
Also this week while I was studying upstairs the washing machine began to overflow because there was a problem with the water drain. I ran down and solved the problem but the damage was done… there was water all over the floor of my downstairs. Of course right then the Metcalfs called (the senior couple in our ward and told us that in 10 minutes they would be at our doorstep to examine our apratment. but it was all good becuase the were super understanding about the whole thing.
Anyway this week was good, fun and fullfilling and I wish  you all a happy wonderful day wherever it is that you live.
Elder Westenhaver