This week was fine, although I am really glad that New Year´s is over and our investigators are returning from their holidays. New Years Eve was good. We went to a members house with 6 other missionaries and watched The Other Side of Heaven. Then we spent the night at the other missionaries´ house in the Palmeiras ward. At midnight there were a ton of fireworks and loud music and stuff. It was kind of cool but made for a short night of sleep. On New Years Eve and New Years Day EVERYTHING was closed. All the stores were shut down and the streets were empty. I think New Years here was just as big as Christmas was, maybe bigger.
We are starting to receive more member references and are finding people on the streets to teach so our teaching pool is expanding. This is a good thing because it means we can teach more lessons and I really like to teach lessons. Elder Bangerter and I are working hard and with the transfers coming up in a few weeks we hope to get some baptisms in before the transfers. This week was spent trying to find new people and teaching a lot of first lessons. However this week I did attend my first funeral here in Brazil. There is a young man in our ward named Marcos who is 18 and working on his mission papers. He is one of our ward missionaries and has helped us out a lot by giving us references of his friends. Anyways for over a year his mom has been battling cancer and she did on January 1. On January 2 there was a viewing in the church and Marcos asked us to come. The viewing went on for about 3 hours and then and the end a couple speakers shared their thoughts. We went for the last part of the viewing and heard the speakers. It was sad story all the way around. She was baptized a little less than a year ago and had really wanted to go through the temple but was waiting. However both of her children are active members so I think the temple work will be done quickly. It kind of made me realize how important temples are and how I should talk more about them during the lessons we give. It could really help a lot of people to know that their parents/ancestors have a way to live with God again just like we do. Other than that there is not much to report this week.
Love you all!
Elder Caleb Anderson