Monday, November 4, 2013

Hello! (Week 76)

Dear family,
It is a beautiful day today here in Ribeirão das Neves.  We had a great week but before I get started off, I wanted to tell you something crazy that happened three weeks ago that I neglected to tell you about.
We were waiting at the bus stop to go to a district meeting. There was a good amount of people on the street going about their business, buying, selling and whatnot.  Then suddenly, this guy comes out of nowhere and throws a firework at the ground right in front of us.  I barely had time to say to my companion ´That is a firework!´ when it exploded right in front of us.  It was extremely loud and  really hurt our ears. The guy just walked away.  He must have been drunk or crazy, one of the two.  Anyway - that was a funny story that happened a while ago.
We were blessed with three baptisms this week.  Two of Zelandia´s children were baptized - Willian (18) and Raissa (13).  It was really cool to help them become members of the Church - a really spiritual process.  They started off really hesistant but then really opened up when they started reading the Book of Mormon.  They are great friends and I love them all - the whole family actually! They are a wonderful blessing from Heavenly Father.  We also baptized Dowglas, a grandchild of Dona Mercedes that was baptized a month or so ago.  He had been wanting to be baptized for a while and we had been teaching his mom so that she could be baptized too - unfortunately, she hasn´t accepted to live the commandments yet but Dowglas accepted and he will be going to church with his very active grandma now.  :)  I love the gospel!
We had a great meeting yesterday with the leadership of the stake. Pres. Fortunato came as well as the stake presidency and a lot of the bishops.  We discussed how we can better work together as one in the work of the Lord and it was really inspiring to see how many great and worthy men the Lord has called to lead His church.  The Stake President is a really spiritual guy and I felt the spirit really strong when he spoke.  He is all about missionary work too which is wonderful. 
This week we are going to work hard and keep the faith.  I have been a lot calmer these days thanks to a concerted effort to exercise faith.  Faith and doubt can´t exist in the same place at the same time and we are commanded to have faith, so I have been consciously choosing to believe and have faith every second that I am tempted to doubt or fear.  It has changed so much already and will continue to change my life.  I know that the gospel is true!
I love you all! Share the gospel with someone today!
Oh and Elder Cameron Kapp! Congratulations on the successful mission! I loved the inspiring letter you sent me! Don´t go too crazy now that you are home! :)
Elder Jacob

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