Dad´s email this week got me ´´fired up!´´ I loved hearing the news about the Marion Branch. I unfortunately will miss Elder Perry´s visit (if he comes), but let him know that if he comes to Brazil, I will make him another PB and honey sandwich. (Just let him know that he needs to bring the peanut butter...) Isn´t that TERRIBLE!? Brazil doesn´t have peanut butter! Seriously, c'mon now... My companion saved me though and had three jars that his parents sent him for Christmas. This companionship was inspired... Haha so when I arrived, there was no need to worry. Also, the best part is, he thinks he´s allergic to it. So, guess what. I´m the only one that eats it. Yep. Oh yeah. I already finished one of the containers this past week... Opa!
Anyway, it was exciting news to hear about the success of the Marion branch. That´s what I´m talking about! I love this time - ´´Hastening the Work of Salvation!´´ It´s like being apart of the 1980 USA Miracle hockey team or the ´´Dream Team´´ with Michael Jordan in the late 80´s and 90´s. When I think about from the time of Adam, all the way through Joseph Smith, The Lord´s never hastened the work in the vineyard like he is now. Prophecies are being fulfilled, adding another testimony to the divinity of this work. It´s hard, oooohhhh man it´s hard, but it´s so exciting. The Savior is on His way and I get to play on his team everyday. All I´m asked to do is prepare every person I can to make sure it´s a ´´great day´´ for them, and not a ´´dreadful´´ one. Why? Because I love The Lord and I love my ´´extended´´ (Brazilian) brothers and sisters.I felt bad this week about my email last week. I´m not sure how you may have read it, but I felt like I made it sound like I was down in the dumps. If I did, it wasn´t the case. Haha. The thing that made me worry the most was the email you sent to the mission office. When I got a call this week about how I´m doing, I was taken a little back. They then told me (after repeating himself 4 times - he was a Brazilian speaking Portuguese over the phone... very difficult) that mom/dad sent an email saying that we had no food. I immediately started worrying about how you may have read the email as well as some other things. Anyway, sure I felt embarrassed because they called me because of a ´´parent email,´´ but you actually saved me. Haha. I had 150 reais (about 75 dollars) that I totally forgot about. The days of fasting are over! We´re going shopping right after we email. Yeah!Also, we saw some incredible things this week. I don´t know if my email triggered 1000´s of prayers or what, but there were definitely angels with us this week. Haha it was awesome. Keep on praying for the area of Jundiai! I definitely felt them this week.
Highlights:-Having to learn a language that you studied for such a short time, and then stopped studying for six months (kind of), has been very humbling to me. Although I do plan and prepare things I will say during lessons/contacts, I spend a lot of the time just observing. It´s helped in more ways than a few. For instance, when I was in Georgia, I loved teaching... Maybe a little too much. I would always talk more than my companions. Now, I want to teach so bad but I have to sit back and observe. It´s a combination of Heavenly Father´s sense of humor and a lesson for me to learn. However, with this topic of ´´observing,´´ I´m beginning to pick up on small things people do here. I constantly think of Mormon in the Book of Mormon and how Amaron mentions how Mormon is ´´quick to observe.´´ I´m beginning to learn this Christlike attribute.-We met a couple FAMILIES this week! Whoo! I love me some families! We met a kid named Louis, walking on the street last week. The spirit hit me to ask him if he knew anyone that may be interested in our message. Quem voce conhece... He responded, ´´Ahhhh. Minha Mae.´´We followed him there to meet his mom and turns out, he has SEVEN brothers and sisters! Haha holy smokes, I know. We weren´t able to meet his mom then, and still haven't been able to, but we have taught the baptismal aged ones. Louis is 12 and is the second oldest. He´s got an incredible sister who´s ten years old and goes to church by herself on Wednesdays and an older brother who's 15 who has kind of taken over as the father of the home. It turns out his dad left for a ´´business trip´´ three years ago, and never came home. I asked him what he wants in life and he (Wagner) said for his dad to come home. It´s really hard on the family because the mom has to work all of the time, causing her to never be home. So, Wagner is starting work to help pay for the family expenses while Louis and his 10 year old sister raise the kids. It´s sad to see but also incredible. I´m always taken back when I see them walk out of their house carrying their 2 year old sister or talking with their 4 year old brother. We figured out that their neighbor is trying to have someone take them away from their mom because they´re by themselves all of the time. When that actually may seem like the best option, its sad because the kids think their neighbor is trying to tear their family apart.-We met a couple families this week who think I´m in the One Direction band. One of the dads took a picture with us and another one was making fun of me. He made fun of me the entire lesson to because my Portuguese is bad, but I gave him a hug at the end and told him I loved him. Haha. Its easy to get discouraged but not worth it. I hope the people see that I'm here because I love them.-To wrap things up, we had an investigator at church with us yesterday who showed up with a hat on. We didn't say anything until the closing prayer, when Elder Lee asked him to take it off to show respect. During the prayer he hit my leg and said something to me that I didn't understand. Haha so I put my finger to my mouth and said that it was the prayer right now. We closed our eyes again... At the end of the prayer, he was gone! Haha he got up and left church! Someone in the hallway said he almost was running. Haha oh man we had no idea how to react. We called him later and explained that we didn't mean to offend him. He accepted our apology.Anyway, I love it here! I love being on the Lord´s Dream/Miracle team. Wearing the uniform everyday and putting on the badge gets me ´´fired up!´´ What a marvelous work this is!
I love you all,Elder Welch