Oi minha familia!
I decided to start out in Portuguese. This week was really good. We have been preparing and helping our investigators to be ready for baptism. This next week (my last week in this area) we will have three baptisms and a wedding. So we are praying that the husband will continue to stay away from smoking and the family will stay strong in preparing for baptism. We also began to teach their daughter the lessons, and we gave her a Book of Mormon. However, we are not sure if she is hearing the lessons because she is interested in the church or us. The reason I wonder this is because she was asking very odd questions such as if we are allowed to receive gifts on the mission or kiss on the mission. Things like that. My companion took care of those questions as I was just nodding my head yes since I didn't understand what was going on.
We found a less active member this week who lives with another woman and has two kids. Well, actually they kind of found us, since we were walking on the other side of the street and the family stood up and started yelling for us to come over. My companion didn't hear but I did (I'm still not accustomed to people randomly yelling yet), and we went over and taught his wife. They actually ended up coming to church yesterday and the wife, who was at first reluctant to get married legally, finally decided to get married this week. (The culture here in Brazil is if you live with someone else, that is considered marriage, though it is not really a legal marriage.) She didn't exactly like church too much because the prayers were not powerful enough. We told this to another one of our investigators and she rolled her eyes and face palmed.
Studying is going good and I am starting to use a study journal. At first I began using it because I wanted people to stop nagging me about it, but then I realized that it actually helps somewhat. Another reason I started is because I began to study the doctrine that I teach intently. My companion mentioned to me that his old mission president said to him, that if we study the basic principals and ordinances of the gospel ie: Faith, repentance, baptism, gift of the Holy ghost and enduring to the end; if we study every detail and ask questions about every detail to Heavenly Father, and apply these doctrines in our own lives, we will know everything that the apostles know because everything about our church and beliefs is based off of the gospel. I looked at that as a challenge and I want to study now, as much as I can. I want to know, because I realized that the more I learn, the greater desire I have to share with other people. So yes, family, you too should study as much as you can about everything you can because it will bless your life. Knowledge is power, and power is knowledge. We are here on earth to understand how to properly use the knowledge and power we gain.
I know that these things are true and I know that we will not learn anything unless we do our part and study. I know that the Book of Mormon and the Bible are the word of God, and they are equally important to us, as well as the Doctrine and Covenants and Pearl of Great Price. I know that Joseph Smith was a Prophet, and through him Jesus Christ's church and priesthood authority was restored today. I am so grateful for our loving Heavenly Father and his Beloved Son, as they continually love and try to help us, even if we constantly reject them. This is true love and I know that if we work at it, we can achieve it to for them.
I love you all and thank you very much for your support and example.
Elder Kevin Brady