Sunday, September 30, 2012

September 24, 2012

Hey Family and friends,

So, tomorrow is actually when my companion leaves and my new companion will arrive.  His name is Elder ****, and he is from my district at the CTM. It will be fun to catch up with him.  He is from Washington and lived on a farm and he is a guy that follows every single rule with exactness and that might help this area turn around.  Who knows.  He is a very good worker and loves to be on the mission, at least from what I remember at the CTM.

So, nothing much is going on this week.  Just that my companion and I have been going to different people's homes so he can say goodbye to everyone.  He is very happy that he finally gets to go home. He is a good missionary but he stayed an extra 6 weeks so it is time. He is ready to get back into watching football.  Good stuff.

The weather is getting warmer, and it is still very windy.

There is not much to talk about.  My mind went blank.

I know the church is true and the Book of Mormon to be the word of God.  I know that the atonement is for each and every one of God's children. Because of it, all of us are able to repent of our sins and become clean.  The power of prayer is amazing. It is a way to talk to someone, God, who loves us and is always waiting to bless us if only we just ask.

I love you guys.  Have a great week.

Love, Elder Kevin Brady

September 17, 2012

Dear Family and Friends,

Same companion and branch.  We did get beds and a table today though, so that is great.  There will be a transfer next week. So at the end of this week, I will find out who my new companion is and if I will stay here in V******** or go to a new area.  Fun stuff. 

It is good to here everyone is doing well at home.  I remember Ms.. Reddekop.  Larson sounds familiar.  The others, not so much.  But yes, I was on the Wolves team at the middle school.  We actually were the best students in the school.  I remember when all the other teams were not allowed to go to the assembly because there was a riot during their lunch.  Our lunch was with some 8th grade team so we weren't there and we still got to go to the assembly and automatically won the cougar. 

So the members are fine.  They are just late to everything.  A meeting can start at 8:30 and they arrive at 8:45 or 9:00.  It really bothers me.  Especially if I have other more productive things that I could be doing.  I need to learn patience; but they need to learn to be on time. 

The lunch food I eat is still great.  They have hot sauce at almost every lunch. The sauce comes from the hottest pepper in Brazil.  It tastes really good.  I dump it on my rice and beans.  The members do too, so it is not bad manners.  Don't worry - I know manners.  I believe I had the best manners when I was at home.  Especially at drinking water.

The weather is getting warmer.  Right now it is perfect weather.  Overcast and warm.  No rain and no sun.  I love it.  It can't get much better than that.  Also winter has passed.  So now I won't have to feel cold for a long time.  I love the heat.  I can't stand cold.

I haven't eaten fish yet.  And I am happy about that.  Well, I took a bite out of fish at a buffet, thinking it was fried chicken.  I found out quickly it wasn't.  The good thing is that it was very bland and had very little fishy taste, so I didn't throw up :)

I love you guys and I know the church is true.  Have a great week everyone and remember the Lord and what he has done for us.  I am so grateful for him.

Elder Kevin Brady

Thursday, September 13, 2012

September 10, 2012

Hey Family,

Cool, I have two nephews now.  So, that is good that the birth went OK and that Nicholas is doing as well as he can be.  Happy Birthday Bill.  No box yet.  There is a district meeting tomorrow and I might get it then.  Who knows. [The mission president gave him permission to send me a quick email to tell me his package arrived on Wednesday - so we could activate his debit card – to replace the stolen one].

Mission is same old same old.  No baptisms yet.  I don't think we are getting one this month because of the rules and qualifications for baptisms.  We are still working though.  One of the families did promise to come to church this next Sunday and here in Brazil, when they give their word, they mean it.  They also said they will come more than once.  The reason they couldn't come this week is because of a baby shower for one of the girls.  But next week they will come.  Also the Dad had a surgery on his spine so that also complicated things.

One of our investigators saw American Football on TV yesterday and started asking about that and we helped him to somewhat understand.  This investigator goes to church every week and we figure that the best we can do is just be his friend but we can't push him or he pulls away.  Tough stuff.

We had a thunder storm last night.  It was very difficult to sleep.  It was really loud and bright and constant.

There is not much to write because I don't know what you want to know.  What questions you have?  it is getting hotter.  81 degrees the other day and it is still winter mind you.

The church is true.  Erica, if you see anyone at BYU Hawaii that knows me, tell them I said hi.

I love you guys.

Elder Kevin Brady

September 3, 2012

Dear Family and Friends,

I did not get the package yet, but this week the Zone Leaders are going to Florianópolis and the package might be there so who knows.  Yes, the mission president speaks Portuguese to me since he is only learning English, and I do understand him, and I speak Portuguese back to him. 

The mission President taught us about the importance of using the Book of Mormon whenever we teach since it is the Keystone of our religion.  Good stuff.

This week is going to be getting to the point week with our investigators.  We have one investigator who goes to church every week and also likes to feed us lunch, but she lives with a man who she has separated with.  In Brazil the whole marriage thing on paper doesn't ever really happen.  Her sister lives next door, alone, and so we will suggest that she move in with her sister, since she has no intentions of marrying the man.  We cannot baptize someone who is technically breaking the law of chastity, even if they aren't really doing anything.

The other investigator also goes to church every week. He has a wife and a son who are members, but he is a strong devoted catholic.  He is a strong devoted Mormon (in his beliefs and actions) as well and has huge respect for our church.  So we are going to see what his feelings are about the church and invite him to read and pray about the book of Mormon and if the time seems right, we will invite him to be baptized.  So that is what we will do.  The only thing is, that with this guy, the more we push the more he backs away so I don't know exactly yet how we can approach this.  But we will find a way with the Spirit.

We have another activity this week and more referrals coming up, so we will have more work to do which will be awesome.

I love the mission and I love you guys.  Have a great week.

Elder Kevin Brady

Sunday, September 2, 2012

August 27, 2012

Dear Family and Friends,

I still have not received the box you mailed me, but I hope I will this week when we go to the mission home for our interviews.  Yes, this week is interview week with president.  It is also the week that we receive all the letters from our family and friends. 

This last week was pretty good.  We had an activity on Friday with the young men and one of the young men brought about five friends which I thought was awesome.  We also had a few investigators at church.  One family did not show up because something came up and they were not able to go, but next week they told us that for sure that they will come to church.

We got a list of all the members from the church and there are about 180 or more members in our branch and only 18 are active.  So, my companion and I have some work to do with the less-actives and hopefully some of them can start coming back to church.  Also, I have noticed that the less-actives who are trying to become active again, are the greatest sources of references and missionary work in the church.  I wonder why it isn't the other way around?

The area is good and the food is great.  I bought a thing of hot sauce that holds actual peppers.  You don't eat the peppers, but you eat the oil (add it to your food).  Once the oil is gone, you add more oil (and vinegar if wanted) and then you can use it again. It lasts about two years or so and the older it is, the hotter it gets.  I need hotter peppers though, cuz the stuff I have is pretty weak.  All the members that feed us meals have pepper sauce too and it tastes really good on rice and beans.  Just add cheese and it tastes like a rice and bean burrito.

I read some of the Mormon chapters today in the Book of Mormon, and it is amazing to me how people don't realize that if they just look to Christ, the Lord their God, and seek repentance, their lives would be so much better.  And these people that Mormon writes about were not the kind of people that just lost faith over time. He reports that they deliberately turned away from God.  I look at it as:  they saw something evil and sinful and wanted it, even though they knew the gospel was true.  That's why Mormon was not able to preach to them.  It's not a happy period in the times of the Book of Mormon.

I know the gospel is true and I love you guys.  Have a great week.

Love, Elder Kevin Brady