Monday, September 17, 2012

July 16th Letter


Q: Are ward members and leaders pretty active with/supportive of missionary work?
A: Yeah, I think in all the people here understand the importance of baptism. I feel like in the United States no one even understands the importance of being baptized. People here will leave with the missionaries on the go; people talk a lot more about the church with their neighbors and stuff. It’s such a different perspective being a missionary, because it’s like you ask the members "Who do you know that we can teach?" Standard response, "Oh I don’t know I have talked some with my friends but I don’t know." It’s like you want to shake people and smack them in the face, it’s like look if you don’t talk to them about the church and invite them and stuff THEY CANT GO TO THE CELESTIAL KINGDOM! And so we do everything we can to suck all the information out of people, because you are 100x more likely to baptize a friend of a member, than the person’s door you just knocked on. But anyways yeah I think they help a lot, but there’s always a LOT more people could be doing.

Q: Is the range for income level of ward members narrow? (Are most in the same income bracket?)
A: Super poor - > poor. There’s pretty much no one in our ward with money. The Bishop runs his own car repair shop here in the bairro and he makes about 3000 rais ($1500) a month.
So he makes it pretty good for the slums of Lucia.

We didn’t have a ton of questions for Elder Blackford this week, but he had a lot to say anyway.

This last week was crazy, from losing our house and starting to find a new one, working with 2 areas, getting ready for the baptisms, and doing interviews ahhhh it was nuts. It was great today to see the report on our zone have the highest number of baptisms in the mission...for the 2nd time this month!!!

So we ran over to Novo Ja the area of the sisters, because one went home cause of a bad foot or something. So in 4 days we managed to find, and teach, and baptize Natalia. She has been frequenting church a while there, but her grandma never let her be baptized, we went there, talked her into it, got the form signed and BAM we taught everything and she was baptized. Bishop baptized her, but she asked me to do the gift of the Holy Ghost. AHHH I still have a lot of fear to do it. I have done 2 confirmations and like 3 blessings. I haven’t even ever done one in English! But anyways things went good; we have a lot of people in Jd. Lucia that will be baptized here soon.

We also got the sad news that he was finally being transferred! He really loved this area and became close with many people in the ward, but it isn’t surprising considering how long he had been there. He was sad though too.

But anyways so yeah...I’m being transferred...ahhh! So sad! I have already said goodbye to almost everyone...but I just got a phone call from Sandoval that he is a little ways away and because its pouring rain and everyone is using the busses and trains he doesn’t know if he can make it back in time. Craaap. But anyways it’s not going to go over to well tonight, last night tears welled up in my eyes. I didn’t cry ok? I’m just making lasagna...for what? But really I’m not crying. Anyways it’s going to be super-duper sad. But who knows if I will come back to this stake. So yeah...ugh today is too sad.

Yeah so I am super-duper sad, and I don’t want to leave but at the same time I feel like I need to move on and help other people. The elders will keep helping the rest of the ward...I hope!
But in the end, like always, there are a million more things to tell everyone but alas, time does not permit more time.

I’m sure he’ll love the people in his new area as well, but I’m also sure Gina and her boys will sorely miss Elder Blackford.

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