SÓ TEMPLO!

First of all, it sounds like Lacey is living in some kind of high-intensity and slightly ironic action film.

Second, Elder Bradshaw, secretary of the Long Beach California Mission should be sending you a check for my bike soon (or maybe you already received it).

Third, congratulations Isaac with your new job and Kimmie and David (and especially Isaiah) with the baby blessing. Good luck moving.

I love seeing pictures of our family! They are so uplifting! I´m not sure how I feel about opening my email and seeing a picture of a dead boar…

This week we had a mission conference to discuss the vision of President Dalton… or the Vision of our mission and how we will accomplish it. What is becoming our motto is SÓ TEMPLO! and our mission scripture is Alma 26:26. I love the motto só templo, or in English… ONLY THE TEMPLE. The first presidency made a new rule that all missionaries must teach the 5th lesson (laws and ordinances, essentially about the temple) in entirety before baptism. Before I got here (or really, President Dalton, although it was the same week), the Brasil São Paulo Missão was baptizing a lot. However, retention was slipping and a lot of missionaries had the vision of “SÓ BATISMO”, which is contrary to the plan of God. The purpose of missionaries isn´t to baptize people, the purpose of missionaries is to help others make it back to their Heavenly Father. When the people we are teaching understand that they can help their antepassados (I think the word in English is ancestors but I don´t remember), they will have much more desire to be baptized and stay strong in the church.

This week, Elder Mesquita and I have been focusing principally on two things: Getting investigators to church and setting baptismal dates. We have been really diligent with this, but I´m learning that often the blessings don´t come in the places we are expecting.

If you remember, last week I talked about Karen. Holy cow, Karen is awesome. We met with her super late Wednesday night and had to leave our lesson early to make it back to our house on time. We taught the Restoration and then when before we invited her to be baptized she already said yes. Later in the week she told us she felt like she had been waiting for this her whole life. She had a date set for August 23, but (as we warned her) Satan was trying his hardest with her and she was called into work on Sunday. But she has the determination to bat off the feeble attempts of Satan. I think we will move her date to the 24th instead or the following Saturday.

Also, we contacted a guy named Everton one day during the week. Everton is living with his girlfriend (surprise surprise), but he really wants to be married. We taught him the law of chastity on the street and taught about how we can help him be married. Then we returned the following day and taught the Restoration. When we asked him if he had heard of the Book of Mormon, he said, “Yeah… just a second”. He ran into his house and returned with an ancient copy of The Book of Mormon in hand and said “I was actually reading it last week.” We were dumbfounded. He then said, “I believe already believe I need to be married and baptized. Last week, my girlfriend and I were arguing. I prayed to know what we should do. Then, I met you in the street and you taught me the law of chastity. My girlfriend is doing a project on historical books and she decided to research The Book of Mormon. And then today you taught me about the Book of Mormon. Obviously God is telling me this church is true.” Again, even though we warned him about the temptations of the devil, he and his girlfriend missed church on Sunday. We don´t know why yet.

We also had a guy named Antonio show up at church on Sunday with his girlfriend (who is a recent convert) that was attending the wrong ward but wants to be baptized.

Much more happened this week, more than I have time to write. I love everyone. Fique firme!

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