Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Happy New Year!

Yeah, I didn't get to talk as I wanted but w/e. I'll have it better figured out for the next time, the stupid phone had only a 15 minute battery and then she didn't tell me she had a cell phone that could do international calls untill later but w/e it was good talking. After I talked to you I talked to my mom and then it was about 10pm and the lady there made us stay and eat dinner with her family(yeah 10pm) pretty late, but she wouldn't let us leave without eating again. So we ate and then got home 10:40ish, but it was a good Christmas day.

Right now there is going to be a big party near my home and will go all night and will be lots of drunks everywhere, but we are having our own party at my district leader´s home and will spend the night there playing games etc... tomorrow will be bad and I don't think we will even work. I don't know why the president didn't change our p-day to tomorrow but w/e. I tried to make appointments with people for tomorrow, but everyone is leaving or will be drunk and asleep all day so like I said we have nothing for tomorrow.

All the homes I've seen and been in, have a special shower thing that has only two options very hot or very cold. (I told him Tate misses hot water more than anything, and has none) I personally like the hot better than the cold, but that's just me and my last home actually only had cold water and at times zero water. I got Stacie's package and it was perfect! I loved the office note book thingy. I will use it always at conferences and stuff for note-taking and I'm sure all the Americans will understand the humor in it, at least I do and the cereal was great too. THANKYOU!

New years: they party, music, drinking, probably shooting, I think somone will die....so you have 17 months to think about if you still want to visit this place. The way I see it is 3 americans walking around asking to get robbed. So church last Sunday was good, not too many people came because of all the parties and will be the same this week too. My new comp likes to do things a bit different when we work. We´ll go to a street and I'll knock the doors on one side and he´ll do the other side. I actualy like it a little because it gives me more practice of talking to people by myself and has gone well so far. We'll see how this Sunday goes. K well I'll try and get some photos n videos sent to you this week.

Love you all and feliz ano novo!

Friday, December 26, 2008

Brian's Christmas Day Email

Umm Feliz Natal,

Yeah I'll just talk to you on the phone, but I'm in the same area, new comp, E. De Campos. He's a black looking African guy that's like a little stick I could break, but a cool guy and a lot more fun than my last comp. Today will call from a member's cell phone and then you should be able to call me back. Don't you have caller id? Well I'll try to get the number for Brazil just in case you dont. My comps going to talk for 3 hours and so dont worry about time. Ummmmmmm so yeah, thanks for the gifts. It was fun to have stuff to open and I just gave the things I had double of to my comp.
K well talk to you later
Brian

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Excited to Call!

Ok well I think 2:00pm sounds good and is more convienent for others so if that's ok with you let everyone know that wants to talk to me. Julie can call the people in my family. I think I'll just call my dad and mom before that time so you don't need to worry about them. Some of my friends might come too like Mark n Jason n Henry...So I will call you from a member's phone here and then just call me back...that's the easier I think. And as far as time, no worries we'll play it as it goes...give everyone a chance to talk....I'll also let some of the other people here talk to you guys as well if you want...so 2:00pm I'll call.

So today we just got back from a zone activity. We rented a soccer place out and had a bbq and played soccer and american football. It was lots of fun and I got more tanned. Last Sunday we baptized a girl 14 yrs Mariana. This week we will baptize a boy of 14 yrs Gabriel, and next Monday we will have transferrs and on Tuesday I should have a new comp. Who knows maybe
I'll be transfered but I'm sure I'll stay here. I took photos and videos, but won't get them sent to you for a while. By the way have you put money in my account yet? I have 10 letters I wrote 2 months ago and still need to send and I would love to send 4 packages to different people, but it's 50 reais minimum for the smallest boxes just to send and more with buying the stuff to send because I send the good expensive candy...so pretty much for 4 boxs looking at 250-300 reais....so if you want to give me money to do this that would be awsome because I want to send Jared, his family, you, and my sisters stuff....and I want to buy me a Maceio jeresy, but that can wait I guess.

So that's awesome way to go Robert, you are the man! Grande Abraço para você! Sounds like things are going good and will be fun to talk next week. I might email in the morning to check and make sure you guys are all set on times etc so if you want to email me anything go ahead and Ill check it early. Next week is pretty much going to be a slack off do w/e you want kind of week with it being transferrs and Christmas so should be fun.
k need to go, love you all

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Brian Got a Christmas Tree!

Other package? I got a box with all the gifts and then a smaller one with beef jerkey etc....and I got one from Jared and his family and will open that on Christmas too...oh and I opened the calender you sent me so thx for that...when I looked at it I saw 1 year of my mission, many many days...Christmas....I think an hour should be good enough time. I'm pretty sure I'll be here in the same place for Christmas and you'll hear from my new comp and some of the members if you want...For email it depends on our day, like today we have nothing more to do right now so we are emailing for 2 hours, but on other days when we have other things to do we usually spend an hour. Last week, well we baptised 2 girls, Jessica e Tamires, both cousins. They live in the same home and the two hardest people I have ever worked with and hardest to baptize for me and my comp. We were so releaved after their baptism, we have been working with them for over a month and was a miracle they were baptised. I'll explain about them later on the phone but was a good week and have another girl we will baptise this week. We had stake conference and President n Sister Beynon spoke and had an area 70 there too. Was hard to get people to church but wasnt too bad. Today we ate at a family's home who we baptized and are going to baptize their grandma. They love us and wanted to feed us lunch before my comp leaves next transfer and so we could do it only on pday so that was today. They fed us fish, shrimp, chicken, rice, beans, noodles, coka-cola, was good and her son really likes me. He is 6 years old and said he wants me to baptize him and he held onto my arm the whole time and called me his dad and said he liked me better than his mom and grandma. Was funny so I guess I have a son now. We also went to centrol which takes 1hour1/2 to get there by bus and buses here are always crammed with people and I hate it. But we went there and I bought a Christmas tree and decorations just for you, so should be fun to set up. I haven't heard from Jared yet, but I did get his package. I need to send him one but I don't know his mission address or his parent's, but I think he's in Australia by now preaching the gospel doing an awesome job.

The weather I will explain....it's hot in the morning, afternoon is hotter, then evening it cools off and that's prime working time. The nights are pretty good but feels like there is less air flow at night so that's why I love having a fan. Lately it rained a little but not too much. It's also humid, but I'm used to it and don't feel it as much as I did the first few weeks here. But 80 degrees isn't too bad at all. Summer starts in a few weeks and I'll try and find out how hot it gets here to let you know. I have like 10 cards to send to people that I wrote almost 2 months ago, but w/e they'll get it when they get it. So I'll just call at a time when everyone is at home so remember I'm 4 hours ahead of you. Not sure what Tates timing is, and not sure how you want to do this because you guys will spend time opening gifts etc and other things and will be pretty crazy so just try and figure somthing out. I'll try and get more photos sent again of our baptisms etc and will decorate our home. I've given away some of the toys you sent me to some of the kids here and they just love them.

K well I love you and will talk soon.
Brian

Monday, December 1, 2008

Primary Presentation

Primary children smiling with Elder Souza and Elder Roberts
This one looks more realistic. Kind of like true Primary kids in the back.

Baptism's of Marleide, Cicero, and Anderson

Brian, Marleide (25), Cicero (12), Elder Souza, and Anderson (10) at their baptism
Looks like they had a little too much fun with the frosting from the cake.



I bet he loves wearing sandals when he can.

Busy with Baptisms

Brian's email is nice and long today, because when he started writing, he hadn't got my email. It made him write more. I should do that every week. Haha

Ok well today we had interviews with the president and I got a package and a smaller one with that and it said you sent them on Nov 15 and 19th, so are these the ones you want me to wait to open? Try to let me know before I open them....and I can’t believe they got here so fast, the last one you sent took over a month to get here so I guess you just never know how long it will take.

Well this past week we baptized Marleide (25yrs), Anderson (10), Cicero (12yrs), and I think Jessica sent you the photos of those baptisms right? This week we are baptizing Jessica (17yrs) and her sister or cousin Tamires (16yrs). My companion returned and he is doing better. His family still has a lot of problems and he’s taking things pretty good so far. The cool thing I don’t know if I told you in the last letter is that his mom was baptized during his mission about 6 or 7 months ago and that was before the whole cancer thing etc...but we know were she is now and she stayed firm the church to the end. So yeah this last week we got little work done because it was just me and another elder that doesn’t know the area and I had only been here for 2 weeks and so I knew little but we still pulled our baptisms through and got two more marked and ready for this week. So it was a good week and will have to really pick it up this week which will be hard because this week is stake conference and it’s hard to get people to a different church far away so well see how it goes. Yeah I guess Christmas is coming up....have any plans? ummm I don’t know what time to call you all but I think if I use a members cell phone and call you then you call me back and it should charge your phone...idk but let me know Tate’s plans and well work out times. Ummm....I almost threw up for the first time. My companion said it was because I ate too much but I think it was what I ate that did it, but it never came up so I just sat in my bed for a while until I feel asleep. All is well now though and so still haven’t thrown up yet. Oh yeah I invited my friends to talk with me on Christmas is that ok? Henry, Jason, Mark etc...Ok well let me know how things go, how is Granny? Happy birthday Granny! Happy Birthday to everyone else, new baby yet? Ok good bye love ya all hugs n kisses etc....Brian

Brian just got my email, so he is now responding to that.

K well to be fast, I don’t like to take pics of the areas because if a person see a camera he will steal it and so yeah..but for you I will try and sneak some pics but like I said it isn’t good to carry a camera around with you, when I take it to our baptisms I always carry it in my scripture case...but yeah I already took pics of the house just didn’t send them. (Can you tell I asked him if he could take pics of his area so we can see what it looks like.) Well I don’t think I’ll have a Christmas tree but we do have a Christmas fiesta on the 18th of this month so well see if they give us one or whatever we do I’m sure it will be fun....yeah Thanksgiving for me this year was just a normal day here.

Bruno is the 10 yr old we baptized, Luana is the 10 yr old girl we baptized two weeks ago. idk if you got the other pics yet of last Saturdays baptism but yeah I explained those people already.

So I'll go open the Christmas stuff but save the others for Christmas, don’t worry I don’t expect a lot for Christmas. I really just look forward to talking to you. That stinks that you were all sick...get better. Yeah I’ll have a new comp when I call home on Christmas but I'll be in the same area. I know this because in my interview with the president he said my comp has been here for a long time and asked me if I’m learning the area good and so that pretty much means I’m staying and he is leaving...but I’m excited. Only 2 more weeks of the transfer and then Christmas. The last week of the transfer we have one of the area presidencies in Brazil coming to visit our mission and the president said to be on best behavior, haircuts, suit coasts, etc...so will be a fun week. Sister Beynon is awesome. She made us smoothies today and it's always fun to talk to her...well love you all and need to go so thanks for everything and try and let me know when is best for me to call and when Tate is calling.

thx-Brian

New Photos from Maceio

We are excited to see Brian's smiling face. There is no explanation as to who these people are. Enjoy the pictures.

Brian and his companion, Elder Souza in their apartment.
Look it's the goose boy.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Elder Souza Leaves to Attend Mother's Funeral

Umm this last week was a little crazy, I found out last week after emailing that my comps mother has cancer and that he has been calling home every week the last 2 transfers to talk to his family and theres been alot of problems at home etc...and just monday his mom died and dont need to go into details but he ended up going home and in the mission i think the rule is you have 3 days to do what you need to do at home and then you have to return, so I think and hope he returns tomorrow night but we´ll see. Right now I'm with Elder Araujo and my old comp from the ctm and having a good time with them. We still worked in my area yesterday because we have three more baptisms this week on Saturday and maybe two more as well this week. Last week we did baptise Luana and Bruno and will have a member I know send you pictures of everything, so you'll get that later this week.

Today for P-day we went to the central part of the city to get money. That takes more than an hour by bus to get there so 3 hours about total there and back. It stinks but the only way to get money and we also visited the mission office to get mail etc...I saw President and Sister Beynon there. She gave us cake to eat and now I'm back in benedito bentes emailing you. My comp should be back tomorrow night my president said so I hope he'll be able to focus on the work and people we need to baptise, but he is taking it really hard right now so well see how things go. Thanks giving, when is it? dont think I'll eat anything for that occasion but we have a mission fiesta December 18 with everyone, so that should be fun. The language is doing ok. I understand a lot more and talking better, but could always be better. Yeah the president gave me money to buy two fans. That was 130 reais for both but well worth it and is alot more better now when I sleep.

Yeah I went to Baha Sao Miguel my last transfer with my district and was fun at the beach and thats were I burned my feet really bad and had to work with blisters etc...was fun. Tell everyone happy holidays etc...ask them for money:) hehe kidding but give them all hungs for me.

Love you all and you should get photos this week of our baptisms.
Brian

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Transfer to Hot Maceio

Ok well I need to be fast before my time ends...it wasn't the web site that lost everything, it was the computer place. After your time runs out you usually have all your info still there and you can just ask them for more time, but at this place it shuts everything down and even if you copy paste etc you lose it all so yeah and right now dont have much time to write because we have stuff to do today...So I am in Maceio, Benedito Bentes 1, Trabaleiro zona. My comp is Elder F. Souza. He speaks only Portuguese so I should learn a lot more of the languange from him. We have a 2-3 baptisims this week and a lot more we're working on in the next 3 weeks. It's really hot here and summer doesn't start for another month. My home is really hot too because we don't have fans and it's really hard to sleep at night with the heat and all the mosquitos buzzing around my face. I wake up every morning with my bed drenched in sweat and so I'm going to ask the president for money to buy fans because there's no air ventilation in my room. Umm I got your pakage and thanks for everything. Ummm I already bought the same razor you sent me and cost me like 50 reais, but thanks for it. Don't worry about sending a shaver it will do fine even though I hate using it. In my last area the baptism I was supposed to do was done last week by the other elders there now and they're working with the family and other man we were working with to be baptized. Yeah I really hate these computers here and need to find a better place to email...K well if you have anymore things you want to know, ask me and sorry for this short letter, but need to go do other things today.

Love Brian

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Lost His Email

Yeah I just wrote a big letter and had attached 2 pictures and during the last attachment my time on the computer ran out and so I lost it all, so I'm pretty upset about it.

Friday, November 7, 2008

Baptism in Arapiraca







Teeny Tiny Email

Ok I wont open it till christmas, no dont need a tree, cant think of anything else really just money cause im going to buy a new bible and a 8gig usb mem and a battery charger with rechargable batteries and more ties etc...so yeah if you want to help me buy these that would help. Transfer is next monday and thats when we find out where we go, but i think im leaving so well see. We had a baptisim last saturday and have another this saturday. Things are going good, thx for the photos and ill send some more to you today, whats grannys adress? They dont celebrate halloween here but they had their own holiday the day before celebrating when they were their own indepent state, i guess arapiraca was its own state at a time.

K well love you all -Brian-

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Photos from Maceio and Arapiraca

Getting ready to land in Maceio, after leaving the CTM
I have no idea what this is. Does anyone know?
This must be the new mode of transportation for Brazil. Haha! I'm not sure about the "date" setting on Brian's camera. I don't think he has figured that out yet.



Happy Halloween!


Ola’

Heidi sounds like you had fun at Homecoming, I never like dances or dancing at that and hey i still dont but glad you had fun! Yeah the church is on a corner and sounds like the place, its not in the center of the city and there are 3 churchs in the city and all of them are on corners after thinking about it. (I was trying to find where Brian lived on Google Earth) Yeah not bad timing (He is talking about a package he sent) i paid the extra 5 dollars to have it get there faster, and i like the coconut chocolate too and they sell these coconut aguá where they refrigerate the coconut and then put a hole in it and then you drink it from a straw, i think you would like it, its the purest water you can drink and really refreshing. Im not sure if Mark took the suits he wanted but you can call and ask him, i think he did and so you can do whatever you want with them, i don’t want or need them.


Yeah we see stuff about the elections everyday on the tv’s and all brazilians love barak obama and always ask me if I’m voting for him etc..which by the way you guys can vote for me if you want too.


Sounds like Tate is in a similar climate as me, not sure which is hotter but sure he is having just as much fun with it.


You said you want to know what i eat but i eat the same stuff everyday, but I´ve had chicken heart, feet, haven’t had pig stomach yet or intestines but thats only a matter of time, and was awsome last week the President and Sis Beynon treated us to lunch at labareda(nice resturante churrasco type thing) and we got her to eat chicken heart for the first time, was reallyfunny.

You mentioned monkeys I think last email and was funny after i finished emailing you there was a boy outside with a monkey and he said he bought it for 2 dollars! So what you need to do is buy a monkey for me ok?

Umm say hi and bye to the Chapmans for me, sounds like a lot of people are dying but has to happen to us all eventually. The pictures you sent me didnt come through except for the ones of heidi.

Yah Im not sure about how many people we'll be baptizing before this transfer ends which is next week but i think well have at least 1-3 because all the other people are just not exactly ready yet but will be next transfer.

Yeah we did alot of crazy stuff in the ctm and it just gets better in the mission hehe...well happy halloween, not sure if people in this city celebrate it at all, i know in sao paulo and other cities they do parties and stuff for it, and every city has its own holidays, like this week there is a holiday only here in arapiraca, not sure what it is but dont think well get much work done tomorrow because of it.


Did you already send my Christmas package and if not what did you send? Did Staci have her baby yet? Anyone else having a baby? What did you eat today?


OK well Love ya, Brian

Thursday, October 23, 2008

What Life is Like in Brazil

October 22, 2008

No haven’t been trampled by anything, there are lots of cats and dogs, horses etc...and yes godzilla lives here as well, but yea lots of lizards and big ones too, oh and like Jeff’s mission they have a lot of really cool birds here and a very common pet is to have and in this city not many but I’ve seen some people with a little pet monkey type thing, but the birds are really cool and pretty and they have the macahs and the country bird which i haven’t seen but I really want to is the tucan, they mainly live up in the amazons so i probley wont see them and to own one costs like 2000 dollars.

Church is at 9 in the morning, we spend from 7-9 waking and getting our investigators to church and then we go to priesthood and then to the class for recent converts and investigators where either the teacher called to that assignment or us the missionaries give the lesson, then last is sacrament meeting where is hard to see the reverence in the meeting but is just nice to be in a ward and have people to get to know, i know just about everyone because we eat lunch with them everyday. After church we go to lunch appointment and then if we have any other appointments after that we go to those and then every Sunday night we go to this awsome lady’s home where we share a message or lesson with her part member family and them we eat dinner, she make really good pastels and doughnuts and cake deserts etc...really good and look forward to that every Sunday night.

Normal day schedule consists of waking up at 6:30 and exercising (somtime), eating breakfast (cookies, cereal, etc), then shower and iron my shirt and get ready to study, i study from 8-11 and study the livro de mórmon for 30 min pmg (preach my gospel book) 30-60min study with comp in pmg lessons etc for 30-60min and then study w/e in the language for the remainder of time. Then for an hour if we have time depending where we eat lunch we go contact and find new investigators until 12 and then go to our lunch appointment from 12-1:30 usually and then take our dinner break to nap and get out of the sun and heat, 2:30 or 3:00 we go back out and go to all our appointments and find new investigators at the same time and any other meeting or appointments we have we go to as well, and do this the rest of the night until 8:30-9ish.

No I hate writing home because it takes forever to get letters home and then to get a response it takes forever, I just got a letter from Mark, but it took over two months to get here. so idk....i’ll try to do better at sending notes or letter w/e, I did send those 2 packages, one to you and the other to my friends 2 weeks ago. they have my photos in it so yeah save the photos for my return and hopefully you will get them. (I asked if he still writes to his friends very often.) The rain has stopped for the most part and summer is rolling in, so it won’t rain as much but it does at least once a week but not much. I wash my cloths in the washer and then i hang them on the string to dry, very simple and easy. Haven’t heard from Jared in a while but he is getting ready, i think he leave in 1 month or less and has been in china with his dad the last few weeks and has been arrested 2 there already hehe so yeah that’s probley why he didn’t email you back yet.P-day today was very boreing! We played soccer last night and today we played truco (a card game i like a lot), Went to another elders home and did nothing there, and so yeah you can see why it gets boring because we did nothing but we ate lunch in the central of the city and had an x-bacon filét which is an awsome hamburger and had madacuja to drink and now we are emailing. Other p-days we do stuff but today did nothing. No fast food here but in maceio they have a mcdonalds but it is in a mall and cant go in there, and another mcdonalds in the other state serguipe and that one you can go to but too far away from that. Not sure how many people live here, i guess in 2005 there was about 200000 people, yeah its the tobaco capital, just across the street of my house there is a small land of tobaco and you can find that in random places of the city but most of the really big fields are on the outsides of the city but are not far from were i live, and yeah everyone smokes etc...tobaco is a really big thing here...

Don’t remember my exact address but you can try to find the lds chapel on Belo vista rua (street) and then my home is just down the street from it and if you find the chapel you find my area so yeah if that helps, let me know what you find and what you think of my area…( I asked him if he could give me his address, then I could try and Google Earth where he lives to see his house and his street.) Yeah we live on a nicer street but some of the other elders homes are on dirt roads too and i actually like their homes better because it is so noisy on our street and the walls are not sound proof so you hear everything that goes on outside and in the other house, so for example you can hear the drunk people arguing, the loud music and every car and if you haven’t heard about the car that goes around advertising for political and advertisement stuff with load music etc...(Illegal in the states), it can get annoying when your trying to study or sleep but i love my home.

Only two more weeks of this transfer and already have interviews with the president tomorrow and seems like we just did that last week. We currently have a lot of good people we are working with, i think 9 people maybe 10 total/4men/6 mother or children and is awsome to see their progression and excitement. So yeah we haven’t baptised in over a month but that’s because we are saving them for the last week of the transfer and has been a miracle that we have found these people to teach and help prepare for baptisim. We have that family of 4 like I said and they get married next week, and then we have a member who’s sister and son and hopefully her husband we are teaching and will get them ready for baptisim as well, and there’s Sebastião and his wife that we have been working with for over a month and we were about to leave them but his wife told us she wants to be baptised but only if her husband is and he is having a hard time getting a testimony but with knowing that she wants to be baptised it should be easy to help her get her husband the desire for baptism, also have leandro another guy who has been coming to church for two weeks and now that i think about it, we haven’t even taught him yet...well do that this week and baptise him next....so were doing good so far and not a week too late, its coming down to the end of the transfer and i dont think i'll be here the next but well see how it goes. Ok well, is this letter long enough? (I asked him to be more detailed) I don’t think Ill be able to write this much again...K I love you all and let me know when you get the package
Brian

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Great Family Getting Baptized!

Elder Hill, Elder Roberts and Elder Moreno

Today for p day we got up at 5 to come to Maceio for my comps doctor appointment thing. Not sure for what but we waited forever and he was only with the doctor for 5 min and then we ate lunch and now are emailing before we take the bus back home, so i don’t have pictures to send now because i left that stuff at home.

The language is ok, I’m really no good at teaching yet but I’m understanding more. I think we teach alot of lessons. Last week we taught 30 total and I think our first week was our best with over 50 not sure exact number but our mission teaches alot of lessons. The kids here are cute, somtimes loud and distracting when we teach (most of the time). Interesting food? (I asked about what he eats every day) Rice, beans, meat, and cola sounds right, we eat with members everyday for lunch and on sundays lunch and dinner. I somtimes make my own breakfast and dinner like ham n cheese or cuscus, roman noodle type thing, cookies n milk (i dont like the milk here but I do like the milk from the cow, its the closest it comes to tasting like the milk from home and is cheaper than the milk you get at the store), hamburgers are good to make too. For the first time i bought frosted flake cereal and ate it last night before bed and was really good(cereal here is expensive, so for Christmas maybe some cap n crunch cereal? mac n cheese?) The ice-cream here is good too and different from american ice-cream and the churros here are my favorite. They fill them with duce de leite or chocolate with sugar coated its the best! Enough about food. Umm mosquitoes. (Then I asked how bad the mosquitoes were) Yes they have them year long, not sure if it gets worse but all depends where you live, some houses have more than others and the thing that keeps them off you is the fan. I have had dreams in portugues but the only thing is it is very crappy portugues and a little spanish too even though i dont know any spanish so figure that one out...He mentioned this because I told him I heard when you dream in the language you are learning that means you are getting pretty good.

Happy B-day Robert sorry the cubs lost right? Who won? Or is it still going? Thats sounds like perfect weather to me. I never know the temp here because they dont post it anywhere and dont have a tv and they do it in celcius and its just always hot in the morning and afternoon and doesnt cool down until around 3-4 in the afternoon when the sun starts its set...its only going to get worse though and more hot in the next 2 months and summer doesnt start until december.

Oh yeah we have this awsome family of 5 that we are going to baptize in 3 weeks at the end of this transfer and is awsome to see the progress they have made in just one week, They´ve given up smoking, drinking, and are getting married in 2 weeks which cost me 25 dollars but pretty cheap when you think about it for a wedding. Ive never seen a lady so excited! She calls us her two angels and just so awsome that her husband and two children agreed to baptism because it was originally going to just be her getting baptized. But two nights ago when we were teaching the whole family together for the first time they all agreed to do it together. We have some others we are working with and to mention this one couple. The husband loves me but they havent been to church in 3 weeks and arent really progressing and last night he told us he wouldnt give up drinking coffee so I dont know if we will end up baptising them. We tried just about everything with them so well see after this sunday if they progress or not.

Well I cant think of or remember much of any exciting stories from the past weeks but all is going well and already on the third week of the transfer! I think I´ll be leaving the next transfer but never know what happens. I just know the chances are that im getting a new comp which means one of us or both leave....Well thats it for this week, love you all and I did send a package home last week so let me know when you get it.

Brian

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Conference Week

Oi,
yeah we do teach a lot of lessons but to be honest i am in one of the hardest places of the mission! haha i think that would make kevin cry, so yeah i am grateful to be in a place where everyone believes in Cristo. most other missionaries in other zones are getting 8-10 average baptisms a transfer and there is one place in our zone called penedo were you can average alot more than that but im not there...so yeah i guess we are having sucess but could be alot better...Living conditions are well good I think, they all have flushing toilets i think and i mean idk they have electricity, its alot different from what we have in the states but livable. the weather is getting hotter i think idk but summer is december and when it gets hotter the people hear start wearing less clothing and becomes harder to teach but my comp said we will have to teach them to dress modestly, but even in the winter it didnt seem to me that they wore much clothing so we´ll see how it gets, their carnival here ive been told is hell on earth...conference was cool, we missed first session because we went to maceio for conference with the president for the lds and lzs and then returned in time for the second session, i watched all but the last session in portugues and thankfully was able to hear some in english. we woke up 5am for preisthood session sunday morning. Conference was good overall. And then monday we went back to maceio for zone conference with the president and i got my package and thanks for it, the cd player works and one other thing is they have ramen noodles here, its just called somthing different, and the president comes i think 1 or two weeks for the end of the transfer to interview us.

Hi mason, there are plenty of bugs here, Ive killed many spiders, caught many lizards(godzillas), rats, bats, etc....no monkeys but in one area called penedo in my zone there are these things that look just like monkeys and are really cool. Not sure what the temp is but is hot. love ya

k Well i think i found my way to stay a little bit in shape because ive been gaining weight but for the first time today ive lost 3 kilos which is alot and i think its from the soccer games we play every tuesday night, its fun and is the only running i get in the whole week. So well see if i continue to lose. Well i got the package im sending home and to my friends ready and if you want to help out with paying for them that would be awesome, its going to be expensive to send and i spent like 25-30 reais to make the pakages...idk beleza whatever works..I love you guys and thanks again for the goodies and prayers.

Love Brian
not sure if you got the photos i sent last week so i resent those also.were is ryan powell going on his miss? any others?

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Photos from Arapiraca

It looks like they are desperate for some female attention, doesn't it?
It looks like Brian found a girlfriend after all. But Brian, kissing is not allowed on your mission!


Helena (88 yrs. old) Jeorge (86 yrs. old) are baptized! Such a great young couple.


The bullet that almost hit Brian! We are sure glad he was watched over!

First Week of 2nd Transfer...still in same area


Hey nice long letter i loved it.....umm dont want to spend too much time writing because i need to put all my photos on a cd for you guys and prepare it for the package i am sending...Idk how much the pakage is going to cost to send but some money would help i guess and im also sending one to my friends and think youll like them...About pakages, well i still didnt get the last one you sent but i go to maceio next week for zone conference and hopfully i will get it there because if not it will be another 4weeks till i get mail again...christmas pakage..well my shaver hasnt worked for the last 3weeks and have learned to use my comps razor thingy and would be cool to get a cool razor thingy as well and an electric one like the one i used to have because its a fastershave for me and now takes me longer to shave..idk anything would be cool to get money etc....the money could help as well because we spend money to help our investigators in word of wisdom etc…ok enough about that.

Sunday was the last day of my first transfer and this week was the begining of my second! They did some changes to our district and now have two districts in this city and my comp is now the dl and i am a jr comp. We lost three people but gained 5 more and am looking forward to another transfer here. lets see christmas presents, well the only thing I can think of for the people is it is easy to burn movies so if you want to see if you can get me the dvd of mountain of the lord and if it has portugues on it or any other lds films etc...but i dont know if I’ll be in this area for christmas because the transfer date is two days before christmas so that will be funny if i have to move to a new area before christmas.

Today for pday we went to penedo again with the whole zone this time and spent the whole day there and went on a long hike through the jungly area and got muddy and messy but was lots of fun. So I probly have alot more I can tell but I need to get those fotos burned and no time really to do it so idk mabey my pakage will be a christmas pakage as well for you guys. K well love you all and will write more next week.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

I Almost Died!

September 24, 2008

oí mina familia,This week is my companions birthday so we made the trip to penedo which is his last and only area before me and we are just visiting all the people and elders here and now I’m emailing. Lets see my week....last night we played soccer with the members at the stake center and was alot of fun (they have soccer instead of basketball here at the church’s), saturday I baptised Helena and my companion baptized Jeorge and was just so awesome to see their excitement, and for their age it is pretty incredible (she is 88 and he is 86). I wanted to send a picture but cant at this place so next week I will. Before the baptisms we were getting a key from our bishop at the stake center and while we where standing outside his car a random bullet nearly hit us and was so weird and cant believe how close that was to hitting me. I think that is the closest I have come to death. I’ll send a picture of the bullet next week also. We ate at a Laberdoria for my comps b-day and was really good, I think they have one in Arizona I’m not sure never been but if they have one there that will be cool. Oh I love being out here in brazil and am growing accustomed to their ways of life and now call this place my home. Eu te ama e eu sei esste trabahlo e verdederia, meu português esta melhor e eu sou apprendando mas semente um mes aqui então eu teno mutio tempo apprender português. Well I guess I’m doing decent with the language according to others but I still feel like i know nothing and find it difficult to understand a lot of people and my messages and contacts really stink and think their just being kind to me. hehe k well I’m done blabbing about nonsense.

Oh yeah dogs, we had i think two weeks ago at night just a huge gang of them pass by us and then they turned around and came towards us and my comp just raised his Book of Mormon and they took off, but that was the first time that’s happened to my comp so it isn’t common that they do that. We have been doing really good this week and have already found like 4 really good families to teach and excited for that. Well it’s the last week of my first transfer and think I’ll still be here for another 1-2.

So yeah no package yet and will have a chance to see if it is there when i go to maceio in i think 2 weeks so hopfully it will be there then because if it isnt then that mean another 4-5 weeks before i get mail again.

Man like I said above with helping the people...I’m starting to see what it feels like to be a bishop. The people like to come to the missionaries to resolve their problems and it is just a weird feeling...idk hard to explain. But they are all good people and just hard to understand how they have problems, but don’t we all...anyways the mission is great and when i think about it I would rather be here than going to school and working etc...heheCool Tate´s in Honduras. Awesome for him. i want to hear how it is there and not fair that he got to call home, but yeah 3 months e nada.

I love being out here in brazil and am growing accustomed to their ways of life and now call this place my home. Eu te ama e eu sei esste trabahlo e verdederia, meu português esta melhor e eu sou apprendando mas semente um mes aqui então eu teno mutio tempo apprender português. Well I guess im doing decent with the langauge according to others but I still feel like i know nothing and find it difficult to understand alot of people and my messages and contacts really stink and think their just being kind to me. hehe k well I’m done blabbing about nonsense. So I love you and good luck this week. Sorry about Gavin that’s gotta be really hard and I have been praying for them every night, but is true that he is in the best place he can be in. I will continue to pray for his parents.

Well love you guys and will send pics next week.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Stake Activity

September 17, 2008

I feel so bad because I didn’t send Brian’s letter until this morning. However, of all days our internet went out so I couldn’t send it until 10:00am. I was hoping that I could send it before he sent his. Of course, wouldn’t you know it, he sent his earlier than he ever has, around 8:30am. At least he will know next week that I really did write. Oh well. So here’s Brian’s email:

Well how are things going at home? Hope all is well, things are going good here. Its always hard to remember all that happens in a week but thats how it goes. We got no one to church this week and can see how satan is really working hard to get our investigators not to come, i mean we spend all week with these people and they all tell us they are going to go and we visit them the night before and go to pick them up in the morning and then thats when all the excuses come and then their just plain lazy and sooo much contention between the people....when we returned to these investigators we were working with to get them and go to church we found them fighting and arguing with each other about i dont know what but was insane and we just left them there...these people are just crazy and need the gospel in their lives. So all of the people we visited sunday morning to go to church didnt go, but we did have George e Helena this elderly couple we have been working with go. They went with a member in our ward and we are going to baptize them this saturday and just really cool to see them excited for it and especially for their age. Its really funny to see that they still have a great sense of humor, they are in their mid 80´s and and is the guy that bore testimony last week if you remember. We met some other people that seem like they will prepare but not sure yet untill we work with them today so i will tell how that goes next week. Yesterday we had an all day stake activity where they rented out this place that has a big soccer field and swimming pool and patio with music and they had a huge barbeque with tons of food and soda etc...was alot of fun and my first time playing soccer with brazilians...man they are crazy and take the game too serious but was fun and i scored the first goal of the day and didnt realize the activity was really going to be all day, it went from 8am to 7pm, when they play soccer they really play and they play forever...and all the guys play, the bishops and everyone, idk how to explain the way they play but it was fun overall and now i am tired from all the playing we did. So yesterday was our p-day and today we are just emailing and getting back to work after lunch. Tomorrow the mission president and his wife are coming to our stake for a zone meeting and i feel like i wont be seeing a package yet but did you send it? Depending on how long it takes i might not get it for another month when we have another zone conference but w/e. because of yesterday´s activity i wasnt able to put my pics on a cd yet but im going to try my best to get that done and send a package home and another to my friends...man i hate our budget because i dont think they put bus fees and taxi fees into our budget and those things really rack up the sum of our money, we do get reimbursed for things that have a recite (receipt) for cleaning supplies and bus tickets but we have to send that to macieo through the mail and then takes his secretaries forever to reimburse us and by that time we are already broke, which is why i have been using my own money because when i first got here my comp was broke and we needed stuff badly for our home which was a big mess and then tickets to get to conference and district meeting, food etc...and then my comps b-day is coming up so i bought a jersey to give him and a jersey for me, and then there is candy that i really like that i bought so i mean i have been using some of my own money for this kind of stuff. so we have about 160Reais worth of recites that we are sending in sometime this week and more because we constantly use the taxis almost everyday. So its fun not having money and am still trying to figure out how to make my budget work so im learning and in the meantime have spent some of my own money on extra things...well i love you all and hope to hear from you next week and pray things go good. Brian

It sounds like Brian is going to learn how to Budget, huh? They learn so many great things on their mission, that they wouldn't learn otherwise. They really can live within their budget if they have to. I am sure he will figure it out soon.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

September 10, 2008

My first baptism-Kayse

My companion, Elder Guerra, Kayse, Brian and some unknown littl guy. Brian didn't tell us who he is.

September 10, 2008

Well I like to get the questions out of the way first so...3 investigators came last week, the ward is decent size and has a lot of great people (we do get fed every day for lunch by them), Kayse is awesome. I baptised him last saturday night and was awsome to see his excitment to be baptized. Not to sure on the status of mislayne, but like i said she seems prepared and not sure if my comp taught her the word of wisdom last night because we were on splits but I’m sure if he did she was ready for it (i hope so because she does drink alot). We didn’t teach english last week but we are tonight i guess. Jared leaves in november and goes to the mtc in Hamilton, New Zealand. So more about the people, A lot walk, a lot drive their little cars, you see people using their horses, taxis, bikes, motortaxis, buses. I´ve used all except the horse...the weather is well sometimes bearable and most of the time just wet and humid and muggy feeling most of the time. You sweat a lot and just i dont know if they have seasons here, but not summer for a few months...nice when it rains but then after its worse so idk (I don’t know)...when i sleep at night it a lot of times feels wet and damp but I’ve gotten used to it and nothing i can do about it. Don’t carry water with me, just my backpack, if I’m that thirsty I’ll ask someone for water and hope it is good water. There are dogs everywhere, and cats, lizards, bugs, etc...we have only found one angry dog so far that wanted to chase us but was chained...there are some streets were its dark and we have to be carefull and only speak Portuguese because they will rob you they think you have money and stuff (first week here another two elders in my district had their house broken into and his camera was stolen and so we spent a morning helping them move to a different home and he has been robbed at night to where they take his watch and 5 reais (money), Yeah the streets are pretty dirty and more in other places but yeah you will see water draining from all the homes into the streets and people dont care to through away trash so you will see a lot in some areas, depending on the area most people here have concrete or tile floors and if it is a poor area they have dirt floors. A lot of the homes I’ve seen can be pretty bad in terms of mold and just stink and filthyness. well I think that was all the questions...Very long week...did a lot of stuff...we hade a big service project with the stake were we spent all day at a school painting, and cleaning, and doing just about everything to make it look like a school, was fun and i got a little burned on my neck but feels better now. Church we had i think 4 investigators attend and one of them is an elderly couple and the husband went up and bore his testimony and said a lot of good things about the church and yeah we have baptism dates for them and my comp told me last night that during our splits yesterday they scheduled another one, not sure who but i will find out tonight. Tuesday night we went on splits with our district leaders, so I spent that night and all day yesterday with my dl in his area and was alot of fun. Today we went and did service for a member cleaning up her yard and weren’t happy that our dls made that appointment on our p-day but we got it done, so yeah fun week. i think 3 more baptisms to come and hope to find more this week!Thats really cool about the new callings and sorry you guys are sick. Lucky me i haven’t been sick once yet and have had no problems. I was going to send pictures of the baptism but forgot my card reader so i will do that next week and not sure if I’ll get to sending the cds of all my pictures today but will try my best. The other guys want to go play football, I’ll see what my comp wants to do and I’m hungry right now so I’m going to go eat. The food is awsome, great bread, pastels, fruit, when we are poor we buy this thing called cuz cuz and is not that bad its like only 25cents and can feed two people. Umm cant think of much else but how is the ward doing? i think parker is due to leave and where is ryan powell going? How are the deacons? Its amazing how much of the langauge i have learned in the first three weeks and just never imagined myself here in brazil doing missionary work....Im having alot of fun and just love my district and the mission. Well I love you all and if you can let me know the status of the package, i miss listening to my mo tab because my comp has his mp3 thingy but not much music so we listen to the same stuff every day!!! Gets boring....anyways thanks for all the prayers and love
Brian

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Getting Ready for His First Baptism




September 3, 2008

So, its Olá in portugues but that is formal, most brazilians use tudo bem/bom, and here in this state at least all the people greet with just any wierd loud noise, it is so funny and took me a few days to get used to and be able to do it. It sounds kinda like this oooopa! or uuuoopa! And to they also use Beleza or tranquill (what up or chill)or hapaz ( used for just about anything and can mean anything but translation i think is of course or something like that). Well lots of differnt greetings and kinda just depends on the situation of the greeting. I use all of them all the time. (I asked if Hola, was what they say in Portuguese.)Sunday could have been better, we only had 3 come to church and still are going to do our baptism this week with kaysee, he is 14 years old an awesome kid and really prepared for it. Another person really prepared is mislayne, we werent too sure how we were going to teach her but like i said she is prepared and without bringing it up she said she wanted to be baptized but didnt think she could because she isnt married and she told us she was going to explain all of that to her boyfriend when he returns from Sao Paulo and if he doesn’t want to get married she will leave him and get baptised! we were so amazed at how well prepared she is and to make it better last night we visited her and as we were leaving she asked if she could pay tithing without us even teaching her anything about it so we smiled and explained a little about it and will teach her more tomorrow. So overall we had an awsome 1st week but this last week all of our numbers have been cut in half and has been a bit frustrating, the people have been hard towards us lately and so we are trying new things and we have felt the need to work with the members so tonight we are teaching english to members and investigators and every other week on Saturday nights we are showing the Joseph Smith film. My companion, Elder Guerra, Awesome guy, he has been out for 6 months now, im his third comp and he has had only americans so he has improved his english alot and is really good guy and is from sau paulo.We wake up at 6:30 and in bed by 10:30. The bus trip from Maceio to Arapiraca is 3 hours and not an overnight trip sorry for the confusion, the overnight bus trip is to a different area in the mission. Well lucky me we have a washer but helps to have water to wash my cloths in :)The first week here we had zero running water for three days, the owner said it just goes off sometimes and happend to another elder in our zone as well but it came back on and we were so happy to have it! But there are two different water sources and the one that is for the washer is almost never working so when it does work we use it. My shoes are fine but are impossible to keep clean so i just try to clean them before leaving the home but they always get muddy after an hour of being out there. I’m starting to know my area better and the city and can see my improvements as each week goes by.So about our pdays, there are three games a person will learn to play if you come to brazil, 1 Truco, 2 Uno, 3 War, we have played all three every pday thus far and is really fun. I get to eat this really big hamburger they call the X-Tudo wich has egg, ham/cheese,bacon,hamburger,hotdog,lettuce etc...and for a drink a fruit of my choice and they make it fresh and give you like a liters worth and all of this for i think like 3 american dollars. The best!Well Emily and Heidi, i forgot to give you that list of cds i wanted. In itunes i have some music to burn, it is to listen on my pday: Transformers soundtrack, bourne idenity st, lord of the rings st. (should be in itunes) Obligado and also if you could buy me some christmas music, i know my brother jason told me to take christmas music with me but i didnt know why? but i love listening to it (dont ask me why but i just love it)so any really cool musical christmas music you think i would like please get as well. Thank you soo much. Remember the music is for my pday and will not distract me from the work and is legal to listen to down here. Well still have time to write more so...yesterday for lunch we had to take a bus to another city because that is were the member lives and i guess the church is not established out there so yeah it was about a 3 hour lunch appointment and i think we spent more getting there and back home than was spent on the meal itself, but was fun and one thing we have started doing is taking all our photos and the people just love to see the kids and think they are just adorable. Don’t really want to send photos this week, the internet here is really slow and takes forever to upload a pic and to see a picture so i will have one next week and am almost done with my first chip so when i finish that one up i will put it on a cd and send it home. Another funny story is we meet this guy that said he would go to the church and that he thinks it cool but that he couldnt go because he has to work and we asked him who he works for and it turns out he works for our bishop selling pirated movies. Kinda sad when you think about it but in brazil no surprise i guess and they have really no rating system for movies so i mean you’ll see kids watching groosome movies. Alot happens in a week and cant explain alot of it but the work goes on and looking forward to another week of it.Well I love you all, please burn those cds for me, I will be sending pics next week, and Até mais from brazil or thau Eu amo vocês!

Sunday, August 31, 2008

1st week in the field

August 28, 2008

Well 1 week down a lot more to go...
So much happens in a week that I don’t know what to say.

First, yesterday i didn't have p-day because it was our zone conference with the mp and that happens every 4-6 weeks and when that happens we take the 3hr bus trip to Maceio and spend all day there and then 3hrs back home and then have our p day the next day which is today.

About the games, we can play games on pday and is something our district does every p day. and i wanted to give emily a list of cds to burn for me if thats ok...

I also got the package with the sd card reader on it so i will post some pics here and thankyou soooo much for the goodies, the gummie bears didnt last long and was nice to read all the letters on that 3hr bus trip, I only get my mail every 6 weeks when I go to zone conference unless I get transfered to maceio but i dont think that will happen for a while.

So about this week, We have talked to so many people, knocked or clapped on many doors, invited all to church, etc...we got 6 people to go to church out of the like 50 that said they would go, and out of those 6 one boy that is 16 asked us when he can be baptized so we were excited for that (doesnt happen everyday) so we will baptize him next saturday and two of his other friends want to go to church this sunday and i have a good feeling about them as well. It takes 3 weeks to baptize someone because they have to go to church at least 3 times. another that came is a girl I think 17 or 18 and she said she would prepare for baptism after we taught her the first lesson but I’m not too sure if she will truly commit, then we have the mother and her i think 3 kids come one 8 the other two infants but when we taught her she said she would be baptised or prepare for it and we felt really good about her but then we found out she is not married to her husband and that he is currently in sao paulo and wont return for a few weeks...yeah she might take a while to baptize but I’ve heard weddings here are fun and make you broke but well see were that one goes over time. So thats our success for the week thus far. So much more has happened but i cant think of how to explain it.

Believe it or not but I’m still gaining weight, I just dont get it, i exercise every morning and for being in the poorest state in brazil and in one of the poorest cities of my mission and all the walking...but I must say that the food here is awsome! We eat lunch with members every day and sundays we have both lunch and dinner, alot of part member families and awsome people. They make amazing meals all the same tho, consist of rice beans spagetti carne and for drinks its cola or gaurana or succo. oh yeah and somthing i like they serve us is coffee... before you freek out its called ceveda and i dont know why but its a drink members are allowed to drink and tastes just like coffee but i dont think it has any caffeen in it and is i guess healthy i dont know but that i get to drink it and it is not that bad.

So for breakfast me and my comp usually have just had cookies but depending if we have the stuff we make ham and cheese and the bread here in brazil is just awsome. Lunch is always good and by the way i think i gained 2 kilos in this first week! Dinner well we skip alot and just work instead and somtimes use that time in the afternoon to take a siesta when most people are napping but not always somtime we will have appointments.

Jared got his call, hes going to melbourn austrailia!

The language justs gets better even though i still cant speak it well i understand more than i can speak...but all the missionaries just told me it takes that first 2 months to be able to understand it all and then another 2 to be able to speak it. The people here speak the language all mumbled and as fast as they can and dont pronounce all their words correctly, its tuff to fully understand them and they always want to hear the american speak, i hate it sometimes.

Speaking of people we are teaching alot of what we call snakes in the mission and they always want to know if I have a girfriend and I just tell them I do so that they dont get any ideas. So, Heidi and Emily I need a girfriend for the next 22 months, so if you can help me out by setting me up with one of your friends or finding me someone, she needs to be able to keep commitments(22months), preferably lds, cute, sense of humor, I need a picture to and thanks for the help!
I know I said I wouldnt have a girfriend untill after the mission but its necessary for in brazil.

More about the city, people still use horses as a form of transportation, we somtimes use the motorcycle taxis which is alot of fun, alot of dirty places but like i said alot of good people and all are polite. I think its still winter here and it somtimes just feels like summer but ill have to wait and see what summer has in store for me.

I heard the D-backs are doing good and that brandon web set another record if you wanna keep me posted on that. I think its the last month of the season and then playoffs!

So, Im really enjoying the food well except the dessert, if anyone ever comes to brazil you will know what i mean, the desserts here are garbage and so decieving but they have good candy! Ill keep you posted on our baptisms and will take pictures when they happen, its been slow here because were all new to the area and have just barley touched the surface and like i said the rule is the people have to have gone to church 3 times to be ready for it. Well ask me any questions and Ill be happy to answer, thanks for the photos, the girls are all cute and looked like a fun sleep over.

Love Elder Roberts

Pictures of 1st Area & Companion

This is my washing machine & scrub sinkMy bed is the blue one


My companion Elder Guerra

Thursday, August 21, 2008

President and Sister Beynon

President and Sister Beynon


The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints
BRAZIL MACEIÓ MISSION OFFICE
Av. Dom Antônio Brandão, 333, Sl: 402, Bairro Farol, Maceió - AL 57021-190

Maceió, August 21, 2008

Dear Loved Ones of Elder Roberts,

Greetings from the Brazil Maceió Mission. Your son recently arrived in the mission and we wanted to send you a picture taken on his first day. Thank you for the gift of your son for this two year period. The first weeks in the mission field are challenging, but he is excited to face them. We are so grateful for your role in his preparation. We are confident that he will perform a great and marvelous work among this openhearted people in the states of Alagoas and Sergipe, which make up our mission.

We kindly request that you write to your son regularly. He should soon be sending to you his apartment or house address. All missionaries should write to their parents once per week. This is a mission rule. Each missionary will be allowed to call home two times per year on Christmas and Mother’s Day.


MISSÃO BRASIL MACEIÓ
Rua Dom Antonio Brandão, 333 sala 402
Ed. Work Center – Farol
Maceió, AL

57021-190


Thank you for supporting your son in this sacred work. Many children of Heavenly Father will become members of the Church of Jesus Christ through his hard work and sacrifice. We know that both he and you will be blessed for this service. We will do our utmost to help your son achieve his dreams and to further the building of the kingdom of God in this part of His vineyard.
Sincerely,

President Gary Beynon

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

First week in the Field

August 20, 2008
K well i made it to maceio at around 2pm along with 5 other elders 4 americans 2 brazis. The mission pres and wife and other elders were there to pick us up and we all went to the mission home. We ate an awesome home made meal that made me realize that the ctm food was não bom and then was got to meet each other while we each met with the president. You probley got our picture by now and not sure if he told you where i am right now. After all that was done he told us our new companions and the first four all had their new comps there at the home waiting for them and then he looked at me and my comp (his comp from the CTM) and kinda laughed and said onibus which meant long trip to your new comp.So my old comp got the exciting 2 day bus trip and i got the one night bus trip. He went to estencia in the state of sergipe and I was sent to arapirca!So I was in maceio for no longer than 5 hours and now am currently in arapiraca. So far, since the plane landed it rains every 10 minutes and this city im in is mostly dirt roads except where the shops are. I met my comp elder guerra after waiting at the bus stop for a bit and two other elders were with him. It was his first day there too and so were both new to the area and really havent unpacked anything at all, in fact ive only been in our home for no longer than 20 min...last night we dropped my stuff off ate the dinner they gave me and then asked if i wanted to sleep or play war(risk board game). i was kinda tired but i havent played games forever so i was all for it. so we got a taxi to the other two elders home and we played war until about 1am and then went to bed. we did the same thing this morning for our pday and just messed around at their home. Oh yeah the other two are brazilian as well and my distric consists of 9 people 3 americans, i havent met any of them except for these two. The church is a street down from my home and can see it from our stairs. I havent taken any pictures yet but will have some for you next week hopefully. i have alot on my mind and things i have to do so might be a while before i figure out how to send a package to you with a cd of all my pics and videos. ohh and if you havent sent me the package yet could you add 2 decks of uno cards please...the brazis love that game and is practically a rule to play it every night. So tonight at 6 will be my first real work except the fact that me and my comp are both new to the area and have no appointments and know nobody and so i think we are just going to figure out our area before we do much, but I’ll let you know how the first week goes. my pdays are the same every wednesday. Yea craig i will be doing my own laundry, i think i saw what was a automatic washer not sure but they also have buckets for that too and we hang dry our closes, we have a small stove, refrigerator, the home is pretty small. Only one light was working i think the others just need new bulbs. K so thats whats going down so far; morning I’m in the ctm and that same night I’m in a foreign land but the air is clean and is so much nicer than in a big polluted city like sao paulo. I love it here and am doing my best to learn from the other elders. To answer the other questions im not sure about how long elder guerra has been out but long enough to train someone. He is i think the same size as me. Most brazilians are small tho, he understands quite a bit of English, but never uses it unless i have trouble saying something. The weather is beautiful, it is a lot more humid but has been nice so far and cant wait till the summer hits. Im sure after a few months I’ll have the language down. So i just need to take my mission pres advice and just survive. He is an awesome guy and i love his wife, all she wants to do is take care of us and feels like another mother for me. So here i am 3 hours from maceio and will tell you when my next baptism is! Hah at the mission home they had me demonstrate a street contact but one where i invite to church and baptism in the first contact which is not what they teach in the ctm, but the people here are really acceptive to it i guess and missionaries have been having great success so I’ll see how it goes.Well i love you all and tell granny hi and i wish here well Elder Roberts

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Last Week in the CTM

August 13, 2008

Well I leave next tuesday morning, not sure what time but we fly out there on i think a 4 hour flight and when we get there we go to either the mission home or some kind of meeting where we have an orentation kind of thing and we get new comps and meet the president. Im not sure on too many details but i know we have meetings on sunday and monday were they will probley tell us what we are doing. Im not sure when my p-day will be but is fun knowing the next time i write you i will be in maceio. Jared wrote me and told me still no call, his papers have been in for 6 weeks now and says it can take months because people in this wicked world have no respect for the beautiful nation of New Zealand and think of it as the scum of the earth...that is blasphemy! But i hope he gets it and is called to brazil...Thats cool, tell david phelps congrats and what about the other guys in the aspen ward, ryan powel? any others?

Last friday we went proseylting at the metro station again and it rained the whole day but made it fun and exciting and got to test out my umbrella and worked out great. I dont want to brag but that day was the best my comp and i have done out of the three times we´ve gone and placed the 6 boms we had on us and could have given more if we had them on us. Almost all the people we talked to listened to us, understood us and seemed interested and we even once again had a guy come to us asking about the church and the bom and told us he wanted one and that he had meet some missionaries before but didnt have the book, we just meet many people that day(while in the rain)and felt really good about them all. I dont think there was a minute wasted that day not talking to someone, it was awsome.I can say that i can see improvement in the language every week and hear that it improves faster in the field. I think Im ready as I can be, Ive done my best and know its going to be 100times harder out there but the language will come in the Lords time and ill have my new comp there to fix my mistakes. To give you an idea of where im at with the language, the president said that on a scale of 20-100 every elder would get at least 20 through the ctm and some would get 90 and some 50 and some 30. I would say i got probley 35 wich isnt terrible but not even close to the best. There are some in my district that i would say are at 80 because of the spanish classes they took but again I feel Ive done my best and that the Lord will make up the rest.

Thanks for the pictures, I just love to see the kids and the family and I find myself missing the olympics, we tell our instructor to inform us on all the events and medals etc..and cant believe the u.s. is losing to china, but they´ll beat them at track. Umm i dont know if you read the part about needing a card reader so that I can continue sending pictures in the field but that would be nice to have.

Its been awsome going to the temple weekly and will miss it for the next 20 months but ive decided if you and robert cant come to brazil because ive heard that because of visa restrictions etc that parents cant come pick their sons up but if thats the case then i say we go to utah and go through all the temples, that would be a fun trip to do either way.This week is going by fast and the real work is about to start, so I think the next time i write you I will have gone through a week in maceio so it should be interesting. Mom I love you guys and know this gospel is true with all my heart and cant wait to share it with the people the Lord has asked me to and know its going to be some of the best experiences of my life. I love you all and will talk to you again, this time in maceio!

Less than 2 weeks in the CTM

Brian standing in front of the Campinas Temple

Tyler Orme, Tate's friend from Hawaii, with Brian at the CTM

The Brazi's left the CTM and this is the rest of Brian's floor without them. Brian looks like he is having a lot of fun. If you can't find him, look for the blue shirt.

August 6, 2008

Well it’s almost that time and I’m not sure what to expect but I’m sure Ill let you know how it goes when the time comes. Today just my district went to the Campinas Temple and I was able to get the instructor to take a picture of me on my mem card on her camera. Yesterday we got rid of half the brazi´s on our floor and the other pic is of half the people on my side of our floor and the last pic is of me and Tyler Orme. I’ll send it to Tate as well. Umm I’m going to give Jared my address so that we can both keep in contact during our missions just like I will with the other missionaries in my district. Yes my cd player broke, I don’t know how or why but it just doesn’t work at all, and if you send me one please add a card reader so that i can send pics throughout my mission and maybe another mem card por favor.I just love Tate’s picture with the kids, its the complete opposite of mine :)I would write really long letters but I’m a boring person and there isn’t much to do in the ctm, though your right about missionaries doing stupid stuff and we do do a lot of stuff but Ill save that for another year or two. I took pictures and videos of all the dumb things we did. I´ll share one story tho...we spent the whole day one day convincing one of the elders in my district that another elder in my district was really mad and depressed because his package didn’t get here yet and that he was contemplating going home...this elder believes a lot of stuff and is very gulable so it worked out perfect...its a really long story because we spent all day doing this but in the end we made it look like that elder tried climbing out the window and fell all the way down to the bottom floor and elder Howard just freaked out, it was funny but hard to explain all the details... we just do dumb stuff like that.I didn’t get any mission ties so just everyone forget doing it and stick with dear elder because I am getting those and should be able to get those out in my mission right?Umm we have saturday night devo with just americans and thats all in english, then sunday night devo with everyone and that in both languages, and tuesday night devo with everyone in both languages. At all devos we either get a stake president or mission president or someone that is serving the ctm to speak to us and have all been good thus far...my favorite ones are on sunday because we all get to sing the brazil anthem which Im trying to learn, its not an easy song.I stick with my district till the day we depart, there has been new american and brazilian missionaries reporting and leaving every week thus far and always alot more brazilians than americans and we also get afican groupes too.Umm no tortias but my instructor said they do import them but not as much and their really expensive and cheese is expensive too.I think we go to the muesum friday and that will be my last time proseylting till I leave. Elder santos or Obama wrote a letter to us the other day, he is in Juan Pesoa and said he baptized someone his first sunday there and said his district has a rule that everyone baptizes every week. I really looking forward to going out there and having to speak nothing but português. Today the temple session was all in português and was really hard but fun at the same time.Well sorry I cant think of much to write, Im sure Ill have more exciting stuff like when I baptize someone but I love you all and appreciate all the support and love you give me.Elder Roberts

Thursday, July 31, 2008

More Pics from the CTM

Finally getting his first package! Yea!!!
Brian with one of his instructors

Brian and most of his district. Notice how tall he looks. Maybe he grew already. Either that, or his district is pretty short.

Week 6

Hello family,K I think I have the whole mail thing figured out now, last thursday I recieved my dear elder letters and think that that will be a good way to do it when I get to Macieo 3 week from yesterday! Like i said before the mail delivery in brazil is the worst and the delivery workers go on stike all the time so their mail gets helded back and just piles up. I also recieved the package yesterday and will show some pics of that, thankyou soooo much for the treats and pics. I also recieved the 25$ and that will be more than enough for the next 3 weeks. So mission ties work best untill im in maceio in 3 weeks then dear elder, if that makes sense.Jared I was very happy to get your letter and find out that your papers are in, I Want you to Email me when you get it. (Email Nanette at nbrinton1@cox.net so she can give you the email address) You have special permision to do this and it sounds like new zeland is lots of fun. Im praying you get sent to Brazil because theres no better place to get sent to than here. Let me know everything and give me your email, Mom dont freak out we are missionaries and my comp likes to spend 2 hours every pday to email and it gets very boring. Mark i have not yet craped my pants but you will be the first to know when that happens, Craig and Mark my suggestion to you is take spanish classes and study hard because chances are if you learn a language it will be either spanish or somthing similar to it and will bless you greatly when trying to learn português.John thanks for the words of encouragment, sounds like your bored there but your making the best of it and brazil is awsome and im glad I could start it here than in provo tell erin hello and eu ama vocêWell again I didnt go to the Musem last week but instead my distric went to what we call Wall Street, really called Polista Ave, tons of busy people and your message has to be fast or they wont listen and will just ignore you. It was fun but only placed 1 bom and like 10 cards, I found it easier to give my message as we cross the street so that way they have nowhere to go and my message really is´nt that long so I would just talk to them as we waited and as we crossed, I can understand what they say but cant explain well what I want to say and made me sad when this one guy told me that after crist died so did all of the commandments and his church etc...I couldnt explain much to him but that christ is our redeemer and that his church is on the earth again and that we are lead by a profet of god and gave him a free dvd about christ, he didnt seem that interested but keept on talking for a long time about not needing commandments and christ death....but there were lots of people that did like our message and that listend and some of the other elders in my district had some bad luck to were a person grabed the bom and threw it in the street where it got ran over, the elder just smiled, picked it up and gave it to someone else.Went to São Paulo temp again this morning, and has been a good week. I can se my imrovment in the language after going proseylting. I dont remember if I told you, my branch pres told me that in last month alone they called 45 new bishops in my mission, it sounds like my mission is growing fast and that ill be teaching alot of people, and pray ill be ready for that in 3 weeks. The weather here is well middle of winter and im only using my 1 sheet if that explains what im in for...and i herd that some parts of my mission ill be using a hammock and no tie and ill be doing my laundry by hand hehe.Emily I got your letter and Only can tell you to be nice to Gemma and let her brake all the reeds she wants to, take money from my bank acount it helps, you can get mad at mason or tanner but not gemma. and i love eu ama você and remember that if you love me keep my commandmentsSo yeah mother dear I am expecting an email from jared next week and from you, dont worry about the length of your letters, like I said it doesnt take me long to type and my comp takes forever. I thought I sent you a pic of him and me so ill send you another.Heidi thanks for taking the time to say anything your awsome, and jeff sorry i didnt do that for you when you were in argentina heheOhh and I think Ive gained like 6 pounds since ive been here but i blame the lack of my daily exercise, we spend all day sitting a class room and eat 3 times a day your bound to gain weight.So cant really think of much except that my cd player just stoped working a few weeks ago and if you send me a new one im not sure if it will make it...i guess if you want to buy me a cheap one that will read burned cds and if you do I think send it to my mission because thats were ill be by the time that thing makes it into the city and it might come in handy for me to have a card reader so i can continue to send you pictures through email when i get to my mission and if possible mabey another sd card por favor, obligadoK well pictures are from today and yesterday so enjoy and I love you all,Elder Robertsjust a picture of me and all my goodies, the one with me and just one guy is one of my instructors, he lives here in sao paulo north and served in this mission he is of italien background and a cool guy, and the other is most of my district.And speaking of forieners the ctm here get groups of africans, the church sends its african missionaries here to be trained, and then send them back to their missions in africa, most of them speak like 4 diff languages mainly french english portugues and whatever african language they speak, so its very diverse here in this country and in the ctm and I heard there are alot of black people in my mission so jared tell peter that im practically in africa.

Friday, July 25, 2008


Brian thinks this elder looks like Obama