Wednesday, December 4, 2013


I was transferred from Pioniero 2, Barcarena, to Castanheiro, Cabanagem. I am very excited to serving here and am loving my first week. My companion is Elder J. Santos. There are a lot of Elders with the last name Santos, so usually they put the first letter of their middle name on the name tag to differentiate. Elder J. Santos is awesome! He is a really fun guy who loves to work hard and have fun. He also teaches really well! He always knows just the right response to thoroughly answer the needs of an investigator.

He also is a very young missionary! Not in age, but in time on the mission. He only has the 12 days in the Brazil MTC and 2 other transfers in this same area. I have two other transfers in different areas and also the 6 weeks in the MTC. So actually my trainer has less time on the mission than I do. What?

Walking down the street, like a boss!
But it’s ok, because Elder J. Santos absolutely deserves to be a trainer so quickly.  I am learning a ton from him every day. I have to admit, I think the best missionaries that I´ve met so far are Brasileiros. A part of this is because there is a strong culture of young men teaching and going out with the missionaries many times a week here in Brazil. We always have more member-present lessons than we have other lessons. The young men here already know how to teach the lessons. It´s pretty impressive. Maybe that´s just the experience I had. It´s probably different wherever you go.

So anyway, I received the notification that I would be transferred about 1 PM on Tuesday. The boat left at 2:30. What!!! It was crazy, trying to get everything packed in such a short time, and with the omnibus commute I really only had about an hour to pack everything and leave. And then the wheels on my suitcase broke. What???

So I looked pretty funny, an American hurrying down the dirt roads literally dragging a suitcase behind him to try and catch the omnibus/boat.

It rained!
And because I love my mother and family so much and want to keep receiving packages, I did not open the Christmas package. It was hard to carry it on the boat and omnibus and streets of Belém, but I love y’all so! No actually it wasn´t that hard. I just made Elder Ramos carry it! :D

Anyways, Elder Ramos is training again. A Brasileiro this time! He was super excited. I heard nothing that night about where I would be going or who would be my companion. I slept Tuesday night in the Mission Home with a couple other new missionaries. Wednesday morning and I still didn´t know where I was going. I asked the Assistants who work in the area what would be going on, and they said I would work in their area that day. So after Almoço at the home of a member, in the middle of the crazy streets of Belém, they handed me and another missionary a list of names and addresses to find in Belém for the next 5 hours. The only problem? We had never worked in Belém before, didn´t have a map, and really didn´t know where we were at that moment. The only other problem? The other missionary was an American that spoke even less Portuguese than I did. What!?!

So off we went. We asked the people on the streets to look at the list and find people for us. We gave out pass-along cards. We even taught 2 lessons to people we found on the streets! But we only found 3 out of the 10 references. It was fun.

Sorry I’ve gotta go. The only other update is that our house is 1 room and has 4 people. Yuck. Our bathroom doesn´t work and we do our laundry by hand. I love my area. Love you!

Called to Serve…

Elder Gale

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