I'm trying to get all of the conference talks of Elder Quentin Cook. He will be coming to the mission on!!! I believe its the first time in 5 years that an apostle has came to Belém. Because of the distance, it's difficult to get the church presence here. Pres. Scisci is busy trying to get ready! :).
I loved hearing about dad going to Boise for Grandma's birthday--that's awesome! What a fantastic surprise present! Grandma Gale should be really happy right now :D Send my love to her!
I've been thinking about when it is our 6 kids grown up and married and we are having those kind of get togethers and reunions. That's one of the things I look forward a ton...our get togethers as a family. I have some splendid plans of us as grownups...sitting quietly in leather chairs around a fireplace playing bridge! If we're feeling a bit wild we could go for a stroll together around the park singing hymns! Or maybe have staring contests to determine who will read the scriptures first! I'm sure it will be more or less like that..
You asked about the object lessons...they are awesome! At least 5 times a week I'm using those ideas in our lessons and lunch appointments. They are fantastic! I really like the one with the nails...I do a pretty fantastic magic show/object lesson with those :D The translations worked out great for the puzzles--I used the plan of salvation just this last week...it helps the investigators to understand a lot better the lessons.
You talked about how people know the other Brazilian missions and they aren't as aware of Belem. The church is really strong in the south of Brazil...there are tons of missions in São Paulo, Rio, Porto Alegre, and other south missions.
My mission is one of the furthest north, and the influence of the church is really small here. Also there are not many famous tourist or business spots here besides Belém. Few people actually know Belém and fewer people know Amapá/Macapá.
I think in our mission it's about 50% Brazilians, 30% Hispanics, and 20% Americans. I believe one of the reasons is that a majority of Brazilian missionaries are from São Paulo...for them to serve inside the country they have to go to another state of Brasil and Pará is one of the few states that is distant from São Paulo. Almost every one of my companions were from São Paulo...
As always, it's a privilege to write to all of you here on my mission. I'm always reminded of the sacred nature of my calling as a missionary here in Missão Brasil Belém. I have mixed feelings about how fast the time goes by.
I miss you all a lot...as always :D. I'm happy to hear that you guys still think about me and pray for me. This time is so unique and special in my life and I'm grateful for the support I receive from every one of you.
I explained the most part of the things that happened this week in my voice recording.
I've been here in Macapá for about 7 months...that's the most time I've ever stayed in an area or seen anyone stay in 1 area! I'm lucky that this is without doubt the best area in the mission. It's going to be the hardest thing in the world to leave here in a few weeks. We've already planned my going away party on the ! It will be a Pizza Night/Elder Gale.
I already have a few people planned out to baptize these next two weeks, so I'll be focusing on them and on leaving the area ready for the new missionary to continue having success.
Sorry for the lack of detail! See the voice recording for the weekly miracles and experiences, because there were a ton!
Love you guys!
Carson's Voice Recording: