The work is going great here in Tenoné. I am still getting used to the area but I'm feeling more confident now in the ward. Our ward is really small and growing, but our stake is really strong. We are working with one of the best Stake Presidents that we have on the mission, Pres. Dario, and so we are working with very strong leadership.
One defining characteristic of the Icoarací Stake is that it is the largest stake as far as number of wards, but still one of the smallest as far as number of missionaries. Every one of the wards and branch have only 1 companionship working there, which is very different. In Macapá, for example, there were the same number of missionaries that worked in the Stake but there were only 5 wards. Here we have 8 wards and 1 stake.
We are putting in practice a plan to train the new ward mission leaders to help them understand their role in the stake. I will be visiting with the high counselor responsible for missionary work or with the stake counselor or even with the stake president to assist the missionaries coordination meetings with the LMA. We're hoping this type of follow-up can help them to have efficient and regular meetings.
I'm fighting to focus hard on the work. It's hard going to a difficult area when you are on the end of your mission...but I am sure the Lord wanted me to make a difference in this area. This last week we had an attendance of 70. We are not in a very pretty place as a ward and have a lot of work to do. I surprised the ward by playing violin early as a prelude and throughout the meeting which helped to break the usual tradition. We just need to excite this ward and I'm sure we will have success.
We live far from our chapel, so it is hard for us to get people to church particularly because it is a very poor area. When we get an attendance of 120 I believe we will be approved to start the construction of a chapel in our area. The land was already bought...now we just need sufficient members!
I will continue working hard! Endure to the End! I love you guys and miss you and am thrilled to be so close to seeing you! 4 more months!