Cuiaba Brazil Weather

Monday, April 1, 2013

First Week in Brazil week #14 & 15

Elder Kennington and his Companion Elder Reed
Ola minha familia! Tudo Bom? Wow so much stuff to write, so much has happened these last two weeks. So right now I am in what is called a Lan House which is a place where people can go and pay to use the internet, they are everywhere in Brasil. It only costs about a dollar an hour. or 2 brazilian reais. Wow so my last week in New York was good, we were taught
by Elder Bednar for 3 hours on Saturday. Basically we all asked questions and he would answer them and we would learn together. The topic was on faith. We were
all in the chapel and he was at the stand. We would raise our hands and he would point at us and he would answer the question or have someone else answer it that was on the stand. It was really great and we all learned alot together. I got to shake his hands and look into his shining eyes and face. What a choice experience it was. I remember when we got back to Carthage I felt that longing to be around him again because you just feel so full spiritually when we are around spiritual giants. On Sunday I said my last good byes at church and was able to bear my testimony and say thanks to all the good members. We had a neighbor that lives in our building come to church. We had helped her get her car unstuck from the snow on Saturday morning and then that night she asked us for help putting together this little table thing. We got there and she was very curious about our religon. She said she wanted to go to church with us. We were like heck yes! and she showed up to church the next day. They had other things to do so they only stayed for sacrament meeting but I hope she remember how she felt. We didnt have to do anything. I know Elder Menlove was setting up an appointment to teach her because she wanted to learn more. Its funny how the Lord just throws people in you lap sometimes. Anyway wow we went to the mission presidents home on sunday night last week because we needed to pick up the other Elders that were taking our spots. They are also going to Brasil. I hope they have a good time. We got to the airport at about 8:30 monday morning to pick them up but we didnt have our flight until almost noon. So we waited at our terminal and before long we were told that the flight to Atlanta had been canceled because there was serious knocking noises in the engines and it wasnt fixable. So they pretty much had to reschedule everyone to fly out the next day except for us the worked it out to where we would fly to an airport near new york city and then we would take 2 cabs to jfk airport and then from there fly to São Paulo and then to Cuiaba. So we checked with the travel office in slc and they said that would be fine. Then like 30 minutes later they called us back and said that they were sending a plane from florida to here and we could resume our regular flight schedule and we would still have an hour layover in atlanta so we switched it back to that. It was supposed to leave at 3:30. Around that time we got on and before long were told we wouldn´t be leaving because the plane had an oil leak and we had to wait for the mechanic to arrive. This took for ever but after waiting back in the terminal again for a while we noticed a man with a brazil shirt on that looked brasilian he had darker skin. So I walked up to him and told him I liked his shirt. He gave me funny look like he understood nothing of what I said. I think he must have seen that my name tag was in portuguese cause he asked me if I spoke portuguese in portuguse. And I dont know what happened after that but all for of us stood together and another brazilian joined we talked about a bunch of different stuff. I asked them if they were very religous and then we went into a whole other conversation. Eventually it led to me talking about the Book of mormon and Joseph Smith and the first vision. One of the other missionaries had a portuguese Book Of Mormon with him. He honestly shouldnt of even had it cause it was randomly given to him by a member of the ward he was serving in. He didnt even remember packing it cause he thought he had lost it in his apartment but He opened his backpack and it was sitting there right on top. At this time they told us to all get onto the plane because it was ready. We gave him the Book of Mormon and bade him to read it. At this time they said the plane was ready to go finally this was at about 5:30 we got on the plane and he took out the Book of Mormon and read the title page and read in Alma for a good 30 minutes straight. How cool! I prayed again that he will remember how he felt and that he will hunger after the book. Well we got to Atlanta and ran to our terminal. But the plane was just barely gotten on the runway and we had missed it by 20 minutes or so. So we got rerouted to Brasilia which left at about 9, so we had a 2 hour wait. We flew through the night and I got almost no sleep. maybe an hour and a half. We got to Brasilia and we were blessed to find that all out luggage had made it fine. Customs was a snap and finally we were in Brazil! We had to call the church travel people in Brazil to see if the could re route us straight to Cuiaba instead of Brasilia to São Paulo and then to Cuiabá Elder Saxton was the man cause he did all the calls to get things figured out we finally got a flight secured to Brazil that left about noon. So we got on and we were off to Cuiabá airport. It was only about and hour flight and I remembe fighting tears as we landed because the Spirit bore a powerful witness to me that that was where I needed to be and that is where I was called by divine insapration. We were met by the Assistents to the Presidents and were then taken to the mission home by this shuttle bus thing which was crazy cause everyone drives crazy here. But we made it to the mission home which is a very very nice apartment in Cuiabá its quite large the church spared no expense making sure it was livable. President and Sister Reber our just wonderful great people. I love them so much already. They explained that I would be going to Caçeres which is a city about 4 hours from Cuiabá which has about 60,000 people I think. I was suppose to go there on Wednesday afternoon but we still had to go to the federal police to get registered to make sure we were all legal, that took a long time and we werent able to leave that day so I was going to go with the president and his wife the next day becuase they had been invited by the branch in Caçeres to come to an activity. So I was going to go with them but then it was switched so that I would go with another Elder on Thursday morning that was also going to Caçeres but wasnt able to make it down the last few days because of some fool protesters or something that blocked off the road because they didnt own any land or something stupid I dont kknow. But I stayed the night with that Elder whose name is Elder Law, he is an awesome dude from Washingon. we stayed with the office Elders and then left on Thursday morning at like 4:30 but we missed our bus because the taxi we had coming never showed up and so we went back and got another set up to go later in the morning on a different bus. So me and elder laws got on that and went to Caçeres we were told there was 2 stops in Caçeres and that we needed to get off on the second stop but for some reason it only stopped at the first, and then it just kept on driving to the next stop and hour away. Elder laws talked to the workers on the bus and informed hime thay they would work something out so we got to this pit stop place and hung out for a while for the bus to take us back, we were they for probably 3 hours or more and then finally the bus came. We talked to several people and invited several to come to church on sunday. People our really open here. We got to Caçeres finally and I met my companion Elder Reed. He is awesome! He reminds me so much of Our Cousin Dillon Tabbee. He looks alot like and his sense of humor reminds me of him. He is from Tenessee and I am his first American companion. in three days he will hit his 1 year mark. He is really funny. We live in what is considered a really nice house here in brasil. We have 4 Elders living together. Me, Elder Reed, Laws and Paredes. Elder Paredes is from Chile. They are all super fun and funny and have a strong desire to work. Friday we went to the ward activity which was a place with a kind of pool thing that feeds of the river. It had a volleyball area and patio area place. We ate steak and beens and rice. It was really great. The members here are awesome they absolutely love the missionaries. They love to joke and tease. I love it. Even thought i don´t understand much of what they are saying I can understand their love for the Lord and happiness that they have. They always comment om how tall I am and have already been nicknamed gigante by the kids, cause I`m the tallest person in the branch even though Im not even that tall. Yesterday was great and we had 106 people to church. less than 6 months ago they were barely averaging 30. The work is amazing here. I havent been able to do much this last week with everything and traveling and my companion got strep thrroat a few days ago and so we have had to stay in the house. We had to go to the doctor to get medicine and it cost like 120 reais which is like 60 bucks, we didnt have any money so we had to use my card funds for the next 2 weeks. But I will be reimbursed. But in the hospital we talked to a man and he agreed to let us teach him. The cool thing is everyone here love Christ. Everyone will give us their address. People are legit here. My area is in the Pantanal which is wetlands. There are supposed to be alot of alligators here. We walk everywhere and it is stinking hot. Whenever we are offered water we always take it. We saw a wild iguana in a tree in saturday. That was a first for me. Monday is the usual p-day but we are only taking time to do email today cause we counted friday as our p day since we played all day at the activity. The language is coming. I can understand the other missionaries pretty good. But the Brazilians talk so fast that I can pick out very little of what they are saying. They are amazing people, its so different then New York. I´m happy all the time now, everyone loves to laugh and smile. The food is great. Usually rice and beans and chicken or beef with like noodles. The Juice here is wonderful as well. I ate a passion fruit yesterday and it was delish. Its so green and beautiful here, the people are very poor and there is so many ran down homes that you wonder how its possible for anyone to live there. But people do and they are happy. We are excited for this week so we can get down and work. We will spend alot of time in the streets making contacts. President wants us to try a new method where we basically invite to be baptized on the streets. We Carry a book of mormon with us and some pamphlets and ask people if the have been already baptized, if so we ask if they recieve the holy ghost by the laying on of hands, and then if they say they already have we ask them if they have heard about the restoration. Elder Laws marked 28 baptisms in one week from doing this. So we get to try it this week. Im excited, thanks for your letters. I never got the letter from Grandma for easter, hopefully they send it back home. Dont worry about sending packages. The brazilian postal service will rip you every time. They ask you the value of the goods and then charge us here to be able to take it from the post office. My companion had to pay 100 reais to pull out a package from Christmas and by then almost everything was no good. If you send letters just send it to the mission home and they will get it to me. Its so great here though its April fools day so we called one of the presidents assistants and told him I wanted to go back to the New york mission, it was funny cause we pretended like I had been in the bathroom for the last hour not talking to anyone and I yelled through the door about how terrible it is here, we got him good it was funny. He is a jokester himself and he said that he would get us back soon... ha its so easy to smile and laugh here. What wonderful people. I was very saddened to here of the death of Courtney. I knew her fairly well, suicide is such a sad thing. We sure sweat alot though here it is hot hot hot. The temperature on the newspaper do it no justice, it says its like 80 degrees but its closer to 100. Well my time is up I will right down things that I didnt answer or forgot so that I can tell you them next week. My health is great and i feel wonderful. Also JOrdans easter present is awesome, Im jealous. Love you guys all! Until next week
Com Amor
-Elder Kennington

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