Mission Slideshow

Monday, October 29, 2012

Week #18


Random Thought: Snails are weird....

Great week! Hot week! Earlier in the week we went to a part of my area where I've never been before, to talk to a family referred to us by other missionaries. The other missionaries were Elders John and Gonzalez. We arrived there, talked for a bit, then asked what they remembered from the first visit with other Elders. The mom, Elizabeth, said she remembered something about families. Now the first lesson has a little bit about families, but the rest is about how the gospel was restored! So we asked what they learned about families and the little girl piped up and said,"really we don't know what it was about. The other Elders Portuguese was really bad!" So we laughed and retaught the first message! After, we called the other Elders and teased them a little. It was hilarious! Also as a side-note, I don't think a lot of people have seen Americans or missionaries in that area because EVERYONE was staring at me! Being blond and taller than most (although I'm only 5' 10"), I seem to stick out. Haha!

We did exchanges a few days this week and it was really great! The first time it was Elder Paredes and I and we had a great experience with teaching! We started by asking how they were doing with reading The Book of Mormon and did they enjoy it. They said yes and stopped there... We felt that we should explain more about the book and that it's about Jesus Christ coming to the Americas. After that it wasn't us speaking anymore! We opened our mouths and the spirit filled them with all kinds of wonderful words! It was a fantastic experience! After we left Elder Paredes said,"that wasn't me talking." I said,"Me either". During the lesson Elder Almeida (my comp) kept calling us. We called him back after. Usually elder Paredes and I have the keys and we are with our comps, but this day we were together and we took both sets of keys with us. The other Elders couldn't unlock the gate to leave! We felt pretty bad about that.

I also had exchanges with the zone leaders and we went to a house on the other side of the city...walking for miles! Ha it was long but that doesn't matter. While we were sitting in the house the younger boy kept looking at me funny and it turns out I am the first American any of the people at that house have ever seen! They asked me to pray in English and thought it was crazy that I speak and understand English and Portuguese! It was a cool experience!

Later in the week we were contacting and Elder Almeida saw a pretty girl and wanted to invite her to church! So we walked over to her and he was stuttering the whole time! It was hilarious! She ended up going to church so I guess it worked out.

Sunday! We had another baptism! Leonardo! He is only ten years old but he read every pamphlet we gave him, all the way through!! Also some investigators we have been working with for a while, finally came to church and we were so so happy! We'll see how it goes but we might have three baptisms next week! So excited!!

D&C 10:4

Com muito amor,
Elder Roman Laws

Monday, October 22, 2012

Week #17

Random thought: Painting nails is a waste of time! All that work and it only lasts a short time...then again so is shaving...
Fantastic week as always!

Earlier in the week my companion and I were at an appointment and in the middle of our message the other Elders who live in our house called. Of course we ignored them until we finished our lesson and left. We called them back and asked what they needed and they said they couldn't lock the gate because the lock was gone (I took it). So we laughed and told them it would be fine and we would check it out on our way to our next appointment! Before Elder Almeida hung up I had the best idea ever! I just looked at Elder Almeida with wide eyes and a dropped jaw and he understood... We went back to our house messed everything up (carefully) and hid tons of valuable and invaluable things from everyone, in our suitcases and in the other room. We then left the back door unlocked and opened a tiny bit. Since I had the gate lock, we locked it and gave a member next door, the key and asked her to unlock the gate and take the lock with her when we called later that night! We went through the rest of the day as normal and our last appointment was at 8:00pm. The other elders appt. fell through so we invited them to join us! It lasted until about 9pm (Elder Almeida called for the member to take the lock off at 8:50ish). We then returned home and Elder Paredes and Duarte were shocked and worried sick!!! HA! Elder Duarte said we needed to call the police and the mission president. So naturally I offered to do so! I "called" them and came back and told them the police were on the way! Elder Paredes kicked the wall when he found out they "stole" his toy picatchu! IT WAS HILARIOUS! My speakers and ipod were gone too so it was perfect! We waited until they decided to check on the suitcases. Finally Elder Paredes went to check and we hear "YOU JERKS!!!!!" from the back bedroom! Hahahahahaha! They were wonderful sports about it and all of us ended up laughing about until we went to sleep! Good times!

Saturday we had lunch with a member family (just like every day) but Friday and Saturday morning I was feeling pretty nauseous. So we went to lunch and I decided that I was only going to drink water or juice! We get there and everyone starts eating except for me and they asked why. I just told them the truth, that I was sick and they just left it alone. Anyway about half way through lunch I stood up and said, "excuse me, may I use you bathroom?" Of course they said yes. So I walked in to the bathroom, which was literally two feet from the kitchen table, closed the door and knelt down just in time to throw up! I was in there just throwing up for about 10 min. then cleaned my face and the bathroom a little and went back to sit at the table! Everyone was just looking and me because they heard me getting sick. So I said,"sorry..." and then,"do you have any more water?" Surprisingly I wasn't embarrassed at all and we just continued on as normal! Again good times! Don't worry mom I feel fantastic now and I am not sick at all any more.

After lunch Elder Almeida and I went back to rest until the baptism we had at 4:00pm. Remember Flaviana, the mom we baptized a few weeks back? Well she was our last baptism and on Saturday her son Richard was baptized! It was so wonderful and he was so excited! He is so smart and understands everything we teach him! Now that Flaviana and Richard are baptized, Leonardo one of her other sons, is excited and wants to take the discussions this week as well! So now we have his baptism marked for next Sunday! Also a young man named Uemerson wants to get baptized next Sunday! Two more next week! I'm so excited and happy!!!

D&C 25:11-12

Com muito amor,
Elder Roman Laws

Monday, October 15, 2012

Week #16


Random thought: Easy-rest beds are the best in the world!

Great week!
My new companion is GREAT! Last Monday we had transfers so at about 5:00pm we saw Elder Herrera off at the bus station. Elder Paredes and I were told we needed to wait for our new companions and that mine would arrive at 8:30pm and the companion for Elder Paredes would arrive at 12:30am! So instead of paying money for a taxi we decided to wait for our new companions there at the bus station! So we waited and after a while I thought maybe I should call our zone leader and ask when they were going to arrive, just to make sure. He said they both would arrive at 8:30am the next day! So we were waiting for FIVE HOURS for absolutely nothing!!! hahaha but its something to laugh about now!

Flaviana (we just baptized her) was telling us that her kids are loving church and that she´s going to bring them every week! At first her husband didn't want her taking them to church, but since she has been learning and taking the discussions he's seen a change in their home life. So he doesn't mind and is even smiling at us when we show up the their house!

On Wednesday night we got a call from the branch president requesting that I to go to his house as fast as I could! after hearing this I was a little worried, so we went over there right away and he says,"hey Elder Laws I need your help translating some forms for a young man who is going to serve a mission! (phew, nothing serious) So I sat down at his computer and to my surprise I could translate ALL of it!!! He doesn't use the Internet to translate because it translates wrong sometimes and the branch presidents and bishops are told to have someone translate. It was so so cool!!

On Friday we had an activity at the church! It was a huge barbecue Brazilian style! A ton of people showed up and it was so delicious! I taught the youth how to play ninja and they loved it! My companion taught another game and they ended up playing that game for most of the activity!

I had a cool testimony building experience this week. I put my backpack in the wash one morning and put all of my things into a scripture bag. Well I have a little thing of consecrated oil to give blessings to the sick that is normally clipped to my backpack. I thought,"I don't think I'll need this" but then I felt impressed to clip it to my belt. So of course I did! At the end of the day we had an appointment with a family and we taught about the Book of Mormon. Remember that little boy who head butted me last week? Well his name is Tiago and we found out that one of his kidneys isn't functional. We taught about priesthood power and so they asked for a blessing for him! I unlatched the oil from my belt and we gave little Tiago a priesthood blessing! It was so wonderful and I am so glad I listened to the spirit.

To end the week, on Saturday at lunch Elder Paredes and I were asked to give talks the next day at church!!! We accepted and they turned out to be great! After my talk I sat down and thought. Holy cow...I speak Portuguese!!!! After the meeting some people came up to me and said they understood everything! I am so thankful that the Lord has helped me learn!

Mosiah 18:10

Com muito amor,
Elder Roman Laws

Monday, October 8, 2012

Week #15


Random thought: Where do the bubbles in soda come from?

Holy Cow! What a great week!

First! Transfers!!!! I am not being transferred but my companion is! I will have a new BRAZILIAN companion tonight! I'm super excited! his name is Elder Almeida.

So this week one of the Elders in our house was transferred early. On Tuesday he left for Maracaju in Matto Grosso do Sul. So we were in a trio companionship for all of this week! It was fun but kind of awkward at the same time. Like contacting in the street for example. Three guys walk up to one little Brazilian. You could tell some of them felt uncomfortable.

Friday I went on exchanges again but this time with Elder Baliero! He is an amazing example and I learned so much from him! We were walking in the street and he saw a woman sitting in front of her house, so he said,"Alright you are going to talk to her." I'm kind of uncomfortable with contacting but I just said,"alright, but what do I say?" I don't know why but his response just made incredible sense to me! He said,"Just say hi!" So that's what I did! The conversation just went smooth from there and she invited us in! We had a wonderful, wonderful first lesson and she said that she had felt something! We asked her if she would come to conference on Sunday and she said yes! Sometimes when people say the will go to church they don't, but she showed up and she really liked it! Elder Baliero told me he thinks she will eventually be baptized!

Conference was fantastic and I learned so much! Kati! I'm so proud of you for deciding to go on a mission! You are going to be so blessed! Acho que você vai vir aqui para o Brasil! You'll share the family Portuguese!

We had a n investigator at conference, JOABE! I mentioned him in earlier letters! Well his wife has kind of been against our teaching and tries to bible bash sometimes. Well Joabe told us last night that she is now reading the book of mormon AND he even snuck a picture on his phone to show us! This makes me so excited because they are a wonderful family and I want so much for them to be part of this gospel!

Funny story! We were at an investigating family's house and we were having a closing prayer before we left! In the middle of the prayer while my head was bowed, something smashed into my head so of course I opened my eyes to see what in the world just happened! Their little boy was standing in front of me (2 years) getting ready to head butt me again! He had just head butted me HARD! ha So I just put my hand in the way until the prayer was over! I told my companions after and we laughed so hard!

Matt Rice! Welcome to the wonderful world of missionary work! You are going to be fantastic! Can't wait to spit portuguese with you in a couple of years!

Ether 12:27

Com muito amor,
Elder Roman Laws

Monday, October 1, 2012

Week #14

Alright to be honest I got sick of writing Portuguese words at the beginning of my letters! BUT I decided to start teach letter with a random thought!

Random Thought: I think its weird that boy cats make the same sound as girl cats.

Great week! Early in the week we went to a members home for lunch and found out his neighbor had a pet Macaw! Well we asked and they let us go over and take pictures! It was so cool! Its a big bird and it doesn't want to be touched! So we just fed it! I was wondering why it didn't fly so I asked if its wings were clipped. They said no and that the wings were broken a little! How sad.

Like Sister Reber said, we had an activity on Thursday with the ward! We set up chairs and everyone was "on a plane". The plane crashed and every one died. Elder Herrera and I were two angels (we dressed in all white) and guided everyone to each kingdom of glory! It was so fun! Each kingdom was represented by a room in the church bldg! We covered the lights in each room with colored plastic so when we turned the lights on, the light would be that color.The first was outer darkness and we covered the lights with black plastic and the two elders in that room were dressed in black! In the telestial kingdom room we covered the lights in red plastic and the elders dressed in jeans and tee shirts. In the terrestrial kingdom room we covered the lights with blue plastic and the elders dressed in jeans and white shirts. In the celestial kingdom room we left the lights normal and turned on the AC and the elders there dressed in all white (baptismal clothes). In each of the rooms the elders explained the kingdom their room represented! Everyone rotated through the various kingdoms. It was pretty simply but powerful and the spirit was strong!

We also had a zone conference where all the elders in Rondonopolis and the mission president got together for some guidance and training! There was so much to learn and we had a lot of fun! Afterward, President Reber had interviews with all the elders! He is a very smart man and I can definitely understand why he was called to be the mission president! After the conference a family in my branch made lunch for everyone at the conference! It was delicious! There are some people here that can cook sooooo well!

So we had a baptism on Sunday which was so wonderful! Her name is Flaviana (Not Flaviani we found out) and she has two wonderful little boys! I really love there family so I decided to give them each a gift! I gave little Ryan (3 yrs) a little light up toy, which I was told he played with for hours. I gave Richard(8 yrs) a little 3d spider-man notebook and stickers and immediately he gave me the biggest hug! After Flaviana's baptism I gave her a hard back copy of the book of mormon (in Portuguese). She really loved it because her kids get into her stuff and she has to hide her paper back copy, but now she doesn't have to worry as much!

I am loving my mission so so much! Thank you to all that have sent me letters or packages! They are so wonderful! I am responding to everyone! Just be patient because mail will be slow!

For this week, please read 2 Nephi 32:9 and enjoy.

Com muito amor,
Elder Roman Laws