Monday, April 13, 2015

Special Guests at the Honorato School

With the director and kids from Honorato School

Baptism gift that we gave to Thais to help her remember her baptism

Beautiful fern-like tree

"Love notes" from some of the kids at Honorato school

Nice home next to the school

Sabbath sunrise from our bedroom window

School zone

We had a great day with the kids from Honorato school

Honorato School - the country school where we got to teach an English class

April 13, 2015

In keeping with our week, a lady at the bus stop said to us “You are always running” as she snapped her fingers, Brazil style.  It seems that we are living our own version of “fast and furious”.  We spent our time this week doing a variety of things. 

Our thought has been that we don’t want to tell everyone how soon we are leaving.  We don’t want it to become about us.  We just want to do what has to be done and do our regular missionary work right up to the end.  But everyone seems to know or at least they are asking about our departure date.

We were walking up the street when Renato, the hot-dog man, drove up the street.  He saw us and pulled over.  He was leaving town on vacation for a couple of weeks.  He wanted to give us one last good-bye as we will be gone by the time he gets back.  That has been typical for us this week. We have tried to visit as many as we could, some on the street, in the stores where they work or in their homes.  We will miss these good people!  We will worry about them.  Some have promised us pictures when they finally make it to the temple or when they get baptized.  We hope those blessings will be realized. 

Gabriele requested another follow-up lesson for Thais.  She invited her mom, Claudia, and grandma, Iná.  We presented the first lesson again, using figures on the white board.  We left the white board with Thais as she has enjoyed helping with each lesson and placing the figures on the board.  They want us to come back next week for one more lesson. 

As some may have seen on FB, we were invited to teach an English class at the Honorato school.  It is a little country school a bit out of town.  The director of the school picked us up at the church and gave us a ride.  The kids were really great!  They were interested, paid attention, participated and seemed to enjoy it.  They seemed to like the games we incorporated into the English lessons.  Even the teacher got up front to challenge a student in one of the games.  It was fun.  The director told us that these country kids were sweet and simple, not like the school kids in the center of town.  We really enjoyed them.  Afterwards, two or three of them gave us little pictures they had made in school or hurriedly wrote little “love notes”.  We told the director that we wouldn’t bring up religion, but asked (and received) permission to answer any question asked of us as to what we were doing here in Brazil.  At the end of the lesson, the teacher asked us that very question.  So we had a brief opportunity to do our “missionary thing”.  Mika, the director has been to church once this month with a family in the branch that lives close to the school.  She invited us for coffee afterwards, or at least tea.  She was amazed when we declined and it gave us a brief opportunity to explain the word of wisdom.  She wanted to be “friends” on fb.  By the time we got home, we had received her “friend request”.  Pics were posted on fb shortly afterwards and one of our daughters is now also friends with her.  Amazing! 

Our apartment also is in disarray as we have begun the process of cleaning and packing.  It is amazing how much even missionaries can accumulate in a year and a half.  We had some good news though.  It appears that the Cachoeira branch Elders will be moving into our apartment when we leave.  It will be much nicer for them than the one they are living in now.  These are the only two Elders in the District who haven’t been to our apartment yet.  Sister Castro asked them to come over and check it out.  So they came one morning so we could show them around.  We also made a little breakfast cake for them.  Had to make the place look and smell good!  We are excited too as we can leave a lot of things here for them.  It will make the move easier for us.

We were supposed to visit at the home of Julio and Rosangela on Saturday.  We saw Julio downtown on Saturday morning.  He wanted to postpone the visit until Sunday afternoon.  He accompanied us on our little shopping trip, helping us find a couple of non-missionary type items for our tour, like sunglasses, a hat and mascara.  He knew the best places to find these items at the best prices.  To buy mascara, you have to go to the “farmácia” (pharmacy). (They keep it behind the counter).  It was pretty funny seeing Julio describe to the clerk what kind of mascara we were looking for.  Sunday was the day Julio had promised that we could take a photo of him down on his knee, proposing to Rosangela (since we won’t be here for their wedding).  But when we arrived he wanted to do the photo next Saturday.  We tried to explain that we had a dinner appointment with President Torres on Saturday at noon and a baptism to attend later in the day.  But he insisted that we could make time for the “important people”.  They wanted one more visit.  He promised that if we would come on Saturday, four of them in the family would come to church next Sunday. Reluctantly, we agreed. We would love to visit them again next week, but were worried about time restraints.  Now we just hope the baptism is late enough in the day that we can squeeze in a visit to Julio and Rosangela and family in between lunch and the baptism.

Anyway, we have just been trying to really see and appreciate the sights and sounds here in Brazil and, especially the people we have come to love.  It is a full week ahead.  On Sunday we had the opportunity to bear our testimonies one last time.  Afterwards, we received many hugs, warm wishes and dinner invitations for this next week.  We want to be missionaries up to the very end!  So we have a couple of Family Home Evenings scheduled, and several lessons to teach.  Every day and every evening is booked.  We also have lots of packing to do! We aren’t quite sure when that will happen.  This is our last week.  We have one more Sunday!  In order for us to tour Brazil a little after our mission, we will be released by our Stake President sometime in the afternoon next Sunday via the internet! We really can’t believe it!  We are both sad and happy at the same time.  We love the people here.  But we have missed family a lot.  This week we missed a couple of graduations.  But we look forward to being home soon for many upcoming happy occasions!  

We know this week will fly by! The week ahead looks like it will be “fast and furious”!  Hope all is well with each of you!  We love you!!
Eu te amo!

1 comment:

  1. Elder and sister Shirley!! I want to come visit you! I'm so sad I missed your report, I didn't know you were home already! Text or call me 2086810684
    -Amy Biddulph