Monday, June 25, 2012

Staying put

Well there are six Elders here today in Quarai, and tonight all of them will be transferred except for me. I´ll end up with Elder William(s?) who some people think is from Argentina but I don´t know that many Argentinians with American names. It´s going to end up with just two sets of missionaries now. Then there´s also the married couple missionaries who are here and they´re going to stick around.
We went to Artigas today. It´s the town in Uruguay that´s on the border with Uruguay and Brazil. It´s more developed than this small town that I´m serving in but it´s not that HUGE of a city. They have sixteen Elders just there though so they´ve got to be baptizing and having success. We saw a couple sets of missionaries there today. Spanish and Portuguese are not the same! I understood pretty little and they understand Portuguese less. We took a few pictures including a picture of the big entrance at the bridge which says "Welcome to Artigas"  in Spanish. I´ll have time to send them next week.
Best of luck to Rick in finding a job.  The Lord will bless him for his mission.
About the article in the NY Times, my rebuttal: “The fundamental principles of our religion are the testimony of the Apostles and Prophets, concerning Jesus Christ, that He died, was buried, and rose again the third day, and ascended into heaven; and all other things which pertain to our religion are only appendages to it." JS Jr.
I´ll catch up with you all next week I love you very much.
-Elder Hanson

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Picture Catch-Up!

So we are going to go to Urugai but didn't end up going there yet.  I'll make sure to take pictures when we go there.  So this week we marked the baptismal date of a woman named Beatriz.  We're going on a ton of visits with the branch and district presidents.  The work is going well.

Here are some pictures of me back in Sao Borja with Elder Carmo

The Elder in the middle is Elder Jannsen. He looks American but is Brazilian.
These kids were in a primary program.  I taught the kid in the red shirt in Sao Borja and now he and his family have been baptized.

Here are some pictures I hadn't sent from Christmas.  The Christmas tree is a ladder with stuff on it.

We found this shiny rock (crystal).
A few recent pictures from a parade.

This is the cat that stalks us.
And the horse in front of our apartment.
This is our branch president.

Monday, June 11, 2012

Manaus Temple dedication

The dedication of the Manaus Temple was yesterday and the cultural celebration was Saturday. Dieter F. Uchtdorf was there with Elder Cook and Elder Costa. At the celebration, President Uchtdorf began his small speech on Saturday with a few simple words in Portuguese (comovi, stuff like that) and then the translator took care of the actual talk. The funny thing is that the translator got a little mixed up when translating some of the things and then got embarrassed which led him to get more mixed up. Presidente Uchtdorf thought that maybe the translator by his side wasn´t managing to hear him very well so he pulled the translator in and put his arm around him and began speaking slowly. This just wound up with the poor guy even more embarrassed.Presidente Uchtdorf held up one of the funny party hats that they gave him and said he´d treasure it and then he told everyone to have fun. On Sunday President Uchtdorf and his wife, along with the other authorities and their wives, did the corner stone ceremony then he invited small children to participate as well. The translator managed to follow him this time but Presidente made a lot of jokes and he´s sort of a nut, which is good.The dedication was incredible and the prayer and speeches were powerful. There was a showing of basically all the parts of the temple inside and out. It´s speechlessly beautiful. It seems like it´s absolutely huge. I know I want to go there someday because it´s a very beautiful very special temple. Our investigators couldn´t go to the dedication as it was only for baptized members. It´s so cold here. This is actually the nicest house I´ve lived in yet but being that all houses are made of brick and Quarai is the coldest city, It´s been tough. Winter is starting and no matter how many layers I put on, the cold kills me. We have space heaters in our rooms but if someone takes a shower while they are on, the shower doesn´t get hot or the power goes out all together. Six people need to take a shower so basically everyone is just cold during morning study. I was going to take a bunch of pictures but we didn´t get the chance.
My time is short today, I’ll catch you up more later.
Love, Elder Hanson

Monday, June 4, 2012

Plugging along

Well, today we´re going to Uruguay. I´ll make sure to take pictures. So I had never noticed before but there´s a big Angel Moroni really close by our apartment on a telephone post.  He´s got wings - and real angels don´t of course - but he´s got a trumpet and it´s definitely supposed to be him. In the other Elder's area, there´s a Zion street, a Zarahemla street and Brigham Young and Joseph Smith have their own streets too.
We had three investigators in Sacrament meeting yesterday. The group of people we´re teaching is really growing. The district president wants to do some visits with us later this week and also has a reference for us.          
My companion says I use some words that no other American uses. In other words I´m developing a good vocabulary. I´ve started reading Church manuals to find out how to speak more intellectually and I read Donald Duck comics to find out how teenagers speak.  
This week the married couple missionaries -The Philipellis (Brazilans) - came to Quarai. They´re going to serve in the three branches here. My companion and I did visits with them a few nights ago. They are going to be able to help with the unmarried couples. These missionaries have already helped many people get married.  
The mission President visited for interviews yesterday. We talked about how this year can really be something special.
There´s really nothing better than a mission. It´s great to really help and get to understand people. I´ve also never laughed so hard in my life as I have some nights in the apartment after planning sessions. Six missionaries in one apartment is alot of fun. One bathroom on the other hand is tough. Rick: I found out the mission president is one of the biggest Whitney Houston fans ever. He´s now not as intimidating as he once was.
   Luke´s right when he says it´s special to hear someone´s first prayer. I always get a little emotional because it´s so easy to feel the spirit in those moments. I also really try my best to take advantage of those few moments during the sacrament each week.
   The couple that I baptised back in Tancredo Neves has already gone to the temple to do baptisms for the dead. We´ve starting to exchange letters so that I can always check up on them.
Today we´re going to eat lunch at the missionary couples house. CHURRASCO! Then we´re going with them to Uruguay. This last week there was an activity where we missionaries watched "Up" with people from the three branches. I don´t know what it is but I love watching movies in Portuguese. There´s something about the accents. The Church films are awesome in Portuguese. It´s funny though because there´s that Church film "Finding Faith in Christ" and the guy they got to do Jesus´voice is terrific - but - when he goes to do the parable about leaving the ninety and nine for the one lost sheep, he´s supposed to say "When he has found it, he carries it on his shoulders, rejoicing" instead he says "When he has found it, he carries it on his shoulders, delicious" You can tell when the guy reading the lines sort of thinks to himself "wait...that can´t be right."
I love you all. I´ll fill you in on other things later.
- Devin.