So a couple that we are teaching, Zuleica (less active member) and João decided they want to get married! So this week we are going to help them. We probably will get to be witnesses! I have never gotten married nor accompanied anyone to get married and they have no idea what to do either so this could be fun. But anyway, we had a great Relief Society activity this week about cooking with a pressure cooker and how to have good lessons and give entertaining talks. We visited Zuleica and invited her to come, and she said yes! But only if João comes..... and we re-explained that is was a Relief Society activity, where there will be just women and no men, and she listened and nodded her head and then asked, so can João come? Uhhh.... sure... He can just kind of sit in the back in a corner or something. So he did. I hope he liked it too.
This week we ordered Domino´s pizza! It was delicious. Thinly sliced pepperoni is not common here so we appreciated the delicacy. We also passed by the supermarket this week and bought a huge loaf of warm french bread. We were very excited to eat it, but when Sister Kirk went to cut it, she gashed her finger open and went to wash it. I decided to be nice and finish cutting the bread, but then I, too, cut open my finger and it started bleeding like crazy. I don´t know what was up with that bread or that knife but public service warning--don´t get too excited about food and don´t cut hastily. But it is almost healed so that is good :)
So we were heading to visit Karen and Ângelo, and we passed an apartment building and almost walked past, but felt like we should stop. It is not fun or effective to try to contact using the interphone so we usually use other methods but we decided to give it a try and started pressing buttons. Honestly, for people who like pressing buttons this could be a favorite missionary pastime because there is a lot of button-pressing and little response at the other end (its hard to find someone at home or who attends the interphone) but when we pressed Apt#24 someone attended! But unfortunately it was basically impossible to hear what she was saying and she was not understanding us. She had an old little frail voice and by some miracle I was able to understand her say "go to the window." We thought she would poke her head through a window on the ground floor because that would make sense that it would be easier to communicate, but no, way up on the top floor of the building (there were only 3 but still, it was high) we see a little head with white hair leaning out the window. So we tried again, calling up "WE´RE MISSIONARIES OF THE CHURCH OF...." and she interrupted and said hold on! I can´t hear you, come to the other window, so we rounded the building and went to the slightly less busy street and yelled up to her side window "WE´RE MISSIONARIES OF....." but again she said, hold up I´m still not understanding, go to the other window. So we returned to the first window, but no one was there. After a minute or two, she reappeared with a bunch of string wrapped around a toilet paper tube and let down a paperclip and told us to write down our phone number. We were like, okay... sure. So we sent up a pass-along card and our phone number and she disappeared. We though to ourselves, mission accomplished, now she knows where to find us, not expecting much to come of it, but literally as we turned to walk away from the building, our phone rang. It was her! Her name is Dora and she couldn´t attend us at the moment but said we could try to come back some afternoon next week. Not the most ideal contact, but yeah. No effort is too much to invite others to come to Christ.
Karen came to an integration activity we had that was amazing! Irmão Bastos gave a presentation that was kind of leaning toward the hippy side but was really great. For example, he put up the lyrics to a song called "como uma onda do mar" (like a wave of the sea) or something like that and asked everyone to sing along and wave their hands in the air. But the overall message was great- service and repentance. Karen said it was exactly what she needed. She also came to all three hours of church this week! She is doing great keeping to her goals in diminishing her cigarette use. We are very proud of her. This week it was cool because usually when we come she is sad and down and by the time we leave she has cheered up a bit, but this week she was still beaming and happy from the activity when we showed up a day after and when we saw heras well!
Irmã Eliane gave a great testimony this week about how she was walking to a ward activity and a woman stopped her and asked for help. There are a lot of beggars in the city, but this woman was very well dressed and didn´t have the appearance of a beggar. But when the woman explained what she needed, it was not money or food, but she asked Irmã Eliane if she knew where she could find God. Someone had told her that Eliane was a lady that she could ask to help her find God. She was desperate, near tears, and looking for anything that could help her fill her emptiness. Irmã Eliane gave her some comforting words and took down her name and address to send the missionaries in her area there. It made me think about how selfish we sometimes are. We know where to find God, but sometimes we wait until people come up to us, desperate, pleading, at the end of their hope to share what we have. We have an unlimited banquet but are we willing to share? Or are we waiting until people are nearly starved to death to offer a morsel of food. How much better it would be to feed the hungry soul before it reaches desperation. We are here to help the suffering soul, but also to prevent this starvation before it happens. Matthew 25:40
Share the gospel! Serve others! Smile!