Monday, August 22, 2011

But I pressed forward...

Hi Family!
Boy do I have some stories to tell!  This week was much more different than the others. Tuesday night I could tell I was starting to get sick. I had a sore throat and the head cold kind of thing and was getting more and more weak and really bad body aches. But I pressed forward. My contacts were really horrible because with all this going on my brain was not working in Portugues very fast. We went home, did quick planning and I went to bed. I was up every hour with a fever and body aches so bad I couldn´t sleep. The next morning when Sister Powell and Sister Nicáscio woke up and could tell that I was even sicker than before. They called Sister Araújo and she said to take me to the Hospital because it could be dengue. I was really weak, achey and tired but we got a bus to the Vila Velha hospital only to find out they  didn´t take our insurance.  Too weak to do another bus we all pitched in for a taxi to a hospital that did take my card. Long story short, the doctor saw me, checked my breathing, asked if I had asthma (I said no) and looked at my throat.  It was a replay of the time I had really bad strep and the doctor went to swab my throat to do a test, but just looked in it and was like, ´Yeah its strep.´  Only in Portugues.  So I had to get a FAT shot in my arm, I didn´t look but my companions said they were praying for me when she took the needle out of  the toolbox (yes, literally a tool box for tools). But I survived. We returned home and got my medicine from the Pharmacy and Sister and President Araújo came to our apartment. Then the  coolest thing ever happened. Since we were in a trio President said he would take me to their house and I could stay there until Friday and they would bring me back in the morning.  And thus the adventure began. It  made sense too that instead of three missionaries staying in a house, they take me and  my companions could teach our investigators.  So, I packed my stuff and moved into the suite in Jardim a Pena with the President and his wife. It was AMAZING! I got to rest and study and have homeade pineapple juice every hour. It was just like living at Grandma and Papa Bowens again. President Araújo reminds me a tiny bit of Papa Bowen. He´ll tell a story and make himself seem much more suave than  he actually was and give the Papa Bowen look with the raised eyebrows like, `You know´.  I will never  forget my time at the Mission Home. The first evening we sat and talked in the living room, Presidente Araújo practiced his English with me and me and Sister Araújo would just laugh and laugh at his stories and his English. His accent is hilarious.  The second night they had a real English class with Elder Swanson and Elder. It was hilarious. President is so funny when it comes to English. But the stories will have to wait for a letter or Christmas or something.
I returned home, rejuvenated on Friday and worked hard all weekend. We taught Phelipe who is having a hard time coming to church and with some aspects of the church but the Spirit was very strong and I know if he prays he will know that all aspects of the church are led by the Savior and he will be happy when he keeps the commandments.  I got a little glimpse of how Nephi and Ammon and them felt when they saw the wickedness of the people or the people that  wouldn´t keep the commandments. But I´m praying hard for him because I know he will be a powerful leader in the Church. So, that was the crazy week I had.
Oh, yes, it rains. I think like once every two weeks. It rained yesterday but it worked out because the old man, Volmar, we are teaching won´t go to church unless he can take us in a taxi because he doesn´t like feeling dependant on other people..... so, basically, we have an investigator that takes us to church!
  I love you guys and love to hear about your lives! Even if  don´t respond specifically to each, I love reading about everything thats happening. I´m glad you are serving your fellow man because that is what the Lord will ask us  in the last days! These are the last days! I read today in Jesus The Christ that the last days are so close, that in the time of Joseph Smith (200 or something years ago) The Savior was calling the last days ´today´. Kind of crazy. But I´m excited for the Savior to come!!!!!!!   Is that a weird way to put it?
Sister Kelsi Kate Johnson
P.S. Tell Dallin to go to Mission Prep or I´ll never talk to him again!!!
2nd Letter a minute later:
I don´t  know what I was thinking...I still have 20 minutes!
So. Adventure at Presidents house. When I got there I  felt kind of awkward because I didn´t know what I could or couldn´t do, but it got better with time. We ate lunch and I slept. After I woke up it was about dinner time and Sister Araújo made some kind of something like roast and onions and carrots and stuff, but she put it in the blender for me to eat as soup for my throat. It was actually pretty good. After that me and Sister Araújo played piano and sat and talked in the living room about temples, about traveling and about English and Portuguese. Right as she was telling me that she has fears to speak English because her pronunciation is bad but President doesn´t care he just  talks and talks the best he can....President walked in and sat down saying,  We spekin  ingles? and then he began to say all kinds of things to me in English. He told  me the story of how he met Sister Araújo and  when they got lost in Salt Lake. At one point Sister  Araújo turned to me and asked if I was understanding and before I could answer Presdient was like, in Portugues, She understands! She understands! (like, just let me tell this story) Me and Sister Araújo laughed so hard. He was also telling me how he traveled back and forth from Fortaleza to São Paulo a lot and he came to a word he didn´t know so he did his hand like and airplane and went ´Sssssss!´  I turned to Sister and was like What word is Sssss!? Now we have this inside joke where when we don´t know what to say we go Ssssss! We laughed hard after that too!
The next night, English class was even funnier because Elder Swanson and Elder Athans would give President and Sister a scenario that a missionary might call and they need to respond in English. Elder Athans put his had up to his ear like a telephone and said, in English, VERY SLOWLY  `President. My toilet is broken.`  President got all serious. Leaned back and then forward, put his hand up to his ear like a telephone and said, ´ Okee, vhary wew. Sory.´  We all started laughing so hard, but Elder Athans  persisted with the telephone to his ear. ´President. What should I do?´  President, with his hand up to his ear like a telephone, in broken English, ´Okee, I go sershing fora salution. I vill call joo in  a cupple days.´ We all laughed again. We did this with various other  situations like headaches and missionaries that wanted to stay home. It was so funny, I wish you could have been there. I could not control my laughter and it was laughter I needed because although Sister Powell and Nicáscio are awesome, they aren´t very funny and I need funny! But, I got it!  
It was an awesome couple of days that I was able to rest and recover and get to know my Mission mãe and pai. They really are like my parents now and I can turn to them whenever I need didn ´t feel like that before, but now it does.  It was cool too after dinner on Thursday me and Sister Araújo sat at the table and she read the Friend in English and I read the Liahona (Ensign) in Portugues and we´d ask each other what the words we didn´t know meant. It wasn´t fair though because when she asked a word, I´d explain in Portugues and when I asked a word she´d explain in Portugues. But it was fun and helped a lot.   I learned how much the President does for his missionaries and how he loves every single one.  I got to see behind the scenes the  work of a mission president and its truly inspired and vital work.  Elder Costa of the Seventy is coming tomorrow and we get to hear from him in our Zone first. Pretty exciting!
Its amazing how each moment that happens on my mission has a purpose and has a lesson that I need to learn. Every hour, every minute is important. It makes sense  why people grow so much in  a year and a half, two years.  I can´t wait to see how much I  still have to grow!
LOVE YOU GUYS! Send my love to my nieces too!
Love, Sister Kelsi Kate Johnson
Hope at least some of this makse sense.

Friday, August 12, 2011

Silently Cracking Up

So, first of all I have to tell dad. The Stake Patriarch is in our ward and is so cool! He loves Pink Floyd and even invited us over for PDAY to watch David Gilmour Live at Albert Hall...seriously. But we had to turn him down, obviously. :( But he´s awesome. His name is Wilson. He was a hippie, left his home and lived on the streets for two years and everything! Awesome. Now he´s a Patriarch. This gospel is so cool.
Our Baptism for this Saturday fell.  Merisvaldo, the Baiano, we´re still working with. He has to quit smoking and we we´ll probably have to review all the lessons again. But he´s awesome and hilarious. We had asked him if he was reading the Book of Mormon and he said yes, but it didn´t sound very truthful so Sister Morales asked him if he read the part about the white  horse and he was like, Yeah, it was a pony né? We were laughing SO HARD, it was really funny. I guess you had to be there. Then he was making dinner and kept offering us stuff and all of a sudden he said I´m gonna go buyt you something to drink...and super fast he jumped on his bike and said to watch his food and he took off! SO we were left sitting alone in a Baiano´s house. Me and Sister Morales were cracking the silent cracking up this real? So funny! But he´s awesome, we just need to keep working with him! 
Sunday was amazing. It was testimony meeting and Isabella bore s powerful and simple testimony and Presidente Araújo was there. Perfect. The spirit was so strong in the chapel. So many people after Isabella bore their testimonies and mentioned her and the Sisters. It was so amazing. Indescribable!
So, I didn´t get transferred! I get to stay here! But I don´t know who my companion is yet, hopefully she´s ready to work hard because we have a lot of work to do!!! I´m so excited. I love this ward and this area!! 
Jenna - if you could get me Nathan Halls, Danielle Whipple and Alexa Betleys addresses that would be awesome. Facebook would probably work the best. And eanyone else that would like me to try to write them.
Other than that I´m working hard. Mission are really really really really hard but I keep on keeping on doing what I can...thats the key. Just keep going! I love you guys.

Sister Kelsi Kate Johnson