Thursday, January 12, 2012

Still Catching Up (from Dec.)

Dec. 19th ~
SO, Jardim da Penha is about 20 minutes by bus from Itaparica, Vila Velha. It is also on the beach. I´m literally in Vitória, Brasil now. The capital of Espírito Santo. We´re in the same ward as Presidente and Sister Araújo - so all the perks are inculded. Also, surprise. I´m training! Sister Powell is going home today because she messed up her knee and has to get surgery. Its super sad and she´s depressed but she gets to be home for Christmas! So. I´m finishing the training for Sister Peterson. So. The Lord knows I can do way more than I think I can. This area is really hard because there are a lot of buildings and apartments and everyone works. Like mini New York City...Brasil style.
 I don´t have a lot to report on the investigators and teaching end because we´re looking for people to teach and trying to discover where the Lord wants us to work...because now that we´re going to be one trio where theres always been two duplas - we have a BIG area.
 So. I´m going to have the best Christmas ever. Yesterday we had a fireside in our ward with Presidente and afterward he told us we can spend the night at his house Christmas Eve!!!! WHAT?!!! I KNOW!!!!!!!!!! I´m so excited I can´t even email right. And today we get to hang out with Pres and Sister because we´re taking Sis Powell to the airport and she wants to buy some things before she goes home. Me and Presidente are excited for one else. This is our bond. :D I love Pres and Sister Araújo. They are so funny and just fun and happy people to be around.
 But. This week was awesome. I´ll friggin talk to you guys in less than a week!!!!! I hope I can remember how to speak English. Trying to talk to Sis Peterson is rough! So. I love you. Sorry this email is CRAZY, I´m just so excited and freaking out!!! Thanks for all your emails. Being Senior, I have to email our goals to the Assistants. Thank you. I love you!!!
Dec. 26th ~
My Christmas was awesome. Thanks so much for my presents. Hilarious t-shirts. Make up. Candy! Temple Ensign. Pictures of Arizona! Shirts for proselyting. Everything! Thank you, thank you, thank you. But the best present was seeing and talking to you guys! Christmas Eve we had a party with Zone Vitòria at Presidentes house. It super fun and funny. Elders. They are hilarious. Elder Spencer and his companion got everyone joke gifts. The last to open were Presidente and Sister Araùjo. The two biggest rival soccer teams here are Corinthians and São Paulo. So much that when they have games in São Paulo...people kill other people. Anyway. Presidente is Corinthian...Sister is São Paulo. When Sister opened her gift it was a São Paulista journal. She stood up jumping in excitement with all the other Elders that like that team. Presidente jumped up and ran away from her then did motions like he was washing the devil off his body from head to toe, saying, ''Get out! Get out!'' It was super funny. I love my mission mãe and pai. Then, us Sisters got to sleep there and go to church with them. Carmen, the crazy lady was there to greet me (ignoring everyone else because she doesn't like Brazilians). She kept screaming ''the book is on the table'' during Sacrament Meeting and I had to keep giving her PEZ to keep her quiet. So, that was fun.

Afterward church was when I called you guys! WOO HOO! I didn't cry until grandma Bowen jumped onto the computer and started crying and when I had to close Skype. Thats the weirdest thing ever to have to close down your family. I did not like that at all. But it was so good to see you all and talk to you. You all look awesome. It was super good to see Grandma and Papa Johnson too because I never see them or hear from them. My nieces are all so big and dang cute! Ellee looks/acts like shes kind of an eccentric little kid. Is she? I hope I answered all your questions and it all worked out good. I feel like I didn't talk to mom very much but that's what Mothers Day is for!!! Thanks for being an awesome family and supporting me. There are so many missionaries that don't have the support of their family. I am so blessed and so lucky. Its so good to see the blessings of my family for my labors here.Presidente always tells us: our family is receiving blessings now, but we won't receive our blessings until we get home; and the more we suffer, the more blessings. I think I'm going to get a lot of blessings!
After lunch we went to Presidentes house and hung out. It was so fun. We looked at pictures of their lives and joked. They are so funny and relaxed. Everytime we leave their house me and Sister Vieira always say to Sister Peterson. That NEVER would have happened with President Pickett. I love my mãe and pai!!! And starting this week I get to teach them English...if I remember it?!

Anything else? Oh! If you want. You don't have to, but Presidente REALLY likes the Jelly Belly Jelly Beans if you ever feel like sending my pai a gift. The same address of the mission that you have. We were all sharing the Jelly Beans and this box had 40 flavors. Even coffee and margarita. Pres grabbed margarita without knowing and threw it in his mouth and I said, ''Presidente! That's Margarita!''  He threw his hand in the air and said, ''Ope. Too late! Too late!'' Smiling, like, there's nothing that can be done. He also told us a story about how he threw up orange chicken in the glove box of his friends car. Sister Araùjo fell onto the couch laughing. So funny these Brazilians!

Catching Up (from December)

Dec. 13th 2011
Hi Family!

Nobody panic. We had a different PDay thing yesterday so we´re emailing today. Yesterday we had a Chirstmas Party with the whole Mission and everyone that was transferred (including me) moved yesterday and we get to email today.

First things first. I´m in Jardim da Penha em Vitória! It´s part of the Presidents area and I´m Senior Companion....I don´t know what Presidente is thinking. And Elder Spencer is my District LEADER!!! :D I will be able to Skype Christmas day but I don´t know what time still because church here is 9am until the time you guys want probably won´t work. But I (almost) promise I will know everything next week.

So. Yes. I was transferred. My first transfer and I´ve never been so sad in my life. By a miracle President told us Saturday morning so we had time to say goodbye to people. If not I don´t think I would have been able to leave. Saturday we went to the members houses and said goodbye. Cristiano was annoyed that Presidente did this, but trusts the Lord. Him and his wife Ana Paula joked that they won´t make lunch for the Elders and will send them away. Cristiano earlier this week wanted Presidente Araújo´s number and I asked him Saturday if he still wanted it and he said, ´´No. I don´t want it now. I´m annoyed with him.´´ Then we went and told Cristina and Sabrine. We were all so sad that we couldn´t even keep a conversation going. We´d talk and then get sad again. Then we went and told Isabella and Julia. Julia started to cry immediatley...which made me cry and Isabella was sad but understood. She´s going to miss me a lot and I her, but this is a mission...I´m learning...

Sunday we got to church and Bishop was the first person to greet us. He told us how sad he was and that we were great missionaries and the whole ward would miss us. When Ana Paula announced in Releif Society we were transferred everyone went, ´Awwwwww!´ and I cried through the whole closing song. Then in Sacrament Meeting Carol spoke (my recent convert thats 15 and was soooo nervous...Dallin suck it up and give a talk) and then I got to bare my testimony. Luckily all without crying. Sister Owens spoke too and then Irmão Jerônimo. Then Cristiano, who was conducting, got up and said how great of missionaries their ward was losing but that our church is a church of revelations and we have to trust in the Lord. By the end I was CRYING and some of the members too. After Sacrament it was just a big cry party. We had lunch and they went to say bye to everyone again. I can´t put into words all that happened but just know that I have a BIG family here that love me very much. More than any other missionary. I don´t even know how to say it in English. But I am loved.

Our last stop was Cristina. Cristiano and the whole Bazilio family was there (my family). We just sat around the table and talked and joked and made fun of everyone (JUST LIKE I do with you guys). Then Cristiano gave me an amazing blessing and I said goodye to my mãe and my irmã and my tio. As I was hugging Cristina (mãe) we were both bawling and when I let go EVERYONE even Cristiano was crying. It was harder to say goodbye to them than to you guys. I think because I prepared myself to say goodbye to you...I didn´t know I´d meet another YOU in Brazil. I love this people.
I´m hoping these feelings will pass. I was crying even yesterday during the Christmas Party off and on...Sister Nicascio kept saying. ´´I know how it is. Cry, my daughter. Cry.´´ And it would make me laugh and cry and Presidente and Sister Araújo kept looking at me like, ´´What are we gonna do with her.´´ Sister Powell said Presidente told her my Bishop even called and told him that we could stay one more transfer. My ward was NOT happy that Presidente did this right before Christmas...but Presidente transfered half the mission. I still call Itaparaica ´´my ward´´ and ´´my area´´ and I think it will always be. :D
The Christmas Party was awesome. Each zone did a skit of a scripture story. It was all SUPER funny...but not if I explained it. So just know that it was funny. And ... it was good ... but I felt lost and sad ... but laughed a lot too.

So. Back to the world of now. My new companion is Sister Vierra. She is amazing. We are going to work a LOT! She is the only member in her family and her dad died a few months ago. She arrived in the field with me at the same time...I just have more time than her because us Americans stay in the MTC longer. Her mom is very Catholic and she said her mom is commanding her to come home, but she doesn´t want to...I think...but I will learn SO MUCH from her. I have no idea why I´m Senior. But the Lord knows what he´s doing adn I don´t have a single doubt that I´m supposed to be here in this area with Sister Vierra...its just going to be hard to adjust.
But. Onward, I guess. I don´t know if mom and dad are still planning on coming to Brazil to get me at the end of my mission...but if you are I don´t know when you´d have to start doing the Visa stuff and I DEFINITELY have a house for us and Itaparica. Cristina is already planning everything. So, let me know when you know you know you know.
So. I love you guys a TON! I´m excited to call you and see you in 12 days!!! Oh my gosh! And whatever time I call everyone better be there!!! Once in a life time yo.

Sister Kelsi Kate Johnson