Rio de Janeiro

Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Monday, September 16, 2013

This week was pretty crazy.  Lots of stuff happened.  We had the zone conference of Rio de Janeiro and Nova Iguaçu so we had to go sleep in the house of Belford Roxo to get to the Caxias chapel as a district.  Belford Roxo looks a little bit shifty.  Ill just pray I stay in Nova Iguaçu haha  At the conference, I was able to see Elder Hansen from my old area Vila São Luis and ask him about everyone.  Seems like our recent converts are firmes and fortes there.  At lunch, I asked him how is Emanuel, and he took a deep breathe and looked at his food.  After a little bit he looked up and he and told me that his baby son Miguel had passed away.  I didnt really know what to say.  Through all that Elder Asto and I passed with Emanuel, we had become family- and to hear that Miguel had died hit me really hard.  As I sat there without words, Elder Hansen continued to talk.  He said that at the burial, Emanuel made a promise to his son- that he would do anything and everything to live righteously and be able to see his son again.  I thought about all that had happened and I have come to the firm conclusion that the mission of Miguel was completed.  It was because of his son that Emanuel´s heart was softened enough to hear the gospel and apply it in his life- and now it is because of his son that he will strive to live faithful until the end.  Kind of like our own Savior- who came to the world to give us his gospel, and because of His sacrifice gives us an eternal hope for the future of living with our families again.

This Sunday was the miracle of the baptism of Leticia.  The baptism was wonderful- prayers, a message given by her mom, and even a special musical number by the Elderes lindos.  :D  Roberto called Leticia into the font and baptized her on his knees (he has problems with his feet)  It was one of the coolest experiences I have participated in.  The light in the eyes of Leticia was bright, but even brighter still was the light in the eyes of Roberto.  I guess it´s gotta be something special to baptise your daughter-especially after being inactive for so many years.  Welp, here in a few years maybe it will be me in the font with my own kid. 
A few days before the baptism, Leticia let us know some secrets she had been keeping.  She had seen an angel.  She was up one night after reading her scriptures with her parents, and she saw him.  She said he had a white robe and had a scroll that he opened.  He said nothing, and then a few minutes later left.  The next night, she dreamed with Christ.  He talked and conversed with her, and then told her that she would yet see another angel.  I tried to think of what this all could mean.  Perhaps the scroll is the Book of Life where the angels are always *silent notes taking* -especially when she was about to take the important step of baptism.  I dont know for sure, but I have certainty that coisas grandiosas have happened in that family and will yet happen. 

After the baptism, Julia, the other daughter was begging to jump in the font too, and our other two pesquisadores got really excited.  One of them is a young man Iuri, and the other a woman Jamine (single mom).  Jamine was even asking *If I am baptized, who would baptise me??*  We are seeing a lot of miracles happen in this ward.  Rodrigo, a guy 24 yrs old finally came back to church after 5 years and is now preparing to serve a mission.  We´ve just got to keep the work going because Heavenly Father is definitely doing his part!!

Love you guys,
Elder Stinnett

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