Elder Cooper Siebers has been called to serve a mission for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. He will serve for 24 months in the Brazil, Rio de Janeiro mission. He enters the Provo, Utah Missionary Training Center on 10 July 2013.

Monday, January 13, 2014

27. Madureira, Rio de Janeiro

Hello Everyone!

I don´t have a whole lot to write about this week, but it flew by and it was absolutely incredible!

So it´s been an interesting week, Elder S is still down with "cajumba" [I googled this, Elder S has the mumps!] so we've been having to do a lot of shopping for them throughout the week. Elder S is literally stuck at home with Elder H, and today is the 9th day (I think) that they have been out of commission! 

Mom, you should tell his mom though (since your good at finding people and you've probably already talked to her at some point) that he's doing fine. Hes a little sad that hes been out for so long, but hes doing ok. 

This week we had zone conference as well, which had to be led by the assistants. It was awesome to actually get to meet the two new gringos in our zone, Elder A and Elder M. President asked us if we all had mineral water to drink and Elder M hasn't had any since he's been here! He's been using the filter bottle the MTC gave us, which isn't very safe I've heard. But he's ok! I explained to him how to get mineral water and that he would be reimbursed by the mission. 

[I think this photo was from last week- at a member's home for Christmas.]

Zone conference went awesome because I finally got a gauge for how much I've developed with the language. When you're living with another Brazilian you don't ever really get to see how far you've come because you always feel really stupid when it comes to the language. It was nice to see these elders struggling and not understanding (just as I was 6 weeks ago) and understanding everything!  Its really incredible how much I've learned, and I feel so good about everything now. 

We also had interviews with president which was a lot more down to earth than I thought it was going to be. Since it was my first and I'm gringo, he talked really slow and asked really simple questions:

How are you?
How do you like Brazil?
How do you like the work?
How is your companion?
Are you being obedient?

And that summed up our interview. I wanted to talk about the difficulties were having with our work, what I can do to be a better missionary... you know? This is our one chance to get our busy president to sit and listen to us individually and learn what we can do to improve. But that's ok, I'll just have to wait for the next one! 

Elder P and Elder Siebers

The best part about this week was this....

Ever since I've been here we've been struggling with having REAL progressing investigators. Hence, why I haven't been writing much about the people we´re teaching. Up until the beginning of Jan. we've had just J and T. On Christmas day I knocked on a door and found M who is really interested and we've taught her a lot of the lessons.

And this week we picked up 3 more who are all just fantastic!

G- We contacted him at the door. He´s always had a strong interest in religion and has visited and studied many different faiths. We taught him the first lesson and he really liked it. We asked the baptismal question and he said that if he received an answer he would. He wants to visit the church but he couldn't this week because of some other commitment. hopefully next week.

Cooper and a member from the ward.  How can I not love this photo?
J- We contacted her on the street. She´s very young and has a tiny 3 month old baby. I'm glad we talked to her. We taught her twice this week and she has a lot of great questions about life that we've been helping her answer. She is single, young and has a tiny baby now and I think shes just a bit lost. She really enjoyed the lessons though so well see what happens

V- Another contact we did on the street. She knew some members in the past and has always been just a tad curious about our faith. She didn't give us her address but said we could call some other time. We gave her a lesson pamphlet and told her about mormon.org

We didn't know what had happened until we called her yesterday evening. She read the pamphlet, then went to mormon.org and talked with one of the online missionaries. She said she loves everything about our faith and only had one concern left, it was about Baptisms for the Dead. Not to mention she read about the Word of Wisdom on the site and LOVED it and agreed to live it!  We didn't even say anything about it. SO COOL. We taught her over the phone and she really wants to come to church next Sunday.

All is swell here in Madureira, I'm excited for our new investigators. 

Keep em´ in your prayers!

Elder Siebs

[Elder Siebers started his mission with two new pair of shoes.  It's a long story, but let's just say that he was separated for a season from one of the pair while still brand new and they were just recently reunited.  The pair on the right has seen two months of work in Madureira.  Do we think these shoes are going to last another 18 months?]

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