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 27, 2014

29. Madureira, Rio de Janeiro

27 January 2014

Hello Everyone! I hope this letter finds you all well in the cold Connecticut tundra. I for one miss the snow, the cold weather. Its been a hot 7 months for me. July in Provo, August in Arizona and now Nov. Dec., Jan. (or May, June, and July) in Brazil. I cant wait until the temperature begins to decline, which I've heard really doesn't happen until April...sooo yeah! 

We had a solid week here in Madureira. Monday got off to a fiery start when  J told us that a date had been set for the wedding, Feb. 20th!  We also had an awesome family home evening with J and T and Irmã J and Irmão R. We shared a message about the Liahona.  Then afterwards we all ate dinner and dessert and talked. It was FANTASTIC!

Elder P and I have been upping our game, and this week was the first week I've hit the Standard of Excellence for contacts! Its really the only number we can control so its nice to know I'm doing my part. We contacted 210 people this week, and let me tell you, its both exhausting and rewarding. I can feel the words falling out of my mouth, and we also met some awesome families. 

Some of the people we met this week

B and J. It was late Friday night and we already had 49 contacts that day (which is a ton!) and we were walking home when we ran into them. I decided to go with the The Family: Proclamation to the World approach. We talked a little about it and they were interested. B asked about our Church and where it came from. So we shared a bit about the Restoration as well. Then J said she had a question. She told us that where shes from (originally north Brazil) everyone has this idea that the Mormons are prohibited from speaking with people. They say that all the missionaries pass by and talk to no one, and she was surprised that we had stopped to talk to them. Man, I'm really glad we did! I've never heard of this stereotype and it is certainly incorrect! I told them that I can hardly speak the language, and I have a "sotaquezão", or "big accent", and yet I'm out here talking to people all day! They said we could return another day so I'm excited for that!

I asked Cooper how he approaches people on the street and starts up a conversation about families.  Here is his answer:

Hey, excuse me, Good afternoon.

How are you?

My name is Elder Siebers and we are the missionaries for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter day Saints.

Whats are your names?

As missionaries we share a message with families about how the Gospel of Jesus Christ can bless all families.

Do you guys have children?
Do you guys have faith in Christ and God?
Do you guys attend a church?

If they seem interested, not in a hurry, and stopped to talk to us sometimes I'll share a bit about the pamphlet and give it to them.  If not i asked we we can pass by another day and share are message and write down their addresses.

Another contact we had was really neat. We stopped a woman on the sidewalk and her 7 yr old daughter. She said she had been crying and didn't want to be held too much. We quickly got her address and said we would come back. Two days later we went over and had an awesome lesson with her and her husband. Unfortunately we didn't get to talk to the husband for too long because he was on lunch break. But she listened really intently and I think she will keep commitments. They are a really special family. 

Lastly we taught one other family that we contacted last week. They are an older couple with two older daughters, who weren't there for the lesson. We read the entire Family: A Proclamation To the World, pamphlet and they really enjoyed it. They want to come to church but they are booked with traveling plans until Feb. 10th :(

So yeah our area holds A LOT of promise in the next couple weeks! I'm very excited. 

Next Tuesday is transfers. Missing J and T's baptism would be heartbreaking, but I have no say in the matter. I'll let you know next Monday!

Elder Siebers

P.S Bishop took us to Burger King this week so that was a plus!

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