It is official. I have survived one transfer in the field!!! This week went by super fast. And experienced my scariest moment as a missionary, but I´ll save that story for the end of the letter. Big news; I´m staying in Erechim for another transfer with the same companion, and house mates. I´m super pumped that everything is staying the same. This week we returned to Porto Alegre for training. It was crazy to see my American friends from the CTM. It was cool to see everyone’s progress and stories. One of the girls from my district from the ctm has a Fitbit. She says she walks on average 22000 steps a day (just to put things in perspective). Also it is crazy to see the difference of having a native companion makes. Man I feel fortunate to be in the situation I’m in (24/7 Portuguese). Porto Alegre was great. I also stayed a day in Passo Fundo and did divisions with Elder Araujlo and Elder Moreira. Divisions are great because you learn new styles and techniques for teaching. Anyways I’m super pumped for one more transfer with the people of Erechim, but now let’s get to the story.
So we teach this lady named Gillette. She is pretty much a Brazilian Grandma Hawes. She loves animals, cooking, plants, her children/ grandchildren. Sometimes she is a little forgetful, but she is super smart. Also for some reason I can understand almost every word she says. But anyways she is great, and this week we were teaching her when she told us about an incredible dream. She told us how she had a dream about being in a church, dressed in white, with two young men, a font filled with clean water, beautiful music, and her family. We explained how her dream represented a baptismal service exactly. She told us how her family had been fighting a ton of late. She then called for her son who came in the room a little drunk. He sat down and preceded to explain to us how God does not exist and how every religion is corrupt. Gillette tried to defend us but it just ended up being a screaming match. Eventually her son stood up walked angrily to the corner of the room, grabbed a machete, stuffed it in his pants, and stormed off outside. You could say I was panicking a lot. My heart started to race and I prepared for the worst. I thought, how I could defend myself if this guy tries to attack me. My best method of defense = my messenger bag. While he cooled off outside, I thought of a plan. If he tried doing anything crazy I would use my messenger bag as a shield. Eventually he re-entered the room and stood right next to me. I was sweating, breathing heavy, and my heart was racing. When all of the sudden he lifted his shirt and quickly grabbed the machete out of his shorts. In this moment, I reacted. I lifted my messenger bag and chucked it at him... Luckily I missed because he just set the machete on the table. OH MAN... I have never experienced so much panic in my life. I was super relieved that nothing went down. Later we asked him about the machete, and he said he uses it to carve wood.
Anyways there is my crazy story for the week and know that I’m alive and well. Overall, I’m learning so much in the mission and am pumped for one more transfer in this sweet city. The gospel is true, Joseph Smith was a prophet, and the Book of Mormon is the most valuable tool we have access to. I thank you for all your support, love and prayers.