Well, here in Araraquara today, it's a chilly 25 degrees with cloudy skies and threats of more rain! That's the kind of weather that I like to see! It seems like the weekends here like to stay rather cold, but then it gets super hot during the week. Which means that people don't always go to church... If it rains, everyone stays at home because of laziness and lack of desire. That's pretty frustrating to me, considering how much it actually rains in Oregon compared to here. But that's alright! That's where I'm here for! To help the people come to church even when it is raining!
So this week was rather difficult in terms of the work. We knocked doors. Every day. And had almost no success. I will give you an example of a normal door contact here.
Dona Maria - "Oh, I already went to your guys' church and I already know lots of members of your church."
Us - "That's great! How did you like attending the church? Were you baptized?"
Dona Maria - "I liked it, yeah. But I don't remember much about it. I went like 20 years ago. I never got baptized because I already have my own church."
Us - "Ah, I see. Well did you ever have the chance to read the Book of Mormon?"
Dona Maria - "No, I never have. But I read the Bible."
Us - "That's really good. Would you like a chance to read more of the words of God?"
Dona Maria - "No, that's alright. I already have the Bible and that's all I need."
(Insert 2 Nephi 29 here...)
Us - "Alrighty then... What church is it that you attend?"
Dona Maria - "Oh, I don't go to church."
Us - "..."
Dona Maria - "I think the work that you young men do is beautiful, but I don't want to mix my religion with yours. One God, one faith, one baptism, right? We're all worshiping the same God, so I think we're all good."
Us - "Alright, have a good day."
And then we leave. It's quite obvious that almost nobody here wants to accept us... However, we are being blessed with other people who are helping us out. Our ward mission leader here knows pretty much everyone in the city, so his connections are helping us found people a lot. Also, we had a new young man move into the ward recently. He is from Ribeirão Preto Ala 1. If you remember correctly, that's a ward that I already served in! I knew that I recognized him from somewhere, and he said the same thing, and that's when we realized the connection. He's now living here with a different part of his family (who aren't members of the church), so he asked us to go to his house this week. We're going on Tuesday. It should be pretty great!
We might have a baptism this week... I'm still not sure how solid it is. But many prayers and some fasting and we'll see what we can do!
So a couple of a weeks ago you asked about tan lines and junk... Well, I took some pictures of my arms for you to see. It's pretty great. And it'll only get worse, I'm sure.
Hope you all have a fantastic week! I know I will! Interviews with President on Wednesday! Woo!!
Love you all!
-Elder Hopper #1