So this title to this email explains a lot about what happened this week! So on Tuesday we had transfers and I STAYED!!! YAY!!!! My comp. Sister Moraes however did not. She went to Guimarães and is ending a Sisters training and I’m TRAINING!!!!! Yep! Training a new missionary from the MTC. Her name is Sister Phipps (fips) and she’s from Washington!! You can imagine how I must have felt; I never imagined...I was really overwhelmed!! Training...but we had to get Sister Moraes on a train like 2 hours after we found out so I didn’t have much time to think about it. I ended up housing 3 other sisters at our house for transfers and the next day I went to pick up my Baby Sister. Literally, Baby Sister! She’s tall, 6 feet, blue eyes and brown hair!! AND! She runs, so she’s athletic, she loves singing (she’s a soprano and I’m an alto, HOW PERFECT!!), she gets Disney, which is really important, and she’s just a HUGE sweet heart. I LOVE HER! She makes training really easy! She’s incredible and I love her so dearly!! Literally, this transfer will fly by because we can always just laugh at anything. We were a match made in heaven. She will say things and I thought that I was saying it. It’s kind of creepy at times how a like we are! It makes me so happy!!!
Anyway! This week I went to get her on Wednesday and may I just say, Sister Phipps came pre-trained! The first day we got to our area we taught the first lesson and she taught about Joseph Smith and the first vision, and at the end she asked me `Sister Hillam, can I testify now?` It was so cute and obviously I said yes! So within the first 3 hours of being in our area she already taught the first lesson, without training. INCREDIBLE!
The next day we ended up teaching the first lesson another 2 times, without much practice and she invited her first person to be baptized!!! Her name is Graciete and she is incredible. We had met her earlier this week with Sister Moraes and said we would come back. Well we did and before we got there she was watching Mormon Messages and she had already read to 2 Nephi in the Book of Mormon. Incredible. So we taught the first lesson and Sister Phipps invited her to be baptized! She accepted and we went over for her birthday on Saturday and she ended up saying that her and her mom would go to church on Sunday and they both came!!! They are incredible!!!! We are currently helping the mom accept baptism and pray to know the truth of the gospel, but they LOVED church and everyone wanted to get to know them. They are doing so well!!
Crazy connection time!! So at the beginning of last transfer we were knocking on a few predios and ended up meeting this lady named Sonia that had already talked to the Sisters. GOLDEN! So we tried passing by a few times but they always said no. They’d been to church and read the Book of Mormon but they don’t want to promise anything. Finally we started talking to the husband José and we’re good friends with him. Well we stopped seeing them because they weren’t progressing. Turns our Graciete is Sisters with Sonia!! So we knocked on Graciete´s door and taught her the gospel and then we found out on Saturday that they are family!!! Crazy! So now we are going to go back to Sonia and José´s house to get them progressing to be baptized with Graciete!! It’s a small world after all. Oh and on top of that, we met with Filipe, the son or nephew of the family, on the street the same day we met with Graciete. God’s plan and timing is perfect. When our will is in line with His, we can literally work miracles and bless the lives of so many people. Incredible story for the week!
We went to Avintes that is part of our area this week on a search for a woman that we found and found her house!!! We had a lesson with them and planned to go back. We’ll be working with that family as well here soon, as well as a few other people from that area! We are having success; we just need to focus our time on those that are really going to progress, that’s the focus right now!
Sadly Carlos has kind of jumped off the deep end. He doesn’t want to give up the catholic church (smoking and drinking cough cough). He just doesn’t see how he can change. But we will keep working! We won’t give up on him!!
We also met a guy named Antonio who’s 28 years old. We had some of the deepest religious conversions that I’ve probably ever had on the mission. He knows the bible really well so when we were talking we were using bible references and everything. It was really strange and we’re told not to do that but we weren’t bible bashing. He’s a member without actually being one, if that makes sense? He just needs to enter the water! He needs to go to church and then he’ll be on his way to the water of baptism. Incredible people!
I love the mission. Love every minute of it. I finished the Book of Mormon for the first time in Portuguese last week and already started over. I plan to finish before the end of the mission again. I love that book so much!! It is the best missionary. I love you all so much!! Thank you for the emails and the pictures. It really makes my day :)