Monday, April 28, 2014

Making it T-RAIN in Maricå

Hey family!
First of all, the title of my last letter was something like ´´All dry in Maricá´´. I didn´t realize until after we left the internet house that I never explained why that was the title. We passed about 4 days last week without water in our house. For whatever reason, it just stopped. Our neighbors said they knew how to fix it, and then they left on vacation for easter, so we were like... well, now what? Eventually a big water truck showed up last tuesday, and we were happy :) Back to taking showers, clean dishes, clean clothes, etc. All the little things you don´t realize that water does in your life.
This week was AWESOME, and with transfers this week, I´m happy to say that I´ll be STAYING in Maricá and I´m training again! Wooohooo I loved training Elder Acevedo back in Ramos, so I´m excited to be training again. I´m pretty dang said that Elder Evans is leaving though. Every day was a blast with him, we got along really well, and we are finally getting the gears running in this branch, so hopefully we´ll be able to continue having miracles with him on the other side of the mission. I´ll find out who my companion is tomorrow, so you all will find out next letter who it will be!
The branch here in Maricá had it´s first activity since missionaries started working here 7 months ago! Elder Evans and I planned with the help of one of our leaders a Family night last saturday night, and tons of people showed up! We were kind of worried that lots of the members would have a hard time attending since the area is pretty big and it wasn´t a sunday, but we had a good attendance of both investigators, less active members and members as well. And on sunday, we had an attendance of 42! We had 5 inactive members return to church that we had been visiting, including Zaira, Maria Parreira, Maria josé, Ana, and Gabriella! We were so happy to have them return to church.
Cremilda was able to attend church with her husband Luiz! We´ve been teaching her for maybe a month now, we had marked a baptismal date with her, but it fell through because of difficulties she had being able to come to church. Now that she visited, and she loved it, we´ll hopefully be able to involve her more with the members and teach both her and her husband so that they can prepare themselves to be baptized as a family. One great footstep on the pathway to eternal life!
Mom had some questions for me to answer, ask and ye shall receive!
What is a typical lunch for me? 
Here in Maricá, there´s no typical lunch. Not exactly, at least. About 2-3 times we´ll eat with a member and their family. Usually it´s Black beans with rice and a salad and some sort of meat, like grilled chicken or beef. People here love juice or guaraná, too, so that´s usually part of the meal. When we don´t have lunch with a member, we´ll usally just eat noodles at home with sauce and meat. Sometimes we cook stroganoff too. That stuff´s the best.
Breakfast or Dinner?
Dinner: It pretty much doesn´t exist here. At least for missionaries. We keep working. For breakfast, I like to eat a grilled ham and cheese sandwich. Sometimes I eat oatmeal too.
How are my shoes holding up?
They are doing fine. I´ve got two pairs that I periodically switch between using. They should both last together at least another 6-8 months. I´m not too worried about it for now.
Advice for the missionary class?
I´m not sure if you´ve already taught about this, but a lesson about prayer would be awesome. And invite them to do an activity where each person pairs up with another person, asks them about each member of their family, then say a prayer, guided by the spirit, directed towards the other persons family. I remember a lesson where Bro. and Sis. Jamison did that, and up until today, it has played a huge role in my mission and I remember it still today. It really helps me to truly pray with the spirit and ask to bless each family that I meet everyday.
I love you all so very much! The Lord really has blessed me here in MAricá, and I´m so excited for what he still has in store for me. Sorry this letter came late and seems a little rushed, I didn´t have much time and had a training during the day today.
Elder Braun

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