Sorry this picture is a from a few weeks ago, but this was our “Mission Tour” with Elder Robbins of the seventy. The whole mission is there (with only like 40 people missing). I am in the top row.
It’s been almost 2 weeks since I’ve written, so I will try and remember everything that has happened since I last wrote!
My last week in Saco dos Limões was busy. We left Saco dos Limões on Wednesday, and already headed off to the center of Florianópolis. Because of transfers, the last week of the transfer and the first week of the transfer are always really busy! President usually gives us the list of transfers on Tuesday, and then the assistants start making the transfer schedule. They have to arrange at what time people will leave their area and go to their next. That took about 2 days, and then they gave that to me on Thursday, so I could start buying the bus passes for everyone. That took me all of Thursday.
On Friday, it was a holiday here in Florianópolis, so I wasn’t able to buy tickets. I spent the day printing things for the new missionaries to sign when they got here.
On Saturday, the 3 missionaries going home from the office started packing their bags and getting ready to go home. I then started cleaning up the house a bit and started unpacking my suitcases. I also did a little bit in the office to get ready for the new missionaries getting here.
On Sunday, we went to church here in the center, and met some of the members of the ward. Because of the office work, we only eat lunch with the members on Sundays, so we went and ate lunch with a family in the ward after church. We visited some members afterwards that the other missionaries in the office had been teaching.
On Monday, it was the real first day alone as the executive secretary. I mostly spent the day buying bus tickets and doing last minute preparations for transfers. That night, we ate dinner with the missionaries going home at President Silva’s house.
Tuesday was probably one of the busiest days ever! Missionaries started going to the airport already at 6:00 am, and then I was in the office getting everything ready for the arrival of the new missionaries. They got to the office around 9:30 am, and all the secretaries gave a training to them. I explained a little about the mission, and what I do as Executive Secretary. It was really funny to see all the Americans, fresh from the US, and not able to speak like anything in Portuguese! They were trying really hard to understand the other secreatries as they learned about the mission. On of the best parts of each transfer is when the new missionaries get to the mission. Then it reminds you how far you’ve come!
I frantically ran around grabbing people’s documents, passports, visa papers and random other documents for a couple hours. I scanned in the Brazilians’ documents, because I had to give those back. I just kept the foreigners’ documents so that I could scan them later.
At the lunch with the new missionaries, I started telling them about something called açai, which is a frozen fruit dessert thing, that they have here in Brazil, and that we were going to eat for lunch. They looked at me like I was weird or stupid or something, and then told me that they have açai in the US! So, apparently in these 2 years that I have been gone, açai has become the new Frozen Yogurt or something trendy like that!
On Wednesday, I spent the day scanning in documents and getting things ready to go to the Federal Police Station, to request that the new missionaries addresses be changed to Florianópolis from São Paulo. I also picked up some identity cards for other missionaries.
The rest of this last week, I spent getting some reservations and other things ready, because I needed a bunch of signatures from President before he traveled for zone conferences. Everything was going great and on schedule until yesterday, when the internet stopped working! So, yesterday I was really limited in the work because of that! It makes me realize how much we all depend on the internet!!
This upcoming week, we will have more time to actually do some evening proslyting, so that will be awesome! So, instead of some cool teaching stories, I’ll bear my testimony!
In this time of General Conference, I am really grateful for living prophets! I know now, more ever that God works through living apostles and prophets, and that he inspires them for our days! I know that Jesus Christ lives, and that he provides a way for all of us to return and live with our Heavenly Father again!
I hope that everyone has a great week, and that everyone takes some time to watch General Conference!!!
Your favorite missionary,
Élder Spencer Reece Peterson