Wednesday, April 9, 2014

My Week 4/07/14

So the past two nights I have been having the craziest dreams....I kept dreaming about who won the UK bball game!! I was just dying to know if they made it or not! This is no joke too. This happened two nights in a row....then I found out the splendid news! What a game! Time for a championship victory! 

Back to the other news. This weeks has been a good one. My companion leaves in four weeks and he is definitely ready to go home. I even found out that he is getting married in november...he is already planning the wedding with his girlfriend. Some fun stories about my area. I am now serving in one gigantic area...for example, yesterday we walked an hour and twenty minutes to get to lunch. The day before we walked forty minutes to lunch and forty minutes back to catch a bus to the stake center to watch conference. The stories I will tell when I´m older....I used to walk two hours to get to lunch, in the scorching heat of Cuiabá with little to no wind. I lost ten pounds with how much aI sweat that day and barely made it to lunch where I quenched my ever desperate need to drink water.... Life in Cuiabá, hopefully I´ll make it down to the south eventually on my mission where it is a bit cooler. Another elder and I were talking and he thinks that i´ll become the next financial secretary...his reasoning is that my portuguese is coming along well, the timing for the switch is perfect, Americans are always the financial secretaries, and I´m serving in Cuiabá and will be at the time of the switch. We´ll see how that one goes. The air conditioning benefits would definitely be worth it. 

So my companion and I moved into the old Sister´s apartment in Cóxipo. It hadn´t been used for about twelve weeks, so we had to shake off some dust and battle the cockroaches. This is an ongoing battle, but we are winning, so don´t give up on team Louza and Moody. We have had some good times this past week, with conference and transfers this past week, we didn´t get to work very much, so no baptisms yet. Mostly walking and walking some more. We had some fun experiences on the buses this week though. They are pretty crazy...seriously though. 

Language update....I´m doing good. Speaking more and understanding more each day. My companion now has been helping me out a lot with the language, so I have definitely made some good progress. I have been able to start having small conversations with people, so that is a plus. I have been able to improve my teaching as well, so things are definitely going well on the language front. This next week will be a good one. Hopefully I will receive some good news about the game today. Don´t forget to cheer for UK! GO CATS!

I hope you all have a great week. I love you all dearly. 

Elder Moody

P.S. Elder Ellis, my MTC companion, received his visa and has arrived in Brazil! 

Weekly Email 3/31/14

Ow! yup, this is real life! So there is some good news coming from yours truly this week. Rafael our investigator was baptized yesterday! I totally forgot my camera to send a picture but will next week! The other good news, which I don´t think I shared last week was that Jeff, the 11 year old that I was teaching in Washington, was baptized on the 22nd or March! We almost had a miracle baptism with another investigator, Josias, that came to church before. He is totally getting baptized this next transfer though. This is only the begginning of the good news! By the way, Rafael is a stud. He kept his commitments and made some very hard decisions. I will miss him...oops, did I let that secret slip. It´s true, I will be moving to the area next door and opening up a second dupla (companionship) in the area with another Elder who will be going home after this next transfer. I can´t remember his name, but everyone says he is one of their favorite people. The name of the area is Cóxipo, and they had five baptisms last transfer, including the miracle baptism I talked about before. The cool part is that I really wanted to stay in the "area" but move to Cóxipo, So prayers have been answered as things have been difficult with my companion and area this past transfer.

So, the coolest things happened yesterday. We need to rewind to Saturday night at the Show de Talentos. We had a cool skit there. The president of the branch came up with the idea, mom you´ll like this. So it starts with me sitting behind a ping pong table setup to where you can´t see me. There is a sign that says Ponta do Ônibus(Bus Stop). One person enters and is "waiting for the bus" as the bus passes by and they just smell something awful, thinking they smelled, but that just not being it, so they leave. The next enters and the same thing happens, but they think they stepped in dog crap. Then the third enters and the same things happens, because there is just something awful that smells. Then, after they leave, I stand up, look around, "pull my pants up", throw the toilet paper behind me as I walk out and have a piece of toilet paper stuck in my pants as I walk out....the branch president is hilarious. Everyone got a good laugh out of that one. So to jump back to my other story, we met with the Branch President and he asked us to give a training the next day at church for the first hour. Church is flipped here. Sacrament meeting is last. We agreed and so I prepared a short message to give and thinking that I wouldn´t have to cover much time. So two of the elders give their training, then Elder Geisler (the guy from California) told me it was my turn. The strange thing was that I wasn´t that nervous. So I started giving my training, no big deal, stressed the simple things that we need to do, then bore my testimony and that was that...come to find out, when I sat down, that I had taken over fifteen minutes (I was only supposed to give a ten minute training) and thought that I just stumbled on my words or something, because that definitely happens. Throughout church, people were saying thank you for the training and that it was good. I didn´t think much of it, but was definitely grateful for the compliments, because they are a confidence booster. Then, since it was fast and testimony meeting, Elder Pereira got up and bore his testimony and mentioned that the Lord helps us, right? Then he uses my training as an example! I was shocked...he said that after only six weeks Elder Moody can speak and understand a lot. He said I could understand everything, but that´s not true. After six more weeks, maybe haha. So I´m just shocked at this point, then people just kept saying how great I did. It just reminds me of how blessed I´ve truly been, especially with the circumstances I was given. It proved to me that I need to turn to the Lord for help and when all else falls through, He makes up the rest, and in this case it was through the spirit. My heart is just full of joy for all that I have received. 

So in other news, the other elders obtaining bug spray, but killed the spiders! I told them that they should leave the spiders there so we don´t have as many flies, mosquitos, and other things that fly...unfortunately cockraoches move to fast and are to big for the spiders to kill them...but that´s why I have my shoes. This past week we found not one but two frogs in our shower! They were small, but that was crazy! There was some more downpouring rain yesterday, but the good news is that it was a nice and "cold" week this week. That just means the sun wasn´t out as much and we actually had some wind. Miracles. In other news, I just got word that UK made it to the final four!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I hope everyone has a fantastic week. I am thankful to everyone for the prayers, and I hope you feel how they have been answered. It was a hard week, but many great things happened to help me have motivation to move on to the next week. I love you all so much.


Elder Moody

Weekly Email 3/24/14

I don´t know where to begin with this week. My companion was recovering from sickness earlier in the week, so the beginning of the week was a little slow. We were able to get out and teach our Golden investigator Rafael, but besides that, the heat took its toll on my companion who struggled to find energy. The heat here in Cuiabá is just crazy. We faced many days without wind, so your body just struggles to get rid of all the heat from the sun. I´m easily developing a tan. So the weather totally flipped on us though. We have been facing some rain for the past three days, which I´m not complaining about, because it´s better than the heat earlier in the week. Saturday, we were feeling especially energized to work hard to find people home and invite them to church. We made it to a few houses and were leaving a lesson when it started to just sprinkle a bit...then as the minutes past, the rain picked up...we just had one goal, get to Rafael´s house, because we were soaked. He was home, so we were able to dry off and teach a lesson while it was storming like crazy outside. It reminded my of going on a water ride at an amusement park...I mean we were more soaked than that, but that´s the closest thing to compare it to. But see, the problem is that we still had to walk home in the rain....the journey began and we walked through the storm as it stung our skin, walking through flooded streets with the simple dream of being dry again. That´ll be the story I tell when I´m older. We did have to walk through a flooded street, so my feet oficially got wet as the water was fover four inches deep and we had no way around. Anyways enough about the weather. So last night oine of the elders in my apartment woke me up at four in the morning, because he needed a blessing. So i woke up with him standing next to my bed and freaked out a little bit. I just have been having some interesting experiences this transfer!

So, Rafael is this super cool guy who accepted the message from the very beginning. I told you all last week, at least I think I did, that he said he knew the book of mórmon was the word of God the second or third visit we had with him. He fully accepted the Word of Wisdom and has completely stopped smoking. A literal miragle in the making here. I don´t know if I told you all before, but the first lesson we taught to him was the word of wisdom, which the spirit told both my companion and I to teach. He immediately accepted to stop smoking that lesson. The first sunday passed by and he didn´t come to church, but we were able to go over to his place and find him home and take him to church with us. He really enjoyed church and we took him to lunch with us, which was churrasco, and he talked openly with a member about the scriptures...seriously, this guy is a stud. The plan is to set up a baptismal date for next sunday after church, and baptize him before the transfer is over. To end it all, what a week. I love you all and have felt your prayers answered, it has given me the help I needed to overcome many challenges faced each day. I hope you all have a great week! Next week I´ll be able to give you all updates on if I get transfered or just stay here in good ole parque Cuiabá.

If you didn´t know, it was my dad´s birthday yesterday, Happy Birthday Dad!

Elder Moody

P.S. GO CATS!!!!!!

Weekly Email 3/17/14

It has been one interesting week. My highlight of the week...seriously, pay attention to this one...cockroaches fly. They seriously fly! I saw it with my own eyes! I have evidence too for those who don´t believe me. It´s on my camera though, so you might have to wait awhile for it. I´ve tried many more new things this week and I´m pretty sure I´ve tried of fifty new things easily. My favorite was this cherry juice(I think it was cherries) that came straight of the tree! We even went outside again and picked more off the tree. The mosquitos made a solid offensive attack this week. I seem to have bites everywhere. I find myself getting creative to keep them away. At night I put my fan at the end of my bed, then tie my sheet to the end of the bed. This way I can have the bed sheet over me to avoid the mosquitos and be somewhat cool as I sleep. So, if you can picture a fan running at the end of the bed with air being blown under my sheet, creating a "dome". I have to say that I am pretty proud of my idea.

This week has been full of ups and downs. On tuesday I went on an exchange with another elder, which went amazingly well. He was patient with me as I could only speak to him in portuguese. We had some more success with finding people this week and found three more families. We found a few others as well. It was interesting to see how this guy Rafael didn´t want to talk to us the first time we knocked on his door, but when we approached him later, he let us in and had a desire to quit smoking and be baptized. We just have to help him get to church and keep his commitments. That´s definitely the hard part here. We can find people, but we struggle to help them get to church. So, there was a miracle baptism in the area next to mine last week. They were approached by someone who had been to church many times before and basically asked if they could baptize her. So they figured things out and she was baptized this past saturday! That was a pretty cool story to hear. The language is coming along and I find myself understanding people more and more each day. It was been a trying week, so hopefully this next week is better. Oh yeah, my companion got pretty sick this past saturday and late that night he told me that he needed to go to the hospital. So, I have been to the public hospitals here at midnight, pretty interesting. My companion got what he needed and has improved ever since. 

To summarize it all...It has been one crazy week! I love you all and hope you all cheer for the CATS in the tournament, it just makes sense to cheer for them. 


Elder Moody

Weekly Email 3/10/14

Last week I had my first Brazilian BBQ and it was definitely good. We had another one later on in the week too, but they didn´t have any beans, so I felt like something was missing. I have some fish yesterday for almoço, which was interesting. It was like cooking a turkey for thanksgiving, because they stuffed the fish with this stuffing stuff, but the difference was that the whole fish was cooked together, head and fins included. So you had to take a piece and shread it up a bit to make sure that you go the bones out before you ate it. That was some good fish though. I probably tried twenty new foods or dishes this week. The good news is that they were all decent to good and I liked all of them and the even better news is my stomach has adjusted as well. Today I definitely feel way more adjusted to the way of life in the mission here in Brazil.

So the weirdest/funniest thing that I saw this past week had to definitely be when I was walking by a salon place and some lady was getting her armpits waxed...that was...interesting. I was whistled at by some older ladies. Saw a cockroach fly. Hit by some down pouring rain that created a lot of mud, so when I was walking it sucked my shoe off my foot. The heat was definitely relentless this past week too. Just gotta love the combination of heat and humidity. So with all of that sun came a serious tan within a week. It has been quite interesting.

We have had some success this past week with teaching lessons and finding people. The problem continues to be that the investigators aren´t coming to church, so that becomes frustrating. We were out working one day this past week and couldn´t find anyone at home, and it was scorching hot, so we were pretty worn out. My companion had the thought to go visit one of the families in the branch, so we got there and come to find out that the father was in need of a blessing as he was having trouble breathing and had a seriously bad headache. So we were able to give him a blessing and he after taking a trip to the hospital the next day was completely relieved of what was affecting him. From what I got on Sunday, he told me that something was wrong with his face, like he had a rash or something, then after some time in the hospital, the illness left him and he was completely healed. I remember especially understanding when he said that "it was a miracle."

Anyways, the experiences try my patience, but the spirit has helped me in my times of need. It´s great to experience those moments of understanding and to feel happy as the spirit is so strong. We keep working with the branch and hopefully things will get moving and people start coming to church. Until next week, I love you all and hope you have a great week.


elder Moody

weekly Email 3/03/14

Where to begin with such a big week! Just kidding, it was just more adjusting, talking in portuguese, learning the ways of the Cuiaba mission, getting bit by mosiquitos all day long(I was told that the mosiquitos here in Cuiaba are the worst for the mission). So, i just stopped caring about getting bit and am pretty close to just giving in to not killing anymore mosquitos, because they just reproduce so fast...i just love mosquitos. So, everyday, I sweat. When I get back to my apartment, I just sit in front of my fan and try to cool off. Also, being on the bus, while it´s raining, is like a sauna, seriously though. The funny thing is that I love it! Bus drivers are payed by commision from what I hear, so once everyone is on the bus, the bus driver takes off! So if you ever ride a bus in Brazil, hold onto something, for dear life. There are a lot of speed bumps here too. They have speed limits, but no one follow them, because the police don´t pull anyone over for speeding. So, somewhere along the line, they put in speed bumps instead. So imagine with me for a second, riding down the road in a bus, then the bus driver not slowing down too much, and hits the speed of course leave your seat, and enjoy the feeling of butterflies in your stomach as you leave your seat and then reconnect with it. Who needs rollercoasters when you can ride a bus in Brazil? Living life on the edge, like always of course. 

So this week was a little more frustrating than usual. The area I´m in as had some troubles in the past in many degrees and has been evidence to me that we must stay within the bounds that the Lord has set. Rebuilding is pretty stressful in a small branch(especially when you can´t speak the language well or understand much), so we find ourselves working on our own to go find, teach, and bring to church. The funny thing is that you can commit people to baptism, but getting them to follow through is difficult, especially when Carnival is going on. Although there was only a fair in the small town I´m in, the investigators didn´t make it to church, and we think it was due to Carnival. But, we will keep working and trying over and over and over until something starts to happen, even if it comes down the road when I leave the area. 

With Brazil comes a couple of good stories for the week. It was raining pretty hard one day and we were drenched from head to toe, so we decided to try and contact to take a break from the rain and we found Carlos, who is 13. He is really cool and loves to play Crossfire(some computer game, I think). We were also walking on this road in the scorching heat and were stopped by a less active member that we didn´t know, and she told us how she wanted to come back to church and bring her family. She is the only member, her husband isn´t a member, and her four children aren´t members too. That was a cool experience after a long day of appointments falling through. Something I´ve learned this past week is how people are being prepared before we meet them and how the spirit works within them when the time is right and people begin to act. It has helped me to have more patience in the lond run with people having to change. It has been quite the two weeks so far in Brazil and I can´t wait to find out what will happen this next week. I would like to reiterate the fact that I have had more Coke in these past two weeks than in my whole life. Another Elder in my apartment says that this area has a thing for Coke and that I won´t see it much in other places. I have to say that I´ve tried many new many new things. It´s a little overwhelming. They just say here try this and I of course try it and haven´t had anything yet that I really didn´t like. I have come to love Tereré, which is super good. Anyways, i hope everyone has a great week, I love you all and am grateful for your prayers. They are definitely, without a doubt being answered. I have been well taken care of in many ways and have had an easy time adjusting. Until next time, stay Classy os Estados Unidos. 

Elder Moody

Weekly Email 2/24/14

This country is quite different than the United States! I´ve tried a lot of foods that are common here but aren´t in the United States. I had maracujá for the first time. It makes you very sleepy and man was I sleeping after having that. I´ve never seen so much rice in my life to or never have drinken so much coke. I´ve had more coke this past week than in my entire life! Guaraná is another soda that ther have which is amazing. So I live in na apartment with three other Elders. One is from Califórnia and the other two are Brasileiros. It´s nice to have na Elder that speaks english so that he can explain how things usually go and so I can have some encouragement with the different culture. Lunch is quite a big deal here. I have had some good food and some very healthy food that doesn´t have any spices. It´s pretty sweet. From day one, I have progressed significantly in the language. I went from not understanding anything to understanding just a little bit more. I seem to speak better than I can understand. It´s amazing how when I´m in a lesson and teaching, the spirit connects all of the words and helps the people understand. I wish I could have that spirit with me 24/7!

We had a cool experience on Saturday. We were walking to go meet with some investigators and others that we planned on seeing. As we were walking, I looked over and asked if the building I saw was some apartments. My copmpanion said yes and he asked me if I wanted to go over there. I agreed. We went over there and knocked on a few doors and found josais. He invited us in, where I took the lead and taught the lesson, through the spirit of course, and he accepted the invitation to be baptized. This was just the beginning though. We also invited him to church the next day and he accepted, then we went and knocked on his door, then he came to church! We commited him to be baptized on March 8 and he seemed to enjoy church, the members, and everything else. So we were very excited. What this all comes down to was a prayer of Faith. We had prayed earlier that day to find someone who would want to be baptized and the Lord answered our prayers.

This mission is definitely different than Washington. I am glad to be here and can´t wait until I adjust and learn the language better. I definitely enjoy Brazil and love the culture. I am serving in an área called Parque Cuiabá. I forgot to get a Picture with my companion, so I´ll try to remember it for next week. I love you all and hope you have a great week!


Elder Moody