Sunday, June 30, 2013

Hello family.  Good morning this is Elder Hoskin on the 24th of June, 2013.  That means that there is a little less than two months left on my ministry so I need to make the most of my time that I possibly can.

It’s actually getting pretty cold out.  I think that winter has officially started here and by that I mean 60 or 65 degrees but it’s still cold for me because I’ve gotten use to the heat hear.

This week was a pretty crazy week.  We had our zone conference on Thursday which was the last zone conference with President Tavares.  So we went to Marillia  and it was a pretty good experience.  It’s kind of sad because it’s his last one but it was good because we got to end it on a good note.  I also got the opportunity to see a lot of friends and it was just a really good experience.  We talked a lot about the sacrifice of the pioneers and it shows the sacrifice that they made for us so that we could be here today.  We also talked about the sacrifices that we make as well and how they are so little compared to the pioneer’s sacrifices.  We listened to the story of John Tanner which is a really good story.  We also watched a video on the Church website about John Tanner and now I’m a lot more interested to hear stories about our family histories and our pioneer ancestors and to hear cool stories about them like their sacrifices to be able to do what Heavenly Father wanted them to do.  When I get home I will be looking up some of those stories because I know that we have them around.  So that was a good experience. 

Marillia is only an hour away from Bauru so we didn’t have to leave crazy early or anything.

So I don’t know if you have been noticing but there have been a lot of protests lately in Brazil.  On Tuesday there was a protest in Sao Paulo where a couple thousand people protested about the bus and taxi prices and the next day there were even bigger protests in over 100 cities.  So all over Brazil there have been protests about how ridiculous the bus prices are because everyone takes the bus.  So the busses in Bauru have been on strike for all of last week and the area that we work at is about 1½ hours from our house walking and you have to walk about ½ hour on the highway so it takes a really long time to get there.  At the same time, you won’t be able to get investigators to walk to church because of the highway so we had to arrange car rides for everyone so that’s been a challenge to our missionary work this week.  But then, last Sunday was the most tired I have been on my entire mission but it was ok because it was worth it.  We had to get up at 4:45 and we had to be out the door by 5:30.  So we walked the 1½ hours to are area and got there at 7:00.  So at 7:00, we started waking up everyone.  So then everyone got ready and the car rides came and it was 8:00.  So we left again because there wasn’t room in the cars because there were lots of investigators, which was good.  So me and another missionary left at 8:00 and we got to the church at 9:30 we spent 3 hours walking before 9:30.  But it ended up being really good because we had a lot of investigators there and it was really worth it.  But that doesn’t hide the fact that between 2:00 and 6:00, that was the most tired I have been on my entire mission.  And it wasn’t sleep tired or being sleepy,  it was exhaustion.  It was good though because we were able to learn about sacrifice in our zone conference and whenever I set out the plan to wake up at 4:45 and to arrange to have everyone picked up, I knew it was going to be a sacrifice.  But I knew that it would be worth it because I knew it would be the best thing for our investigators to get to church so it was totally worth it.

So my companion has two weeks left in his mission and, do you remember how it was with Elder Senna, the other missionary companion that I had that ended in Maringa? It ended really well because we worked a lot and he had the attitude of it’s not over until it’s over.  However, my companion right now has some opposing attitudes.  He’s breaking down as it gets closer to the end and so its been kind of difficult for him to do 100% of the work because, mentally, he’s kind of out of it and so, what I have been doing is I’ve been doing everything possible in my capacity.  An example is that Saturday night, we were at family home evening at a guy’s house in our ward and there were probably 30 people there including the bishop.  So my companion was just having a good time and eating cake and talking to the members and I was having a good time to but there were two people who were there that weren’t member of the church.  They were friends with the guy hosting the event.  Anyway, I have been going nuts lately trying to find every opportunity to teach the gospel to anyone because my companion has been kind of lazy about it.  Anyway, I started talking to this couple and tried to see how they were doing and then I ended up teaching them the restoration and giving them Books of Mormon.  It was fun because this was in the middle of the party and everyone could tell that we were talking about gospel stuff and they were really interested and they said “Wow, I’m going to read this book and I’m going to see it it’s true.”  So it was a really good experience but it shows that, right now, what I have to do with my companion is to continue to keep the pace that I want to keep going.  I had to teach them in the middle of the party and it was all by myself.  Also, any time we are doing anything that doesn’t involve sitting down and teaching a lesson I try to find ways to teach a lesson like talking to non-members that are in the houses that we go to.  So it’s been an interesting experience.  But I won’t say too much else because I’m not supposed to talk bad about my companion.

So our zone is doing really well and I was really, really tired going to bed last night so last night I was knocked out but I woke up this morning feeling a little bit better.

I want to know what you guys think about that crazy audible that I suggested about traveling to the Campinas temple when we are in Marillia.  Campinas is about 3 hours away from Marillia.  Even though it would be kind of a hike, it would be completely worth it because I passed through that temple when I was at the MTC and you guys would be able to say that you passed through a temple in Brazil.  I think that, other than Iguacu Falls, this would be the highlight of the trip.  Also, even though the falls will be cool, the temple will be more cool because we lead gospel centered lives so a trip to a temple in Brazil would be awesome.  So just think about it and let me know what you think.  Also, we wouldn’t have to stay over night.  We could drive there and drive back.

Everyone who was in my group of missionaries when I first got into the field are leaving in two weeks.  So that’s been interesting because at our final zone conference I heard some of them give their testimonies.  But I don’t really think about that.  It really hasn’t come to me that I shouldn’t have stayed one more month or that it stinks that all my group is going home.  It feels really natural staying here one more transfer so I’m grateful for that.  I’m also very excited for this next transfer because, no matter what happens this next transfer, it will be special because I wouldn’t be able to have the experiences I am going to have if I wouldn’t have stayed.  That means there are going to be people that I am going to be able to help that I haven’t been able to help before.  So I’m very thankful for the opportunity.

So that’s about it for this week.  I miss you guys and I hope Desmond is doing well.  I also hope that Joseph and Alayna are doing well.  I hope Abby and Jenny are doing well .  I miss all of you but I’m not getting to trunky at the end, because when I think about it, I don’t really get homesick because in two months I’ll be there.  So I don’t get homesick at all.  Maybe it was a different story when I had been on my mission for 8 months but now, when we are so close to the end, I don’t get homesick because you just need to finish your mission out as best you can. 

I love you.  I hope you have a great week and I will talk to you later.

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