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Monday, May 26, 2014

7 months of the mission are down! 5-26-14

 well tomorrow marks the 7 month mark, it feels like the days are passing by without me knowing what happened to them! its crazy! so here is the news of what has been happening in my life here in Maceio!
monday i got a package! thanks mom and dad for all the treats! i have already started using that "one shoe" haha just kidding! but im hoping that the other one actually gets here! haha needless to say that food lasted like 2 days! haha
but this week started with 2 days of everything falling through! like every appointment we planned got dropped and every backup plan we had dropped to! it was ridiculous! haha but the after those first two hard days, things really took off! we worked every day with one of the members, contatcting a bunch of refereals that they gave us and teaching lots of people! we found lots of people who are really interested and this week we had 4 people visit church on sunday! i didnt know what to do because i had never had so many investigators at church before! haha but it was awesome! we have also been working lots in what is called the "Grota" here, or the flavelas that are in these mini canyons that they have every where here in maceio! dont worry mom, they arent too dangerous! haha but my thigh muscules are getting yoked from walking up and down the hills! we are working with 2 families which has been probably my favorite part! they are progressing really well but they need to get married before we can baptize them! so that is always tricky here, because the judicial system is a little wack! but hopping that they ca get married before the world cup because when the world cup starts, every thing will be closed! the world cup here is literally a holiday! like every one is stocking up on food and stuff because all the stores will be closed during the cup! its ridiculous! soccer is there life here! but things are going really well here! i love the area! we have great members here who help a ton and the people are awesome! training has been a hoot! i get to put my spin on things, which has been nice for a change! things over all, are looking up. its possible that we will have baptisms for every saturday for the next month! hoping that every things works out well!
funny story for the week! we taught the dad of one of the members here, everything we tried talking to him about, he just wanted to argue! it was a struggle! but i was settled on never going back there! i was sitting there on the stand on sunday (because i lead the music) and i saw him walk in! i about stopped breathing i couldnt believe it! hahaha i was seriously so surprised! so that is the funny story about the guy who hates the mormons and every thing we teach and then goes to our church on sunday! haha

well that is about everything from this end! thanks for all the letters, im finally starting to get them through snail mail! so keep sending them! thanks for all the love and support! Até próximo semana!
Elder Ryan

Monday, May 19, 2014

first week as the trainer! 5-19-14

well to start things out this week... i am now training! WHAT???? haha my newe companion is named Elder Cordeiro, or in engish, Lamb! haha but he is really cool! he is eighteen and i can smell the mtc on him! haha but he is really good he is already really prepared and such! he is really good at working with the members, one of the things that im not exactly strong in! but he markes days for us to leave with the members all by himself and has already planned to family nights to take our investigators to! he is a stud! he also teaches really well! its like im not even training him, just helping him adjust to missionary life! i really like working with him! he is really excited and has a real strong desire to do his best! makes things really great and way more fun! my new area is , called... Paradise! haha serious though! and it really is paradise! the members here are really good and help out a ton! members can make or break missionary work, and they are doing so much here it is seriously heaven! haha

we got here and had a paper on the desk that said we needed to visit this old lady who had already been to church 3 times... when we got to her house we asked her if she had already talked to the missionaries, she said only at church had she seen them, but that they had never stopped by her house.. they next thing she asked me was, "what day can i be baptized??" i about fainted i was so surprised!! ive never had anyone ask me that! haha! but we told that we could baptize her this saturday, we taught her all the lessons and such. she stopped smoking cold turkey after we taught her the word of wisdom. she was a super Eleita!! we baptized her this saturday! it was awesome! my companion was thrilled to baptize in the first week of his training! she chose me to baptize her! it was really cool experience! ive never seen anyone so prepared by the lord! i feel like we really didnt do much, we just gave her the information that she needed to hear! 

im really liking being senior companion! it has been really nice to call the shots and finally i feel like my opinion has some weight! haha it has been a really great transition! haha  over all this transfer has started amazing! we also have a possible baptism for this week too! patrick! really all he needs is for his mom sign the form, and after, baptism! things are really looking up here in paradise! really loving it here. my area is in maceio, with lots of flavelas, but its weird i dont feel in danger like ever! haha im sure that if i was here not being a missionary i would walk in half of the places that i walk in every day here! haha! but everything is good on this end! hope that all for you is well! love you all and appreciate all for you letters! 

Dad. you almost gave me a heart attack when you said that the excursion was dead!! haha 

Bom semana por todos! 

Elder Ryan

Monday, May 12, 2014

last week in Viçosa 5-12-14

so last night we had the phone call that lets us know if we have been transfered, and the 4 of us that were here are leaving! i dont know where i'll be heading until tomorrow so i will let you know next week where i am! 

it was great to talk to the fam this last week! super wierd speaking english! haha did i have an accent?? talk weird?? my companion got a pretty good laugh at me struggling to speak english! haha but it was really good to see you all! missed hearing your voices! 

Well the news of what happened this last week! we spent P-day in Maceio this last week because the zone had a barbaque! that was fun but im not such a fan of riding on the bus for 6 hours! haha 



NEW EMAIL:  oops didn't mean to send that one--


so continuing what i was saying!

work wise this week it was a little tricky getting elder Arraes excited to work, we had pretty horrible numbers this week, but i was just happy if we got out and he would just walk with me to some ones house! most of the time he was talking about how the mission has taken it out of him! hahah he was so ready to go home! he left on sunday night! i had a good time being his companion, it was a little tough as it got closer to the time to him going home, but he was good to work with and i learned lots from him! 

thursday we has a zone meeting and it was really good, talked about adapting to your area and how to work better with the members in our areas, got me really excited and was hoping to put some of the things i learned into action here in Viçosa.. but i was transfered! haha

saturday, we had 2 baptisms!!! Leo and Edson Jr. the kids of Edson, a inactive that we reactivated! it was great! but it is too bad that i am leaving now! i feel like the fruits of all of our work that we did here are finally coming forth, and now im leaving! haha 

sunday there was a huge change in the Branch here. a new family moved in which will be great for the branch here. also they changed the branch president here! the new pres. is really excited to work and as lots of really good ideas that wil really help the branch grow, too bad i wont have a chance to work with him, but im realy happy for the branch, things are finally looking up here! 

well that is about all the news i have for this week! im a little nervous about the transfer, it is weird how fast i got used to being here, i feel a little bit like its home! but also im excited for the new challenge of a new area and companion! 

that about sums things up! hope that everyone is well! love you all! 

Elder Ryan

Thursday, May 8, 2014

Report to the Bell Canyon Ward 5-8-14

Jenifer Baxter Johnson jbaxjohnson@gmail.com

May 8
to ChandraBell
Ryan is currently serving in Viçosa Brazil which is quite a bus ride from the mission home.  He finally had a chance to see the beautiful beaches that Maceio is famous for and found out during General Conference that his Mission President Gonzaga has been called to serve as a seventy so hi will be getting a new MP in June.  Vicosa was a thriving branch several years ago that has dwindled to only 15 active member so he and his companion,Elder Arraes, have had lots of challenges trying to reactivate members and find new investigators.  Here's a bit of the bad...and the good he's facing in his own words.  

Early April: 
 we had interviews with President Gonzaga (or Elder Gonzaga)  we talked about how lots of the other missionaries are baptizing more than i am here in Viçosa, but that maybe the purpose for me being here is to learn´patience and how to be persistant! it was a really good interview! i have been having some difficulties because i have been talking with some of the people that arrived here in the mission with me, and they have all been baptizing way more than me! its been hard for me because i feel like i have been working so hard and feels like im not seeing any sucess yet.. but i just need to keep chugging on. Carry on!! 

Mid April: 

Well just when i thought that things couldn't get any worse.. they got worse! haha this week started out really slow! the other missionaries that we live with made things really difficult! one of them started watching movies and playing video games all day and the other one was just sleeping, this wasnt a problem for me and wasnt causing problems with our work until the second day of this. Elder Arreas is only two weeks from finishing his mission. One of the elders, our district leader, was his companion earlier on, and he started talking about how Arraes was leaving and that it didn't matter anymore, that this area is hopeless and it is better to end the mission happy and watching tv and playing video games than it was to end stressed out! Then the problems began! The other 3 in the house stayed up until 3 like every night this week watching movies, and the next day complaining about how they were too tired to work, how the area doesn't have baptisms and that it is better to just wait out until the next transfer to see if the difficulties pass by! This like destroyed everything! haha my companion was pretty unexcited and I was stressed out like never before! I'm surprised that my hair didn't turn gray or fall out! haha but we were lucky to leave the house to work at like 4 in the afternoon this week, and when we were out, Elder Arraes wasn't exactly to thrilled to walk anywhere!.. we got in a little bit of a fight on Saturday morning because I had just had enough of his giving up at the end of his mission! I kind of let him have it! he wasnt too happy after that, and for the rest of the morning things were really tense! but I thinked it helped him out a bit, because we worked all Saturday and Sunday and he got excited again and things are good now! the excitement has been contagious, our district leader is back on track for the most part, the next step is trying to get his companion excited too! its crazy how unexcitement can be so contagious, like it spread like a wild fire in our house! but excitement is also pretty contagious, and its starting to spread these last two days! 

and this last week: 
 well this week was soo much better than the last one!
we have been working with this one less active member for the last couple weeks and this week we started teaching all of his family, none of them are members! it has been great! this saturday we will be baptizing one of his sons, and his brother in law! interesting how things work, just when you think that there is nothing left that you can do, if you just push yourself a little more, to the point where you think that there is literally nothing more that you could do, that is when the success comes! it has been great!  This Sunday was amazing! haha like the best Sunday of my mission! we had 4 less actives come to church again, we had 3 investigators, I taught the young mens class, and I had the opportunity to confirm Manoel, our baptism from 2 weeks ago! it was great! its great to start seeing the fruits of all the work that i have done! 
well Viçosa is full of challanging things! but it is teaching me tons! thanks for all the letters and hope that everyone is doing well!

Love Elder Ryan

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

the weekly news 5/5/14.

well this week was soo much better than the last one! 

we have been working with this one less active member for the last couple weks and this week we started teaching all of his family, no of them are members! it has been great! this saturday we will be baptizing one of his sons, and his brother in law! interesting how things work, just when you think that there is nothing left that you can do, if you just push yourself a little more, to the point where you think that there is literally nothing more that you could do, that is when the success comes! it has been great!

this has also really helped elder Arreas get excited to work this last week! things have gotten a little better, but its about the same situation as last week, lots of distractions and unexcitement! but things have definitely improved over the last week! hoping that we can build on the progress that we had this last week! 

Did a division with my District leader this week. it was good, he is really smart and when he works, he works really well, i learned lots from him. but it drives me crazy because he isnt exactly the most obedient missionary, but has way more success than me! it is kind of annoying sometimes! but just tryin to remember that i will recieve my reward later, that doing what is right doesnt always win the glory of men! but that is ok! doing what is right, even when its hard, is always better! 

The Sunday was amazing! haha like the best sunday of my mission! we had 4 less actives come to church again, we had 3 investigators, i taught the young mens class, and i had the opportunity to confirm manoel, out bnaptism from 2 weeks ago! it was great! its great to start seeing the fruits of all the work that i have done! 

there is only one week more in the transfer, hoping that i can finish it strong! thanks for your letters and emails, they help more than you know! love you all and hope you are all doing great! 

Elder Ryan

MOM: about skype, i will skype you at 8 in the morning here, which i think is about 11 or twelve in the afternoon! i will skype to cats account? or a different one? let me know soon! cant wait to see you all!