Elder Kennedy's Mission Scripture

Elder Kennedy's Mission Scripture:

Omni 1: 26

"And now, my beloved brethren, I would that ye should come unto Christ, who is the Holy One of Israel, and partake of his salvation, and the power of his redemption. Yea, come unto him, and offer your whole souls as an offering unto him, and continue in fasting and praying, and endure to the end; and as the Lord liveth ye will be saved."

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Survived my first transfer!

Things are great down here in old Ponte. I’m stoked to be getting some music sent my way pretty soon (thanks Renee). I’m lucky my companion has a bunch so I haven’t been without, but it’ll be nice to get my own. Thanks for praying for me. I still need help with the language. Sometimes my head hurts trying to keep up in the conversations, but I am paying more attention to what is being said. I’m definitely always out of my comfort zone. I do need to get better at speaking more, but the people we teach are super nice and include me, they always ask me questions about my life, "are you related to Pres. Kennedy?" "Are you from the United States?" Stuff like that. The hardest part for me right now is definitely getting out of my comfort zone and being really open with people, especially when I first meet somebody. After a few visits it’s a lot easier to be myself and share my feelings about the gospel and really listen to the person. I am so blessed to have a wonderful companion who can walk up to anyone and strike up a good conversation about anything and eventually bring the persons attention to the gospel. I’m learning so much everyday and I know I’m getting more and more comfortable as my skills in the language increase.

If you could please pray for our investigator Beatriz. She is so close to baptism I can feel it! Her mom is digging the church too. Carnaval is over with so that’s something. It was crazy hectic. We didn’t get to work to much because everyone was out partying or working, and we had to get back home by 5 o’clock.

I survived my first transfer in the mission! (For those who don't know, a transfer is a 6 week increment in the mission in which you may or may not get a new companion or sent to a new area.) I’m still with my comp and same area. I’m loving my area and my comp helps a lot with the language. Our zone is changing just a little bit. We had the second most baptisms out of all the zones in the mission. We were only one shy of tying. My companion and I had the most contacts out of our whole zone and 2 baptisms in this transfer. Alan did get baptized it was awesome! 10 missionaries showed up for his baptism!! haha he went through a lot of missionaries.

So a lot of you asked about the area I live in. Recife is a beautiful big city. From what I have seen anyway. I´ve only been in the area around the temple and the mission office. There are so many waterways and rivers. Many people use the busses for transportation and the drivers are crazy! I live about an hour out of Recife but I get to visit the temple again this Wednesday so I’ll be in Recife again. I live in Cabo Santo Agostinho, which is a pretty big city area wise. My area is a big neighborhood called Ponte Dos Carvalhos. It’s a really cool area and the ward is great. Everything is so green and tropical. There are tons of fruit vendors and markets that sell all kinds of crazy fruits I have never heard of or seen before. For some, we don’t get running water very often. In fact I have only had about 2 showers with running water so I take showers by scooping up water from a bucket and pouring on myself. The other day the assistants to the president (Ap’s) visited our house because they came to one of our baptisms. One of the assistants used to be in this area probably about a year ago and he said we have the worst house in the mission. Hahaha the mosquitoes here are killer. I’m sure it is because there is a huge river about a quarter mile from our house. Rio Jaboatao, Pernambuco (the state I’m in) is generally pretty dirty. There is tons of trash on the streets. Feral dogs, cats, chickens, and horses just roam around all over the place eating out of the piles of trash. Needless to say I get to smell some interesting things while walking around. In the summer-right now it doesn’t rain that much, maybe 2-3 times a week and not for very long. It will start picking up in about April and rain everyday. People drive around in their cars and blast music. There is always music being played. It is a pretty crazy environment but I’m definitely enjoying it. A lot of people´s homes only have one or two rooms. The floors are usually just concrete. I’ve only been in 1 or 2 homes where the floor was dirt and the one I remember well was when a cat walked in and died.

Hmmm crazy foods I’ve eaten: nothing too gnarly yet. Most meals are rice beans and meat. Yesterday I had crab. I beat the shell of the crab and sucked up the meat. Renee would think that’s gnarly. Joe would be jealous because I’m sure he loves crab. I eat yams, pasta, fish, chicken, rice, beans, steak, pork/sausage quite regularly. Everyone here drinks Coca-Cola and Guarana. Guarana is the best drink on the planet. The nastiest drink I had was Cevada. It’s like coffee but made from wheat and its really bitter. Yes Joe, I love Yerba Mate!!! I’ve had it like 4 times. I’m going to get a bag full so I can have it more often. I’m glad you all had a nice Valentine's Day! I almost forgot but we had a district meeting that day and my Zone Leader’s (ZL´s) reminded me. They are pretty cool. There are only four Americans in our zone including me and there are 13 Brazilian’s or something like that. I like my district leader. He is getting a new companion today.

Mom-that’s crazy that Elder’s are having an even harder time getting Visa’s. I’m so happy I got mine when I did. I know I was frustrated to have to go to Provo but when I was there I loved it and I loved being in Sao Paulo too. Oh yeah there are a lot of “snakes” (women who try to seduce missionary’s) in the mission. I’m glad I don’t have any in my ward, but the missionaries make it known right away when there are “snakes” around or certain areas that have a lot. hahaha I have been proposed to by a lady that was 30 though.

I am so excited I get to go to the temple for the second time on Wednesday. I’m stoked to get to visit Recife again. I love the city and the temple is pretty sweet. I’ve been out for over 3 months! Time is flying by and I know I just need to keep on working hard because before I know it the mission will soon be over.


Elder Kennedy

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