Friday, September 25, 2009

Greetings from Spain!, Brazil

Hello hello!
Well, the good news is that Elder Brown made it safely to the mission field. Unfortunately, he was shot 56 times in the head with an assault rifle. Fortunately, due to his enormous brain, he´s just fine.

In all seriousness, the CTM (no I didn´t spell it wrong, that´s the name) is probably the best place ever, other than heaven. The first day we got here was one of the best of my life - orientation, unpacking and meeting the companions, eating (suuuch good food), volleyball, and studying the scriptures. Life surely doesn´t get better than that.
Unfortunately, that was by the far the easiest day we´ve had here. Every other day has been absolutely pedal to the metal, studying Portuguese and how to teach the Gospel almost like a full-time job - like 8 hours a day. That´s been more than a little taxing mentally and physically (especially since I live on the 6th floor and going up the stairs is going to insure an Elder Brown with a very sculpted buttocks), but every second has been absolutely worth it. I´m finally feeling like I can do this, I can learn Portuguese without dying first.
Ok, every email I write will include a quick lesson, so here´s the first
one: thank you = obrigado. It´s used so much that I found myself used to it before I even got off the plane. This has been Portuguese time with Elder Brown. Todo bém! (which means everything from all is well to are you ok...very useful). So I´m sure you already have received the letter from my first night by now, but if not here´s my address for the MTC (if it´s wrong on Facebook have Mommy or Ali update it, please):

Elder Jacob Alexander Brown
Box 31, District 37 B
Brazil Curitiba Mission
Rua Padre Antõnio D´Angelo, 121
Casa Verde, São Paulo, SP
Brazil, 02516-040

Well, to be honest, it´s not really fair that they only give us 30 minutes, but my typing has been pretty good lately so I´ll do my best to include the important stuff this last week. First of all, we were separated into districts; there was a little confusion because there were a few guys like me who were supposed to come on the 9th but ended up here on the 16th, so we will be at the MTC for one less week and our district has been here a week longer than us. Instead of being difficult to catch up with those Elders and Sisters, both in Portuguese and in the social aspect, we´ve all grown very close in the week that we´ve known each other. My companion is Elder Lott, and he´s a stud from Idaho who Ali would definitely have a crush on. The other guys in my room are Elder Hardy from Layton, Utah (easygoing guy who likes sports like me) and Elder Beckstrand (really nice guy with a big heart
- also a breakdancer, which in Utah they call "b-boy", which I admit is a little too gangsta for me...still cool though). They´ve been a great blessing to me because of their faithfulness and desires to keep the rules and work hard - it´s a great district. I was called to be the District Leader and that has been a huge blessing in and of itself - I get to have individual interviews with each member of the district and I´ve been so excited to be able to serve these great people in any way that I can. I´m just mainly trying to be the best example I can, work my guts out on the language and learning how to teach the lessons, serve the district, and more importantly, serve the Lord my very best. I can honestly say that I haven´t wasted a day here, and I don´t plan to change that anytime soon.
In short, it´s been very busy, very overwhelming, and very slave-labor-y, but it´s almost been one of the best weeks of my life because of what we´re
doing: serving the Lord. I want all who read this to know that I know that Jesus is the Christ. I know that this is His Gospel and His church. I know that we can be happier by abiding its principles and rules than by any other way. I love you all with all of my heart, and though I know we miss each other, I´m doing exactly what I´m supposed to be doing.

All my love,
Elder Brown
P.S. send me letters! Please!

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