Pics: Bryan and Innes (recent baptism) and Bry & another missionary:)
So, first off, alaina broke her arm?? How did that happen? Is she having a good time at the dub? I hope so. I miss purple.
So, for Halloween, there aren't any treats or activities planned. Halloween is basically an american tradition. I had even forgotten that it was going to happen this Saturday. Sometimes there are parties over in Sao Paulo, since everything is just crazy there, but I havent seen much here in Sao Roque. One club is going to throw a halloween dance party, but that is as much as I've heard from anyone.
Since you asked...I always feel bad asking for money for Christmas, but the next things that I'll need are all big purchases when I get home, like a computer, cell, ski stuff, etc. So from my family that's really what I need...I'm in pretty good shape here except for the basic supplies you send every month. Man, yeah, i heard about Mykenzie. I hope all gets better there. She is such a nice person.
Thanks for the email from Elder Laytons blog! I cant believe he is a trainer and a District Leader now! Thats sweet! I wish he could send me a letter, but he doesn't really have the funds for that. Just, if his dad ends up sending this, let me give him a SHOUT OUT and a CONGRATS for all the good work he is doing.
Also, some shout outs too Lauren Lytle...received your letter and sent one back today! I loved the card! Grandmother...Received your letter and articles, thanks! I will reply next week! Paige Hasenoehrl...Thanks for the letter! I will send one back asap
Onnnnnnnnnnnnnnnn to the week Well, things are just SO awesome here right now. I am super super stoked with the baptism that we just had on saturday! Her name is Ines and she is 38 years old. She has one daughter, Claudia (17), but the daughter is a little bit more stubborn. Ines is a huge landmark for me here in Sao Roque, because she is the first baptism for me here that was not a member reference, jsut a result of good ol hard mish work. She is super excited about the church and loving it all.
Also, we are having some awesome progress with some of our other investigators. One, Heloise (28), is a single mother and has been super excited about the church. However, she still hasnt gotten to the chapel. The cool part is that, without us even teaching the Word of Wisdom, she has cut down her smoking habits from 40 cigs a day to 10, just cuz she felt that she needed to! Love it!
I dont know, there is just the normal good stuff going on here. We are teaching tons, seeing miracles, giving priesthood blessings, listening to people tell us how God has answered their prayers and that they KNOW that the church is true. I sometimes lose sight of it, but this is the best part of mish work, the day to day miracles that are always happening and that the normal world doesnt here anything about.
The other super cool thing this week was that Elder Richard G. Scott of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles came and held a conference with our mission! It was super cool. He truly is an apostle of the Lord Jesus Christ. We did practice lessons with him, talked about doctrine, and took pictures with him. I even got to talk to him for a little bit personally during one of the intermissions. I went up, basically started crying already. He told me to just be a good example, write home about good stories, and have faith. Plus, he talked to us a lot about marriage and making it our first priority when we get home to find an eternal companion. He didn't put a time limit, jsut said that it needs to be our priority to find the right one.
Well, thats about it for this week. It was super fun. Plus, we got a couple of wacky quotes from drunk people this week. My personal favorites are "Its a tough life without water and a wife" and "Do you worship God, the Eternal Father, the Creator, the Owner of the Toy Company, etc."
Somehow I missed posting a week...so sorry, I was traveling...Mom, the bloggedrmaster. Here we go...So, yeah, transfers came and went and i am still here in Sao Roque with Elder Schoen!!!! YESS Things are going pretty good. But yeah, sorry about not sending pics last week, we both didnt send them because the computer was being stupid. oH WELL, it happens. This weeks pics include a Brazilian sunset and Theodore, our pet cactus. There was another picture but had problems downloading it...
As for a christmas list...im not sure i really have one. My biggest thing is that i am gonna need some stuff when i get back, and i am already thinking about that...like money to build a computer. Other than that, i guess something that Maybe a new SD memory card for my camera...starting to run out of space, would be nice to just start over with a new card. Maybe the Showtime and Xmas cds by MOTAB would be good too. Thanks!
Oh, quick shout out to David Cruz! E ai cara, obrigado pelo email! Parece que as coisas tao indo bem ai. Nao acredito que quase atrapalou uma mulher! Tome cuidadooO! Mas ainda bem que voce vai para um baille, infelizmente nao vou poder ir contigo por algum tempo ainda. Tou treinando e aindo tou na minha segunda area! è chique aqui...espero ficar ate janeiro, mas duvido que vai acontecer. E Parsons e meu novo LZ! Caraca ne! te amo
but yeah, so, here we goooo to the week
so, this week has been super weird. Im not sure what to feel about it. There was a three day stretch there, from Thursday to Sunday, that was the longest three day stretch of my life! We walked a ton and had all of our appointments fall, was rough. But, we ended the week with a bang on sunday and since then everything has been awesome.
I am super excited for the baptism that we should have on Saturday. I have been teaching this lady (Ines) since August with her daughter and it has been quite the fight. I think the difference maker with this lady was that she took the effort and went to General Conference. She is super awesome. Her daughter (Claudia) probably will get baptized someday. I can tell that she knows the gospel is true, but it seems like she is having some social pressure and stuff like that. Anyway, she will be going to the baptism on saturday and probably church on Sunday so I have big hopes for the future.
Also, good things just keep happening all the time. Elder Schoen and I made some awesome goals to help us be better missionaries for the next transfer. Already it is making a difference.
But, the best thing of the week is that Elder Schoen and I celebrated our sticking together by buying a cactus for the apartment! Yeha, his name is Theodore and he is awesome. Picture will be included in separate email.
Last weeks email...
Thanks for letting me know about mommom (Bryan's Great Grandmother passed away last week). Im glad that she was able to go away peacefully. I am especially glad that you got to see her. She was a special lady.
Onnnnnnnnnnn to the week Well, things are still going excellently here in Sao Roque. However, we are definitely starting to hit our road bumps...nothing can be so perfect forever. I think it is just heavenly father reminding us that we cant be on cruise control and that we have to really fight for the people that we are teaching. Especially our new investigators who dont really have a pattern of studying or praying or going to church yet.
In other good news, we had a baptism! The drought is over in Sao Roque haha. Gabriela was baptized by her older brother Elvis and confirmed by the bishop the next day...it was awesome. She was super happy. Now, all we need to do with her is keep following up with her and make sure that everything is still going good.
In other news, that family that we took to the temple is now super into the church. They want to be baptized as soon as possible. Everything is just clicking for them now..it is super exciting. The coolest thing about it was that Antonio, the dad, told us that the difference maker wasnt just the temple, but that we didnt stop visiting them or giving them support when they said that they werent interested in getting baptized, that we were the ones that stuck with them giving them support when they most needed it. Super cool.
I think that is just about it for this week. We are talking to people and really trying to help people out gaining their own testimonies of the church and everything. Plus, things seem to be going pretty well in the district. Im as happy as ever with the work and excited to be here in Sao Roque.
Also...super stoked that the Dawgs pulled out a win! WOOF!
Last week we received a letter from Bryan's previous companion, Elder Gouveia. It was all in Portugese. I tried translating it in Google, and got the general message, but fortunately a Returned Missionary visited our ward today, he just returned from Brazil a month ago. Thank you to Brother Musle for a very quick translation. I shared this with our ward in Testimony meeting, written to the Young Women and myself as a thank you for sending Elder Gouveia a Birthday card. Bry's Mom
Hi. Frankly I don't know how to speak or write English. Thank you so much Sister Briggs for the letter and thank the Ward girls as well for wanting a Happy Birthday for me. I rarely recieve any letters. I would like to note 10 things I learned with your son. 1. Friendship. 2. Have a just purpose in life. 3. Toilet Paper - double is better 4. Dance just like Michael Jackson 5. To sing "Strangers in the Night" like Frank Sinatra 6. It doesn't matter where we serve but that we always serve him. 7. Have a lot of patience. 8. That I have to read Harry Potter after the mission. 9. That God has a path prepared for us, we just need to follow without fear. 10. And the Dawgs are better than the Ducks. Clearly I have learned more than 10 things with your son. I learned the most important things, about the gospel, life, etc. Elder Briggs is my best friend. Always be strong and happy! Elder Gouveia
So, first off, Rosangela is a sister here in the ward that takes very good care of us mishies. She's great, yes... go ahead and be her facebook friend.
The 179th Conference was awesome. There is always a room here for English, so I watched the entire Conference in English. The entire Sunday afternoon session and the priesthood sessions were awesome. Elder Holland's talk is especially awesome. It's on youtube at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ld0_7fKGdRM
And yes! I did get the box you shipped. Haha, it was awesome. I can't believe you sent me a ping pong kit. E. Schoen especially loved it haha...here's his note:
Dear Mama Briggs, I would just like to start off by saying that you are bomb.com and that I love you! The ping pong set was genius and we are most definitely going to make use of it! Thank you so much! With all my love, Elder Schoen
Yeah, as you can see, he thought it was pretty awesome
But doesn't having a study journal (writing about the scriptures as you read them) help so much! I have learned so much more since I started keeping it here on the mission. My scriptures have more highlights than a college textbook! Serial. Glad that you liked the Gouveia letter (to be added to the blog soon). I'm glad that I was able to help him out a little bit...
Oh, received Makelles letter, and thanks for the ties! They were awesome. Actually, I am using the gold one that cuz sent me. You reading this cuz? Hope all is going well! Sent you a letter back today
Also, received mailing from Paul! Thanks! I sent you a letter today! Grandmother! Thanks for the stufff, also wrote to you.
Onnnnnnnn to the week Well, the main things of the week were kind of tough since its been not only two days of General Conference, but we lost another day of work because of zone conference as well. however, it has all been going amazingly well still. The lord just keeps blessing us with more and more of the elect. Even better, the other awesome people that we are teaching have started introducing us to their friends for us to teach as well! Just goes to show, the Lord blesses you when you follow the rules and you do things for amor (love) instead of dor (pain).
For example, one lady that we found (and committed to baptism) first knew the missionaries 10 years ago when they lived right next to her! They used to go there all the time, eat with her, help her paint her house, and even got her to church once! However, the area was closed and since then she never got into contact with the church again, until monday. Then she was super happy to see us and to get another book of mormon and find out that she could still enter the church. Talk about planting seeds, right.
Also, the big story this week is what happened yesterday. You remember the family that I've been teaching for a while whose son committed suicide earlier this year? Well, we organized a trip and we took them to the temple in Sao Paulo. It was incredible. We were able to show them the temple grounds and then even enter into the waiting room inside the temple to teach them about the purposes of the temple, the sealing of the family, and baptism for the dead, basically how they can still have their son together forever. It was hugely spiritual. We even had a temple worker come in and talk to them, it was perfect! Afterwards, they were all happy and smiley, and even laughing! It was the first time that i have ever seen the mom laughing and happy. Just goes to show how the temple can feed people's spirits.
Also, we had a baptismal interview and the girl passed! All should be well for my first dunking since the end of June. Its gonna be awesome.
Also, whoever is following the blog you are awesome!
Two pics from last week...one on the railroad tracks...the other of our breakdancing recent convert
I forgot to tell some other stories this week, but i think Elder Schoen got them covered on his blog. Long stories short, one night we returned home to gallons of water in the middle of our floor...crop circle style, not coming from anywhere. Also, we got our hands kissed by a drunk guy yesterday when i bought him some food. Yeah...go mission! This weeks pics...well, one is of me and e schoen learning how to cook and the other is my roasting a tie in celebration of being on the mission for a whole year!
Hi from Brazil....One of the members of the ward wanted me to ask if there were any familes willing to host his 18 year old daughter on an exchange thing. She wants to go into graphic design. Maybe you could ask Dr. Baker or something about how the exchange program works? Who knows.
Onnnnnnn to the week
Well, things just keep going amazingly well here in Sao Roque with E. Schoen. People are progressing, we have got baptisms coming up, and things just keep happening. Sure, we have had some difficulties as well with some investigators, but as we just show our obedience and our diligence and how much we love the people, God does miracles for us.
One thing that is going on that is pretty cool is that we were able to find a couple new families this week. They are awesome! One family lives in Sao roque and the other lives over in Mairinque. They are both just the golden investigators. Basically its that one way where they are..."well, im looking for a church right now, just want to find the place that feels right to me" yeah...its awesome. Both families accepted baptism dates. Im very stoked to keep teaching them. One family even is going to give us lunch tomorrow! Yee haw
Another girl that we just found (the one that lives in Mairinque) is awesome as well. she is 23 years old, has 4 kids, and is a widow. Yeah, i know, hardcore right? But yeah, she is super excited to learn about the church and is even going to go to General Conference this weekend. Score!
I dont know, its weird, there is so much good stuff going on that i dont even really know what stories to tell! Just let it rest that things are still going amazingly well here right now, that the Lord really is blessing us a lot. I dont think I have ever had so much sucess or been so happy here on the mission..things are awesome.
Oh! Fun story. Today, we went to Irma Rosangelas house to learn how to make brazilian stroganofe. It was super good. I got to make it and learn, and then I will be able to make it for everyone when I get home! It is my favorite dish so far that I have eaten here. So good!
Elder Briggs is an LDS missionary serving in the Brazil São Paulo North Mission. This is Bryan's online journal posted by his Mom. Your comments on the blog welcome. Snail mail costs .98 per letter (new rate). PLEASE WRITE!!!
Save the dates:
HOMECOMING DATE: Thursday, September 16 arriving around Noon at Redmond Airport
Speaking in Church: Sunday, September 19, 9am, Cascade Crest Ward, Bend, Oregon. You are invited! My friend Jonathan will be coming down and we will sing a song in Portugese together. Open House that night...come on over!
Still time to write a letter - too late to send a package:
Elder S. Bryan Briggs Missão Brasil São Paulo Norte R. Dr. Rui Batista Pereira, 165 Jardim Caxingui São Paulo - SP 05517-080 BRASIL email: Elder Briggs can not receive emails or respond to emails, please write via snail mail. If you need to get news to him asap...you can send an email to his mom at firstname.lastname@example.org
We will update the site frequently with photos, Much of the content is directly from Elder Briggs weekly emails to his family and will be italicized.
Elder Alves, Brazil
Elder Brent Parsons - Orem, Utah
Elder Bryce Perry - Austin, Texas
Elder Mosiah - Fortaleza, Brazil
Elder J.D. Schoen - Mesa, AZ.
Elder Gouveia - teresópolis, Rio de Janeiro
Elder Matos - Fortaleza, Ceará
Elder Cruz - Balneario Camboriu, Santa Catarina, Brazil
Elder David Martins - Minas, Brazil
Elder Josh Schooley - SLC, Utah
Elder D. Brian Sinden - Puyallup, WA
September 16 - Flying HOME
Transfer, Mission Office, Sao Paulo, April 7, 2010 New Companion, Elder Parsons/July, New Companion Elder Alves