Well, its the last week here in the CTM and Im so glad! Haha it really is an amazing place but you kind of get to a point when youre sick of being stuck in here all day and you just want to get out and start really learning the language and teach real investigators! I should be leaving early in the morning on tuesday to Florianopolis with a ton of other elders! Some more Brazilians came in a week ago so theyll be going out with us as well as three americans, and i think five hispanics? They all seem really cool so I am definitely excited for that.
Anyways updates on this week. Ive got kind of a cool story, we were up in our rooms and we started hearing what we thought was automatic gunfire and a bunch of yelling in the streets right outside the CTM. You would here someone yell really loudly and someone yell back and then a bunch of gunfire. We looked out the windows but the only thing we could see was people just clearing the streets. We have a guy whos dad is from brazil in our district and he said he thought they were just really loud fireworks so we didnt know what was going on. This went on for maybe like 15 to 20 minutes and so later that night we asked our instructor what was happening and he said that it was either just a gang war or a gang fighting the police and then just said it happens all the time! He was walking around when it was going on cuz he lives right next to the CTM and said there were tons of cops going to try to stop whatever it was. Haha Brazil is crazy!!! But were all still alive and safe and the CTM here is like a fortress so theres no way anythings gonna be able to happen here.
This week we got to listen to some awesome speakers! Richard G. Scott was at the Provo MTC last week and they let us watch it a few days later and he gave an awesome talk on prayer and how to better rocognize and understand the spirit. He and Elder Holland have very different speaking styles but in both talks you could feel the spirit so strongly!
The other guy we got to listen to who actually came down to Brazil was Gerald Causse (I think thats how you spell it?) who is the first counselor in the Bishopric of the church I think? Anyways the guy was so awesome! He is from france so he was speaking to us in kind of broken english but the guy was a ridiculous speaker! He was almost as awesome as Elder Holland! I hope he gets to talk in conference sometime because he is so cool to listen to! He talked to us about weaknesses and pride and it was cool because I learned a ton from him! One great thing about the CTM is it shows you really how many weaknesses you have. His talk revolved a lot around Ether 12:27 and it was such a neat experience. In one point of the talk he said "we should rejoice in our weaknesses because the more we have, the more strengths we can develop" and I thought that was so awesome! The guy is way cool! And we got to shake his hand at the end of that as well.
Anyways, Im glad I got to have this experience here at the CTM for the past 6 weeks. I cant believe its been six weeks? It seems crazy! But just like Elder Phillips said in his letter, I feel like Ive changed a ton in the past six weeks and if i were to come home now i would be a different person. Young men dont have to go on missions, and honestly there are amazing people in the church who didnt serve missions! But the way i see it right now is that a mission can transform you in two years of your life whereas normally it would take a lot longer, for me probably my whole life considering the rate at which I am learning more about the gospel. I cant wait to see what life is like in two years and I am so excited to go and start talking with and trying to help the people of Santa Caterina!
I miss and love everybody!