Monday, March 24, 2014

Well, this week was quite the adventure. We spent 14 hours in transit, and 3 whole days out of our area visiting a nearby (by Brazilian standards) city, Sinop. We left on Tuesday, and got back late Thursday night, but the trip there was quite the adventure and it makes a great story.

It begins at 4:00 Tuesday morning. We get up, cleaned, dressed and ready so we can be at the Rodoviaria (bus terminal) before 5. We get there a little past 4:30, and are waiting to get our tickets when we heared one of the police shout, "Para ai!!" Not one second afterwards, some guy ran right by us with a stolen bag over his shoulder. Hot on his heels was the policeman. For whatever reason, the policeman thought it would be a good Idea to stop and shoot at the guy rather then chase him down. So, just a few feet from where we were standing he starts to blast away, BLAM BLAM! People in the station were diving to the ground and taking shelter behind chairs. The Policeman completely missed the theif and so he ended up getting away, but it was quite the wakeup call for my companion and I.
Regardless, we get our tickets and board the bus, prepped and ready for a nice 5 hour bus ride. Little did we know what more this journey had in store. After an hour on the road, the bus broke down (I actually slept through the first 3 hours so this is all relayed by my companion). After an hour or so, we got going again, but the bus wasn't in tip top shape, and consistantly jolted around. Two hours away from Sinop (I was awake by this point), some prostestant group called "sem terra" had set up road blocks and were preventing all passage. The bus stopped behind a line of cars that extended well beyond what I could see. Of course, I wanted to see what exactly was going on, so me and my companion started walking toward the road block. After 40 minutes, we weren't even close (that's how long the line of trucks was). So we headed back. Luckily, even crazy protestors need a lunch break and so the barricade opened up for one hour 12:00 ate 1:00, and our bus was able to make it through. We eventually made it to Sinop at 2:00 in the afternoon. 

In Sinop, we had a great training with the Zone Leaders. They taught about the attributes of Christ section in PME, but in a way I had never considered before. We read and discussed each attribute of Christ, and applied each and every one to our relationships with our companions. The training was super inspired, and I'd reccomend that particular study to any missionary. Those principles are especially fundamental in a good companionship.

After returning from Sinop, we just got to work as usual. Unfortunetally we've accumulated a bunch of "mole" pesquisadores, because both me and my companion like to give people the benefit of the doubt. But, this week will be a great week of refining, and identifying those who really intend to make changes in their lives.

Also, to end the week, President Reber is planning on coming up to visit Alta Floresta this weekend, to get to know the members and investigators, and to give advice and training to both the members and us missionaries on the importance of the commencement of the Church here in Alta Floresta. We are super excited to really end the transfer on a good note, and prepare well for the transfer to come!

Elder Johnson

This last picture is of a monkey half way up the tree near Justus' apartment.  He says they see monkey's quite frequently!

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