This week was louca with transfers and all. [Three Elders and one Sister from our district] were transferred / returned home. It was hard to say goodbye. Our District was the closest district I've ever had and I think that it will probably be the closest district I will ever have on my mission. We were basically family. My companion was "Mainha" (Mommy) and we were her "Filhos" (children). When [one Elder] left, he told us not to worry because familias são eternas. :)
This week I was studying families. I read "The Family: A Proclamation to the World" and parts of "True to the Faith" and "Our Search for Happiness" centered on families. Here in Sousa, I have seen many examples of unhappy families or families with members who do not understand their role in their families. Two of our investigators right now, both women, have husbands who beat them and do not allow them to go to church no matter how many times they plead for permission. It is difficult for me to hear this and hard for me to understand what I can and should do to help these two amazing daughters of God.
Yesterday, my companion and I were speaking with one of our investigators. She told us that she …didn't believe in families anymore. As I have reflected on these words spoken by our investigator, "Eu não acredito em familias”, I have felt pained.
The other day, during personal study, I was looking at the photos I brought with me on my mission of our family. In every single photo of us, whether they contain all of us or just some of us, I can't help but feel the joy and unity that is displayed on our smiling faces and I can't help but imagine little lines connecting all of us to the source of our happiness. That source is the Gospel of Jesus Christ.
On my mission, I have missed many things, whether they be certain types of food you can't get here, my old mission in Tennessee, and even my fellow missionaries who have changed areas or already returned home, but I must admit that I have never missed or felt homesick for [my family]. As I have thought about this in the past, I have felt kind of strange.
Some of my fellow missionaries have called me "insensível" when I have told them this. However, today as I have reflected on this, I finally realize why I have never felt that longing, aching pain felt by many missionaries. It is because although there may be thousands of miles separating [us] right now, I can still study, remember, and reflect on the source of our happiness. I can still feel those lines connecting us together and right now I believe that those lines are stronger than they have ever been before as my testimony of the Restored Gospel of Jesus Christ grows stronger each day and as my knowledge that we will be together forever is embedded in my heart and mind.
I love y’all so much and am so grateful for the Gospel of Jesus Christ that blesses our family every day. Unlike my investigator, I BELIEVE IN FAMILIES and will PARA SEMPRE!!! Familias são a parte central do plano de Deus e eu estou animado para começar uma outra familia quando eu volto a casa (mas eu estou tentando não ser trunky então eu não vou pensar sobre isto agora)
[On the] day of transfers, our apartment building was infested by bees. We couldn't go downstairs (no elevator) to pick up my roommate’s new companheira and instead had to stay inside for three hours until the people came to get rid of them. It was weird and kind of scary. My companion is allergic to bees so if one stings her her respiratory tract will close up and she will die. Like I said, scary, but the people finally came and all is well.