Monday, June 24, 2013

Week 32

Olá Família!  

So, this is going to be a quick email, hopefully packed full of good information. 

The first super exciting news that I have is that I received my package that Alicia sent! Yeah!! I have new clothes and I can officially start sending pictures from my camera! Thank you thank you thank you! The package was pure joy in a heavy box! 

Second news... RIOTS. Brazil is going crazy and from what it sounds like to me Brazillians all over the world are going a little crazy. I dont know all the information, but this is what I know is going on. There are riots... big ones happening all over the place in Brazil. Here in the capital is definitely no exception. It started with the people being mad about prices for transportation going up and the government spending billions on new stadiums for the world cup when their hospitals are lacking in a lot of things that they need. Right now their is a spotlight on Brazil because of all the soccer games they are playing to see who will be playing in the world cup next year. So the people are revolting, doing demonstrations and such. Everywhere we go the talk is either about the soccer games or the riots. Sister Victorio had to travel to the mission office this week and we got stuck at the bus stop for a while because of the people and the buses were having trouble coming a going. Luckily we got a member of our ward to pick us up for the trip back to Ceilândia. 

We have two investigators with baptism dates marked for this week. Mira and Amelia... So everyone pray that all goes well with them both. I bought Cervada which is fake coffee for Amelia, so I am hoping that will help her not drink coffee. We shall see. 

Funny story. Actually, just a funny fact. Cocaine is legal in Bolivia... I guess. Sister Victorio was offended when one of the recent converts we were talking to told her that it is a drug. She said that it cant be a drug because it is a plant, I told her that marijuana is also a plant and a drug. She still doesnt think Cocaine is a drug, but I thought it was funny. 

Things here are going well. We are working hard, we have a ton a people that we are trying to keep track of still, but things are going great. Last night there was a broadcast from the Marriott Center of all the new mission presidents being called. We got to watch and it was awesome. I highly recommend the talks for... everyone! I love you all and I hope that you all are happy and healthy! 

Sister Hoopes

Ps The ´pictures... 1. is at the mission office. 2. Is one of me and a recent convert ariane in my new clothes! ... yeah! 3. Sister Victorio and I... half an hour ago. =) 

Monday, June 17, 2013

Week 31

Feliz Dia Depois O Dia Dos Pais! 

So this past week has been good. The past couple weeks I have been all over the place emotionally. Up, down... everywhere, but, I am feeling back to normal hallelujah! Brasil didnt celebrate fathers day yesterday, but we did have a holiday and a soccer match which is basically a holiday here. Tuesday was Valentines Day and a lot of stores were decorated and there was a little more PDA in the streets than normal, but aside from that I think it was a fairly normal day. The soccer match- I actually think there were two here in Brasil this week, but one was in Fortaleza so it wasnt as big of an event. On Saturday Brasil played Japan here in the huge new stadium that they built here in Brasilia. The streets were basically empty during the game. I can proudly announce that Brasil won 3-0 a fact I know mainly because everyone we talked to after gave us play by plays. ha ha. 

We had some other significant events this week. Our first district meeting of the transfer was on Tuesday. We have a very unique district. We have 2 Brazillians, 2 North Americans, and 2 Bolivians. I dont think that the odds of that happening are very high but it happened here. Based on the second Bolivian missionary I have met here on the mission I think that my companion is a very normal Bolivian. ha. =) They also brought mail to the district meeting finally so I got some long awaited letters which made me pretty happy. 

Later in the week we had a zone conference and President and Sister Gaertner came and participated. It was really good. Sister Gaertner didnt realize that Sister Victorio and I are serving together again and she asked President about it and it sounds like the possibility of receiving another sister here in the mission before the transfer is over is pretty likely. It sounds like a trio could be in my future. During the conference President had a set of missionaries do a teaching practice in front of everyone. The elders had described two investigators that they have a girl and her grandma and president told them to practice inviting them to be baptized. One of the elders asked who they should use to be the investigators and and President said they could choose anyone. Logically, I think sister V and I would have been the most likely to be chosen to be the girl and the grandma since we are now the only sisters in the zone, but they surprisingly said that president and sister G could be the investigators. Sister G was the girl and President G was Luiza the grandma. It was funny to me. Especially listening to the elders call him senhora. 

In the zone conference President G also talked a little bit about some of the things we should be doing... like exercising and such. The rule for waking up in the mission is that we need to wake up at 630. What happens a lot is people wake up at 630 and then kneel on their beds and pray... and then half an hour later at 7 ish they wake up. ha ha. Needless to say the new rule is we have to be out of bed at 630. While at the zone conference we got to see another zone that is close to ours which was cool. Some of my old district from the CTM were there.  

In other news things in terms of missionary work is going good here. We are super busy because we now have the investigators that I had been teaching and the investigators that Sister V had been teaching to visit which is actually kind of a lot of work to keep up on. We have had some good moments though. Mira a girl sister Coombs and I had been teaching has been reading the BOM like crazy she is already in 2 Nefi which I was excited about. And Renan who got baptized a few weeks ago finally decided he would were a white shirt and tye to church. Made my Sunday. Speaking of Sunday... Funny story. 

So in the past I dont know if anyone remembers- but I had a terrible filling up all the time when I gave talks in church. So this Sunday Sister V and I both gave talks and I talked for 15 minutes.... What?! I think that is a record for my longest talk. 

Everything in general is going good. I am washing a lot of dishes and teaching people the gospel and speaking Portuguese and walking a ton and staying happy. I hope that you all are doing good and that Summertime at home is going well too. I love you all! 

Sister Hoopes
PS If anyone has good FHE activity ideas or fun little games you should send them my way!!!! 

Monday, June 10, 2013

Week 30


Hi guys. So I am going give you all a really quick update. This week has been really great. Really busy but great. We had a zone conference that went really well and my companion and I got back on track with the work and everything and really had a great week. I also went on two exchanges this week. I spent one day exchanging here in our area and served with Sister Victorio and visited her investigators. I did another exchange and went ot Asa Norte which was really an eye opener. The work their is a lot harder than it is here in Ceilandia. There are a lot of people there, but a lot are rich or dont live there and are just there during the day to work. It was good though. Yesterday a black cat crossed my path twice. Bad luck right? and Bad luck it was.... I gave the lesson in the Principles of the Gospel class today and lets just say it wasnt the best teaching moment of my life. It was a little rough, but we all survived. But I said the black cat crossed twice right? So the other piece of bad luck? We had transfers today. Our mission had 7 areas shut because we had a large group end their missions and we didnt receive anyone new. Anyone. One of the areas they shut was mine. So now we have one set of sisters in Ceilandia. Luckily I am staying here though. I will be serving with... Sister Victorio. Again... ha ha. Sister Coombs and Sister Melo both got transferred to other areas... So we shall see what the future holds. So right now we have a ton of work to do because we now have are going to be doing the work of both areas. Things in general are going well and I am excited for some baptisms we have on the horizon. I will give you all an update on that next week. Thanks for all the prayers and support. I love you all!

Sister Hoopes

PS I have to give another talk next week and teach the principles of the gospel class again next week, so you all can pray for me that I can do a good job!

Monday, June 3, 2013

Week 29

Tchau May and Hello June! 

So the rain has returned this week again in Brazil. It has rained pretty much the entire week and right now I am actually cold. I am wearing tights and a sweater... so that is really saying something. I dont have a ton of time to write, but I will try to give a quick update. 

1. I found out this week that one of the people we were teaching in Guara got baptized. He is the grandson of a member we had helped bring back to church. I was really excited to hear that and a little sad that I dont get to be there. 

2. Last Monday we (sister coombs and I) were feeling a bit homesick because it was memorial day and everyone we knew was camping and such. Sister Coombs resolved her sadness by putting hydrogen peroxide in her hair to make it more blonde. I dont think it worked. 

3. Next week I have to teach the gospel principles class by myself, so you all are more than welcome to pray for me because I need all the help I can get. 

4. Next week is transfers so I will be getting a new companion and possible a new area, so stay tuned for that. 

5. The only really funny of the story this week is that we were teaching a mom of one of the members here (she is going to get baptized her in a week or two!) and then a pastor showed up.... he did bible bash a little, but he really is interested in finding out what the BOM is. So I gave him a BOM... (he said something about how in Revelations it says that we cant add to the word... we explained that) but I still left him with something to read in the BOM 2 Ne 29... ´´a bible, a bible...´´ read it and maybe you all will think it was as funny as i did. Sister coombs did not fully appreciate it I dont think. 

Whelp this is all for now. Love you all! 

Sister Hoopes

PS I hope you enjoy the classy mirror that they are using on their car... seeing stuff like that is pretty common here. 

Monday, May 27, 2013

Week 28

Happy Memorial Day Weekend! 

It sounds like you all are out doing fun stuff for Memorial Day. Unfortunately, they arent celebrating here. Obviously right? But, hey maybe I will find some BBQ to eat in remembrance of you all having a good time! So I am going to probably make this a quick update for you all so sorry if it is lacking in quality.  

First....last pday... We had some serious drama in our house. Sister Victorio and Sister Melo were not on good terms at all. They both were angry and upset at each other. Sister Coombs and I had to each talk to them to try to help them clear up their differences. It didnt work out too well... the next day they had emergency interviews with President Gaertner. He has magical powers... or the spirit of God on his side, because they came back from the interviews and are now liking each other alright and are willing to finish this transfer together. I am mostly glad that things are super tense anymore. 

This last week was Alicia´s birthday! Happy Belated Birthday! I bought you spandex as a present. I ended up getting myself some spandex too. They are terrible. But funny. 

This week we didnt get a ton of work done because we spent a day in our house because Sister Coombs got sick. I didnt spend this time super well. I just sat and stared at the wall for a while and I looked down at my watch and 2 hours had passed. I dont know how it happened. We came home early another day because we ate chicken hearts that we bought on the road that didnt end up sitting well with either of us. Bad idea. No more chicken hearts on the road. I did end up finishing the BOM for the 2nd time in Portuguese. We spent 2 other days with our zone doing practices... ALL day long. It was awfully long. We will be doing practices again like that tomorrow. So pray I dont lose my mind.  

Yesterday at church Sister Coombs and I had to teach the gospel doctrine class on the spot. It was on repentance. It actually went way easier and smoothly than I ever imagined. The funny thing was that we had gotten a couple who have fallen away from the church to come back and yesterday was their first Sunday and they got a hardcore lesson on repentance. Another funny thing about yesterday... we saw a ton of people riding horses down the road which is unusual... and this woman barely hit a branch on the side of the road and PLOP she fell of her horse. We probably should have gone to help her, but I think she was drunk and Sister Coombs and I were trying to hard not to laugh. Luckily there was a man behind her that helped her out so it all worked out in the end. 

Okay so this is my news for this week. Not super detailed, but it happens. The work is still going along here. Unfortunately for us Amelia, our investigator is moving to Taguatinga Sul, so unless I get transferred there it looks like I wont be seeing her baptism. But, thats all right. I love you all and hope you all had a great holiday weekend and an even better week after and that you all send me letters because I like them a lot. =) 

Sister Hoopes

Monday, May 20, 2013

Week 27

Hello Family, 


This week has been long and good and bad and sad, but all in all it´s been alright. I will again try doing a bullet point list and see how that works out. 


1. Dogs. So dogs here are not very scary, most of them are little and dont do much of anything. Proof of this is the Dead Dog Road picture that I sent. They just lay there and do nothing a lot. So the other night we went to a house to find a member who we have never met before that was on a list that the bishop asked us to visit. We got to the gate I clapped and they had a dog laying in front of their house. It didnt bark or anything it just got up and walked behind a car. I didnt think much of it. A woman came out the door and started talking to us so I stepped closer to hear her better and BOOM the dog jumped out of nowhere and nearly bit me. More accurately I think he nearly killed me. It scared me to death... almost. I screamed, the woman laughed and I survived. Hallelujah. 


2. Choir. This weekend was stake conference for the folks here in Ceilândia and our stake president asked all the missionaries in the stake to sing during the conference. The funny thing is that we dont have very many singers in our zone. What made it even funnier is that we dont have very many Brazillians in our zone either. We have a bunch of North Americans, Bolivians, Argentinians, Mexicans... and maybe 5 Brazillians. Ha ha. But we got together, we practiced and we wound up singing in the middle of the stake presidents talk. It turned out alright I think, at least I think they appreciated our effort. 


3. Other good news that come with meeting together as a zone. I got more letters this week!!!!! AND I got a package from Mary with notes from people at the candy counter/bookstore. It made me quite quite happy. I ate all the candy already because I couldnt control myself. Turned a long day into a very very good day. 


4. Family of Mateus Zita and their 3 sons. So the bishop asked us to visit some inactive members of the ward and on the list was Mateus and Zita. We got to their house right when Mateus got home from work. He works with the police in Brasilia. So we bounded over his occupation and the fact that it is in the same line of work that dad has. He is actually really awesome and really wanting to come back to church, so he will next week. They have 3 sons Washington, Romario, and Rafael... I think that they might be the most beautiful Brazillian family that I have ever seen in my life. That is the truth. We are going to get them all back to church mainly so we can take pictures with them for when they become famous. 


5. Amelia. Amelia is an investigator that we have been teaching for a while now. Her baptism was planned for this past Sunday. Aka yesterday. She was all ready to go. She passed the interview for baptism on the condition that she wouldnt drink coffee at all. This was hard for her. And hard for us. Its the weirdest thing, as a missionary it feels like all of the problems that other people have suddenly become my problem. Even though in reality they arent. We spent hours this week helping her, talking to her, reminding her not to drink coffee. Mentally and physically it was kind of draining. She made it all the way to Sunday morning and she called us and sad that she had had a terrible headache and had to drink coffee at 4 am. So she drank coffee and she didnt get baptized this week. It was really a disappointment. We are trying to help her so she can get baptized still, but she pretty much is certain that she cant quit coffee. So that is my number one struggle for this coming week. Her and Sebastian. His baptism is planned for this coming Sunday and he needs to quit drinking alcohol. 


6. Alan... We were walking down the road the other day, Amelia called and asked us to go talk to her, so we turned down the first street we came to and we ran into this man named Alan. He stopped us and started talking to us in English. He stopped us by saying HEY you guys are American Mormon missionaries! We talked to him and he was not in good shape. He lived in the US California growing up for 24 years and has been back in Brazil for the last 13. His life he said isnt going good and he told us that he was about to go do something stupid. We kept him talking so we could figure out how to help him. As it turns out he had and LDS friend growing up and he went to seminary with him and played football with him. His name is Chad Ram or something like that. I guess he played football at BYU but i dont remember that name. Anyway we tried to get his address, but he said that he lived in Guara II with his mom. Suddenly I remembered i woman that I talked to in an apartment builind in Gurara. I asked him if his mom was this woman that I remembered and she was. It was the craziest coincidence. He was really stunned that I knew his mom and had her phone number. We ended up leaving and he still wouldnt tell us the stupid thing he was about to do, but we gave him a Book of Mormon and a pamphlet with our phone number on it. Later that night he called us and said he went home and that he didnt end up doing the stupid thing and that he is going to read the Book of Mormon. That was a pretty awesome and miraculous experience. 


Okay, well this ought to do it for now. My week wasnt that bad it was actually more good than bad. I am still doing good. The weather is hot, the wind blows a lot, it doesnt rain anymore and I am permanently red because of the sun. I miss you all and I hope that you are all praying for President Monson. LOVE YOU ALL A TON! 


Sister Hoopes

Monday, May 6, 2013

Week 25


Hi family. Things here are going pretty good this week. Actually the start of this week was incredibly and rough for me. But things got better in a real hurry. Sister Coombs gave me an idea of how I could write better letters home by making a bullet list so I will give that a shot. 

~The first part of the week was long. Why? That I dont know. I think lots of things played a part in that. It was a little bit of a rough switch with Sister Victorio moving into the house and Sister Damaceno leaving. We got Sister Victorio introduced to some of the people in the ward and reorganized things in the house and the week got better. It definitely is a lot quieter though.  

~ Churrasco. My week started going uphill Tuesday at lunch. I think I have expressed my love for churrasco already... but I will just one more time so you guys remember. I really love churrasco... (bbq) We stop and buy it on the road sometimes which makes us both pretty content with life. But, Tuesday we went to lunch and the members made us churrasco and it was wonderful. We all ate way way way too much. It was delicious though. 

~The mission kind of messes up your  body a little bit I think. Physically I am doing pretty well still, but Sister Coombs is starting to have some troubles. One of which is her knee. One of her knees is like permanently swollen. I tried to wrap it for her, but it turns out I dont remember how to wrap knees good at all. I think I will have to literally re-start school when I get back because everythings has left my mind that I learned. I am just praying that learning it the second time will be easier than it was the first time. 

~We experienced a miracle this week. One of our investigators, Renan decided to get baptized. So this coming Sunday (Mother´s Day aka Day I get to call home) we will have a baptism for him. I am really excited for him and its going to a good day. I am sure I will tell you all about it face to face via skype. =) 

Okay this list thing is going a little rough... I will think. Things here are good though. I am happy and healthy. We are working a lot and I really really love the people that I am getting to know here. AND... I am really excited to call home next week. So this is all for now LOVE you all a ton,  

Sister Hoopes