week 45 . emergency transfer . on the bright side i'm sleeping like a queen

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There was an emergency transfer this week. [mom note: a regular transfer is when a missionary moves to a new area or gets a new companion and it happens every 6 weeks. An emergency transfer is a transfer that happens on a day/week that is not the regular transfer day/week because of an "emergency". An emergency can be anything...a new missionary coming to the mission, a missionary leaving the mission for varied reasons like health issues, an area needing to close, etc.]  On Monday night the Elders had Sister Morais, Sister Porter, Sister Antunes, and I all meet up with them in front of our house. And they told us that Sister Porter and Sister Antunes were transferred to other areas. And the area would close. So now it's just Sister Morais and I in the house. It's weirdly quiet and feels too big for us. The first night we were both way sad without the sisters and ate a lot of comfort food. We're starting to get more used to it, but it's still weird. Sister Porter and Sister Antunes are wonderful missionaries and I will miss them so much. (also I'm feeling guilty because all three times I've lived with Sister Porter she was transferred in an emergency transfer haha). The only plus side is that now I have a mattress. The last 2 1/2 transfers I've been sleeping on the mattress box and it was starting to take it's toll on me haha. But I grabbed one of the sister's mattresses and now I'm sleeping like a queen. 

This week we were working hard the entire week to follow-up with everyone and to make sure that we would have people at church. We had so many people who were definitely going to go. It was going to be a perfect Sunday and next Sunday we would've had a bunch of baptisms! 

But . . . as always in missionary work. Things don't usually turn out how we think that they will. Nobody who we had planned for went to church. Not one. And it was rough going. People didn't want to go because they wanted to sleep, because their moms wouldn't let them go to church (messed up parenting right there), because they went to the "citio" (like a ranch. . don't even mention the word citio to missionaries in Caicó it's basically a curse word because it's the main reason that baptisms fall through), and a million other excuses. We got to church and I was really down. Everything was going perfectly and then out of nowhere it all went downhill. But during sacrament meeting I felt an inexplicable comfort. I don't know how everything will work out just yet, but I know there is a purpose and that we will be able to find people to help and to baptize. 

This week was basically the week of unexpected turns of events . . . to name a few :

+ emergency transfer :: see above

+ Francisco pequeno :: Our little primary age Francisco was going to church every week and preparing for baptism. But out of nowhere we found out that him and his mom will be moving to Sousa. (It's in a different state and area in our mission). His mom is really happy because she'll be closer to her family, which is great. But we're bummed that he'll be leaving. We're just not sure when so it's possible that he could still be baptized here. We'll have to see because he didn't go to church this week. Why, you ask? Because at 7 a.m. he got nervous that we hadn't gone to pick him up for 9 o'clock church and said that we weren't ever going to pick him up and left. Kids, kids, kids. 

+ Francisco velho :: A man who stopped us last week and accepted baptism (and thinks I'm from England) changed completely. He gave us free ice-cream and calls me Julia (don't know why he thinks that's my name) #minhavida hahahaha But then out of nowhere he decided that some other church is the only true church. And he said that if the other church isn't true he wants to turn into a giant snake. Creative right? And we asked him what he would say if Jesus Christ told him that another church was true. He wouldn't believe it. If people don't believe in what Christ says, how are they going to believe us? We thanked him for the ice cream and peaced out. 

But in spite of all these not-so-great things happening, I can honestly say that I'm happy. I know that I'm supposed to be here. I know we have people that we're teaching who need our help and who will change! And I love my companion, and the members, and the area, and all the missionaries here. We can't control the free agency of others, but we can control how hard we work and our attitude. We're working hard and we're working with smiles on our faces. 

And it's not too hard to work with smiles because my life is still a joke. 
+ My name is now Julia. ^^^^

+ Yesterday my legs were killing me (lots of walking on Sundays) so we sat to rest and I put my head on Sister Morais' shoulder and fell asleep. I think it took about 30 seconds for me to sleep haha. And then a woman appears out of nowhere and said hi and scared the living daylights out of me. I jumped up and then she said that her neighbor had sent her to talk to us to see if we wanted to rest there haha. (her neighbor is actually a woman that we know haha). No more sitting on benches allowed for me because if I sit down it looks like I don't get up.

+ We tried doing a contact and the man would not even look at us. We invited him to church, he shook his head. Offered him a pamphlet, shook his head. Said good afternoon, ignored us. Didn't know that the mission had been that bad for my looks, guess I'll start doing something different with my hair and using makeup haha. 

+ One girl who was going to go to church with us was sleeping in a hammock right by her front door, with the door open. We were clapping (it's how you knock here) and yelling her name and she just kept on sleeping. So Sister Morais looks at me, shrugs her shoulders and grabs the girl's hammock and starts pulling and shaking it to wake her up hahaha. My companion might be the most persistent missionary on the mission. 

Well, looking back on this email I realize that it looks slightly depressing, but against all odds it was a great week. We ate lots of cake and laughed a lot and I'm loving my mission with all my heart. The church is true people. 

Have a wonderful week!
Amo vocês!

Sister M. Baker

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