week 48 . transfer week // zion or bust

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TRANSFER WEEK! I'm pretty sure you all know that I was transferred because of Facebook [mom note: a sweet church member posted a picture of Megan arriving to the new area]  but I'm going to pretend you don't know and have a party in this email because I was transferred to. . .  

(aka Zion)

When we were listening to the transfer call I couldn't handle how excited I was. I think I went into shock. I loved the last three transfers that I spent in Caicó.  I love the missionaries and members and converts and investigators there. But the work was hard. I was praying and praying for an area that we could help more people, where people would have open hearts to accept our message. And God sent me to Mossoró. My dream come true. 

I'm back in my "birthplace" haha. [mom note: The area where she started her mission] This time I'm in the Abolição Ward and I'm so excited. Sisters Porter, Francis, Dyer, and a few other friends already worked in this ward and I've only heard good things. It's easy to see why. The members here are fantastic. They are so proactive about integration of investigators with the members and it's obvious that they are truly interested in missionary work. Jailton, my old ward mission leader in Urick Graff moved and is the Young Men's president here! Good to see a familiar face (even if he does remember when I could barely say one sentence in Portuguese). And yesterday we had a meeting with our ward mission leader here, Felipe, and his wife made some killer hot chocolate. I'm on cloud nine here. 

Other transfer news  ::
+ Sister Morais stayed in Seridó. I miss her. It was a hard goodbye after spending so much time together and growing to know and love each other. But she is now the senior companion and I know she will take great care of things there with our investigators. I talked to her yesterday and it sounds like there are already great things happening with investigators that we had. 

+ Elder W. Silva was also transferred to . . . Mossoró hahaha. We're not in the same district anymore, but he will continue as my Zone Leader (with Elder Tavares). He's a great leader and friend and I'm excited to keep working with him. 

+ Sister Carvalho is my Sister Training Leader and she's working in Urick Graff 1 (my old area). Pumped on life. 

Sister Rios, Elder W Silva and Megan
Now onto my new life in Mossoró. My companion is. . . 

SISTER TRAGE (trah-jee)
about her  ::
+ She's gaucha. [from Rio Grande do Sul] (same state as Sister Carvalho). 

+ This is her third transfer on the mission. I'm her second companion. I was worried that she would not like me on sight for replacing her "mom," but no such thing happened, we get along great.

+ She studied and worked in the psychology field and I'm whipping out all of my senior year AP psych facts and we have some fun nerd conversations. 

+ I think she was born as a missionary because she's perfect. It's like Preach My Gospel [mom note: a missionary teaching and training guide] threw up on her. I'm learning more with her than she is with me. She's a wonderful and captivating teacher and she's organized and decisive and confident and I'm so lucky to have such a wonderful and prepared companion. 

+ She's sweet and she's funny and has a strong testimony of the gospel and I love her already. 

We live in a house (not an apartment for the first time) that's got a few ants, cockroaches, spiders, etc. (and cats in the ceiling haha). But other than the critters it's a great house. We live with Sister Lencini (also gaucha) and Sister Savage (greenie from Las Vegas. Mom, I think you've already talked to her haha) [mom note: Sister Savage reached out to me on Facebook with questions about the mission before she left] They're wonderful! They are motiviating me to be better about working out too, we go running every morning (Shan, I always think of you haha). Maybe in the future I'll be able to run more than two laps without wanting to die haha.

Sister Trage and Megan
Megan's new district - Sister Lencini, Megan, Sister Trage, Sister Savage and the elders
Now if my life wasn't good enough just because of the transfers and my comp and everything...we had seven people at church AND we had a BAPTISM this week. Her name is Leni. Sister Trage saw her get mugged when they were running one morning last week and after helping her and making sure she was alright got her info and went to teach her. We went and taught her the day after I got here and she's perfect. She's a teacher in an elementary school and she is so nice and friendly and so in tune with the spirit. She told us how she felt when she prayed about the church and said it was a wonderful, happy feeling that was hard to describe. As we explained that the Spirit was confirming the truth of these things she agreed and said she knew that this was right. She had been nervous about the idea of baptism but knew that God had answered her prayers and chose faith over fear. When we taught her about the Word of Wisdom she told us that she drinks coffee, but is more than willing to stop drinking it in order to keep a commandment of the Lord. I LOVE HER. Yesterday she went to church by herself (normally we pass by everyone's house to get them for church) and participated in the Sunday School classes. And last night she was baptized! The baptismal meeting was beautiful and spiritual. A young man/recent-convert from the ward baptized her and special testimonies were born and I was so happy and it was clear to see that she was as well. And she's already preparing herself to be able to go visit the temple in Recife next month!!! I know that Leni will be a powerful member of the church here and I consider myself honored to be able to teach her.

Megan, Leni and Sister Trage

+ Sister Trage and I made a cake (tried to at least) for Leni's baptism. The cake itself turned out fine, even if it wasn't as fluffy and light as it should have been. haha. But we tried to make a "frosting" type thing for the top of the cake with a recipe that was on the package. We were missing a few ingredients but we decided to wing it. Worst idea ever haha. We ended up with a mixture that tasted mostly like sugary butter and ended up (almost) working out as pancake batter. Hahaha but my companion and I had some good bonding time and a lot of laughs as we tried literally everything to make it taste better (blending, boiling, putting in a million different ingredients). We ended up just making chocolate sauce to pour over it so it all worked out haha. 

+ We are teaching a man who has a drinking problem. And when he's been drinking he's extremely emotional and cries a lot and stops people in the street to tell them that he's going to be a "believer" with us hahaha. And yesterday he patted my hair as if I were a cat and said "my American" and then started crying and asking for forgiveness for doing it. He's a character. But he really does want to change so we're going to help him!

Once again I LOVE MY LIFE. 

I know that God hears our prayers and wants our happiness. I am so very grateful for the chance I have to be here. I love Mossoró and all the people that I got to know here and I'm excited to get to know more. Here's to hoping I "die" (in mission terms, not in real life) here. Yes, I know it's a ways away but I'm down. 

Dad, have fun at Girl's Camp and sing "sippin' cider" for me, it's my fave ;) [mom note: I've included a creepy/strange/hilarious/weird video for those that have never heard this camp classic. Also for those wondering why in the world Derek would be going to a girls camp haha...his calling at church often gives him the opportunity to go to youth activities to spend time with the kids and to share his thoughts and testimony with them.]

Tell Andrea congrats from me and that I love her and and that I'm so excited!!! How long has she been dating him? What's his name? [mom note: Andrea is a family friend that has been like a sister to Megan and her siblings. She got engaged this past week]

Have a wonderful week!
I love you all!

Sister Baker

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