Monday, June 24, 2013

Methinks Thou Dost Protest Too Much

Down with the government! We want a better life! Bus prices are too high!  Oh wait, sorry... Forgot I wasn't still in the protest.

Just kidding! I don´t know how many of you are aware of the rampant protests happening here in Brazil, but I figure it´s important to inform you all that I have not been affected. Pedro Leopoldo, fortunately, is pretty chill. Nothing like the war zones in the big cities. So please don´t worry!  Getting on with life, because I don´t have a whole ton of time to write. Had a bunch of awesome news and such from family members and friends, so they ate up the time of the rest of you beloved people.

1) Tremors or I´m Going to Change- Let me tell you all about the miracle story of Fabiano. It all began soon after I arrived on the mission. Elder Wilson and I encountered him in the street at various times. He is a little crazy. He is convinced he can predict natural disasters and murders based on his physical health (how much he´s trembling) and attitude. So he always used to pass by us and inform us of his most recent correct prediction. We always just nodded and smiled and then went on with life, laughing a little at the interesting people you meet on the mission.

Then, last week, he appeared in the church. I was extremely surprised, but didn´t expect much more to come of it. We visited him at his house, as we do all of the investigators who come to church. We listened to his ranting, he informed us that he couldn´t stop smoking, and so we taught a quick first lesson. He understood perfectly (he´s very intelligent), but didn't accept baptism immediately. He said he´d think about it.

A couple days later, we called him and asked about baptism. He said he´d be baptized on Sunday! We visited his house that night and taught all of the commandments. He agreed to live all of them, including the necessity to stop smoking. As we prepared to leave, he was amazingly excited. He had a huge smile on his face and said, contently, in English "I'm going to change!"

From that day forward, he stopped smoking cold turkey. He really has a desire to change, a clear example of repentance to me. And this last Sunday, he was baptized for the remission of sins.  Everyone was rather surprised-everyone here in the city knows him because he´s always on the streets, and was famous in his youth for his drug habits (that permanently affected his brain.) He´s clean now, 39 years old, but still has quite the reputation. It shows that the Lord´s arms of mercy are extended to everyone. And I know that this man really has accepted the gospel principles.

Annnnd that´s the only story I have time for. Sorry, folks. I wanted to send out a quick congrats to Tanner Gill for his mission call to Ukraine. I have no doubt that he´s going to be an incredibly powerful missionary, and I´m just sorry not to have him down here in Brazil. I guess we don´t get to claim all of the best missionaries in the world :)

I was also happy to receive some news about my good friends Alivia, Devin, and Chris who are off in other parts of the world. They are amazing children of God who are doing a great work.

Until next week, folks! I am so proud of all of you who have decided to serve missions, and to everyone who is following the Lord. This work is true. I know it is. I know it.
Stay strong, people. Do the good work, and never forget to follow your hearts!

Much Love,

Elder Alex Burt

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