My name is Diana Martin and I am a not so secret agent for the Lord in beautiful Maceio, Brazil. I am serving as a missionary for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints for 18 months.

Monday, January 13, 2014

Que Vergonha (What a shame!)

Dear loving Family,

Who knew that Thanksgiving is this week and not last week? Not me until two days ago.  Oops. Well Happy Thanksgiving in Maine again! This week a family invited nos americanas to have a family home evening with them this Thursday so that we can make them an apple pie. They are saying that is for us but really they just want apple pie. I´m excited. 

Last week we went to a churrascaria! Sister Rezendes asked months ago if I had gone to one but last pday was the first time and it was amazing. You sit and people bring all different kinds of meat to your table. I also ate sushi. It was surprizingly good. I took an artsy photo and felt like I was dad at some business dinner in some foreign country. 

This week we worked. And I liked it. The only part that really stunk is the fact that almost of our investigators right now need to marry. In Brazil everyone just lives together. It is pretty rare outside of the church to find people that are legally married. Right now we are teaching about 7 women and each one of them needs to get married (or separate from the husbands but I don´t like that option. It is sad and not very family oriented). Well here in Brazil it costs money and takes about month to get married. We are working in a pretty poor area so money is tight. Also usually the women want to marry and the man no. But we are working. It is amazing to see people that are learning about Christ and God and wanting to live a life that is in harmony with Their teachings despite all the obstacles that are in the way. Jane is one of these women. She wants to be baptized but her husband is legally married to another woman. In this case they both actually want to marry but the divorce papers from his first marriage returned without her signing them. Complicated. But this Sunday she was there with her son, her "husband", and three step children. Dedication.

The atonement also struck home again this week. We were walking down the street when a recent convert of the sisters before us literally ran into us. He was as drunk as could be. It was devastating to see. He had slept in the street that night because even drunk he knows how sad he will make his mom. And he was miserable. We talked with him and convinced him to return to his house. He just kept saying that the body was weak and that he was missing that "sun " that was in his life when he was being taught daily by the other Sisters. The next day when he was sober we returned and read the story of Alma and how he repented. I don´t know if Flavio understood it all but reading how Alma went around trying to destroy the Church and killing people spiritually speaking to finding immense joy and relief through Christ struck me. Really through Christ we can be clean again. He wants to forgive us. He wants us to repent. There is never a point were we stop being important and loved by Christ and our Heavenly Father. Even the drunk recent convert is a loved son of God. 

I love you all and hope you can feel of God´s love for each one of you! 
Sister Martin   

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