Monday, November 14, 2011

November 14, 2011

 The Parrots. They are green by the way. Pretty chic!
 PB&J!   OPA!

Horses?  O Que?  That's weird, they are in the middle of the city,
and one even walked across the street of cars.

Another week passes in our lives. Wow. Weird. Anyway, at 11/11/11 11:11 I made a wish. Ha. It was pretty exciting. The zoo is not in my area, or even zone, but several missionaries from all four zones in the city were going. Its rare to be able to go since the zoo is closed on Mondays normally. They had a bear there, but sadly it has died, really recently in fact. Also, though he wont be able to read for quite some time, HAPPY BIRTHDAY LAINE! Someone tell him for me please. Ha. So Maria is the mother of two young boys, and also Andresa, almost 16, and Bianca, 13 years old, and is separated from her husband. They seem to be excellent investigators and are accepting all our compromissios. They are really excited for the baptism. They are a great family and really nice to us. They really seem ready to take this path. We are really hoping to make a difference in this area, and the Lord has really been blessing us. We also have been having pancakes a lot now, which is really good with Mrs Butterworth by the way, thanks, and also I made PB and J's the other day too. I'm afraid with all this cooking I might get fatter again. Ha. I'm working on turning my stomach (have you ever thought its weird that the organ stomach, and the "outside" stomach have the same name? In Portuguese its different) stronger, or should I just say, losing my stomach. At least the heat and sweating helps eh? Ha. Its been pretty hot here, hitting around 90 degrees with humidity. I really feel bad for Elder Howell, and all the Elders in the Nordeste area of Brasil, they have got to be suffering. The mission is going great, and I'm loving my opportunity to be out here serving the Lord. This week, my companion keeps saying that I am really humble, and I have to disagree with him and say that he's crazy, because I know that I have a lot to work on, including humility. So, I remembered a scripture in Alma 26:12, when Ammon glories in God. If Ammon, one of my favorite Hero's (Tanner Johns, my converter- BOTR) is nothing, then what am I? When we glory, we need to give the glory to God. Truly every accomplishment is from God. With God we can do anything, and it is only by and through God, that we can do these things. Truly we are nothing without God, but as in Doctrine and Covenants, every soul is valuable in the eyes of God. We have an opportunity to be mighty in God, but truly, we need to give him the honor. Our Lord and Savior lives and he wants us to be happy. He suffered for all the sins and pains of the world, are we greater than Him? He loves us, and allows us to do many great miracles, but truly, "Glory to God in the Highest." I love you all, and am thankful for your love and support. Always stay strong, remembering to always be an example through humility and service.


Elder Tanner Ross Paxman

November 9, 2011

 Minha Zona passada!
 Elder M. Santos and "Eu". Sweet background eh?
Wow, I'm loved.  That's without a doubt.

First of all, sorry for not giving a warning, but we weren't given one either. Ha. Our P-Day was changed this week due to having a mission wide conference with Elder Godoy and Elder Evans both from the seventy. It was an amazing conference. Really well. So, I wash my laundry in a "tunquina," a machine that basically stirs the water around with your clothes. It at least works, then we hang everything out to dry, which happens really fast here sometimes. We had three investigators at church the other day, who are all working to get baptised. It was a young girl that was ready to be baptised, but was attending the wrong ward. She switched back, and now her Mom and Sister also want to be baptised. Her name is Bianca, her Mom is Maria, and the sister is Andresa. I don't know if those are all spelled right. We also had an inactive that we have been visiting come to church which was good to see. Were trying to make our visits more spiritual with her now. So, I got three packages, two from the parents, and one from the Grandma, so I know that I am without a doubt loved. Ha. Thanks. As for advice for the youth preparing for missions, I would suggest getting in a habit of daily study, even if its just a little bit every day. Also, prepare themselves in every way, and cherish the time with their families. Never stop to expand your knowledge. Preach my Gospel is definitely a great source to study. So, my new companion, Elder M. Santos is a recent convert from about 6 Hours from here in a small town that is still in the state of São Paulo. He is 25 years old, and is really nice. He's weird, but who isn't. Ha. Things are going well, he truly is super nice, and talks good of me to everyone else. Ha. He knows how to cook to, which is pretty nice. Ha. So, the other day I was walking, and I saw some parrots in a tree that is in our area. They were startled, and about 20 of them went flying out. That was cool. What was even cooler, was the Zoo in Brazil! Yay. It was super sweet, and the awesome part is its only 3 Reis to enter. Awesomeness eh? Its not as big as our zoo there, but its got lions, Elephants, Tigers, and monkeys. It was a lot of fun. Sadly my camera died, and shortly after, my companions died. Ha. Dang. There were tons of Parrots there too. And crazy birds all over. So during the mission conference, they talked about the importance of tithing and how it is one of the greatest factors that keep people active in the church. Truly the blessings are real and many. So the scripture is Malaki 3:10. I love you all. Good week.


Elder Tanner Ross Paxman

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

October 31, 2011

 Hot dogs.  So cheap and so good.
 grandma's package
 Meu Rede!  My hammock!
 Told you Robert was famous.  His initials are all over the place here. 
 Rain.  And Glasses.  Good times. 
 Package from my parents.  Holy cow! Heaven in a box... well almost.
 Sorocaba.  Boom Baby!
Open Space :)

Holy cow, I don't believe, I truly don't believe it, but its true. This transfer ends this Wednesday with another week gone by. Time is crazy. First of all, its really weird that Brady is home helping grandma. It seems like yesterday we were all out there, but at the same time a long time ago. It's gotta be weird for Brady too, and weird that Im on a mission. As for the weather, yeah, its getting into the hotter season. Conference weekend was 95 degrees F, or about 35 degrees C. And December is the hottest month here. Who boy, well see how this goes. Ha. Luckily its not horrible horrible. Also, HAPPY BIRTHDAY ROBERT! Yay! So this week was just another average week in the life of a missionary. Not much happened that was exciting. We had interviews with President Martins, and he is a very intelligent man. I asked him a question about my debit card, and he even was able to tell me a little of the History of my bank. He knows a lot. I was his companheiro when he interviewed the Sisters and sat out in the hall. He also is very funny too. I think its funny that Drunks seem to have a thing with missionaries. One called us over and started murmuring and making noises with random words in english, and I think he thought he was speaking fluent english with us. It was hilarious. My companion said we don't understand in Portuguese, but he just kept going. Also another day, we were walking and passed two drunks, and one started calling us names and stuff, and the other argued and said (in Portuguese) "No, these are angels here on the Earth" and he came and shook our hand, and argued with the other. Oh drunks. Ha. So I found out that I will stay here for the next transfer, and my new companion will be another missionary that I know from my first zone that is the same group of time as Elder Neto. My new companion will be Elder M. Santos. So I was looking at some scriptures, and I really wanted to share this one with you all. Its 2 Nephi 1:23. We all need to wake up, and to shake off our sins. We should put on the Amour of God, and stand for righteousness. We need to not just protect ourselves, but to come out of obscurity. We cant just hide from our enemy. When we "hide" our testimony, or what he already have, we will lose it. You cannot gain more from hiding. We need to stand up for what we believe in and not "be ashamed of the Gospel of Christ." When people become members of the church it is for a lifetime, not just for a little bit, or only sundays. We are to stand for what is right at every moment, because that is our call as a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and followers of Christ. I love you all and wish you all a great week.
Elder Tanner Ross Paxman
-Unusual names for Babies eh? I think ill leave that up to my sisters, I have unusual names too, but I don't want them stolen. Ha.

October 24, 2011

First of all, no pictures last week, because my adapter broke, and is still broken. "Que freak," Eh? Ill work on that, because I hate not sending pictures, I have plenty to send. Otherwise, things are going good here in Brazil. There are two other Americans in my Zone, and one Brazilian that speaks really good english, but aside from that, the others know some words and phrases. They do have a primary program here, but I don't know much about it. Childrens Day is similar to mothers day, or fathers day, but its for the children. Good holiday eh? And the talent show went well, I enjoyed it and had a good time. One of the Sisters sang a song, but the rest of us missionaries just watched. We have festivals here, like the one we had in July, but it is a Brazilian holiday. I hear that Halloween really isn't celebrated here, so well see. But yes, I remember being Oscar. Ha. Good times. I don't know when I can go to the temple next, the Elders out here don't get to go, so I have to wait till I'm transferred. We are about 2 hours from the Temple and the Mission office. I bought myself a Hammock, or a "Rede" for Christmas and my Birhtday. Ha. Its really sweet. Ill send photos when I can. We had one investigator come to the talent show, but she left before it started when some of the youth left too. We haven't been to a council meeting yet, the Bispo just changed, and well see when the next one is, I'm sure well go. And I'm pretty sure that our ward has temple groups that go every once and a while. It might be once a month, I'm not sure. So, I had no Idea that Robert was so famous here. He did almost all the art in the town, craziness. Ill send a photo when I can to show what I mean. Ha. This week, I was almost bitten by a dog, but my companion chased it off with an umbrella. Also, a dog followed Elder Lopez and I for a really long time. It came to the church, and waited outside during our meeting. We went and took some food and gave it to it a ways away from the church and ran back, but right when we were about back to the church here comes this dog, and its super skinny too. It didn't leave us until we went into a store. It really liked Elder Lopez, who I had another division with him and that went well. As for David, he didn't make it to church again, so we talked to him, and he still wants to, he just wasn't at home, and was off somewhere Saturday night and didn't get back until Sunday afternoon. We don't think he'll be baptised this week, but we'll work with him. Anderson didn't come to church, but we did teach his Mom too, which went well. We've got to keep visiting them. I was reading a scripture in my study this week, that stood out to me. Its Mosiah 4:11-12. We as humans, are nothing. Everyone of us is great in the eyes of God, but we truly are nothing in comparison to him. God created us, and loves us so much. We should pray and talk to God everyday. He is our Father in Heaven. When we pray to him everyday, and do our best to follow Him and what He asks of us, we will have joy and blessings. The happiest and person is one that is keeping the commandments of God. Every rule is given to protect us. I love you all, and hope that we all strive to have the best relationship we can with our Father in Heaven.
Elder Tanner Ross Paxman