Brazil Fortaleza East Mission

This blog will share my experiences for the next 2 years while on my mission for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints with the people of the Brazil Fortaleza East Mission.

I will start my mission with 6 weeks in the Sao Paulo Brazil Missionary Training Center (MTC), where I will learn to speak Portuguese and receive training on teaching the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

I am very privilaged to be able to do this, as it will be a great opportunity for me to grow as individual, all while bringing others to Christ. My mission is to share the restored Gospel of Jesus Christ to the people of Brazil, as well as serve them as Christ would serve them. I am very excited for this opportunity and hope to do my very best.

Elder Daynen Biggs

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

September 2015 in a New Area

4 September 2015

September in a New Area
Our area.  It is much smaller than my last area. 

This week was extremely long without much happening.  One of those weeks.  But, I will do my best.  So we had Mission Conference this week (my first mission conference of my mission.  President doesn’t invite the zones far from Fortaleza, he holds a separate conference for them) and it was super cool.  If I haven’t said it before, President Fusco is the man!  He is extremely direct and strict, but super funny at the same time.  He was explaining about how we missionaries need to close our hearts here on the mission, that we are not allowed to date or marry anyone from the mission.  That if we return to Fortaleza to marry a recent convert, member or sister, we'll be marrying the devil.  Kissing Satan.  That she'll be like the aliens from Alien, killing us and eating us afterwards!  He’s made his point very clear :)
Our baptism this week, Luciana
We had the opportunity to baptize a young woman thing week of 21 (who’s married to a guy of 45....).  And that’s all I really have to say about that.  She was already taught everything, we just kinda showed up to dip her in the water.

This week we also got to help build a house. Lots of people here just build their own houses.  So we got to help with that, it was pretty cool!

But I'm pretty slim on time this week, and that’s all that really went down.  But I love all you guys and will talk to you next week!

Elder Biggs
I'm living with these Elders, Elder Amaral and Elder Ramirez. 
 Elder Da Hora is the black one.  
This kid in the middle left on his mission this week.

The stadium INSIDE my area!
21 September 2015

I Got Hit in the Head

So this week passed by super fast.  I've gotten to know just about all the members, am super good friends with the Bishop (who is our neighbor) counselors, secretary (who is a marvel fan) and Quorum President, and a bunch of others.  Me and Elder Da Hora are improving in our companionship and we have 4 couples who have accepted baptism and we will marry.  Like 4 André and Wedja's!  (But André and Wedja are way better - just in case they're reading this)
This is our chapel!
And Inside.  Its honestly pretty annoying.  You cant hear anything inside. 
 But the ward will be moving to the stake center here in a bit, so that'll be good!

So on Thursday we brought in Recent Convert to the neighboring church building to play soccer with the Elders quorums in the stake. We watched for a bit (awesome!) and headed out.  They were actually playing Futsol, which is basically soccer on a basketball court.  So as we're walking out, I'm looking at the exit, walking, then: WHAM!!!  Soccerball LAUNCHED at the back of my head.  Immediately my body went completely limp and I fell on the ground, seeing tunnel vision.  But the second that I came to myself I jumped up (not wanting to look bad in front of all the men in the stake) and joked with them saying that it was just because I was Mormon.  They all thought that was pretty funny, and we took off. The rest of that night my head was hurting pretty bad (Da hora said that the ball was really cruisin') and I took some Advil and went to bed.  Since this day, I had been feeling a little more and a little more pain on the other side of my head.  I called Sister Fusco who told me to go to the hospital.  That’s why I took so long to email today.  When we got there we waited for a couple eternities and then they stuck my head in a big spinny tuby thing then told me to wait one more millennium and a half.  Then when we talked to the doctor she said that everything was fine and was totally normal to feel what I was feeling.  That’s what I had thought, but Sister Fusco wanted me to check to be sure.  They then gave me a bunch of pictures of my head and sent me off!

After that, we passed by the Burger King in the middle of Fortaleza (awesome!) and headed here!  That was pretty much my week. There's not quite as much to write about here in the middle of everything as there is in the middle of nothing.  But I'm super happy with where I am right now!

i love you guys!
Elder Biggs

28 September 2015

Stuff that Reminds me of Home
This is my planner.  All the missionaries like to make covers for their planners so I made this!
These last two weeks have been going by pretty fast, so that’s cool.  And before I forget again, Mom, the package came two weeks ago after I talked with you guys.  So it looks like it takes about 1 and a half months.  Not too bad.

Anyways, since I arrived here in Fortaleza, Ive had a pretty nasty cold.  Then last week it was finally going away. But then Elder Da Hora got it.  And what do you know it.  I got it again.  UGH!  But it’s nothing really bad, just annoying.  Also, my head is fine.  Since last Monday I haven’t really felt anything, so don’t have to worry about my eyes falling out or losing my memory or anything like that.

So this week I was hit with a ton of Trunky-brinks. Twice.  First:  We arrive at a house in the favela and knock on the door.  And as I pay more attention to what’s going on inside, I hear the all too familiar sound of: Doctor Who!  (S1EP3)  They were watching Doctor Who!  Apparently its airing right now in Portuguese, and people are really liking it.  So that was cool!  Then a few days later we find this kid who reminded me a lot of Mattheus, Daniel, and João Victor.  We talked with him for a bit about the Book of Mormon, and ended.  I then decided to pull a Mentalist on him and said, "You look like a guy who likes Doctor Who" and guess what.  I was right!  He loves Doctor Who and we talked about that for like 10 minutes. So that was fun.
In Trindade, I had taught English classes for a couple weeks, but no one seemed too interested and I wasn’t all that good of a teacher.  But this last week I was asked to start giving it here because in Fortaleza, the demand is greater and it’d be a good way to find new people.  So I prepared differently and gave the first class this last Friday, and it was really well.  All the class said that I was very cool, and taught really well.  I think the fact that my Portuguese is better probably helped.  But it was fun.  So I'll be doing that now every week.
Speaking of Trunky, I got 2 more stories to share.  1) there’s a member here with a dog that looks a like Mike, so I sat on the ground and started playing with him.  My comp thought I was crazy, but it totally made my day.  2)We're in the favela again talking with some members, and their big guard dog,  Milo, is laying on the ground in front of me.  So naturally, I start to pet him (but just with my foot, he was really dirty, and big).  And he did the whole dog thing where he lays on his back and I was all like, yeah, it’s all good.  Then I must have hit a tender spot or something because instinctively, he jumps up and goes to take a big bite out of me!  Luckily, he just got my shoe, but my whole shoe fit in his mouth, so that could’ve been nasty.  He walked off a little way, but he felt pretty bad.  Just kinda sat there in front of me not looking at me.  I forgave him, but I definitely will be a little more careful with the dogs here.  Just a little ;)

So yeah, this was a good week.  I love you guys and will talk to you next week!

Elder Biggs
There was a lunar eclipse here last night.  

This was the closest it got until it was time for us to go to bed

5 October, 2015

I'm gonna be here for a long time!

This week was pretty low key.  I've never been so excited for conference! And I think because of that I don’t really remember much until Conference.  But 2 things happened this week that I would like to share.

The first things is that Elder Da Hora and I have been having a pretty hard time getting used to one another, but as he has already been here for 3 transfers, we were pretty certain that we could just wait out one more week until the next transfer and he'd leave.  But this Thursday called President about a question I had, and afterwards said that my call was inspired, that he was going to call later that day, and told me to put him on speaker.  He then told me and Da Hora, that we would be staying together for 3 or 4 MORE transfers.  That we had a lot to learn from one another and needed to find it out.  And he only has 4 more transfers of his mission, so that’s the rest of his mission.  The other thing was that every 2 weeks we'd switch being the senior companion.  So right now im senior (which I really don’t care about but, this means that I beat Elder Wedekind at being Senior :P

Speaking of Wedekind.  Our District leader went home for some reason and Elder Amaral (a missionary that lives with us who has a voice like the oldest of the Warner brother and sister) is our new DL.  And who came here to replace the old DL?  Elder Wedekind!  So that’s pretty awesome to be in the same district with him.  We already taught English together, watched conference in English together, and played ping pong today!  So that’s pretty awesome!  Not for him exactly because he’s got a hernia :P  And he has to have surgery and that’s why he’s here in Fortaleza, but the Lord works in mysterious ways :)

The 2nd thing is about conference.  Friday I decided that I would fast to have a good experience in conference.  Last conference I was very frustrated getting stuff set up in Trindade, and I didn’t understand anything.  But this time we'd watch at the stake center, and the Americans would be able to watch in English.  Saturday was one of the most spiritual moments of my life.  I have never ever felt so spiritually strengthened and uplifted from conference.  And it was in Portuguese because the internet wasn’t working.  I took notes on every single talk, which helped a lot.  And when I started to get a little tired I'd eat the Reese’s Pieces that you guys sent.  After conference I had a spiritual experience very, very special, which I would say really converted me.  I’ve always believed in everything, and even felt the spirit confirming practically all the things I’ve learned and taught, but Saturday night I was able to apply the gospel in a way I never understood.  President Fusco told us a while ago that the only conversion that we had to really worry about on our mission was our own.  And I feel like that happened this Saturday.  Sunday was an incredible day as well.  I've never realized the power that conference has in teaching and helping me.

Anyways, that was my week.  It’s been a good one.  I'll definitely be focusing these next 6 months on studying the talks from this last conference.  I love you guys and will talk to you next week

Elder Biggs

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