Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Serious Celebrating and Six Sister Missionaries

Monday, May 5th we invited Daniel OIshi, the Mehls and Faccios over for hamburgers without telling them it was John’s birthday. John barbecued hamburger, I made buns, he baked potato fries, and we served them with carrot casserole and fruit salad. 

Waiting for hamburgers - May 5th

Fruit salad is easy with leite condensado with lime juice as sweet sauce.

We had been visited earlier in the day by the sister missionaries who stopped in to wish him “Parabéns” and to sing to him. 

Birthday cupcake from the Sister Missionaries for Elder McKinney
The week was pretty normal until Saturday the 10th. The sisters stopped by and brought me a Mother’s Day mug and a hug.  {We also enjoyed having them over on Sunday to Skype their moms. We were grateful to be able to speak with a few of our children too!} 

Fatih, Hope, and Charity Mug for Sister McKinney
 Elder McKinney had an interview at the church that afternoon and I had a piano lesson. We were surprised to find President Fernandes at the church conducting interviews with the Sister missionaries. He then left to do the same in Guarapuava. 

Birthday's are alright!

Marcia's cakes
That evening we were able to participate in a Family Home Evening/Birthday Party for Adenilson at Maria’s home. Marcia, Eva, Maria, and their children were joined by all 6 Prudentópolis missionaries, and Antonio & Eric in the cozy, small, front room as we had a lesson, sang, played a game, and were served cake and punch. 

“despedida” or farewell for Thalyta
We then joined the Mehl family in celebrating the “despedida” or farewell for Thalyta. She will be entering the CTM in São Paulo on May 21st. She has many family members and friends who are non-members of our church. She has been a terrific example for them. 

Grandmother's from all over the world have a lot of love. 

Thoughts written to help prevent
overflowing emotions. 

We gathered at her grandmother’s home and mixed with friends and family.  Renato fed us all from the barbecue which was then passed around just like rodízios at home. 

Renato is a great cook - that is a serious grill.

We had a zone conference on the 13th then prepared our normal lessons for seminary, Sunday School, Priesthood, Primary etc. We cleaned the church on Friday in preparation for a baptism and RS activity the next day. We had a sad phone call earlier that morning. We have been getting to know the fellow who we hire to take the branch to the temple, to district conferences, and youth conference, etc. He was killed in a planned and proudly advertised murder.  He had been shot while resting in the bus, waiting for the university night students to return home to Prudentópolis. We hurriedly changed our morning plans and attended the funeral. Here they bury within 24 hours of a death. The mulher (unmarried woman that he lived with) was justly distraught. It has been a hard thing for many of the members who were his friend. We were able to mourn with those who mourn as we knew some of the other bus drivers who were his partners and friends. Afterward, we stopped at the cemetery next to the funeral home to see if we could possible help document some of the graves. Many of them are like family crypts__ some marked and some not. The young man who works there said he would talk to the city since it is the municipal cemetery and see if they would allow us to do so. He said he had tried several years ago when he was hired to document what he could but just had not been able to find the time. As far as he knows, there are no records for most of the burials there. 

Happy Day for Moacir  & the Sisters - This young priest
has been able to perform several baptisms & will be
prepared when he leaves on his mission this year.
Normally, I try not to put total names on line for safety reasons but I have to type the last name of our newest member. Michalczyszyn. There was some joking about some not wanting to baptize him because of the difficulty of pronouncing his last name. In reality there was some practice pronunciation done before both the baptism and the confirmation. He brought several non-members of his family with him to the baptism.  Elder McKinney noted that one of his aunts sang every word to one of the hymns. He used that as a teaching example in seminary about how our hymn book was initially started by Emma Smith from doctrinally correct hymns from other religions. Then he showed one of the newer hymns written by an apostle. 

Everyone is waiting to see what Paulo will say!
Can you tell the undying love segment wasn't
really punishment and everyone wanted photos.
As with many of the new sets of missionaries, the youth always convince them that we don't have enough activities.  Starting at 5 pm on Saturday the 17th we had a spiritual thought before the sister missionaries conducted some LDS oriented games. Two teams guessed Book of Mormon related topics in a “Jeopardy” type setting. At one point after knowing the answer to a question, one young man yelled, “Yeah! Seminary!”  One of the funnest parts of the game involved the husband having to declare their un-dying love for their spouses. There were also some consequences for wrong answers mostly administered by family members on the opposing team. 

Little brother got to smear big brother.

It looks like this group missed the cream on the face.

There were salgados and bolos in the middle of that group and not much was left.
Afterward, there were other games under the patio and as always “Salgados” or salty things (they are in reality meat or cheese filled pasta) and “bolos” or cakes. I tried a new recipe, making an apple cake with carmel frosting, that was a real novelty and disappeared fast. Others had coconut, chocolate, and yellow cakes – most with sprinkles on top. 

Everyone had a good time. It was a great social. I just wish we would see all of these people the next morning in church. However, in a major step for our branch, most of the leaders of organizations were in ward council at 7:30 the next morning. 

The group photo for Sister Mehl to take with her.

On the home front we are excited for Jeremy and Karissa to have finished another year of law school.  He has a job with a law firm specializing in intellectual property this summer and Karrisa will be studying for the bar.  It is scheduled on July 29th. We are so proud of her and her tenaciousness in completing her schooling while being a mother and wife.  We are grateful that her dad was able to be at graduation and that Dan, Shaliese & Mike, Deb & Jay, and Phill were able to support them for their special day. 

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