If you feed them, they will come

Dec 29, 2014
Eating at McDonalds!

Oi... sounds like you guys are enjoying the holidays... Have you been to a basketball game yet??? When I looked at the picture of Dan’s groomsmen, I couldn’t tell who the one was with long hair.... and then I realized it was Braden! His hair is so long now! It’s been a while since I’ve seen everyone, haha. It was cool to see a picture of all of them, and I was glad to hear they remembered me at the wedding, haha. 

So hopefully you guys have fun skiing... and hopefully Cole can manage on the rails. I’ll have to ask Santa for some Crest white strips when I get home too :) So this ward I’m in now is extremely good. We had a ward council this week, and it was the most organized and productive ward council I’ve ever seen. Every organization was told to prepare plans of how they would spiritually nurture, retain, and baptize inside of their organization. And as well to set baptismal goals for every organization. So all the organizations arrived on Sunday and had done everything that the bishop asked, and they all presented what they would do and what their goals were for the year, and the whole time the bishopric was helping them perfect their plans of action to be even more effective. It was quite the sight to see. 

So last P-day we managed to fix the sink. Grandpa sent me an email saying just unscrew the pipe and take out the stuff thats clogging the drain, which is exactly what we did. When we unscrewed the pipe it looked like someone left milk mixed with eggs and cheese in the road for a year and stuffed it all in our sink pipe. Needless to say, now the water drains perfectly down our sink and we can wash dishes again and our sink is "bem limpinha". 

So this week our ward had a lunch after church in remembrance of the New Year. There were a bunch of members in our ward that were on vacation because of the holidays, however, there were more people in church than usual, and the usual people weren’t even there! Seems like the same principles are true here in Brazil as they are in the states. When you feed the people, they will come. There were like 15 investigators in church with like 20 less actives haha. It reminds me of the young mens activities we had that always had to have food. So even though the lunch was a lot of work for the ward, it turned out to be a big success, and they decided to do it 4 times a year. 

Well, thats about all I got for this week. I hope you guys have a good week. Skiing should be fun, go to Seven Springs, it’s better there.... it might be a little more expensive but just use some of the money your earning from the Google and GoPro stocks ;) Have a good week. Love you guys. Thanks for all the prayers and letters. 

-Elder Udy

Baptism of the Bishop's sister

Church building in Fortaleza

This week Elder Lima came back to visit

Dec 22, 2014

Hey... So I tried sending you and Jackson messages on Facebook from the members here to confirm when I could Skype, but it appears no one got the messages, so I’ll be able to Skype 1 pm on Christmas day... Fortaleza time. I think PA is 2 hours behind, but it’d be a good idea to make sure. So I don’t know how long lunch will take on Christmas... maybe it’ll take a little longer and I’ll end up Skyping like 1:30... but anyways around that time be ready because I’ll call :) And we only have 40 minutes.. but in like 10 months I’ll be home so.. vai dar certo. 

So the new area is pretty different. I live in a 2 man apartment with my companion Elder Daniel. And we are in the same ward as the APs. They live in the apartment next to us. I found out they both play basketball so we might play today if we have time. So everything’s pretty good here in this house... the only difficulty is that when water enters the sink... it doesn’t drain out... well maybe it does, but it takes about a half hour for 1 litter of water to drain down the sink because something inside is clogged. Soooo I’m gonna either learn to be a plumber or we will call a Brazilian plumber to help us out. I’m not really sure how long that sink has been that way, but it’s pretty rough living without a kitchen sink haha. 

So I can’t believe Cole got his license... I was kinda hoping he wouldn’t pass just to be able to remind him forever about his failure... but I’m sure he’s happy that he passed. He must like driving. Does he still call himself the “driving king”?? Sounds like May got a pretty decent job. 

So this week Elder Lima came back to visit. 
Elder Udy, Daniel, and Lima

He taught with us all day one day and bought us pizza and dinner. It was pretty weird to see him again 4 months after he finished his mission... and in normal people clothes. But he was extremely excited to be here. A lot of the time we, as missionaries, don’t understand how great the mission is until its over. But anyways, we’ll be able to talk more on Christmas. 1 pm my time. Have a good week. Happy Anniversary and Merry Christmas! Love you guys. 

-Elder Udy

We ran out of water in the apartment for 2 days!

Dec 15, 2014

Oiiii.. so we had arranged to talk to our families on the 25th this week, but I’m going to be transferred sooooo... I pretty much have no idea how it will be until I get in the new area and discover how they are planning to call their families. So for now I pretty much have no idea but I’ll let you know next week! haha

I liked the pictures. Sounds like you guys are enjoying Christmas. Here in Brazil it’s different because it’s not cold.. however we still put up tons of lights in our house and a tree and everything... but people here don’t usually put up lights. and the trees are always small cuz no one has real pine trees here haha. but the other day I saw a little mango tree (christmas tree). Here the ward is going to have a sweet party on this farm thing on the water and we were going to present the ward mission plan with a theme of Christmas. But, I was transferred haha já era. 

So my new area is Alváro Adolfo.. I think I’m going to live with the Assistants, and I heard that my new companion is great. So hopefully it’ll be good. However... the time is kinda inconvenient with Skype, and the plans in the ward, but it’ll all work out. 

So in my new district there are 4 sisters, the assistants and my companionship... And I know pretty much everyone already so it’ll go well. So this week was the bishop’s sister’s baptism. She had been having a lot of difficulties with coffee, so we told her how important it was for her to read the Book of Mormon. She agreed and read some chapters that we marked for her. In her reading she said she read some verses that we hadn’t marked that seemed to be talking straight to her. Alma 30:41-42. www.lds.org/scriptures/bofm/alma/30.41?lang=eng Through these scriptures she gained the strength to stop drinking coffee. It’ll be sad to leave the area here, but wherever I go, I’m sure the people will be great as well. 

So this week another interesting thing that happened is our apartment ran out of water... so we went 2 days without water... and I think the water delivery boy went on strike or something because we kept trying to call for the 20 liter jug of water to drink but they couldn’t bring it. So I don’t know if you’ve ever lived anywhere that is 90 degrees all the time and doesn’t have water... its complicated. When you want to wash dishes you can’t because there’s no water... and when you get home after sweating all day and want to take a shower... there’s no water to take the shower haha. Good thing it was only 2 days. There are some missionaries that live like 3 hours from Fortaleza that pass like 2 months without water haha. So anyways I’m running out of time, but hope you guys are doing good. Hope Cole passes his driver’s test... because if he doesn’t he’ll be hearing about how the "Driving King" couldn’t manage to pass the drivers test for the next 50 years ;) haha hope you guys have a good week, and enjoy the holidays. Go to one of the basketball games to let me know how they are this year. Have a good week. Love you guys! 

-Elder Udy

Everyone likes to sit in front of their houses at night

Dec. 8, 2014

It’s getting close to Christmas!!  Everyone here is handing out those cards "He is the Gift" as well. However, I think there’s a lot more emphasis on the campaign in the United States because none of our leaders said anything about it... they just gave us a stack of cards and told us to hand them out to people when we contact haha.. but we’ve been handing out a lot to the members to give to their friends. (Learn more about "He is the Gift" by going to http://www.mormon.org/christmas or watching the video below...)

So I’ll be able to talk to you guys on the 22nd. Let’s use google hangout because Jackson won’t be home yet... I think you’ll be able to see when I log into my google account and will be able to call. Let me know if this works for you guys.

Sounds like you’re enjoying indexing.. I remember when I was an official "indexer" haha I didn’t even know that calling existed... some things only happen at BYU. Sounds like you’re helping Cole do something useful with his life with indexing haha. The other day one of the recent converts in my area was playing Minecraft on his cell phone, and I thought about Cole haha. 

So this week was pretty eventful. This morning a guy that lives in the apartment next to us fell and couldn’t move so they called the ambulance and we put him on a stretcher and carried him down to the ambulance because we live in a building, so we had to carry him down the stairs. It was pretty wild. 

Sounds like the missionaries there are trying new things. We’ll have to try going to a retirement home sometime. Here we usually just walk in the street and talk to people because everyone likes to just sit in front of their houses at night, so it’s pretty much perfect haha. I hope you’re buying pizza for the missionaries ;) its been a while since the members bought a pizza for me... so I figure it’s probably been a while since you guys have bought pizza for the missionaries there as well, haha. 

I don’t have much time today, but don’t worry we´ll be able to talk in 2 weeks! It’s been pretty complicated to work out a time to call but in 11 months I won’t have to worry about organizing google hangouts anymore, haha. Talk to you guys soon! Have a good week. I’ll try to write more next week and send pictures. Have a good week! Love you guys.

-Elder Udy

Everyone here went Black Friday shopping

December 1, 2014

    Sounds like you guys are getting excited in the holiday season. So before I forget, some of the missionaries I live with can’t Skype on the 22nd so we are going to talk with President Bonini to see if we can do it on the 24th instead. So if its on the 24th... which I’ll know next week... then I’m not sure yet what time of the day it’ll be, but I’ll let you know in the next week after we talk with our president. O and I don’t remember my user name or password for Skype or Google Hangout, so if you could send those to me that would be nice :)
    So it’s entering into the rainy season here. However, after it rains it gets hotter than normal outside, haha. I haven’t felt cold for a long time... aside from the cold water showers we have here haha, but it sounds exciting to be entering into the holidays. Here we are going to have a Christmas conference in a few weeks. I missed the Christmas conference last year by I think 4 days because I was in the MTC, but everyone said it was amazing so hopefully this year will be too, and I’ll be able to send pictures or something. 
    So hopefully Dad can manage to get those speakers put up before Christmas. Those cords where the speakers are supposed to go have been hanging down from the ceiling for like 4 years haha. Everyone here went Black Friday shopping too... apparently it exists in Brazil... but seeing as they don’t have Thanksgiving, its not exactly the same thing. They have 3 days of "Black Friday" which lasts all weekend but everyone in our area was saying that nothing is actually cheaper... the store clerks just say everything is cheaper and put up sale signs, but leave the same price as it always was haha. 
   So this week was pretty good. One day when we were in the road looking for some people to teach we decided to go to this house that was a reference from some guy we contacted in the road one day. So when we got there, they opened the door and there was this big room with like 20 chairs set up in a circle. So we started to talk to the guy that opened the door and we asked if we could enter and he let us in. He started telling us about how they were going to have a "Cell" which is basically like family night with about 4 or 5 families but they don’t have song, music, or snack. I don’t know how the little kids manage. But anyways, as we entered, we started talking to everyone as more and more members of their congregation entered. Elder Imperador really wanted to teach everyone haha, but they wanted to wait for everyone to get there and it was already 9 o’clock so we had to go home and it didn’t work out. But we almost taught a congregation of another church haha. However, we went back to teach just the family that actually lives in that house, and the man that lives there loved everything we were saying. While we were talking about the Book of Mormon and its importance in finding out if what we say is true, he asked us how much he had to pay to have a copy of the book haha. (Books of Mormon are free)
     The bishop’s sister wasn’t baptized this week, however, we’re going to visit her today and now we’re helping her to be baptized on the weekend after this week. 
   So that’s about all for this week. Sounds like everything’s good back home. In 3 weeks we´ll be able to Skype! #tranqueza Hope you guys have a good week. Love you guys.

-Elder Udy


This week I got the package!

November 24, 2014

So I decided to send all the pictures in the beginning this week, so I wouldn’t run out of time in the end haha... 
Baptism this week
Burning brush in member's backyard...not a good idea...too much smoke

Bee nest we knocked down
Coconut tree
Add caption
Shirt I made for 1 year anniversary
Drawing of me and all my compaions
Elder Imerador ready to burn his tie to mark 6 months anniversary
Tie burning

So for Christmas this year President Bonini wants us to skype on the P-Day before Christmas so that would be the 22nd... 10:00am Fortaleza time. So let me know if that works for you guys or not. If not we can work something out. 

I liked the story about Coach Rhoads and re-living the glory days of 7th grade baskebtall... I can’t believe Jence is playing handball now, haha that’d be pretty sweet to watch her if they make it to the olympics. And our ward mission leader was talking about the 3rd Hunger Games movie that came out.. and I started thinking about how I couldn’t even watch the 2nd one when it came out because I was already on the mish haha, It’s been a while. But I’m excited to watch them all when I get back #trunkyness

Sounds like Thanksgiving will be quite the party.. our Zone Leader, who went home last week, talked about Thanksgiving just about every time I talked to him, haha. Here in Brazil they have a holiday for just about everything you can think of... they even have a kids day where you buy your kids presents! (I always wondered why we don’t have this in the United States)... however, the festivities and fun of Thanksgiving don’t exist here.

So this week I got the package! It got from the United States and into my hands in less than a month! Elder Imperador likes his new shirt (BYU)... I had to open the package, I couldn’t wait... Elder Hodge tried to convince me to leave it under the tree until the 25th, but we resolved to just put everything that was wrapped  under the tree... and the stockings as well. However, I had to open up at least something in that first day, so I opened up that book of stories told by the general authorities through the years (It is Better to Look Up) and Elder Hodge already read the whole book! haha 

So this week we’ve been creating a ward mission plan with our ward mission leader. A plan that has specific action and specific follow up. Our bishop is going to invite the mission president to talk in a fireside to the ward where our ward mission leader will present the plan to the ward with specifics about how and what everyone will do and the mission president will inspire everyone to do it. We hope that he´ll be free on that day but we´ll see what happens. A week ago (P Night) we started teaching our bishop’s sister who’s going to live here in the ward. She’s not a member, but all her brothers and sisters are, and now she’s coming to church with her fiance who was baptized a few months ago. In the first visit with her, we taught her about the restoration and the blessings of baptism by the restored priesthood. She agreed to read the Book of Mormon, search for her own personal confirmation, and be baptized this Saturday. So yesterday was the first day we were able to return to teach her again. She said she had been praying to know if the Book of Mormon was true and one night she had a dream where Elder Imperador and I appeared in front of her house to talk with her. As we talked she felt something touching her heart and she said she heard an angel saying that this was her answer she was searching for, but there were still other things that would be made known unto her. It’s amazing to see God’s hand confirming to others that this is the truth, and that they should be baptized. Her baptism is marked for this Sunday morning and the confirmation afterwards during sacrament. 

I don’t have time to write more but hope you guys have a good week. Don’t forget to read the Ensign this week! Elder Neil L Anderson told us that the conference Ensign should sit right next to our scriptures in importance for these next 6 months until new revelation is given by the living prophets. Hope you guys have a good week and enjoy the cold! Here it’s hot all the time. Have a good week! Love You guys! 

Élder Udy

We had our mission conference

Nov. 17, 2014

     Oi... So this week was transfers... but all 4 of us are staying here in Guadalajara! So now I’m in my 4th transfer here... however there will be a lot of missionaries leaving the mission on the 15th of December so there will be basically.. an expected emergency transfer... so we’ll see what happens. I can’t believe Slippery Rock lost to Hickory! Seems like they can never manage to make it to state playoffs.. however basketball will be starting soon... maybe the basketball team will have success this year :) 
     So this week we had our mission conference with half the mission. Since our new mission president changed some rules in the mission (like district meeting with only your own district and not being able to watch Disney movies on p-day), of course there’s some missionaries and members who say that there are an extreme amount of rules, and they’re not big fans. However, during the conference President Bonini talked to us and expressed his feelings to us about how we are here to please the Lord... and not members, missionaries or anyone else. I felt grateful to know that my mission president isn’t worried about pleasing men, but is devoted in his calling to serve the Lord. Do what the Lord wants him to do. He inspires us to always do what will please the Lord instead of what will please others... because a lot of the time... most of the time.. desires of men aren’t the desires of the Lord. He cited some parts of the general conference talk "Which Way do you Face" and explained how we are here to please the Lord and to do his will.

     Unfortunately this week’s baptism was postponed, but this Saturday will be the baptism and hopefully the weeks that follow as well. We hope to baptize in all the coming weeks... and especially Christmas week. This week we were able to meet and teach lots of new families.. and parents that are already married! I was reading a talk from President Monson, I think, last week where he talked about a general authority that went to some mission, I don’t know which... and interviewed some of the missionaries. One of the missionaries he interviewed had great success on the mission, and the general authority asked him "I suppose most of the people you’ve baptized here have come from references from the members." .... and the missionary responded... "Actually everyone me and my companion baptized we found while we knocked doors"... so the general authority asked him "What did you do different then the other missionaries to have so much success" ... the missionary responded "Every person I met in every door I tried to baptize. Even if they were smoking or drinking, I imagined the blessings they could receive from being baptized and entering in the temple." He went on to say "When I looked at people this way, I could bare a powerful testimony of the gospel and how it would bless their life" ..He was optimistic, diligent and bore powerful testimony.

     These are 3 things that we applied this week and saw a difference in our results... when appointments fell through, we would knock on the door of the neighbor.. and if that one fell through, we went to the other neighbor knowing that some family would accept. President Monson taught in the same talk that we have a "Responsibility" to see our family and friends as they can become. I am discovering that is a key for missionaries and members in helping the Lord bring others to his true church. If we see those around us in the way they can become and think about the blessings they can receive, blessings of eternal life and exaltation, we will have an increased desire to help them, even when they don’t seem to have much desire to help themselves. However, sooner or later, we will find someone that will want that help, and we will be blessed for our diligent service. 
     I’ll send some pictures from the last week. Hope everything’s good back in good ol PA. Hope Cole is excited to drive soon! Have a good week.. thx for the email :) Love you guys. 
--Elder Udy

We had a service project on my 1 year anniversary

November 10, 2014

Oi, tudo bem?? This week we had a service project on my 1 year anniversary that was pretty wild. Elder Hodge had the idea of helping one of the recent converts clean up her back yard... so Thursday morning we went over to help her. His idea was to clean up all the weeds and leaves. There were... a lot... and make a big pile in the back of the back yard.. and burn them all... the only problem is that we are in the middle of a city... it’s not like good ol' Slippery Rock where you can burn whatever you want and no one will mind. So we started to burn the weeds on the command of the member that was helping us... and we found out that all the neighbors in the area are old and already have trouble breathing... just imagine when the smoke started to enter into their back yards. So the project didn’t really go as well as planned...

 but on the bright side, we did end up cleaning the back yard up alot... and she has a coconut tree... I think I drank 5 coconuts. 

So that night we went to Cezar’s house to burn a shirt and Elder Imperador will have 6 months soon so he decided to burn a tie with me... I designed all my companions on the back of the shirt... I almost decided to keep it because I liked it so much. Of course we had to drink Coke as well.. Here in Brazil (Fortaleza) everyone has a weird obsession with Coke. It’s like the grass water (from Cuiabá) of the north east. Everyone loves it. I’ll send some pictures of the shirt.

I always new Brandon Davies was an animal! Everyone always talked about how they didn’t like him, but now he’s starting in the NBA, haha. Sounds like the young men had a good activity... it’s always good when the branch president or bishop is present. Here our bishop has the problem that he has no time... so he’s almost never able to be present in anything except interviews and church. It makes a huge difference for the members when the bishop is present because they feel his love and concern for them. 

So the two brothers didn’t get baptized yet.. hopefully this week. We just have to prepare them a little more for the baptism. Next P-day I’ll know if I’m being transferred or not... it’s pretty likely that I will be because I’ve been with Elder Imperador 2 transfers already and in area 3, but you never know haha. I don’t have much time but I’ll send some pictures of this week. Have a good week. Love you guys. I’ll try to send more next week.

-Élder Udy

P.S. Thanks for the addresses and other stuff... o and for future reference, the secretary of the mission said that sometimes Brazil is taxing up to 600 reais ($200) if they discover something expensive is in the package that isn’t written on the label.. so he said not to send things that are very expensive... thanks for everything, have a good week!!

Don't drink the water!

Nov. 3, 2014

     Mom, sounds like Halloween was fun... someone’s got to keep up all the traditions haha.... 6 pumpkins all by yourself. Here we have Halloween, kind of. Its called Day of the Witches... but no one dresses up or does anything cool like Trick or Treat... it’s just another hallow day they have here in Brazil.... they have a lot here haha. I can’t believe I’ve been here for a year already! I’m going to celebrate on the 6th with our district and some of the members... I’ll take pictures and send them to you guys in the next week.
     So we bought a Christmas tree last week...

I never thought I’d see a Christmas tree so beautiful in a missionary’s house. I still remember that little tree.. like 6 inches tall.. that the Elders had in Slippery Rock one year for Christmas haha...  
          I feel your pain with the sickness.. I got sick this week too, but I’m better now... here in the mission we usually don’t go to the doctor though unless we’re on the verge of death... all the members think the missionaries are crazy, but its worked until now. This week one day we decided to visit one of our bishop’s counselors one day. So when we got to his house, naturally he asked us if we wanted a cup of water... and naturally as missionaries we accepted. The only problem is that these members drink the tap water, and Elder Imperador didn’t know when he accepted... we were both really thirsty. So the member brought out 2 litters of refrigerated tap water. You know what they say about the water in Brazil... but I didn’t really care.. I figured after a year I’d become used to the water and could drink it without worrying... so i drank about 1 liter of the water... and for the next 5 days I came to the conclusion that Americans weren’t built to drink the water in Brazil... Brazilian missionaries don’t even drink the water! haha just the members here.. but Brazilian missionaries no. But I wasn’t too sick and got better fast. I wanted to drink a lot in the members house because we didn’t have water in our house... the place where we always ask for water ran out... sometimes we have to boil water and refrigerate it to have water to drink haha.... water’s pretty rough in this area.
     So last week we found a less active mom with 3 kids... I don’t remember if I wrote about them or not... but the 2 older ones are 11 and 14... and are going to get baptized.... this week while we were in church in fast and testimony meeting the younger one wanted to bear his testimony.. so he opened up to a scripture I had showed him about baptism in 3 Nephi 11:33 that says he who is baptized will inherit the kingdom of God... and he went up and shared the scripture with the ward and talked about the baptism haha, These two brothers have been going to all the activities.. mutual, seminary, Sunday meeting, morning and night.. once I asked him what he wants to do when he gets older and he said he wants to be a missionary like us haha. So anyways that’s about all I got for this week.... by the way.. next time you order a pizza be grateful that it makes it to your house every time because here we order a pizza and they say it’ll take 30 minutes and after an hour we call them asking about our pizza and they say it’s already left and when it finally gets to our apartment at 11, after 2 hours of waiting, we’re already asleep haha... who knew it would be so hard just to order pizza. 
     So anyways hope you guys have a good week. Hopefully you’re feeling better. Don’t forget to celebrate on Thursday for my 1 year mark #tranqueza love you guys! Have a good week.  Tenha uma boa semana! 

-Elder Udy

Baptism and lots of pictures...beware of the poisonous one!

October 27, 2014

Our district last transfer

          I sent some pictures... it’s been a while, I can’t even remember which ones I’ve already sent, and which ones I still need to send. But anyways sounds like Jackson’s getting his life figured out. Sounds exciting to travel across the world with your family... if I was him I’d do it. I can’t believe Marshall broke his collar bone! Thats crazy... like we almost aren’t even allowed to leave our house on P-day haha. But that’s good that he won’t have to go home early. 
          So this week was A’s (51) baptism. We’ve been teaching him for several weeks now. We first found him when he was standing outside of his house with his mom (84) and we asked to talk to him a little and asked if we could share our message with them and he accepted. Soon we discovered that he had a problem with drinking. We taught him for about 3 weeks, but we didn’t teach very well. He didn’t understand it all, but he was accepting to be baptized, so we figured everything would go well. So when the day came for the interview for his baptism, he decided he wanted to wait one more week because he wasn’t feeling prepared mentally. Consequently, that next day he went back to drinking.   We almost gave up, but he told us "I have faith in Jesus Christ that I’ll stop" .... so we decided to teach him again... but teach him for real this time. Step by step. Teach him the Gospel. Teaching repentance and what it means to have a broken heart and contrite spirit. Teaching about the plan of salvation and how Jesus atoned for our sins. Teaching about how we will have to be clean to live with our Father in Heaven one day. And he started to feel a change in his desires... ONLY once he started to understand the gospel. Since we started teaching him this way, instead of focusing mainly on the part about baptism, its been about 3 weeks. He said he’s lost his desire to drink and he knows he’s on the right path, I know this because he says it every time we see him. He can’t read... and he can harldy walk, but he’s received a testimony that this is the only true church and that he’s doing exactly what his Father in Heaven desires. I’ve learned a lot while teaching him, about the process of conversion. A lot of the time we sin because we don’t understand the price of sin. We don’t understand what’s at stake, or we haven’t received a testimony that our Father in Heaven loves us and wants to live with us again. As we learn about the gospel, feel the spirit bearing witness of it, and therefore gain a testimony of it, we start to lose our desire to sin. Maybe the temptations won’t leave all together, but the desire will. 
Baptism day
        This week I also gave a talk. Everyone liked it... Elder Imperador likes to listen to Jeffery R. Holland’s talk in English from 2 years ago.. when he talked about the first and great commandment... so as a result I’ve basically memorized that talk. And most of my talk I was quoting Elder Holland’s talk, just translating it into portuguese... cuz I have it all memorized.. it went pretty good. It’s the first time I’ve given a talk since my first area.  (Below is Elder Holland's talk from October 2012, "The First and Great Commandment")

          So I don’t have much time today, but sounds like things are good back home. We’re getting pretty excited for Christmas. We are going to buy a tree today. I think it’s pretty expensive, but Elder Wilhelm’s dad is a doctor so maybe he´ll cough up some money.... but it’s pretty rough because he’s about as slow to open up his wallet as Rand is. But anyways.. hope you guys have a good week. Thanks for the package that's coming :) and I got a belt from a member in the ward that’ll last me until the end of the mission. Thanks for everything. Have a good week :)

-Elder Udy
Giant bug found in our apartment

Scorpion in our apartment

Another scorpion in our apartment

Service Project...rewiring a house

Our zone 

We are pretty excited for Christmas

       October 20, 2014
       Oi... I can't believe that guy is running across the US and he stopped at our house haha that’s pretty wild. Imagine running across the US... and I thought it was a lot running to Giant Eagle and back. I can't believe you found the Doctrine of Salvation books! They pretty much don't exist in Brazil haha.              
       So this week I got the letter you sent me. I really liked Uncle Kevin's mission journal entries. I still can't believe the one about them getting robbed while they were sleeping. And that the robber stole their car haha. I decided to write more detailed journal entries and specific experiences rather than just about the day. 
        So here we are pretty excited for Christmas... we were talking about decorating the house with lights and a tree and everything already... but seeing as Christmas will happen in the next transfer.... I don't even know if I'll be here haha so maybe we'll wait to find out. O and by the way that was me using my debit card... I bought a hammock and a basketball and maybe something else I can't remember... but the hammock's pretty nice... these days I sleep in the hammock every night. Our house is really hot because we don't have windows... so the other night it was like 90 degrees in the other bedroom where Elder Wilhelm and Elder Hodge sleep so they decided to sleep in our room now because there's a little tiny window where some wind enters sometimes at night and its about 10 degrees cooler. So now the 4 of us sleep in the same room. Me and Elder Imperador in hammocks and the others in the beds. 
       So this week was pretty good. We met a family that was inactive for awhile. The mom of the family told her son that when he sees the missionaries walking in the road that he needs to tell them to visit because she wants to go to church. So the other day this kid comes up to us in the road and says hey elders my mom wants to talk to you because she wants to be mormon. haha so we tried to enter in the apartment complex all week but the telephone in her house is broken and the guard in the front never lets us in unless she authorizes it. So after trying everyday all week and being a little discouraged... the kid found us in the road again and told us he set up an appointment with the guard at 5 o'clock and that we wouldn't have anymore problems entering in the apartment. So finally when we got to talk to the family, the mom asked us for a Book of Mormon and told us how she had worked in the primary and how she was feeling bad that she wasn't going to church and she wanted to return... soon after her son went to church and asked me when he could be baptized and I told him... in about 2 weeks... and he asked if it couldn't be sooner! haha
So that's about all I got for this week. Hope everything's going good at home. Have a good week. Love you guys!

-Élder Udy

I'll be teaching every week...

October 13, 2014

       Heyyyy mom... sounds like Slippery Rock High School football has come a long way in just a few years from being the worst team in school history to 42 in the state. Sounds like everyone's enjoying themselves back home. I heard about that movie “Meet the Mormons” but I didn’t know it was playing in all the theaters across the US... I’ll add it to my list of things to do after the mission haha. Ask Dad if we have the book at home Doctrines of Salvation by Joseph Fielding Smith... I thought maybe he’d have it since he’s always buying new books.  Or maybe Grandpa has it... Udy or Bitter... there’s 3 volumes.. and we have one here... but it’s pretty much impossible to find because it’s old and they aren’t printed anymore. So ask Dad if we have it :) its a good book. If you can find it on the internet or in the house you should send them to me :)
       So this week was good. I don’t know if I told you guys or not but President Bonini changed our district meetings. We used to meet with everyone in the zone (24 missionaries) every Wednesday morning, but now all the districts in the mission will meet separate in their own church buildings. Which means now I’ll be teaching every week haha. It’ll be good to have the meeting more focused on the difficulties of our district and our investigators... Also we could watch Disney movies before but that was done away with as well haha... maybe now I’ll finally be able to convince the Brazilians to play basketball with me because there won’t be anything else to do haha. 
       So Christmas is arriving... we’ve been singing Christmas hymns every morning since August. Now its only 2 months away! Maybe you don’t have the best yard on the street (grubs)... but you can still have the most Christmas lights of the neighborhood! I always wanted to set up millions of Christmas lights.. or maybe I didn’t really want to do it that bad because I never ended up actually doing it.. but it would make for a good picture for Christmas this year :) I’m sure Cole would like to do it. 
       So right outside our house there’s a bird’s nest. And while we were studying this morning a baby bird fell out of the nest right in front of our door. I think the mom pushed it so it could learn how to fly, but anyways it waited there for a few seconds and then entered our house and started to fly around.... and Elder Wilhelm tried hitting it with a broom, and it got scared and hid behind our washing machine... I remembered those birds that always entered in the garage and flew around and would never leave (hummingbirds). But eventually elder Hodge grabbed it in his hand and left it outside. 
       So here in the ward things are pretty much the same. We have some baptisms that fell through these days, but that’s how it goes sometimes here on the mission. I’ll send you guys some pictures of the happenings these days. Hope everything’s going good. Sounds like Jackson’s getting lots of job opportunities... good thing he didn’t study economics ;) have a good week! Love you guys.

Elder Udy

Everyone here liked the talk by Elder Klebingat

October 6, 2014

Hey...Hope everything’s going well in good ‘ol Slippery Rock... sounds like Cole is doing good in school.... I know he’s not that smart, but at least he can manage getting an A in some of the elective classes ;) hopefully he will be able to get into BYU... I heard that Taysom Hill broke his leg the other day... one of the other missionaries that serves in the other ward in our church was all sad one day because he likes BYU football so much haha. I was hoping he’d win the hysman (I’m pretty sure I spelled that wrong, but I cant remember how to spell very well anymore.) 

So in the package can you send a BYU shirt for my companion...and more mix to make maple syrup... and more deodorant sticks :) I gave some away so now I’m running out. So this week it turned out that J didn’t end up getting baptized... actually none of the people we were preparing ended up getting baptized. But in the weeks that come we’ll work things out. So tomorrow is transfers but we get the email on p-day... I’ll be staying here in Guadalajara with Elder Imperador which is good cuz you never know what you’re going to get when a new companion shows up haha. It always makes you nervous... so I’ll try to look for a good leather belt... my other one was spent, but Elder Imperador gave me one that should last at least 3 or 4 weeks... it’s the same as those ones from the US, but I’ll look for a good one. 

So this past week one day we were walking down the street and we saw in the distance a big truck filled with furniture and bags. Then we saw a white guy leave the van dressed in a white shirt and tie... I was kinda confused because you never see other missionaries in your area so I thought it must be a pastor... but turns out our zone leaders were helping someone move into our ward and they asked us for help when we got closer and we ended up helping them move all their furniture into the apartment on the 4th floor! haha so we helped from 4 until 9. 

So this week at conference everyone here liked the talk by elder Jorg alsjkdgjkal (Klebingat) .... I don’t remember his last name... but he talked about 6 points that will protect us. I really liked as well the talk from President Eyring about revelation. And as well the talk... I think it was the second talk from the first session on Saturday, that talked about how we can’t lower the standard of the Lord to please the members of the church.. he said it’s apostasty... he was lifting his hands up and down as an example... he’s one of the 70 I think. I also really like the image of Presidente Monson giving all he had to help those who were in need.. as always Elder Holland’s talk was good too... As we learn more about the prophets life, we learn more about how we can serve others better and be true disciples of Jesus Christ.  (To read or watch the talks referred to here, go to this web address   https://www.lds.org/general-conference/sessions/2014/10?cid=HPSU100514465&lang=eng

So I hope Dad and Cole are doing good. Tell them I said hi... This is about all I got for this week. Hope everything goes well at home, and Cole doesn’t get too full of himself haha. Have a good week. Love you guys. 

-Élder Udy

Elder Galvao made these noodles for us

Sept. 29, 2014

Hey... Sounds like the football team at Slippery Rock has come a long way in just a few years from the worst team in history to a team that beats Hickory... Dad sent me some photos of the field.. it looks pretty nice now days.. it was pretty sad how we were possibly the only school in the state that had a track made of rocks and dirt haha. Thats exciting that Chelsea got engaged... My companion says he’s going to propose to his girlfriend when he has 1 year and 6 months on his mission so he can marry her right when he gets home haha but right now he’s only been here 4 months and she's pretty good looking... we always joke with him that she’s going to send the dear john any day now... until now all my companions that had girlfriends..lost their girlfriends while they were my companion haha 3 of the 6..
we´ll see what happens.

It must be hard for the basketball team to park cars if there isn’t anyone that wants to play basketball anymore... let alone park cars haha. Hopefully Cole enjoyed. I don’t know if the fake blood will win Ms. Huth’s applause... we got a C just because we did the whole project at home (didn’t use time effectively in class) and we used a toy gun and toy billyclub (too violent)..... we´ll see how it goes haha.

So I thought of some things I need...a new belt..like a nice leather belt (Black) that will last until the end of my mission... One that doesn’t rip in two pieces after 2 months of use haha because that’s what’s happening these days. But other than the belt I can't remember right now.... I was going to write it down... but then I forgot and now I can’t remember. I’ll try to think of it for next week. 

So all our meals with members were falling through... mostly because our ward scheduled all in-actives haha... so one day Élder Galvão made these noodles for us... it’s basically like chef boy rd. But he put in a ton of salt... and it ended up making everyone sick that day, haha, so hopefully next week we have more luck. So we have this investigator that’s the dad of an active family.. its only him that’s not a member... and we’ve invited him to be baptized in every different form imaginable to try to get him to agree... so yesterday our ward mission leader and one of the bishopric counselors went to his house with one of the white baptism jumpsuits... to challenge him to be baptized by saying... "J" this Saturday there is going to be conference and afterwards I’m going to baptize you wearing the white jumpsuit.. the missionaries are going to help us prepare this week and on Saturday will be your baptism haha.... hopefully he accepted.... I don’t know yet because we haven’t had a chance to talk with them yet.

So this week there weren’t any baptisms, but this coming Saturday at least one person will be baptized. So we’re pretty excited here cuz we’re all having lots of success. So anyways... that's about all I got... have a good week. Feed the missionaries!

Love, Élder Udy 
Baptism Day


Duck Heart

Chimarrao (Yerba Mate)
Chimarrao (Yerba Mate)

The Brain of the Shrimp has a lot of flavor!

September 22, 2014

Hey family...Sounds like BYU is doing pretty good... seems like they’re always good except the year I was there haha. Sounds like Bandit is getting pretty old... but at least he won’t run away anymore... I’m sure you’ll miss that... of all the times he ran away, I think dad only had to chase him maybe 3 times... but now it’s all a thing of the past. 

I’m sure the missionaries were thankful for the pizza.. sometimes when we are hungry with nothing to eat, we pass by a member’s house and ask.. "oii do you guys happen to have a cup of water to quench our hunger... everyone is so eager here to feed us that usually it works out. :) Oh and this week we only had “black cow” once, but we also ate duck and shrimp.. with the head, legs, tail and everything... the brain of the shrimp has a lot of flavor, you should try it sometime.
Duck Heart
I still haven’t bought a hammock.. I think I will today. Our bishop has a shop that sells hammocks and furniture... they’re more expensive than some of the other shops in downtown Caucaia, but it’s always good to support the bishop. 

I’ll try to think of things for you to send for Christmas. Elder Imperador wants a hackysack if you can find one haha. O and I finally got the package from Grandma and Grandpa :) tell them I said thxx. 

This week we had 4 baptisms in the ward. We baptized 3 and the other companionship baptized one. Last Sunday we received a referral from someone in the ward, and we went to visit him on Tuesday.. when we got there him and his family were telling us about how he’s been going to church and he already planned his baptism. So then, I asked him when would be the baptism.. he said this Saturday! He hadn’t been baptized because his mom is inactive, but he lives in the same house with his cousins, aunt, and uncle who are all active members... So we taught him everyday this week and he was baptized on Saturday! Also we baptized Raquel that has been reading the Book of Mormon ALOT and her son. I have pictures, but this computer isn’t letting me send them. -_- .... I’ll try again next week.. It’s a good picture... I’ll try again to send the pictures...
but anyways.. hope you guys have a good week, Love you guys. 

-Élder Udy