This week was really different. In the beginning of the week we were super busy preparing for the visit of Elder Aidukaitis, which was incredible! There was one meeting with some leaders from the mission on Wednesday, and then on Thursday and Friday there were two meetings per day, each with a quarter of the mission. There was also another short one with just the members of the mission staff. Luckily, I got to go to all of the meetings! And since they weren’t all exactly the same, it was great because I got to learn everything that he taught.
I was playing prelude when Elder Aidukaitis walked in on Wednesday and he walked right up to me and said, “Elder Maughan? Are you the brother of Elder MAUGHAN? You have to work very hard to be like your brother!” So that was kind of cool. [Elder Aidukaitis the mission president when Craig’s oldest brother, Eric, served in Brasilia.]
Elder Aidukaitis is awesome! He is an incredible missionary. In each meeting with him, he spoke for about two and a half hours, so there was plenty to learn! He had a report with the results of a questionnaire that we did a few weeks ago about Preach My Gospel and our missionary work, so he knew exactly where we needed help (and our mission could definitely use some help in a lot of areas). He spoke about how to work with members, how to find new people to teach, how to be more effective in contacting people, how to help people be more receptive to us, and a lot of small, important techniques! There were lots of pages of notes to be taken, and now there are a lot more things to go out and apply! I think I also learned a ton just from his example. There’s a lot to learn from having a Seventy in the room! The way he talked with people, and how well he knew the scriptures, and everything. He also taught us about the doctrine of Christ, as taught in 2 Nephi 31 and 3 Nephi 11, and how important it is that people have faith, repent, and are baptized!
On Thursday night after the afternoon conference, I was with Elder Clark and Elder Marques, since my companions had returned to the office after the morning session, which was with the Santos zone. It’s always a lot of fun. We ended up just contacting people for the rest of the night, and it was a great experience! There was at least one awesome miracle: we went to go contact a referral from another contact, and nobody answered the door, but after a few minutes as we were discussing our plans for the rest of the night, suddenly the door clicked open. We kind of peeked our heads inside and there was this woman coming out! We started to talk with her and soon she invited us to the porch to sit and talk. We said a prayer, and were kind of getting to know her, trying to decide what we could teach, and suddenly Elder Clark invited her to be baptized! She was a little surprised at first, and then said yes and seemed really excited about it! She said, “okay, so to be baptized next Saturday I’ll need to go to church on this Sunday, right? Where’s the church? What time are the meetings?” She’s from another area, so we’ve put her in touch with the sisters there. But that was great!
Today after English class, Elder Woodbury and I went to the Orquidário, so here’s some pictures! We saw crocodiles, monkeys, crazy tropical birds, turtles, and a bunch of other cool stuff.
I think I told you that we weren’t allowed to attend church last week? We had to stay in the house all day. I guess some of the nationwide protests happened in Santos too, specifically in our area. Here it was totally calm, no problems, but it’s better to be safe than sorry! So we stayed inside and studied the whole day haha. I never thought I’d skip church on my mission….
That’s all the news I can remember! Thanks for everything!