Elder Nissinen

Elder Nissinen

Saturday, June 27, 2015

Mirta's baptism!!!

Hey everyone! 

Everyone´s commented about how hot it´s getting at home - luckily for Brazil it´s the complete opposite. We´re heading into winter this time of year, and, keep calm, I actually had to bring out my coat this last week. Shocking, I know. But even though it´s getting cold outside, we´ve been contacting a lot of people whose hearts are warming up to the gospel. Tonight we have another baptism (Nubia), but after her our teaching pool´s gonna be a little dry. So starting last week we´ve been doing a lot more contacts on the street, bus, mall, etc for some new people. 

The English class has been having some good successes of getting people out of their homes and into the church building. We knocked on someone´s house Monday night, who didn´t seem very interested until we started talking about the ward´s weekly volleyball night and free English classes. The next day we took her and her friend to the chapel, did a quick tour of the building, and they stayed for the class. They loved it all, and are gonna be at church tomorrow. Most of the people attending these classes are not even active members, maybe one or two. Most are non-members or total less-actives. I think we´ll start seeing some baptisms coming out of it soon. Or maybe all this is because of the cookies I´m bringing.

President has been working on a special project with the Temple and Church Headquarters in Brazil - which are like a block from the Mission Office. A lot of people in Brazil have the idea that the Mormon Church is only for rich people - because every other brazilian religion is all about offerings, tithing, and sacrifices. So in their minds a good-looking church means that you´ve gotta pay a lot to get in. APOSTASY. So President has been going to a bunch of high schools and promoting tours of the church grounds and all it offers - Self Reliance Centers, Family History Centers, Temple Grounds, Language classes, etc. Tuesday we were invited to speak about it all to a high school board. They liked the idea alot, and that same afternoon, President took them all around the grounds. We gathered all the other Americans in the zone to put up all the american stuff we brought from home - shirts, keychains, pictures, stuff like that. When all the directors came in the room, we sung the National Anthem for them. They loved the whole tour, and in August the school will start doing "Field trips" to go on the same tour. Basically it´s like this: the Church has a bunch of resources, and we want more people to know about them. And with a whole school knowing and going into the church, there´s bound to be some fruits coming out of that too. 

I heard the news about passing gay marriage yesterday. There´s a certain urgency to spread the gospel as both the Lord and the adversary are hastening their works. I´m grateful and know the Church is true.  

Have a great week!

Love Elder Nissinen

Sunday, June 21, 2015

Hey everyone! 

The hard part about being in the office and living with 7 other elders is how EVERYONE reminds you about how long you´ve been on your mission, how many days are left, etc. This week was our Multizone Conference on Wednesday and Thursday, and the first part of the meeting is where all those who are leaving at the end of the transfer go up and bear testimony. NOT EASY! 

But pushing all that aside, our area is still growing and working wonders. Today Mirta, our Argentinian investigator, is getting baptized! She´s so excited, and even better, her son came from Italy to watch the baptism and come to church the next day. Even though we don´t understand all of her spanish, she bore a strong testimony that every time she prays, reads, goes to church, and has the lessons, she feels more and more certain that this is the right path. YES! 

Nubia, the cousin of a recent-convert, is also getting pumped for her baptism for the next Saturday. She´s cut coffee, reading the Book of Mormon and praying every day. We´ve had to adjust our schedule a little bit because of her work. So our lessons are everyotherday at 9am before she heads off to work. We´re preparing her recent-convert cousin to baptize her next weekend. 

Just work work work in the 5th ward for us. Time goes by fast!

Love you lots!

Elder Nissinen

Saturday, June 13, 2015

Happy Pday Y´all!

We had a great last week! Let´s see if I can remember everything that happened.

The previous week we were planning a SUPER Leadership Council for all the ZL´s and STL´s for this last Monday. The Church has a property way out in the rural part of the mission, and usually they use it for campouts and youth camps. But our mission rented it out for a super-pday for the council. We all had to get up super early Monday morning for all of it to work out - 4AM! And it gets better, because of the worries of security and traveling super early, President had most all of the 14 Zone Leaders sleep at the back of the mission office in the inflatable mattresses we found - man it was packed! But the best part was being able to change into normal clothes after the morning meeting. We had a huge treasure hunt and some team-building acitivies. And lots and lots of pictures to send - fun time! 

Tonight we have something called a Festa Junina (June Festival). Because it´s fall-time in June, it´s kinda like a Harvest Festival deal. Everyone gets dressed up in hick clothes, eat hot dogs and corn on the cob. In the 5th ward it´s a big deal, so we´re planning on having a bunch of non-members for us to contact and later teach. Pdays on Saturday are a blast!

This last week we also got 6 more Elders waiting for their visas to Portugal! Elder C.

(the one who has facial paralysis) got one of them, so technically we have 6 secretaries in the office, 3 of them who´s job is to pass referrals to other missions and areas. So we get a lot of referrals from the missionaries doing contacts in front of the temple.

The work is going great as always in the 5th ward. Next Saturday we have two more baptisms planned up, Mirta and Nubia. Mirta is an Argentinian lady who moved not too long ago into our area because of family problems. The Gospel touched her heart, went to church, received an answer that everything was true, and is super excited for her baptism. Nubia is Almir´s cousin, who got baptized less than a month ago. She also went to church for the first time last Sunday and loved it. There´s a phrase between us and the members that the ward is bombing!

Next week is Multizone Conferences - my last one. The trunkyness (kinda like senioritis) is knocking, knowing that all the missionaries leaving in the next transfer bear their testimonies - dang it. Scary.

Missions are the best! There´s so much to do here in the office, the mission, and in our area that all I have time to do when we get home is sleep, eat, and crash before thinking about anything else. 

This church is true! Love you all. Congratulations on graduation - go summer!

Love Elder Nissinen

Sunday, June 7, 2015

Happy Pday once again!

Last week I was "officially released" as the Executive Secretary, and now my new assignment is......the Housing Secretary! So for the next 5 weeks now I´ll be handling all the contracts, bills, and maintenance of the 50 some odd houses/apartments the mission takes care of. I don´t think I´ve ever studied (let alone look or touch) a real contract, or even come close to paying a water bill, but it´s good practice for some "real world application." 

There´s some perks to being the Housing secretary too. Yesterday I decided to take a look at the stock of all the stuff that´s broken, working, and working not so well. A lot of the junk is box fan parts. One thing led to another, and I´m in a project to fix up the fans so the mission doesn´t have to buy any more new ones. I´m imagining that the Mission Office will be something like a Autoshop - but for fans! Don´t know how I got into this kind of hobby, but it´s a good break after dealing with lawyers and real estate people every now and then.

The 5th ward fire is still burning strong! Last Saturday we baptized Almir, and it was a double-baptism with a neighboring ward in our zone. Man Pdays don´t get better than that! The next day, Sunday, he was confirmed and then supported to receive the Aaronic Priesthood - BOOM! He even went out on splits with us this week AND we´re teaching his cousin who lives with him, who´s now marked for baptism on the 20th! We are LOVING this ward here and we´ve seen some great miracles.

 I´m sending this e-mail a little later today because we just came back from a SUPER PDAY. There´s a place called 25 de Março (March 25th) that´s like a huge Portobello Road FULL of people, shops, and salesmen. It´s a must-do in São Paulo - because everything´s super cheap; you just gotta know where to find it haha. I bought a cheap São Paulo futebol team watch (it´s probably a fake Chinese deal but who cares haha) and a legit tie. 

Thanks for the emails, and hope you all have a great pday too! The Church is true!

Love Elder Nissinen