Monday, January 25, 2016

January 25, 2016- week 73- Lost, conferences, and piano playing in Capivari, Brazil!

Hello family!

Well, this week was a super busy week for me. I was in Piracicaba for 3 days of the week! Monday we had P-Day as usual, then on Tuesday, we were originally going to Piracicaba for our District meeting, but it was moved to Wednesday- 2 hours before the Missionary World Broadcast. The Broadcast was awesome. The main theme was "Teach repentance and baptize converts". We decided to stay that night at our District Leader' house- Elder Schmitz. Of course we did what we always do when missionaries stay the night at other missionaries' houses- We bought Pizza! Haha That was real fun.

The next morning we woke up pretty early to catch the bus to the chapel where we would have the Mulitzona. There were 4 Zones there- Piracicaba (my zone), Novo Piracicaba, Botucatu, and Rio Claro. We arrived right after the first prayer because our bus ran a little late, so when we briskly walked into the chapel I could see President burn me with his eyes. I apologized afterwards. haha

I don't know how other Multizonas are done, but here, it usually starts out with us saying our purpose, then a scripture from D&C that we always recite, then after all of that, we had the "Novinhos" or the Greenies from the first or second transfer go up and bear their testimonies. I still remember after only a week out in the field going up and bearing my testimony in Portuguese watching my trainer- Elder Holder- to see if I was saying everything correctly. Ah, how the time has passed so quickly. Then, our Zone leaders gave us a small training. When we returned, we had the Assistants give their training and then lunch.

I was so happy to see Elder Arnson there once again. Also Elder Stone. That dude is too much haha. When we came back from lunch, the old missionaries going home within the next two transfers got up and bore their testimonies. I always liked this part, but now it only gets me even more trunky because these are actually missionaries that I know and am good friends with who arrived on the mission only a little bit before me. It's still a strange concept for me to know that I only have 4 more transfers.

Anyways, after that Sister Canuto, Presidente Carvalho, and Presidente Canuto gave their trainings. Presidente Canuto talked a lot about effective planning and teaching.

After the multizona, we also found out that interviews were going to be the next day, so instead of wasting another 25 Reais, we were gonna stay the night at the secretaries' house and then go to the office the next day (which was really close) and then do the interviews.

My companion, Elder Harbison, and I were the first people to be interviewed in the mission on Friday. I told him about the ecclesiastical endorsement thing for BYU and so I need to get that done as soon as possible and then call him. We got home back to Capivari around 13h then had to go to lunch appointment right away, but then we got lost, and it was just so frustrating and exhausting cause we were out for so long away from our home.

Eventually, we found the house, ate lunch, then went back to our house to get ourselves properly ready. On Saturday, we went to go visit that one woman and her family and she's doing a lot better. She got accepted to go to college, so that's awesome! Also she went to church on Sunday with her daughters.

Yes, I do have a calling as the Branch pianist. I can honestly say I have gotten a lot better at sight reading. Cause that's pretty much what I do every Sunday. I don't really have time to practice playing the piano, so I just use the Lord's help and everything works out. This past Sunday I did have a toddler come and try to play piano with me during one of the hymns. haha

Also, these past few days have been SUPER hot. So yeah, the river has gone down a whole lot and it is no longer covering the streets and flooding the houses.

Dang it. Well I had been thinking that you had already sent a box to me and that it contained a journal. I guess I'll have to look for one here, but I really don't have the money to buy it right now. This past week, I didn't write anything.

Have a wonderful week everyone! Talk next week.

Elder Collins


The only Sister from my group (Sister Vazquez) is going home... :(

Harbison, Me, and Elder Stone (we've all been each other's comps)

Multizona em Piracicaba

Monday, January 18, 2016

January 18, 2016- week 72- Flood, wasps, and a new companion in Capivari, Brazil!

Hey Family and friends!

This past week for me was a little slower than the rest. It included transfers for me. On Monday I found out that my companion Elder Lloyd would be transferred to Piracicaba and I would stay here in Capivari and get another companion. An American named Elder Harbison. I was happy that it was going to be an American, but a little sad because I loved Elder Lloyd. He's one of my favorite companions on the mission. I think my top favorites are Elder Stone, Elder Maxwell, and Elder Lloyd. On Tuesday, we woke up early to get over to the rodoviaria (bus station) at Piracicaba. Elder Harbison, my new comp, was already there, but the bus didn't leave until like 4 hours later, so I hung out at the rodoviaria talking with all the Elders and Sisters missionaries I knew. There were a fair amount this time- like 50.

Anyways, we got back to Capivari, and during the week I showed Elder Harbison around the area. We went and taught some families, but we also had quite the stressful situation to deal with. A woman that we've been teaching (it was her daughter that we baptized) has depression and so she tried to kill herself this past week. We went to her house and tried to help her. Then she tried to OD and had to go to the hospital. We're probably gonna go back there today or tomorrow. I feel kinda bad for her, because her life really is filled with bad things, but instead of her trying to move forward, she's dwelling on the past and doesn't want to do anything. I'll be praying real hard for her.

Also, it's been raining so darn much here in Capivari! I can't remember if I told you or not, but we live really close to a river, and because of the many days of rain, the river has flooded over and is creeping up our street. It's already flooded the first 3 houses and is about to get the next two on our street. The families of these houses have already evacuated and the river keeps getting closer and closer to our house. I don't think it'll reach our house because we've still got like 15 feet before it reaches us. It hasn't been raining these past two days, but the problem is that the water is coming from a different city where it IS raining, and it just fills up our river here. Oh well.

This week we will be in Piracicaba a lot. We have District meeting, Multizona, and also a world wide transmission for all of the missionaries. This week should be fun for us.

Well, thanks for all the emails!

Elder Collins

P.S. Something funny happened this week...Well, we have a wasp's nest in our backyard, and it's super huge, so we tried to get rid of it. We made lots of smoke to smoke them out and then my companion took a big stick and knocked the nest to the ground. When it hit the ground, lots of wasps started to swarm so we ran back as fast as we could to inside our house then closed all the windows and locked the doors. So basically we were stuck inside of our houses for a while waiting for the wasps to go away.


My new comp Elder Harbison.

That's the river.

Monday, January 11, 2016

January 11, 2016- week 71- No transfer, but new companion in Capivari, Brazil!

What is up y'all?

This past week was a hot and wet week. We've been getting lots of rain these past days, but that's okay cause I like rain. I got burned pretty bad from two days that we went knocking doors. The sun is relentless in trying to burn our faces. We've been trying to find new people to teach and bring to church. Unfortunately, the baptism we had marked for this past Saturday fell through. He had to work, so we've rescheduled for his baptism to be in about 2 weeks. In the mean while, we'll use this time to find new investigators. 

Also, today we found out about the transfers. I will be staying here in Capivari, but Elder Lloyd will be going to Piracicaba. Another American named Elder Harbison will be coming here to be my companion. I'm sad about Elder Lloyd leaving, but I'm happy that another American will be coming here. This transfer, which is my 13th on the mission, should be a fun one. I've heard rumor that it may be a transfer of 7 weeks, but I've also heard that it'll be 5 weeks. We'll see what happens. 

Well, this past week we have helped some people with problems that they're having. The most spiritual part of my week was when we had a lesson with a woman that was thinking about killing herself. We talked about a lot of things and pretty much all of us were crying. 

To answer your question, yes I see every photo that you send. I think it would be a little bit better if you attached the picture instead of just pasting it to the text. It makes it a little hard to see that way. Also, you could always try a video. I don't know if it'll work. I tried sending a video to you guys, but the file was too big. I thought about google drive, but my ldsmail account doesn't have the option of google drive. 

Unfortunately, there is no temple in our mission, so we can't visit the temple. I'll have to go to the temple after my mission. 

Sounds like there's a lot of people leaving and moving to Naples. Do you think I would recognize our ward anymore? haha 

Thanks for the emails! I wish all of you a wonderful week!

Elder Collins


13th transfer

New planner

Cheese cake that we made at our recent converts house (she has an allergy to cameras I think).

Monday, January 4, 2016

January 4, 2016- week 70- Happy New Year from Brazil!

Hey Family!


I cannot even begin to believe that it's already 2016. It still feels like it's 2014 to me. And then like I left everyone and put everything on pause. I can't believe that things are changing! I guess it won't actually hit me until I get back home. 

Well, I hope you guys enjoyed the New Years party in Florida. I had my own little party here in Capivari, Brazil. We invited two other missionaries to hang out with us. Elder Pina and Elder Schmitz. Unfortunately, it was Elder Pina who took pictures and he forgot to bring his converter so he can't send his pictures to me. I'll have to send them to you guys next week. I knew I should've taken pictures with my camera. I've only got a few pictures for today. Anyways, they came over around 19h and we had our own churrasco! It was pretty good. We also played UNO, talked, laughed, watched the fireworks, and enjoyed the night together. It's too bad we can't do that all the time haha.

Now that everyone is getting back home from the Christmas and New Years time, we'll be able to continue our work. We are teaching a man that is preparing to be baptized this week on Saturday. He is really good. After him, we'll have to return to looking for new investigators so that should be fun. Also, this week is the last week of the transfer. 

Well, that's pretty much it for this week. It wasn't too productive because of the lack of people, but this week should be better. Also, it's been raining a whole lot here. We live really close to the river, so when it overflooded it started getting closer to our house. It's gotten better though. 

Anyways, hope you all have a great week of school! Woo! haha Good luck everyone.

Love you all,

Elder Collins

P.S. The LAN house isn't letting me download any of my photos so I'll have to wait till next week when we'll use the library again. Sorry :(

Photo (from Elder Arnson)

 (from left to right) Elder Collins, Elder Arnson, Elder Driggs, President Canuto, Elder Maxwell, Elder Bush, and Elder King