We arrived here in Acre suuuuuuperrr late, but thankfully had a family there at the airport waiting for us. They are angels and showed us where the chapel is and how to get there from our house. When we woke up the next morning we had a member to go out with us/show us around. I have to admit that the first few days were really hard. I felt overwhelmed and lonely. However, I had to remember the hymn ´´Count Your Many Blessings.`` We had many members ready to help, lunch everyday, and investigators.
We picked up teaching a woman named, Liliane, that didn´t want anything to do with baptism. She had already been to church a few times but wasn´t interested. We arrived and instantly became friends. After a few visits she accepted to be baptized. She was baptized Saturday and confirmed Sunday. It was quick but special.
My companion is from Ecuador. It is funny because alllll my companions have been older than me... even my ´´daughters.´´ She will turn 21 in May. She is super obiedent and speaks really good Portuguese already. My area is in the center of Rio Branco which I love!!! It is a city pretty well developed and has lots of shops. It is a whole lot cleaner than Manaus and the people are super nice. We already have lots of people to teach. This Saturday we will have a baptism of a man named John. He is from Peru. He only speaks Spanish so luckily my companion can communicate with him. However, I can actually understand their conversations and teach a little in Spanish, too. I going to work to learn Spanish with my companion this transfer! Our ward is pretty tiny about 100 people, but it is a ward which is great!!
I have been studying in Alma 15-25 this past week. It has given me so much strength to read about the example of the missionaries in the scriptures. Alma was imprisoned and beaten... he suffered hunger and thirst just because he was preaching the gospel. I am not going through anything nearly as hard. I know that if we search we can find joy in everyday and always we can learn from the example of the men and women in the scriptures.
I am doing well! Thank you soooo much for everything. Miss you all like crazy!!
I am being transferred to Rio Branco, in the state of Acre. It is a 2 hour plane ride from Manaus.... and since I was in Itacoatiara I had to take a 5 hour bus ride first. I am tired, to say the least. I will be training a Sister from Ecuador and opening an area :) I am sooo nervous!! We are going to arrive in our area and not know ANYTHING!! Sometimes I don´t understand why the Lord placed me with another Sister that is learning Portuguese, to open an area, and to train. I will be learning a lot this transfer!
I was really sad to leave Itacoatiara. One transfer was just too short. The sweet family that we helped marry and baptize cried and cried when I had to say goodbye. I have to admit that I cried as well. I think my purpose there was to just help this one family. I have a love for them that is hard to explain. I love serving a mission, because we get a glimpse of how Heavenly Father feels about each of His children.
Other than that I don´t have much too much to report, but I just want to share my testimony that I know Christ lives. He knows each us by name and took upon Himself every pain and affliction. Now it is our job everyday to apply the Atonement in our lives through repenting and keeping the commandments. I know that if we do these things, one day we can return to live with our Father and families for all eternity.
Stay happy and safe! Keep on going. Sending my love and prayers!!!
P.S. The pictures are saying my goodbyes to the beautiful people of Itacoatiara. And I LOVE mail!! And when your morning exercises consist of a run along the Amazon River!!!! I'm so thankful for this once in a lifetime experience!!
Morgan did not have much time this week to write, but she asked that we share these photos:
Baptism of a sweet little girl. Her uncle brings her to church every week, and she asked that we teach her because she wanted to be baptized.
I ate piranha for lunch yesterday :/!!! Wasn't the most tasty fish ever but wasn't bad either.
Oh yeah and here is the terrible cake I made for the baptism... haha! It fell apart when we were walking to the chapel.
Remember the family in my branch that named their one dalmatian without spots, Bailey, because I am soooo white compared to the Brazilians here?? hahaha!! Well, I took photos with the puppy (Bailey is the one with fewer spots haha)!!
This week flew by!! Monday (p-day... when we don´t have lunch appts.) a sweet family from another branch made us lunch because they love helping out the missionaries. Then after conference on Saturday they took us out from ice cream/dinner!! It made my whole week :)
Tuesday we had interviews with President Castro/Zone Training. My zone consists of three cities... Itacoatiara, Maués, and Parintins. There is one set of Elders each in Parintins and Maués and you can only travel by boat to those cities. The Elders from Parintins had to take a 12 hour boat ride just to get here for interviews and the training. Maués was a 10 hour boat ride!!! They both said it was terrible and almost barfed multiple times! Since it was a long trip for them, President and Sister Castro bought us all dinner and after the training and interviews we just played a bunch of games. It was such a refreshing day!!
Then Wednesday, our Sister Training Leaders came. Since they have to travel 5 hours by bus from Manaus they stayed until Monday. There are two sets of Sisters here in Itacoatiara so they split the time between us. It was great to have them here because I learned a ton from them!!! Thursday night I taught my first English class at the chapel. I had a great turn out... Let´s just say it is a whole lot harder to teach English than I thought.
Conference was really great!!! I got to watch all the sessions at our chapel. It is crazy to think that last conference I was in the CTM listening with headphones in English because I couldn´t understand yet, but just a few months later I was able to listen in another language. I got some answers that were much needed :) I thought about all of you while I was watching too because I knew you all were doing the exact same thing at the same time.... haha!!
Funny Story of the week: My companion hates any type of insect or bug. Well we always have lizards in our house!! She sat in our hammock on April fools day and I yelled, ``Sister there is a lizard on you!!!!!!`` She literally did a 180 degree flip out of the hammock and landed straight on the tile!! I don´t think I have ever laughed so hard, but now every time we have a lizard she makes me catch it:/ I am sure you all missed me on April fools....it is my favorite day haha. But don´t worry I did my fair share of pranks here :)
I am so grateful for you all!!! Don´t forget to apply all the things you learned in conference:)
PS. I can now say see y'all in March and not NEXT March!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!