Random Bits and Pieces

Another hour on the computer that passed way too quickly:
More miracles! The sisters were teaching a man who was preparing to get baptized on Saturday. Friday, they realized that he lives on our side of the river, so technically he’s part of our branch. So, also technically, this ended up being our baptism. But the sisters were really good sports about it!

I think lots of Elders would not have so easily passed a baptism to another area like that. But our zone is pretty well knit, and we’re all working hard to hit our goal as a zone, so that spirit of unity helps also! Yup our zone is pretty awesome! We are 7 areas, 5 of elders and 2 of sisters. So 14 missonaries in total, for those who haven’t studied math in the past 3 years (like me). We have zone meeting every Tuesday or Wednesday, and we usually end up meeting together on P-day also to play volleyball, card games, or go out to eat together. Some of the sisters designed a zone t-shirt that we’ll be getting today, I’m pretty excited! That’ll be a first for me.

We’ll have to do something really nice for the sisters. We gave them a golden reference last week. That probably better than a cake made in the microwave.

Brazil-Outeiro-101So here’s a family that we’ve been teaching! We found them looking through the Area Book, they were “antigos” investigators. I don’t remember how “antigos” is translated. “Old”, maybe? Well, you get the point. That’s one good way to find new investigators!

Their son got baptized this week. We’re hoping the parents shortly follow his example!

Oh, “former”! That’s the word I’m looking for.

So yeah, remember how I said that we were going bowling last week? Well turns out the bowling alley closes on Monday, not fair! Some of the elders wanted to just drink some açai, but I decided that I hadn’t taken a bus 2 hours to do something I could do by crossing the street from our apartment. So we decided to eat out at Pizza Hut! Haha it was really fun sitting around the table laughing and telling stories and having a good time. Picture of that coming next week!


Coming soon: Belém, PA, Brazil ➔ Albany, NY, USA

Scott-leaving-1278Hard to believe this photo was taken nearly two years ago!

Scott will be completing his mission to Belém, Brazil, next month. He will leave there on the afternoon of July 23rd and will arrive at the Albany Airport more than 20 hours later, at 12:22 pm on Wednesday, July 24th, 2013. We’re so excited to see him!

I don’t believe that’s chocolate

Happy Memorial Day! Which is another holiday that doesn’t exist here… but that’s okay! We’re going to celebrate by going bowling today. Which maybe doesn’t beat a trip down the Mohawk, but should be great!

This past week was great for us here in Outeiro! It started off busy, as we traveled to Icoaraci on Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday for meetings and interviews, but it ended with a great weekend. We were able to find lots of new investigators this past week, and some of them came to church with us also! And a few of these investigators even asked to be baptized, which is what every missionary loves to hear! Unfortunately, there are a few other requirements to be baptized besides just desire, but we’re going to help these people out, and I’m hoping that Junho will be a great, busy month!

What else is new… we’re working with the branch mission leader and the other leaders to implement a new branch mission plan. We presented the plan yesterday after church, and the members seem pretty excited. It’s simple, with good plans and goals for baptisms, retention, and activation. The hard part it just following up… so I’m hoping that we can actually put this plan in action!

Other interesting news: I ate cacau the other day, the plant that makes chocolate. But it didn’t taste at all like chocolate… sweet and tasty none the less! Speaking of chocolate, I’m more or less still addicted… In the bakeries here they sell a type of bread that has chocolate in it, which is really tasty. And cheap! Just 25 cents here. I’ve been learning lots in terms of grocery shopping, one more skill I’d like to carry from my mission! Of course, I’d imagine that grocery shopping (foods/prices) are a little bit different here.

Well, I hope that everyone has a great end of May, and great start to June! I really appreciate the prayers and thoughts of all of you. Amo vocês, obrigado por tudo!

Elder Maughan

Three Pictures are Worth a Lot of Words

Scott didn’t have time to write a long email to everyone today, but he did send a few photos and descriptions:

Brazil-Outeiro-2-6 Brazil-Outeiro-2-7Here are some pics from last P-day, when we went to Icoaraci to spend the day with some of the other missionaries. Thought you might like to see how we spend our P-day occasionally!


So to continue your virtual tour of the chapel, here’s a pic of us in front of the baptismal font! Sorry it’s kinda hard to see… Cleide was baptized there on Saturday, and actually it was the breaking in of the baptismal font also, the first baptism in the branch since the branch moved to this building at the beginning of the year. The members sure seemed excited! There was a good showing at the baptism, some of our investigators came, and some of the members made cake. You know how a church activity works, there has to be food!

Cleide was a lady that we contacted one day in the house of a less active member. We are using that strategy to find other new investigators also! It’s been to be working well, or at least this past week we were able to find a few other investigators with plenty of potential, as we visited the less active members here. And some of the less active members came to church yesterday also! It looks like President Costa’s promise is started to be fulfilled… we’ll have to keep working on the rescuing!

Always an Escape Route


Scott’s set up for his Mothers’ Day Google Hangout.

Hey there again!

It was so great to speak to all of you on Mother’s Day! I really appreciate everyone taking the time to talk to me. Even if it was a struggle for Melissa to stay awake, haha. [She’s a nurse in the middle of working night shifts this week!] Well like you said, there’s not much to say after a long chat yesterday… but I’ll try to think of something interesting!

So I’ve decided that, as missionaries, we have a habit of getting thrown into awkward situations, and then the Spirit helps us to find a way out. While there are certainly plenty of these awkward situations each week, this past week we had one in particular that blew my mind. We went to visit a family that we’ve been teaching (they went with us to church last week) and when we got there, the dad’s brother and sister-in-law (who are more or less pastors from another church) were there to “save” his brother from going down the wrong path, if you catch my drift. My first thoughts: “This’ll be fun!” I said a quick, silent prayer that this lesson would all work out in the end. Not exactly sure what happened or what we said, but after a few minutes of talking we were all agreeing on the same things, laughing, and we managed to take all the contention out of the air. They let us teach about the Restoration, which went great, we could all feel the Spirit, and they accepted a Book of Mormon and promised to read. As we left the house I remember feeling amazing by how much better than awkward situation worked out than it should’ve, and I’m thankful for the role of the Spirit in guiding us in all we do.

So here’s a picture of the inside and the outside of our Outeiro Chapel! As you can see from the outside, unfortunately we don’t have a sign yet. Luckily it’s right beside the lotérica, which I don’t know how to translate… but it’s the only place on the island where you can take out money (there are no banks here) so everyone knows where it is.


Brazil-Outeiro-2-4The photo of the inside was taken at the very front of the chapel, so you can see it’s not too big! But there are a few other small rooms, and there’s a kitchen out back. What would a church building be without a kitchen? Mormons love to eat.

Love you tons, have an incredible week!
Elder Maughan

In case you missed Scott’s Mothers’ Day Call post, click here.

Last Mothers’ Day Call!

Scott-Google-hangout-2013So fun to talk with Scott on Google Hangout from Utah, New York, and Boston! What a great Mothers’ Day treat! Hard to believe this was his last call home. We’ll be seeing him in only 2 1/2 months! Scott’s cousin, David, even joined us for a little while to tell Scott about his recent mission call to Los Angeles, California – Spanish speaking. They’ll get to spend a little time together this summer before David leaves.

Video excerpt coming soon….

We can’t swim, and we don’t have a boat

Dearest family,

Happy May! I’d have to say April passed pretty quickly, that’s for sure. But May started off very well also! And sounds like it’s had a nice start for the rest of the family, so that’s great to hear.

So my new companion is Elder S, he’s from Londrina, Paraná, and he’s been out just 3 months on the mission. But he’s a great, humble, down to earth missionary, and we’ve worked together great this week. I really enjoy his style of teaching, very simple and direct and to the point, while also definitely having the Spirit with him. That makes for shorter lessons (without losing quality!), which makes for more lessons in the week. So this transfer has started off great! Definitely looking forward to continue to learn from him.

Hmmm let me think of other exciting news from this week. Tons of rain! Like I showed in last week’s photo, when it rains it really floods here. There’s one part of the main road here that ends up under 2-3 feet of water when a heavy rainstorm passes, and the only way to get from one side of the city to the other is on a bus or a van. So my poor feet have been soaking wet for a week now, but that’s okay! I’m sure that’ll just make my feet stronger. Some how. Also, thanks for sending the new socks a few months back, that was a very handy care package!

Well, sorry for the short email! But at least we’ll be able to talk a bit more on Mother’s Day, I’ll let you know at least by Saturday. Have a wonderful week, love you all!

Com amor,
Elder Maughan