Who knew - today is Mother's Day in Brazil too! We were able to talk to Jed for an hour today it was WONDERFUL! We called him at the church house at 3:00 p.m. our time (6:00 p.m. his time) and he answered. It was so great to hear his voice. Well - actually we heard from him yesterday for about 2 1/2 minutes to make sure we had the correct phone number to call him today. It was a bit of a shock to hear him on the other end of the phone when I answered it yesterday afternoon. Abi talked to him first today because she had to go to work this afternoon after the yummy spaghetti dinner Tracy made (my choice I love spaghetti). Then Ben and Annie had a turn. Then Tracy and I each got on a phone and talked for about 40 minutes. Here is a bit of a recap of our conversation...
Language- Jed says he is so grateful that he is understanding just about everything even to the point that he isn't having to consciously translate what he hears already. He says he is still timid to talk but is getting a little more brave every day. His companion is Brazilian and so that helps. They study familiar scriptures and sing familiar hymns in Portuguese to help Jed out. He even says that occasionally there are a few words that he forgets in English already.
Companion - Elder Cordeiro is from Brazil and he goes home next transfer. He is the District Leader in Sao Gabriel. Jed says they get along very well and he is a great missionary. They work really hard. I prayed that Jed would get a great trainer that would know how to work and teach Jed how to the best missionary ever and my prayers were answered. Jed says their area is about 8 miles square and they walk it all. They have a goal of 10 contacts a day to increase their teaching pool. They both are very committed and have a great attitude. In Southern Brazil there is a lot of money and everyone thinks they have everything they need. He said it's a little like teaching here in our ward in Gillette.
The Church in Sao Gabriel - There are two branches in the area. Three sets of missionaries, Jed and Elder Cordeiro and two sets of Sister Missionaries. The Branches are small but they sign up to feed the Elders just like we do here in Gillette. Which brings me to the next topic...
The Food - They eat one meal a day with the members - the noon meal. Jed and Elder Cordeiro and one set of the Sister Missionaries eat together at a members home. He says he and his companion usually skip dinner and work right through. He loves beans and rice and the fruit is so good. They buy lots of magoes each week. He also is developing a taste for Chimarrão. It is made from some kind of dried grass and infused with hot water like you would tea but it is not tea and totally legal. It is quite a process and ritual to prepare and to drink. Google it if you want to know more. Even though it gets pretty cold there are still palm trees and he says everyone has an orange tree. He saw his first Avacado tree. They use avacados in a sweet dessert and put sugar and milk with them. His companion loves it and assures Jed he'll like it too. He hasn't had it yet. The term rodizio (as in Rodizio Grill) comes from Southern Brazil where Jed is and the type of restaurant that you get rodizio is a Chiausciria. Sao Gabriel is the "Capitol" of Chiausciria's. They're are 7-8 really good ones in Sao Gabriel. He is hoping they'll eat at one tomorrow for p-day.
Well there will be an e-mail tomorrow from him so I'll post again tomorrow.
Thanks for the visit!