Elder Clay Green

Elder Clay Green

Monday, June 27, 2016

Week 47 - Tchau Cabanagem/Olá Marambaia


So this was an eventful week. Started off normal then we went to the District meeting on Wednesday and the President was there and we got some sad news. Our dear Cabanagem Zone has been done away with because our mission is sending more missionaries home than we are receiving. So we have a bunch of zones that have few missionaries. The Church says that each zone needs 18 to 24 missionaries, and all of our zones have 12 or 14. So the Cabanagem Zone was the best to get rid of because it is in the middle of a bunch of other zones so it was easy for it to become part of other zones. It was sad because our zone has been doing really good. Our zone has been 1st in the mission 3 months in a row now. We had a little farewell party. We made a really cool t-shirt and everything. It was sad to say goodbye to everyone!

Then transfers were this week. Me and my companion stayed together and we were transferred to Marambaia. That was the zone leaders old area but they both went to Marabá so we jumped over to their area. We are in the same stake as before like five minutes down the road. So we just moved to another ward and the Cabanagem Ward no longer has elders just sisters. This is our first day and it's going to be hard at first because we don't know anything or anyone. But it's going to be good. We are excited to be here and to be part of the Zone Entrocamento.

So we had a baptism that was really firm for this past week - the contact I talked about last week. She has cancer but it isn't too serious yet. We went to her house Saturday afternoon and she was all excited for her baptism. So we said that we would pass by her house at 6:30 to walk with her to the church. When we went back at 6:30 her mom told us that she got really sick and was hurting a lot, so a neighbor took her to the hospital. And as of Sunday she hadn't returned home. So that was really sad. But I hope she gets better and that the sisters in Cabanagem can help her get baptized.

So this was a week of miracles in our zone. We were short 10 baptisms to reach our goal for this month, and our zone baptized 10 people! Guess how many baptismal interviews I did this past week? 9!! I was hardly in my area the whole week. But we were very happy that our zone was able to help these people and that the Lord blessed us for our hard work. We were joking and said that the Cabanagem Zone didn't die, it was translated! 

The picture in the hammocks is me and Elder Romero in our last exchange. He went to be a zone leader in Santarem. He is from Mexico and when I get home we're all going to visit him and stay with his family! The other picture is our ward mission leader and his family. 

Well thats about it for this week. Love Yall

Elder Green

Hard to say goodbye to Cleo Carvalho who has been so good to these elders! But they've got their game faces (and Alabama Crimson Tide shirts) on!!!


Monday, June 20, 2016

Week 46 - A busy week in Cabanagem

 This shirt is a gift from Elder Steindorf's family!

Elder Steindorf representing for the Crimson Tide!

Clay's birthday package arrived 3 weeks early!

A Father's Day Surprise Picture!


So this was a good week for us. We had a cool experience with a lady we met a few weeks ago when we were having a really tough day and then we said a prayer and started knocking doors, I think I told y'all about that. Well the lady that we found is progressing super good! She is preparing for baptism this Saturday. She has a pretty tough life. She is an older lady and lives with her daughter (who is special needs) and her mom who has 86 years. And her son. They live in a very small house. She has trouble sleeping because her son is almost never at home. He is in his thirties and has problems with drugs and what not. He doesn't work so he started taking stuff from their house and selling it at a flea market so he could buy his drugs. He sold their tv her pots and pans and even their food. Now when she buys food and what not she leaves it at her neighbors house until she needs it. I try to imagine her life and I can't. But she is always so cheerful and she is real excited about the gospel. She was looking for a church that would help her feel better. And the Lord sent us there to help her. 

So let me tell you about one of the craziest things that has ever happened on my mission. We went to our zone leaders area on Friday to interview one of their investigators that was going to be baptized. We got there and were walking down the street and there was a woman a few blocks up the street. One of the zone leaders said, "Elder Green, I´ll give you $50 if you can make a contact with that woman, or even just shake her hand." The other zone leader then said, "I´ll throw in another $50 if you can at least shake her hand." So you know me. I'm thinking these guys are nuts! I have done thousands of contacts on my mission surely I can at least shake this woman's hand. So I confidently accepted the challenge and went after this old lady while they stayed at the top of the street watching. She was standing behind a car which was a little strange. So I walked up very calmly and said, "Excuse me". As I said that she closed her umbrella and I was thinking, Uh oh. Then she used the umbrella as a sword and came at me. She screamed, and I quote an exact translation, "Get away from me you vagabond!!!!!" She continued to scream that I was a thief and other things. So I immediately turned and walked back up the street as she kept screaming. When I turned the corner our zone leaders were basically on the ground laughing so hard. So that is definitely an experience I won't forget. And I don't think I'm ready to give up. If I go back to their area this week I will try again;)

So there is a lady that has been coming to church for over a year. She comes every Sunday but does not want to be baptized. When we baptized Ana, this lady told her that she would like to be baptized too. So you know we went to her house this week and talked with her. She is stubborn and a little difficult to deal with. Once she decides something no one can change her mind and she gets mad really easy. So we went and talked very calmly with her and she enjoyed the conversation. After talking a little bit about the church I asked her, "What does God want from you?" She then said that He wants her to be baptized. So I got all excited and invited her to be baptized on the 25th. She then said no. That she will be baptized one day, but it will be on the 11th. She doesn't know which month yet, but it will be on the 11th. So that doesn't make any sense at all!! You can imagine my disappointment. But as I said, she doesn't change her mind for anything. We tried 2 more times to convince her that the 25th would be as good as the 11th but it didn't work. I feel confident that she will be baptized one day - I just wish it was going to be on Saturday...

So I went to the mission office last week and got the box you sent for my birthday. The shirt fits fine. Mom if you want to send me some more pants that would be good. And some beef jerky please.

Well that's about it for this week.

Love Yall!
Elder Green

Alan - a young man in the ward received his mission call to Argentina! 

Translation of an excerpt from Elder Steindorf's email for this week -

Everything happens in the Belem Mission... 

This week was normal. One day we made a contact with a woman on the street and she attacked with an umbrella. Hahaha. And another day we saw a snake on the street. We are working with a woman who has a chance to be baptized on Saturday but nothing is confirmed yet. 4 months on the mission - 20 more and I'll be at home again! Next Sunday is Transfer Sunday and it is likely that I do not get more time with Elder Green but we do not know yet. There are several rumors that we will have major changes this transfer.

Monday, June 13, 2016

Week 45 - Batismo in Cabanagem


So this week was good. We had a meeting in Belém with Brother Holmes - the first counselor in the general young men presidency. It was super good!! The spirit was really strong. It was a little complicated because he was speaking in English and there was a translator. But it was still great! 

Thursday we had 3 baptism interviews to do. So we did a big exchange. I spent a day in Tapanã with Elder Rech. So that was fun.

We had a cool experience this week. Saturday was a very difficult day for us. All the people we had confirmed to go to church said they couldn't make it. All of our appointments were falling through and we just were lost. We hadn't been able to find many new investigators or addresses during the week so we decided to pick a road and just start knocking doors. I was feeling really bad because we have had trouble progressing our investigators lately. We find people and they seem interested but getting them to church is tough so we don't  have very many people preparing for baptism. I was feeling frustrated and confused while I was walking in the street thinking about it. We are working hard and trying to do everything just right, but we just aren't having as much success as we were having before. So we picked this road and said a prayer at the beginning of the road and then started knocking doors. In that hour of knocking doors we found 3 people who are really good. We taught the restoration and they loved it! Our goal is to baptize one of them on the 25th. So that was a cool experience we had.

We had a baptism on Saturday. Ana was baptized and she was SO excited! I really haven't seen anyone with such faith like she has. We taught the word of wisdom and she stopped drinking coffee on the same day. We taught the law of chastity and she told her boyfriend he has to back off. She went to church 2 weeks in a row and couldn't wait for baptism. It was really a miracle and a blessing to find her.

Yesterday was Ward Conference here in Cabanagem and there were a bunch of people at church. It was a really good meeting. The bishop and stake president both gave great talks.

For my next package I don't really need the brown shoes. But maybe you could send some of my Duke shirts and some dollars. Everyone here wants dollars!

That is really about all for this week. 

Love yall!!
Elder Green 

 Clay with Brother Holmes from the General Young Men Presidency
 Clay with Elder B. Silva (former companion)
 Clay with Elder S. Oliveira (former companion)
With Elder Bartoski (roommates at the CTM)
With Elder R. Santos
 Clay with Elder Christensen
With Elder Stephan
With Elder Belo
 Clay with Elder Galindo
 With Elder Nickels
 With Elder Rech
With Elder Romero
 With Elder Fernandez
With Elder Vander Werff

With Elder Alves

Monday, June 6, 2016

Week 44 - A Good Week in Cabanagem

Apparently eating Acai makes him crazy... and apparently 
Elder Steindorf is used to this since he stayed so calm!


So this week was good. We got quite a few things done.

Yall remember that lady I talked about last week whose son is a member? Well she is SUPER firm for baptism this Saturday! She came to the church activity last Wednesday and came to church by herself Sunday. She was inviting everyone at church to her baptism! She is super good. The last lesson we taught her was great. She has a problem with coffee but she promised to stop drinking it. She started crying during the lesson talking about how she felt when she prayed and recieved an answer about the church. To me, an investigator telling us that they recieved  an answer about the church is is better than a baptism. To see a person sincerely search for an answer from God and to recieve it, that is what the mission is all about. It makes me remember the time that I sincerely searched for an answer about the Book of Mormon and the feeling that I felt when I prayed. And thats really why I am here, to help these people feel the same Spirit that I felt and recieve the same blessings that I recieve because of the Gospel. 

So açaí is officially in full gear. Starting in December, açaí isn't as good and super expensive. But this is the best time of the year to grow açaí so everyone is selling it. Lucky for us, we baptized a lady that sells açaí for a living so she gives it to us for FREE!! Oh the blessings.

So this week will be special. We will have a visit from the first counselor in the general young mens presidency. He will talk to us on Wednesday. So that is exciting. My companion asked why the young mens presidency wants to talk to missionaries and I said that he will probably tell us that we aren't real men and we are still a bunch of kids. So thats probably what will happen!! haha

So funny experience last week. We went to another area to do an interview, and as we were coming back we walked along this wall that usually has a bunch of little monkeys. Sometimes we even get to play with them a little bit. But we saw a few and just kept walking. Then I felt something wet hit me. I looked at my hand and pants and had some sort of brown wet substance. So yes, I can officially say that I got pooped on by a monkey in my mission. 

But really, thats about it that happened this week. Next package can you send my fishing hat? I've been wanting that. And more peanutbutter please!

I'll try to send some pictures later!

Love yall!!
Elder Green