April 1, 2011
That is awesome! It looks like is was a ton of fun! So, how is everything? Everything here is great. I had more companions get their VISA's. I am now on companion number 6, Elder Perry, which I think might be a record in the MTC. So, that language is going well. I feel like I can teach any lesson, and really, explain any gospel principle to a point where they can at least understand what I am trying to say, although, it is still hard to understand people that are native to Brazil. It is awesome though. I have made huge progress, although sometimes it feels like I am not learning anything, but then I look back and think, wow, I have learned a lot. It is awesome. I still cannot believe that I am speaking another language. It is so cool, and I just never thought that I would, especially after taking my Spanish classes :) So, what else is going on? Everything seems to be running really smoothly. There is absolutely no concept of time. It feels like I have just emailed you, but at the same time, it feels like forever ago. Wierd, I know. Sorry that I was fairly limited to my picture taking, I promise that I do more than take light saber pics. I will try to take more for you. So, yeah, I am studying hard, but the language and the gospel, and both at the same time. Teaching is my favorite thing to do, because I speak way better Portuguese when I am teaching somebody about the gospel, and I know that it is because of the Spirit that is in the room, and I can literally feel it directing me, and prompting me what to say. It is the coolest experience. I did get the package. Thank you all for your letters and everything in the package. Perfect Tony, just the knives that I wanted. Abrigado. Also, thank you so much for the new pics on my SD card! I was hoping that you would do that, and it made my day! I love you all sooo much. I was practicing my Portuguese by talking about my family, and it was so hard to capture my feelings in words, and to describe all of you. You are all so different, but there is that thing that is the same, and I do not know exactly what it is or how to describe, much less in Portuguese, but it was a lot of fun to try. Thank you all. You all look like you are growing up so much already! Anyways, allow me to try to catch you up with everything about VISAs. I am hoping to get my VISA soon. It is has about 4-5 weeks since I did my electronic, which means that it could be anytime. When I receive it, I am allowed a 5 minute phone call home to tell you about flight stuff, say hi, and let you know that I am going down to Brazil. So in other words, I will not be in Brazil without you knowing it mom. No worries. There, I think that you are all caught up now. Thank you for the scriptures dad. It is amazing how much the Book of Mormon and other scriptures talk about missionary work. The book of Mormon is alive. I can feel it talking to me as a missionary, not as a teenager, or one who is preparing for a mission, but as a fulltime missionary. It is an incredible work. I cannot wait to hit the field, but at the same time, I feel like my MTC time is going to fast because there is so much to learn!!! But I know that God will help me, and that I will be able to say enough to invite the real teacher and converter, the Espirito Santo. Wow, sorry, that means Holy Ghost. I am pretty much speaking Portuguese all of the time now. It is so cool! I love this language. I walk around the MTC and hear people speaking Spanish, French, and Italian, and I can understand all of them, especially the gospel vocab, but they have a hard time understanding me. It is really fun. We practice doing contacts with people by walking outside and contacting other missionaries, not matter the language. We just translate for them, but when Spanish, French, or Italian Elders contact us, we can understand everything. IT is unreal! Also, Portuguese is really pretty. I guess that you will have to wait for my 5 min call to see for yourselves, but I love it. I also love reading the Portuguese scriptures, although they are hard to understand. Everything that it tricky in the Portuguese language can be found in the scriptures, but it is awesome because you feel the same and similar feelings of the Spirit, bearing witness that the words are true, and also teaching the significance and principles. I still cannot believe that I am a missionary. I feel way too young, but I know that God knows that I am young, and that he will help me grow to be his servant. I also know that I will never be a profitable servant. King Benjamin teaches that no matter what we do, we will never be profitable servants, because we owe more than we can give, and we can never dent the debt that we owe, because every time that we do that which is good, we just receive more blessings. I am thankful to be his servant, but I also recognize my weakness, and that I do owe all that I aim and all that I have. I will continue to be the best unprofitable servant that I can for the rest of my life.
Okay, I am scrambling to type, and I feel like I am all over the place. I have talked with both Sebring and Jordan. It was awesome seeing them! The might army of Spokane is entering the mission field. They will be great missionaries. I also found out that one of the missionaries that received his VISA, but was in my district, and was even one of my companions is the son of Brain Lloyd, the Stake Pres before Grandpa Lee. His name is Elder Jared Lloyd (at least I think that his first name was Jared). I also ran into Elder (I cannot remember his name right now) who is the grandson of John Kennedy (maybe his name, not sure), Grandpa Jenkinson’s friend with the hooked hand. He was one of Uncle Courtney's young men. Sorry about the forgetting of names. I do not have a lot of time left, so I feel like I am cramming to type as fast as possible. S, that is about it for me.
Sorry that you got left at home Caleb, but I wanted to tell you that I am so proud that you are being baptized. I cannot tell you how important it is. You are making a grown up decision, something that I am going to Brazil to teach people about because it is so important. You are going to be baptized! I will write you more in a letter, but I have to go. I Love all of you, and I am always looking forward to you next letters. I love you all, and I want you to know that I know that this gospel is true, that the church is Christ's church, and that it ahs the same authority that was on the Earth when he established his church, and that we have the opportunity to experience the joy of the fullness of the Gospel today. We are so blessed with these simple truths. I am so grateful for the knowledge that we can be together forever. Families are the most important social unity in the world, and I have the best family on Earth. I love you!
Com muito amor sempre e para sempre
Elder Shane B. Lee