Ari seems to have completely lost interest in the church. We were there yesterday and didn't feel very welcome. Its too bad, he was sooo close to following. But seeing as he became disinterested so fast, it seems like maybe it is better that we didn't baptize him.
Luiz is our number one once again. Lourdes is getting pretty involved in the igreja mundial, and it showed in our last lesson with them. We were talking about the relationship between the Book of Mormon and the Bible, and somehow the topic of tithing came up.
Now, here in Brasil, tithing is the main point of doctrine of the vast majority of evangelical churches (that, and demons). Lourdes always pays tithes and offerings at her church. She started telling us that Luiz is not a very good person or doesn't understand very well because he doesn't pay tithing. When she leaves the church having payed a big offering, she says that Luiz laughs at her. Luiz was like "I know tithing exists, but the problem is that they ask for it at your church."
Basically the doctrine that caught his interest when we first started teaching him was that nobody at the Church of Jesus Christ receives money for their work, and that tithing needs to be payed in secret. Since then he has gained a testimony of the Book of Mormon, he reads it all the time!! We are going there today to try to commit him to baptism. We both feel that he will get baptized, but only when the time is right. So hopefully the time will be right, right now.
The other investigator that I think is really cool is Lourdes. She is about 25 and we found her doing contacts in the street. We taught her the first lesson and she was really excited to go to church. She understood the lesson really well and was really excited to learn about the Book of Mormon. Unfortunately, just like Ana, she is next to impossible to find at home!! But of course we will not give up.
President Leal had a special conference with the zone leaders of the mission. They set goals and made plans for the month of May, which we plan on making the best month in the history of our mission. The goal for baptisms: 386. The plan: OBEDIENCE. I think worldwide the doctrine most preached TO the missionaries is obedience. I did a lot of thinking when I read the letter from President and realized that the reasons that obedience is so important are 1. Salvation, and 2. When we listen to the spirit telling us to stop breaking commandments, we become eligible to receive promptings on things that are more specific (What to teach, who to talk to, where to find elects, which car to buy, etc.) to us in our unique circumstances. So that is something I am trying to do better. Our mission doesn't have a music rule, but I decided to ditch even my Matisyahu and leave just classical and hymns on the ipod. That was a hard thing to do but I know that every little thing I do will help the world be a better place.
Thank you for your thoughts and prayers, at times I feel really depressed when something not fun happens, but I feel that there is always someone helping me continue, not get frustrated, and stay focused.
Love you all