Brazil Brasilia Mission
Called to Serve
Elder Eric Maughan
July 2006 - July 2008

Letters from Eric
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Eric's itinerary has arrived! He will be flying into the Albany NY airport, arriving at 10:25 am on Wednesday, July 2, 2008. We're excited!!

Lots of new pictures today. Check them out here. (04/28/08)

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POUCH MAIL IS BEING DISCONTINUED FOR ALL MISSIONARIES SERVING IN BRAZIL. All mail must be sent directly to the mission office. (See Contact Information link)

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(Excerpts from e-mail sent on 10/23/2006)

This week was a good one here in Gama, and we did a "troca" [can't remember the English word, but I think it's split] with the zone leaders for 4 days, where I went to gama central with Elder Abrantes. It was a good time, and I learned a lot. We baptized Janaina this week [that's the picture], an 11-year-old whose dad had been baptized two weeks ago. I guess technically it counts as a baptism for me, because I was in the area when she was baptized. I didn't teach her anything, though; all the work had been done before I got there. The only thing I did was sing along with Guns n roses while we were at her house. So, for the record, i've been here for 2 months and, despite the countless hours of gospel and language study, the only piece of information I've shared that led to someone being baptized is the lyrics to "patience" by guns n roses.

I figured out more why I want to serve a mission yesterday, before the baptism. We went to Janiana's house to go with her family to the chapel, and when we got to her house she was in a pretty white dress and her family was all dressed up in collared shirts, nice pants, things like that. Similarly, a few weeks ago, we walked in on a family on Monday night and they were all sitting quietly reading the scriptures as a family. For a community where it seems that everyone is always watching TV and whatever, the contrast was really amazing, and it demonstrated to me that the gospel really does bless people's lives. How her family was dressed or seeing the family reading the scriptures is just one tiny hint of how much people's lives can be changed for the better because of this gospel.

Anyway, that was a really cool experience, I thought. Now i'll answer some of your questions: The language is definitely starting to come easier. I figure I'm fluent, because I can understand everything I say, even though most of the time other people can't. Nah, I've still got a long way to go, but I can understand more or less everything that's happening. I generally talk too fast, which exacerbates [note the SAT vocab word :) ] my accent, so I've got to work on that. I teach about half of the discussion, which I've been doing since I arrived here in the mission field. I'll teach about Christ's ministery when He established His church on the earth, and the apostasy, Elder Fernandes will teach about the restauação, and I'll invite them to be baptized, then we switch roles for the next appointment. We teach the first discussion a lot, so I've got plenty of practice. my typical day: wake 6:30, study and eat until 10:30, walk and teach until 12, lunch!!, walk through the rain and teach until 9, visit the bakery, bed by 10:30. not a whole lot of variation. We work a lot, which I like. And we walk fast everywhere, which is also most excellent.

Thanks for all the love and support and the chocolate and everything else. It's great to hear from you, and good luck with everything! Eric