May 2011-May 2013

Kevin has been called to serve as a missionary of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. He has been assigned to labor in the Brazil Londrina Mission for two years and will be teaching the gospel in the Portuguese language. Kevin will not be using the internet while serving as a missionary. This site will be updated by me, his mom, as I recieve his weekly email letters and pictures. Enjoy!

Monday, December 26, 2011

The Day after Christmas


haha everythings good with me, working hard. im taking my p day today to go downtown to pick up the package that you guys sent and maybe do some shopping. (i was meaning to find something cool to send you guys for christmas but the little town of p didnt have anything) i also want to buy a soccer jersey, the team that i picked up is the team "Flamengo" because everybody here has to choose a team to like.

was really great to hear and see you guys, and im excited to go visit the mission office today for the first time since I arrived, maybe i even have some letters too!

thats it for today, i dont really have anything new to say. i love you all! take care of yourselves and SHARE THE GOSPEL WITH YOUR FRIENDS! i know that the only way to receive exaltation is to be baptized and endure to the end in the church of Jesus Christ

love you all!
-Elder Leete

Monday, December 19, 2011

Transfer for Christmas


I just got the news that I will be transferred tomorrow to Londrina! I'm excited to get to know a new city!  I will also be able to email you guys this Thursday to tell you if the skype time changes, but I'm excited for 7pm on Sunday!


I haven't gotten the package yet, but im excited because this next transfer I will be in L so I will get packages and letters way faster!

Christmas in Brazil is similar, everybody gives presents and stuff, but it really is just an excuse to drink and have a big party and barbeque. It's also interesting that they don't do stockings, because no houses here have chimneys.
We had our zone conference de Natal (Christmas) on Friday, it was really great, I really love my mission president, Presidente Tavares, I have a really strong testimony that he was called of God to be the mission president here now.

I'm sad to leave P, I really have learned a lot from being in a small little branch, especially from the branch president. He is an excellent example of how to be a leader in the church.

I'm learning a lot about the organization of the church, and a lot about the program MLS that the church uses. I bet dad is really familiar with it by now being the secretary (or clerk, i forget which. its the same word in portuguese).

I love you all! Feliz Natal! I gotta  pack all my bags for tomorrow!

-Elder Leete
My District: elder G, Elder C, and Elder E
Yeah its just the four of us.

The church in P, it's a rented house with a big room in the back for Sacrament meetings

Monday, December 12, 2011

Hot all the Time - I miss being Cold


BATISMO!

The son of a member was baptized this week. we taught him like last month but he didn’t want anything to hear more but he has been going to church and has been liking it a lot so he got baptized!

I’m doing great here in P, it still doesn’t feel like Christmas though, it’s just really hot all the time. for us the transfers are on the19th, so I don’t know if i will stay here for Christmas or not. if i stay we will be in the house of the branch president, we just need to buy a webcam for him to use but it shouldn’t be too expensive. I don’t know where dad put my word document where i wrote all my account information, but i think I gave it to Rebecca too when i gave her all our photos so maybe ask her. What’s the time difference between us? i can skype in the evening here if you want

I’m sad that everyone over there is sick, but I’m also jealous because it means that it’s because of the cold. I miss being cold.

I got more letters from Jessica and Melissa this week. Also elder C got one from Melissa and one from the laurels. i had to translate it for him. it was his first letter from an American

Have fun with Christmas stuff, love you all,
-Elder Leete

Batismo




In some of the parks here they have trampoline like things



eu e Elder C, Bonitos demais!

Monday, December 5, 2011

Weird Hot Christmas Season

Mon 12/5/2011 5:19 AM
This gets weirder and weirder as we get into the Christmas season and it just gets hotter and hotter here. My face even finally got sunburned. We are going to buy a little fake Christmas tree so maybe that will help.

The work is going along great here, we are going to baptize the son of one of the members, we taught him about a month ago, but he didn’t want anything more, but this past week he prayed and received an answer and now wants to be baptized!!

Once again I don’t really have anything to write. . . I’m praying for you guys every day and hope you all get better soon.

I’ve got like a half hour left of my comp time so I’m gonna try to send some pictures that I’ve been hoarding

love you all,
-Elder leete

Mon 12/5/2011 5:46 AM
I made French Toast!

A hammock that a member gave me last week - it lasted about ten minutes

(From the mom -editor- this picture is too gross so I'm not posting it. Silly boys.)
A frog we found in the road!

Also on Natal (Christmas) I can skype you guys!!! So make sure that is all up and working. I can skype for only 40 minutes.


thanks
-Elder Leete

Monday, November 28, 2011

Really Terrible Tan Lines


Mon 11/28/2011 5:26 AM
It’s so weird to see that Thanksgiving has already passed, i didn’t realize it was Thanksgiving this Thursday until my American zone leader called me to say Happy Thanksgiving.
The weather is getting hotter and the days are getting longer here as we get more and more into summertime, I really hope I get transferred soon back to the state of P, its colder there.

We have been doing a lot of work to update all the information in the church computer system MLS for the people in the branch, and as we´ve been doing so we´ve been finding a lot of less-actives who´ve had changes in their life recently and are ready to hear the messages of the missionaries again.  Some of these people haven’t been contacted by the church in over twenty years! This is why home and visiting teaching is so important, if these good people just had somebody to remind them about and invite them to church maybe their lives could have been completely different.

How are the Wisemans doing? I’ve been meaning to write letters to everybody but whenever I sit down on P-Day to do it I end up sleeping.
Well that’s about it for me, the work is chugging along well, I’m doing well, I really know that Heavenly Father exists because he doesn’t let his poor American missionaries get sunburned, just really terrible tan lines

tchau!
Elder Leete
Mon 11/28/2011 5:30 AM

O I forgot! the halelujah bugs are almost all gone, but we just might have termites in the ceiling. . .

I don’t really have a favorite cookie, as long as its made with love and in abundance
I hope you guys sent my package already! I need something to open on Natal, its like in three weeks!

Love you all!
-Elder Leete

Mon 11/28/2011 5:37 AM
"Parabéns" to all those people who I have missed their birthdays (especially that one from this week)


Mon 11/28/2011 5:47 AM
I remembered to write you about the money ive been spending these past weeks!. this is in Brazilian Real so you guys will have to do the conversion

20,12  groceries 14/11
5,98    dont remember what, probably food 14/11
4,00    more food 24/11
35,99  Showerhead 19/11

in brazil you use a comma instead of point so 20,12 is 20 real and 12 cents
the dates are day/month

most these things should be covered by the money i get from the mission office but we´ve been out because of the move so I’m waiting on getting a reimbursement, so i will keep the money and use it to buy a souvenir or keep it for a reserve or something

thanks!
 -Elder Leete

Monday, November 21, 2011

Mountain of Letters and Finally Moved In!


Wow this is strange. . .  I didn't even remember that Thanksgiving is this week. Thanksgiving I don't even think is a holiday here, and the Brazilians find an excuse for everything  to have a holiday.

This week I received a mountain of letters, I got 6 from Rebecca and another 6 from the family. (Sorry Melissa I haven't been responding to your letters. . . P-day always runs out way too fast) and two packages! Thanks everybody for that reunion shirt and mom for the ties.
This past week me and Elder C finally moved into our house! It took like three days. One day to clean the house of the neighboring city where we took all the furniture, one day to clean our new empty house, and one day to do the move. But I'm happy now that we have our own house to live, the only problem now is that we still don't have beds or wardrobes to put or clothes (Sister Tavares ordered some for us we are just waiting for them to arrive)

We discovered this week too that our house has a significant amount of bugs. It's a small fly-like thing called an "halleluiah". It lives for a really short period of time and flies around light bulbs, and after a while loses its wings and drops on the floor and crawls like and ant. We have to sweep the floor like twice a day because there is so many of the dropped wings on the ground. They are coming in through the ceiling so we are going to buy like caulk or tape and try to seal up all the holes. I hope it works.

That's about it for my week, since we have our house now in the city we are going to try to proselyte in a different part of the city, all of our investigators are slackers and don't go to church so we have to find some new ones.

Love you all, you are always in my prayers. Keep going forward in the faith. I know that Jesus Christ is our savior and redeemer and that the Book of Mormon is the word of God

com amor,
-Elder Leete
Greenall Reunion T-shirt


Study Room of  New House


Two Bedrooms.  One for us. . .


. . .and one for our suitcases.

Monday, November 14, 2011

Life in the Middle of Nowhere


Life here in the middle of nowhere is going along good. We have been teaching a lot in the ghetto because they listen to us but then don't go to church because they have a mountain of problems, so we are going to try to teach in a slightly better off part of the city, I hope they don't turn all prideful on us.

Don't have a house yet, it was for us to get the keys on Tuesday but it turns out its a holiday so the real estate place will not be open. and we are going to have to rent a truck to carry all the furniture over from another city so i can already tell thats going to be a big mess so i think me and elder c are just going to bring our suitcases one by one on the bus with us and maybe our mattresses too and sleep on the floor for a little while longer.

I got a ton of letters and another packet last week during all the transfers, but they are all with the zone leaders so i wont get them until tomorrow for district meeting. its ben like 5 weeks since ive gotten letters so im excited.

Love you all, everything's going along well here. I'm keeping everybody in my prayers especially y´alls health.

tchau

-Elder Leete

Monday, November 7, 2011

No Halloween in Brazil

its weird to see the holidays pass by without doing anything to commemorate them, there isnt a Halloween in brazil

this is the end of another transfer and i learned that me and elder C are going to stay here in p for another. i really hope that we can finally rent that house that we found.

the real estate place is being really annoying, we already won the bid on the house and stuff its just that they have made us redo the paperwork like three times. they finally sent it off to Londrina to get signed by President Tavares so i hope that we can move in this week.

the time is moving by so fast and we do the same things every day so i really dont have anything to say. the work is going forward, and we´ve met some really great people here that i think will get baptized in this coming transfer.

glad to see everybody is doing well i love you all, im going to try to upload some more pictures

-Elder Leete
Me and Elder C




My district here in  P


Monday, October 31, 2011

The Church is True


this week me and elder c baptized again! we found a name of someone that already visited church a few years back and we went to teach her but she didnt want to listen, so we taught her brother! He accepted and got baptized! he has to be the easiest baptism ever, we simply taught him the lessons and invited him to get baptized and he did! he even stopped drinking coffee the day we taught the word of wisdom! no problems whatsoever. he really is one of the Lord´s Elect.

I really do know that this church is true, I learn more and more every day that it is. i know for a fact the the Lord wants me here, in a little po-dunk town in the middle of nowhere in the countryside of Brazil. I know that Mission calls and transfers are run under inspiration of the Lord Jesus Christ because this is his church. if anyone decides not to serve a mission it means that they dont understand that the Lord has a plan for each one of us and that he will put you EXACTLY where you need to be and where other people need you to be to accept the Gospel and have the blessings of exaltation.

I Love you all! this week will make 6 months on the mission for me, time really flies


-Elder Leete 


Answers and Responses

Dad:  "I remember the houses on my mission (Equador). They were typically cement cinderblock covered with a cement-like stuff to make the walls smooth. The windows often had no glass, and to keep people out, they would cement bars into the windows. It sometimes reminded me of prison." 

Kevin: "the houses sound exactly the same, but instead of cement cinderblock its a red brick made with the red dirt here. and usually the windows dont have bars, its the norm here to have a "muro" or wall that surrounds the house and the yard with a big gate so people dont get in."

Q: What do you want in your Christmas package?
A: i don´t know what i want in the Christmas package, more peanut butter is always welcome. i haven´t even used the syrup that i got yet because we don't have any time to make pancakes. maybe ill make some today, or maybe ill save it to use for a branch activity or something like that. Brazilians love maple syrup

i still havnt received those two other small packages that mom sent, but transfers will be next week so i will probably get them then

Dad: Melissa got a letter from your companion. She is writing back. She will also try to get the Laurel class to write back as well, so he should have plenty of letters to read in about a month or so.
Kevin:  hahahah i forgot to say that my comp wrote melissa. He doesn´t speak English so he wrote in portuguese and i translated. This week is the last week of the transfer, so maybe when he gets it he will be with someone else.

Monday, October 24, 2011

More Questions Answered


Questions from mom for the week:  So what is the season there in P? Getting hotter?  Tell us all about your new place and the people there.  Do you go door to door?  What kind of approaches do you use? Do the members feed you?  Any holidays or celebrations?  Where do you do your emailing?

Hi everybody!

another week goes by in p. . . we almost have a house to live in!! we are going to see this week if the papers go through and get approved. i dont see why not, the church is stinking rich and probably has excellent credit

this area is really great, the members are always helping us by giving us references and giving us rides to places and bringing their friends to church

the weather is getting hotter. it will hover around 30 degrees (celcius) on the hotter days, and im not excited for it to get even hotter as we are get more into summer (which is really weird, we will be in the middle of summer while you guys are in winter)

me and Elder C we dont need to go door to door in this area because the members are always giving us references, right now we are teaching family members of members and friends that they brought to church. this is the real way to do missionary work. if your missionaries are knocking on doors it means that the members arent doing their part (that means you guys).

here in brazil the big meal for the day is lunch. ever day we eat a big lunch in the members homes. (not p-day though) lunches will consist of rice and beans with some sort of meat (sausage, beef, chicken, etc.) or spaghetti or lasagna. 

probably much to your content mom i am learning to like spaghetti. not alot, but i will eat it.

the place here is normal, just like P every house here is made with the same red brick covered with cement-like stuff. nobody has carpet, it is either tile or cement floor. a little bit out of the city there is a neighborhood where most of the members live that is quite. . . poor. its interesting to see the condition that some people actually live in. makes me really grateful for what kind of house we have. if anyone from this city saw our house back in oak hills they would think that we are the richest people on earth. there really is a completely different standard of living between here and there. 

but dont worry, the standard for the houses for the missionaries is always high, Sister Tavares (wife of the president) is taking good care of us.

very little people have internet, so we always use lan houses

Brazilians like holidays, so every once in a while they will have one, but they arent really anything special, just an excuse not to work for a day.
 
everything's going good over here, working hard all day. i got a bunch of letters from people, but no more of those small packets of pictures.

got letters from uncle jon, uncle jim, my roommate from college who is serving in Germany, the other that is waiting for his call in Virginia, the Taylors, the Youngs, the primary kids, Melissa, and a few more that i´m forgetting.

thank you all so much for the letters! it is especially great to hear from everybody!

I´m completely weirded out that Blair is coming home soon, and that i´ve almost been in the feild six months! time flies!

i love you all!

Monday, October 17, 2011

Birthday Week and Area Info

Answers to Mom’s Questions

1)      Did you find a place to live?

not yet, there are little to no houses in this city that are up for rent, so we have been living in the big city of B on the floor of some missionaries there (don’t worry mom we have mattresses). We ride the bus for 40 minutes each way to get here in P. Today we are spending p day looking for houses so that we can show them to President and Sister Tavares when they come to B for Zone conference tomorrow.


2)      Where do you get stuff for the place (Beds, etc?)

A missionary area closed in a city nearby so we will get all the furniture and stuff from that house


3)      How many people in your branch?

4)      How many attend each week?

There´s gotta be something like 150 members registered but we have about and attendance of 45 (it got a boost because we baptized that family)


5)      How many missionaries in your city?

Me and my comp are the only missionaries in the city of P, but B probably has like a good 8 companionships


6)      How was your birthday?

My birthday was good, had a great church meeting and did proselyting like normal; my companion made me a cake of bread slices, peanut butter, and sweetened condensed milk. Was pretty great


7)      Any more packages get there?


We only receive letters when we have contact with the mission office in Londrina (transfers, interviews with president, zone conferences, when our ZL´s go to their training meetings) we have a zone conference tomorrow so I should get something

We had like different 6 people that were almost baptized this week. 4 of them their parents wouldn’t let them (they are under 18) and two said "we aren’t ready yet". 90% of people here believe that you have to be a saint to be baptized, so they say that their kids aren’t ready because they do stupid kid stuff sometimes and they themselves say they aren’t ready because they aren’t perfect people yet. They don’t understand that you NEED baptism and the gift of the Holy Ghost TO REPENT, TO HELP YOU CHANGE, you don’t need to be and you won’t be perfect before baptism.

But we will work hard this week; at least one of these people will get baptized.

Love you all! Thank you so much for the birthday cards! Keep me updated on how everybody is doing!

- Elder Leete
My cake Elder C made for me


Me eating my cake



Meu companhiero bonitao

Monday, October 10, 2011

4 Baptisms!




WE HAD 4 BAPTISMS ON SATURDAY!

A family that has been taught by the members before we arrived and a mom of a recent convert. all we really had to do was invite them to be baptized with power and accompany them preparing. só agua nesse pó.

When we showed up the baptismal font was dirty so me and Elder C had to roll up our sleeves and pants and clean it, then fill it with a hose and buckets. our district leader (elder N, he´s from just south of Beaverton) and his comp helped too when he came early to do the baptismal interviews.

We received a lot more references from members this week too that already went to church a few times, so i know we can find more people to baptize this week.

(answers to mail questions)
I only have received one packet of pictures with the family pictures at the reunion 2 weeks ago and last week got the package with the Maple syrup, Peanut butter, and brownie mix.

i also got a bunch of letters that say "don't open until your birthday" so I'm assuming that was a FHE activity and they were all sent at the same time

we only receive letters
-once a month when the zone leaders go to a leadership training in Londrina where they get all the letters for the people in their zone,

-when we have transfers every six weeks where everyone gets mixed around so at least somebody passes through Londrina on the way to our city

i usually receive letters at least a month after they were sent, but every once in a while when they hit the timing right with the transfers. it has been as little as two and a half weeks or could be as long as almost two months.


running out of time, i will try to send some photos

love you all!

-Elder Leete


Monday, October 3, 2011

Pederneiras


Elder C



looking for a house

Transfer and New Companion

Great to hear that everyone is alive and well and enjoyed conference!

i´ve been really busy this week with transfers, i´ve been transfered to open a new city that has been closed for almost a year called P, a small town about 40 minutes outside the big city of Bauru in the countryside of the state of São Paulo.

i have a new companion as well, his name is Elder C he is really great and im really excited to get this city up and running again with missionary work

the countryside of the state of são paulo reminds me a lot of the countryside of California, really hot dirt but with the occasional grove of trees,  the state of paraná where i was for the first two transfers was a lot like Oregon a little more south than where we live, less green and hotter but with a good amount of trees

this week we didn't really do a lot of proselyting, we have been combing the city for house to live in. right now we are living in B with other missionaries and are commuting 40 minutes by bus every day to p. but even though we didn't do much we have been visiting people who have been taught by the members of the branch here and we are going to baptize four of them this Saturday! a a couple and one of their kids (they  have 3 more kids but they aren't old enough to be baptized yet) and a mother of a recently converted member

the work will go really well here, the members are excited and like to help us and give us a lot of references

I loved conference as well, I got to watch the priesthood session in Portuguese (understood 90% of it) and the two on Sunday in English (they gathered all the English missionaries in the zone and had another room set aside for us to watch). in português they are dubbed over by live translators.

i Loved the spirit of conference this time around, there were so many powerful testimonies. I liked the one by Jefferey R Holland, the one by Tad Callister about the book of Mormon, and the one by the guy in the presidency of the Sunday school about teaching by the spirit. the book of Mormon and teaching by the spirit are the two most important things for me right now to learn about

I love you all so much, Parabéns Rachel no aniversário!  

i got the letters from the family reunion, the package with the pictures in it, and the letters for my birthday. (dont worry i have not opened any of those letters yet) thanks Everybody! i really appreciate all the letters and support!

it keeps on getting harder and harder to speak in English, i hope that my grammar isnt getting too terrible. . . today i tried to bear my testimony in English and i straight up couldnt do it until after i started talking in english for a while.

Love you all! i will try to send more pictures!

-Elder Leete


Monday, September 12, 2011

one more week for me, dont know where time is going

mais uma semana para mim, não sei onde o tempo está indo

me and elder p have been working hard this week trying to reactivate some of the less active members in our ward, there is a lot of them that live in our area.

other than that we have a couple of people that could get baptized, but it seems that whenever someone gets close they get a fear of commitment and back out.

we have been working more with the book of mormon though, and i hope that our investigators will have the will to read and pray about it, but i think all of like two people on my mission so far actually did this, and me and elder f baptized those people.

im out of stuff to say . . . you guys should send me questions that you want answered.

tchau for now,

elder leete

ps

did i ever tell you guys that my name in portuguese is pronounced leech? the 'te' makes the 'ch' sound. or oftentimes is pronounced laych which is spelt 'leite' which means 'milk'

random comment for the day


Ok question:    What does “mais uma semana para mim, não sei onde o tempo está indo” mean?

Answer:    one more week for me, dont know where time is going



Monday, September 5, 2011

September 5, 2011- Fried Brain

sounds like everything is going well with you all, I'm happy that everything is turning out and settling in well.

i still cant believe how fast the time is flying by, this week was a little slower for us because we are having a hard time finding people who are really interested in the gospel. we can teach a bunch of people one or two lessons, but to nobody wants to actually change their life or even accept little compromissos (i cant remember the word in English) like reading the scriptures or visiting church

my brain is really fried, i can understand most everything in Portuguese (and of course in English) as long as they are talking about a subject with which im familiar with the vocabulary. but if i try to talk in English the stuff that i know really well in Portuguese (missionary stuff)  its really hard. but then again if we are talking about stuff with vocab i don't know then I'm completely lost in Portuguese. i think i can communicate best with the one other American elder in our house, because i can speak half and half.

your new ward plan sounds exactly like something bishop young would do, i bet he has some really cool graphics on a fancy poster board to go with it too.

i love you all! im gonna try to upload some more pictures now

-Élder leete

Some Questions from Mom:

So do you have 4 in your apartment?

Where are they from?

Whatever happened to the little black dog?

Instant Answers (it's nice to be on the computer at the same time!)

6 in my house.

Elders
L, C           zone leaders
F, M          district leader and new greenie
P, Leete     me and my comp

 everyone is Brazilian except me and f

the house is rented and the owners live in another house in the back, he said he gave the dog to his grandson.
first pot of feijão (beans) i made last p-day
Zone
District

Monday, August 29, 2011

August 29, 2011- Still Growing and Happy

hi all!
 once again, its really weird to think everybody is going back to school but im not, im working hard here, we have a couple of candidates for baptism which i hope will happen in the month of September sometime.

i've been on the mission for just about 4 months, which means my mission is 1/6th over, it makes me sad, i'm running out of time to save these souls!

i don't really know what to say more, the work goes on, i'm sunburned and bug-bitten but really happy. i've grown more in the last four months than i thought i could, and i'm growing more and more every day, every time i bear my testimony every day. (which is quite a lot)

i'm praying for you all, and i know you are praying for me.

eu amo vocês

-Elder Leete

P.S. make sure you figure out all the import/export laws of brazil before you send my package, an elder in my district has had to shell out like 200$ worth of fines in the past. make sure you use the us postal service, i heard sending stuff in the pre-sized one price for whatever you can fit in the box is the best

Monday, August 22, 2011

August 22, 2011 New Companion

wow, its already halfway through august, the time is flying really fast.

my new companion Elder P is really cool, not crazy like Elder F but its a nice break. there is also a big difference in accents, he is from the northeast so he pronounces all his "s"s like "sh" and "r"s like "h". its interesting and only leads to confusion every once in a while

we have been working hard to find new investigators, at the start of this new transfer we cut all of the old ones that were not keeping commitments to read and pray about the Book of Mormon and who weren't going to church so we have to start all over again. its sad to see how people can be disinterested in the single most important message they can ever hear, but if they aren't reading and praying or going to church they will never receive a testimony from God and will never get baptized so we just have to find someone else.

it also is really hard when members don't give us references! so as a present to me, I want EVERYONE who reads this letter to write down the name and address of a friend who you would like to see in the celestial kingdom and GIVE IT TO THE MISSIONARIES!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! DO IT!!!!!! you will never ever ever regret it!!!!! us missionaries are wasting our time and your money when we have nobody to teach. there is nothing more frustrating than trying to find people in the street or knocking on doors, it is about half a step up from laying in bed dreaming of teaching lessons to people who really want it

 well that's my little rant for the week, we have one investigator that is progressing and has hope of baptism, we just need to get her to church on Sunday.

all is well here, sickness went away by Tuesday now I just need to remember to not eat fish from Paraguay

love you all!

-Elder Leete


Monday, August 15, 2011

August 15, 2011

another week gone by, everything's going good, we found some more people who really appear like they are ready to hear the gospel.


I would be really jealous but right now I can't even think about going on rollercoasters, I spent last night throwing up and today I'm really happy it is p day so I can sleep. don't worry, its probably just a combination of eating weird things yesterday and not drinking enough water. The weather here really stinks, its winter and its like 90 degrees all the time. walking around all day every day in this heat really gets you. but when it rains here it gets really cold, last week it got down to 30 because it rained for like three days straight, and houses in brazil are built to have just about as much protection from the heat and cold as a cardboard box. last week I was under my one blanket that I have wearing two pairs of pants and my winter coat shivering , and this week I've been sleeping with the fan on full blast with maybe a sheet.


but that's the life here, ill get used to the heat eventually, hopefully before summer rolls around. . .


this week was the last week of the transfer and tomorrow I'm getting a new Brazilian companion, Elder P. I'm staying here in M  and Elder F is getting sent to F  to be a zone leader


that's about it for me, i'm going to go back to the house and sleep now


-Elder Leete


fotos dessa semana

me and elder f in flamengo (meu time de futebol) jerseys. I look ridiculously skinny in this picture I don't know why



a puppy that wandered into our house Saturday night, we found him sleeping on elder f´s backpack in our study room. we named him Poopinho, the old guy that owns the house took him, I hope he´s not dead


Monday, August 8, 2011

August 8, 2011

this week makes six weeks in the field, wow that went fast
 
since I arrived one week early for transfers this means that this week is the last week of the transfer, so me and Elder F have to work really hard to get another baptism before he gets transferred out of the area (this was his third transfer here so he is probably going to get moved)
 
this past week we saw some crazy stuff, people praying for an answer if they should listen to us then immediately opening up the bible and opening to a random scripture and having it fit exactly with our message and responding to their question. this happened with two different people this past week, and now we just got to get them to pray and have faith to follow their response. but the absolute hardest thing is to get people to go to church! everybody has an excuse! its really frustrating
 
my testimony is strengthened every day, I absolutely know that this church is true. there is no other explanation for, well, EVERYTHING!

love you all!
-Elder Leete
 
photos for today:
 Elder F in his snazzy white baptism outfit. he found the pants in the house we live in and he sewed them to fit him. beware my sisters: he is finishing the mission in November and i gave him permission already to go to the states and try to marry one of you
 
Me and Elder F and L who we baptized last week
 
our "mesa de estudo" i bet you can guess which part is mine



 

Monday, August 1, 2011

Aug 1, 2011

BATISMO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
the beginning of this past week we didn't have anyone to baptize, but trusting in the training we got in our zone conference the week before we set out to see a miracle happen. on Tuesday, we were talking to a couple of girls that my companion Elder F baptized last month, and while we were talking their brother appeared. jokingly, we asked if he was excited to get baptized this weekend, he is shy so he kind of laughed it off then their mother appeared, (she is not a member) and we told her that he is going to be baptized this Saturday, and she said "that's wonderful! you are the only one of my kids that are not baptized yet! and its your birthday this week too what a great present to get!" after this we turned to him and asked if he was gonna get baptized this Saturday and he said yes! MILAGRE!!
this week we spent teaching him and he really is one of the elect, no problems with any of the commandments and really understands well the savior´s role in our lives, and notwithstanding his shyness  he was excited to be baptized and get integrated in the young men's program (he is 17)
this week was another crazy week for the mission as a whole, the goal this month was to baptize more people than the mission ever has in a single month, and we accomplished it! 150 baptisms! 2 of them were me and Elder F´s!
that is really all that happened this week, we have been working in a slightly richer neighborhood this week so lessons are harder to teach. that's okay though.
  
Love you all! have a great reunion! say hi to all the extended family for me
-Elder Leete
 p.s. I forgot my camera cord, you guys will get a picture of the baptism next week

Monday, July 25, 2011

weekly letter 25 de julho

hey all! p day again, I can´t believe how fast this is going, it seems like I blink and the week is gone. on p days we wake up and do our normal schedule of study then go to the super mufato (equivalent of Safeway) and buy food for the week. today I bought bread, bologna, and cheese for breakfast and dinner sandwiches along with milk, bananas, and crackers for snacks. I'm really glad we eat in members´ homes every day for a big lunch, otherwise I have no idea what I would eat. after shopping we head to a lan house to use the computers, its something like 1.50 USD to use the computer for an hour. 

this week has been a week of miracles in my zone, we had something like 7 baptisms yesterday and Saturday. I had my first zone conference this past Thursday which was really great, I really love my mission president, he is truly inspired.

 the lesson that we have really heard is that there are lots of people that are prepared to be baptized, who have already gone to church a few times but just nobody invited them to be baptized. these people are family members of less active members and recent converts and old investigators in the area book.

 the field is truly ready to harvest, the hard part is finding those people that are ready. because when you find a person that is ready they will accept the gospel and get baptized in a few weeks.

 me and my comp made the mistake of trying to teach people that really don't have the will to change, they like the lessons and talking about God and we have great spiritual lessons, but they don't read and they don't pray to know if these things are true, we found that if these people don't accept our challenges to read or pray, then they simply won´t progress and its a better idea just to stop visiting them.

 I'm glad I'm learning these things now early in the mission, I see a lot of people that have 10 months or a year and have very little baptisms because they made this mistake to waste time on people who don't have the will to change.

 well, that's about it for this week, have fun at the reunion everyone, you should guilt all the cousins into writing me or something :)

 tchau

-Elder Leete

Monday, July 18, 2011

Random Pictures

My two comps at the CTM

Roommates at the CTM

Brazilian district at the CTM

Me and CTM President

Brazilian Comp at CTM

American District at CTM
Me, my two comps: Elders S and B, and Instructor

July 18, 2011

looks like my email from last week didn't get sent, sorry everybody just sent it now.

the time here is really weird, it feels like I just had a p day yesterday and here I am sending another email. I still haven't quite come to realize that I'm going to be here for another 22 months, I guess that's just kind of how it goes with me, I wont get really excited until like my last transfer, then I will blink and I will be home again.

this week has been a little frustrating, we taught a lot of people and had high hopes for this past Sunday to bring a lot of people to church. it was ´domingo do amigo´ so everyone in the ward was supposed to bring a friend, but just about nobody did and of the 10ish investigators that we invited and said for sure they would come only one showed up. we even had a big ward party the night before and there were lots of investigators there, but nobody went to church. its pretty easy to get discouraged after something like this happens but right after we just went back to work and went to a baptism because my comp had to do the interview (he is the district leader). baptisms are really great, you can always feel the spirit there really strongly.

everything is going well with me, a little jealous of you guys because you get to relax and stuff. the two biggest things i miss are the ability to drive a car everywhere instead of walk and being able to just be lazy and sit around. cant really do either here. everything's all good though, it makes the time fly by.

hope everyone is enjoying their summer vacation! Love you all!


 -Elder Leete

2 pictures at the ward party (was a traditional caipira -cowboy- theme). one of me and my comp Elder F and one of the zone leaders elder f and elder l






July 11, 2011

hi everybody! seems like everyone is doing all right, enjoying the summer. 
the weather here is the most annoying thing ever here, last week was freezing and rainy but the last few days have been incredibly hot and sunny. I'm not excited for when the summer comes and it will be even hotter and more humid than this. 

other than that everything is good with me, we have a couple of families we are teaching that seem really excited about the gospel who we are hopeful to baptize. I've learned that the hardest thing is to get people to come to church! you can really tell between the investigators that are really interested or not by who goes to church.

I don't know what else to say, was cool to hear your missionary story, here we get lunch every day from a member, and barely enough allowance from the mission to buy stuff for breakfast and dinner, but i never am hungry really, because the lunches are quite substantial. I love the food here, I probably will get tired of rice and beans in a year or so, but as of now I'm loving it.

I gave my first talk in sacrament meeting yesterday, was a little scary but was good.

gonna attach some more fotos (oops i meant photos)

love you all
Elder Leete



Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Kevin's Missionary Scripture

Docrine and Covenants 100:5-8
5 Therefore, verily I say unto you, lift up your voices unto this people; speak the thoughts that I shall put into your hearts, and you shall not be confounded before men;

6 For it shall be given you in the very hour, yea, in the very moment, what ye shall say.

7 But a commandment I give unto you, that ye shall declare whatsoever thing ye declare in my name, in solemnity of heart, in the spirit of meekness, in all things.

8 And I give unto you this promise, that inasmuch as ye do this the Holy Ghost shall be shed forth in bearing record unto all things whatsoever ye shall say.

Monday, July 4, 2011

In the Mission Field


this  past  week has been crazy! last Tuesday I woke up early to  go to the airport and travelled alone to the mission. when i got to the Londrina airport I was welcomed by president and sister t and the APs. I spent the morning in the mission office being oriented and waiting for my trainer elder F. Elder F  is awesome! we chatted a little (in  Portuguese only, he doesn't speak English ) and went out to do contacts on the street.  I'm  still not used to doing contacts, it feels weird to me to just walk up to someone and start sharing the gospel. I'm getting over it though.  I find that I am able to speak the language well,  just as well as anyone here that has been out for six months already so it is a real blessing to me. I am already able to teach full lessons. the hard part is listening,  every person has a different accent and uses a lot of slang and stuff.

after a few hours we took a bus to my first area in the city of M  my area is the Centro c B area. the area I'm in is a lot like Oregon, is very green but just has different types of plants and trees. its in the middle of winter now, and like Oregon in the middle of winter it rains a lot.  it has rained every day since I've been here, and since I'm out walking in it all day I've had a cold for like the past five days. lots of coughing and sneezing but its all good. my area  is in the poorer parts outside the city, most of it is paved. the poorest part in my area, T, is a completely red clay dirt and like two room brick or wood houses. because of the rain, this area turned in to mud and I think dyed my shoes a little red. but its all good, my shoes always kept my feet dry.

the best proselyting is in the t area because everyone is really humble and has an honest desire to come closer to Christ. in most of my  area   (and in  all of brazil outside the major cities) you can walk up to anyone and ask if they would like us to come by their house later and share a message about Christ and 80%  will say yes.  this people truly are something special and the field is truly white ready to harvest.

in my  house live  6  missionaries. me, Elder F,  Elders B  and  Fr and Elders C and F. Elder C is finishing his mission today and either Elder B or elder F are going to get transferred tomorrow. They are all great guys and excellent missionaries, Elders c and F are the zone leaders and  my comp elder f is the district leader.  the work is really tiring here, walking all day , every day nonstop. the food is either delicious or nothing, we have lunch in a different member´s  home every day  and usually we don t eat much more than crackers or a sandwich  for breakfast and dinner.

 I Had my first Baptism yesterday! a woman that elder f and his past companions were teaching got baptized  she thought it would be cool  to have an American do it so I did. I only taught her once or twice this  past week but it was cool. we have a couple more investigators lined up for the next couple of weeks so I'm excited

the  work is great! just really tiring! but I'm safe  and have a great trainer so I think we are going to really do some great things in the area that hasn't had much success in the past few months

I love you  all!   good luck with your summers! just remember your poor freezing missionary  down here in the winter!

-Elder Leete

the attached foto is of me, Elder F (left) and I Q(middle) a guy  from the city that was serving a mini-mission to fill the spot of Elder F´s old companion who went  home early. Elder F has had three companions in the past month so he is glad to have me arrive and be more  permanent.
 
PS here all mail  goes through the mission home in Londrina which is an hour away and so  we only get it like once a month or less when the zone leaders have to g o there for meetings so expect a long delay

Friday, June 24, 2011

Last week in the CTM

(Jennifer wrote Kevin this week as the girls and I were at YW Camp and Brian was off in Montana visiting his dad. The letter she wrote can be found on our family blog:  leetefamily.blogspot.com). The following is the reply she recieved:

I think that the last time i saw him (Grandpa Leete) was like when i was twelve or fourteen. that limeade is definately brazilian, they love sweetened condensed milk in anything. it makes me happy that you are having fun in college, good luck with your BFA portfolio (but you dont need it, your stuff is really good).  My brasilian district is fun, i can understand almost everything if i pay attention, the hard part is paying attention all day, you get tired of not being able to communicate easily all day, I love sitting next to americans at lunch so my brain can take a break. my companion is from Acre, a state in the north of brazil, and so his skin is always cracking because of how "cold" and "dry" it is here. (its winter here and the weather is pretty much the same as Oregon in the summertime but with twice the humidity). This is my last 5 days here, i leave for Londrina on terça-feira(tuesday) early in the morning. today is one of Brasil´s random holidays, so the post office is closed so i cant send any letters, sorry everybody. I dont really know what else to say, no exciting stories this week, just lots of good little experiences in my classes learning how to teach. im really excited to get out into the feild, im starting to get impatient. but im also a little nervious, just like anyone is of the unknown. I Love you all, im headed to the outside world to see if any stores are open.  I Love you! write you again next week!

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Being in a Braizilian District is really Great

On Thu, Jun 16, 2011 at 4:43 PM, Kevin Leete  wrote:



Its really weird to think that jessica is off and graduated! even weirder to think she will be ahead of me in school by the time i get back. . .  being in a brazilian district is really great, i can understand almost all of class, the hard part is talking with my new companion and people in my district. none of them speak english, so its frustrating sometimes, but its not bad. today was a crazy p day (my P day is now thursday) because two out of the five people in my district (yes another really small district for me) went through the temple for the fist time so we spent two or three extra hours there. i just got back from running outside to buy soap and now my P day ends in half an hour, so sorry to everybody (eXpecially you Rebecca) i cant write any letters this week.  i got jennifers letters yesterday and mom and melissa´s on monday, i love hearing from you guys and promise to get you all next week. also, next week is my last full week at the CTM so start sending stuff to my mission address, i think mom has it. Also, im almost out of cash so i was wondering if my card is set up to work with me in brazil, i will only use it if i have to, but i dont know if it will even work down here.  whew, im out of stuff to say, i need to sleep, my brain is fried from going to the temple entirely in portuguese. Oh yeah, the weirdest thing ever, the  sister in my district looks EXACTLY like melissa, except with dark skin and hair. its weird, same exact size, body type, face shape, and hairstyle. i keep having to remind myself that its not her. i love you all, my 30 minutes is up again, if mom is not going to send one next week then the next time i will hear from you guys is when in in the field. that is both scary and really exciting to think abouit. i love you all! sorry i couldnt write this week! -Elder Leete ( i still havnt figured out how to make a new paragraph on these stupid CTM computers)