Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Elder Baird is off to Columbus Ohio

Oi Familia, friends, acquaintance, or random people on my blog/email list,
Como vai? I hope everything is going good! Mom and Dad it is so cool that you got iPhones maybe I will just take one of yours when I get back :) Everything here at the MTC is going well! I am really excited to leave and go to Columbus Ohio!! It was such a great week and I shall tell you why!
I had a great birthday here at the MTC actually! It really helped that Mom and Pookie prepared some party favors and cupcakes (Which my district loved by the way). Also we really did not celebrate till thursday cause we were all bummed about not getting our reassignments. But then we really celebrated it by having the whole floor sing me happy birthday! I also got letters/packages from Grandma and Grandpa Robert, Grandma Baird, The Hicken Fam, and I think that is it hopefully I did not miss anyone. Plus I got to hatch new missionaries. And there is ice cream on Wednesday because that is the day that new missionaries come but I told all the new missionaries they were having ice cream cause it was my birthday. All and all it was a good 19th Birthday!
O Homen que pasa esperança:
In portuguese this is basically saying, "The man that gives/passes/speaks hope". This man is name Brother Pinho, he was our sub because our English professor went to Washington. Irmão Pinho is a Brazilian and was born in Brasilia. So we asked him a lot of questions about Brazil and the Portguese language. It helped so much!! But that was not the only amazing thing about him. He also served his mission in Curitiba. So we asked him a bunch of questions about Curitiba (the food, weather, members, language, and much more!). Literally anything and everything he said was hope! The best news and hope is he said that visas are going to start picking up again. He said that visas are slow during fall and winter, but they pick up spring and summer. He made us all so excited to finally get to Brazil! He was so awesome! He also taught so well with the Spirit. He promised us if we only speak Portuguese for the first 2-4 months in Brasil that we would be comfortably fluent with the language. But he said we have to study and speak only Portugese every day.
Skyping Brazilians:
The same day we had Brother Pinho was when we got to skype Brazilians! Elder Forsyth, Elder Merrill and I skyped Irmã Ririe's first comapnion with her husband and father. There was two cool experiences here. First when we got on skype it was very difficult for them to hear us and us to hear them, and one point their video radomly turned off. We thought this was going to be a disaster! Well right when we started to teach them everything worked out. Then we had no more computer troubles. The other cool thing was that I could understand them!!! It gave me hope that I can do this whole language thing! The Lord has been truly blessing me and helping me with the language. 
Talking to President and Sister Nally:
On Sunday night Elder Forsyth and I had the privelage to sit by President and Sister Nally during dinner. It was so fun talking to them and I told them to tell Kaitlyn hello from me! I talked a lot with Sister Nally and we talked about the age change. She said two cool things to me. First she told me that Elder Nelson said that this was the msot amazing announcement in his life. Now remeber he has been alive for some important annoucements.  She also said that the brethern were not expecting this reaction. She said our generation has truly stepped up and answer the call of a Prophet. It was so amazing to talk to her!
Zone Leader:
Well this Sunday Elder Forsyth and I got unassigned as Zone Leader. I loved being Zone Leader because I got to help everyone in the zone and get to know them. But what I loved most about being zone leader was the opportunity I had to work so close with my Branch President, President Hodges. He is one of the most amazing man I have ever met!! I will truly miss him!
Thoughts on Leaving:
I am totally excited and ready to leave. I am of course going to miss the packages from Grandma and Grandpa Roberts and Pookie every week but I am stoked to go. I am really going to miss the moutains though. Utah is so beautiful right now and to think I wont see the mountains for two whole years actually makes me sad! So I made sure to take pictures of them so I can look at them when I fell homesick or sad! They really make me happy!
Book of Mormon:
I don't know if I told you this last week but I finished the Book of Mormon in the celestial room last Tuesday. Guess what?! It is still true! 
Last cool experience for this week! On Thursday we had something called In-Field Orientation. One of the last thing we did was we watched a video of the church's progression since the 1830s. I felt the Spirit during that video on this is an important work. But then on Sunday we had a meeting called the Departure Devotional. In this devotional President Nally called every country/state that missionaries were going to and when your place of mision was called you would stand. While this was going on that same Spirit overwhelmed me. As I sat there seeing everyone stand up, the Spirit testified to me the sacredness and importance of this work. The Lord is truly hastening his work, there is no question about this. Missionaries are pouring into the MTC with about 600-800 each week. There is an excitment like none other concerning missionary work. And the best part about it is this work is not going to slow down or stop. Nothing is going to stop this work. And the longer I am here on my mission the more I grow to love the work and see the importance of it.
I love all of you hope everything is going well. I have to go and finish packing!
Elder Baird
PS. Idk if I need my other suite in Ohio yet Dad. I for sure let you know when I get there.

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Elder Baird's Latest News

Oi Familia,
So much exciting new this week and more to come!
1. An apostle came last Tuesday night! It was Elder Richard G Scott!! He gave one of the most beautiful talks on prayer and receiving revelation I have ever heard! After his talk he gave an Apostolic Blessing to us and he hit a lot on the language missionaries. Any worry I had is gone as long as I am working diligently to learn. Then after he was done we sang a closing song and as the Sister missionary was walking up to the stand to pray, Elder Scott went to the podium again. He again reassured us by saying "The Lord has called you to succeed not to fail! He will not abandon you! Remember you have been called and will fit the task!" But the most spiritual part for me was before his talk. I wrote in my journal, "While singing prelude the doors opened and walking through came President and Sister Nally and behind them came Elder Richard G Scott. As I saw his face I immediately rose to my feet. Then came the Spirit overwhelming me. I knew at that moment that I had another witness that he is an apostle of the Lord. His wave and happiness even more testified this man is a man of God. That feeling I had is something I cannot deny!"
2. I have had the opportunity to participate in first time occurances here at the MTC. I participated in the whole campus wide passing of the sacrament on Easter. Last Wednesday I helped in welcoming missionaries on the first Wednesday that there was more Sisters then Elders. I found out on Sunday in one of my meetings that for the first time ever there is a 50/50 ratio between Elders and Sisters. Lastly this Friday I get to participate in the first skype TRC. (TRC is where we teach members and RMs volunteers.) Well on Friday we will be the first district to do TRC Skype. And guess who we are going to skype!?!?!? BRAZILIANS IN BRAZIL!!!!!!!!!
3. Tomorrow or Thursday I will find out about reassignments/visa. There was quiet a few visas today. Elder Merrill one of my favorite elders here got his visa!!! We were hoping to get reassigned together so I guess I just have to get my visa in the next few days. A few went through Houston which is a good sign for me! Also the rumor is that the man in charge of Brazilian visas was here on Wednesday. But I hope if I do get reassigned it comes tomorrow so it can be a nice Birthday present.
Well the MTC is awesome, but I can't wait to leave! The time here has flown by so fast! Last week I got to hatch new missionaries and tomorrow I get to do it again. So I am going to try to find Richie tomorrow. I got 2 packages from Marie consisting of delicious homemade bread and crack-carmel desserts! I love her!! I got a package from grandma too which was awesome!!! Also they recently changed who you can email which is fun! Being Zone Leader is fun! Comes with more responsiblity but they are fun. For example I get to do orientation with the new missionaries in our district the next two days with THE Sister Jen Bergloff and classy Elder Forsyth! The language is going well and Elder Shaw says hey! 
Well I am doing awesome! Hope you are doing so well!! Love you all!!
Elder Baird

Sunday, April 21, 2013

Elder Baird's Newest Letter

Oi Familia!
So to start off the person that won the "Who did Elder Baird see this week" is Uncle WIlford!!!! I saw him this morning at the temple. I was so excited to see him! It is a weird feeling to see a familiar face.
Questions from Dear Elders:
I have heard nothing. Apparently the consulate to go through is the San Francisco one. Many people that are getting their visas went through that consulate. I will officially hear an update next Wednesday. That is when I will also get my reassignment if I don't have my visa or if my visa is almost done.
It is coming along great! I just don't worry and stress about it, I let the Lord give it to me in His own due time. I cam focusing more on the language of the Spirit as I finish up the Book of Mormon this week.
Food? Fat?
I am actually getting used to the food! Also I am not fat.................. yet.
This week was a great as all the other weeks have been here. Every day I am learning more about the language and more about the gospel. This past Sunday Elder Forsyth and I were made Zone Leaders so that is fun. Also this past Sunday I got to play the musical number. The hardest thing for me right now is not being able to play the piano for hours each day. So needless to say I take every opportunity I can to play. Also we committed our pesquisador (investigator) to baptism. It's our English investigator and he is our teacher but still it is pretty cool!
Tomorrow marks week 4! It is crazy to think I only have about 2 more weeks here then I am off to teaching real investigators. Tomorrow is also an amazing day because our district gets to be hosts. Meaning we get to be the missionaries that hatch the new missionaries into the MTC. We will be the missionaries that grab the new ones from the curb to start their MTC experience. Also tomorrow Elder F. and I get to be in an activity called "How to begin Teaching" where we kind of model to the new missionaries how to teach.
I can't believe that you got another car!! So cool though and really smart economically! Bailey, have fun at college and don't drive your roommates to crazy.
One quick sorry. There is an Elder here named Elder Law. I don't know his companions name but for the sake of the story he is Elder Smith. I have never met these elders, I have only seen them. Now a few things about Elder Law he is about 5'5", he has black hair, and he is blind. I believe if there is one person in this world that has amazing faith it is Elder Law. He had faith to go on a mission while blind.  But that is not all. Elder Smith is the perfect example of Christ. Whenever I see these two elders walking around campus Elder Smith has his had placed on Elder Law's far shoulder guiding him. Elder Smith also at meal times guides Elder Law to his seat, gets Elder Law's meal, then goes and get his own. Every time I see these two amazing missionaries walking I think of how we are blind. I think of myself as Elder Law not knowing what is going to happen while walking through this life. I think of Elder Smith as the Savior. The Savior is there with his hand upon our shoulder guiding us. He can do that because He knows and has been through all that we will have to endure in this life.
Espero que voces estaejam bem. Amo voces!!!
Elder Baird

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Elder Baird Writes Again :)

Oi Familia,
HAPPY BIRTHDAY MOM!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! So something to make you feel a little young is that a sister in my district has a older sister is older than you! So you are really young!!
So I heard you got a new car! That is so cool! Although I am going to kinda miss the white Hyundai! There are some great high school memories in that car! Oh well! I bet you are loving the birthday present mom.
So conference was awesome!! Who was my favorite speaker? You guessed it Elder Holland! I love how the Lord works and his tender mercies. The small tender mercies of the Lord help grow a big solid testimony. I had some questions I desired to have answered in conference. Not only did the Lord answer them, He answered them in one talk through my favorite apostle! It was a true testament to me of how much the Lord cares and how much he cares about the little things! Fan the flame of your faith!
So I am love reading the Book of Mormon at a faster pace! So I started it over when President Hodges asked us to that first Thursday. Then that first Sunday we watched a talk by Elder Bednard. He said that for every question or principle you what to know read the entire Book of Mormon. So I started over again that first Sunday to learn more about the Atonement. I only have 100ish pages left. Then I am going to start again to learn more about faith. Y'all should try it some time! I love reading the Book of Mormon like this. It is all I can think about haha I get excited every time to read more even though I know what is coming next. 
So packages this week: I got again my favorite crackers with goldfish and candy from Grandma and Grandpa Roberts. Then I got packages from Pookie and Grandma Baird which consisted of candy and homemade bread and Grandma's strawberry jam! All of it was yum!! :) Thank you so much and letters are coming your way today. Also I got an awesome package from the adoptive family (The Hickens) with pictures and cards from the whole gang. The pictures are already hanging up in my room. I loved reading all the cards! :)
I have heard NOTHING about the visa. But my professora did say she heard that they are moving things quicker (Her roommate for the church concerning Brazilian visas). But also you could just call the Brazilian government and bribe them. I have heard that works! 
So some funny stories! So I have a laundry appointment every Tuesday. Elder Forsyth and I do laundry with elders from our district and from the other district (a district that got here the same day and half of them are also going to Curitiba)  also with the sisters from both districts. Three of the sisters from the other district are Sister Bergloff, Sister White and Sister Nelson. In one of their teaching appointments their investigator told them that he was a drug addict. They decided to say I am sorry so they said Desculpa. Little did they know that desculpa does not mean sorry in that context. It means my bad haha. Then another Elder said We have a massage for you instead of message. 
Well life is going good at the MTC! It is so crowded though! The Lord is truly hastening His work! Especially the sisters!! The church is true and the book is blue!

Elder Baird