I do not know about you, but it seems time does not slow down!
We were able to help the Brewers with the remodeling of the church kitchen cabinets/furniture. We were able to get it ready just in time for some more significant events. Each Sunday morning, there has been a "continental breakfast" before Sunday school and a family conference in the evenings. After the conference, there are refreshments available as we hope to encourage families to stay and have a sort of round table discussion.
Portuguese has been coming along well for all of us. I had an opportunity to preach in Ouro Preto for a Sunday night and try my hand again at running Sunday school here in Itapuã. Ashlie is doing a fantastic job of "sneaking in" time throughout the day outside of her class time. Her teacher mentioned that she feels it is not a matter of if she will get the language, but when. Outside of time set aside for church/neighbor kids to come over and play with our kids every week, I have been having the kids go through some beginning courses I have used. From what I have read, one of the major keys to language acquisition is exposure/saturation—meaning hundreds of hours. I have been surprised to learn (because of all the sentiments to the contrary) is adults CAN learn a language faster than children! Every single one of us was born with the ability to acquire language naturally. This ability does not disappear when you become an adult. In fact, by pairing your analytical mind, a better grasp of time management (hopefully 🙂), and your innate language ability, an adult can learn languages FASTER than children.
We had the opportunity to spend the 4th of July with several other missionaries in our state. The fellowship was great. Our kids, so far, have enjoyed being here. The Lord has helped us offer them a good balance between them getting to know kids here in our town, this culture, and having time with kids of their culture, other American missionaries.
This next month we have two main focuses. (1) We are still working with the consulate to move things forward. Bro. Brewer told me that in the 40 years he has here, the consulate has never returned any communication with him! I guess I am fortunate to have gotten some so far! I have read of a possible opportunity to get visas without returning to the consulate in America. Of course, with all that is going on, that would be ideal. Would you please continue to pray this would be resolved? (2) Bro Brewer will be heading back to the States for six weeks. I will be heading things up here in his absence. Since I have been slowly acquiring responsibilities for the past five months, such as leading all the music, event production, etc., it will not be a "shock." I have chosen to preach every other Wednesday and every Sunday morning. I am hoping to get a good connection with the younger people in doing this. If you could also pray for our relationship with the younger children and teens here, that would be a blessing.
- Children's documents have all come in
- 4th of July celebration with other missionaries
- Language learning is going well for all
This Month's Plan
- Language studies
- Continued Visa Work
- Prep for the Brewers absence
- Language acquisition
- Religious visas for Brazil
- Good connection with young people as he preaches on Sundays