Monday, June 13, 2016

Let me tell you about Jardim Satelite

 FAMILIA QUERIDA! <3 This is going to be a little long, sorry! Let me tell you about Brazil.

I thought São Paulo would be miles and miles of orange, brown, and white one-story boxes with some old churches, but it is nothing like what I expected. It is so exotically beautiful!! Sao Paulo is more of a Disneyland Jungle New York, with vibrant colors and everyone passing on the street actually says, "Tudo bem? Tudo bem!" like they're old friends! In the median of the road, there are massive trees that canopy over people biking with their friends on the handle bars. I feel like I've gone back in time because everything from the sinks to the food labels has an 80s feel to it. But of course everyone has iPhone 6s and the stores play Rihanna and John Mayor. It's winter right now, which I thought meant 60 degrees opposed to the 90 in summer, but it is abnormally FREEZING. Someone told me that last week that São Paulo was colder than Alaska. I was freezing to death until a member gave me a big warm sweater (which I am currently wearing). The trucks that play music here don't sell ice cream, only propane. Water is bike delivered.
JARDIM SATELITE (shjar-shjing satEleech)
This has been the transfer of prayers answered, like I said last week. Our area was closed for half a year. Bispo had been asking for months for missionaries, and President received an answer that it was time. I feel absolutely inadequate to be the missionary sent to these people. From the night we arrived, they have showered us with love and kindness. They pull warm clothes and blankets from their closets, kitchen supplies from their cupboards, and are constantly dropping off groceries and treats. They fixed our shower, fridge, microwave, and give us rides. They welcome us into their homes, and drop what they're doing to visit investigators and don't just give us directions to places, they walk us there. It has touched my heart so deeply to see how willing they are to give what little they have and their excitement to help us bring back last sheep and find people who still haven't heard the glorious message of the restored gospel of Jesus Christ. I didn't think wards like Jardim Satelite actually existed, but how privileged I am to be here if only a short while. We have already seen miracles together! I know the friendships that I've made here have an eternal foundation.

Wake up at 6:30, exercise and get ready for the day. 8:00-12:00, personal, companionship, and lang studies, and newbie training. THEN..we have our one meal of the day--Almoco-- at a members house. <3 It typically consists of rice, beans, some kind of meat, salad, highly concentrated juice, and desert that contains sweetened condensed milk in some form or another. No one actually forces you to eat here, but maybe I just haven't experienced that because I already eat so much ;) I don't know how I lived 19 years of life without eating rice and beans every day. On days without a member meal, I never feel satisfied with my normal food in the house. Almoco is a life changing experience every day. Then from 2-9 pm we get down to business. The schedule is kind of brutal, but I like it and I am getting used to it. I like not having dinner because then we can truly spend time with the members and love them and not rush the Brazilian time table. When we got to the area, there was nothing to work with except for 2+ year old records from the area book of former investigators. Our work consists of contacting in the street and trying to find these people, and knocking around their houses. Sister missionaries will be provided dress pants which are mandatory to wear from January to May. Hooray for dress pants...but we can wear backpacks. Hallelujah!

Our teaching pool is small, but golden. I want to tell you about "Goldie." It was my 5th day in Brazil, and it was ROUGH. Rain had been pouring all day, very gloomy, and we were sharing an umbrella as we tried to navigate the streets and find these former investigators without getting our map book and records wet. It got old after 3 hours, and we both wanted to go home and hibernate until the sun came back and we weren't fasting anymore. But of course we kept working, and at 7:30, we called the name "LUISAAA" outside a former investigators gate. Goldie lived in the house behind Luisa, but she thought she heard her name and came to us (rather suspicious, I know.) She is just the most glowing and full of light individual, and she had her husband and child are incredibly humble. We sat down in their tiny home and were guided to teach a very unique lesson, and it touched her heart. After we finished, she walked us to the street, hugged us, and began to cry. We asked "Are you happy?" She nodded. "Was this an answer to prayer?" She nodded. We hugged her again and of course I began to cry, and I'll never forget looking back at her waving and crying. That image will forever be a gift. <3 And she ACTUALLY CAME TO CHURCH, first time for that to happen on my mission! I'll keep you updated. :)

What a healthy companionship. We are actually getting close to that envisionment of fun adventure, "skipping down the sidewalk singing from the rooftop" missionaries. I have never laughed so much in my life; that's all we do all day long. She makes me feel like warm homemade bread and Oregon. There is literally nothing about her that bothers me, which is kind of awkward for companionship inventory. I say it is healthy because laughing has been so good for my soul, and there's something about her that actually helps me tell her when I am struggling. One night I was struggling, but I went against what the normal Sister Ludlam would do and told her. I said, "You know that stress scale that goes from green to red in the manual? I think I am in the orange." She told me I was not allowed to keep going until I cried. I did, we talked, I felt better, and we got back to work. She is also an incredible powerful teacher. Just like Jesus Christ, she teaches in a loving, bold way, uses scriptures and common objects to teach principles, and tells stories. I honestly am lost as to why I got Sister Gines AND this area. I'm so spoiled.

I know that the Church of Jesus Christ in its fullness is on the earth today. I know that living the gospel of Jesus Christ will bring more joy than we could ever imagine. Heavenly Father loves us, we are His children, and we have the divine potential to become just like Him if we live the gospel. We are here to change and become more like him, and to help others do it as well. What a beautiful beautiful thing. I love you all-- have a great week!!

Sister Ludlam


  1. Wonderful letter. So happy things are going well. May the Lord continue to bless you. Your life is blessing all of us.

  2. We are so proud of you and your example! Keep up the great attitude and work hard. We love you
    President and Sister Jones

  3. So happy to see that you finally made it there. And it sounds just like what missionaries do.You will be blessed. We send our love and our prayers for you. Paul and Jan Zundel

  4. So happy to see that you finally made it there. And it sounds just like what missionaries do.You will be blessed. We send our love and our prayers for you. Paul and Jan Zundel