Thursday, December 23, 2010


Well, this was a good week. Yesterday was our Christmas conference and it was way fun. We went to the Manaus temple, took some pics, and had a little testimony meeting. It was so much fun to see some old friends and comps again. And the temple is really coming along! It's always a motivation booster to see the temple coming along. After that, we went to a churrascaria. It was so good! It's all you can eat meat, if you guys don't know. They come along with meat and cut it off for you at your table. I ate SO much. I even brought the Red Robin Seasoning, just to add a little America to the meal. After that we watched a Christian football movie. Defeating the giants, or something like that. It was ok....Kinda cheesy, but it's always fun to watch football, and it had a good message. Pres then talked with us and we had a really spiritual meeting. Oh, yeah. And we had a little talent show. We did a remake of the 12 days of Christmas to some mission/Manaus things, and it turned out well. I played guitar, Sister Jayme had a guest appearance, and we got some pretty good laughs. And Pres said he liked it and it was perfectly appropriate (unlike some of the other acts...). It was a good time.

I got to see Elder Wolfe, the first missionary that I trained, at the conference. He shared something with the mission that I had told him. (I had no clue that he even remembered.) He quoted me and said, "Every transfer for a missionary is a new start. You get to be a new person every transfer. You can decide how you want the new "you" to be. Just look back, see the good things and apply them. Leave the bad things behind. If you do that, you'll grow, learn, and be happy." None of us are defined, we can make ourselves into who we want to be...

On football and America, we had a pretty fun day this week. We have a member of our ward who served his mission in Provo, and since he knows English, he now makes bank down here. So, he had us over for lunch this week and made us Baby back ribs and BBQ chicken. It was so good. American food is just so flavorful....But that same day we were walking past a college in our area that has a field where we play football and frisbee. We saw a game, so we walked past just to see what was going on. Turns out it was the Manaus Amateur football championship game. We ended up watching a little while. It was pretty funny. Only half the guys had football pads and you could tell they really didn't know what they were doing. But, some of the guys and coaches saw us watching and came over to us wanting to talk about football. So, we chatted for a little while and we invited them to church and everything. They want to mark a time to play with, who knows. Maybe one P-day we'll play with them. But, it was nice to have an American day...

The work is still going well. We still have some baptismal dates for next month for men and families, and we helped the ward make a ward mission plan this week. So, we are hoping for some good success over the next few months.

Well, I gotta go. I'll quickly just bear my testimony that I know that Christ lives! I'm eternally grateful for Him and for His loving sacrifice. I know that through Him and our faith, nothing is impossible, and that we can see miracles in our lives. I'm grateful for His example, humility, and sacrifice for me, and I'm striving to become more and more like Him everyday. I know that He lives, and that He loves all of us more than we can imagine. I know that He restored His church, and has prepared a way so that we can live with our families for all eternity. I'm so grateful for Him and all He has done for me. I love my Savior, and I leave this testimony in His name, the name of Jesus Christ, Amen.

Love you guys!!!!!!!! MERRY CHRISTMAS!!!!!!

-Elder Eric Stapley

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