Dear Dad and mom,
I really wanted to watch the Christmas devotional but the time that it previews there meant that it was 10 o clock at night here and we had to be at home so that didn't work out but its ok. So for our zone conference we didn't stay in Imperatriz. We just caught a bus back home after the meeting because it is only an hour away. The new MTC curriculum is the new things that they are concentrating a little bit more on while the missionaries are in the MTC, like teaching people, not lessons and revelation through the book of Mormon and some other things. They concentrate on 7 subjects to help new missionaries. They have instituted these things here in the missions too. That 4 day conference that I had a little while back was all about these 7 subjects. A churrascaria is exactly like Rodesios. It is just a Brasilian restaurant. The Jello was made like normal with water, but it was covered in condensed milk. I will try and think up a Christmas message to share with you all and I will send it in my next email. I still haven't got my Christmas packages, but I did call the mission office and they will let me know when they get to Teresina and try and get them out to me by Christmas. So something that happened yesterday I will share with you all and maybe it can be my Christmas message for the family. Yesterday, after we got done eating lunch we headed back to our house to drop off our suit coats at the house, just my comp and I. When we got about a block away I saw a man with this cart that had a box of full beer bottles and some empty ones to the side of the box. This man had his head down and was resting under the shade of a tree. He was really dirty, his shirt was ripped and torn a little bit and yesterday the sun was really hot. As we passed the man I looked over at him and I heard the spirit tell me that I need to talk to this man and offer him a glass of water. So I told my comp to hold on a minute and I went back and talked to him. I asked him if he was ok and he said that he was fine. He was a little bit drunk and I asked him if he wanted a drink of water and at first he said that he was fine, that he was just resting, but I persisted and told him to come to our house and drink some water. When we got to the house I asked him some more questions while my comp went inside and got water,I asked him if he had a family and he said that he did, a wife and three kids. I also asked him if he had eaten lunch that day and said that he had but I wasn't sure. I asked him if he had food to eat that night and he said that he didn't. He began to tell me that he was unemployed and that he had used the last of his money to by that box of beer to resell and try to sustain his family. This man began to break down and cry and my comp and I decided to give him some food to feed his family for that night. We gave the man some rice with some ramen noodles that we had, some crackers and some other things. At first he didn't want to accept it because he said that there were other people in worse conditions than he and that we should save it for them. I shared a little message about God with this man and he told me that he was ashamed to ask God to help him because of the way he had lived his life. I told him about God being our Heavenly Father and that he always wants to hear his children. The Spirit was so strong in that moment that this man just started bawling and thanked us for the help. We got his address but unfortunately he is in the other Elders area so we won't get to teach them, but I know that the Lord is in this work and that he always puts people in our paths to help and to share the Gospel with. I don't know if that man is going to remember me, but I know that the Lord taught a whole lot to this man, that God has so much love for each one of us his children and wants to hear each and everyone of us. I am out of time for this week but I love you all very much I will get the number for you to call me at on Christmas by next week.
Love your Son,Elder Crittenden