NEWS (INVESTIGATOR'S NAMES HAVE BEEN CHANGED TO MAINTAIN ANONYMITY)
SEPTEMBER 30, 2013 - Get ready.. tons of news!
So.. Finally I have normal time on the computer! So.. get ready!
First off Thank you all for the Birthday wishes. Yes family I got everything you sent me. It was all awesome! :) I especially like the cookie package. Last time I tried to make cookies.. it didn't work out so well.. we'll see if this works any better! ha. Thanks for everything! It was SO funny.. So. The Elders got me a cake for my birthday with this big candle thing on it. They sang Happy Birthday to me in 3 different languages. Then we all took a bite of the cake. And quickly learned that it had a whole ton of coffee in it.. welp. So much for that. haha! The Branch celebrated my birthday by asking me to fill in the last 15 minutes of Sacrament meeting with a talk.. haha. That was fun. Impromptu French Talks. They're the best. When in doubt talk about Jesus, and tell miracles. :) ha. But hey. There were some teary eyed people, so apparently the angels that help missionaries were working really hard.
So. a little bit about what's going on around here. Especially this week.
Well. We have 4 super serious investigators. 2 of them officially have dates. The others are still deciding. But, there's a HUGE potential we could have 4 people getting baptised on the 26th of October. (happy late birthday to mom!). We'll see how things go.
Details: Jimmy - So. This guy is just a downright miracle to begin with. He is from Ecuador, speaks no French. Was taught a couple times by a Spanish missionary before I came into town. All I heard about him was that he was weird and hallucinates Great.. (I thought).. Well.. lesson number 1. Don't listen to anything anyone says about someone. Get your own opinion about them. Jimmy doesn't hallucinate He's seen angels. He opened up a LOT more to me than the other Elder, and it was truly an incredible experience for him, he just didn't have any answers as to what it was all about. We taught him the plan of salvation, and many tears later, he explained that he had absolutely no more questions. He's getting baptized on the 26th. (with the exception of a couple little problems).. you see, he doesn't speak French... And we only have 1 person in the Branch of 45 that speaks Spanish, but that 1 person is in Slovenia getting married until December.... So.. It's not like he can truly be an ACTIVE member of this Branch. It's so hard.. It's not like we can just NOT baptize him because he doesn't speak French, but then again. I can only translate all of church to him for so long.. What's going to happen when they don't have a missionary here to translate everything for him? ... Pray for us. we'll figure out SOMETHING. Other than that. He's FLYING! He is soaking it all up like a sponge. And he really does love us. It's so nice to have Amis that actually like you.. really. Can't describe how nice that is. :)
Osvalde - Well. Again, I heard things about him before I got there. All I heard was that he was SUPER Bible-Lovin' and he'd never read the Book of Mormon. Let's just say. At the end of our RDV this week. He accepted the Book of Mormon, And he's super stoked to read chapter 31 in 2nd Nephi to figure out the reasons he should be Baptized So that he can say an official yes or no for the 26th as well. I don't know what these other missionaries were talking about. You just need to explain it clearly to people, and of COURSE they want to read it. It's fantastic. :)
Sandra & Victor - These two have been taught EVERYTHING before I came around. They both kind of had baptismal dates, that they didn't even know they had. Apparently the missionaries got them to think about possibly committing to start preparing for baptism, but then never talked about their baptism again, so their date came and went. But they are not quite ready yet. We had a super powerful RDV with them on my birthday. (yesterday) and read through the baptismal interview questions to see what questions they still had and what was holding them back from Baptism. They certainly have some HUGE questions. For example. Does God even really exist? And why do we need just 1 church on Earth that is the true church? Oh, and what's the Priesthood? Yeah, we're doing "SERIOUS PRAYER WEEK" this week with them. We'll see if we can't get these situations figured out.
So. Bottom line is. I'm so incredibly grateful to be here in a place that was so prepared by other missionaries and angels. I just am lucky enough to come and throw a sickle into it all. Granted, there's much work to be done, but if the spirit is as strong as it has been in our last RDV's, I trust they'll all get the answers they need. :) It's truly incredible how powerful and tangible the spirit can be in these RDV's.
I love my Savior so much for all that he does for me. I'm so grateful for the fact that through him, I can have strength beyond my own to do things that otherwise would be impossible. I'm so grateful that now I understand what it means to "use the empowering Atonement in my life". I know for a fact that there are angels about us every day, and that if we are 100% obedient, and diligent. we literally have the RIGHT and the Authority to call down the help of these angels to touch people's hearts. I'm so grateful that this isn't just a fairy tale dream. Granted there are some days that my mission feels like a big dream I'm going to wake up from one day, I'm grateful that at least for 2 years I get to just keep telling myself that this is all real. I love the look on people's faces when I tell them how much God loves them when they needed that more than anything in that moment. I love getting phone calls from people in my last sector telling me how much they miss me, and how much they want me to come back. I really feel like finally all the hard work we're doing here, is paying off. Let's hope this feeling doesn't wear off too soon... Although, I'm sure one day it will. Because what on earth are we going to do when all 4 of these people are Baptized Back to looking.. haha.
I Love you all so much! Thanks for everything! Fam, I sure hope my birthday dinner/cupcakes? were good. ha. I Love you!
- Elder Lago Ps. I hope you got the pictures I TRIED to send last week. :) dad, the hard-drive idea sounds good. I'll send ya a memory card when I get them all backed up on the flash drive youre sending? Love you all!