NEWS (INVESTIGATOR'S NAMES HAVE BEEN CHANGED TO MAINTAIN ANONYMITY)
NOVEMBER 11, 2013 - Finding Jeffrey
HELLO my family (and other people that I also consider family). We're hoping for a technology problem FREE week this week.. we'll see how this goes.
Well.. This week in the France Lyon Mission is what we called M-week. (you fill it in with any positive, motivational word that starts with an M) We just decided to call it Miracle week. Basically all that means is that the assistants made our schedule for us for the week. As well as our daily goals, etc. I think they meant for it to push us really hard this week.. But, truthfully. I'm pretty sure some of their ideas of activities to do during the day were not NEARLY as effective as something we could have planned on our own. But we gave it the gold old college try. Well.. Early on in the week, we changed the name to... "My word this is opposition week".. MANNN..... we had 10 Tomber-vous this week.. Meaning 10 people that had CONFIRMED rdvs. (5 of which we had members with us), that fell through. SO..... that stunk. We went from one tomber-vous to the next. Anyway. we kicked our butts into gear. Stayed positive. and set our selves some awesome "Not an option goals" Meaning we literally can not go back to the appartment at the end of the night unless we accomplish these things so we don't feel like TOTAL failures. (I think our not-an-option goals motivated us much more than our M-week did). well.. This week we have ANOTHER 14 brand new people we can be teaching. (that's added to the dozen or so from last week)... Here are a couple of the week highlights:
We contacted a man on the street named Kitito. He's a mexican gospel singer. yup. awesome I know. We asked if he had a minute to spare for Jesus, and he thought that was either a clever or a charming question, but he accepted. We sat on some benches in the middle of Genève with all it's noise and taught him the restoration with as much excitement and energy as we could. He was BLOWN AWAY. He absolutely LOVED IT. Just as we were talking about the Book of Mormon, he began asking us what he had to do to get one, and we said, nothing. Just wait until tomorrow so we can grab one in spanish for you, THE MOMENT we said that. The spanish elders came walking by. Boom. Miracle. Gave him the Book of Mormon right then and there. He was in paradise. The best part is. He goes to a "prayer group" every Friday night with anywhere from 15-30 people there. He asked us if we would be able to come tell all them the good news too. (he just would have to clear it with them first.) who knows. Maybe that's what we'll be doing this Friday. We'll see.. :) Except. There's an ami given to the Spanish Equipe. (with a potential of 20 more).
Then... literally the biggest miracle of my mission thus far. This last Saturday. phew.. I'm going to try to just type this without crying. (thanks a lot mom for your crying genes... haha.) Well.. I woke up SUPER motivated to talk to the whole world. But my companion really didn't. He just wasn't quite as motivated as usual. I guess the oposition got the best of him. Anyway. I had an itching desire to go to "Bel-Aire" where they have CROWDS and CROWDS of people ALL THE TIME. and just talk to EVERYONE in a really fast-paced environment. Anyway. needless to say. My comp wasn't really in the mood for that. well.. I did it anyway. I knew we needed to.. Although, after trying for about an hour and a half, I learned it wasn't VERY effective. People were in too much of a hurry. So we took a turn, headed to the lake where people walk a little slower. Ran into a member from the US, and pointed him the direction to the church. Then kept talking to everyone in sight. Contacted an African man. I said, "Bonjour on est les missionnaires pour l'eglise de Jésus-Christ. On partage un message de Jésus, est-ce que ça c'est quelquechose que vous aimeriez entendre?" (really really LAME contact approach).. well.. He looked at me confused, Said in English, "I don't know what you said, but whatever it is, the answer is yes." So... we explained ourselves in English, Went over to a little bench looking over the lake and the geyser and the sailboats, and taught him the restoration. But it was weird because he had this ridiculously huge smile on his face THE ENTIRE TIME. and he didn't say a WORD!... then we pulled out the Book of Mormon as we were talking about it. He looked at it, and started crying. I was so confused. But excited. Ha. I don't know what got into me, but the next thing I know, I say, "Jeffrey, are you Baptised?" He shook his head. "Would you like to be Baptised by someone that holds the Authority of God to do it?" He nodded his head with the biggest smile on his face that I've ever seen. Still confused. We set the Goal as the 30 of November as his Baptismal date. He accepted. Then began explaining his story....
Jeffrey is from Nigeria. He left his two little babies. (2 years and 3 months old). He left them 13 years ago, and hasn't seen them since. He lived in spain for 12 years. and has now been in switzerland for 1. Although he was raised in a VERY Christian home, he hasn't stepped foot into a church since he left Nigeria. He explained that he hated churches because all they do is force those that are dying of hunger to pay for the leaders to be even richer. (he spoke from experience). Well... apparently about 3 years ago, he was in Spain, and he got into a discussion with a man he didn't know about religion. He expressed this concern about churches, and this stranger simply told him. "My cousin is a member of the Church of Mormon. Apparently they don't pay their leaders. Also, I think they are actually Jesus Christ's church on earth or something like that. The only way to get to know them is to find the young men wearing black suits and white shirts that carry around their Church of Mormon Bible." For the past 2 years, Jeffrey has been wandering around looking for those young men. Luckily that day I wore my black suit. He told us, that it has been a dream of his to be part of the church of mormon ever since he met this random man in Spain. PHEW. well... that's not the whole story... you see, we had our big thanksgiving party at the church that night, and it was starting in an hour, so we asked him if he wanted to come with us to the church to see it. and come to the party. Plus we could get him a Book of Mormon in English. He accepted. He was giddy when he saw the baptismal font. But he was like a little boy at christmas when we gave him the Book of Mormon. He read it ALL throughout the party. He didn't really talk to many people. He just read. you could tell that he wasn't very educated, but he struggled his way through all of the introduction, the testimony of the witnesses, and he started memorizing the names of the books in it. ha. When it came time to eat, he ate EVERYTHING on his plate.. then went and got seconds and ate again. haha. And at about 8 o'clock, he said he had to go. So we walked him out of the church. He thanked me over and over again with this never-ending smile on his face. He gave me a huge hug, in which I could feel him shivering like crazy in his little jacket. It hit me to ask him... "Jeffrey, where are you staying tonight?".. this is the conversation we had... "Oh you know.. just around". "Do you have a bed to sleep in tonight?" "no.. but that's why i need to go now. I need to make sure my box is still there where I hid it under the stairs." "Do you have another Jacket?" "No." "Would you have somewhere to put a blanket if we got you one." "no, someone would steal it, but I don't want ANYTHING from you. NOTHING. Tonight I will sleep warmer and happier than I have ever slept in my life, because now I'm home." He thanked me one more time that walked away. There was nothing in the world harder than seeing him walk away knowing where he was going. But then, as I watched him walk away, I saw him walking, READING the Book of Mormon with a huge grin on his face. The next time I saw him was in church yesterday in the English ward. He was in paradise. The members love him. He really is so sincere in everything that he does.
Anyway. Jeffrey will be being taught by the English sisters. He'll be baptized on the 30th of November. I'm in heaven. This is so real. God is real. I love him. I Love you. -Elder Lago
address: Les Missionnaires Elder Lago 61, Rue de Lattes CH - 1217 Meyrin, Suisse