Monday, October 29, 2012 11:20 AM
So this week really was such an amazing week!! I love getting so many emails from everyone and I really love getting those letters through pouch, they really are such a help throughout the week!! So the main thing about this week was getting this huge family ready for baptism, and boy has it been a long process with them, but one that I never will forget in my entire life.
So to start off, this is part of the same family that was baptized 2 weeks ago, Martha, Paulina, and Marcela. I cant remember how much background I gave about them, but they have been seeing the missionaries on and off for about 8 years now. They really loved all of the other Elders, but for one reason or another they just didn't get baptized, and then I guess they ´´white washed´´ the area about 3 years ago and this family got lost. Well thanks to the daughter of our bishop, they were found again. When we first talked to them, 2 of the three that got baptized, Paulina (the closest girl to me) and Marcela (the lady in the back looking down haha), 2 weeks ago said that they wanted to get baptized after the first lesson, but no one else did. As we kept working with them, Martha (the teenager with in the front with a brown jacket) realized that she didn't need to have the faith of a prophet to get baptized, so those three were baptized, but the brother of Martha Santiago (the girl right next to me) didn't want to get baptized, neither did the mom of these two Martha (the mom in white to the far right), and they were both really stubborn about not getting baptized. Throughout this week we talked a lot with them, and on Friday and Saturday we had one of our zone leaders come, Elder Ascencio, to interview everyone in their family. Well, this really was what they needed.
The mom Martha and her sister Consuelo (the other mom in white) were very sure that they weren't going to get baptized, but just like you said mom, people don't do things because they don't understand or have questions, and this was there case. After talking with Elder Ascencio, both of them when they came out of the room just had lit up faces and were sooo happy, and they both committed to be baptized. What really helped Consuelo is that a little bit before that her son, Edgar (the other boy in white, the younger one) said he wanted to get baptized and was interviewed as well, so what helped with her is the idea of getting baptized with her son. Now onto Santiago.
To be completely honest, I feel like he is the reason why I am here in this mission, at this time, in this area. After his interview with Elder Ascencio, me and him had some time alone to talk, and I had an amazing opportunity to share with him my testimony. I know that all of the experiences that I have had in my life, the good and bad, the good decisions and bad decisions, have all tailored my testimony to help him. He is a 16 year old guy who is very similar to me, and it was very easy for me to look back and see those decisions that I made in my life that helped me get to where I am now. As I shared scriptures that helped me make the good decisions in my life, it helped strengthen my own testimony as well as I know helped him with what he needed. That night I saw a change in his eyes that I will never forget. This is really why us missionaries are here, to help people change to live with God and their families forever. I almost never want to leave here solely because of this change that I have seen in his life.
Going along with change, there has been a major change, if not more so than Santiago in the father Juan (the one who is super serious in the back) At first he didn't want anything to do with us, but he started slowly listening to our lessons. When Elder Ascencio came, before he started talking with people, we first taught a lesson about the plan of salvation, and that was definitely one of the most amazing lessons ever. Right after that, E. Ascencio talked to this Juan in an interview for about almost 2 hours, and when he came out, he came out a completely different person, he was actually happy! Ever since then, he has greeted us with the biggest smile and a hug, and there has been a new found light. He will be eligible to be baptized in around 3 months, and I cant wait for that day for him, and most of all, to see this family in front of the temple, after being sealed for time and eternity!!!!
Again, this family is why I am here, to help them experience the hope and joy that I have felt in my own family. Thank you mom for teaching me correct principles in the gospel and for truly always being there for me, it really makes a difference in the lives of the children, I´ve noticed that more than anything here (thank you dad too). Thank you for supporting me and letting me have this opportunity to be the instrument in the Lord´s hands to bring these people the same happiness that we have as a family. I hope all is well, I love you all, and tell Pres. O and Pres. Duffin ´´congrats´´ and that they will be in my prayers for the next little bit haha
p.s. This is what we did for pday last week, we had 1.2 kilogram tortas, and boy were they good, and today we are going to eat with this family so I am pretty excited about that :)