Hello, minha familia! A lot happened this week.
By the way, I’m sorry my email didn’t make it to you yesterday. Memorial Day messed up p-day because all the libraries are closed where missionaries email and the family history center computers all froze because most of them are older than I am (Well, maybe a year younger).
I hope Grandma and Grandpa can be happy being together in the assisted living center.
What are you going to do with all of their stuff?
It sounds like you guys barely even have time to sleep!
I am praying for Grandma and Grandpa everyday.
This week we had a lesson with Debbie (who has been around the church forever). It was much better than our first lesson. She had read the first 8 chapters of the Book of Mormon and we read chapter 8 (The Tree of Life) with her. She said she has been praying to know if the Book of Mormon is true but “God hasn’t said too much” to her about it. I think we will talk to her next about being specific in her prayers.
We also finally came in contact with Valerie again. She is about to graduate from high school. Her Dad doesn’t even want her to be close to the church building, which is why we hadn’t seen her, but we finally talked to her and she said she still wants to meet with us. Her best friend, Barbara, is a recent convert of a year whose parent’s had a similar reaction. Barbara said she would sneak out of the house to have lessons in a nearby park so her parent’s wouldn’t know she was taking the lessons and that she has seen how her membership in the church has blessed her family. We are meeting with Valerie again tomorrow.
I’m not sure if I told you last week, but Elder Haynes and I went by a former investigator family last week and we decided to sing them a hymn. They were touched by it and invited us back for dinner and then after that invited us back again this past week. We are really building up their faith in us as representatives of Jesus Christ, which then builds their faith that what we are about to share with them will be true.
We haven’t had a baptismal date in a few weeks, and so Elder Haynes and I resolved this week to invite everyone including members to be baptized. We invite members by asking them to prepare to renew their baptismal covenants this Sunday and to read Matthew 26, which is the last supper. We also decided to really talk to everyone we see on the street, even if they don’t speak english or are on the phone or otherwise hard to talk to. Third, we decided to ask for referrals from everyone. At first, nothing happened. It was pretty discouraging. Literally, all day Saturday, nothing happened. All of our appointments fell through, no one wanted to talk to us, our extensive plans still ended up leaving us with nothing to do, and we ran out of miles on our car for the month. Thankfully, as Elder Wirthlin said, “Sunday Will Come” (that is an awesome talk by Elder Wirthlin, by the way. Look it up). After church on Sunday, we just contacted former investigators. Nothing special. But we asked for referrals from everyone. Again, it seemed fruitless, until about 8:00 at night. We knocked on a former’s door. Her mother answered, scantily clad and not excited to see us. We kept our commitment and asked for a referral. She scoffed at us but pointed to her next door neighbor, who she said she heard yelling at each other last night. She also said, ” I don’t think you would want to go there.” However, we went. We knocked on that door. This lady was a little nicer and definitely more covered up, but still not interested. After she rejected us, we again asked for a referral. She pointed across the street and said, “That family sure needs help.” Feeling like we were on a wild goose chase, we walked across the street. At this point we were a little discouraged. However, a woman walked out the door, we began contacting her, had a fantastic lesson on the street with her, she introduced us to her children, told us her husband had abused her children and so she was forced to leave him, and sincerely wanted to learn more. Honestly, Nancy (that was her name) was probably the most sincere person I have ever met while contacting. The spirit was strong as we taught her and we will be returning this week.
When we do what we are supposed to do, even in the face of disappointment, we will obtain the blessings promised by the Lord. And we will be happier.
I am grateful to be on a mission. I am grateful for the blessings it brings and the things I learn. I am grateful for a family that is faithful in the gospel. I am grateful that our family can be together forever. And I love you!