Good morning folks!
It's been a crazy and wonderful week as we've been preparing for Nubia's baptism. We almost didn't have time to teach our other investigators, but still managed to have one of the most successful weeks of my mission. These past couple transfers have proved to me that if you work hard and put your trust in the Lord, He will work miracles. And that's exactly what He continues to do for us.
L (Joven) progressed this week. We were finally able to fast with him so that he could come to church next Sunday. He went through the fast with faith and real intent! We have really built a desire in this young man, and it's showing in his prayers and that way he talks about the Gospel. He's still definitely a work in progress, but with some time and some church attendance, I think he'll progress toward baptism.
"Other" L has been sick this week, so we were unable to meet with him. We scheduled an appointment with him tonight, so let's all pray that it doesn't fall through. He really just needs to come to church and show some real initiative. We'll get there!
The rest of the week was focused on getting Nubia prepared for her baptism on Friday. So we taught her the remaining lessons she needed, got her some baptismal clothing, set up the program and made all the calls, and addressed any doubts or concerns she had. Let me tell you. This woman is amazing. She's been through an amazing conversion process and is fully committed to the covenants she has made with God. She hasn't wavered since she made the decision to be baptized.
Let me tell y'all about the baptism on Friday. So we got there early so we could fill up the font. This new building is awesome! The water heater is tank-less so there was never a shortage of hot water! We ran the water for over two and a half hours and the temperature never even dropped! But that's beside the point. So we filled up the font, set up the chairs, pulled out the TV, and made sure that the programs were set out. And then.....the baptism. We were so happy to see so many people attend. Nearly all the branch members came! That's how much support Nubia has. So we had our opening prayer, hymn, and baptism talk, and then it was time for the actual ordinance. Nubia's son, Edgar, got to baptize her. I was so happy to see that it went perfectly! And then right when she came up out of the water she gave her son a huge hug. It was a beautiful thing to see. Then I sang a special musical number "Señor, te necesito" (or in English, "I need thee every hour.) It went super well! I was proud of myself! Music always brings the Spirit, so we made sure to have a special musical number. After that, Elder Flake gave a talk on the Gift of the Holy Ghost and we had some closing testimonies and welcome to the branch. Everything went beautifully. I'll attach some pictures.
So here's some of Nubia's story. She's 54 years old and she's been searching for a church her whole life. She's always had a good heart and a lot of faith, and she was searching many years for a place to show her faith. Six months ago, she wanted nothing to do with the church or the Book of Mormon, even after the sisters invited her to read and pray about things. She just refused. So then they gave her to us, hoping that maybe we could work some magic. So we started being bold with her and answering her questions about the Plan of Salvation, particularly the after life, and her eyes began to open. We then started showing lots of videos (because they bring the spirit and teach very simply) and she just started to understand everything. She then started to read and pray about the Book of Mormon and was able to receive multiple answers about its validity. As we continued to answer her questions and give her the hope of another chance to see her loved ones, she couldn't say no the baptism. So we set a date and the rest is history. I think what really made the difference with her is realizing just what the Gospel can bring her. She had the hope of seeing her loved ones again, and she used that hope to motivate her to action. Now she no longer has that hole in her heart, or that thing missing in her life. I remember during the talk on baptism, Sister Pouliot (sister missionary) said that Nubia's family was smiling down upon her. During that moment, Nubia just began to cry. She knew what she was about to receive and that through being baptized, she could perform saving ordinances for her loved ones. In fact, she already did THREE family names in the temple. That's how serious she is about this! She's just amazing.
And that's the story of Nubia. She was confirmed yesterday and is now a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. All of that because of our diligence in teaching her the truth and in her diligence to seek out answers from God. Simple, but beautiful.
And that was our week! Now we just have to get out there and continue to find those that will receive us!
Thank you for your prayers in my behalf. Y'all have an awesome week!