Sorry I didn’t post anything for a while. Last week we had a family of investigators who could only meet with us on Monday, in the morning. For that reason, our entire P-day was thrown off. This is the first Jehovah Witness family I have met who has been willing to accept LDS missionaries. So it was definitely worth the limited time we had to send emails home last week. I can’t even imagine how much my confidence would increase if I was able to convert a J.W. That, coupled with the fact that I was able to change a light bulb this week when my companion, who has legs the height of my body, could not, I felt like I had enough confidence to take on the whole world!
I have been praying all week that Heavenly Father would let me stay in Las Americas for one more month because it is almost guaranteed that Juan and Guadalupe will be baptized within the next 30 days. Guadalupe is golden! After our first lesson, Guadalupe had already read much of the Book of Mormon, and told us that she knew that it was true. Guadalupe loves the church so much, that she actually set an example for me by taking notes during the Sunday meetings. The only obstacle we still have to help her overcome is giving up her bikini competition, which will allow her to go to church every week. That way she can get baptized on the 21st, along with her uncle. As for Juan… we finally helped him overcome his worries about going against everything he has learned in the Evangelical church. His pastor was opposed to him asking the Lord if the Book of Mormon was true. Also, Juan was not a fan of Elders Quorum. Apparently the teacher just has the quorum members take turns reading out of the manual. Juan loves how the church has helped him increase his spirituality so much, that he attended church on Sunday, even though his niece (Guadalupe) did not go. I’m so glad I’m staying here in Las Americas. Juan and Guadalupe told me that they were going to be super mad if the Mission President had transferred me.
We have recently had some amazing experiences, and have found some wonderful people, to increase our investigator teaching pool. One such person was a man who happened to wander into the Church on Sunday. He committed to baptism not knowing anything about the Church beforehand. And through the Lord’s guidance, we found Ruth this week. Ruth had been praying the day prior for the Lord to help her raise her kids, after her recent divorce. The very next day, we showed up at her doorstep to share a message about how the restored gospel of Jesus Christ will bring happiness to her family. She ended up going with us to church, after only meeting with her the day before.
This last week we were also led to a man who already had gained a testimony of the Book of Mormon before they had even met the missionaries! Marvin had found a copy at a bookstore not long ago, and told us that it drew his attention insomuch that he bought it. Isn’t it awesome to see the Lord’s hands in the work? After our first lesson with him and his family, Marvin told us that he always thought there was a reason that the Lord inspired him to pick up the book.
You asked about the progression of that investigator who was a gang member… I question whether he was even a gang member. He looks more like a chubby kid who stays inside playing “Call of Duty” all day. When we last spoke with him, he told us, while he was playing on his Play Station, that he defended Joseph Smith when the people he was playing with online were apparently telling him not to talk to the missionaries any more. He says that they told him that the Mormons just go around trying to convince people to believe in a “looney tune who claims to have seen God and Jesus.” He also told us that he was looking forward to attending church. He says that the Catholic Church and Evangelical churches just remind him “of bars without the liquor” (whatever that means). But then he didn’t even show up on Sunday.
I can’t believe how fast the time is flying! I’ve been out for nearly 10 months already! Before I know it, I will be able to see you guys again! Which is awesome, but on the other hand, it will be hard to leave when that day comes. There are so many people who still need to hear the message of the restored gospel, and so little time!