This week was full of a great number of things, but I will take the time to focus on the highlights.
Febrero 4, 2016
So the family we have been working with that asked us 2 weeks ago to visit their home are going to be baptized this coming Sunday. It was quite a blur of events that were difficult to record all of them, but I will share what I have recorded thus far.
Qué pasó ayer con los Bañuelos y presidente Cid
- So we had our second lesson with the Banuelos where Presidente Florencio Cid and Hermano Jesus Figueroa were present as well. In the lesson Elder Salinas and I stood back in awe as Presidente Cid took control of the visit and guided them through what they wanted and what needed to be done. I was very impressed in not only how Presidente Cid was able to manipulate the conversation and control it in how he desired, but also how sincere the desires were to be baptized by la hermana Mariana and her husband, Ernesto. What I loved about it was when they asked how soon they could be baptized. This is what caught me by surprise. They wanted to be baptized the 14th!! Presidente Cid accepted that and we set up the lessons to get started. I felt that this was a miracle occurring before our eyes in that I still am trying to grasp how quickly this is all happening.
With all of this we have been visiting with them almost every day to get through all of the lessons to prepare them for the baptismal interview questions. What is great about this whole process is that they have been taught previously by the missionaries, so they know a great deal of the things we go over. There are many times where Ernesto, the husband, will share things that he learned in the gospel principles classes and her wife, who is typically a very serious faced individual, is smiling a lot more and participating.
One thing to note is that since day one, Mariana knew the church was true. She remained faithful trying to attend church when she could, but her husband wasn't so sure and held back. Now that we have begun visiting with them, the husband is the one taking the helm in asking the questions and participating where he can. It has been quite the treat working with them.
One thing we also started was English class. The sister that was teaching had been teaching for a year. She was getting worn out and there was a couple weeks that no one came, so with that she had us meet with her. When we got there at the church, around 8:30pm after a lesson we had with an investigator, Luz Mejia, she basically gave everything to us and then just took off. Like what you see in cartoons when a character has a bomb about to explode and gives it to an innocent bystander who watches helplessly as it is about to explode in their hands.
So we got together with the hermanas that serve in the Ward with us and we collaborated about what we could do to make this class a success. If we can get this going and make it popular, we could potentially find some new investigators to teach. With that in mind we took the resources that we had and began making flyers and pass along cards. We even made a fun Facebook post on the webpage that had been previously established. (Surprisingly there were about 140 people on the page!)
So we waited out for a month until February to start the classes again. We invited members and had the leaders announce them in the classes so that those that were interested could go. We put forth a good amount of effort and I was praying pretty well that there would be good attendance. There was a recent convert family, Magda Lopez (she was the one baptized before Rosario), that showed a great deal of interest in the classes. So I was hopeful that at least they would show.
Then Thursday came.
I regret not taking a picture, but I will next week. We had a turn out of about 10-13 people! I had only seen 4 in the previous class I had seen. As the class got underway, we were able to take the format we set out for the class and things went fairly smoothly. I was extremely happy for how things turned out. (Funny note: I ended up teaching the majority of the class because the other hermana, hna Navas, that typically would have helped was on splits teaching a lesson and I was with two fairly new companions that weren't really sure what to do. They started getting the hang of it though near the end.). At the end of the class everyone was laughing and having a fun time and all were walking away saying a phrase or two that they had learned in the class. I was still experiencing some butterflies from the stress I had before the class, but it was really fun. :) I can defiantly say that the Spirit was there helping because as soon as I began teaching, it flowed very naturally and I felt very calm and confident. I even was making a lot of fun jokes that helped lighten the mood and put the new people in the class at ease.
Febrero 5, 2016
We had fish tacos for a members birthday. (This was amazing, fish taco, carne asada, and a bunch of chile, pasta salad, and many more things)
Febrero 6, 2016
These are from a member that is from El Salvador. It is a torta with chicken, lettuce, tomato, and some other really good stuff. Imagine the size of two hands, and a little bigger, and eat that twice. Yep, Latino food is THAT GOOD.
So we passed by some former investigators to see if we could start working with them... It was their daughters birthday, who turned 8, and they love the missionaries. So they opened the door and first thing they said was "want some food?" We knew this was the only way to get into the door, and I was stuffed from what you see above, so we accepted and ate some really good food. We were able to set some things up for us visiting them again soon and we even gave a blessing to one of the members there, who is a less active member, who was sick.
A Ward initiative that we are trying to get going of showing our love to Christ this time of season.
Rosario's daughter, Abril, is a lot like Haley in that she is on top of things and even though her birthday is next week, she has started decorating her home for her birthday!
🌅 Elder Nathan Benson 🌅