Thursday, August 18, 2016

June 27, 2016 Javier made it!

Javier being baptized at this time was a complete miracle.  God gave Javier to Elder Pena and I the first day we were together, three months ago.  Now, he is baptized, his wife is as active as it gets, and I have no doubt that they will be a strong family that will bring many to the same path.  Javier asked me to confirm him, which was an indescribable experience.  I felt everything the Lord has in store for Javier.  The difference in the light of his eyes from three months ago is unmistakable.  I feel so blessed to have been a witness to the undeniable power of the Holy Ghost and conversion.  Javier has found so much happiness in the gospel.  That family is a miracle!  I know that.  I know that the changes there are truly from a living God who orchestrates this work.  In the name of Jesus Christ, amen.

 Darwin on the left, Jefferson on the right. We are super tight with these guys. Great members!
 Brother Carcamo is the addition bottom left. Such a miracle. When I arrived here in February, he was inactive. Now he's the elders quorum  president, and solid as a rock. A big rock.

Cuy. Guinea pigs look a lot cuter with hair 
This is a special district

From photo of Journal pages (some dates reach back a bit)

May 25  Had exchanges with Elder Johnson again.  He amazes me so much.  I’m also always astounded at my own stupidity and the fact that we ever had difficulties together.  We now have one of the deepest relationships I’ve ever had with someone.  We talked about the struggles we’ve both been having lately.  It was good.

Had to translate an interview last night.  President came in to interview the sister’s candidate, Sebastion, because he’s on probation.  He said it was a misdemeanor, which the President can approve.  Well in the interview it turned out to be a felony.  Telling super pure in heart investigators that they can’t be baptized is not something I enjoy doing greatly.

June 9  It’s been a while since I’ve written.  The update is that things are going super well and Javier is back on track and wanting to be baptized on the 25th of June!  I love that family so much.  In addition, Yovani and Liliana are actually thinking about marriage!  Liliana wants to be baptized (had a date for a day, but Yovani still isn’t quite ready to marry her, but it’s close now).  Also Neilson is finally considering baptism seriously after two and a half years.

As for the zone, things are going very well.  We just had another zone training.  President Reynolds came (he never says no to us), and it was wonderful.

June 17  Today I was on exchanges with Elder Jheng.  He is an incredible missionary.  We taught the Tubas which started well but turned into the worst argument they’ve had in front of us before.  They kept carrying on and on with us and Darwin in silence.  At length, I interrupted them.  We went to the scriptures.  We invited Yovanni to pray, to repent, and to ask on behalf of all of us for the gift of charity.  Darwin suggested they hold hands, and as Yovanni began to pray, the Spirit filled the room so strongly.  We sat back down, and Elder Jheng gave us some wonderful insights and teaching.  He doesn’t know Spanish, so had no idea what was going on, but as he spoke to us in his broken English, it was exactly what needed to be said.  Further, all three of the other people there understood exactly what he said, even though Yovanni is the only one that speaks any English.  I had been about to begin translating for him, but something stopped me. It ended on a wonderful note, and we were all grateful for the miracles that occurred.

June 20  Today we had great finding success.  Found a new family at the soccer place, as well as many others who seem pure in heart.

Jefferson’s daughter arrived today.  It’s sad to see the extremely spoiled and entitled life she’sliving in Spain while her dad works like a slave over here separated just to be able to send money over to Spain.

Today starts the week that we see if we can hit the 567 in every pool in the zone.  Bermuda’s going to struggle.  As well as Elder Cahan and Woodmansee.  Because of that, we are going over to Elder Benitez tomorrow so Elder Marchant can do a trio style exchange.  It really is possible.  You’ve just go to have faith and determination that can’t be taken.

June 25  Last night, Javier was baptized.  It was a moment I have been working and praying and hoping for without stopping for the last three months.  The last year and a half, really.
Javier is so pure in heart.  He’s come a long ways in three months.  Our last visit together, two nights ago, I asked him to bear his testimony.  It was powerful.  He knows the Book of Mormon is true.  He knows we have prophets on the earth.

That’s a special family.  I have no doubt that I will be flying back in a year to see them sealed.  We have such a special connection.  Javier asked Elder Martino to baptize him and me to confirm him.  I feel so blessed to have seen Javier found and baptized in three months.

June 27   Yesteday I confirmed Javier and he received the Gift of the Holy Ghost.  What a special experience.  The Spirit was there so strong.  I love that family so much.

Elder Johnson’s last Preparation Day.  To celebrate we went all the way to the Point to see the famous Montauk Lighthouse.  It was nice to get outside and do something fun on p-day.  It’s been a while.  I am sad to see Elder Johnson go.  Our transfer together was not without struggles, but somehow he and I have made a friendship unlike anything before.  He has impacted my life so much.  He amazes me.  I love him a lot.   (Family note:  Elder Johnson is from Lehi, UT and came to visit our family after his release.  Since these posts are behind schedule, this one had just been put together.  Very fun to meet him and hear some mission stories).

Elder Johnson's last week 
Montauk Lighthouse

Montauk celebration. Check out that tree. You wouldn't believe what it took to get us all up there

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