Wow, wow, wow.
The news............................................(drumroll, please, Mackay)......................................................................................
My First Baptism!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Yes, I had my first baptism on Saturday, and it was BEAUTIFUL!!!! Augustin Valle was baptized at 10:00 Saturday morning and let me tell you, it was a MIRACLE that it happened!!!
Remember how I told you all about him last week? Easy to have the baptism, right?? No, definitely not, but I am so glad that it happened the way it did, because I have an even greater testimony that this is the work of the LORD, and we just have the amazing opportunity of being instruments in the hands of the Lord. Sit back, and get ready for this story!!!
Last week, we set everything up with his Dad for the baptism and thought that it would come without problem. We went to talk with his Mom on Monday (his parents are divorced) and to our dismay, she strongly said no. We began to teach, and by the end of the lesson, she agreed that Augustin could be baptized in 3 months. Pucha. We left the lesson knowing that we had some work to do. Tuesday, she was a bit more open and agreed that he could be baptized in a month.... Wednesday she was the same. I felt the impression to ask her if we could have the interview to see if Augustin was prepared now (This 9 year old is AMAZING and has a super strong testimony and a GREAT desire to be baptized). As I began to open my mouth to ask if we could have the interview, Hermana Malhue asked exactly the same thing! I love that we received the same prompting!!! Definitely what the Lord wanted! His Mom, Pamela, agreed and we proceeded to plan the interview for Friday. She said that if Augustin really was ready and not just acting a certain way when we were around, he could be baptized. When the interview came, we felt a lot of peace, and knew that everything would be okay. Pamela was completely different and even a bit emotional. She apologized for being closed and expressed great joy that her son was making this decision. Wow! We moved forward with the baptism the next day and it was beautiful! I know that this baptism happened thanks to the Lord. We had a special musical number by the kids of the primary and it was so touching! The talk on baptism was also by one of Augustin´s friends in the primary and she did such a good job! The whole service was very spiritual and Pamela LOVED it. She cried through the whole thing and at the end, expressed great joy that her son had made this choice! The next day at the confermation, she was so happy and said that she hadn´t stopped thinking about the baptism since it happened! Wow. We feel that she too will be baptized in time!
The other investigators are coming along well, but the hard thing is getting them to church. We had 6 in church this week and it was amazing, but the hard thing is that those who don´t come have to wait longer for their baptism.
Sergio has just about stopped smoking. He is down to 2 a day, which is HUGE, but the problem is that he hasn´t come to church because of his work schedule. We are a bit worried about him, and don´t want to have to drop him, but he´s not willing to ask for the morning off to come to church, so it´s hard. He has a testimony and wants to be baptized, but he´s not doing his part to make it happed. It´s hard because we LOVE Sergio, and know that he needs to be baptized (everyone does) but if he´s not progressing, we can´t spend the sacred time that we have with him.
Alexander is doing well. He finally found a job, but it is on Sunday as well, so he didn´t come this week. Bummer. We are going to work with him so that he can come.
Did I tell you about Jorgelina and Daniel and their 3 super darling kids??? Their family is amazing and progressing well. Daniel and Jorgelina read the Book of Mormon together and say their prayer together every night and they pray as a family every night as well. WOW. They are great and they came to church on Sunday!!! They need to get married and this has always been their plan, but they don´t want to ruch into anything... we are working with them.
Beymar came to church again and he went to 2 activities during the week! He is doing great!
Isabel and Nadia are darlings. Isabel had a birthday this week, so we went with cake and everything! I think that it helped their Mom feel a bit better... They are having some major problems in the family, and we think that this is why she isn´t giving permission for the baptisms... we are praying that we can have them this week. These girls are basically members. Their older siblings and Dad are members but inactive. The two girls come to church every week with their one active sister and are just darlings. We are praying fervently to know how to do this work with them... They have GREAT desires to be baptized and we want to help dearly.
Maria, Juaquin, Familia Torres, Marianna, Omar, Yelka, and a few others are struggling to keep commitments and we had to make some hard decisions to leave them, but when we pass by we check in. Preach my Gospel says that it is actually an act of love to leave an investigator if they aren´t progressing. We have to invite and do EVERYTHING that we can, and then these people have their agency.
I can´t believe that we are entering the 5th week of the transfer! This week and one more and changes come again!!! We can´t decide if we are going to have changes or if we will both stay here... I am not even going to think about it. Whatever the Lord wants... It´s always hard to leave an area because I really put my whole self into the work and then the time comes to go and it´s like leaving your home and family with all the people that you come to love SO MUCH!!!
We made brownies twice this week and they turned out great without problems! haha.
I love Hermana Malhue! We have a great connection and it is really special to be working together. I love learning and growing with her and I love that we are truly sisters. She is wonderful and I learn so much from her. She is really really special for me. We have a lot of fun together, but also work so hard. We teach between 55 and 65 lessons a week and I love that we strive to follow the spirit. This mission has been the most humbling experience of my whole life. It´s really true that we can´t do a thing on our own. Everything depends on the Lord. Literally EVERYTHING.
I love you all TONS and love getting your letters and reading all about how you are all doing!!! I PROMISE that I will comment on everything next week. SO SORRY. I love you all TONS!!!!!!!
Pictures: 1 and 2- Augustin's baptism
3- spring in Ushasia
4- Sergio's birthday