Wednesday, August 18, 2010

How Much Water do you Really Need......for a Baptism?

Hello hello!  Lets see for a quick update - here in Coite things are amazing!  The work is going great and life is perfect. I don’t think it could get any better.   This week seemed to be one good experience after the other!   To start out, Thursday we had zone conference, and just had a great training.  We also found out that because of changes in the mission we will be having zone conference one transfer, and interviews the next transfer, instead of both every transfer that is kind of sad, but good because it will give us more time to work every transfer.  Then after zone conference we ran home to get a baptismal meeting together and when we showed up at the chapel the Bishop called me into his office and said, "Elder we don’t have water” -- I’m thinking well that’s fine lets just fill up the font!  And then he explains how that water in the tank ran out and he did some things but it would be about another two hours until water came (welcome to Brasil) well what can you do? Nothing, so we sat there and waited. I didn’t want Jefferson and Vanikelly to get bored while we waited for the water to come so I was going around the church introducing them to everyone I could find and telling them random facts about the church.  But two hours is a very long time to wait! Eventually the miracle of the water happened and it started to fill up, but as usual no one wanted to wait for it to fill up all the way so we decided to go ahead and have the baptism. Well as I stepped in the font and realized the water didn’t even come up to my knee I knew we were going to have a problem!  But you can’t stop a baptism mid program to fill up the font so I told Jefferson as he got in the water that he just had to trust me and we were going to get it done.  I am so happy to say after the fourth try he didn’t stick a part of his body out of the water and we did indeed “get it done”,  then Vanikelly came in the water and acted like a champ and it only took her one try. After the baptism Jefferson’s friends were asking him why it took him four times to be baptized so I told the that it meant he would be a powerful leader in the Church.  That shut them up and made Jefferson have a little bigger smile on his face. It was so amazing to watch these two young people show their faith and make this important covenant with God.   I’m so grateful for the chance I had to be here and watch their growth in this gospel.  Then this Saturday our ward had an activity which was kind of like jeopardy and do you know what?!  No one knew where Joseph Smith was born!   I always thought that was an easy question but I guess I was just one lucky duck to have grown up in the east.  This Sunday is what I like to call miracle Sunday.   I think it was the best Sunday I have had in a long time.   As we got to church we saw George sitting there (this is the man who got arrested last week) and he looked really happy to be there and then half way through priesthood we had a family show up that we have been teaching.  It was so great to be able to sit with them through church and see the smiles on their faces.  I was also asked to bless the sacrament which was really weird because I haven’t done that since I have been on the mission. But I’m happy to report I got it right the first time!  After church, George told us he would try even harder, and be more focused on his baptism.  Last night we taught a lot of amazing lessons one was with the family that went to church and it seems Satan is very aware of the progress they are making because every time the lesson got even the slightest bit spiritual someone knocked on the door or walked in or some distraction so we ended the lesson quickly and remarked for tonight.  It has just been a really great week and transfer. I can testify that this work is important and this gospel is real.  I hope you all are well and that you are enjoying this wonderful gift we have called life!   Have a great week and remember that I love you.

Elder Mender
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