I am companionless…and I feel a bit lost and sad. Right now I am on temporary
divisions with another missionary until the changes this Wednesday. It will be
different to work in his area and not in mine, but so is life. I like what you
said, change brings growth. I have a feeling that this week is going to bring
much growth, that there is much change on the horizon for me.
I very happy and grateful with what has happened in the last week in our area.
We had so many spiritual experiences and miracles that my hastily written letter
wont do them justice but I will try my best to fill you in.
The week was so busy that my companion didn’t´ even have a chance to be trunky
and think about his house. (for the best I think). We worked all week long with
the three familias to prepare them for baptism. Throughout the week, I had
divisions twice so that another missionary could interview all of the
Speaking of interviews, we had ours this week in preparation for the changes and
I am so grateful for what the President said. We had a nice interview and he was
happy to hear that we had possibilities for families this week. He then shared
with me how in some missions in the World, there are missionaries that are
baptizing 10 families per month. That is amazing! I realized that there is still
more that I can do in the work. If the field is ready elsewhere, I think I can
thrust with my sickle with a little more might to lay up in store another family
here and there. I am committed to do so. I know that with the help of the Lord I
can bring families into His kingdom.
But the interviews went well, so well in Fact that all of the familias were
animated and ready for baptism. I wish I could send photos from the baptismal
service, It was quite the day! Three familias entered the water and the
following Sunday they were confirmed. It was the perfect way for my companion to
leave the mission. But we didn’t have the service without some challenges. The
allotted baptismal clothes ran out and we had one larger father to baptize who
had no clothes to use. He is a funny man, but with much seriousness he said,¨Ï
am not leaving here without being baptized. I am going to be baptized if it
means I have to wear that dress.´´ And so he did. It was a little embarrassing
for me to see him but he was alright with it. His family was all joking about it
and saying how he was literally following the example of Jesús in the way of
baptism. Well, I cant help but marvel at his faith and sacrifice at following
the Lord into the waters of baptism. He will be a great example for his family in
the future. The familias all had wonderful experiences. They said that they felt
like new people and that they had literally felt the forgiveness of their sins.
Sunday we spent the whole day saying goodbye to the familias and recent converts
in the ward. It was quite a spiritual boost to feel of the gratitude and love of
the members. In church, they announce that I might leave this week too (which is
possible) so it felt like a goodbye for me too. We´ll wait and see. But anyway, as
we said goodbye to each and every family, my Heart was filled with gratitude as
I realized how the members loved us. The newly baptized family was nearly in
tears as we left. They thanked us and offered another special prayer for us and
mentioned our names specifically in the prayer so as to bless us personally.
They have all expressed their desire to go to the temple the next year and I
would love to see that happen. We visited with Carlos and Fatima and they again
thanked us for being the messengers sent by God to change their lives. We helped
Carlos give his first fathers blessing with his newly received Melchizedek
priesthood. What a blessing it is see a recent convert bless his family. That is
what it is all about.
We visited with the Sanchez family and they told us how if we had not come by
that first day, they perhaps would be in the street and separated. I was touched
to hear that they wanted to give us dinner. We ate the humble table of a poor
family and I had never felt so much in the presence of the rich because they are
rich of heart.
Being a missionary is difficult. I feel very lost and I struggle at many times
but when I realize that lives are being change here, that people are accepting
the true gospel of Jesús Christ and are living it, I know that it is all worth
I know that God lives and that this is His church. The blessings that are found
therein are most desirable and endure throughout the eternities. I know that the
baptism we perform is the only (thing) that unlocks the door to numerous blessings
including life with God again and the forgiveness of sins.
Go forward with faith and God will go before you and show you the way!
Elder Grant Russell