Saturday, February 22, 2014

Week 13

We have sister missionaries in our area now! This past week has been a crazy one. Our ward hasn't had sister missionaries in like 8 years! Our mission president didn't split the area so now we can work however we really want. Having sister missionaries is a huge advantage in our area because there are a lot of widows and less active women in our area. We went over our investigator list, and gave the sisters both of our investigarors who are single moms and a widow. Since my companion and I (Elder Webster) can't go into their homes alone, it's way easier for the sister missionaries to visit them.The 2 sisters in our area are Sister Ramirez (she was in my district in the MTC) and Sister Hernandez (she just got to the mission on Monday). They are just as pumped as we are to work, and bring a great spirit to the area. 

I am no longer in a trio, it's just Elder Webster and I now. Being in a trio these past 6 weeks was a very different experience, and I learned a lot about working in a "team". For a while it was hard to teach because we didn't really know how to split up the lessons. Towards the end of the cycle however, we got the hang of it and teaching was a piece of cake. Now that I'm back to a normal companionship, I feel weird. My companion, Elder Webster, is still learning spanish, and this past week has been a little hard because I've been doing most of the teaching. I have been relying even more on the Lord's help to make sure I can teach effectively and also have my companion teach. When we were in a trio, Elder Webster would usually wrap-up our lessons, and Elder Leifson and I would teach. Now that it's just the two of us, we'v been experimenting on more effective ways to teach. I've been praying for help, because at times it can be a little overwhelming to teach. Thankfully, the Lord has heard my prayers and has granted me with patience and more love for my companion. 

This past week, something miracoulous happened. You guys remember Jonathan Roman? Well, let me jog your memory real quick. Jonathan was one of our most progressing investigators. He had a baptismal date for a couple of weeks ago, and he was doing great. Then, out of nowhere, he stopped talking to us and stopped progressing. We had to put his baptism off, and then decided to let him go. We kept praying for him though, and we prayed that one day he would come back with a change of heart. Well, this week, he came back! He called us really early in the morning on Tuesday and the first thing he said was "When can I get baptised?". At first I was in a weird shock because we hadn't taught him in a while and I had no idea what was going on, then I realized that my prayer had been answered. We met with him 20 minutes later at the church and talked to him and his brother, Abel. As soon as Jonathan saw us, he gave us the biggest hug ever and started crying. He explained to us what had been going on these past few weeks and all the trials he has been facing. He realized that he needed to get closer to God, and realized that he needed a baptsim. He has his interview on Friday, and we are praying ferverently that he will keep this commitment. 

After we taught Jonathan, we taught his brother Abel. Abel is 21 years old, and very eager to hear about our church. Jonathan had been talking to him about the Church this whole time, but he hadn't had the chance to talk to us because of his job schedule. We finally sat down with him and gave him lesson 1, The Restoration. Abel was awesome, and we could see in his face the desire to keep learning. We set a baptisimal date, and he accepted without hesitation. I told him how important and serious this commitment was, and he accepted and even told us that he wants to prepare to serve a mission once he gets baptised. I have faith that we will lead him to the waters of baptisim.

This week I read a scripture that has been burning in my little head all week long. It is found in Mosiah, chapter 28. Just a quick reminder of what's going on during this chapter. In the previous chapter we read about Alma the younger and the sons of Mosiah (Ammon, Aaron, Omner, Himni)  and the climateric change they have in their lives. They then have this enormous desire to go out and preach the Gospel to "every creature". My favorite verse is verse 3. "Now they were desirous that salvation should be declared to every creature, for they could not bear that any human soul should perish; yea, even the very thoughts that any soul should endure endless torment did cause them to quake and tremble." I LOVE this scripture because it expresses so greatly the yearn they had to really preach and proclaim the gospel, so great was this yearning that the very thought of knowing that a soul would perish made them tremble. Do we tremble when we think of our neighbors and friends who haven't heard the Gospel, and think of their salvation? Just somehing to think about.

I love you familia,
Elder Velazquez
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Preachin' in Action
That was the last day I was with Elder Leifson

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My Area: Pradera Dorada (The star is my casa)

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