This week was super good again! How often are there weeks in a mission where it's just crazy good? Turns out a lot!
Anywho, here are some of the big main events:
- We had a huge fireside, or a special meeting, on Sunday night up in Chorley (which is where the Temple, MTC, and lots of other things are) where new members of the church get up and talk about their path to joining the church with special musical numbers and whatnot. These firesides are typically pretty well attended, but last night there were so many people! The missionaries that are currently in the MTC showed up, tons of missionaries from the mission, all of our friends, members from all over, etc. There were probably 400-500 people there which is absolutely insane.
Anyway…we show up with our friends, say hello to a few people and sit down. I turn around to see if our other friend has shown up yet and I feel a tap on my shoulder. I turn around and NIKOLETT FROM ST. HELENS IS THERE!!! For those who don't remember, Nikolett and her cute family are my absolute favorite people in the entire world. I talk about them all the time and cry every day because I don't get to see them every day. One day I will move in with them and then we will all finally be happy. Anyway, we talk, we cry, we hug, we get a photo, and then I get another tap on my shoulder. I turn around, and TUNDI (Viktor's mom) FROM ST. HELENS IS THERE!!! How many surprises can one sister missionary take???
One more surprise!! When the time in the fireside rolls around to where the new members get up and speak, guess who got up?? Phil!! My first baptism from St. Helens!! I will 100% admit that I cried when he talked about how much the gospel has changed his life and how grateful he is for his Savior. The gospel and the power of Christ's Atonement is so huge. It has been such a blessing to be able to watch people's lives be totally changed and turned around because of the gospel. That's why I stay here.
- We went and taught Family Home Evening with a cute family we love and talked about Lehi's dream and shoved my sleep eye mask on them to represent the darkness. It was super fun and I like Family Home Evening. Do it.
- We’ve been meeting with some friends and right now our 2 progressing friends are Olivia and Judy (so please pray for them)!
We have been meeting (and by we, I mean millions of missionaries) with Olivia for months on end, and we have taught her pretty much all the lessons. She has accepted everything, but she won't read the Book of Mormon, and she feasts on "anti-Mormon" information and is constantly asking us about it. Pretty much, her main issue is that because she's researched so many religions, she wants to have all her questions answered and wants to know everything that she wonders about.
Obviously, we've explained the concept of faith more times than I can count, but it never really sunk in. However, on Tuesday we had a lesson planned to invite her to be baptized, and if she didn't accept, we felt we should drop her. Much to our surprise though, she brought her friend Alex along, who was interested in learning more about our church. Throughout the entire lesson we had with them, she bore her testimony on multiple gospel principles, and pretty much told him that this was the true church. Sister Patea and I were sitting there absolutely gobsmacked as we had never heard about any of this before. Obviously, we haven't dropped her and are excited for our next lesson with her.
Judy is another friend that is progressing, and as soon as she comes to church, we can put her on date. Our last lesson with her was about the Plan of Salvation and the member we had with us bore the most incredible testimony and Judy was just like, "This is all true and makes perfect sense. I want to learn more." Judy is golden and we're figuring out how to get her to church.
Really the fireside was probably the biggest event, and it was super amazing. I'd challenge you all to take a blank Book of Mormon and highlight every instance of pride you see, and then go read the talk, "Beware of Pride" by Ezra Taft Benson. If you think you aren't prideful, you're wrong. Sorry to be harsh, but it's true. I'm prideful (very much so), you're prideful, we're all prideful. We need to stop.
Love you all!
Photographs below :)
Weekly Letter #18: February 3, 2020
4/ 5Oleh -