Sounds like you all had awesome weeks!!!! Kat im so happy Estiwar got baptized :) Dad hope you had a good fathers day! And wow hiking mount timp for youth conference....diligent souls who planned that one... :)
This week was amazing! !! Ill start with the exciting news,,, Samuel came to church again!!! and i might have forgot to mention, he has a baptism date for the 29th, THIS SUNDAY! AND HE GOT INTERVIEWED AND PASSED!! and he is the most solid investigator ever and is like a Samoan version of Morgan!!! AND HES AMAZING!!! and he's getting baptized!!!!!!!!! Wow. Also, Jerry his less active friend came too and we got his records!!! And they are just the best!!! And the ward loves them and is fellowshipping beautifully!! And Sister Stanton and I can't believe our luck that we get to see a baptism together. Heavenly Father is so good to us!!!
So that was definitely the highlight of the week. I wonder if i have written about Samuel very much, i can't remember. He from Samoa but moved to Christchurch New Zealand when he was 15, he has six brothers and three sisters and his family is Methodist. We met them walking on the street, Jerry called us and said "hey sisters!" and we went back to teach them. And they are both wonderful. And we have been able to teach in members homes because a.) its wayyy better that way, and b.) they live in a man cave with other rugby players. Usually we refer to them as "the rugby players"or "the Samoans" because there's not that many Samoans here in Ballina!!! And they are great. Its such a miracle they found us. Every soul is precious!! Samuel agreed to be baptised the first lesson and we set the date the second lesson. Well, my companion set the date if were being specific :-) He has been solid with every commandment and gave up coffee as soon as we taught him. He's a crazy good example of obedience and selflessness. I think about these amazing people that i get the privelige to teach and i love how it says in the white handbook, "when you return home, do not forget the people you have taught. At all times live worthy of their trust." I love that!!!
Sooooooo another highlight of this week is we went on some rescue visits with Sister Deloncrais, we went to see a lady named Marie out in Ewingsdale, a country area. She let us in and she is so lovely. I love doing rescue visits folks. But sometimes they make me sad, when i see people who obviously still have a testimony but don't come to church anymore because they feel pressure to be perfect or like they can't be good enough. If we had to be "good enough"to come to church hardly any of us would qualify! Anywho, she didnt tell us why she was less active or anything but she talked to us about serving in Young Womens and everything and she was just lovely and made friends with Sister D (yay friends) she also gave us bananas!!! from her tree!! Win.
This week we finished up the lessons with Samuel at the Deloncrais' home and also the Grace family (they're and old couple and they run the family history center) and it was great. We also saw the Smiths, they are great and always welcome us in :-) We visited Sister Barrett, less active and she got talking about her baptism and confirmation. We visit taught Sister Fuggle Jr, as we call her, she just moved into the ward and is sick and pregnant. She is lovely. On Saturday we went our door knocking with Siobhan, (i will be impressed if you already know how to pronounce that, "Shivon") a fourteen year old young woman! Door knocking is so fun with members! :-) We met some cool people and these two dudes were hilarious, one of them seriously reminded me of Shaggy, he was like "Hey look were pretty mad atheists here man..." haha. They were nice.
Sometimes i think about faith and how we can keep it. I've visited soooooo many less actives on my mission. In the beginning i would think, wow, why dont they just come back to church? It's true. Or wow they need to get their act together. (warning: judgemental sister schaelling. haha) now when i visit them i see a child of God just like me. Someone who has struggled with the same concerns or trials i have or harder trials and questions. I feel like they are my brother or sister or mom and i want to help them. But its kind of sad!! Because so many times i've seen people stray from the gospel because its "too much"or "too hard"or they feel they are "never good enough"or can never measure up. And i know and even they have probably known, that these feelings definitely do not come from the Holy Ghost, they are still real feelings! And it's not always easy to just brush them off. We need nurturing and visiting/ home teachers to help us, and church each Sunday, to fight the adversary folks.
So missions are the best and i love the Lord :-)