The other missionaries in Lawrence have been teaching a man for a little over 5 months now; he was baptized on Saturday, and yesterday he was confirmed a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. It was really special for him and all of us, but for me it was pretty special because I got to interview him...in Spanish...oh and not just any Spanish - Dominican Spanish! Haha.
Ya, I've been having a bit of a rough time with the Spanish out here; the most difficult things for me is just understanding what people say - I can speak and read decently, but I can barely understand anything they say - especially over the phone. And it's always different, like it's easier or harder to understand different people; many come from different countries with different accents and slang, and they all speak different ways. ANYWAYS, amidst all of this, though, I was able to hold a successful interveiw and understand most everything I heard - it was amazing! It was so special too for me to be the one who got to really talk with someone about their repentance, conversion, and testimony, and recommend them as one ready to make their first covenant with our Heavenly Father.
His baptism went really well - didn't have any problems (except for the baptismal font doors were jammed shut for a while, lol), but otherwise it was very successful and most of us missionaries had at least one investigator there, too! Oh, plus the Derry Sisters got to bring one of their Sspanish-speaking investigators to the baptism, so it was super fun for me to get to have my whole district back together again for an evening - it felt like a family reunion. Also! there was a sweet little miracle before the baptism. Elder Blad and I were going to a lesson to teach an older lady for the first time. We had a member coming to meet us, but when we got there, we had a bunch of confusion on the phone with him about where we were exactly and how to get to the appointment. Well then the lady didn't even answer her door or phone, so now the member was a bit annoyed. Right as we were explaining to him that we had no one else that was available for us to meet with, but that we would appreciate a ride to the church anyways for the baptism, we got a call from the Lawrence 2 Elders. They explained that the baptismal candidate needed a ride for the baptism (HIS baptism!). We asked the member and he begrudgingly drove to the apartment. When we got there we asked him why he couldn't drive his car, he said that his battery died. What!? He had just driven us home the night before, and he said his didn't leave any lights or anything on... Well what perfect timing it was that we just so happened to have a member with us, who had an extra seat in his car, and was able to get us all there in time for the baptism. It is so crazy to me how almost every time someone is getting baptized, something happens that would normal cause trouble or make it more difficult for the baptism to go through, BUT in every case, the Lord will provide a way for the baptism to be successful if the candidate has faith and desires it so - even if it means having a solid appointment fall through :) oh and yes, the member was happy again after he realized how he was the helping hand in bringing this to pass ;)
Well everything else has still been going pretty great here. A woman we are teaching is still doing very well in her progress, but it's tough because she can't set a baptismal date because she hasn't figured out if/when she's getting married to her boyfriend - so we're kinda at a stand still there, but at least she's still solid in coming to church, meeting with us, etc. One the men we are working with won't make it for his baptismal date, and he's probly dropping out on us, but at least two others are still on the right path! One of them who wasn't able to make it to the baptism, so after church yesterday we showed him the baptismal font and he said he immediately got chills - then he said, "Man, I can't wait for the day I get in there!" We are so excited for him - haha, last night before our lesson with him, he and Elder Blad were talking about sports and this investigator said, "ya baseball is something I think I would miss a lot for 2 years, but it'll be alright, I'm sure it would be worth it". Ya, talk about SOLID!
We're starting up a new thing this week where we will go out on a 4-splits with the members (priest-age men and up), for 2 appointments each on Wednesday evenings. We're hoping to be able to cover more ground at the same time, get more member lessons, and continually help the ward grow in their desire to do missionary work. Also, we are doing another superblitz - this time for Methuen 2 to get their area up and running faster. I look forward to telling you all about how those go next week!
From Lawrence with love,
Elder Dustin Carr