This week was crazy and amazing! A LOT of work but that's exactly what we are here to do! We have goals in our mission and in our stake here of how many baptisms we wanted this year. We have been praying a lot for direction from the Lord in where to go to find the people that are ready now to enter the Lord´s church and make this important covenant with Him. The Lord has truly blessed us this week with an answer to our prayers.
Two boys, Wenzell and Wesley were both baptized on Saturday and confirmed yesterday. It was very special!!
We had been teaching Wenzell a couple months back because his mom really wanted him to be baptized, but he was unsure about it and said he didn't want to be baptized. We were not about to baptize someone who didn't want to be baptized so we stopped teaching him. Last week as we tried to decide which people we could focus on to help with the goals we felt strongly to teach him again. We went there on Wednesday and had a great lesson with him. We were able to help him understand the importance of baptism and he agreed to be baptized!! So we started planning for Saturday.
We were also trying hard to get Wesley´s dad to let him be baptized but its hard to find him at home. His mom had gone to church with him on Sunday and wanted him to be baptized, but needed permission from her husband. All week we tried to talk to him but it didn't work out. When Saturday arrived we had a meeting with the bishopric and our ward mission leader to plan how we could help his dad accept. We planned to invite them to Wenzell´s baptism and have everyone talk to the dad about all the great programs the church offers, get his permission there, and then interview Wesley to be baptized on Sunday. When we arrived at their house on Saturday afternoon, the dad came to the door and told us he had just gotten home from work and wanted to rest and that they couldn´t let us in right then. We told him we just wanted to talk to him quickly. He came to the gate and we told him that Wenzell would be baptized that night. We were just going to invite him to go, but he thought we were asking him if Wesley could be baptized too. He started saying that Wesley wasn't ready, that he wouldn´t stay strong, that he didnt want him to be forced to do anything. We explained that we weren´t forcing anything and that it was Wesley himself and also his wife that wanted the gospel and wanted to be baptized and that he too would be forcing them to not follow Christ if he forbade the baptism. (We were praying the whole time for inspiration in what to say and the Spirit delivered) His dad looked at us and then called Wesley to come there. Wesley came and his Dad started asking him..."Is this what you want? Do you want to be baptized? etc" Wesley looked his dad straight in the eyes and said "Quero.....Eu Quero!" (I want to...I want to!) His dad looked back at him and started to bawl....He told his son that he could be baptized and that he needed to follow strong. That he needed to follow what his dad says and not what he does (He, the dad, has a lot of problems with alcohol, drugs, smoking, etc) It was a very emotional and spiritual moment. They embraced and we all stayed there crying for a moment. He went back in the house and we continued crying and praying, thanking God for the miracle he had just done for us. We then finished teaching Wesley the lessons he was missing, called President to get his permission to baptize a minor, and called the zone leaders and arranged for them to interview him that night before the baptism. Everything went very well. His mom went too and had a very good experience there. She has a baptismal date for the 8 of January if not sooner. It was truly a miracle how it all happened. I am so grateful to be a member of the True Church of Jesus Christ and to have the Gift of the Holy Ghost.
Its been a very special and emotional/spiritual journey!
I am VERY excited to talk to you all this weekend....AHHHH!! I am worried about how my English will be...its in a very poor state!! But we will just have to rely on the gift of tongues! haha! I will be calling on Friday for 5 minutes to give you the telephone number and hour to call, but let me know right now what time you think is best! Lets try the conference call because our call should be 30-40 minutes according to the mission rules and I think it will be hard to such short time!
LOVE YOU SO VERY MUCH!!! MERRY CHRISTMAS! FELIZ NATAL!!
Sister Erin Knudsen