Monday, April 29, 2013

Beira - Week 53

Uma semana de desafios. Mas, valeu a pena.

Hello family!
Im glad to receive the letters, and it looks like everyone is doing well back home!
As for me, we had an awesome week! But to be honest, it was one of the hardest weeks Ive had on the mission so far. But that means I have a chance to learn from things that happen and become even better!
First of all, Crayton and Albertina... were dropped. I am completely devastated. Some of the most spiritual lessons I've had on the mission, have been with them. It was a family that was completely prepared by the Lord. I know that it was a special family that we were supposed to find and that would change my life. They humbly accepted the gospel in their lives. The only problem is, marriage. They arenºt willing to get through this difficult process of paperwork. She has documents in other parts of the country, and they said they just canºt do it right now. They have such a desire to be baptized and they understand that this is the true Church. If it wasnºt for these challenges, they would have already been baptized! The plan was to have all paperwork completed this week, buy they brought these problems up really late. They understand they are living in sin, and said that they will not leave the church. Itºs justthat our time as missionaries is precious, and we only have time to work with those who can do these things NOW! So we are taking a break with them, and they wonºt be getting baptized this next week like they were supposed to. After the lesson, I was a complete mess. I couldnºt stop crying for 10 minutes. I just love that family. if it was possible, I would trade in my baptism and give it to them! Weºll see what happens over the next few weeks, if they decide to get their heads on straight.
Our week was an emotional rollercoaster. Which is pretty much how every day and every week is. A lot of disappointing things happened, but a lot of good things happened as well!
We found two money families this week. One is Joao e Rute (John and Ruth), and the other is Andre e Philomena. We contacted Joao in the road, and then visited him and his wife the following day. We had a great lesson on the Restoration, as we tried to identify their personal needs. They understood it well, and commited to be baptized in the first lesson. The first few months on my mission, I never gave many baptismal invites. But Iºm learning with time, and I never teach a first lesson without giving a baptismal invite. Itºs super nice, and helps the investigator understand how they can change their lives. Joao e Rute came to church, and seemed to like it. Weºll be going over there tonight as well.
And as for Andre e Philomena, they were a reference from Lucinda, who is the women that we baptized last transfer that participated in the wedding. She is a saint. If there is anyone in the world that is keeping their baptismal covenant, it is Lucinda. She gives tons of references, and loves doing missionary work! She wants other families to have the peace of mind that she now has. Itºs cool.
So last night at 6 o'clock we went over to Nharingue and Lucindaºs to go teach this neighbor of theirs. Which is Andre and Philomena. He has never participated in any church, and she goes to some other church every Sunday. As we explained who we are, and our purpose as missionaries we started to teach them the Restoration. It was nice to have Lucinda their as well, because they were able to feel more comfortable. As we were talking about Joesph Smith, I noticed that Andre was paying a lot of attention, and was getting a little emotional. We then asked him how he was feeling. As he tried to express himself, he got even more emotional saying that he was grateful for the messgae they had recieved. In the middle of this strong spirit, we gave the baptismal invite, and they both accepted. It was a cool experience. I donºt know if he really understood the importance of the Restoration, or even all the little details. But he felt something that he had never felt before, and Iºm so grateful he felt it. Iºll keep you updated on their progress and what happens this week. 
We did a fast as well for another investigator family Jojo and Luisa. They came to church the first Sunday, but he wants to be certain that this is the true church. A great young couple that would help the church out a lot. I know heºll receive an answer. I have such a solid testimony on fasting. 
We also got to watch general conference on Saturday and Sunday! It was unbelievable. Each conference gets better and better. We played it at the church with the branches Beira 1 and Beira 2. Itºs a little weird watching it with the translation, but it's not too bad. The talks were very direct and very powerful, I especially loved President Eyring's powerful testimony of our Savior Jesus Christ. It was also very cool to watch Elder Neil L. Andersen's talk with the people of Mozambique. As he talked about it and showed the pictures, the Spirit was so strong in the Beira chapel. I was surrounded by couples who were in those pictures! Cool experince for them, and the Spirit gave mt the reassurance that this really is the Lordºs work. And Iºm so grateful to be a part of it. And Mormon Tabernacle Choir was unreal. Although it was a little weird to see so many white people in just one shot. Iºm completely obsessed with the choir. I cannot wait to watch Music and the Spoken Word for the next time. The BYU choir was also very impressive.
Time is flying by, and so Iºm trying to live in the moment. I understand that 2 years is absolutely no time at all. To be honest, I am dreading the time when all this comes to an end. So for now, we are working! I'm so happy to be this this amazing work so that I can help this amazing people. I love them. I don't have any doubts that this is The Lord's church. If it wasn't, all these miracles would not be happening. I love you all so much, and hope you have an amazing week!
Love, Elder Williams