¿Comó están mis amigos? ¿Están celebrando esta temporada navideña de alguna manera especial? ¡Regocijen en el nacimiento de nuestro Salvador!
Lots of good stuff going on this week! We are helping to spread the word for the Christmas iniciative of the church. In Spanish, it's called "Ilumina el Mundo" and it involves giving service every day for the 25 days leading up to Christmas. We started it off last Thursday with a district service project and we painted the house of one of the bishops in our stake. Christmas is a time for service! A time to remember Christ through our thoughts as well as our actions.
We continue to see so much progress in each one of our investigators. I am seeing success like I have never seen before in my entire mission. I love these people so much and I am so happy to be here helping them and sharing something that will bless their lives forever!!!
Last night, we went to teach the Meza family, a family of investigators that Elder Garcia and I found and started teaching last transfer. They are progressing, little by little. Last night, we had planned a FHE with them and we invited a member, a recently returned missionary from Brasil, to come with us. I had told them that I was going to make Arroz con Leche for them for the FHE. It took a long time to make the Arroz con Leche, but it turned out really well in the sense that there were lots of people there. They had invited their sister-in-law, neice, and cousin. We chatted with them and won their confidence and shared a short spiritual thought about scripture study. And my Arroz con Leche turned out really well and they all liked it a lot. They were impressed that I knew how to make it, because many of them didn't know how to. I'm excited to make Mexican food for y'all when I'm home. :)
Last week, we had an amazing lesson with them and we saw that they are starting to really seriously accept and think on the things that we are telling them. We read 2 Nephi 31 with them and then we asked what they understood from that chapter. They mentioned that they understood the importance of baptism. Then Ana, the daughter, asked us, "So do you guys believe that baptism in your church is the only baptism that allows us to get into Heaven?" We responded quite simply, "Yes." And then we explained about the power and authority that was restored to Joseph Smith. We also talked about how Jesus had to go to John the Baptist to be baptized by that power and authority, not just anyone could have done it. Ana's mom, Tere, then said, "And Jesus was 30-years-old when he got baptized, not a baby." Then Ana, who believes very strongly in the Catholic Church, said, "You guys are right. And you know what? The baptism of babies isn't right, that's not the way that Jesus did it. The Catholic Church is wrong on that." And then we continued on with the conversation. But that, in itself is a miracle, because that was a very big step for Ana because she is beginning to see what makes us different from all the other churches. They are beginning to feel what we feel and see what we see. They have come to church one time and they love listening to us, and we are hoping that they soon will be baptized too.
We got a call on Sunday night from the sister missionaries in Padierna. Elder Walker answered and they asked for me. I answered and they said, "Elder Jarrett, we just want to inform you that Diana Herrera is getting baptized and she's asked that you baptize her. You've got a baptism on December 17th." That made me very happy to hear that. Diana Herrera was an investigator that I taught when I was in Ajusco. She always told us that she wanted to get baptized and that she wanted me to be the one to baptize her, but then she never got baptized in my time there and I thought, Oh well, someone else will arrive and finish teaching her and baptize her. I ran into Diana a few months later in the Metro when I was secretary in Coyoacan and she reminded me, "Hey, when I get baptized, you're going to baptize me." I laughed and thought it was funny that she still remembered that she had told me that. But now it's for real! She's listened to the missionaries for a long time and now she's ready and she's getting baptized! Yay!
This Saturday, the man I wrote you about last week, Hector Aguilar, is getting baptized! He told us last week that the reason he has decided that he is now ready to be baptized is that, last Sunday, he finished reading the entire Book of Mormon!!! We were so happy to hear his experience and know that, in the moment that he finished reading the book, he knew that baptism was right. The power of the Book of Mormon is incredible!!!
I hope all is well and that you're enjoying this Special Christmas Season! I love you all!!! Have a Wonderful Week!!! I'll write again next Friday!