Monday, July 29, 2013

First Baptism...In a Swimming Pool??

This week settled down compared to adjusting to missionary work and the schedule of last week. One thing I've quickly learned is that everyone seems to leave for the summer, so it's been difficult to reach people. They all take off to Guatemala, England, Canada, California, or Utah. I bet there's even people who decide to settle on some random Island out in the Ocean for the summer and call it a vacation.  However, although many are away, the Lord has compensated for the struggles faced. We have been able to meet with some solid people in the ward, continuing to help them be the best missionaries they can be.

Home where Babe Ruth lived
I've also discovered how diverse Waltham is. There are many from Haiti (Guiriline and her family, for instance), as well as Uganda, France, and more. There are polar backgrounds and opposites in how much income people have. 

We've not only taught near Babe Ruth's old home and other nice areas, but we've also been in homes where families have unstable jobs, living on little food, and struggling to get by.

However, there are many of them whose faith amazes me. They still hold strong to the gospel in their lives with a brighter hope in Christ.

At our district meeting on Friday, we celebrated Christmas in July with Christmas hymns, Christmas decor, and talked about the gifts each of our companionship's could offer to Christ to draw our district closer together as a Zion. You may call us weird but Christmas in July is not a problem. :)

Christmas in July District Inservice Mtg
Sister Gledhill and I taught Sarah the Plan of Salvation. It took some time and energy but I'm glad she understands it now.

Remember how I mentioned we were going to attend Jose Smith's baptism? First of all, they found out his dad's name is Jose Smith. Ohhh mercy "Joesph Smith Jr.'s" baptism is one I will never forget...:)

The swimming pool where Jose was baptized

Sister Gledhill and I got to the church right before the baptism was about to begin. Elders Wilhelmsen and
Rushforth from our district came to us, with horrified looks. They woke up at 4 am and arrived at the church to fill up the font since it takes 3 hours to fill. So right at 9 AM, they checked the font to discover all the water was gone! The drain got sucked under somehow! 

After attempting to fill it up, not knowing what to do, Bishop White told us to all head to his house--Jose's baptism would take place at his swimming pool! Ahh I was actually thrilled to witness it! I had heard stories of baptisms in rivers or hot tubs but holy smokes this was real! 

We all headed to Bishop's shmancy backyard, where we all sat on cushioned lawn chairs in front of the pool. Sister Gledhill and I asked a worker with his loud machine next door to stop temporarily. So there at the bishop's pool, the baptism took place. We sang hymns and heard some remarks afterwards. The spirit was strong and Jose said how wonderful and clean he felt. So there, folks. Saturday morning I was able to witness "Joseph Smith Jr.'s" baptism in a swimming pool. :)
Bishop White baptizing Jose
And ohhh Guiriline...sweet joy. :) She truly loves the Book of Mormon now. We followed up with her on Saturday. She read her "homework" we assigned her (2 Ne 31-32) and brought up at first how it talks about baptism. She was amazed that she never realized that Christ was baptized as an adult, not a baby. She was raised Catholic while she lived in Haiti and asked us if her baptism went to waste. We explained how and why babies are not held accountable until age 8. We also taught about how faith requires action, repentance, what covenants are and their importance, and how baptism is the key first step to gaining eternal life. Guiriline knows the Book of Mormon is true and has felt the spirit in her life, so she wants to pray earnestly to know if baptism is the right decision for her, not for anyone else, and that it's truly what Heavenly Father wants for her. We tried to set a date but she wants to wait it out. We left her to read in Alma about faith and we are praying hard for her. She is on the right track! She even came to all of church for the first time yesterday and loved it :) She loved the spirit she felt and felt included by everyone in the ward. I'm sure she will come again.

Other quick updates:

I gave my first talk in the ward yesterday, which was on Charity.

Sister Gledhill and I are contacting members left and right, as much as we can, to help this missionary work progress. 

Much love,

Sister Roy

Good Ending toAnother Eventful Day

Ok, line of the week....

First of all, I have realized how crazy Guiriline's home can be. When we gave our lesson on Saturday, there were a lot of distractions taking place at once. When we started to read from the Book of Mormon, an annoying fly was buzzing around. Guiriline stood up, saying, "I'll take care of this." We thought she would pull out a fly swatter, but instead whipped out this large electrical cage to draw in flies and zap them. She said "That's better." as she placed it on the floor next to her.

We continued with our lesson.

When Sister Gledhill asked, "What do you think the Book of Mormon is teaching?"
Guiriline responded, "It's teaching about baptism."
"What do you think it's telling you?"
"That it's a good thing."
Then... "ZZZZZZZZ!!" the sound of a fly being electrocuted with a bright green flash, as a weird burnt smell filled the room.

Sister Gledhill then said, "What do you think the bug is telling you about baptism?"...
It was too great of a moment to not share! At the time it seemed a little awkward but looking back it was pretty funny.

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