It does not feel like I talked to ya’ll this week! I was looking at pictures on my camera trying to decide what to send and thought oh I already sent the photos of the Christmas party…then I realized oh, that was this week! lol It was awesome talking to ya’ll and I am so glad that Derek and Rebecca’s wedding went well and everyone enjoyed it! Thank you for the pictures!
Jéssica was baptized this week! It was really a miracle and the Lord was definitely behind it all! On Thursday we were sitting with her and Raquel (the daughter of the Bishop that is the same age) doing FHE with only them because Jéssica’s mom said it would be too confusing with her Catholic background. After we ended the lesson and started playing a game, Jéssica’s mom came out and started saying that her daughter was horrible and that she need to really listen to what were saying and change. I took the opportunity to talk about the difference of the Light of Christ and the Holy Ghost. I told her that for Jéssica to truly follow Jesus Christ, our teachings and change for the better she needed to be baptized and receive the Holy Ghost. That way, the feelings and knowledge of what we taught and she would learn in church would help. I then asked “Can she be baptized?” Her mother automatically said “Yes, I want her to.’ SCORE! We then scheduled the interview and left.
The next day after teaching the last lesson and taking Jéssica and Carlos to the Chapel to be interviewed, we returned with them and asked their parents to sign the baptism form. It was a breath holder moment. Her mom looked at it, read it, lectured Jéssica about the importance of the baptism commitment in following Christ, and then called over her husband to have his opinion. Before this time we never talked to her father about it because he was not home or did not want to talk to us. We waited in anticipation as he looked over the form and said “If she wants to be baptized she can, it is her decision.” Whew! Jéssica’s mom then signed the paper and gave us permission to start teaching Carlos, Jéssica’s younger brother.
Then on Saturday, we received a call from the grandmother of Jéssica, who after much beating around the bush asked her true question which was, “Will you make Jéssica go to another country after she is baptized?” Apparently this was something that they heard a lot from others. After assuring that we would not take her to another country and that everyone in our ward minus us were Brazilian and from Manaus and the importance of Eternal Families she softened and said that we had her full report. She especially liked that Jéssica would grow to be a good young woman and marry in the Temple to a good young man.
To me, this phone call was a testimony builder as we are able to promise that she would grow to be a good young woman and marry someone with values with confidence. Especially in the world today these promises of her becoming the best young women would seem false or lie. How wonderful that we have the courses and programs that allow this to happen.
We talked to the Bishop on Friday and decided to have the baptism Sunday after Church. Which was a good idea because Jéssica and her mother came together. It helped a lot of questions that her mom had about the church. Her grandmother showed up for the baptism. They were crying tears of joy and taking photos like no other before and after the service. They are truly an elect family and we will be working hard this next few weeks and transfer to help them stop smoking and drinking.
I included a picture of what she wrote herself on the blackboard after the baptism and a photo of her with her mom and grandma.
The other photos are just for fun. Sister Cortez found out that she has parasites in her stomach so I did division on Saturday with a young woman in our ward. We were able to finish up all the work in Parque 10 de Novembro which is great as we will be having the ward split on the 20th of this next month and other missionaries will be placed there. Before we left I had fun making bubbles, apparently big bubbles are not very common. Henrick, the member’s nephew really enjoyed them.
The other is a photo of the Christmas party we went to. The bottle that might look like wine is actually Integral Grape Juice, which I love because it tastes like the juice Grandma and Grandpa Janis makes. So it is like visiting Grandma’s house on break from school. 🙂
So that is pretty much my week! LOL Feliz Ano Novo!
Eu vós amo!!!