Still alive and doing well, folks.
Elder Ulisses S. Soares came to speak to our mission last Saturday! Originally, Elder Quentin L. Cook was going to come, but he had a priesthood meeting in Shela (Xela) after talking to the missionaries in Quetzaltenango. But Elder Soares was awesome! He speaks Portuguese, English, French, and is learning Spanish. He did really well for not studying very long. He spoke very enthusiastically about opening our mouth to everyone, and being obedient to all rules. It was really good.
Also, for the first time in my life, I sang alto in a choir! We sang a medley of I’ll Go Where You Want Me to Go, Llamados a Servir (Called to Serve), y Como el Ejercito de Helaman (Armies of Helaman) before Elder Soares spoke. For a Latino (and some gringos) choir, it wasn’t horrible. Now I’m practicing alto in sacrament meeting; even though I can almost never find the note, its okay because my awful pitch blends in with everyone else.
We were contacting near the Ocosito (a river in Guatemala) when we came upon a pretty nice house. The only one there was the employee girl that’s 20 years old. She was hesitant to invite us in but then eventually let us enter. We talked to her for a bit about the Restauracion, and it was only after we ended Joseph Smith’s story that she told us she’d been baptized. Most people forget they’ve been baptized or think that if they don’t go to church anymore that they’re no longer a member. But anyway we began to modify the lesson when a baby chick from the garage ran in, wildly squawking and frantically searching for its mother. She ushered it back outside, then when she sat back down, Hna. Goddard started teaching that parable of a hen gathering her chicks, and how no matter where we are in life, if we remember that Christ can bring us (back) to the fold of the gospel, we can have that faith to let Him guide us. It was a super cool analogy and perfect application! The employee is often alone in the house. At one point, she told us she talks to the chickens. “People don’t understand, they think I’m crazy.” While Hna Goddard was pretending like she understood I was silently laughing. Luckily I don’t think she noticed…
Let me tell you about an investigator we have. .. Mauro, divorced father of two, is a really intelligent fellow and is the only one in his family that isn’t Catholic. He’s studied with Jehovah’s Witnesses in the past and has visited a lot of different churches. We’ve presented him and his two kids with copies of the Book of Mormon, and he says that it and the Church are true; however he also says the JWs church is true and that all churches are good. His hesitation in being baptized is because he says its a big commitment and doesn’t want to falter after being cleansed from sin. Overall, its a matter of the heart. He “knows” its true, but doesn’t really know its true with his heart. It all comes down to prayer and asking God if these things are true. Last time we recommited him to pray I shared Ether 12:27, which I had studied in Personal Study that morning (thanks seminary). It talks about turning our weaknesses into strengths, and we said that could happen even after baptism and that were not perfect, but as long as we continally do our best and repent, we will be forgiven and worthy to enter God’s presence. That seemed to resonate with him. We meet again with him tonight! Pray for him to feel the spirit and receive an answer.
Welp, until I write again,