Week 1, Transfer 9
It's SUCH a glorious day here in Leeds! The sun is out (and it's actually hot!), the sky is blue, and people in England are usually more happy when the weather's nice..so it's a bonus for everyone really!
President has called us twice in the past 2 weeks to congratulate us on how hard we've been working. It's always really refreshing and lovely to get a call with encouraging words from him.
We currently have 3 people scheduled for baptism, 2 on the way, and we received a referral from elders in Manchester Mission a few days ago. We called them straight away. They've been taught almost everything - Alice and Lee, and they have FIVE children ranging from 8 years old down to 1 years old. We're calling them today and setting up an appointment for this week and they might be at church on Sunday :)
Tango and Aaron are still scheduled. We're seeing Tango tonight and we had a great lesson directed by the spirit about prophets and apostles and receiving inspiration/revelation from God. Chinese people are very interested in prophets and apostles I've found..and the Plan of Salvation.
KAARON IS BACK ON THE RADAR! Boy oh boy has that been stressful. So we went a whole 5 week transfer without ever going to see him. No reason why, we just never seemed to get around there to see him, but we saw him at church because he comes every week and he comes to mutual on Tuesday. The best part about it is he brings all his friends haha he's the best. SO..we see him last week with Victor (his best mate) and Lawrence (VIctor's 19 year old sister who we know really well) and we touched base with him. This is round three for me with Kaaron. I really hope this is the last round we'll have. He's been almost baptized once, passed his interview and all..and he's been so close to baptism so many times..but this time feels different. He says he's ready to be baptized, but he wants his family to support him and I don't think they know anything about the church so it's a bit foreign for them. They're less inclined to support Kaaron because of that, So we've been praying SO much that Heavenly Father will just enable us to speak to his Mum Sharon for longer than a minute about Kaaron's baptism and about the church just so she understands a little bit. She has no interest in the church but she professes to be Christian. She always seems like she's in a rush and never wants to speak to us, but she's not rude or anything. I've known her for ages now. Kaaron was interviewed for baptism on Sunday (deja vu) and he passed. Now we're just waiting for him to talk to his Mum and we're going to as well. The first miracle of today was we went around to see Kaaron's Mum this morning quickly before we emailed, she was in but she was cleaning and she was just about to take Kaaron to an appointment. We had a really brief conversation with her while she stuck her head out of her bedroom window upstairs (I seem to have a habit of teaching and talking to people while they poke their head out the window) and she basically said she needs to talk to Kaaron about being Mormon because her family are Christians, not Mormons etc etc. Then it clicked..she doesn't even know we're Christian! We told her straight away that we're Christian and Jesus Christ is the center of everything we teach and believe. She actually warmed up a little bit and said we can come back later and sit down and have a chat. As we left I whispered to Sister Zurcher 'PROGRESS!'. Man..so happy. So we're cutting out P-day short but we don't even care because Kaaron has been going to church for a year and all that's stopping him is support from his family, but they don't know anything about the church anyway and we have a golden opportunity FINALLY to talk to his Mum. We're really hoping it goes well. If it does, Kaaron will be baptized either tomorrow night or next Tuesday because it's mutual and all his friends will be there anyway.
We also have the Manuel family. I love that family. Joseph Manuel lives up in Scotland and Carmelita and him are not together anymore but they have 3 kids and they live with her here in Leeds. The two boys, Igor and Denilson really want to get baptized. They've been members for 14 years or something but Carm doesn't come anymore. We got Joseph's number and called him a few days ago and got his side of the story of why the boys aren't baptized yet. Moral is, he's going to Portugal for a few months in 2 weeks, so we're hoping the boys can be baptized before he goes because Carm really wants him to baptize the boys and of course Joseph and the boys want that as well. So we're really busy and under the gun at the moment because so many baptisms in such a short space of time and we need to coordinate so many things! It's pretty uncertain at the moment but it's hopeful. We're just going one day at a time with this. We're seeing them on Thursday. Carm's home teacher is Elder Dryden in our ward, he got called as a Seventy over a year ago now I believe. The Dryden's are the best. They are SUCH good missionaries and fellow-shippers. We're having tea at their house and then going to the Maneul's afterwards.
The work is going at a pretty fast pace at the moment. Keeping us on our toes and busy!
Heavenly Father's hand is in everything. I see it in everything and I know He's guiding us.
Oh one more thing! (well, there are hundreds but I need to get going soon!). We went to Susan Magg's (recent convert's) house for Sunday dinner yesterday She did a lovely roast with all the trimmings and things. Traditional English Sunday dinner! She had her son Ashley and daughter Chloe there, and Ash's friend Sam was there again. Sam has such a kind and loving believing spirit, he got caught up with the wrong people when he was younger and was influenced a lot which left him in jail for a few years. He just seems like he needs love and he needs a relationship with his Father in heaven. He has believes and he always sticks around for our message at the end of our visits. We taught the Plan of Salvation using the puzzle/diagram thing that my sister Emily gave to me to use for my mission (it's helped LOADS by the way Em!). We taught him and Chloe (Chloe isn't too interested in the church atm, she just turned 18 and is trying all the things of the world but she's got a good heart) and of course Susan was there too. Ashley left and went outside to see to some of his mates but Sam stayed. We thought that was really significant. He asked us questions and he wanted to know how to get to the celestial kingdom. We told him that what we've done in our past doesn't define who we are. It's through the saving grace of the Atonement where we can feel whole and clean. He looked like he was about to cry at some points. He's a really good lad...you can just tell when you talk to him or you're around him. He also said he might come to church on Sunday. He has so much potential. There's a reason we met him again and keep running into him at Sue's house. Again, I can see Heavenly Father's hand in this great work. I love it! No matter how great or small the miracle, it's still a miracle, and Heavenly Father is manifesting his love for us in EVERYTHING he does.
Well, that's me done. There's heaps I could talk about, but I'm off to enjoy the sunshine and smile at everyone!
Love you all lots and lots