Thanks for the letter. This has been one of the best ones in a while.
Truman, the sports, the apostate missionaries, team crush, classic. So Alyssa has not been going on any real dates though? Hopefully she will enjoy working as a lifeguard. My only advice is don't work at Trico. I loved my job and the people there, but they are a really bad influence.
I can't belive that A) you are playing that aggresive and B) you lost a game!? What happened? I'm gonna fly home next week if you guys don't pick it up.
And ya, that is really dodgy what those missionaries are doing. That is just what we call wasters. Especially if they are hanging out with a cute 16 year old girl and her mom under those circumstances...
someone needs to sort them out.
Okay, the AP's are with us. Simmons and White, just like the good old days. It's a long story. But pretty much, there was a mission leadership conference on friday they flew us in for. And then I wanted to go to Slough for the baptism of the Baral's and President was going to send the AP's back with Elder Martins to work Guernsey until sunday night when I flew back. Then Thursday at 3, 3 hours before our flight was supposed to leave, they still hadn't bought our tickets, and Martins got a phone call. When he hung up, he told me that we weren't going to the conference anymore. I flipped out and started making some phone calls. I got ahold of the office elders, the airport people, sorted out investigators to start driving us around. I eventually just bought the tickets myself over the phone and got to the airport just in time to catch the flight. It was REALLY expensive. But I then talked to President and got his approval for the mission to reimburse everything. So I will be getting over 500 dollars reimbursed this week, but I have no way of getting it back into my CIBC account. I might just hold on to it until the end of my misison. I don't really know what else to do.
But all of this was worth it. Coming back for the weekend was seriously one of the best choices I have made on my mission. This last week I had been in constant contact with the Barals, Pettersen, and the senior couple about how things were going. The baptists, anti-mormon stuff, alcohol, family pressure, friends, it just seemed like everything on earth and hell was fighting against getting these people baptized. I got back Friday night and went to see them. Dumbaru was abducted by the baptists. He has been drinking all week. They took him up to Yorkshire, for some baptist conference up there. At first I was really mad, but I have since realized that it was necessary, and all just part of the plan. I think the one thing I have learned from the whole Baral thing is that God always has a plan. The week before I left Slough I was just so down. Everything was unravelling then with the Barals, after everything we had been through, and I just felt like shutting down. My faith was shaken at times throughout this process.
But somehow everything just came together at the end. I need to log off and log back on. I will send this message.
As I was saying. Until Friday, Luna was not going to be baptized. She was concerned about all her friends at the baptist church, she wasn't sure about why Joseph Smith was a prophet, like how the BoM proved him to be a prophet. She was worried about her Hindu friends and family in Nepal. All sorts of problems. But I talked her into taking the interview anyways. She did, and she passed. Saturday night was then one of the most intense and spiritual teaches of my mission. We went over at 7 for dinner, with the Woods. The Woods left at 8, and I taught them, but mostly Luna, about the Restoration as taught in the Bible and the BoM. I was so glad it is a topic I have studied before.
By 9, Luna was understanding, but still said she didn't want to be baptized. I can be a bit stubborn, and I just told myself we weren't leaving that house until she committed. For the next hour and a half, I just tried everything. Starting with getting Lukas and Pettersens greenie to stop speaking. Me and Pratigya went at Luna with everything. She is also stubborn. She twice said she refuses to be baptized. Pratigya at one point just told us to give up and go home, she wasn't going to budge. But eventually, even though it was like 1030, she finally stopped and just thought. It was dead silent, you could have heard a pin drop. For like 2-3 minutes. And then she looked up and said she would do it. It was one of the best moments of my mission.
Then Sunday was even better. We went over at 830 and prayed with them, and then they got picked up for Church. I'll tell you all about it some day, but I don't think email can really do justice to how church and the baptism went. One of the most sacred experiences I have ever had. But it all worked out. They were all baptized, and were all so happy. We went to members house after and had a BBQ, with the Barals, and then I went home and got picked up and flew back to Guernsey by myself. The AP's picked me up there, and I went to bed. I was exhausted. It seriously has felt like a war this last week. I don't think that the problems are over, or that things with the baptists or Dumbaru are going to stop now, but I think that this was a big step.
It taught me that no matter how bleak things may look, God has a plan and he is in control. Things work out how he wants them to.
So that was my week. There really isn't much else to say about it, and I also need to go because an investigator is picking us all up to go walk these really nice cliff/ocean paths along the coast. So I hope you guys all have a great week! I wish I could send the photos, but the computers here don't have the capability.
Love Elder Steed