This week was full of exciting things...and sad...and stupid....and a whole new adventure just waiting around the bend! First we were talking a lot with Maria de Luz...who we tried to mark for baptism...she is like 75 and we discovered she had 80,000 euros of debt which is about 105,000 dollars. It has run up and now she is going to be paying it off for the next 7 years living on like 30 bucks a month for food. She gets a retirement fund thing that is like 1,750 but 1,720 automatically goes to the bank and different people for her debts. It is ridiculous. She wanted to be baptized so bad. She cried like 3 times in our lesson when we were trying to convince her that she can pay tithing. We brought the district leader on Saturday to interview her and see if really she can´t pay tithing or what was the deal. We did a division and Elder Roundy went with the DL to talk to her while I went to the church.
This is where the story gets AMAZING!! I was at the church with Paulo who is a less active member that we helped come back and he just received the priesthood. Well I ended up teaching a lesson to him and his friend Alex. We were talking about the Gospel of Jesus Christ. And when we got to the part about baptism I told him about how Friday Roundy and I were praying and we felt that he needed to be baptized on the 20th. It was scary cause it was just me and a less active member who was in prison for 4 years cause he shot someone and I was inviting this man to baptism...wow it was super cool! I told him that one thing I love is that we have a loving Heavenly Father who already told Roundy and I one thing. So if he wants to know we can pray and he could feel the same thing. So we did and we each offered a prayer, first Paulo, then me then Alex. Once Alex ended he said a phrase that I won´t ever forget. "I feel very very hot inside...what is it?" I proceeded to explain that was the spirit and that God was giving him an answer to his prayers! It was awesome! Elder Roundy returned from his lesson right after that and we proceeded to explain that he has to come to church twice and that he has to start living the commandments. It was awesome! Really with God´s help we can do anything!
Unfortunately today is transfers and I am getting transferred so I won´t get to see the fruit of my labors and see his baptism but Roundy will get his FIRST baptism of his mission! I am stoked for him! I am going to be serving in Palmela which is sorta up by Lisbon. I don´t know much about the area but I know that its big city and its out of the Algarve. I also will be serving with another elder from the MTC, Elder Levitre who is kind of a strange cookie. It will be an adventure. I will be traveling up their tomorrow. So for the first time I will be serving outside of the Algarve!
I am glad to hear Parker is doing well!! Also glad to hear the family is doing great and that the Bushnell Bed and Breakfast is still in business! As far as my birthday, I am running low on white shirts. I wiped out 3 here in Portimao the other day. But I can buy them here really easy so i don´t need you to send them. I don´t know what I want but I will let you know next Monday. I will think about it on my bus ride!
I love you guys!!
Monday, March 14, 2011