Ezequiel was all prepared. We just had to come in, dust him off, give him the white pants and get him wet!
No but seriously, he already loves going to church, his uncle is a member (and our Ward Mission Leader) and he is a child, innocent and pure. A wonderful bonding week for him and his family. Baptism this week and the marriage of his uncle (our WML) next week and Christmas the next! Timing was perfect.
Miracles of the week: We are teaching a family where the two parents need to be married. They were our first miracle, we challenged them to be married so they can be baptized and they went to start the proper papers the next day!! Hooray! Next, Ezequiel, who we were teaching with his mother (and every one told us she would never listen to missionaries) because his wonderful, faithful example has been a huge window through which the Lord has poured blessings. Seriously, through both sides. His mother, grandmother and aunt are all our new investigators and they are wonderful!
Uh, we had another Rainy day experience. Well, two of them. On Friday, it was cloudy and looked like it was going to rain maybe but Hna Peña and I REFUSED to take umbrellas to carry around all day. We were going to have lunch with the familia Morales that I had told you about with Guillermo. A wonderful couple, who are sadly moving out of our area. We were meeting with them basically to say goodbye for now. It started to sprinkle as we were crossing the road to their house and we ducked under a tree to call them so they could come to the door. Guillermo came to the door with a big smile on his face. He let us in out of the rain that was now coming down hard.
He is such a good man. I told you before i think that he was excommunicated over something that started very small. Like the story of Thomas B Marsh´s wife and the cream. It was heartbreaking to hear the amazing story of his conversion followed directly by his falling away. The story of the missionaries who he had stopped in the street when he was a little drunk one night, who had come to his home once, twice, with him refusing to come to the door when the third time they were supposed to come by and see him, it was an Argentine downpour and Guillermo thought there was no way on earth they would come in the rain. But at 7 o’clock on the dot, there were the elders clapping their hands at the gate. He let them in because of their dedication even through the rain and his family of 10 were baptized. Then an offense was taken and he fell away. He told us about when his daughter left to serve a mission, she asked him if he would go to church again while she was gone. He said he wouldn´t lie and say yes. And he never went.
Friday, when we were sitting in his home with his wife, he looked Hna Peña and I in the eye and said, I´m going to promise you what I wouldn´t promise anyone if I didn´t mean it. I will be baptized again. I will go straighten everything out with the proper authority and I WILL be baptized. Hna Peña and I couldn´t stop the flow of tears as he bore his testimony and we said our goodbyes. I´ll send the pictures he´ll send of him in white.
After that, we got big garbage bags (hence the picture) to RUN to the church because we had to clean the font. It was so out of use that it was dirty and the pump wasn´t working right. The pump to pump OUT the water. So, Hna Peña and I filled it with some water so we could scrub it out but.....the water wouldn´t drain. And it wouldn´t drain and it wouldn´t drain! We tried to fix the pump, but seriously, this is ME we´re talking about. And my companion, I love her for this, is sooo girly. Even she would admit that she is very ´fresa´. :) So we tried filling the pump (like priming it, the story dad loves) and we kept putting water in but when we turned it on, the water would disappear from the pump and NOT from the font. So we filled and filled and filled the pump but it wasn´t working. Come to find that umm....filling the pump? Yeah, it definitely goes right into the font. So we had even MORE water in the font to get out BY HAND. We had a bucket of 16 liters to work with...... 50 bucketfuls later......My arms were so sore from lifting the water up and out of the font that I think I’ll have bigger arms than DANNY. ;) haha it was an experience. But hey, Ezequiel was baptized in crystal clear water :)
Then Saturday we were teaching a lesson when another storm hit. And it was a big one. With thunder and lightning, which made me kind of nervous since I´ve gone so long without such a storm.
Quick story so you know why we didn´t want to take the umbrellas: EVERY TIME, i mean, every SINGLE time we see that it might rain and we take our umbrellas, it doesn´t rain. In fact the moment we have passed the point of no return (to the apartment to put them back) the sun comes out all bright and shiny and we get sunburns. (Well, not me because I use Tahitian Noni lotion with sunblock built in ;) haha) But we somehow work it out that we pass by the apartment again and put them away so it´s not a HUGE headache. But one day, we were going to be away from the apartment all day. We took those umbrellas because it was Definitely going to rain. NOT. We carried them around from 11am to 9pm almost leaving them in every home we entered. People on the street were judging us (more than usual) and one old man look at us, looked up, searching the heavens and said ´que llueve, que llueve! las paraguas estan cerradas!´ Let it rain, let it rain, the umbrellas are left unopened.
Haha Rude! Even the bus driver when were going home for the night made fun of us. ¨get up on the bus and let´s get going because you´ll all get wet!
Not so quick story but hey, it makes me LESS irresponsible for being caught in the rain with nothing to keep my dry. It was really coming down. We were with a member who drove us to the church so we wouldn´t get soaked.
Ok, the streets are cobblestone style but with bricks kinda. Hard to describe, I’ll take a picture. But the curbs are BIG and I was in a skirt that doesn´t have as much freedom of movement around the knees so it was an absolute miracle I could jump the river that had formed in front of the church. Again, right before the baptism, the rain stopped and sun came out. I guess the Lord likes to have ALL of Villa Urquiza clean before a new soul is baptized.
I´d like to announce that Hna Peña and I will be entering in marathons when we get back home. We will be champions of the world. We are seriously getting so fast at walking it´s a little unbelievable. We´ll be walking a block a minute and then look up and see that we´ve walked too far! haha
About Carmen: She is getting baptized this Saturday. She is an amazing story that will have to wait until next week. But I was reading today a story just like hers in Alma 22. She is like Lamoni´s father in verse...11? I think. She was ready to believe and couldn´t wait for more. We asked her how she felt yesterday at church about being baptized and she said, can it be this Saturday or do i have to wait until after Christmas? Those are the sweetest words a missionary can hear!!!! Haha Love it!
I love this work. I love the gospel. i know my Savior lives. I love him. I am grateful for the sacrifice he made for me and all the world. We are here on the earth to show we can be obedient and dedicated to him. Thank you for your prayers and I ALWAYS feel your love. The night you went to the Forgotten Carols, I had a dream about home. I NEVER remember my dreams but I even told Hna Peña about how weird it was. I feel your love and I hope you feel mine. I pray for you, your health, your strength and for constant guidance from the spirit every day. May you, my family, my loved ones, always have a missionary state of mind. Share your testimony. Be bold. You may be the instrument through which the Lord is working. Don´t let the opportunity pass you by.
Love love love love love,