Yeah, so the changes are back. We found out yesterday what´s going to happen tomorrow during the changes. Hopefully our new president arrives well. We´ve been praying and fasting for him so that he can get his visa and arrive in time (hmmm.....sound familiar?) But even without the new president, there were a lot of changes...at least in my zone, I don´t know about the others, I imagine that it was about the same, but who knows, huh?
But first things first.... this week was probably our most effective week up to date in the mission. We taught so many people, found many new investigators and had a couple baptisms this week(I attached some pictures of this baptism). That being said, Elder Javier and I have definitely learned that when things are really going well....we receive the most opposition. Truly, as Lehi said, there is opposition in all things.
Irene is still going strong....and is turning into a Mama Galleta (Literally means Cookie mom, it basically means that the missionaries can drop in whenever they want and she´ll accept them and offer them a bunch of food.) She really amazes me sometimes. She really is a testimony that the work is the Lord´s, not our own. We really didn´t do anything special with her to make her into this strong member, I know that the spirit worked this change in her and in her daughter, and I will be happy to hear in a year from now when she enters the temple.
We´ve been trying to keep contact with the Orea Zavaleta family this week, Unfortunately, we weren´t able to coordinate our efforts with Jorge Montes to have a FHE in their house, and my companion and I didn´t feel comfortable setting an appointment without his help. Unfortunately, Uriel Orea has had some misunderstanding with the Ward Mission Leader, and he´s a little distant right now, and Gaby is working hard like always, and doesn´t want to cause a rift in their relationship. Luckily, both of them still are willing to accept us in their home and are interested in listening to us and eventually being baptized, but right now, they aren´t going to church...so they weren´t baptized this week(which was their baptismal date).
I think I´ve already mentioned a bit about Mariel Graciela Sanchez, her daughter Rebeca, and her son Mauricio. The mother had been listening to the missionaries for a long time, but never had been baptized. She had some conflicts with the ward....and the bishop, and wanted to get baptized in another ward. Rebeca, on the other hand, didn´t have anything against the Ward of Plateros, and wanted to get baptized this Sunday. However, when we talked to Mariel, this week, she told us that she wanted to get baptized this week, but during the week. So we set the date for this Thursday!
It was an interesting experience, because Thursday morning, Hna. Sanchez was having second-thoughts about being baptized. We set an appointment with them that morning. (Also she had apparently not told her daughter Rebeca about the change of date and we ran into some resistance there.) I never thought for the entire world that I would commit(or recommit) someone to be baptized with these words ¨Hna Sanchez, will you be baptized at 8:00 tonight¨ However, all went well, both of them committed to be baptized that night. Elder Javier baptized the mother and I baptized Rebeca. Mauricio attended the service and liked it, but right now his focus is more on the deep doctrine(he keeps asking questions about spirits, Armegeddon and all of that), and less on finding out if the church is true. However we´re going to work harder with them, especially since, neither the daughter nor the mother showed up for their confirmation Sunday(there happened to be a World Cup Game at the same time as our meetings between Mexico and Argentina....in case you don´t know, Mexico lost 3-1, how do I know? How could I not?!) So that was a little blot on our good feelings that we had during the service on Thursday.
Another less than animating experience was Sunday, when Bety didn´t show up for her baptism. However, we were already somewhat aware that this might happen. We had an appointment on Saturday with her, she still was excited about being baptized, but all of her daughters...and her husband were against it. They all had concerns about how she was not going to be able to attend family gatherings, funerals, dance, and do a whole lot of stuff. Unfortunately for her, Bety didn´t know if that was true or not. We were able to resolve some of the doubts of one of her daughters, but her husband and other daughters weren´t there, so we recommitted her to be baptized the next day, hoping that all would go well with her husband.....apparently not. She never showed up, never answered the phone....except once when her husband answered saying that she wasn´t there and basically hung up. (Sigh) so we have a little more work with her.
However, we have been able to find a whole bunch of new investigators, one of them, Daniel Rodríguez, is actually a new/old investigator. He´s been in teaching for about a year off and on with the missionaries. We found his name and address in the area book and wrote them down a long time ago. One day when an appointment fell through, we looked up our list of people and found his name. We thought he was inactive, and when we asked him how long he´d been in the church he told us one year(thinking about how long he´s been in teaching) We then found out that he hadn´t been baptized, but still remembered a lot about our church, and understood a lot. He committed himself to be baptized in two weeks from our first visit, saying that he knew it was important to get it done soon, but wanted enough time to think it through. He has had some doubts changing his religion, but he does have an Aunt and some cousins that are members (so he has family support), and he really wants to find out if it´s true. Unfortunately, he lost his Book of Mormon, so we´re going to bring another one this Tuesday. So I´ve got good hopes for him!
Well, I´m basically our of time. I wish I could say more, but I need to tell you guys about the changes that are going to happen tomorrow. We received the news about the changes yesterday and.....Elder Javier is leaving the area. He´s going to be companions with Elder Beals(who was in the MTC with me, but we never really knew each other.) in Lermo, in the Toluca zone. So he´s leaving the Federal District, Mexico City, and going to Lermo in the State of Mexico. So he´s going be a little far away. And I´m going to get the opportunity to teach my new companion (I can´t remember his name, but he´s also a gringo) about the area of Plateros. Anyway, it will be quite the experience, it´s going to be difficult seeing my companion, trainer, and papi go, but that´s how the mission is, right? Changes happen and you´ve got to take what you got and run with it.
Anyway, that´s the news for this week. I look forward to letting you guys know what happened this week!
Thanks, like always for your prayers in my behalf.
Elder Thomas Blackham