We were very blessed this week. On Tuesday we had lunch with Deividi & Aline, members of the branch, and they introduced us to Georgia, Aline's friend. Georgia is from Santa Maria but had recently moved here (3 months ago). Aline, being the awesome member missionary that she is, had already talked quite a bit about the church to her and brought her to church twice already. After lunch we felt impressed to teach her the Restoration. She is very intelligent and understood everything we taught. As we got to the First Vision we showed her the picture in the pamphlet with Joseph Smith, Jesus Christ, and Heavenly Father:
Before we could say a word she began to cry and the Spirit was very strong in the room. She then said, "it's true, it's true, I know it happened." We quickly gave her the Book of Mormon and invited her to read the last two paragraphs of the introduction. When she read, "Those who gain this divine witness from the Holy Spirit will also come to know by the same power that Jesus Christ is the Savior of the world, that Joseph Smith is His revelator and prophet in these last days, and that The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is the Lord’s kingdom once again established on the earth," she began crying again and could barely finish because of the tears running down her face. She was just waiting for us to invite her to be baptized. We set her date to be that Saturday, and she chose Deividi to baptize her.
We kept visiting her during the week to teach her a few more things and we were very surprised at how much the Lord had already prepared her. She had absolutely no addiction or problem with the Word of Wisdom, Law of Chastity, or any other commandment whatsoever. When told that maybe there wouldn't be as many people at her baptism due to the short notice she told us,"it doesn't matter how many people are present, what matters is that my sins be washed clean."
Later she told us how as a natural consequence of the presence of the Spirit, she felt she needed to make a few small changes in her life, such as delete a few pictures and friends on Facebook, ect. We had said nothing about this, but because she had a broken heart and contrite spirit she felt the desire to live the cleanest life possible now that she was entering into the way and getting a second chance to start anew. I know that the Atonement is real. It has a cleansing power that can be found in no other place in the universe.
As we were filling up the font for Georgia the church had a water shortage, so we tried thinking of diverse ways to fill it up in a few short hours. Even though we had many interesting ideas (place buckets under the rain, use the emergency fire hose that is connected to the same water system, ect.), the font only reached the halfway mark. Even still, it was enough to baptize. Georgia was full of energy when she arrived and could barely wait any longer to enter the water. She was baptized a member of the true Church on Saturday, March 12, 2016, and never looked back.
|Georgia, Deividi, and Aline|
Lucas came with us on Friday to visit our investigators. I was surprised but he lasted all day with us without becoming tired. He told us how he'd made a blog about the church that very morning and shared the 20 minute movie on the Restoration already. He's sharing scriptures from the Book of Mormon on Facebook, read all the way to chapter 25 of 2 Nephi, and all his neighbors have told us that he likes to blast Mormon Tabernacle Choir and other church music on the new speakers he has.
On Sunday we had the District Conference in Gramado with President Campos. Everything went smoothly in taking our investigators to the church there. After an inspiring 2 hours, we held a baptismal service for Suanno and Suan, Suana's two younger brothers. Their whole family came to watch with many of the members and Sister Campos.
|Suan and Suanno|
|The view from our window|