Wow, that sounds like an eventful week. Happy Birthday, mom! Of course I was wishing that I could have been there to celebrate too. I´m glad you got a couple of days off. I´m surprised you were able to fit all of that into one week! That sounds like a fun cabin trip too. And that´s great that you got to spend time with your parents and with Milan too.
Well fortunately my cold went away and I´m back to normal now. I can feel all of your prayers here and this week was a very great one. Yesterday was one of the most memorable days I've had on my mission so far. We had lots of blessings happen this week and I feel very grateful. I have been thinking about the chapters in the book of mormon that talk about the great joy felt by Alma and the sons of Mosiah as they preached to the Lamanites. Although I haven´t been feeling quite as much joy as Ammon did in chapter 27- so much that it overcame his forces- I had a great feeling of joy yesterday and today. Chapter 29 says that this kind of joy comes from bringing people to repentance and also seeing the success of others. Alma says that he finds joy in striving to be an instrument in the hands of the Lord. I have been just as happy for the success of the other set of missionaries in the ward as for Elder Bento and I. But I was really happy yesterday for being able to help out 3 families.
First, Cleide´s family. We had been working with Cleide for a while, doing all that we could. Her baptism had already been marked a couple of times but something had always come up at the last minute. She lost a little bit of her excitement about baptism too. But the Lord sent a miracle this week that helped her to get baptized. She has a ten-year-old daughter that had been living in another city, but she moved in with Cleide last week. We took them to a ward activity on Wednesday and Elder Bento also showed them the baptismal font. As we were walking home, Keila, her daughter asked if she could be baptized on sunday with her mom. So she was really the key to getting her mom motivated again. So we finished teaching her during the week and they were both baptized on Sunday!
Second, we had gotten to know a young woman named Geovana that we started to bring to church. We found out last sunday that she has a sister who lives in a different neighborhood who has been a member for a few years in a different ward in Mossoró. So we taught Geovana and got her excited about baptism. And we arranged for her sister to come on sunday to watch her be baptized! Later, her sister told us that in her Patriarchal blessing it said that she would help bring the rest of her family to the gospel.
Third, in these couple of weeks we have become friends with a really good, receptive family. We started teaching them and they accepted baptism pretty quickly. The only problem is that the parents were never legally married, so we still have to do that part. But we baptized their two oldest kids, Karol (16) and Maurício (12) on Sunday. This was a miracle too because the kids had originally been a little reluctant to mark a date. But Karol is friends with Geovana and decided that she wanted to be baptized with her. And Maurício decided to go with them! Their dad works on sunday morning, but he arrived at the end of sacrament meeting with their mom and aunt to see the baptism.
So it was a great week with a lot of blessings. We were also able to have lots of investigators at church. We have been working hard here and I hope to be able to stay in this area a while with Elder Bento.
I love you all! Have a great week. The church is true.