Prayers have been answered...
Have some pretty good news this day for all of you tuned in. We found out about our transfers this morning. I have been praying and hoping to at least stay for another transfer. We have been having tons of success in the past couple weeks and have a few more baptisms set up for the next few weeks. I really did not want to miss out on the fruits of our labors here in this gold mine of San Ignacio. ¡Nos quedamos acá! I guess that God has prepared the both of us as the miners for this area if he wants us to be here 3 transfers together. It is pretty rare that comps stay together for more than two transfers. In this case with E´ Wixom, I am actually pretty stoked for another transfer working with these people because we both know them way good.
The other tender mercy of the Lord to us this past week was a surprise miracle baptism! Yeah, we found a person just waiting to get baptized that lived right next to one of our less-active families that we visit. Estefanía Sosa. 19 yrs old. 2 children. Lives in a shack. Her story is that she investigated the church about a year ago with the elders, but the only thing that was stopping her was getting married. The elders basically taught her everything and just left her as a present to future elders ready to go. Turns out that she got hitched a few months ago to her husband that is in jail...ha. They did the marriage ceremony in the jail and the first counselor in our bishopric even provided the food for it. Ha ha. I´m not quite sure what he is in jail for, but his wife even gave him a Book of Mormon to read a while ago and it sounds like he loves it. I am just curious now if they can do marrying over there, why wouldn´t they be able to do a baptismal service?... We had her baptismal service yesterday at 18:00 after church and it was one of the best baptismal services we have done or seen in the mission yet. Even though we have known her for less than a week, we wanted to go all out on the baptism. We organized a musical number, had way good talks by a few members, prepared banana bread and browies, and made sweet invitations. We couldn´t quite get her family to come to the service, even though they include a few recent converts, but it was still really good!
We are even preparing more baptismal services for the next few weeks. I really want to work my butt off to make them happen because I know that if I do my part and just tire myself out effectively working at the top of my potencial, the Lord is going to bless me with baptisms. Just have to lose myself in that! We have Teresa(mom) and Martín(19) as a reference from another ward. Martín basically lives the life of a mormon but just doesn´t quite belong to a church. He doesn´t smoke, drink, go out a party in the boliches(popular argentine dance clubs...usually not the best place to feel the spirit), or go out and just cause havoc with all of his drug-addict friends and rob every house they walk by at night. His mom told the misioneras in the other ward that she is worried for him and she doesn´t think it is normal. We passed by their house and explained to him that we have what he is already living. They will get baptized one of the first weeks in May. Irma Fiorentino, our English-speaking, Canadian friend and her husband will be moving back to Toronto this Thursday. She surprised us and came to sacrament meeting yesterday. After the meeting she told me that she is super happy because she had gone to some bible study class of some other church and they convinced her that all churches are going to lead us in the same exact direction because we all worship the same god. Basically the belief of all catholics, but now she thinks she has a stronger testimony that it is true. She is really good so we are going to communicate with missionaries in Toronto to keep workin with her. Another new investigator came to church yesterday named Lucas that comes from the same family that gave us Estefanía. Lucas just needs to get married and he can get baptized. Haroldo is also another old guy that we found in the street that is super interested in the Book of Mormon and what it has to offer. He read half the Book of Mormon in one week. He commited to go to church but he unfortunately didn´t keep his commitment.
Since we are working a lot more with less active families to obtain good references, we are doing a lot of Noche de Hogars(FHEs) to gain the trust of the members. We had one with a stake presidency member the other night and a less active family. He got permission from President Ávila for us to be out late because they could only start it at like 21:00. We ended up staying till like midnight. Good times.
I donated blood for the first time on Saturday. It was some emergency blood drive that they had in the Mendoza Zone Stake :Center for all of the missionaries. It was for some test or something. It was a pretty fun morning. My blood type is AB+ just in case anyone wants to know. Good times.
I think that I have been having some minor/major digestive problems again in the past few days. I made some onion rings the other day. They were really good, but I think they gave me some sort of curse.
I would like to take up this precious part part of my weekly letter to tell the mother how awesome she is. I was uncontrollably happy when I saw the package waiting for me in the offices on Wednesday. The ties, candy, broken head-scratcher that I found out is on like every street corner here so I hope you didn´t spend too much time looking for it(Love ya ma). I am starting to get more into tie trading lately. Earlier in the mission I wasn´t too much for it, but now that I have a bigger quantity, I am willing to see what more is out there.
Pensamiento Espiritual: Since my mind has been focused on baptism a lot lately, that is what the thought will be about.
Why do we get baptized?
To receive a remission of sins
To become members of the Church of Jesus Christ
To be able to receive the Holy Ghost
To show our obedience
To enter into the kingdom of God
If we look at this list and see how important baptism is. Here are only 5 important points of baptism. If the bible says that there is only one Lord, one faith, and one baptism, how then shall we know the correct manner of baptism to fulfill each of these points? It is very important to have the one correct baptism. I testify that the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints is that only church on earth today that can fill us and give us all of our needs.
Much love from Mendoza, Argentina. Signing out is...
Elder Deven Larisch
¡La Iglesia es Verdadera!