Tuesday, September 30, 2014

9/29/14 - Ricky's Baptism & Half Way Milestone

                                        Sis. McNeill, Sis. French, Ricky and Bro. Escamilla

   Wahoo!!! Happy 2 days before my half way mark - my official "Hump Day" will be October 1st! And with a baptism on Saturday, who could ask for more? 
    Ricky was baptized by Brother Ruben Escamilla, the YM President and yesterday was confirmed AND found worthy to become a priest!!!   Fun details:

-The member Luis (who we asked to speak on baptism) called us 2 hrs. before the baptism and asked if we could come over and help him write it.. Ahh! We had to leave before he got anything down, but we gave him some ideas and a type of outline, and let him use our gospel principles book for quotes and stuff..... We were so nervous about it that while Sis French drove, I wrote out a simple talk on a Referral's paper on the way down to the stake center.. just in case. Luckily, he had his own talk.... the first two pages from the Gospel's principles book, word for word! haha, so cute!
-Peter, our investigator, gave the opening prayer! It was so good, he was so nervous, and he did really good, just I think the pressure got to him.  So, he ended his prayer with "in the name of the church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, Amen.  He also asked physically how he could be baptized, since he's in a wheelchair. Ahhhh, he's sooo close!
-Ricky- Friday we had the most AWKWARD conversation talking about how he needs to wear white underwear, or boxer, or briefs.... or whatever men wear!.... still wasn't as bad as trying to sign that to Juan, our last “baptisee”, who was deaf.  But, his testimony Sunday was sooo good! He just talked about how it was seeing the church influence and change the members lives that showed him this was the true church. He bore witness that this is Christ's church, and he's excited to be a part of it. Man, he is SUCH a toddler in the gospel- we members don't even comprehend how much there really is. But one day at a time. Ricky has the faith, and he will stick with it, so I am sooo thrilled for him. How cool. Sisters have been teaching him since February. He considered being baptized maybe early next year, after school, but me/sis French more or less squeezed a baptismal date outta him. Six weeks later, he's preparing to get the priesthood. Man, truly the Lord has given us this tender mercy of which I am truly grateful. Juan was awesome, and touched my heart. It is wonderful how you have a different relationship with each person you teach/baptize.

    Soooo, other fun stuff, we got to watch Meet the Mormons! The blonde who narrates is in Burbank 3 ward, and I saw her at the women's broadcast! We had the whole mission get together and watch it. It is not for us to use as proselyting. But, we are to encourage members to go watch it. It’s a sweet documentary. It really highlights how we as Mormons should be the most passionate and driven people on the face of the earth!
   Yesterday at church, we talked to our friend Crystal (the elders are teaching her - luckies!)  But she just got outta prison, her husband was a Mormon. Crystal has no job, and got kicked out of her friends apt. because she refused to tend her friend's kids while she konked out from alcohol. Crystal has been sober for a little bit and she's just trying to get a clean slate. It’s nice though, she never got into crack, so her head's screwed on straight, unlike a lot of people we run into. So she shows up at church, riding the bus all night. She has her purse, and a black backpack. That’s all she owned. Before prison she had a place bigger than ours. Man, I was dying to help her out! Our poor Bishop, he deals with this a lot. Really, if you learn nothing else on your mission, you learn gratitude.

   Love you all!  Thank you mom and dad for raising me with what you did. This gospel is one of safety from the cruelty and influence of the world. I'm so grateful to be serving here, so hopefully I can lighten a few lives while I'm out here, since mine has been so blessed.
Love ya tons!
-Sis McNeill

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