It's been a while! What happened is today we had the privilege to go to a session at the Newport Beach Temple! It was awesome! Every time we go to the temple they've asked that we change our p-day. So today is our p-day! It's been so great. I love going to the temple! I believe I've said this before, but I love the temple so much because it's the one place on earth where one can go and feel such peace. All distractions are left at the door when you enter, and you enter into the peace and rest of the Lord. I love it so much. I know that the temple is the house of God! I'll send some pictures to show ya'll the fun we had!
Wow, so where do I start? We had mission council a week ago Tuesday. It was so great to be able to hear from President and Sister Bowen. The assistants gave a great training, which we in turn gave to our zone on the fundamentals of missionary work. When you new missionaries get to the mission field your trainer will go over the basics of missionary work. Just like sports, missionary work has fundamentals. Without these fundamentals we cannot do this work the way the Lord wants us to. We wont have success either. We are seeing a lot of success in our zone. Normally we have an average of 13 baptismal dates between the 7 companionships in our zone. We set a goal at the beginning of the transfer to have up to 31 dates. More than double. We really have the vision and faith that we can accomplish this goal. With more baptismal dates, the more we will baptize. Right now we have 29 baptismal dates in the zone. 22 of them are from the 4 companionships in our ward. We are seeing miracles! It’s been so awesome!
On Saturday we went over to teach some of Gilberto's co-workers that live in his same apartment complex. One is named Maricruz and her husband's name is Jesus. We got talking about the restoration. Turns out they are pretty prepared. I asked them "Have you noticed that there are a lot of churches around here? Have you ever asked yourself "Which one is the right one?" They said they've had that thought all the time and that's why they never go to church. We committed them to be baptized on the 8th of December. It was pretty awesome! So we have some new people that we are working with. It's really exciting because we are finding a lot of new people to teach that are really receptive. We are loving it!
Jorge seems to be doing well. We still can’t get his family to church! It's because the hardest thing for them to do is get up early in the morning for church. We start at 10 am, which seems like a great time for church but I guess they are used to sleeping in on Sundays. We have some big plans for them. We need to get them to church. We are going to have to invite them to be married so that Jorge can be baptized. We are working on inviting their nine-year-old daughter to be baptized as well. I remember going over to their house this week to eat with them (it was a family member's birthday) and seeing Jorge and thinking. He would make such a great member of the church. I really could envision him three years down the road as an elder’s quorum president. It was pretty wild. I hope we can make that vision come to pass. I believe we will. We are going to visit them tonight. Really excited!
Sister Ramoz...We are so close with her. She is still suffering from problems in her marriage. She has been married for about 33 years with this man who has been really rude to her. He literally works, comes home, showers, eats, and leaves to go and drink with his buddies and doesn't come home until late. She told us as we came to set an appointment that she is going to move back to Mexico with her son. Her husband doesn't want her to. She also doesn't want to be baptized without her husband’s permission. He won’t even respond to her at all about anything. That would be so frustrating. We had a great lesson where a couple and another member who lives just down the street came with us to teach her about faith. We started by reading my favorite verse of all scripture Proverbs 3:5-6. We talked about how she needed to put trust in the Lord and make the decision to be baptized. We testified of the blessings that would come from doing so. Really we have to walk by faith. It's almost walking blind but we have to trust Him. The members did a great job at being persistent and bold with her about being baptized. They all shared very personal stories about how they took a step of faith and were blessed. She said that she hasn't told her husband she wants to be baptized. We invited her to pray for the courage to talk to her husband and that if she would we promised her, as representatives of the Lord, that he would approve of her being baptized. It was a powerful lesson. One of the most powerful I've had. I know she will be baptized. I know we are going to witness a miracle. The husband has been changing his ways a little. What a miracle that is. So I know he will approve.
What a week huh? I know that we will continue to see success as long as we put our trust in the Lord rather than our own understanding. For His ways are higher than our ways and His thought are higher than our thoughts. I know that this is the work of the Lord. I know that this is His true church and that in it we find life eternal.
Have a great week.
Elder Dallin M. Ollerton