Tayla was baptized and it was certainly an awesome experience. Her Uncle performed the baptism and confirmation. Tayla was certainly nervous about it, but she was just fine as she went into the font to be baptized. It was a choice spirit that everyone felt as we all witnessed the baptism. What a privilege it was to teach her. Elder Adams, he was my District Leader but is now my Zone Leader, he was able to come and he is in the picture as well. He taught her previously. Tayla's Mother is back and she is strong in the gospel. The family has had a strong history in the church and it is a big step for the family, as many of children in the family are Less-Active. I had a chance to ask Sister CArpenter (Tayla's Mother) what sparked her interest and desire to come back and get involved again. It wasn't a big light that she saw or a big spiritual experience, nor a big wake up call, it was simply her recognizing the blessings of the church, and desiring them for her children as well. She has always had a testimony of the gospel and her Father in Heavens love. It was when she looked at the bigger picture of becoming an eternal family that she then made a decision her self to make a come back and also have her daughter baptized. Truly a small, but major miracle.
I will tell of another awesome teaching appointment that we had just yesterday. It was the evening and our plans to visit a few people with a YSA young man didn't quite work out. We decided to call up a part member family and see if we could pop in to visit with them before the evening drew late. There name is the Martin Family, and the Children are all active in the church. The mother is LA, we don't know why, she is still very kind to us though, and the Father is not a member. Missionaries have all ready visited with him before a long with the family. While on the phone if at that time we could come for a quick visit. He sounded a bit reluctant but said yes. Maybe even a bit irritated. I wasn't to sure how it was going to go. Fast forward a little bit we got to their home and sat down. We played a game to break the ice, because everyone was a bit shy. Needless to say we had everyone laughing and enjoying themselves. At a certain point though, after the game was over, we then shared a spiritual thought about prayer. 3 Nephi 18:21, about praying in our families always. That was the catalyst, and Brother Martin then started talking about how he use to against the children going to church, and he would not take them. He spoke about the change he has seen in his children as they have gone to church. He spoke about a Sister who took the children to church every Sunday. One day she did not come because she had passed.... That was due to cancer and no one even knew. Her example inspired Brother Martin to take the children to church then on. Her sacrifice made powerful impact on him. Another experience he had was when his wife was sick when giving birth, she received a blessing and then soon after recovered surprisingly well. Brother Martin shared all these experiences with us. I'll I could think to myself was "he needs to be taught the missionary lessons." In fact it was a prompting to ask him and invite him. I spoke up and asked him. He said " No missionary has asked me to take the lessons before, yous have lessons?" We explained and talked about what they where. Brother Martin said in the end "I think about for sure". It was a pretty confident one. We will be following up with him. One reason he holds back is because he promised his father to honor the Maori culture and what traditions have been passed down in his family. Really a small concern, they don't really contradict each other. We may not be the missionaries that baptize him, however though it is amazing to hear all of his experiences, and to see how his heart has been softened over time.
It was a good week though overall. At times I do struggle a bit with my companion, because he can be a bit lazy, however though, I do have improvements to make as well. We work hard and we are doing our best!
Thanks for the e-mails, Love you all!
This Lady (LA) had this all written out... We thought it was pretty funny. We respected her wishes and did not knock in the end. Maybe we ask some of the members about her and see what we can gather.