Monday, April 12, 2010

Letter #29 - April 12, 2010

Hey travellers, glad you're all home and that you had a fantastic time in China.

This week was a little bit crazy, a little bit cool. We had four baptisms, two in the cascades of San Ramon and two in the font at the church Sunday morning. It's weird because I wasńt involved in the teaching of these four very much. One of them, Elizabeth, I worked with and taught when I was with Hna. Aguilar but the others not really. So now when Hna. Aguilar and Juarez are both gone in three weeks, I'll have a bunch of recent converts to work with that I don't know very well. Weird. But oh well. Working with two sets of missionaries in one area is hard, but it's only for one more week.

I'll be sad when Hna. Aguilar leaves this Sunday, but being back to two will be nice. So this Saturday, the whole Zone travelled to San Ramon, an area in our zone with some cool cascades to do the baptisms of all the people in all the areas. We had about 30 baptisms in all. It was a short hike to get in to the cascades but everyone made it and it was really cool. About 15 minutes after we got there it started to pour, so everyone ended up getting drenched, not just the baptizers and baptizees. And the hike back was pretty slippery but everyone made it just fine. It was funny because for the first few baptisms, everyone clapped and cheered. A little bit of apostasy for you but what can you do?

The weirdest thing this week though, was teaching a lesson in English. A lady in our branch has a son in law from the United States and this son in law has a guy from England, Machay is his name I think and another girl from Indiana living with them. They all speak a little bit of Spanish and the lady in our branch was talking to them last week and Machay expressed interest in reading the book of mormon, but in English. Well I just happened to have a copy in English that I never gave away in the airport 5 months ago, so I brough it and taught them both yesterday. It was so weird and words kept coming out in Spanish. It was also weird because these people were so different from anyone I've taught here in Nicaragua. The majority of the people in Nicaragua that we teach just smile and nod and you really have to wonder if anything you are saying is sinking in or if they understand.

These people asked a ton of questions and challenged me on everything. On top of that, I was teaching without a companion to support me so it was super hard. But when we left they had committed to read and pray about the Book of Mormon and I'm going back to teach them next Sunday. Such a different experience. It made me realize how different everyone's missions are. I feel like the challenges here are very unique, but every mission has it's unique challenges. It was refreshing to have my views challenged, to think and question a little deeper and to feel the deeply rooted conviction I have that what I am teaching is good and true and right even when the world has such different views. Here in Christian land, it's easy to forget that not everyone believes in God and Jesus Christ the same way that we do and to remember again, how lost we are without the Savior.

I know this church is true. My confidence in God's plan for His children on the earth is sure. Some may say that our vision is narrow and that our beliefs are binding, but I feel more liberated and open-minded the more I study the gospel and learn about the true nature of human kind and our journey here on the earth. The plan is perfect. God knows each of us and loves us. Jesus Christ is the Savior of us all and we need Him so desperately. We can find the kind of deep, abiding happiness that lasts forever as we strive to live in accordance with God's eternal and unalterable laws.

Being a missionary is the best thing in the world--we have the truth, and the truth sets us free.


Hna Crosland

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