Dear Family and Friends,
First of all I want to apologize for any confusion caused by this email for possible missing letters... the keyboard I am using doesn’t seem to pick up everything I type. Hope you are all enjoying your first week back at school, etc. I assume all is well but I guess I will just have to wait for that reaffirmation. Overall we have had a great week here in Wilde.
We have had a lot of success finding some new people to teach this week! Saturday we found a lady named Nora who Elder Alvarez first came in contact with one of his other companions knocking doors. In the last year she has lost her husband and a sister in law to cancer, and seems to be handling it all really well. Saturday apparently was a particularly hard day for her but she said for some reason she felt inspired to let us in to her house. She seemed very grateful for our visit, even just having someone to talk to, but also was very interested in what we told her about the Book of Mormon and the promise that she can find many answers to the questions she has. She was also very excited to learn how to pray and gave a very sincere prayer at the end of our visit expressing gratitude for our visit and promised to follow in this path that has been laid before her.
Yesterday we found the friend of a member, Hna Sanchez y her daughters, who has been going to church the last several weeks but we have never been able to find them at home. Her name is Melany and she is 12 years old. She already has desires to be baptized and Hna Sanchez has already talked to and gotten permission from her parents. She also has 8 brothers and sisters (5 girls 3 boys). Apparently her dad is really into drugs, etc. and hasnt been doing good lately. Very sad to see some of the family situations here, it has really been an eye opener and I now understand why missionaries are asked to prepare and be healthy EMOTIONALLY in addition to Physically and Spiritually. I am confident the Lord gives us the additional strength we need to continue day to day.
Church yesterday was fantastic as well. We had a great Ward Counsel Meeting in the morning and it was truly amazing to see the love and dedication that the leaders here, especially the bishop, have for the work. He committed to pass by every single one of the people we had mentioned on the record we filled out in the next 3 weeks. In the classes/sacrament meeting we had some great messages about the importance of sustaining our leaders (in preparation for Stake Conference next week.) The Bishop compared our leaders who are called to someone running a race. The Lord has called them to be in that race, and we can’t replace them to run for them. What we can do is be there to encourage/give water/etc. to them all along the way. He also shared the example of Moses leading the children of Israel having to raise his arms up and used me to illustrate the example having me stand in front of everybody and hold my arms up for what seemed like forever before having several Hermanos come and support my arms. Another Hno also made some great comments of the importance of conferences. He brought up the point that a lot of times we hear about the same old things that we are already doing... but that we can always improve and that we should use those moments to reflect on the blessings we have received through obedience to that principle which brings greater strength of testimony. Fantastic Ward!
Hope you all have a great week, that all is well and that you haven’t forgotten me already!
Elder Ian Wheelhouse