Saturday, July 25, 2009

Vizag, July 15

This week was hectic and crazy but absolutely awesome. Mostly because it was so busy – we had two baptisms on Sunday, which means tons and tons of logistics and last-minute preparation. It was totally worth it though, we were so happy to watch it. I didn’t baptize anyone, which is actually better because you have a kind of bond with people you baptize. And I won’t be here forever so I prefer that someone else have that bond.
I did receive your package of shirts. Thanks! It was actually just in time! They did construction on the road last week and broke our pipe, so we’ve been dealing with some hassles and haven’t had any clean municipal water for a week and a half. Luckily that was all resolved yesterday, but in the meantime we only have well water which makes our white shirts dirtier than they started. So I haven’t had to wash any shirts because I’ve just been wearing the ones you sent. Also I found this great whitener stuff called Vanish. So I should be fine on shirts for the rest of the two years.
I was looking at the calendar, and realized I’ve been out for six months! Kind of crazy. But really, I feel comfortable out here. Whatever I want to accomplish, I only have three-quarters of the time I started with. That’s the moral of the story of life, I suppose.
Met this really interesting/weird guy named Mohammed. He’s been seven different religions in his life, starting with being a Hindu (Brahmnin caste), including a couple different kinds of Christian, and now obviously he’s Muslim. His 20 year old son was sitting in the room, making a Mickey Mouse wallpaper on the computer and ignoring us. I wondered what he thought about his father. Especially because he’s had to change his name a few times in the process.
On Monday we sat down and made detailed plans for everyone we’re teaching, who’s going to bring them to church, when we’re going to teach them, who we’re going to bring, and what baptismal dates we’ll invite them to be baptized on. So I have like six lists on that tiny piece of paper in my planner, and *gasp* I’m using it! It’s so helpful and the week is going so well. We’re busy all day every day.
A miracle happened a couple weeks ago, we met this awesome guy on the bus (perfect English, got a bachelor's in theology and went to do ministrry in Nepal), taught him from Jesus Christ's Earthly Ministry to Book of Mormon in 5 minutes on the bus, got off and I had written down his phone number wrong. I was devastated, my companion said all we can do is pray. I didn't even do that. **The next day**, we met him at his bus stop; we were traveling with an investigator to his in-laws' house, on the same bus, so we got to have another 30 minute conversation. We're teaching him and his wife and he's still awesome, he read the Introduction to the Book of Mormon after finishing 3 Nephi 11.

People are just opening their doors to us left and right it's ridiculous. We don't have any time to go finding after getting 7, 15, 16, 7 new investigators sequentially by week and still we're getting more. We're still trying to pick up old people the previous elders taught two or three months back, because of that we'll probably get 10 or 12 new investigators.

We've been here only a month, and we started with days that were almost all finding and now we're booked all day every day. We only have one person with a baptismal date right now but we have plans to invite about 10 or 15 people soon, so we should be picking up more. The branch president jokingly complained to us on Sunday, "What? Why aren't you having any baptisms next week?" to which my response was "Because we'll be having two the week after that!" (One from the other companionship)
Hope you're well; I certainly am.
Sam

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