Monday, September 26, 2016

Week 34 - Calgary

Hola!!! Mi familia!! Les quiero! 

Esta semana realmente fue la mejor de todos. Tengo dos historias/milagros para contar y también algunas historias chistosas. Entonces Rene was baptized and has received the gift of the Holy Ghost and also has received the Aaronic priesthood and is a priest!!!! Que increíble. Also we found such a sweet women from Ecuador at our ESL class and she is called Geomiara and is soooooo interested in the church and she's incredible. So first I'll start off with Rene's baptism. (Can't wait to send y'all the photos) First I just got to say that it was one of the most incredible, memorable, happiest, and best moments/experience of my life and I will always remember it. The amount of cool miracles and details throughout the entire day and especially the baptism is just too much to write, let alone the whole week! but I will try to tell y'all some! So last Friday at 11:00am we got to go to "Retrainers" meeting with President and Sister Miles and it's just a meeting of all of the trainers and new missionaries tell what they have learned and cool experienced that have happened since we started and how we can improve. The meeting was so spiritual and I was reminded of a lot of things that I should do to magnify and fulfill my crazy awesome calling as a missionary. Things like charity and really having charity and love for others and showing it, forgiveness, virtue, obedience, setting and achieving goals, and also having fun and enjoying my mission and being myself. I love all the meetings we have because they always drive me to be better and improve and also sometimes they make me realize just how imperfect I am and all the things I have to improve. But it's all good if I am really trying my best because that is what God asks of us. So after the meeting we went to go prepare for the baptism like 5 hours earlier to fill up the baptismal font because it takes forever to fill up and also to get everything ready and we also used that time to do weekly planning. So you know that feeling of waiting in line about to ride a roller coaster, that's the feeling I had as the time kept coming towards Rene's baptism. It was so crazy and it wasn't a nervousness of being scared but just being excited. I loved it. Then finally Rene arrived at 7:00 with his white shirt and we showed him how everything would go and how I would baptize him and everything. Sooooo cool. He said he was nervous and then I said trust me I am nervous too haha. Then at 7:30 we started to greet the members and then we went to go get dressed in our white clothes. In was so special to have that time with Rene and changing into white. Loved it so much. Then we went to greet the rest of the members and also President and Sister Miles! Yeah they came and that was super special. President and Sister Miles really are the best "mission parents" every. I love them so much. So then the program started and Hermano Ruiz and Hermano Miguel Pompa who is going on his mission to Argentina next month gave amazing talks on baptism and confirmation. Then it was time for the ordinance, Rene and I walk over to the font and step down the steps into the water and then I just had such an amazing amount of peace and joy that filled me and then I do the prayer "René Alonso Canales Valle, habiendo sido comisionado por Jesucristo, yo te bautizo en el nombre del Padre, y del Hijo, y del Espíritu Santo. Amen." Then Rene submerges completely under the water leaving all of the sins and mistakes and wrong things in his life and bad and sad feelings and I brought him back up.. Then we walked back dripping wet to get dressed. I loved it so much. Really one of the sweetest moments of my life. Talking with Rene and saying we did it and we aren't nervous anymore and we just feel peace and joy was so special.

This whole experience has really strengthened my testimony a lot. The amount of symbolism in the church and especially in baptism is so cool. Because of Jesus Christ and His perfect love for us we can choose to follow His example and be born again. We can repent, we can change, we can leave behind all of the the sins and the sad and bad feelings that come from them behind and Christ will lift us up from the drowning feeling that life brings sometimes and he will give us happiness and peace and joy for the choice we made to follow Him. He will bless us and those around us if we do what He asks us to do. All He asks of us is to come unto Him and He will do the rest. He has suffered the penalties of our sins so that we may repent and has died for us and then was resurrected for us so we can be resurrected too and return to the presence of our Father in heaven and be with our families forever.

Like always I don't have a ton of time so now I will tell y'all just a couple of funny stories. So Rene is a super funny guy and likes to joke and he's  just awesome. He asked if we could just climb onto the roof part of the baptismal font and just dive in because it would be more entertaining. Then after the baptism he showed us all a photo of him on his phone when he was like 18 years old and he had a 8 pack of abs!! We were all freaking out and then he starts to count in English "yeah! 1,2,3,..5,8!!!" And we were like what!!? Haha Rene! And then he says but now I just have one and points to his belly haha we were dying laughing. He is so awesome. Then also I forgot to tell y'all about Elder McLaren, my last companion, he sleep walks and sleep talks a lot!! It's super crazy and one night I was sleeping and our beds are right next to each other and all of a sudden he grabs all of my toes super tightly and holds them for like 10 seconds and then lets go real fast and flips around the other way like nothing happened haha. Tons more but gotta get going.

I truly love my mission. I really have developed a great an huge amount of love for the Spanish people here and also the members. I wish y'all could have been at church with me yesterday because it was alllll about missionary work, at the end of sacrament meeting all 8 of us missionaries in the branch sang "Llamados a servir" and some of the members started to cry and even Presidente Jaco our branch president was crying and then he gave his testimony on missionary work. Soooo amazing. I felt the Spirit so much. I truly believe that the greatest thing in the gospel and in the church for me is love. If we focus on and understand the love Jesus Christ has for us and what He did for us, life will be awesome and incredible all the time. Even through the hard times. Jesus Christ makes it all better. 

I love y'all and hope y'all are enjoying school and having fun and living the gospel. Share the gospel by being an example. It really works. Also I can't believe it's already general conference again!! So crazy. Well till next week! Oh!! Forgot to tell y'all about Geomaira and her kids and How awesome they are. I will next week!! Time for a ton of pics! 

Wonderful Experience!

Missionaries of the area with Rene.


He is Awesome!