Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Rachel and The Priesthood

Hey everyone!
I'm glad to hear that grandpa is doing better. Thank you for your prayers :)
Today makes 11 months now that I have been on my mission. The last 2 or 3 months have gone by super fast, and i feel like time is only speeding up haha. We had a very good week this week, lots of stuff happened.
Monday - We had a family home evening with a family in the ward that is really awesome. Actually that same day there son found out he is able to go on a mission, which was way cool because we thought he wasn't going to be able to because of some problems that he had before. But he can now and hes getting started on his papers this week:)
Tuesday - We had a surprise zone meeting in the morning, and then afterwards we went on exchanges with the other elders from the district. Those went well, I got work in their area for a day.
Wednesday - Not a lot of stuff happened on Wednesday, but we did get to visit with some families that really needed some help.
Thursday - We met with a woman in our ward who actually is from new jersey! So she speaks English, and so does her father. She asked me a favor though. Her younger sister who is 18 just moved to phoenix! And well she doesn't know anyone, and wants to make friends. She is living with her uncle right now, but wants to get her own place. If anyone knows of anyone who needs a roommate let me know, so that i can get the information and everything to them. She speaks English and everything, she was born in the US.
Afterwards we met some new investigators who are super great. They are a reference from St. George Utah. They visited the visitors center of the temple there, and said they would like to talk to us. Super cool couple, like 30ish years old.
Friday - Friday actually started out pretty rough. It was raining and all of our appointments were falling through, but it got a lot better. We met with our investigator named Rachel. Shes is just super awesome and super prepared. She already told us she wants to get baptized, but she has a little problem. Maybe it would help if i explained our beliefs a bit first.
You see in our church, we believe in something called the priesthood. The priesthood is the authority, or the permission to act in God's name. All of the ancient prophets like Moses, Abraham, Noah and all the rest had this power. Jesus Christ also gave this power to his 12 apostles when he was here on the earth. This power is how they performed the miracles you see in the scriptures, but it is also how they performed sacred ordinances such as baptism, or giving people the holy ghost. It was all done with this Priesthood authority. later on, Jesus Christ was killed, but his apostles were still there to lead and direct the church. With that same priesthood authority.
But with time the apostles were all either killed or exiled, leaving the earth without the Priesthood. We believe that for a time the earth was in a state of apostasy, void of the true church or God's priesthood. Many churches tried their best, and had good intentions, but without the priesthood no church could perform these sacred saving ordinances. In the early 19th century God restored his true church to the earth through a young boy/man named Joseph Smith. Who was called as a prophet once again in the earth, and with that he received the priesthood, restoring it again to the Earth.
What does this have to do with Rachel? Well Rachel used to be Catholic. About 9 months  ago her husband passed away, and at the year anniversary of the death of someone in the catholic church, they put together a mass for this, where they take part in the sacraments and stuff like that. And Rachel wants to do that.
The Problem with that, is if Rachel is baptized in the church, knowing and believing that the authority of god can only be found in the church, and then goes and partakes of the sacraments in another which doesn't have the authority, well.. Its not really the best thing for someone to do. And she knows that, so she said she wants to wait til December to get baptized so she can do the mass. Which is fine if she wants to wait, but we know she is ready now.
Well we met with Rachel on Friday. And we talked about baptism, but she was till say saying she wants to wait. We had talked about this many times before, and we always tried to be very sensitive about it. But to be honest we had just been beating around the bush, and not really doing our duty as missionaries.
My companion explained the priesthood to her again. Then i don't know what came over me, but i asked her if she believed if the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints is the only church with gods authority on the earth. She said yes. And i said " We love you and we would never want to hurt you. But that performing that mass will not help your husband. And postponing your baptism to do that is not something that's okay in gods eyes. The ordinances we can perform for the dead in temples is what will really help him." I swear we sat in silence for like 3 hours haha. I thought she was going to kick us out and tell us never to come back. A 16 year old from the ward was accompanying us for the day, and i thought he was going to cry. BUT, after a time, Rachel said okay, i will get baptized. And she now has a baptism date for September 22nd:)
It really strengthened my testimony that if the spirit is present, and we do it with love, no one is ever going to be offended from us telling them the truth and what we really think. We don't need to beat around the bush with people.
Saturday and Sunday - Were great days also, and we were able to have some really fun edifying lessons with members, and we helped some other elders find a new investigator:)
Its been a great week. The Lord has been blessing us and helping us so much. He does the same for you everyday, even if some days it doesn't seem like it. He loves you.
I love you guys too:)
 Have a great week!
Elder Wilson

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