My favorite experience of the week was a sweet blessing attending a baptism for a new sister in the Cumorah branch (Spanish speaking). The sister missionaries wanted her to have something prettier to wear than the jumpsuits that are used. We happened to be replacing my scripture case with a purse and found just what was needed. We then received the assignment to attend the baptism. It was one of the sweetest spirits I have felt. I couldn't understand it, but I felt the power of the Holy Ghost. She is a sweet woman who has found the answers in her life.
I wish I could say that my use of the language is coming more easily. It is not. I really want to learn, but find myself caught up in the assignments and not getting to study as I need to. I need to use the language, but every time I start to try, I find that I can't remember anything I learned. I suppose that it is so that if I ever learn, I will know that it was not because of anything I was able to do myself.
This week the lesson in Sunday School was on Josiah. I was profoundly moved by the testimony given of him in the scriptures. He was a mighty king, more importantly, he was a powerful force for good in his kingdom. I puzzled about the Lord allowing him to be killed in a battle. As I studied, I found that he had been promised that he would not live to see the destruction of his people. Other scriptures make it clear that the Kingdom of Judah had complied with his orders, but had never let go of their false gods. I suppose it was a tender mercy from God to allow him to not have to watch them return, or worse yet, to turn against him.
One of our sweet friends who has been investigating the church, comes regularly to Sunday School. She came today as we discussed Hezekiah and Josiah. She added one of the stories about Hezekiah that the teacher had not mentioned. She has a great knowledge of the Old Testament. Love her!
We were able to attend the temple with a number of the missionaries in the mission. This time I was able to hear the session in English. Those who were there were all missionaries who had been able to have the blessing of someone being baptized in August. They were all happy to be there. The reason that Elder Dixon and I are not standing together is that I was helping a missionary get a picture of the group. Elder Dixon is in the back, almost hidden.
We had a celebration of the marriage of Elza and Josh. It is so fun to see a born-in-Georgia man with a born-in-Brazil woman. The two families blended beautifully. We are considering an international fair where our Georgian friends can bring some of their southern fair. It was great to see them doing the Macarena together!
Bala's family finally arrived safely. We had the privilege of meeting his wife and little daughter tonight. They are still struggling with jet-lag. His wife gave us some Indian "snacks" as they called them. They were very good. We had taken some fresh chocolate-chip cookies. His wife indicated she would like to learn to make them. I look forward to learning with her, and helping her learn. We probably will need to start with getting measuring cups since I doubt she has ever used them!