Alright before I get to my week, congratulations Ka'ai!! I had no idea he wasn't baptized yet either haha. But I am so ridiculously happy for him, especially since it was all his decision. All that's left is enduring to the end, which is the hardest, but most rewarding step of the gospel of Jesus Christ. I'm so grateful that there are hard-working & worthy elders assigned in Kea'au Ward who were able to help Ka'ai on the path to entering the waters of baptism. And then for Chase and Isaiah them for being great examples and fellowshippers for Ka'ai. Keep me updated on that please! I'm excited to hear about how this will help the family.
We had a great week! More splits, a few CSPs, and more great things happening in the work. Have I told you guys about Vinalyn yet? She's the younger sister of April Dangilan, our recent convert. About a month ago April invited her to church and she decided to go. We were happy to see a new face in church, but we had no idea she'd receive the gospel as well as she has been! At first we thought her house was in the sisters' area so they started teaching her the lessons, but eventually we found out by the members that her area is actually in our boundaries. Vinalyn was a little sad at first since she got close with the sisters really quickly, but she continues to be taught and fully takes it all in! She was just given a Book of Mormon 2 weeks ago and yesterday was already asking questions about Lehi's Dream in 1 Nephi 8! We are so excited to see that she's progressing. Our goal for her baptism is August 27. She also brought a friend to church yesterday, so we're excited to teach her some time this week as well. Vinalyn's uncle also sat in on our last lesson and says he has a strong desire to quit drinking and smoking. He wanted to go to church yesterday but had to work at the last minute. Hopefully this week!
Something I learned to really appreciate about Elder Labrador this week is his skill in building relationships with people. It's because of him that Vinalyn is getting more comfortable with us. After our last lesson with her we visited a less-active member nearby who had a friend over. This member is usually really shy and her friend kind of scared me at first haha, but they opened up so quickly thanks to Elder! I realized that there's a way higher chance of getting someone to return to church if you become their friend first, rather than a missionary who's obviously just trying to get them back to church. I'm also happy to report that we got the transfer list this morning, and Elder Labrador is not transferring! But I heard that Elder Umpat them in my last area are getting pulled out because of our shortening supply of missionaries :/ Sayang.
On Friday I was able to work with Elder Golde in Aritao. I'm glad I got to work with him this once, since his name is on the transfer list. We were pretty surprised since he's only been here for one cycle, but it's not President Hiatt who chooses. I had a great time working with him! He's only about 8 months in the mission so far, but such a great missionary. Something I noticed he does that most missionaries don't, is that with everyone he speaks to, even if it's only 20 seconds, he ends it off by inviting them to church. That's an essential part in knowing if the gospel is true. I also know he and Elder Oredson are hard workers in Aritao because they have some great investigators! We only visited 3 of them on Friday, but in my opinion those 3 will most-likely be baptized, and soon.
A few weeks ago I started re-reading the Book of Mormon and realized that the story of Moses is referred to pretty frequently. I told myself that if I want to develop a deeper testimony of the Book of Mormon, I should probably know the full story of Moses too. So I'm now reading his story in Exodus, and it's crazy interesting! So different from the "Prince of Egypt" cartoon we used to watch as kids haha. It's amazing how much God did for the children of Israel. It's crazy how hard-headed the Pharaoh was even after so many signs that there is a God. How many times are we like him? Especially as members, we know that there is a God. With that knowledge, let's not murmur or forget Him so quickly, but submit to His will by trying our absolute best in keeping His commandments. If we do that He will, like with the children of Israel, guide us day and night.
Mahal ko po kayo!
Dutuerte kids' Baptism by the Dupax Del Norte elders. The water pump at their chapel broke, so we went to a resort kind of nearby and they were baptized in a pool!