Thursday, May 20, 2010

Another week in Zipa (a day late) and my first baptism

Hola todos!!!

So this week has been totally ups and downs. Up, we had our first baptism this past Saturday. It was sweet, her name is Fernanda. She was baptized by one of the members of the ward here. It was really sweet, she was so ready. Problem was, we weren´t. We hurried and got our district leader down here on Thursday night to interview her and she passed with flying colors. Problem was, she wanted to be baptized the same weekend. Well, she only could be baptized then, either that or wait for like three weeks due to work. So we went ahead with it. The day came and we arrived at the chapel an an hour before to start filling the font, problem was, there wasn´t much water pressure.

We left that running and went to pick up Fernanda and the baptismal clothing which for whatever reason was at our house and we had forgotten to grab on our way out. On the way, my comp was calling up every member of the branch we had in our phone to attend (something we had forgotten to do earlier). Fernanda arrived a little late to the meeting spot and was, as luck would have it, sick as a dog. But she still wanted to go forward with it. So we did. We arrived at the chapel a little late (15 min after the proposed starting time) but got it going with the few members (about 8) who were there. Time for the actual baptism came and lo and behold, there was probably only a foot and a half of water in the font. Like seriously, the water didn´t even come up to the brother´s knees. But somehow, after some finagling, he was able to get her completely submerged. After, the RS pres was supposed to give the welcome, but couldn´t make it, so one of the other sisters did. Bore a couple of testimonies. Gave her a priesthood blessing for her ailment. And that was it. My first baptism. It was a hectic mess, but the Spirit was there.

As a postscriptum to the above, Fernanda didn´t make it to sacrament meeting the next day because she was in the emergency room. She got some medicine though, and was able to make it to Sunday school. Downside, she didn´t yet get confirmed and we will now have to wait until next week to do it. =(

Aside from that awesome, yet hectic mess, life has been good. We have been doing a ton of contacting (over a hundred last week) and now have a couple of progressing investigators. One is Paula, she is a friend of Fernanda and actually came to church this past Sunday and ended up staying for all three hours. She has had the first lesson and is reading the Book of Mormon. We have an appointment with her tonight to follow up. She seems pretty golden right now. The other is familia Rodriguez. They are awesome. The husband, Cesar, always has a ton of questions, but understands everything really quickly. The wife, Gloria, on the first visit told us the she was Catholic and intended to stay that way. But she has softened towards us a lot lately. Both are reading the Book of Mormon and she already knows it is true. So we´ll see. They have two daughters who are in their older teens, both of which are somewhat interested in a teenage sort of way. You know, that sort of feigned indifference.

The sentiment of Gloria is a common one here. Almost everyone here is Catholic. You can see it everywhere. You´ll get on a bus (as we did this morning for district meeting) and there will be a rosary hanging from the rear view mirror. Walk down the street and there will be a Virgin Mary shrine on a street corner. You can see the cathedral in the town square from five cuadras away. Just a little different. Though mostly, the Catholic thing is more culturally based than an actually belief. Many of them will outright say that they are "following in the beliefs of their fathers". Ah well. Such is life

No more time to talk, must be going. After all, there's a message that needs sharing.

Les quiero,
-Elder Rallison

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