Letter #76

Dear Family and Friends,

On Wednesday we had our long anticipated worldwide training. It was fantastic. We received great training, and also the exciting news that the missionary schedule can be changed. To  better adapt to the different cultures around the world, mission presidents have the ability to change the schedule. During the broadcast, they showed an example of a schedule, titled `´Mission in Latin America´´ and had the wake up time at 7:30 and going to sleep time at 11:30.

The next day the zone leaders´s met in Vitoria to talk about what we´d do, and for about 30 seconds silence reigned, waiting to see who would promote sleeping in longer. I ended up talking first and said that we should stick with the current 6;30 wake up and 10;30 time to sleep, to which President concurred and that was that. Yet, we now have greater flexibility during the day, and it will help us to be more productive and effective.

Saturday was awful. We had a baptism scheduled and we were happy and excited for her. We stopped by her house in the afternoon and said we´d be waiting for her at the church later. At 7, she showed up, chose her baptismal clothing, and then asked to talk with the bishop. So, together with a room full of members, we waited anxiously for one hour wondering what had happened and what was happening. Finally they came out, the bishop explained a couple things, said we had the keys to decide, but we decided to wait. I won´t say anything else, other than neither my companion or I have ever seen anything like this. It was sad to have everything ready and apparently right, only to not happen.

And then the miracle on Sunday. Jose, who I wrote about last week, came to church hoping to be baptized and after a tense couple of hours, was! He had to be interviewed by a counselor to Pres. Young, which happened during church, but then we had to wait to hear if Pres. Young approved or not. The font leaks, so was almost empty from the day before. And, the water tank for the font was empty for some reason so didn´t fill up, so we decided to act on faith and fill up the font laboriously with buckets. Our church ends at 11;30, but Pres. Young never calls until the meetings end, which for him is at 12. So, with the members, we again waited. But everything went right. And at the end, Jose bore a powerful testimony about how he prayed to be led to the truth. How the next day we showed up, going where missionaries have never gone before, and then, in response to our invitation to pray, had a dream where he saw lots of people in white shirts and suits hugging him and welcoming him into a large church with benches. When he came to the church for the first time, he said, This is what I dreamed.” It was an awesome end to the week.


Elder Schenewark

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