It has been a long and stressful week this week. We had a lot going on trying to sus things out for the baptism. Its been a little bit cooler weather which I'm happy to welcome. I think I'm really going to miss the snow this year. Send me some pictures. this week was pretty full on with lessons some days, then others we pretty much had none. But over all we met pretty much all of our goals and it was a good week.
So the reason the baptism was so stressful was because we moved it forward a week from what we had planned. So we had to run all over talking to people to see if they'd be willing to give talks, prayers, baptize, etc. like every day. So on Friday, everything was all good to go and set up. Then Saturday morning came. We called about 9am (the baptism was at 10) to see if everything was alright. Kattie (17 yr old daughter) answered the phone and told us how Rosie didn't want to be baptized. So we ran over to her house and talked to her. She was saying that she was so excited for this day, and when she woke up nobody was up or getting ready. And Matekino just up and left for the church without her wearing an immodest skirt. She was super frustrated that her family wasn't supporting her. So we talked to her and tried to calm her down and convincing her to get baptized. Nothing seemed to work. She agreed to still let Whetu (12) get baptized and that she'd take him over and watch him. When she got to the church she still didn't want to get baptized. We saw brother Kaituu walking up in his white clothes and he said "It was hard to find, but I got some white pants! They're not ironed, but I got them." After seeing "his glow" Rosie decided to get baptized. We had 3 jump suits but none of them fit her. Luckily one of the members said that they had some white clothes that she could wear. They were the members that we had dinner with the night before, and who weren't planning on coming. Heavenly Father was truly working in the background all along. It was truly a miracle. After she was baptized, she gave a powerful testimony like I've never heard from any convert. She said that she had this burning feeling all through her, and that she's never been so happy in her life. She even called the ward her family. Before she was one of those people that utterly rejected the missionaries, but now she is happier that than she's ever been.
Kattie her daughter is set to be baptized this Friday! That family has really turned around. Rosie, Matekino, and Kattie have all quit smoking, and Rosie quit coffee. They've had trials from every way you can imagine. But because of accepting Christ in they're lives, they're happier than ever. This church is the true church of Jesus Christ. I know He restored it through Joseph Smith. I'm so glad to know that because of the restored priesthood, our family is sealed together forever.
I love you all, you're all in my prayers. Thank you so much for your prayers in my behalf and your support. I couldn't do this wor without it.
I'm pretty sure that I'll get a calling card from down here, and I'll use the phone from our flat to call.
I got your second package early this week. Thank you so much! I can't wait to open them! I already have the Christmas tree up on the desk, and the stocking hanging.
Some traditions in NZ...hmmm. There are a lot of different cultures here. So some people have a big bar-b-q beach party (which is the ward Christmas party this year), and some people do hangi's. which is the pig roast under ground. Those are the only two different traditions I've heard of so far. If I hear of more, I'll let you know.
Random cannon in Mangere Bridge...