Wednesday, February 19, 2014
Juan y Teresa!
Sent: Monday, February 17, 2014 10:39:19 AM
Subject: Juan y Teresa!
Hola Familia y Amigos!
This week was so great. It started out kind of rough because for 3
days all of our appointments were falling through as well as members
to come with us, but we were so blessed in the end of the week.
The greatest miracle was the Baptism of Teresa and Juan. I don't think
I have said much in my letters about them, but they are incredible.
The baptism was so beautiful.
4 weeks ago, it was Sunday and we were waiting at the bus stop to go
to church. Usually they come really frequently, but there werent any
coming this Sunday for some reason. I noticed a woman who was also
waiting, who looked kind of stressed, and was smoking a cigarette. I
started to talk to her, that was the 1st time we met Teresa. We taught
her about the Gospel of Jesus Christ and how Christ can give us
strength to overcome our trials and make us clean. She said she would
read the pamphlet we left with her and we set up an appointment to
talk with her.
Ah, it seems like that was just yesterday, and it wasn't long ago, but
Teresa has completely changed her life. After 20 years of smoking, she
completely stopped in just a week. We also met Juan! Juan is Teresa's
son who is deaf.
Juan is incredible. We have been learning sign language to communicate
more with him and it is incredible to be around him. He is the
happiest kid ever. He is always smiling and making jokes. He loves
everyone. It is amazing because now I can actually understand what he
is saying and have a small conversation with him in sign language.
I could go on and on about how much I love Juan and Teresa. Basically
we met Teresa, we taught her about the gospel of Jesus Christ, how she
can repent and change her life, and then she did it. We taught her
about the Book of Mormon and she hasn't put it down since. She said it
has given her so much strength. She reads every night with Juan,
translating to him what is happening in the book. The day before her
baptism, I asked her why she was making all these changes, she said
that she has talked with people from many churches, but she felt from
the beginning like God was telling her "this is the true church". She
had smoked one cigarette the day before her interview, and we weren't
sure if we should wait longer or not. But as we read Mosiah 18 with
her, where it talks of the people of Alma who wanted to serve Christ
and help others the rest of their lives, Who then were baptized.
Teresa almost began to cry and said, "this is what I want." We could
both feel that she was ready. We scheduled the interview, the next day
the zone leaders came to interview her. During the interview one of
the elders was talking with us and Juan. He asked us why Juan wasn't
being baptized with his Mom. We told him because we hadn't been able
to teach him because Teresa has to translate everything we say and it
takes a while. After the interview of Teresa, they talked to her for a
second, and then they went with Juan and Teresa and did the interview
for Juan too. It was kind of crazy haha. But they came out and told us
Juan was going to be baptized tomorrow too. Juan was so happy. He was
smiling so much and just filled with joy.
Sunday, we spent the 2nd and 3rd hours of church boiling water and
pouring it in the font because the water was super cold haha. It didnt
really change much, but it was a fun memory. Teresa and Juan changed
their cloths, and we were waiting outside the font, Juan could hardly
contain his excitement. Teresa was baptized first, we watched with
Juan as he saw his Mom be baptized. After, I signed to Juan that now
it was his turn, he was going to be baptized. He leaped for joy, began
to laugh and clap his hands as we walked to the font. It was hard not
to cry seeing his pure joy. I then watched Juan, pure good Juan, be
baptized. He came out of the water smiling, wiped the water from his
eyes, and gave everyone a big thumbs up. His joy was contagious.
Seeing his pure desire to follow Christ and his pure joy from doing it
filled me with a desire to never ever do anything bad again. This boy
Juan is so good, so pure, and so loving that he makes everyone around
him want to be more good and more pure. He is incredible. I love Juan
and Teresa so much. The joy I feel for them is indescribable. That joy
Juan felt is the reason Christ did what He did for us, so that all of
us who are much more impure than Juan can feel his same joy.
I love this gospel. I love Jesus Christ. I know that baptism in the
Church of Jesus Christ is the way to become completely pure, and start
a new life of discipleship.
This is Christ's Gospel. He is preparing people who want to change and
want to use His atonement. We just have to OPEN OUR MOUTHS to show
them what Christ wants them to know. Christ does all the work of
preparing them, we just have to stop worrying, doubting, and listening
to the excuses of Satan and open our mouths. So then the Savior can do
the miracles for them and change them forever.
Everyone go and be happy this week! I love you all so much!
Elder Heath Tenney
at 4:45 PM