This week has been crazy, as a companionship we have had a total of 13 lessons with a member present, which is fetching crazy. We´ve been pushing hard to get lessons with members in and we also have several members who are just sooooo bacán that they practically beg to be taken to lessons with us and are genuinely excited to help us missionaries. HOORAY!!
The majority of these lessons (when I say majority I mean like three or four, but not because I can´t count, what I really mean is that the person we have taught the most this week, why the fetch didn´t I just say that) have been with Hilda. I mentioned her in my last Email as Ilda because I hadn´t yet seen how they spell it here in Chilé, but they are the same-- to clear up any confusions that I am sure silent ¨H¨s have created.
Anywho, Hilda is about seventy years old and showed up to church on her own last Sunday. We went to teach her for the first time this Wedsnesday. When we arrived, with another member of course, she had a table set and ready, her book of mormon, and a notebook she had been using to study the Book of Mormon, in which she had written descriptions of the introduction, the testimonies of the three witnesses, the eight witnesses, and joseph smith, and of the first four chapters of Nephi. Elder Gomez and I were almost dancing when she began to explain to us what she had learned. We taught her the Restoration, which was more like a group study session of the Restoration, and invited her to be baptized the 15th of this month, which she accepted.
No big surprise, Hilda is what we call una Mormona seca ( a dry Mormon), which is to say that she is someone who has essentially been Mormon her whole life by her demeanor and, in some cases, unconsious obedience to God´s commandments, all that she is lacking in being a Mormon is, that´s right, the water/dunking/(or as some people like to call it) Baptism. Hilda really is a ¨dry Mormon¨ and in some cases more. She lives alone, but is super out-going and also a very professional person, she speaks very directly and is honest as...something that is really, really honest. We had three other opportunities to teach her this week, one of which was at a Noche de Hogar with a member family, she had also attended the Noche de Hogar we´d had the night before, during which she may or may not have been knocked out of her chair by a member. However, we were all being knocked out of our chairs as it was part f the game, she was laughing the whole time too so that makes it ok, right?
Despite my use of the term ¨dry-mormon¨ I don´t believe Hilda was lacking in just the water. I believe that there was one more thing she needed that she now has and that is a testimony of the Book of Mormon. Without that testimony we wouldn´t really be able to help her prepare for baptism or teach her anything worthwhile because everything that we stand for and everything we teach is in that Book.
I have come to realize in my mission what exactly Joseph Smith meant when he said that it is the truest of any Book in existence. Yes I understand that the signifigance of those words are pretty easy to discern, but what I have come to realize in the mission exactly is what that truth is and the significance it has in my life. The Book of Mormon is full of, let´s be honest, fetching awesome stories about brothers fighting to obtain records of their ancestors and laboring to cross the ocean, humongous battles and smaller ones that leave the opposing end literaly un-armed (I fetching love Ammon), but sometimes we don´t look past the awesome stories, or sometimes we don´t even see those awesome stories and we read the Book of Mormon because we always have or someone has asked us to do so. But I have been reading the Book of Mormon in Spanish and it makes more sense to me in another language, for some reason. The Book of Mormon and all the history it contains is about how and why God influenced the lives of Nephi, Ammon, Alma, more Nephis, Moroni, another Nephi, more than one Helaman, and hundreds of other people and the Book of Mormon also clearly states that God is the same, ayer, hoy, y para siempre, which means now, God is in our lives in the same way he was in Nephi´s, in the same way he answered Enos´ prayer, and in the same way he guided and taught every man woman and child in the Book of Mormon he does so today and I know he does because I have seen it.
So remember to read the Book of Mormon every day so you can recognize God working in your life and share the Book of Mormon with anyone who hasn´t had the oportunity to read it and I can tell you that your life will change for the better everyday like it has mine. Plus, the history of Nephi and his descendants really is fetching awesome.
Pictures will have to wait until next p day, dead battery.