Wednesday, July 27, 2011

A Baptism!

Our Baptism

At the Baptism

Happy "Hump Day"

Hello Family!!!

Man, this week was sweet! And crazy, but still sweet! Our young man that we've been teaching was baptized on Saturday and it was amazing, his mother and grandparents, who are all non members, were at the baptism! It was such a cool experience though, because his dad had a lot of "firsts," he gave his first talk on baptism, he performed the actual ordinance of baptism for the first time, and he gave his first priesthood blessing! And all of them were for his son, which made it that much cooler! Both the son and the dad had very spiritual experiences! Hopefully the rest of their family did too!

As for our other investigators, we are still working with the young lady we've been teaching, and she actually came to the baptism! She is just having a harder time accepting the gospel, she says that she feels it is true, but there are a few other things that she is getting hung up on, we had a good meeting with her yesterday though, and we will be going by tomorrow as well, not too much new going on with her right now though.

Last week we actually went to dinner with a couple we've been teaching, they took us out for Sushi!! It was good, I don't know if it was as good as Tokai, but since we are in Maryland, they have real crab in their sushi, not imitation! haha but they are doing good, still moving pretty slow, but she asks a lot of good questions, we are hopefully going to get them up to the Visitor's Center soon, I will let you know how that goes. We did meet with another couple, it was interesting, it turned out to be more of an informational visit with them rather than spiritual unfortunately, but hopefully we will be able to take some members over there, and they will change their minds!

Well, I love you guys!!! I hope you have a wonderful week! Talk to you next week!

- Elder Schaap

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

The Importance of a Testimony

Hello Family!!!

So good to hear from you guys! Things are still going really well for us here! The young man we've been teaching is getting baptized this week on Saturday the 23rd actually instead of the 24th, so that is going to be sweet! Our other investigator, however will not be getting baptized... this week, she no longer has a date set, but I will talk about that later. So we had a good meeting with our baptism candidate yesterday, we went over kind of some of the logistics of the service and things like that, and he is ready to go! We did have kind of a speed bump with his mom last night, but we got everything smoothed out, and his dad told us that some of their family is coming into town for the baptism, but they will only be here on Saturday, so we are going to see if we can do the confirmation on Saturday as well!! (His family are not members just FYI) So that is going to be pretty sweet!

As for the young lady we've been teaching, she is still doing good, and we will be meeting with her tomorrow, she kind of realized that she wasn't ready to be baptized this week, but the reason she wasn't ready was because she hadn't been doing some of the things that we had been asking her to do. So we are going to try again to set a goal for her to be baptized, and I will let you know how that goes next week!

We also went to the home of the couple we've been teaching again yesterday, it went really well, she is still asking us all sorts of questions, and I think that she is starting to realize that her beliefs are very similar to ours (if not the same). I feel like she is overlooking what matters most, yes it is good to know the doctrine of the church, but I still don't even understand all of the minute details of the gospel. What is important though, is that I have a testimony that the Book of Mormon is true, and that Joseph Smith was called as a prophet and to restore the gospel, as long as I know that, the rest will come with time. I just wish we could get that across to her.

We had another cool experience yesterday as well, Elder Kennedy and I were checking on a less-active member, and we decided that we would go try and talk to a lady that we saw walk into her house, it turns out that they had met with the missionaries from this ward only about 5 or 6 months ago, and that the only reason they stopped is because they moved and lost contact! They have a 13 month old baby, and he teaches Physics at a private college, we didn't get to talk to them for too long, but we are going back next week, so ask me about it then!

Well, I think this might be the longest email I have sent so far on my mission! haha! I hope that you guys have a great week, and it was good to hear from you! Love you!

- Elder Schaap

P.S. Sorry, don't have my camera with me, I will send pics next week though!

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

It's been a year! Plus...Baptisms!

Hello Family!!

Things are continuing to go well for us! We are still working a lot with the young man and young lady we've been teaching. He is still doing well, we were a little concerned about how his mother was feeling about us coming over so frequently, so we decided that we had to sit down with her for a bit and lay everything out so that she didn't feel like we were hiding anything from her. It turned out that she was fine with it, her only concern was when she didn't know beforehand that we would be coming over to their house so everything is good there! Now Elder Kennedy and I just have to get everything planned out for the baptism on the 24th!

She is still doing good, I don't know if I told you guys or not, but she takes care of her mother full time, and so this last week her mother went to the hospital and she couldn't make it to church again, but she is still planning on the 24th as well! We have had a few good meetings with both of them this past week, and they are moving right along!

Also, we went over to the home of the couple we've been teaching yesterday again to help them with their yard, and it was sweet! She is starting to ask more and more questions! This past week at her Bible study class that she goes to, she asked the people their if it would be ok if she invited us to come with, and they were fine at first... until they found out that we were "mormon missionaries" which she didn't take to well, so she is becoming more and more interested about our beliefs, hopefully we will be going to the Visitor's Center with them soon!

Well that's all I got for ya this week, Love you guys and hope to hear from you soon!!

- Elder Schaap

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Helping Neighbors

Pic 1 - District Picture

Pic 2 - A ghetto house... the picture doesn't really do it justice though.

Hello Family!

Good to hear from you guys as always!! Things are continuing to go well for us here, and we found out a few nights ago that both Elder Kennedy and I will be staying here in Bowie for another 6 weeks!! So we are excited!

We had a good week this week, I don't think I told you about the couple we've been meeting with last week. They are neighbors of one of the members in our ward, and he recently shattered both of his heels (long story) and so he is pretty much out of commission as far as any real physical work goes, so we went over there and mowed their lawn, and their neighbor told us that his lawn is usually pristine, and he takes really good care of it, so Elder Kennedy and I were thinking that we had to be on the top of our game. So afterward we asked the wife how we did, and she told us that the lawn was the best she had ever seen it! And then as we were leaving, we ended up talking for like 40 minutes or so about the restoration of the gospel, and she is really interested now!

As for the young man we've been teaching, he is doing well, we met with him twice this last week, and we are meeting with later on today! He is doing really good, and he is now scheduled to be baptized on the 24th of this month, and things are getting better all the time!

And with the young lady we've been teaching, we were able to go to the Visitor's Center with her on Saturday, which went really well, and she asked a lot of really good questions. She was supposed to come to church on Sunday, and then feed us after, but she called right near the beginning of church telling us that her mother went into the hospital the night before, and that she wasn't going to be able to make it, so we will be meeting with her later this week.

Other than that, not much to report, the 4th of July here was pretty uneventful for us because we had to be in our apartments by 9 o'clock haha so not much happened... we heard some of it though! So mom, the same happened to me, the 4th of July didn't really feel like the 4th of July. Oh, and I did get my package! Thank you!! Everything was in pretty good condition...some of the candies fell out, nothing was melted though! haha so that is good! But I love you guys, and have a good week!!

- Elder Schaap