Hello Family and Friends,
This was a REALLY great week!!!! Our investigator Flavio got baptized on Saturday!!!!! Flavio is the 29 year old man we have been teaching who is 85% deaf and who only speaks and understands a little Creole. This entire week we passed by his little cardboard box/metal sheet home every day to make sure he was ready and prepared to be baptized. And EVERY DAY without fail he would get the most giant grin on his face and yell out "OOOPA!!!" each time we walked up to his door in excitement to see us. Flavio was seriously the most excited person I have ever scene to be baptized.
On Saturday Sister Namwanje and I were the first ones at the church for the baptism, so we stood and waited out front of the church building to wait for the others and for keys. After 10 minutes, we look down the road and see Flavio walking sooo proudly towards the church with the biggest smile on his face with his striped button up shirt and poke-a-dot tie!! AND he spent what little money he has on going to the barber to get clean shaven and cut his hair to look his best for his baptism day :D When asking him how he was feeling he replied in his 'deaf accent creole', "Mi sta feliz! Mi te aleg no mi coracao!"...meaning I am HAPPY! I have happiness in my heart!
The Branch Mission Leader was the one who baptized him. It was so great and the spirit was so strong. I gave a talk on the blessings of the Holy Ghost at the baptism and felt so proud of the 5 who were sitting there in front in their white baptisimal jump suits all with smiles on their faces prepared for baptism. It was a beautiful baptism. After Flavio was emeressed in the water, he turned to me before getting out and gave me a big thumbs up. He was soooo happy!!!! At the end each person who got baptized stood up front one at a time and bore their testimonies. Flavio was the first, and only one to bare his in Creole and not Portuguese. Everybody there was so proud and happy for him. In a way he is kind of like a little kid with his hearing and understanding disability. I felt like a proud mother does when there child has a great achievement. I have wanted nothing but the best for him and have grown to love him as I have watched him come closer to making this important step in life. Now that he has made that choice and step to coming closer to Christ and making that first covenant with God in his life, I could not feel more happy for him!!!
Sister Holland also had a baptism this week. It was exciting to be there together and both see the change the gospel made in lives of people who we have grown to love through teaching them. It is amazing to see how far we have come since our time together training in the MTC...and now here to where those we teach are making those life changing choices!! The gospel is incredible and this church is true!! I have never KNOWN it more strongly in my life then I do now as I see what it does to those who accept it and live it for the first time in their lives. It is a blessing to be here and represent Christ as I teach about the truths of his gosple being here on the earth again today.