Another fantastic week in the WKM. So first off, we had another couple hours spent helping out with the animal shelter. Insulation is not fun stuff to be putting on a ceiling. But alas, it was still a cool experience being involved with something like this and seeing the community come together to help one another out.
So Thursday night we had probably one of the sketchiest referrals I have received on my mission. We get a call from a member late Thursday night saying he has a friend that he needs us to go teach pronto. He tells us his name is Juan Jose (not really), he lives down in a part of town called Little Mex (it’s down the hill, little bit more run down, well, the name pretty much implies everything you need to know), and the password is "El Grupo del Siglo" but we didn't hear correctly the last word (I'll come back to this part). He didn't know where Juan Jose lived specifically he just knows he lived in Little Mex and is well known down there. So we say okay, wonder how we are gonna find him, and go home for the night. So my comp is looking in the dictionary what siglo meant (it means century in case you were wondering) but also comes to find out that the word sigilo (which when pronounced over a phone could easily be misinterpreted by two gringos to mean either) means secret. So translated, the password is now either "Group of the Century" or "Group of the Secret."
Well my companion and I come to the conclusion that we are basically trying to find a drug lord based off the password and are a little worried about what was gonna happen, assuming we were going to somehow get involved with an underground drug ring or something of that effect. Well we do some investigation and start knocking doors to see if anybody knows him (some do) but we never end up finding him. Sunday comes around and we talk with the daughter of the man that called us and ask her if she knows the guy and then tell her the password her dad had given us and she just starts laughing. Apparently, it’s just a little Mexican band they are in on the side. Although I was secretly disappointed I wasn't going to convert some drug king pin, I can now know my mother will sleep safely knowing I'm not chasing drug lords down anymore. Always comforting.
And on the more comforting side of things, we had another baptism of a man named Jesse (not his actual name). We found him my companion's first week as a missionary while out tracting and knocking doors. We went through the teaching process and had given him a baptismal date and got about half way through when all of a sudden he just dropped off the face of the earth for 2 weeks. Didn't answer the door, wouldn't pick up the phone or respond to text messages, nothing. So we are about to give up when all of a sudden he shows up to the Daily Dose English classes the church offers. We were super excited to see him and talk to him afterwards, when we come to find out he hadn't actually gotten offended by us, rather his roommates didn't like us coming over and waking them up (at 6PM when most normal people are up might I add...). Well that night when we were conversing with Jesse, we also discover that he had been reading the Book of Mormon and was ready to take the next step. Another little gem we found out, some of his siblings - thousands of miles away and with not much contact beyond the occasional phone call - had also converted and found the restored gospel about 2 years prior. Small world right? So we continue on with the teaching process and things start going smoothly until about Friday night, when everything that could go wrong did go wrong. We still had one final lesson to teach him so we set up a time to meet Friday night (the baptism was scheduled for Saturday) but something came up and he ended up not making it, so we schedule a meeting for an hour before the baptism since we needed to teach him the last lesson. Well Saturday we had a zone meeting that morning out in the middle of nowhere (the city is like WAY out there) and since there wasn't much phone service our phone died unbeknownst to us since it wasted all the battery trying to find service, so we had to try and go in blind since we couldn't afford to go back out to our house and pick up the charger. Well the time rolls around for when Jesse is supposed to show up, and he isn't there. 5 minutes past, still reasonable for him to be late, so no worries. 10 minutes, stress levels go up partially. 15 minutes, pretty high stress now. 20 minutes we think about calling it off but we don't have a phone to call it off so we keep waiting when at long last he walks in and apologizes because his car had almost died. Because apparently nothing can ever go smoothly in life when you need it to... Well the service is about to start when we get a text from one of the speakers he is still in Tri-Cities and won't be able to make it (again I repeat what I have said before: the gift of expounding the scriptures is a thing). The baptism gets going and my comp and Jesse go down into the font, and apparently one of the water heaters had broken or wasn't working right because the water was pretty cold. Well thankfully it’s not doctrinal that the water be warm so the baptism was still valid and the night ended pretty good and the confirmation the following Sunday went off without a hitch so all in all, it was one for the history books. It was such an amazing experience working with him and helping Jesse along this path.
And for the quote of the week it has no correlation with the preceding story it was just a cool one I took from the board outside the local Lutheran Church because I thought it was pretty good:
"Every saint has a past, every sinner has a future."
Wise words to live by. Never judge. You don't know where they were before or where they can go from here.
Have a fantabulous week and enjoy getting ready for the month of holidays where calories don't matter!