March 21, 2016 Portalegre, Portugal
Mom and Dad!
M_ finally got BAPTIZED!!! It was such a great experience! I think the greatest miracle definitely happened before the baptism. Seeing M_’s attitude change, his ideas about God, church, life, even coffee, was so cool. I think one of the most effective things we did was act in faith. When M_ accepted a baptismal date, we acted immediately and informed all of the members. They started talking to him about baptism and made plans to get there. He couldn’t back out then, haha! He quit all his addictions and followed the Savior’s example by being baptized. This week, we’re going to help him be ready to receive the priesthood, so we can have TWO priesthood holders in the group, YEAH!!!
The actual baptism went really well. The 19th of March was actually Father’s Day here (Happy Portuguese Father’s Day, Dad!) and there were a bunch of activities going on at the same time. There was a bunch of food too! 😉 Some wonderful sisters there sat us all down, fed us, and congratulated M_. During the Baptismal service, I had the feeling that I had no idea how we had made it to that point. Everything just kind of fell into place! It was a sublime reminder to me that the Lord knows whom he wants in His church. We are called to labor in his vineyard and do his work for his children. Also, my companion’s whole family came to see our baptism. His dad actually presided, because our Branch President wasn’t able to be there! But Elder M is leaving in a couple of weeks for Boston. He’s going to enter the MTC with a baptism already under his belt. I wondered how cool it would have been to have you and Dad here with me at the baptism, like Elder M’s parents… It’d be really cool. But then again, it’d be difficult to see you guys leave again afterwards. Mom would probably cry 😉
I don’t have too much more to say this week other than talk about M_’s baptism. It was a really serene moment for me and all the members of Portalegre. I’ll never forget it.
I love you all sooooo much. Thanks for all of your prayers. I know they helped M_ to be baptized.
It’s so cool to hear about your family history adventures. Sounds like you’ve become somewhat of a genealogy guru by now. You’ll really have to get me hooked up when I get back. I have no time to do any kind of indexing right now, but the Portuguese names look super cool. If the people are Portuguese, they should be really easy because it’s illegal to name your kids something if the name is not on this big old list. Pretty much everyone here is named João, Luis, Carlos, or António.
The way you received inspiration on your family history work is so cool! There are definitely no coincidences there. I got slightly lost in your description of names, dates, places and family relations, but it sounds like a really incredible experience!
That’s really cool that you got to use that new software training in your work. It’s always good to learn new skills and how to use new programs. It’s crazy to think how much technology has changed in just my lifetime. Remember using dial-up internet? Ha!
Love you Dad,