It was good to hear from y'all and how things are going. Sounds like everyone survived with Dad being gone. I wish I could be there and support everyone while Dad is gone. Even though I am going to FREEZE in Minot, I am looking forward to being there with the family. I turn twenty next month; time is surely ticking by for me. I kinda don't want to leave SoCal because I love the weather here but Minot is where home is now. I was super excited to hear that Corina made the softball team! I know she was stressing out over that so it is good to hear that she did make it and that she actually did well at her tryout. Maya has also been on my mind with everything that has been going on with her. That is exciting that he gets to come home tomorrow! I also got an email from Grandma Romney as well. I love hearing from the family and how things are going.
This week was a crazy one for me. We did exchanges Tuesday and Wednesday, had multi-zones on Thursday, it rained Friday and Saturday and I was about dead on Sunday doing double church. It was also filled with crazy highs and crazy lows too so that all added to the... funness of the week. Our exchanges went well on Tuesday, Elder Ete went into Spanish land with Elder Craig. We taught Ken again that night and had an interesting lesson with him. He came to Blake's baptism and he had many questions about it. He was comparing our service to how "traditional" Christian churches do their baptisms. Kind of a shocking thing is that he is really toying with the idea of getting baptized. The only thing that is stopping him is that he wants to know EVERYTHING about the Church. I read him Doctrine and Covenants 20:37 and told him that he doesn't need to know everything. I felt like he really took that to heart and is really starting to feel the magnitude of what this baptism could do for him. We also committed him to come take a church tour with us in the Redlands building and he accepted. It has been fun teaching him and seeing his progress.
Wednesday, Elder Randall and I had a very spiritual and crazy experience. We went and taught a lesson and only took half of our lunch so we were planning on going back home to eat and then go to our next appointment. Well, we got a referral from the Secretary of the mission for a man in the hospital that was in need of a blessing. My thought process was that we would go home, eat, then head over there after our scheduled appointment. Well, that changed after the Secretary actually called us and told us that we need to go there ASAP. So we ditched lunch (shocking, I missed a meal!) and went to the hospital. It took us a while to get into the ICU but we finally did and we got rushed to Lucio's bedside. When I saw what condition he was in, it broke my heart. He was hooked up to all sort of machines, IV's, and the whole nine yards. The family wanted us to give him a blessing so we proceeded to do so. When I went to seal the anointing, I had something happen to me that I had never felt before. I went to bless Lucio that he would get through this and fight through but when that thought came to mind, the Spirit fought me on it. I physically could not say that to him. The Spirit then directed me to release him from this life, that he would see his family one more time before he passed, and that he would be in peace when he saw his Heavenly Father. It was such a humbling and emotional experience for me. Afterwards we left the hospital, we went to the church building to use the restroom and I needed to collect my thoughts before I could return to work. I sat in the chapel, thinking about what happened and I was overcome with emotion. I felt so much love for that man, someone that I had never met before, and yet I felt true love for him. I sat there and cried... I couldn't help it, the Spirit was so strong. I went on the piano, played for a little bit which helped me to feel better, and then we went on our way. It was such a crazy experience that I will never forget.
Thursday we had multi-zones, that we were responsible for hosting. The conference went well but it was super long. I was already exhausted from the day before so it was a challenge to stay focused but I made it. After we got that all cleaned up, we went and had our church tour with Ken. That man has had a rough life... He wants children so bad but his ex-wife didn't think the same. She even practiced her own form of birth control when she found out she was pregnant and didn't even tell him. He would have four kids if it wasn't for her... I couldn't imagine what he has gone through. He likes the church and we tried to get him to come but he didn't attend on Sunday. We aren't giving up on him!
Friday was a crazy up and down day. Something happened to the truck that I had to take care of and that I stressed over for days. I got it taken care of but it was super stressful. Our lesson with Anita went well. Her whole situation is getting crazy, both mission presidents are now getting involved so we will see what happens. Plus it rained all day so that wasn't much fun to work in. Saturday was busy making visits and working all day. We taught Esther and that went well. She actually wants to move the baptism up so we will be having a baptism next Sunday! Her brother-in-law is actually going to do the baptism. It is going to be a huge Samoan party afterwards too for the baptism. And I will be spending my birthday with the family so that will be fun as well!
Sunday went well, crazy with doing splits to cover both wards but we made it happen. We had two missionary talks: one outgoing and one homecoming. They were both really good. The homecoming talk really hit home to me with what he said. I can't wait to get to know Kyle and learn from his mission experience. Our dinner was fun also, we got to share a huge family dinner with the family. Overall, it was a crazy but good week.
I love y'all and miss y'all tons. I will be watching for the package this week. Hope to hear from you soon.