Monday, September 14, 2015

A great week!

This has been a great week although we have been recovering from the tragic loss of the branch president from last week. It seems like eternity since it happened but it also seems like yesterday at the same time. 

Well Monday we taught Liva and Hery from Alma 5. Great chapter, great teachings in there. It's a perfect just self-assessment to help us stay on track to where we need to go and what we need to be doing. After that we taught Philibert and his family. He is the Elder's Quorum President and his wife and older son are kinda less active. We shared a nice little Vatsim-panahy with them from Helaman 5:12. 

Tuesday we had a good day of teaching. We taught Modesta about the Book of Mormon. We are still trying to get him to find a different job and to quit working on Sunday so he can come to church and get baptized but he's kinda lazy. Our next couple times fell through after that so we ended up doing some contacting. We got into one house with a guy that had no idea about anything. The only thing he knew was that he was Catholic. So our teachings didn't even get the chance to go in one ear and out the other but stopped completely at the wall he put up that he was Catholic. Yeah a bit frustrating. We went to a member's house after that, Fabien, and taught him and asked for a referral. He said he would look for someone for us so that should b e good. That night we were able to catch Dada at home and teach him. It's been awhile since we have taught him last because he's been working but we got a new program with him and he is on track to be baptized in October. We also taught Ulrich, a less active member, a really cool guy, that lives close to our house. We had him teach us the Plan of Salvation and we pretended to be investigators. It was fun and we gave him homework to study it up and teach it to us again next week (tomorrow). 

Wednesday we taught Timoty again and they are doing awesome, they just need to come back to church. We got Toky's dad to help us because Toky was still with Sr Hardy in Antsirabe for the burial. He came with us to a less active and to Ordnace and Hanitra. We taught the latter about temples and they loved it. I love talking about the temple with these people. And it was good too because Toky's dad has already been to the temple so he was able to contribute a lot. We found a less active 18 year old name Patrick and taught him about conversion. He hasn't been to church in a long time and the last time we taught him he said he was coming but he didn't. We taught Arlette about baptism and tried to get them more motivated to get married so she can be baptized. Then we taught Mahazo and had a good lesson with him about the Plan of Salvation. Or I guess you could say that he had a good lesson with us because he taught us the plan of salvation. 

Thursday we had a good day as well. We taught Dorcia about the Book of Mormon. He told uis that he has just been really discouraged lately and doesn't want to do this anymore. We told him that the Book of Mormon would help him with whatever problem that he is having if he will read it and trust God. We shared a scripture with him to help him see what comfort the Book of Mormon can give. We taught Emmy with Toky's dad and had a good lesson with her. She said she was going to come to church but she didn't come. We did some contacting and had an interesting encounter. We knocked on one door and a lady answered with her two sons. First, she asked if we believed in Jesus. We explained who we were and the name of our church, which obviously has the name Jesus Christ in it. We explained that we teach the gospel and wondered if there was a time we could come by and share a message with her and her family when everyone was home. She accepted and we set up a time. As we were about to go, she admitted that she thought that we were Jehovah's Witnesses at first (that happens a lot) and wasn't hesitant to give us a time. She said that she only accepts people that believe in Jesus. Then she told us that she doesn't accept those J.W. at all. And then she continued and said that she doesn't the Mormons either. Well that's us. She just didn't know it haha. She told us she was from Tana and that she lived close to the U.S. Embassy before. We explained that the church is pretty big in Tana and that we have a church right next to the embassy. Her eyes narrowed and she put 2 and 2 together but didn't say anything and we left. We went and taught Jean Louis in preparation for his baptism on the 19th and then we taught Dieu Donne and then the other day and had great lessons with all of them.

Friday we taught a bunch of lessons and we were able to talk about the temple with Vololona. It was great and like I said I love talking about the temple. We taught Ordance and Hanitra about the Priesthood and it was a good lesson. Even though they are women it's still important to understand the importance of the Priesthood. We taught Jackie and Eugette by reading from Alma 36, Alma's conversion story. We chose this because Jackie is Muslim and doesn't have a strong belief in Jesus Christ so we showed him why it's important to believe in Jesus. It was a great lesson. 

Saturday we taught a bunch of new contacts that we had made during the week. We went back to the "I don't accept Mormons" lady and to our surprise she let us in. We expected hostility so we had a Book of Mormon with us ready to plant as soon as they got hostile and made us leave. But it never happened. They actually loved it and it was one of the most spirit filled lessons I have been in my whole mission. They are a lovely family with a strong belief in God. The dad has read the Bible from start to finish multiple times and the mom is very knowledgeable in the scriptures. They accepted the Book of Mormon and the Joseph Smith story and loved it. It was a great time. We finished the day with Arlette and had a great lesson with them about missionary work. We got a referral out of it too, a friend of theirs that learned from the missionaries before.

Sunday was good. There we lots of visitors all from Betongolo actually. I recognized them immediately and it was way cool to see them again. After church I did the baptismal interview for Jean Louis and he is getting baptized this Saturday! He is such a humble man and has come a long way. The cleansing power of the Atonement is so real and the gospel changes lives. I've seen it; in myself and in those around me. It's seriously the best thing ever. We had a good amount of teaching appointments yesterday and we had a great lesson with Ordance and Hanitra. Hanitra is starting to warm up to the teachings. She wants to start paying tithing even though she isn't baptized yet. We had a good lesson about our favorite scriptures and challenged them to find one to share with us next time and Hanitra was super excited to do it. Our last few times fell through so we did some street contacting. Elder Heiden thought we should just go home because it is way hard to contact at night here. But we kept going anyway and found some really cool Muslim guys that want to learn from us that we would not have found if we would have just gone home. The Lord blesses us when we keep trying even when we are tired and everything goes wrong.

I haven't seen the branch president's wife. She is in Tana right now I know. She should come back on Tuesday from what I understand. We will go by and see how she is handling things. Thanks for all your thoughts and prayers. 

Elder Coleman

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