I bet your wondering why I didnt send a personal email yet. Well I have now relocated to the mission home and we just finished a family home evening with the mission president and other missionaries leaving in the batch. Everything is winding up and everyone is starting to get more and more antsy. It feels like I left Batangas forever ago, which is my last area. We attended a training today in San Pablo at the LDS Employment Resource Center and the teacher of the class was actually the bishops wife from San Pablo ward 5 my third area. It got me thinking about the real world a little bit. My goal in life is to go to college and work part time at Lowe’s, this is a little flexible plan haha.
I hope you saw the family in the mission email that I sent earlier. That is the Aguilar Family. My whole time here the mission has been counting the amount of families we got fully baptized. It has always been my vision to do that but it just never worked out. We would baptize just the father or just the kid or a single person. When I was back with Elder Abekoon last transfer I told him my final goal in the mission is to get a completed family. We actually found a number of prospects with in the coming weeks and I was really praying for them to come through. Little by little they started falling through with little issues until just this family was left. They were the last strand of hoping connecting me to the mission.
I first met brother one afternoon as we walked by his house I noticed him sitting outside but it wasnt until my back was turned to him that he half jokingly said “hey elder.” Most people are aquainted with the elders anyway or have previously been taught so hearing that does mean to much and many times we tend to brush it off because they are joking. But that time I stopped turned around walked up and shook his hand. I introduced myself as a missionary and when I asked him if he was familiar with that church he half heartedly looked down and said “yes, im a member.” I could tell he felt ashamed because he had obviously become less active. I then continued by asking him questions about his family and I could especially feel there was a deep desire with in him to come back. We then began to return and drop by sometimes with the Elders Quorum president. I recently learned that brother became less active after he had worked abroad in Saudia Arabia after he had brought his book of mormon with him and was reading it one night. Someone entered his living quarters took the book of mormon from him and tore it up in front of him. That was in 1987. He continued in life never returning to the church. When we met his wife and daughter they had no idea that he was a member but mentioned they were looking for a church to establish their Faith in. The rest is history we continued to teach brother changed some of his habits became worthy and was able to dress in white to baptize his wife and daughter. Heavenly Father was preparing this family my whole mission and because I never lost hope we found them and brang them into the fold.
I know the church is true and that consecrated our lives to god is the only way to fully experience the blessings of that church and the gospel in our lives. The Book of Mormon can seal our testimony and anchor it to the other beliefs we already have in life. There is no other church in the world that god proclaims his name to. In the name of Jesus Christ, Amen.
Elder Nathan Polatis