So guess what.... Manuel got baptized this week! Yay! It was a really nice baptism, a lot of ward members came. Arcos is a really really great ward for fellowshipping.
I don´t know if I ever explained this, but Manuel has had several.... I don´t actually know what they are. In Spanish they´re called infartos cerebrales, which literally translates to brain heart attacks. But because of this, he struggles to control is movements. That´s why he´s in a wheel chair, he can technically walk, but it is very difficult and very dangerous for him, because he falls a lot. That´s also why he can´t read and why he talks in a very slow, very deliberate way. In the baptism we had a chair in the baptismal font, but it was still very hard for him to get baptized. Either a hand or a foot or a knee would slip up without him wanting to. And even worse, his hands didn´t really have strength to keep his nose plugged and his mouth closed, so yeah, it was an uncomfortable experience for him. But after 4 tries, he got it! And Manuel is so great, he never complained and he never gave up, he knew that he wanted to get baptized, so that´s what he did, no important how difficult it was. After the fourth time finally worked, he came up out of the font and said, "They finally got my horns out!" It was pretty funny. He´s always been golden, and I know he´ll be a faithful saint.
I love what he said in his baptismal interview too, our district leader shared it with us later that night. The two of them entered the room for the interview, and then Manuel started by saying, "Hermano, with your permission, I would like to be baptized this Saturday."
We really have been blessed here in Arcos, and we have been seeing a lot of miracles. Just one more that I really wanted to share with you all. This past week we had a lot of meetings, studies with other sister missionaries, consejo, the baptism, and basically a lot going on. So even though we had a high goal for new investigators, but Saturday, we had 0. After the baptism we only had a couple of hours to work, and it was full of appointments. One of the appointments fell, so we decided to look for some of our future investigators to hopefully teach one or two of them and convert them into new investigators. We went looking for one named Damaris (it´s actually an interesting story of how we met her and contacted her too, but that´s a story for another day). We knocked on the door and her sister answered and invited us in. Then Damaris came down, then their parents, and suddenly we had a family of 4 new investigators! But much more important than the numbers are the people. This family needs a lot of help. The mother, Lupita, has had major back pain for over 10 years, and she shared with us about all her trials that she has had. This family has basically every problem you can imagine. And Lupita was considering suicide when we showed up. She told us that she knows that the Lord sent us there to help her and her family, and I know it too. I know that the Lord sent us to that family not to find new investigators, but to save. I just hope and pray that they accept this gospel, because I know it is exactly what they need to save their family and their lives.
That is real missionary work. That is the Lord´s work. The Lord doesn´t call us to bring people into the church. He calls us to serve and to save. That´s why Manuel kept trying until he could finally be baptized, because he knew that he wasn´t just joining a church, he was becoming clean of his sins, making a sacred covenant with God, and preparing to return to His presence someday. And that´s why the Lord guided us to this family, not to convince them of our religion, but to give them the opportunity to be healed through the power of Jesus Christ.And speaking of healing through Jesus Christ, enjoy Easter everyone! It´s the day that we remember the most important even that ever happened in the whole history of the world! The resurrection of our Savior Jesus Christ.
Well, love you all, keep reading the Book of Mormon every day!