Monday, November 22, 2010
Josh's friend Alex Rodriquez was baptized on Saturday by Joel. It was AWESOME! The 11 & 12 year old boys in our neighborhood are amazing. There are about 10 of them. They have no apprehension when it comes to talking to someone about the gospel. They want to know why their friends aren't LDS and then take them over to the missionaries to change it. Our neighbors the Meacham's sent their daughter off on a mission 6 months ago and then the missionaries moved in. They where a threesome because 2 were from the Salt Lake area and were called to Mexico but are here until they receive their visa's and Elder Hernandez is from Spain called to serve here. So they are part of the Spanish branch here in southern Utah but the boys in our neighborhood jumped on them and got them starting to teach Alex who's parents speak both English and Spanish. So everyday after school they would gather in front of the Meacham's to give Alex a discussion and to help the boys fix a flat tire or play football. It was so much fun to watch how they supported each other and how the boys look up to the Elder's. These boys are going to be great missionaries when they get older because they are great missionaries now!
In the first picture, the boy 2 to the left of Josh was just baptized last month and the one on the end next to him was taking the discussions but stopped. And then in the 3rd picture down, the kid in the middle with Alex is the next to be baptized. We are working on him and his little brother right now. Joel taught his Mom in High School and she was raised in the church but became inactive so her boys weren't baptized but we'll change that.
We love living in this house and know it's where we are supposed to be. We have always lived in places where there were very few children so our kids have never really had other kids to play with. But the other day I was outside with the new Primary President introducing her to Alex and I counted how many boys were in our yard and there were 16! Sophie said that the day before there were 18. I love it. I'm glad they feel comfortable enough to hang out here.
Joel just got called to be the 1st Counselor in the Young Men. Which he LOVES! And he is in charge of the boys that are 14-16 yrs old. Joel immediately found out who wasn't coming and who lived in the ward boundaries that wasn't baptized and went to their houses to introduce himself. We have a boy who is 14 and his older brother is a member but he is not. Joel played basketball with him one night and now they are best friends. Yesterday he came to the fireside with us and Joel asked him if he wanted to start taking the discussions and he said Yes. So they are setting that up right now. I am so thankful for the youth of our church and the huge testimonies they have and the courage they have to share them. They are a great example to all of us adults and especially their parents who are inactive, non-members or like us and just a little afraid of starting up the conversation without a missionary standing right next to us.
Well, the Spanish speaking missionaries were moved down a mile or two closer to the branch and we were given 2 English speaking missionaries who were actually called to serve here in our stake. The boys of course were the first ones to welcome them into the neighborhood and to start them off right. I saw the boys all gathered outside our house so I went to introduce myself. Elder Duffin is from Florida and Elder Penfold is from California. Both very nice boys. The next day I got a message from my good friend Corina asking if I could look up her nephew who was just transferred to Washington. Well, it was Elder Penfold. You should have seen the look on his face when I told him the next day that 3 of his aunts and his Mom all said Hi. I told him how his grandparents where like second parents to me growing up and that I was going up to Lehi for Thanksgiving and would see all of his family. Then I called my Mom and asked if she could get a hold of his grandma and see if she wanted me to bring back anything for him for Christmas or whatever. It's really been fun. I think he is extra careful around me so that I don't have a reason to call his mom. Which I'm sure I won't because he is a really neat kid and is a little older that the other missionaries. The last picture is of me and Elder Penfold which I emailed to his family and his Mom said she couldn't stop smiling.
I love the missionaries and the missionary program. I especially love that I can help out here in little old Washington Utah. I am thankful that my kids have these great examples right here in our neighborhood. It's been an amazing experience and testimony builder for all of us.