So to answer everyone questions, yes, they do celebrate Valentine´s day here. It´s not nearly as big. They had heart decorations in some stores, but there aren´t any traditions or anything. We, naturally, seeing as we are living the nun life currently, did not celebrate Valentine´s day.
This week, nothing in particular happened. We finally taught Carlos again after some time of him kind of avoiding us. We tried to find out why it is so hard for him to commit. In the missionary world we say that he has an iceberg; meaning there’s some underlying reason why he isn’t progressing anymore. We´re really trying to receive that revelation as to what our next step should be with him.
We met some interesting characters this week. Antonieta, she is this middle age woman that lives alone with her dog. She agreed to meet with us. She recently lost her mother, so she´s kind of struggling. But she considers herself very experienced and spiritual. So first she asks us if we can teach her something that will make her feel better about her mother’s passing. Naturally, we start teaching the plan of salvation. We talk about the pre-existence and earth-life and she gets frustrated with us because she wanted a powerful scripture specifically about her mother. We explain to her that we will get to that and to be patient. To move things along, I pull out my hand painted plan of salvation visual aid. At that point she gets very upset and just tells us how offended she was. She was just like “I´m sorry this is very childish. I already knew all of this ever since I was a little girl.” She actually picked it up off the table. At that point I was a little taken aback and frankly very frustrated. I was feeling the spirit leave and then I decided to pray in my heart to have more charity towards her. I prayed the Lord would grant me patience to talk to her with the spirit. After that quiet prayer, the lesson began to turn around. She got kinder and more reasonable. We shared our testimonies with her and it was actually quite a pleasant experience. I just thought that was so interesting that I prayed to change my own heart, but what ended up happening instead was that she was the one who changed her behavior. I could have easily asked for her to calm down, but I didn’t. I asked that I would be the one who would change. That was a neat experience for me.
We also had a lesson with one of the investigators who comes to church very regularly. Sister Nagliati taught him once and said that it wasn’t worth it to keep trying. I wasn’t planning on teaching him but we decided that we would try it out because he seems so nice. Well it was quite the experience I’ll tell you that. He basically tried teaching us the whole lesson. He studies the bible very intensely and thinks he knows everything. Basically, he believes in the apostasy, but also that the true church hasn’t been restored yet and that eventually all churches will come to the unity of the faith. We tried so fervently to get him to pray if these things are true but he is very firm in his beliefs and very prideful. The saddest part was that he gets so wrapped up in profound doctrine that he misses the essence of the gospel. He doesn’t even believe that baptism is necessary for salvation. We just ended that lesson as best as we could and happily sent him on his way. I hope one day he’ll get it.
Also, Antonio gave his first talk this Sunday. It was pretty adorable. Also, Manuela has been sick lately. Bishop actually told us that he had a dream that she was in the last days of her life. I love her to death I would be so sad. Other than that, not much else new.
Love you all