This week was interesting. We invited half of Braga to our Meet the Mormons activity. Only one non-member showed up. It´s OK though; we realized it was poor planning on our part because it was mother´s day here in Portugal. So most people decided to stay home with their mothers, naturally. The guy who showed up didn’t even want to watch the movie. Instead, we answered all of his questions and ended up teaching a condensed version of all of the lessons. In the end, he still wasn’t very convinced. Later on, we realized that he was a reference from a member. We had asked this guy what religion he belonged to and he said that he preferred not to say. Immediately, I thought that he might be a Jehovah’s Witness. They are infamous for being extremely anti-Mormon here. Turns out I was right and he was a Jehovah’s Witness. Oh well.
This week, we had interviews with President Amorim. It was really good; I learned some really helpful things.
Transfers are coming up and I have a lot of mixed feelings. I´m going to really miss the members here I´ve already been here for so long that I´m practically part of the family. But at the same time, staying in the same area for so long can be hard. Most likely I´ll be leaving.
There weren´t actually a ton of interesting things that happened this week.
We taught a couple of new people last week. First we stopped by Fatima’s. Diogo André, her son, wasn´t home and she didn´t have a lot of time so we just talked to her about what their challenges were. Basically, she told me that she is really worried about her son. He is very intelligent and he exceeded in all of his classes in high school and college, but then something happened and he dropped out. Ever since then, for 5 years, he has been unemployed and living at home. His parents are very worried about him and don’t know what to do to help. I know that the gospel will help him with whatever he is dealing with. His parents, as well, need to be healed by the gospel. Fatima is the sweetest woman I’ve ever met. She has taken in homeless youth on multiple occasions and every day, she feeds 2 elderly ladies in her neighborhood, who live alone! She has so much faith, and has sacrificed so much of herself to serve others. Unfortunately she is missing the truth in her life. She is so kind but she told us that she is still worried that she is going to hell. I don’t know every detail in her life but she needs the gospel to fill a huge hole in her life.
We also taught an African man named Pedro. It was terrible because he only wanted to debate doctrine, instead of listening and accepting the invitation to pray. It’s so hard when people trust more in themselves than in the idea that the Lord can reveal universal truth to each and every one of us.
I´ve been studying a lot in the Doctrine and Covenants lately. One of the things that I think is so interesting is that Christ is Light. Light = Truth. Christ is all truth and all truth comes from Christ. The trick is being able to discern that light, because, as we know, Satan can also imitate an inferior form of light. Our job as missionaries is to help these people recognize this as well. So that they can decide for themselves that it is wrong to pray to Mary, or to pray by flailing and shouting, or that they need to obey the commandments. However, this can only happen if they can have the humility necessary to repent. After we had an influx of people stop talking to us, we talked about it and decided it basically boils down to the fact that these people are not ready to repent. Also, in D&C we learn that very few people will repent in the last days. But there are many out there who will repent and we need to find them.
Well that´s about it. Happy early Mother´s Day to all!
Love Sister Runyan