|Me and Jane Seymour aka Sister Elmer|
Friends and family,
I can't believe it's almost Thanksgiving! The Visitors' Center is a little chilly (as always) but it was in the high sixties today and barely feels like fall. Sister Jones and I have had an... interesting week and she keeps repeating the words, "Oh my mom would be so upset if she could see me right now." Basically we've been trying to follow up with a lot of formers and had some run-ins with some interesting/angry/hilarious people and have found ourselves in some places that can only be described as "sketch business." We've spent a lot of time in the projects this week and my thoughts float back and forth between that youtube video that Isaac used to quote constantly and just how lucky I am to have all that I do. People are generally more welcoming and willing to listen in humble circumstances and it's been a reminder for me to humble myself as well.
The Visitors' Center has been busier as of late and so of course a lot of fun. People seem to be coming in waves. Not just the number, but also why they're here. We were talking to another companionship and they mentioned that they are meeting recent convert after recent convert while we are meeting countless young girls preparing for missions and people who are recently divorced looking for direction. It's amazing how an experience with one person will prepare you to help the next person that walks in the door. What also is amazing is that for whatever reason many people have no qualms just telling us their entire life story. It's rather interesting really. I'll mention one from this week that was particularly exciting. A Filipino man in his early 30s came in and immediately sat down in the Christus. As we talked with him we learned that he was just snapping a picture of the temple while in traffic on Santa Monica to send to a cousin of his who is Mormon because he thought it would be a good joke. His cousin texted back to "GO," and told him about the VC so here he was. We asked him questions about himself and he just gushed to us about how lost he was and how much he wants to change his life, but he didn't know how. He was embarrassed and kept saying "I don't know why I'm telling you this." We talked to him about the spirit and assured him that through the atonement he could be changed. He loved the Visitors' Center and said he had never felt so much love in one place. I guess the long and short of it is that at the end we invited him to refer himself. He agreed and seemed very excited and even a little impatient to get going. It was a miracle and we're looking forward to following up with him over the phone.
Speaking of VC miracles, I was talking with one of the senior couples and Richard (who we teach at the Visitors' Center so everyone knows and loves him) and they mentioned to him that this week ten or eleven people have come in requesting Books of Mormon after seeing the musical. Richard just laughed and said "You see! 90% of people who see that musical will think Mormonism is a joke, but I'm more concerned with the 10% like me who are intrigued." He is still doing great! We had a little scare with his baptismal date this week because he wanted the colleague who sort of introduced him to be there and she isn't available on the 9th. In the process of figuring out that she can't come at all his faith was a little shaken as she explained that she isn't actually very active. He was a little shocked at first, but it didn't discourage him. In fact, being the wonderful man that he is, he has now determined that one of his responsibilities as a new member will be to reactivate less active members with his testimony that is in his words "on fire." "You have to work at it!" He explained to us emphatically. "I'm talking every day here!" Ha ha he just gets it. More power to him. I only hope he doesn't wear himself out. Sometimes I get worn out just watching him! He is probably one of the kindest people I know. He somehow found out that I'm an trainer for the English sisters' areas and the next thing I know he gives me a card congratulating me on my "well deserved promotion." Oh how I wish you could meet him!
We had a great lesson with Susan this week. She still has no desire to keep the commandments and feels that God understands. We talked about the atonement and posed the question, "If God is all powerful, why can't he just choose to forgive us? Why did His Son have to atone?" I think it was a major turning point for her and we were so grateful for the spirit in preparing to teach her.
Everyone that we're finding seems to be leaving for Thanksgiving, but we have a few potentials that we have appointments with this week so hopefully that will mean good updates next week.
I'm out of time. I love you bunches :)