Well Hello! I hope everyone has enjoyed a great father's day! I for one am very thankful for my Tatay!
What an awesome week! We had 2 baptisms this week! Brother Angel Curioso and Sister Merly Uanang! Gosh I cant even describe how great that feeling is! There is literally a glow in the faces of those who enter into the waters of baptism! Its like such an innocent glow of those who want to follow Jesus Christ in their lives! So they were both just super excited it was awesome! Angel (whose progression in the gospel went super fast!) was especially excited! He has had a lot of support from one of his friends who is also a member and is the one who first suggested to him that he should read the Book of Mormon, invited his mother to come all the way to watch it. Angel is boarding in Tuguegarao, but they're from Quirino province which is 4 hours away! And she came! That was awesome to see both of them together and how much he loves her and also wants her to join. Merly's husband is less active in the church, but in one of our last lessons with her, she expressed to us how much she wants to live the gospel as a family and doesnt quite understand why her husband is less-active. We talked about how that's what we would really focus on with him and helping them work towards a goal of the temple. So brother came to the baptismal service and in my minds eye, I saw them all together at the door of the temple, all dressed in white and sealed as an eternal family with their daughter as well! It was one of the sweetest feelings I've had! Thinking of them receiving the greatest blessing this world has to offer! An eternal family!
But anyway, seeing these people makes me think of one of my favorite stories/phrases in the Book of Mormon when Alma teaches and baptizes at the waters of Mormon "Behold, here are the waters of Mormon, [...] and now, as ye are desirous to come into the fold of called, and be called his people [...] what have you against being baptized in the name of the Lord, as a witness before him that ye have entered into a covenant with him, that ye will serve him and keep his commandments, that he may pour out his spirit more abundantly upon you." "And when the people heard this, they clapped their hands for joy and exclaimed: This is the desire of our hearts." I saw that in these people in our day. God is good!
Anyways, I also saw this week people who have such amazing faith in Christ and in God even though their situation is rough. The Balatico family is one. Their Tatay (father) got into a pretty bad accident that fractured his wrist pretty good. Because they're really poor, they cant afford the necessary operation to fix his hand. When we went and visited them this last week, Tatay's hand was swollen really good! He was just saying "Eh it doesnt hurt that bad! It'll heal!" He's waving it around moving it in all different ways. But we shared a message about The trials of the early saints and especially Joseph's experience in Liberty Jail in D&C. Nanay started crying and saying that it is hard, but immediately redirected her thoughts to her faith in God. I really do love these people and am soooooo thankful that I have been assigned here in Ward 4!