This week has been a good week for both Johnston and I! To tell you a little bit about what we did for our 4th of July weekend, we were able to get permission from our AP's to drive down to Boston to stay and watch the fireworks. The weird thing was was that the 4th of July was actually celebrated on the 3rd this year, due to Hurricane Arthur that hit the East Coast pretty hard during the actual day of the 4th... But we were still able to celebrate it that evening with a member who also lives down in Boston. It was so cool to see how many people were along the Charles River during that time! We were able to find a good spot along the River to watch the fireworks, while also being able to hear the Boston Pops being played in the background. Immediately after the fireworks though, the storm (Hurricane Arthur) came in and it started to downpour like crazy! It was pretty much all of Boston in one area trying to run for the train station over by Park St. Man we were drenched! Just like it was in Philly- Great memories Dad haha. But it was such a cool experience to be able to go to Boston to celebrate Independence Day! You guys can probably guess the plans that I might have next year during that time:)
As far as the work is going, we are continuing to find small successes here and there. For example, yesterday, one of our less-actives members came to the pulpit and bore her testimony for the first time in a long time. We also had 31 total people attend our Group, so our numbers as far as attendance is slowly starting to increase as well. Other than that, we have been working a lot with our Bishop to finalize our ward list for the Lowell Ward to determine if these people still live in the area. This has basically been our assignment ever since we've gotten here and now we are almost completed with it. Our next steps are to continue to work with the less-actives that are here in the area along with continuing to invite. That's what we do.
Johnston and I were able to pick up 2 more investigators while tracking the streets- Jose and Segundo from Ecuador. We were able to teach them a solid lesson of the Restoration and the Intro to the Book of Mormon the other day. Jose seemed to have a lot of interest as we were teaching and wanted to continue to learn more. We ended up inviting both of them to church this past Sunday but they didn't attend... We hope that we can still be able to work with them, along with a couple others that we have met either by street contact or door to door knocking. I am learning how difficult it is to find investigators in this way and also understanding how non-effective it is, compared with working through the members. That is why starting a Group is also difficult, we don't have too many members and the members that attend don't know too many of the Hispanics that live in this area. We are continuing to chip away and have faith nonetheless.
One of the things that I've enjoyed learning about was actually a talk that was given in this month's issue of the Ensign- "Becoming Perfect in Christ." This talk actually helped strengthened my testimony by reminding me of the importance of understanding that perfection doesn't happen immediately. Sometimes I want so bad to know the right answers right away, to understand a new language, to strive to have perfection- for me, that is typically how my mind works, to have that desire to immediately know right away. As I've mentioned before, this talk was a great reminder for me to realize the importance of building faith to rely on the Atonement of Jesus Christ during difficulty and to have patience during those times. These are concepts that you can never really learn enough of. I am always willing to learn more about the Atonement of Christ- Something that is personal and different for each individual person but centered around the same person, through and only through Jesus Christ.
I know that He lives and loves us.
I'm blessed to know that you all are doing well, along with our friends and family like Devin Hampton and Lauren Dodd- They sound like they are doing well on their missions!
I'm looking forward to the letter Dad, thank you for that. Keep up the hard work everyday! Les quiero mucho!
(I love them very much!)