Hello out there!
We are going back to the evil apartment tomorrow. President had the APs stay in it and they came out alive with no bites! There is hope. :) We have enjoyed staying at the Value Place..I recommend it. lol. I have enjoyed riding passenger..I get to write in the area book, make numerous phone calls and listen to the sweet new cds we got at the Nauvoo bookstore! Mercy River is one of my favorites now. Kind of girly, but it brings the Spirit. We got to meet the new Hermana! She is so sweet and excited to work. She will do well with Hermana McGuire training her in Hampton. She is my grand daughter in the mission, I am growing "old". I cant believe I only have two transfers left. Yikes. Don't worry, we are working hard. We love this area and the people! This week went pretty well. The branch is growing and becoming stronger. While we have been working with the members, I feel that our branch has more of a desire to serve others. I am really excited about it. We finally had a correlation meeting yesterday and our branch president was there, he had lots of good tips. :) We also have members ready to help us this week with member presents, they enjoy coming out with us.
Israel's baptismal date has been moved to the 25th of September because of word of wisdom issues. We are seeing him every day this week, to teach him as well as motivate him to not smoke. It is hard for him because his family does it, so he is constantly tempted. He has the desire to change and be baptized so I have faith that he wont smoke again! His last one was on Tuesday..so he can stay strong and drop it completely. If we need to we will do the stop smoking workshop we did with Pedro.
Jose Rubio wants to get baptized sometime in October. He is in MExico right now, visiting his family. His wife is not supportive of the church, so that is bringing Jose down. He has received an answer that the church is true, and can notice that the Spirit has been more in his life...just doesnt want a divorce. He has faith that if he does what God wants him to do, that path will bring him the most happiness. He is going to express his beliefs to his wife and let her decide what she wants to do. We read 1 Cor 7 with him about divorce. We arent swaying him one way or the other, just encouraging him to pray and do what Heavenly Father prompts him to do. He has progressed alot!
Gladis and Eder...this family is wonderful! We are trying to get them excited about marriage!!! They are praying about the 23rd of October. Tonight we are going to have a family home evening and teach the first, as well as focus on families. Their anxiety about whether their marriage will end in divorce, can be cured if their realize the impact the Gospel will make on their family! Yes, they will have trials with and without the Gospel, but with the Gospel they will receive strength through Christ and their testimonies. We have a case study to share with them from a family that found strength through the covenants they had made in the Temple. We are seeing the family together hopefully 3 times this week and Gladis by herself twice.
Hermano Serrano is holding strong with the word of wisdom! He came to church as well. We enjoy teaching him because he really wants to change. His girlfriend (LA) listens in on the lessons and has lots of questions. We are happy to teach her as well.
As far as our recent converts and less-actives...Hector has forgiven those that offended him. He also has hometeachers now. He seemed happy at church on Sunday. Pedro wasnt at church, we are not sure why. I know his hometeachers stopped by his house on Sunday. We will see him this week as well. We thanked the leaders of the branch for their help with the recent converts. We are trying to emphasize how important their role is as members to help fellowship them. We are trying to pass them on to the members completely. Gloria Hernandez (LA) has decided to move and will be going to an english branch. We are supportive of her desire to go to church, but we feel she will return to the branch because its better to hear the gospel in your native language.
Other news for the week, we met Elder Finnerty's parents! haha He served in the Des Moines branch and came by to visit because he finished his mission. That was fun! Elder Finito! We also did service with Habitat for the Humanity. We built houses, and I used a power tool. Crazy huh! It was really exciting actually. I plan on getting into construction. Not really. But I wouldnt mind using power tools on a regular basis. Last week we helped with Heartland, an organization that puts food packets together and takes them to Africa to feed the starving families. I love service! Once I am hope between church, playing volleyball, school, family and friends...I want to do service and help out the community. :) Eventually do peacecorps. Anyways love you all and will talk to you next week. Share the Gospel with atleast one person this week- your beliefs whatever they might be. Spread the love and the hugs. The branch misses your piano skills, Hermana Reese and your sonrisa. muah!