To quote Elder Carmack from his last testimony, “and a little child shall lead them.” Isaiah 11:6, 2 Nephi 21:6, 2 Nephi 30:12
One of the 12-year-olds got up and bore his mighty testimony and challenged all the youth to bear their testimonies and several of them took the challenge and we had a wonderful testimony meeting with a very strong Spirit. Two investigators bore their testimonies that day, one is 33 and the other is 10. The 10-year-old girl has stayed at church with us when her family comes and then her family has to leave after sacrament because of health problems. We give her a ride home. She is ready to be baptized because she loves our church and she knows it is true. Her 13-year-old sister finally stayed with us at church last time and on the way home she said she didn’t know why she was shy to stay before because she had so much fun. Their family is being baptized the end of March or so. The youth have been so great at welcoming.
The 33-year-old woman bore her testimony also. She had been studying mormon.org for 4-5 months before she called the Mission Office to find a church in our area! She was totally prepared of the Lord. She told the Elders she was ready to be baptized the first time they visited her. She is amazing. She was baptized after church the 20th. She is a miracle to us. Our Mission President asked us to pray every day for those that have been prepared of the Lord. We have been praying every day and the miracle happened. She has 3 children, 12, 8 and 4. Her 12-year-old son has been coming to church with her and joined our Boy Scout program and he wants to be baptized too. We gave them a ride to Wednesday night activities so he could go to Boy Scouts and she could check out Activity Days for her daughters. Her story is a testimony that the Lord hears and answers our prayers and she will be a strong addition to the Ward.
A young family came to church the 20th that are investigating also. Their baby is about 8 months old or so. We think there were 13 investigators in church the 20th counting the toddlers. Our Ward has been so amazing helping with the investigators and giving of their time and talents. “Let us all press on in the work of the Lord”. The young Elder missionaries have certainly taken this challenge to heart. Prior to the baptism the 20th, the young Elders had 14 investigators.
Next Saturday our Ward is having a Missionary Event for the young men and young women of the Ward. They will be divided into companionships and taught many things that will help them on their missions. After the Elders present a lesson on how to teach the Restoration lesson, there will be workshops on washing and ironing clothes, how to tie a tie, how to shine shoes, how to sew on buttons and close a seam, and etc. The youth companionships will be invited to dinner with a family of the Ward and present a missionary lesson to that family. The classrooms in the church will be set up as dining rooms for the family’s “home”. They should have a lot of fun. There will be another baptism following the activity. He is the piano teacher who was invited to church by the Bishops’ 12-year-old daughter. He is awesome.
Our work in the Archives continues to be so enjoyable. We are working on Naturalization Records from the 1800s and early 1900s now. We love to read them. Some of the wording makes you smile. There are some really nice photographs of the people on them. It makes us want to research our own and see if we can find photographs of our ancestors.
We have been tutoring on indexing in a member’s home. That has been fun and very rewarding. Our Stake goal for 2013 is 350,000 names indexed. Last year the Stake almost indexed 250,000 names.
We started teaching our Temple Prep class a few weekends ago. We have a great class. There are two young men who are preparing for their missions and two couples who are being sealed in the Temple on June 7th. Their parents can attend the class also. That has been a great honor to be called to prepare them for the Temple. We are so blessed.
We know this church is true. We know there is a true Prophet on earth today, even Thomas S. Monson. We know the scriptures are true and a guide in our lives. We know Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ live. We know the atonement is real. We know our prayers are heard and answered. We know there are those just waiting to hear the gospel and they will know it is true. We are so grateful for the blessings of the Temple in our lives. We know we have been called of the Lord to the Ohio Cleveland Mission and we love it. We say these things in the name of Jesus Christ, Amen.