Sister Bolliger - Visalia Week 17: Our First Baptism, Golden Self Referrals, Rapp'n at Doors, Navajo Bronze, Miracles, Sister Grr & Sister Fruit Loops
Things are going wonderfully here in Visalia. We--duh duh duhhhhhhh--have a baptism this Saturday! Mr. Chuck W sixty-one years old and the craziest and yet coolest cowboy I have ever met. :) We have been teaching him for the last five weeks and he's entering the precious waters of baptism at 3PM on the 21st. We are so excited! The ward hasn't seen a baptism this entire year yet and this is the first one of my mission (I know..took a while, eh?)! He has his baptismal interview tonight and everything is just coming together for this wonderful event! Chuck has read the Book of Mormon, Doctrine and Covenants, AND the gospel principles manual and it has been such a treat to see him progress in the gospel! The first time he came to church he had his Book of Mormon, two different versions of the Bible, a reading light, three pairs of glasses, his cowboy hat, wranglers, boots and a checkered shirt half-way unbuttoned. :) This last Sunday, he was wearing a white shirt, tie, had a briefcase, wore dark wranglers (haha), and had got a hair cut. It was inspiring! We met with him this morning to go over the different things he had this week in preparation for the baptism and he said that he has been waiting for this day for sixty-one years! He goes to High Priests Quorum and the most wonderful gentleman in the ward is going to baptize him! They help him understand and clarify and it's so exciting to watch him progress in the gospel!
We have another golden investigator: Veronica C! She called the Family History Center here in Visalia and asked to have the missionaries come to her home. :) Nothing like having people refer themselves! Haha. We have since committed her to baptism, had her come to Church, and seen her every day this week! She loves the feeling of the Spirit and has been reading the Book of Mormon like crazy! She calls us her family and feels like we really are her daughters and that we were the ones meant to help her learn and come into the gospel. It is AMAZING! The funny thing is, her son's best friend is Chuck's grandson!! We've been having somewhat of a challenge engaging Chuck's family in his decision, and Veronica told us that she'd make sure Chuck's grandson came to his baptism! Hahahah. Yessss!
I have uncovered one of Sister Lemalu's excellent skills = beatboxing. FOR REAL! So, I think you must know what this means. If we ever get tired of EFY or MoTab, she just sets down a beat and I start flowin as we go to our appointment. Haha. Sometimes, if the heat is getting to us or if someone isn't answering the door, we start a little rap tambien. I feel like I am just magnifying my talents and helping Sister Lemalu with hers! It's just mutual appreciation. :)
I dyed my hair yesterday. It was looking nasty nasty and a weird color gradient from blonde to weird blonde to red. It's now Navajo Bronze! It's darker and much more fun! It kind of glistens in the sun and it was a real bonding experience in the apartment. Haha jk. Aka it felt just like college! We were all wearing jeans because it was preparation day and we were getting ready for a zone activity and I had my newly colored hair. It was much much fun. I was initially going to go with the egyptian plum color, but I think that would have literally colored my hair purple! Hahah. I thought that might be a little bit too extreme...ya know? :)
There are just so many miracles we are seeing in this area. Former investigators are progressing once more and are responding to our desire to love them and serve them and help them! Less actives are excited for our visits and are beginning to build their faith (without them even knowing it....sneaky I know!).
The ward is starting to learn our names. Sister Lemalu and I are asking them as part of our commitments we leave with members to pray for us by name, which in order to do they must first learn our names. Hehe. Which is easier said than done! The little kids are the best at it so far although there's one three year old who calls us Sister Grrrr and Sister Fruit Loops. :)
It's time for transfers again, and this Saturday we get the phone calls that determine our futurreeeeee. I don't want to leave! And I want Sister Lemalu as my companion. Haha. Seriously! I secretly hope that I'm made junior companion again--haha less responsibility--but who knows what the future will bring!
I can't believe that it's been 4.5 months I've been out...and that the summer has already ended for almost all of the kids here in Visalia!
My poor hands can't take any more typing! I love y'all lots! And loved hearing about John's phone call from the airport!!!