Started out the week with a fun family with two young boys five and two. They were both sharp and but the five year old really seemed to really be anxious to respond to our lesson. The family had decorated for Halloween and he was anxious to show us some of the things on display. Wednesday was a historic day in the mission. There were 26 new missionaries who arrived from the MTC. That is a big number when there are only fifty some companionships in the mission.
On Wednesday morning the day started with a mission breakfast. The new missionaries and their trainers had a meeting and then there was a breakfast. Most of the cooking of bacon, eggs, and hash browns was done by the senior men while the office women and senior women missionaries waited tables and mingled with the young elders and sisters. Following breakfast there was a mission conference where some great instruction and mission vision was restated for both the missionaries in the mission and the new elders and sisters. There are some new things on the near horizon for helping the missionaries in their work. One thing will be that there will be instruction on how to use family history as a finding tool and a resource for teaching others about the Gospel. Almost like a new beginning with that many new missionaries. We are excited about the vision given by Pres. Allred and others who did the training.
In the evening we went with the Stake older singles committee and made visits to some of the singles and invited them to a Halloween activity and some firesides later in the month. We had some good visits with several people who do not regularly participate in Church activities.
Thursday morning we went to a funeral of a dear sister we had visited several times. She was about ninety years old and has a large family of nine children plus the grand and great-grand children. The family really filled a large part of the chapel for the services. Hopefully the family members felt some peace from the wonderful thoughts shared by those who took part in the services. She was a wonderful and faithful sister and dedicated mother.
We had a visit with a sister who raises a wonderful garden in spite of some challenging disabilities. She is just determined to keep going. We followed that visit with our lessons to a couple who are returning to activity. We are going through the lesson material just to help refresh their faith and desire to take steps toward the next ordinance of going to the temple.
Saturday was a special day. We spent a large part of the day in baptismal services for eight year old children. One child was one we visited a few times with the sisters who taught her the missionary discussions. Her father was able to be ordained last Sunday as a Priest and was able to baptize her.
Her less active grandfather also attended her baptism. There were five wards who had children baptized. One special time to remember was a young family with five children The second child is a special needs child. This is our report about that experience.
We had such a special experience at a baptism we attended. A beautiful family sang the song "Gethsemane." One of the children was a Down's syndrome child of about 10 years of age. He sang out with all of his heart and knew every word. Even though the words were sung off key and were not completely understood, his spirit made us rejoice at the great love that he has for his Savior. I will cherish this moment and remember that Jesus Christ taught us to look to children as an example when he said: "Except ye be converted, and become as little children, ye shall shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven. Whosoever therefore shall humble himself as this little child, the same is greatest in the kingdom of heaven."
We attended a ward council meeting then attended the tenth ward and stayed for their whole block of meetings; and then went to another ward for their sacrament meeting. We had a very productive correlation meeting this afternoon and then a meal with a couple and their son and his wife.
What a wonderful time to have the opportunity to serve as missionaries! As we look over each week, we see the hand of the Lord in the details. It encourages us to defy the tiredness we feel and go on and find those who need help in coming back to the safety of the Gospel in a wicked and confusing world.