First up...William! We have been working with him for a few months now. He has been living here in Germany for about 13 years. In December we were at a point with him where we needed a make-or-break moment....so we gave quite the intense lesson to him. William responded so well to it, and really allowed it to boost him forward. He has been making so much progress the last few weeks. He has come to church 3 weeks in a row and even bought himself a new snazzy suit to fit in with everyone else :). I cant wait to see him be baptized before I leave Rostock in February!!
Justice....So I have never talked about Justice because he just came out of no where. We teach some of Justice's roommates. He would sometimes come in the room but he was never really interested. I had the feeling that we needed to show the movie, The Testaments. This is something that I have never done on my mission prior, but felt like it really needed to happen for some reason. Well, Justice was down to watch a movie and it completely hit him sooo hard. The movie ended and I asked if anyone had questions and Justice said, "What do I need to do to get baptized. I felt when I was watching that movie that I need to. Can you help with that?" Um, yes we can Justice!! So we told him the first thing he could do is come to church, and he did! It was so awesome to see him and his roommates come for the first time!
Anthony- Anthony is Justice's roommate. We have seen a lot of progress out of him as well. He is always calling us and seeing if we can meet with them. He is reading so much every day it's crazy! He is loving everything we teach him and really has been the driving force behind all of his roommates making progress such as coming to church.
Anna and Degol- School finally started this week so we cant wait to finally meet with them after a very long winter break! We have had contact with both of them and should hopefully squeeze some appointments in this week!!
Bodo- we have found with Bodo what we like to call in mission talk, his "iceberg". This is the little thing that holds them back from making progress or being baptized; and is often times not easily detected. He has a really hard time thinking he can be forgiving. The idea of Repentance is a hard one for him. He still wants to be baptized but keeps pushing it back out of fear he wont be ready. So this past week we worked really hard on a big repentance lesson for him. It went so well!! He said that he sees everything in a very different light and he said that he feels like a weight has been lifted off of him! We cant wait for our appointment on Wednesday to hear more and to figure out a suitable date for his baptism. He really wants to get baptized in the ocean, so it might be a early summer baptism :). He continues to come to church weekly.
Mario- He is one of the investigators that has been around for 6 years! We have seen a lot of great things come from him the last few weeks though. He continues to come to church, institute, and FHE every since week. He and Bodo are really good friends. Mario is also ready for baptism and said that when Bodo decides, he will be baptized with him on the same day!
Owoe- Owoe is my french lady! Whoooo! Oh how I love it. She is about 60 and is from Africa. Speaks no English, French and a little German. Communication is sometimes a struggle, but we have really been able to make due. It has allowed me to practice up on some of my French which I love and so does she. There arent too many people she knows that speak french, so she is patient with my memory loss of my school french knowledge. It is a neat story with how we started teaching her actually. We had our first appointment and at the end we asked if we could come back. She declined, but agreed to letting us say a closing prayer with her. After the prayer, she looked up and asked, "So when are you coming back??" The power of prayer is real :)! haha. She is also attending church, and we couldn't be happier for her. She moves slow, but there is nothing wrong with that.
Also another update on my last city of Dresden: Chang and Melanie have now been baptized! So amazing!! I remember each of their first lessons and to think of where they are now is just amazing! I was planning on returning to Dresden for Melanie's that was just yesterday, but last minute my permission was retracted :,(. However, I was so excited for her to finally be able to make this step in her life! I know we will remain friends for years!
This woman literally gave everything she had. She had enough faith in God that she knew the more she gave to him, the more blessings she would receive. She had enough faith, that even with a hungry family, she still came and gave of her wages. She was a window, with the entire weight of her family riding on her shoulders alone. She was humble enough to know that she could not provide for them all by herself, as well as she could with the help of God. Sure to many, her two mites would not have seem significant enough to bring blessings. However, it was EVERYTHING she had. Are we willing to do that in our lives? Truly have enough faith in the Lord, to give him EVERYTHING? Only by aligning our wills with God’s, can we find full happiness. Anything less results in a lesser portion (see Alma 12:10–11). The Lord will work with us even if, at first, we “can no more than desire” but are willing to “give place for a portion of [His] words” (Alma 32:27). But we must desire and provide it. I hope that this week we can all focus on giving more to the God who granted us this very life.
Thanks again for all the love and support! I hope this week goes great for all of you, miss you tons!! See you in just over 6 months!
Kirche Jesu Christi
Sister Jessica Linford
Friedrich Str. 14