Hehe, President Kretly told us in our Zone conference last week about a phone call he got: "Hello, President Kretly, Elder Neil Anderson would like to speak to you." President, "Um, ok, if he wants to, yeah..." pause, "Hello, Paulo, this is Neil." Yup, my Pres. had a phone interview with Elder Anderson. He asked about how we are baptizing like we are, so president told him about the marriage thing.
All the Zone conference was about how all of us can become better at what we are doing. The vision is that every month every companionship will be baptizing 4 families or more each months. It all starts with the small and simple things. If you find 1 family a week that will progress to marriage and baptism you will have, in roughly three months, 4 Marriages and baptisms a months. It's the snowball effect. You get it started and then it get's bigger and bigger until it's 4 baptisms a month. Pres. said that there already is 10 companionships who have caught the vision and it is working. Beira is exploding with baptisms and that is why. Maputo has been struggling for a while, but we are going to change that. Elder Coombs and I(together until he goes home next transfer) are finding all sorts of new families to teach. It is a huge challenge and requires you to get off your butt and work your head off, but we are finding many more people to teach.
One big difference I have found, and was a big topic in Zone Conference, was Boldness. You have to be bold. Be bold in spirit, power, and authority. Pres. Kretly tells all the members how we are angels sent to declare great tiding and bring the gospel to all to bless their lives and then turns around and tells us we must act like it. We have a great calling and great authority. We can do more with our priesthood authority and calling as missionaries than we could ever imagine. SO ACT LIKE IT! Believe it! Make sure the people know it!
Tell people your purpose, it isn't a big surprise. The baptismal invite? In the contact sometimes. Stop the man on the road, and don't be afraid to extend the invite if you feel so impressed. In one of the first lessons I taught I committed them to baptism in the first five minutes of sitting down. If you extend the B. Invite quickly and before the restoration A. It get's them thinking. During the lesson they have the goal in mind and they listen and apply it better. B. According to their response, you know what they need. If they say they have already been baptized or have their own church-teach Joseph Smith and the Priesthood authority (restoration Né?) If they accept it and just want to follow Christ and are open to your message, perhaps the restoration isn't the first thing to teach, perhaps the gospel or a commandment will help them get started. Usually it is the restoration that is best whether they accept or not, but when you know their desire and their expectations of your meetings, you don't waste your time or their's teaching something then having to reteach it at a later time.
Your young, timid son is coming out. I really am getting a lot bolder over here. I am more able to bear my testimony with greater power and without shame. I am a missionary of Jesus Christ. I represent him and bring his words to the people. I am to call people to repentance. Yesterday, instead of the Book of Mormon, as we planned, we gave the man a Word of Wisdom challenging him to start changing his life. I love the spirit. I am tired, I am sore, I am working hard and am burning my self in the hot sun, BUT I LOVE IT! This is a marvelous work and a wonder. To feel that spirit work through you, to see it work in and on others, to feel the touch in your mind to say something or to give it to you comp cause he has something that will help, is an experience never to be forgotten. We had new missionaries come in this week (with Sister Smith, weird, a sister) and I walked with them these past days till they got to their actual areas. Let me tell you, the Lord works through the small and weak things to take down the tall and strong of the world. Those Elders (because of their faith and trust in the Lord) despite not knowing Portuguese fluently testified and brought the spirit so strongly. I wish I would've opened my mouth more and just trusted in the Lord when I was were they were. They have power.
So, sorry I took so much time talking about me, but I love the news from home. Nate is driving, Josh leaving, Matt ex-tactic Oh, Dad, Happy Birthday. Fun fact, the 7th of April is Woman's day over here, so, all of Mozambique was partying on your birthday. hehehe
Actually, I am getting better at working out now. So there. Hah!
Elder Wartena a.k.a Captain Africa
P.S. Of course I know what ala mode is! Gosh, I'm offended. kidding. Love ya!