Tuesday we went to the church to watch a world wide missionary broadcast entitled "Teach Repentance and Baptize Converts". It was an extremely good broadcast, Elder Anderson and Bednar presided/ taught on focusing our teaching on Christ and allowing the Spirit (the real teacher) to come and touch that investigators heart. One important teaching that really struck me was that we as missionaries can only bring the teaching and feelings of the spirit unto the heart but not into the heart, the investigator must allow/ invite it in which is just really true. Many missionaries believe that if they have faith and testify harder that it will almost "force" the teaching in (I know that because I have thought and done that before)
But after that and some lunch I was able to go out on a split with my zone leader Elder Ahlstrom in his area, called Ambohimena, and we just had a great time. Elder Ahstroms area is almost on the complete opposite side of Antsirabe from mine and it is just going so well, we literally just went down a row of three houses once and taught a lesson there, just amazing. Elder Ahstrom is a great missionary and I learned a lot from that I would want to apply.
At the same time Elder Sweeten went out with Elder Koplin and they also had a great day but along with that they had the tough job of dropping some amazing people but so is missionary work, they will get another chance at another time when they are ready.
Thursday we all got together again for zone meeting and it was probably one of the best ones that I have ever attended. One of the greatest parts of it was we all discussed the broadcast that we watched on Tuesday and then discussed what that zone could do to change so that the Spirit would not be hindered. It was just so good because you could feel that everyone was taking this seriously not just thinking "aahh this has nothing to do with me" or "this is not important" but I am 100% sure that everyone was comitting with themselves to be better, so cool.
Then that afternoon we taught this new family called Augustan(?) and Emillie. When we first met Augustan on the path a little before we thought that he was either a little drunk or crazy (because no one every comes up to you and starts trying to speak english to you if he is not drunk/ crazy). But we ended up setting a time and it turns out that they are actually from Tamatave which just pumped me up as I had worked there so we were able to talk about Tamatave for a bit which really broke the ice in a sense.
Friday morning all four of us (me, Elder Sweeten, Elders Razakamandimby and Ralaivao) took a trip way out in Manandona so I could do some baptisimal interviews for them, happy to say that they both passed. Then at work we had a lesson with an amazing investigator named George on the Plan of Salvation and he just blew us away! He had read and studied the entire pamplet and new/ had a general idea of the entire lesson, just an amazing and ready person. He really wants to be baptized and it looks like he is doing well on catching his bap date for Feb. 27.
Saturday we had Baptisms!!! Their names are Brona and Erica who live with their grandparents (who by chance are recent converts). They were at every lesson when their grandparents learned, when we reviewed, and when we actually focused on them so by the end they were very knowledgable in the lessons. I ended up baptising Erica and Elder Sweeten baptized Brona, it was an amazing day.
We had an amazing week, it was full of work and the spirit, I just love it here (just a heads up). Have a great week everyone!
(Elder Nelson's Mom here: We received a bunch of pictures and 3 videos via Dropbox today. There are no captions, though I think the baptism pictures are of the baptism he mentions above. The videos are the first and last 2 items. The first was on Christmas Day. The last two were dated today- 2/1/16.)