Not too much out of the ordinary this week. Our branch mission leader moved back to Puerto Rico this past week, so we all said goodbye to him, and we are now branch mission leader-less. This member moved here last May, so I was here for basically the same amount of time as he was. Crazy...
We had a great lesson with Elian's mom this past week. She came into town for just a few days to visit, so we met up to talk with her about the baptism that's coming up. We gave her a Book of Mormon about 2 months ago, and she was on page 350 (!) when we met with her! I have never had anyone read so much of the Book of Mormon, and understand it too! But yeah, we answered some of the questions she had about the church, including questions about baptisms for the dead. It was a powerful lesson, and she was speechless when we read to her about baptisms for the dead in the bible and testified of the truthfulness of that doctrine. I have no doubt that she will be baptized when she comes here to stay. She also said that she believed that God had taken them out of New Jersey and placed them here in Ohio to save Elian spiritually. I believe that. He is one of those elect individuals that it talks about in D&C who only didn't have the truth because he didn't know where to find it. I know that Heavenly Father took him out of a bad situation and placed him here so that he could hear and accept the gospel.
In our lessons with Elian this week, we had him teach us about the restoration and the plan of salvation. In the second lesson he taught, he said to the "investigator", "We're not here to pressure you or anything, but you need to be baptized." =) He's already an awesome teacher, and he's only 15! He's going to be an amazing missionary!
I went back to my old area (the one I spent a year in) for an exchange last week. It was weird. I imagine it's probably how it will feel when I come home. Everything was really familiar, but it was different as well. It was all the same people and places, but they had changed, just like I have changed in the few months since I left. But it was lots of fun working with Elder Bradford up there; it brought back lots of memories.
Now for a mini-list of random Dayton-only events:
· Some guy tried to convince me that C++ is a sport...
· As we were riding on the bus, the bus driver saw someone having a BBQ in their front yard, so he pulled the bus over to the side of the road, got out, bought a hot dog, talked to the guy for a few minutes, then got back on the bus and started driving like nothing happened...
· I have successfully made friends with the 4-year old son of a member family. I taught him how to make a whistling noise with a piece of grass.
· I helped an Uruguayan man put up a portable garage in his back yard.
· We arrived at the downtown bus stop to hear a man singing in a foreign language from an old and tattered bible. Upon talking to him, we learned that he was singing a special psalm in Latin. He said that he is one of 1,000 people in the U.S. that fluently speaks Latin. His name is Kenneth.
· Our zone leaders' phone got stolen, so I took part in a secret mission to recover the phone, which ended with the phone being traded back for a power bar.
· As we finished a lesson with a less active around 9:00, a random guy from Tegucigalpa Honduras wearing a suit approached us out of the dark and began relating to us his conversion story to Christianity. Very rarely to people approach us to talk about religion, especially when it's dark out and the person doing the approaching is a suit-wearing Honduranian...
One last story that wasn't random enough to be included in the random-list. As you may remember, near the beginning of this year I began to cut my own hair. A certain family in the branch always took pleasure in lightly critiquing my abilities, and they have never failed to comment each of the 4 or 5 times I have attempted to cut my own hair. Well, the mom of the family told me that this past week it was time for her 13 year-old son to get a haircut, so she asked him how he would like it cut. His response was: "Cut it like Elder Foote cuts his hair."! So I can now honestly say that my hair-cutting skills have reached a point that I am causing envy here in the branch... I might have to tone it down just a bit... =)
And that is all! Hope all goes well out there in the wilderness! Good luck with school!