Monday, February 6, 2017

Week 40

Mommy and All,

"It took me fifteen years to discover I had no talent for writing, but I couldn't give it up because by that time I was too famous." -Robert Benchley

This week we had a little miracle happen. He is 20 yr old Victor Angel Ezequiel Esteban Martinez. And I had the opportunity to baptize him on Friday

Tuesday we went to see if  the Familia Cyntia who I've mention in a few emails before was back from vacation. We knew they left and they told us if they did, they'd most likely leave and come back soon. So we found them our 2nd day here but haven't seen them for 2 weeks. When we passed by their house, a guy named Victor came out an told us they went way north back home to Salta and wont be home till the beginning of March. Cyntia had told us she had a son, but we had never met him because he was never home. She said he was practicing his swimming to join the marines. Cyntia had never talked to missionaries before us, but she mentioned that she thought her son had talked to them one on one a little. We didn't think much of it since Cyntia wasn't there, but we just started talking to him to see what he knew. It turned out that he was best friends with an Elder who was here like 5-6 months ago, but when he left, the missionaries never came by or had contact with him anymore. He also said he had read almost the whole Book of Mormon and that he had gone to church for 2 straight months with these Elders. We were blown away and were wondering how the heck he got lost in the shuffle. He ended up telling us that the only reason he was there was because he was watching the house for his mom and that he was leaving for Buenos Aires on Saturday to join the Marines and wouldn't be back for 4 years. When he told us that we both just thought oh okay have a good time see ya. Of course he is leaving right when we meet him. But Wednesday morning, the thought crossed our minds that we could actually baptize him if he knows as much as he says he does. So we went and gave him a pre-baptismal interview and he knew everything!! So we called Presidente Salerno and told him his situation and that it was kind of now or never and who knows if after 4 years he will see missionaries again and Presidente Salerno was in the Marines so he gave us permission to baptize him Friday. Victor was pretty nervous but also was excited he could do it. We asked him why they didn't baptize him 6 months ago and he told us they said he wasn't ready. We definitely thought he was ready now. 

So after he passed the baptismal interview Thursday, I got a call saying he wanted me to be the one to baptize him. I was way pumped and just shocked that in 4 days we had already become life long friends. 

Since the church is a literal house, there isn't a baptismal faunt. Its a make shift one you put together like putting together a pool in the backyard haha. Also when we were filling it up, the church ran out of water. So the water came up to about my shins and it was really lucky that he is a head shorter than I am. The first time I baptized him, I had to kind of slam him down all the way on his back, and that still didn't get him all the way in The 2nd time they told him to sit on his butt and for me to get on my knees or we would be there all night haha so that was easier. It was awesome. I asked how he felt after and he looked at me and said "Peaceful, handsome, and clean." I started to laugh haha he is a great guy. He told me after that he knew 100% that it is true. The military is letting him take 2 books and he told us one of those will be the Book of Mormon. He said its also mandatory for them to attend one hour of a church service every Sunday. We looked it up and there is a church 7 min from his base. He told us that his best friend who is a girl and in the military with him just happens to be a Mormon so that works out perfect and they will go together. The last thing he told me was to keep in touch becasue he is going to California in 2018 to train at a base out there and wants to meet up for a sec when he comes haha so that's awesome. He gave me a military backpack to remember him. 

Much Love,

Elder Christensen

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