As you know, the first week in Tsito was a bit rough. Good news for ya - this week was much better! I feel great about working here.
Our priorities are less-active families and recent converts. They are typically the ones who have lots of family and friends that are non-members. We started this search by going through the Branch Directory and calling all names we didn't recognize. So far, we've received a lot of referrals. One of those referrals already has a baptismal date for the end of the month! It's going to take some time to build the area again, but we're like ten times busier than we were last week. Elder Horne is a great guy and we're having a lot of fun working together.
We also found a few investigators through our "bible class" we're holding. Some of them have attended and enjoyed it. Hopefully that will continue to be an avenue to receive more interested souls. I really love teaching Seminary and the youth, so I want to do the best job I can to give them the best learning experience. Many of them will never get the chance to study the gospel as deep as we study it for the rest of their lives. One young woman spoke up one day asking for more scripture mastery. We made a cool chart and hung it up for the youth to "check-off" their scriptures when they memorize it. We are planning for a Seminary Christmas party, where the youth can bring their non-member friends. I just love the youth!
One experience occurred the other day that I'd like to share:
We were contacting a referral from a old lady member one afternoon. This man was her cousin and we had been told he had a copy of the Book of Mormon. As we sat down with him and tried to get to know him better, he questioned us why we were visiting him (and older man), and not young adults who commit more sins, inferring that he is less of a sinner. We answered that our message can bless all people of all ages. Throughout the visit, he still didn't seem to understand why we were taking time to visit him. Ironically, he then started to preach to us about humility and repentance, and how needed those characteristics are to become like our Father in Heaven. It was almost humorous how blind this old man was to his own pride. At the same time, it was sad because we understood what he chose not to, and offered him what he didn't want to accept.
I wondered how often that happens to me in my own life. My own blindness keeps me from seeing the truth.
Hope you all have a wonderful week (which won't be too hard).
Love Elder Nissinen