Tuesday, February 17, 2015

One of the Happiest and Saddest Weeks

I don't even know where to start-- I guess with the highlight!!!!!!! 

I'll go through our week with him. Monday we invited him to be baptized on Sunday and he said "Claro que si" (Of course I will). He said he was decided-- he is strong right now and doing well and wants to make this decision that he didnt make before. Here are a couple quotes from him that day. 
"The day before you came I was talking to my mom and I knew I needed to change. My mom has always taken care of me, even when I wasn't behaving well. But now, I am going to be baptized and then I will take care of her"
"My stepdad always comes and drinks here, and it tempts me, but I want to get to that point where instead of him tempting ME to drink, I want to be tempting him to come to know God."

We saw him every day this last week and made sure he knew everything he needed to know. He has come so far and made so many changes in his life already, and he has SUCH a strong desire to be good and do everything he needs to. He tells us, I know it is hard, and it will be hard, but in my prayers I ask for my faith to be strong and I feel so good afterwards". Ah MARCO IS SO COOL! Haha he told me I am always either laughing or crying... then told Williams she was a lot more serious and that Stiles was just chill... Also!! He told us the whole story about his accident in December. I don't know if I wrote about this last week, but December 13, he was in a car accident. He was driving drunk with a friend in the car, the friend told him to slow down but he didnt listen, then he hit someone, got thrown out the window across the freeway, broke his leg, got cut up by the glass window, then was in a coma for like 3 days. HOW IS HE STILL ALIVE? Because God knew he had a purpose to fulfill. Marco knows this too-- It's only been like 2 months since his accident and he is walking (sometimes with a crutch because it still hurts a lot) but he is a living MIRACLE. He says, "I know God has a plan for me. He will help me be ready for Sunday- baptism is a new birth and that's what I want. I want to be a new person and have a new perspective on life". He WANTED to be baptized and had so much faith that everything would go well and work out! He still has his struggles, but knows that God will give him the strength and help him. Paco came to lessons with us and shared his conversion story and listening to him talk about it made me feel so much joy. Paco has come such a long way and is now helping us to bring other people to Christ. :) I love this!!! 
MARCO ASKED PACO TO BAPTIZE HIM!!!!! Initially Paco was sooo nervous but then he agreed to it and did such a good job! :) It made me so happy! 

Okay so Marco's baptism!! We had been telling the ward all week long about Marco and the miracle of finding him, so everyone was so excited for his baptism! In church, he was super involved in the classes, people kept congratulating him, etc. Then his mom came to his baptism and she isn't a member but had been taught as well before. We asked her before his baptism if we would be able to come over and teach her and she said, "well I dont know, I go to the catholic church on Sundays"... but then she cried through the whole baptismal service and told Marco afterwards that she wants to come to church with him next Sunday!! :):) So Paco baptized him, and when he came out of the water he had the HUGEST smile on his face, looked at all of us and said, "Yeehaw!!" and like slapped the water-- and the ward clapped a couple times haha it was so funny. But then while he was still standing there, he looked at us and said, "Thank you everyone for helping me change and be where I am now. I'm clean! I'm changed! I will see you all at church!!" :) HE WAS SO HAPPY!!! :):) It just made me SO happy too-- he has really experienced a huge change in his life. 
He sent a picture of him at his baptism to like all of his family in Honduras and he said some of them asked him why, and he said "because I want to change and be an example" They are supportive of him and his decisions and I know he will have a huge impact on those around him. :) Also while we were still at his baptismal service, someone (I think maybe in the stake presidency) came up and told us that they heard Marco's story from President and Sister Drake and wanted to have Marco share his testimony in a High Council meeting in a couple weeks! Crazy! 
Marco, when he heard I was leaving, came up to me and said, I want to thank you for helping me change my life- when you talked to me it made me want to be better. THIS IS WHY I AM A MISSIONARY! I need to go find the Marco's that the Lord has prepared for me to teach and serve and help come to know the hope and power of the Atonement! The gospel really does CHANGE PEOPLE'S LIVES! 

I don't even know how much sense I am making but basically this week was the craziest!!! 

Aside from all that excitement though, it was also really hard. I had to say goodbye to West Lake Houston ward and that was the hardest thing. :( It really does feel a little bit like my heart got torn apart... 
Hugo barely came back!!! he got here on Sunday, but we didn't get home until around 9, so we went over for a tiny bit to say hi, then the next day we spent a little while at the Serranos with Eva, Gilberto, Hermana Serrano, Hugo and Tito (as well as Valeria and Tolon the kiddos)... Leaving there felt like leaving home again. I love them like family. Eva and Gilberto have changed my life and I love them so much, Hermana Serrano has treated me like one of her own, and Hugo has made such a huge impact on my life as well. Tito we have been working with so much lately and I want to see them all keep progressing and growing in the gospel. It broke my heart leaving... saying bye to Hugo AGAIN was terrible!! 
There are so many families like the Serranos that have taken us in and treated us like their own family. Obispo Morales has opened his heart to us so much and absolutely made a huge impact on me. I am going to miss him so much! And then there is the Gutierrez family- David and Yessika, and then Paco and his mom-- I can't even explain how much I love them. AH there are so many families that have changed me. I am going to miss West Lake Houston SO MUCH!!!!!! :(((
Monday was such a busy day, and it made my heart hurt all day long. I was so sad and just had this pit in my stomach... Monday night we did a noche de hogar at paco's with Marco and it was so much fun, and then I had to say bye to Marco and that was SO SAD. He's amazing. and then transfers happened. Ah okay. 

SOOOOO my new area is....... University of Houston!!!!! "U of H" with Hermana Fanoimana Lessary (I probably spelt that wrong- I will learn)... haha
We are in Broadway-- Our area is a biking area (wish me luck) and we are 5 minutes away from downtown Houston! So far all I know about the area is that....um... not much! They havent had a baptism since November but we are about to turn that around. This is Hermana FL's last transfer on the mission (which means I am "killing her") and will probably be staying in this area for a while-- at least 12 weeks! The ward has 8 missionaries and GUESS WHO IS ONE OF THEM?! Elder Wilder!!!! He is in my district!!! I am happy about that- it will be so much fun to see him around! :) :) Also we live in a house! Its TINY! haha smaller than my last apartment- i have a lot of stuff I need to send home for sure. 
The address is 
5105 Claremont
Houston, TX
(not 10,000% positive about that but I think so- haha) 
Oh and my comps name is spelt Fonoimoana Lessary haha I was a little off. 
I think we will have a great transfer. 
Um trying to figure out what else you want to know haha ;) OH PEREZ IS TRAINING AGAIN! She got switched English right after she left being with me and now she is having another "baby" so I have a sister in the mission!! :) Cute huh? Seeing her at transfers was way cool. I miss her like crazy! 

Okay I think thats about all I have for this week. I'll let you know how week 1 in U of H goes!!! 
Hope everything is going well for you!! Good luck with basketball and school and...work and everything else you guys are doing! I love you all so much! 
Have a great week! 
"Miracles happen. If you don't believe in them or if you can't see them, all you have to do is open your eyes" -Obispo Morales. 

I love yall! Have a great week! 
Hermana Rogers

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