Monday, August 31, 2015

Rojas Family Sealing

This week went by SO fast!

But there was a definite highlight, and that was being at the temple for the Rojas family to be sealed! :) It was SOOO amazing and the absolute most incredible thing I have ever witnessed. They were baptized in this branch about a year ago, and have been taking the temple preparation classes for a long time now, getting ready to be sealed as a family. They have 3 daughters, Evelyn who is 15, Daniela who is 12, and Emilie who is around 9. They are a BEAUTIFUL family and it was beyond words the greatest thing ever to be with them at the temple. We ended up being there from around 3 until around 9, but there was no better place to be. 

I wish that I could put into words the joy and love that filled my soul as I was watching this couple be sealed together for time and all eternity. The way that Hermano Rojas looked at Hermana Rojas as they were at the altar was the most beautiful thing I have ever seen. Then when their 3 daughters entered the room dressed in white, my heart melted. It was such a powerful experience, and there was so much love completely overpowering that room. They were sealed together as a forever family, and tears were streaming down Evelyn's face- Afterwards they all stood in front of the mirrors and the tears could not be withheld. It was SO incredible. 
The Sister of Hermana Rojas, Hermana Zepeda, was right next to Hermana Rojas every step of the way as she went through the temple, and I could just see how happy she was to be able to lead her sister through this sacred building to make these covenants that she herself had made long ago. I could tell that this was a day she had waited for and prayed for a long time! It was amazing. 

I am so grateful- words really arent enough to describe anything I feel- but I am overwhelmingly grateful for the knowledge that families can be forever through the restored gospel of Jesus Christ. Because of Joseph Smith and the things that were restored to him, we have the Priesthood keys to seal on earth and in heaven, which makes these things possible. I know that there is nothing more important and special. 

As far as my week went, that was an overpowering highlight. But lots of other great things happened! 

Hector came to church for the first time :) And then afterwards we went and ate with the Maldonados and the Banuelos, and Hector got along really well with them. 
Hector has been over the baptismal interview questions twice with us, and knows everything there is to know, so we are just trying to help him realize the importance of this step! He is SO ready and definitely prepared, but he wants to wait. 
Hermana Andrus and I both spoke in sacrament meeting as well, so it was good that at least one of our investigators came :) Daniel and Josue were both in Houston, which was a bummer, but they are doing well otherwise! 
We taught Daniel and Armando the Word of Wisdom, and the best moment of that lesson was after we read the page in the pamphlet that explains what the word of wisdom is, we asked if they had any questions or concerns, expecting the usual "but I really like beer"… but then Daniel starts talking about how he doesn't like beer, so that isn't a problem. he doesn't smoke, so no concern there. He hasn't ever gotten into drugs, doesn't like the taste of coffee, and hasn't drinken tea. So we asked if there WAS any problem and he said, "What does this mean, eat meat sparingly? I do eat a lot of meat…" It was such a pleasant surprise! We are super happy with them! Armando was the same, his only concern was that he wasn't going to be able to eat meat anymore, so we clarified that with them. 

Salvador, Blanca and Irene are doing awesome :) The kids all started school, and Blanca started working so things have been crazy at that house, plus they haven't moved out of the Maldonado's house yet, but as far as living the gospel and resisting temptations goes, they are great :) On Sunday they were holding hands and walking into church together and that was SUCH a beautiful sight-- things have really improved with their marriage since they have come here and started making changes in their lives. Its so amazing to see. 

The branch is doing great, everyone keeps asking me if I am leaving soon! They had 5 missionaries in a row that only stayed for 6 weeks, I think everyone is ready to get rid of me;) Just kidding, but I really hope that I don't get moved here in the coming transfer. I LOVE BEAUMONT. 
This place is amazing and changing my life. <3 
I am happy to hear that you all made it home safe! Hope that preparing for school and everything goes smoothly! I love you all SO SO much! 
Love, Hermana Rogers

Sidenote: One thing we have been doing with all the members that I love. And I think would be a great family home evening. We watch a Mormon Message called something along the lines of Book of Mormon: Messages from heaven which is about a challenge extended to a bunch of youth to read in the Book of Mormon for 20 minutes every day and then write about what they learned. We challenge the members to do that, then we continually follow up with them, and the next visit a week later we are having them write their testimonies in Books of Mormon that we hand out! I have also been doing this and its been such a testimony building experience to me-- even though I have read the Book of Mormon who knows how many times, I am still able to learn every time I study prayerfully. Heavenly Father shows me things that apply to my life right now as a missionary, or to the lives of my investigators or certain members, and EVERY TIME i feel edified and uplifted and can't wait to study again. I love the Book of Mormon SO MUCH! I know that it is true and contains messages that WE NEED TO HEAR. :) I hope that you all have been reading in the Book of Mormon, and I extend to you the same commitment we give to members here-- to write down after you read the things that you learned that day, whether from the words themselves or from the Spirit. I know that you will notice a difference in your studies, and in the Spirit that is with you throughout the day. The scriptures are the word of God! :) 
I love you all! Have a great week! :) 

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