We are turning over missionaries faster than I can keep up with them. It's really not any faster than usual, I just got a little behind (imagine that:). We received 12 new missionaries. One of our new fellow servants is from mexico. He has been a member a little over a year. He speaks no English, but he speaks the language of love and faith. We have felt his humility and strength of spirit. He was brought to the mission by Brother and Sister Santa Cruz. Their son, three days earlier, had fallen and was in the hospital with a broken back. They had been at the hospital for three days straight. They had committed to bring Elder Guerra to the mission field, so they left their family and brought him, knowing that the sacrifice would be paid back ten fold. We were strengthened by their faith and dedication
Saturday, August 8, 2009
This group of missionaries had a full year with us. We had a wonderful time together as they prepared to go home reminiscing the events of the past year past year. The Hurricane, Elder KuKuchi's visit, learning to get 80 contacts a week, reinstating member meals, reflections of Christ, Coming to understand our Purpose better and numerous miracles we had experienced together. It is always a treat to have families come share this time with us. The Jamsa family, the Newton family, and the Neal family all joined us. Our last dinner together was eventful in that when we got home from the temple to have a dinner of Lasagna for 30, the electricity had gone off which meant the oven didn't go on. One of the great families in our ward who still had electricity was kind enough to load up 5 lasagnas and take them to their house to cook. We had our testimony meeting first by candle light which turned out to be wonderful. We felt like pioneers. Here are our faith filled missionaries that served with their heart might mind and strength.
Posted by PRESIDENT AND SISTER WOODS at 7:42 PM
Monday, August 3, 2009
One of our most exciting miracles occurred Yesterday when President got a call that President Burkhart had just received the letter from the first presidency granting permission to our request to make a Branch of he church in Amite Louisiana. Here's the story. About 7 months ago President Woods was having impressions that we ought to send missionaries back into Amite. It is about half way between Baton Rouge and the Miss border. There hadn't been missionaries there for 5 or 6 years. There was one or two member families that lived there and and a few inactive ones in the surrounding areas. When he mentioned it to President Burkhart he said wow, " I have been having the same impressions." They got busy and asked Brother Burgess if they could meet in his house. He graciously agreed. They asked a few members from a neighboring branch if they would be willing to attend there until they could get enough new and reactivated members to make a group. President put two missionaries there for starters. they soon became so busy that we put two more. The miracles started happening. They were prayerful and soon the Lord lead them to the right doors of inactive members that had been praying for help and to doors of people that the Lord had prepared that were seeking the truth. One of the great blessings was finding a family with ten children. The parents had been together for 11 years but had never been married. President went with the missionaries and shared with them the blessings of the temple and invited them to prepare to take their family to the temple. They said "we haven't even been baptized yet" President said,"exactly my point" We need to get you married and baptized so you can start claiming the blessing of the restored gospel of Jesus Christ for your family. They moved forward in faith and got married, were taught , and changed their lives so they could be baptized. They are a bright spot of this gathering of saints. In six months the little group of 15 has grown to 40 -50 consistently every week. We are now a branch and growing. When we move forward in faith and work hard the Lord matches our effort ten fold. Here are the faithful saints involved in the miracle. We had the blessing of meeting with them and sharing our testimony. It was pioneer weekend. I'd say we were with some great pioneers.President Burkhart (right) Denham Springs Stake & Terry Gomez (high council)
Elder Harrison (opened the area),Regina and Kenny(parents of 10) Brother Burgess (provided home)
The Kenny & Regina family with Elders Harrison, Falco, Heyrend, and Loosle
93 year old mother(right) and her daughter aren't they adorable
President Woods and Brent who was seeking the truth and a place to belong Baptismal date next week.
Posted by PRESIDENT AND SISTER WOODS at 12:02 AM
Sunday, August 2, 2009
We welcomed a new sister from Temple Square, Sister Santos. She is from Brazil and will be with us for 6 months. She has been a member for two years, and her memory of gratitude for the faithful missionaries that knocked on her family's door gives her great enthusiasm for this work. She has a burning testimony of the Savior and how her life has changed with her new understanding of the Atonement. She and her companion Sister Pederson have had three baptisms in the short time she has been here.
We received a very lively group of missionaries on June 23. Lively is a good thing. You could tell instantly that they were a unified group when president and I were waiting at the bottom of the escalator for them. We could tell that everyone from that flight had pretty much come down and still no missionaries. We asked the last lady if she had seen a group of missionaries up at the top. She said,"oh yes they are taking pictures around the fountain." We waited another few minutes thinking they would be right down. A security guard came down and we asked them if they were up there. "you mean the ones taking pictures?" We finely sent the assistants up to get them. They were so enthusiastic and bright even though they had been up since 2:00 am. They have been here six weeks and that enthusiasm has translated into love and hard work. They are truly a wonderful group of missionaries and continue to infuse the mission with their spirit and energy
Elder GrinerElder Laporte (France)
Posted by PRESIDENT AND SISTER WOODS at 10:47 PM