April 22, 2013
The baptism went really well this week. It was a very spiritual experience. We had planned it on Friday at 2 because that was the only time his parents could come to it. We knew there wasn't going to be a whole lot of people who could make it because of work or other arrangements, but we actually had a decent number show up. What was really cool was the support of the missionaries in our zone who came to it. Besides all of that though the baptism went very well. It was really spiritual for me because it was the first baptism I have been a part of on my mission, besides being a part of the actual process. Sebastian kept talking about how good he felt and how excited he was. Last Monday the family that he had lived with while he was in Utah called us and told us that they would like to be a part of the baptism and so they wrote the two talks for his baptism. Then Elder Davies and I translated them into German and had one of the members read them. He was then confirmed on Sunday by Elder Davies. I know he is going to be a great influence on a lot of people's lives. I am really happy to see the happiness that has come into his life because of his desire to follow Christ.
On Saturday this week we will have the baptism for Lena Weichelt. We are so happy for her and her family; her and her daughters will now all be members and be able to go to the temple together. We helped her and the member who is baptizing her get their baptismal clothes yesterday and she started to tear up a little bit. You can tell how much this means to her. She asked if I could confirm the Holy Ghost upon her the Sunday after which will be a great opportunity.
As for the rest of the work things are going very well. We have been having difficulties trying to get back in contact with Luis, but we are sure we will be able to find him here soon. We found a new investigator this week. He was someone we actually found when Elder Davies and I were walking down the street a couple weeks ago and we randomly buzzed a doorbell. We hadn't really planned on dooring the building, but then the buzzer let us in. The lady, whose apartment we had door belled, didnt have any interest but we decided to door the rest of the house since we were all ready in. We met this guy named Kai who seemed very casual at first and we didn't think he had a whole lot of interes,t but he told us he would like to meet with us and to come by in two weeks. The time he had us come by again was when we were having the baptismal interview for Sebastian. So we did splits with the international Elders. I went with Elder Armstrong to the interview, since he is our district leader and does the interviews of our investigators, and Elder Davies and Elder Tauche went to meet with Kai. I wasn't there, but they said that he was very open and spiritual and really had a lot of interest in the Book of Mormon. We are meeting with him on Thursday and we are hoping to commit him to baptism. He seems like someone who would be a very strong and helpful member.
We also had interviews with President Miles this week. He came to Stuttgart and I got to be the first one he interviewed that day again. It was probably the first interview I have had where none of the interview was focused on me, rather he just talked completely about our zone. As always though it was very good and edifying.
Another cool experience we had this week is the Vocalis Chamber Choir came to Stuttgart this weekend. This choir is essentially a German Young Adult MoTab. This is possibly their last year, so they are doing a tour through Germany to a few of the stakes. Stuttgart happened to be one of the lucky stakes, but I guess it also helps when the bishop of our ward brother is in the choir and has connections. Anyways, our ward has been planning this for awhile and so they came on Saturday and for about an hour they got permission to sing in the city center. While they were singing the sisters, the international elders, Davies and I and a few of the ward members came and helped pass out flyers to their concert for the night in the Stake House. Later in the day some of the choir members went on splits with us missionaries to go hand out more flyers to people and houses around the neighborhood of our church. I had the opportunity to work with a guy named Aaron Jentzsch, who is cousins with Gregor Jentzsch, who was in my Rosenheim Ward and one of my favorite members. He had served in Stuttgart five years ago on his mission, so he was happy to be back and working in the city. The concert was very good. It was a great performance and they did a number of very good pieces. Germans love listening to the Mormon Tabernacle Choir, but it's a big treat for them when they get to listen to a Mormon Chamber Choir that sings in German. The next Sunday they came to our ward and they were part of the sacrament meeting program. They would sing a couple of songs with short talks from some of the choir members in between. It was a great program for Sebastian's confirmation day.
It was overall a very good week. In addition to the cool experiences with the work, I also made Schnitzel for the first time and it turned out so good. I made them for our apartment in celebration of Sebastian's baptism. I also have a new camera like you suggested mom, where the cord and everything works. I hope all is well back home. Love you lots.
Gott sei mit euch bis aufs Wiedersehen