Week 27- Investigators From Prison
Hello Dearest Friends and Family!
This week has been great! No food adventures but lots of rain! It has been raining non-stop for about 3 or so weeks! Maybe 4 or 5 out of those days it didn’t rain. Also not just a light rain, but pouring.
CONGRATULATIONS TO MELINDA AND BLAKE!!!! I am so excited to not only come back to two of my friends but they are also now my cousins! I love you Sutten and Melinda!!!!!! You married into the best family! Well, at least I think they are the best family. ^^ Btw, I just remembered a very brief and random thought that I had. I thought it was cool. So my first or second time meeting Melinda I thought she would be an awesome addition to our family. I couldn’t figure out how she could be in our immediate family but then I decided to settle on that she would be an awesome cousin. Well, look at what happened. I forgot I had ever thought that! Then when Sutten and Jake started becoming friends it just seemed like she was already apart of the family. I am excited for our two new cousins! Congratulations again to Maria!!! I will meet your new husband someday! LOVE YOU ALL! I am excited for who else is going to get married! ^^
So, this week we bought a ridiculous hat. We decided to put on our grandpa pants, thrift shop shirts and the hat on. yes, we look ridiculous!
I wanted to highlight Carson’s email to me and the rest of the family. I want other missionaries to read this. Here is Carson’s Email: “So glad you are looking through old records Reagan! Way to go! Miracles are to be had from looking at those old investigator records found in area books…it is an awesome story.
“At the transfer meeting before I went to my last area, Ploiesti, our Mission President gave us a challenge to search the old investigator records in our apartment’s area books. He promised that if we would do so we would find golden investigators and baptize. So we followed his guidance and the first day we got to our area we searched our area book. When I did I came upon a detailed note from a missionary who had since returned home. He spoke about a father and son who he had met through English classes and they took missionary lessons, but the time wasn’t right. He pled with future missionaries so visit this family since they were golden. Well, I decided we had found our man. So our first Sunday in the area we dropped by the home of Valentin Ene and he and his family were home! They invited us in, he was surprised to see us, but happy. He told us how he didn’t believe in God, but was willing to learn, and felt that he should. The last six months I was in Romania I taught Valentin. He grew step by step. I dreamed, prayed, hoped that he would be baptized. I knew he was one of the elect, a true kingdom builder. About two weeks before my mission ended, we all took a bus to another chapel for a District (we didn’t have stakes) conference. Valentin came along and on the way back home in the bus we sat next to one another and chatted the whole time. I was overjoyed and couldn’t believe my ears when he told me he had decided to get baptized. It was a true miracle. My last Sunday in Romania I was able to baptize him. Since then he has been a branch president and district counselor. He has been to the temple a few times. He also has a great job working for the church as the facilities manager for all of Romania and Moldova. Mom and Dad have met him and his wife and two kids. Anne has met Valentin and his family as well. We have such a special relationship. His wife is a devout Orthodox and hasn’t shown interest in the church, and wants her two boys to stay Orthodox. But she is supportive of her husband and their youngest son Radu goes to church with his Dad. The oldest boy is now in college in Denmark.
“So that is a special story to me. So when I read that Sister Orme was looking through old investigator records I got excited and had to give my witness that those efforts pay off!”
Well, this week we met an old investigator from 10 years ago. She has 3 children and wants to meet with us again! We have an appointment for friday. Currently we are teaching 3 old investigators from old records. When we visited this lady it was amazing. We knocked on the door and it was super loud in her house. She tutors kids in math and english. She said she was busy and to come back later and then 2 seconds later she said to come in. We sat and talked with 2/3 kids for about 30 mintues. She was really happy to see us and is excited to meet again. I am sooooo excited for all of these old investigators. I know that if we all do the same and call old investigators we will see miracles.
I think I briefly touched on this in an earlier email. But the Elders have some investigators in prison. One in particular who is absolutely amazing! He bears his testimony of the gospel often and they are powerful testimonies. The Elders were even given permission to baptize him right after he gets out of prison. He doesn’t even have to go to church first! He gets out this friday. I wanted to share with you my journal entry when I was reflecting on this miracle. “I feel like prisoners are some of the lowest of the low peoplle. They are stuck in prison, with not a lot of stuff to do, loads of time, and not a lot of possessions. They have a lot of time to ponder, think, and read. Why not ponder, think, and read the BofM? Yes, there is also a lot of evil in that prison. Many did really bad things but despite the evil they performed they are still children of God. When their hearts start changing , and changing for good, don’t they deserve mercy too? Yes, we are human and we make mistakes, some worse than others, but we all deserve to be given the chance to change. The Elders having a prisoner in prison has changed my perspective a little about prisoners. Despite so much evil, there can be good. It reminds me of the scriptures. So much evil, so much killing, whoredoms, etc. The Lord still forgave them when they remembered Him and repented. The Lord has perfect understanding of one’s heart. When we have a meek and lowly heart and want to change, we will receive what we deserve. Which is love, kindness, understanding, and forgiveness. We are not perfect but the Lord is. How great is the Lord’s plan?! He knows what we need to learn and how we can grow. I hope that everyone feels like they deserve His love. Because we ALL do. Love him and love others. You can’t receive unless you give first. I hope we all can show our love for others like the Lord does.”
The Lord’s work is hastening!
Also, remember that less active family I mentioned earlier? If not, it is okay. President and Sister Gilbert, this is your favorite family in Miryang. But I wanted to share some amazing news. The daughter, whom we have been meeting, is finally coming to church!!!!! Her mom is also becoming more active. She wants to go to BYU so she is trying hard to make sure she can get in by doing everything. She is getting more involved. Her initial reason for coming may not be amazing but she is starting to realize more and more that it is important to stay active. They want to get patriarchal blessings too! We talked to the mom and daughter and they wanted them the next day! We are helping them and they have met with the Branch president. Hopefully, the father will be getting one too. The son is in Utah right now, staying with an LDS family. Which is amazing! I am very happy for their progress. It is slow but they are getting there. We just need to get the dad to come back to church as well. The elders still see him every week.
I LOVE BEING A MISSIONARY! It is the greatest! LOVE YOU ALL TONS!!!!!!!!
Love Sister Orme