Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Elder Christensen: Letter 1/7/13 New Year, New Date

So not much going on this week. Still tons of people out of town for the holiday, but we did however set up a date for Amanda's Baptism and I will be baptizing her on the 19th of January :) I've been learning the Baptismal prayer this week in Sign Language for her. It's pretty intense!! I hope I don't mess it up or I'll be there for a while... also typed up Grandma's miracle and this Sunday she got up and bore her testimony and she is walking by herself and has been healing more and more every day. It's so cool to see!!! Hope to hear from you all soon and hope you enjoy this story!

Cathryn’s Christmas Miracle
BY: Elder Jeffrey Christensen

The story of this miracle is that we had begun teaching Cathryn or Grandma as we call her because she old enough to be almost anyone’s grandma. So when I had first got to Springfield we started teaching, and she was very receptive to our message, but said I don’t need to be baptized again. She was a headstrong Methodist, and didn’t feel she needed to become a member of our church and be baptized again.
Grandma had be going to church with her granddaughter, sister Elliot and she teaches the 7 year old class and grandma was also very involved in these lessons.  She came to church this week and last week and said "there is just such a warm spirit here at your church."  That's music to every missionary’s ears. Later that night though Cathryn fell and hit her head pretty good! The result of Grandma’s fall was she had tons of internal bleeding and possible brain damage. We both knew this was Satan trying to make sure she was able to continue learning more about us and our message. The doctor said at her age recovery is very unlikely and may take months... After the blessing we knew that would not be the case for Grandma.

  We had come to visit Grandma twice that week to see how see was doing and we were told she aspirated a couple of times through the night and almost lost her.  My faith was defiantly tried once I had heard those painful words, but I knew that Grandma’s work was not done and she would make it.  We had a date and knew she would be ready for baptism by then!  Grandma immediately began to recover! Her softball size bump on her head was going down like I've never seen before it simply was a miracle. Our prayers and the blessing were at work and they did exactly what needed to be done. 

Once Grandma was able to return home I was thrilled and wanted to continue to teach her more.   We went over to do help Sister Elliot move a lot of furniture to her new business not realizing how appreciative grandma was for all we had done for her and her family.  Later that night we had received a call from Sister Elliot saying “Grandma says she wants to be baptized with Kaleb!” I couldn’t believe what I was hearing so that night I called the Zone Leaders to set up the Baptism interview the next day. They were so happy to be a part of this miracle! We talked about the gospel of Jesus Christ and how he being our example was baptized and how that was done and how I would be baptizing her great grandson Kaleb that same way. Then we had asked Grandma once more if she would like to be baptized? “And she said YES!  The spirit was so strong I knew that grandma had gained a testimony of the power of the priesthood through her experience of the blessing.

The Zone leaders came over and did the interview that same day and ask grandma all the questions and she without hesitation was able to answer every one of them. We knew she was ready spiritually, but we still were a little worried as to if she could physically be baptized is her weakened condition.   I prayed for grandma that night to have her pains relieved from her so that this baptism would be memorable and enjoyable for her.  We had arrived after our transfer meeting and grandma was there in a beautiful all white baptism outfit and she looked very happy but still in some pain. I then said one last prayer for Grandma as I got dressed for this baptism.

As I helped Grandma into the font I saw her pains were gone and she was so peaceful in the water, and I said the prayer put her under the water and as I brought her out of the water she smiled!  That smile meant the world to me I got to the joy in her face, and I'm so happy I was able to be a part of this experience in this family's life.

I was blessed with the privilege of baptizing our investigator "Grandma" Cathryn Ann Hurley on her 93rd Birthday on 12-12-12!! I was born in 93 so that was cool because grandma was born in 1919, and I baptized her at age 19 on 12-12-12. I also got to confirm Grandma that Sunday and that was the 1st confirmation I've done too. I will never forget these miracles that I was able to be a part of and especially my 1st baptism!

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