Well, another week here in the mission. We spent in the house resting and I went back out to work through the end of the week. Not the best idea. I probably should have rested more because I was simply exhausted and sore until . My hands were super swollen (#swolepatrol) and hurt a lot.
I believe I had one of the most powerful spiritual moments of my mission yesterday. We found out who robbed us - a young man in the ward named Junior. He is 18 and was preparing to serve a mission when I first came to Cofradía, but things have dramatically changed beginning a month ago. I do not know all the details, but he is going through a lot right now. He moved in with his 24 year old girlfriend (who already has a 1 year old daughter) about a month ago and has gotten involved in drugs and alcohol because of her. She is extremely manipulative (chocoleyde aka fornication is governing his decisions) and she is also involved in the mara. He robbed us and then a week later he robbed the missionaries in Naco as well.
The other elders found out when they visited the mother of Junior. He had come back drunk and had inflicted harm on her and his sister. The mom said he had been involved in a robbery and the missionaries asked to see some of the items and they were ours. We were able to get back the cameras, dvd player, but my cash was spent...clothes for his girlfriend, lunch in SPS with his girlfriend, drugs and alcohol. Our items were in the house of another member who was involved, but things were a little more complicated for Naco as they were in the house of the girlfriend. In order to try to get the items back for Naco, we went after church with the Elders Quorum President, Carlos Rodriguez.
We walked 20 minutes from the central park in order to get to Junior´s house. We met with his mom who had her wrist taped up from a knife cut from the night before. Junior had once again returned drunk. His phone was off so we had to go to the house of the girlfriend and call for him. We went and called for him but he did not respond. To avoid us, he put on reggaeton music on his stereo. It looked like we had come in vain. After talking with the mom again in her house for 10 minutes or so, we returned one more time. Nothing. An impression came to mind that we should sing hymns, so we did. 194-199 in the spanish hymn book...Cuando hay amor, Las Familias pueden ser eternas, soy un hijo de dios, siempre obedece los mandamientos, hazme andar en la luz, and Dios vive. It worked. When we reached "Soy un hijo de Dios" he had changed the reggaeton music to EFY music (SOY) and had opened up the windows twice to look at us. I looked at him in the eye (everything else was dark except for "the whites of his eyes") and smiled and nodded my head. By the end of our singing, he came out. We went back to his mom´s house to have the lesson.
Before beginning, we decided it would be good to give him a blessing of consuelo y consejo. When we asked him who he wanted to give the blessing, he said the one who had the idea to sing the hymns. I had the privelege to give him the blessing. We then sat down on the couch, shared our testimonies, scriptures, and more than anything encouraged him to come back to the fold. Very spiritual experience. I´m not much of a crier, but during the blessing and the lesson I teered up a couple times and truly felt the pure love of Christ for him. We all felt extremely close to the Savior and felt the power of His atoning sacrifice. I don´t believe I have explained very well, and I probably will never be able to put it into words, but it was one of the most memorable experiences of my life. It also reminded me of Jean Valjean from Les Miserables. He had stolen from the Catholic Bishop (or whoever it was) and the Bishop forgave him and gave him new life with the candle sticks (which he ended up not using as I recall). I attached a mormon message that is very good as well. I don´t know if Junior is going to repent or not, but if there are no "fruits" and he continues to dive deeper in sin, the experience itself has at least had a huge impact on me.
E, an investigator that we have been teaching, came to church. He was the only one, but he really enjoyed it. At the end of Sacrament Meeting, he said "I want to talk with the Sacerdote" to which I corrected him (again) and led him to the Bishop. He is interested in getting baptized and becoming a member. I will give more details on him in the future as he progresses more.
The Savior wants to Forgive:
Cofradía 1, Zona Cofradía 7/27/15 -