Monday, August 31, 2009

Fernandina Beach, FL Letter # 13 August 31, 2009

Hello Everyone (Yes that means you too)

Hey this week, was very stressful for Elder Bowen and I. As you know, we were planning on getting Ron baptized on Wednesday, because he could not make it to church the last Sunday for his scheduled baptism. If you recall last week I mentioned that his legs would not work and he kept falling all over the place in his house. So we were shooting for Wednesday the 26th, as that is what Ron wanted. Yeah we were planning for sure on the baptism Wednesday, and getting everything all ready for it. We wanted to give him a few days to see if he would feel a little better (and stronger).

Then this past Tuesday we were out tracting in his area, and we saw an ambulance turn onto his street with its lights off. We were so worried that he was dead. So we jumped into our car and drove straight to his house. However, we were relieved to find out that he was being shipped to a hospital hospice center, due to the fact he could no longer take care of himself. His home nurse was there and his friend, so they told us what was going on with our good buddy Ron. I guess the nurse had called the ambulance so they could move him easily to the hospice center. We asked for the address of where it was located and found out it was a center located in Jacksonville, Florida. After we got the address, we had to call President Newman to see if we could go out of our area to visit Ron. We are not allowed to drive out of our designated area without receiving permission from the Mission President. We were able to receive permission to visit Ron. Since we had permission, we went the next day into Jacksonville, to see Ron. He did not know we were coming so when we walked into his room; and he was like all smiles and said “Hey guys!" lol he was pretty excited to see us! We talked to him for a bit and then we asked him "Ron do you still want to be baptized? Cause if you do we can make this work, we promise we will find away to baptize you." He said, “Yes” he wanted to be baptized.

We thought the best place to start working on his request would be to talk to the nurses. We went and talked to the nurses to see if we could possible transport Ron to one of our churches in order to fulfill his wish and baptized him. The nurses said that they have a chapel here and they could easily set us up a time to meet with the local Chaplin to see if we could use his font. They set us up to meet with the Chaplin at 2:00pm the next day. Elder Bowen and I talked about it and we decided Instead of driving all the way back into to Jacksonville the next day, we would just call and talk to the Chaplin at 2:00pm. So I called the front desk and the nurse said that the Chaplin was already in Ron's room, so they transferred me directly to Ron's room.

I talked to Ron and he said, “That he is not getting baptized, and that he wants to remain a Baptist.” I then asked why? Ron said that he had been reading some things about the Book of Mormon that he just does not agree with. (The thing is with Ron; his eyes are bad and he cannot read the Book of Mormon. All the reading that was done with Ron was I and Elder Bowen reading to him, we always had to read to him). So basically, the Chaplin had scared Ron out of being baptized. I have to admit that I was pretty mad and hurt and part of me wanted to go throw down with the Chaplin. But instead, we called and talked to President Newman about what he thought we should do. President Newman said that we might just have to let this go. He said that the Chaplin only has one investigator to deal with and he will be at the hospice there 5 days a week (or so). President Newman also said that we have several investigators waiting for us to work with them, and then he said that we do more a week then he would do in a year. That was nice to hear the president say that, but I am still pretty upset about it. If I had my way, that Chaplin and me would still have more than just words. So now, we are focused on our other investigators.

Good news though, the week started picking up super well over the weekend and it looks like we have several new “solid” investigators. So for Elder Bowen and I that is really the main event of this next week….Work with the solids, they are easier to hold! (ha-ha)

Elder Bowen and I are at Ronee’s house again doing laundry today. So yeah, I will be here writing for a while because I have a lot of laundry to do this week. Man it is amazing how much laundry you have to do every week when you don’t have a mother doing it for you! LOL Anyway I am one with the washing machine…sweetness! I know I said this before, but I really love the branch members here, they are so supportive of missionary work!

So like anything new at home? What has changed, what is happening with everyone? Is there anything new I should put on my list “to do” when I get back?

Elder Bowen and I are not being transferred so we will remain in this area for six more weeks. There is still work to do here, and it is for a reason that I am staying in Fernandina Beach. Elder Bowen and I (since we are not being transferred) are also buying a gym membership this transfer. We will begin our days even earlier, work the body out each morning, and then work the spirit out the rest of the day! These Elders love to get up even earlier each day! ha-ha

I gotta get going my laundry is done ha ha!! Well until next week then- That’s all for now. Hope all is well with you guys. Love you all and know that I am always thinking about everyone back home! Love you!!

Elder (one with the washer) Blair