Sunday, October 5, 2014

Benson's In White

September 29, 2014
Hello Everyone,
Beautiful Baptism!
Well, what a good week for our family! I was sooo sooo excited to get onto email today and see all of the wedding pictures and hear the details! You should have seen me when I rushed into the computer cafe. We are not emailing at the library today so we can send pictures. It is only a few zloty so it is worth it. I sat down, quickly emailed the president and then opened up my email account. The computer screen is a bit fuzzy so you can imagine me with my nose like two inches from the screen trying to see the pictures in more detail haha. It looks like it was a smashing hit as Walace and Gromit would have said! I will be looking forward to some more pictures definitely! Chelsea looks absolutely stunning, and my own dear brother turned out to be quite the stud! I am so happy for you all!
To start of this week, I got to go on exchanges with Sister Moncure from Warsaw I. She is actually from Idaho Falls, so it was fantastic to get to spend some quality time with a fellow Idahoan. She is seriously the sweetest thing ever. She came and worked with me in my area, Warsaw II, so I was essentially in charge which was crazy. It was definitely a big learning experience and I had to really learn to take more initiative. Tuesday was also the first legitimately cold day here in Poland and we were ill prepared, thus we froze. We had some plans set up that we thought would mean we would be inside all day, instead we spent about three hours out street teaching at various times through the day and stood at a train station and bus stop for like an hour and a half. We were supposed to take a train out of the city with a member to do her visiting teaching with her, but once we rode the train out and waited for the bus forever, it never came. We didn't take gloves or coats with us, so during our dinner hour (since we were too far away to run home) we caved and went to the mall and bought scarves and gloves and then just froze in our sweaters for the remainder of the evening. It's funny because last p-day we went shopping for winter stuff and I only bought like one thing because I was like, it is not even cold yet haha! Yeah the next day I was regretting that! We will definitely be looking for winter stuff soon. The season is officially changing.
We had a really cool experience on Wednesday. We got a text with an address from a self-referral. When we got to the apartment and rang the dom-a-phone, a super cute girl answered. She buzzed us in and we went and knocked on the door. When it opened, there stood two of the cutest, most bright and smilie, Polish girls I have ever laid eyes on. Both are students at one of the universities here in Warsaw. Somehow one of them had already read 1 Nephi without even owning a Book of Mormon, but we made sure to give her a copy. She just blows me away. She had already read all about us online, and when she referred herself online she thought she was ordering a package, the Book of Mormon, so she was super surprised when we arrived with it haha! Anyways we had a fantastic lesson, somehow my Polish was just on fire (probably not gramatically) and it was just a really cool experience. Then she ended up coming to our baptism on Saturday, stayed the whole time, helped us clean up afterward, and then she came to all three hours of church on Sunday. I guess she was so nervous on Saturday to come to the baptism that she walked three laps of the chapel before she could work up the courage to come in. Anyways she starts school this week so she won't have much spare time, but she just makes me so excited. The work is going well.
So on to the baptism, I know you are all wondering how that went down. Saturday was an emotional stressful rollarcoaster, but a wonderfully fantastic day! It was one of the most pure things in the world to see your investigator dressed in white on their baptism day. We got a call on Friday night telling us that the elders didn't have time to help set up the Wolska chapple for the baptism, so we would have to drop all of our plans and get there super early. Come to find out on Saturday that "setting up for the baptism" means boiling pot upon pot of water to heat up the baptismal font. I assumed that since there was a font in the chapple with running water, it would be no big deal, but the water heater broke a few years ago and so now they have to do it by hand. And especially with Anna's delicate condition from chemotherapy, which she started this week, we had to make sure everything was decently warm. So we spent five hours on Saturday hauling and transporting pots of boiling water from the kitchen all the way around to the other side of the chapple and dumping it in the font. After five hours we barely had it warm enough. We also had to set up heaters in the font area and bathroom for her. It was crazy! I think I about broke my wrist and the chapple stove after a couple of hours of hard labor haha! Totally worth it though! We got her all dressed, took some pics, and then it began. Sister Tobler, Anna, and I actually got to sing at the service and it turned out beautifully. She got confirmed on Sunday and she will make a wonderful addition to our branch. She bore a beautiful testimony afterwards, and we are praying that this chemotherapy will not damage but help her body to fight the cancer. We had almost a record baptismal attendance so many people came. It was pretty cool. Lot's of good food, lots of good people!
Sister Benson and Moncure
I just want you to know that while yes... I was focusing on my work, I was thinking of all of you all day on Friday and Saturday. I kept checking my watch and saying, oh I wonder how they feel right now, ugh I am so glad I am not getting married right now, oh they are waking up right now, oh they are at the temple right now, oh my goodness they are probably married right now! As much of a bummer as it is to miss Drewbies wedding, it was a special thing to have a baptism on the same day. I truly gave up a year and a half of my life with my family, so that others could be with theirs for eternity. In Salt Lake City my family was dressed in white and growing, and here in Warsaw Poland my own investigator was dressed in white taking the first step and growing the gospel family. The work of salvation is important! I was very touched to hear that I was remembered amidst all of the celebration. Thank you for that family! You are all so important to me and I love you more than words can express. Congratulations on a successful happy marriage and may the coming months bring everyone much rest, peace, love, and happiness. I pray for you daily and know that angels are watching over you in my place. Have a fantastic week.
With Love,
Sister Benson

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