Wind 5 mph from the northwest
The last three nights we have entertained missionaries, some with investigators. Friday noon, of course, Sister Cindy fed the District's 12 missionaries plus one native Russian missionary on his way home from the Rostov Mission.
That night we had the sisters, Cropper & Tymochko, and two investigators, Nastia and Lienna. Saturday night we hosted three returned sister missionaries and Sunday night we had elders Bradshaw and Olson with them a 23 year old yong man named Vitali.
Nastia has been investigating the church for two years after being introduced to the church at (about) age 15 by a Latvian sister, Sister Landik, in Nastia's home town of Ulan-Ude. Sister Cropper met her there during her training as a Greenie and remembered that she was going to go to the university in Novosibirsk. Nastia was looking for the church here at the same time Sister Cropper was looking for her and they hooked up in Third Branch. She is seventeen now, a first year university student, and is planning to ask her parents permission to be baptized.
Lienna is a 19 year old fellow student who was invited to church by Nastia and has been discussing the Gospel with the sister missionaries for several weeks. She has a baptismal date set for December. Both Nastia and Lienna are bright, charming young women who have been touched by the Spirit as they listen to the truths of the Gospel.
Ilya is an investigator who was baptized last week. He was in our home during the early stages of his introduction to the Gospel. He is bright, inquisitive, and searching for the true church. Even with the limiting factor of working in the office 6-8 hours a day, the office elders found him and have helped him progress to the point that he was ready for baptism and a lifetime commitment to the Gospel and Jesus Christ.
As most of them are, Ilya's baptism was part party and part Sacrament Meeting. The pictures show the joy and fellowship of the members and the missionaries. The talks and actual baptism were spiritual events that cap a finding, teaching, fellowshipping effort that must now continue to keep him in the Church physically and spiritually.
We don't have much opportunity to do personal missionary contacting or finding, but we have been actively involved in the teaching and fellowshipping. Several people who where recently baptized have been taught in our home after one of Sister Cindy's great dinners. We are in the thick of it, but mostly as supporters.
What a Church. What a country.