Happy Tuesday! I couldn't write this yesterday because yesterday was a crazy Monday and I can't wait to tell you all about it. So. Let's get to it.At 12:45 pm yesterday morning, Elder Hafer and I found ourselves in a judge's office in the Verón city hall with our branch president and a lovely couple named Jordanny and Nailín. They were getting married in preparation for their baptism the same night. And the fact that I could write this last paragraph is a miracle.
mission, Jordanny actually contacted us. He stopped Elder Hafer and I in the street and was like, "Hey, you guys are Mormons, right?" and we were like, "Well. Yeah. Mormonazos." And he was like, "Cool. I have a buddy named Fernando who's a Mormon and he's pretty legit." So we were like, "Hey, that's awesome. Do you have any specific questions we can answer for you?" and he was like, "Yes. What do I have to do to get baptized?" After we picked our jaws up off the ground, we were like. "Wow. That's the best question we've gotten all day." And so it was. We met his wife, Nailín, which actually complicated things somewhat because, like roughly ninety-eight percent of all couples under the age of 25 who live together in this country, him and his wife were not married. But they were both very receptive and they love each other and so they agreed to get married and then baptized. This was back at the end of February. Everything was going so smoothly.
And so it was that the entire pediatric ward in the Dario Contreras Hospital in Santo Domingo bowed their heads and listened in reverence to the humble, heartfelt prayer of a Mormon mission president from America. I wasn't even there and it's still one of the most precious moments of my mission.
And so, finally, yesterday, Jordanny and Nailín were married by the law and then baptized as the newest members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. The service was so beautiful. Everything went perfectly. Well, apart from the fact that I had to baptize Jordanny three times, which kind of boggles the mind when you consider that I dropped him on the second attempt. The problem was that we were baptizing him in the kiddie pool, which is fine if you're five foot four, but where Jordanny is about six feet tall, the water only came up to about two inches above his knees. We wised up and the third time, we moved to the adult pool and it worked much better.
Experiences like this only reinforce my testimony. In spite of all the struggles and challenges we faced along the way, it's been a worthy fight. Every time we visit them in their home, we can feel a spirit of love and peace that did not exist there the first time we crossed that threshold. The Lord has helped them to find a love and devotion to him and to each other that I want emulated in my own marriage whenever that day comes. It's a miracle how He's been able to change them in so little time and I can't wait to see where they'll be in the months and years to come.
So! Another week has passed out here in Verón. As of myself, I just feel full. Full of empanadas, full of happiness, just full. The mission isn't easy and there are times when I feel frustrated. But I know where I'm supposed to be and I thank God every day He allowed a dingbat like me to be a part of this miraculous work.
I hope you all have the grandest of weeks.
Elder Dallin Johnson
P.S. If you're reading this P.S., you're also a testimony to me of the miracle of enduring this email to end, and I congratulate you.