The Mighty Aurora Ohana

Hey everyone,

It’s been a beautiful week here in Aurora! I absolutely love the people here. Everybody is really open to talking to us, which means we have a TON of investigators. Basically our job is to figure out who is actually interested! Haha and it is super sketch here (if you look up Montbello you will know what I mean). Luckily all of the resident drunks love missionaries. Also I’m becoming accustomed to the constant wail of sirens. If you don’t hear them, you know something’s wrong. Don’t worry, Sister Mitchell and I are keeping ourselves out of trouble:)

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The Aurora zone calls itself the Mighty Aurora Ohana. As you probably know, ohana means family, and family means nobody gets left behind or forgotten. We’re committed to talking to everyone and helping them come to Christ!

By the way, Sister Mitchell is amazing! She has wonderful testimony and a beautiful heart, plus she’s super smart and went to MIT before her mission. Hopefully some math skills will rub off on me.

One of my favorite investigators is this cute old man who has been coming to church for a year and a half and still hasn’t been baptized. The missionaries picked him back up right before I came. We had a couple lessons with him last week, and it went really well! He has such strong faith in Christ, and the Spirit has been really strong as we’ve discussed how the gospel helps us find healing through His Atonement. One of my favorite things on my mission is seeing people discover hope through the Savior. It is a beautiful thing!

There’s this returning less-active who lives in a group home, and I think he’s going to baptize everyone in it. Last transfer, one of his friends there was baptized. Then when we were meeting with him on Saturday, he wanted a Book of Mormon to give to another of his friends there. The next day when we saw him at church, he had not only given the Book of Mormon to her, but had brought her to church as well! Then after church he asked us to come see her, so we went over and now we’re teaching her and she’s really interested in learning more! Haha Sister Mitchell and I think maybe we should just go teach classes at the group home every day:D

So this morning I was reading Jesus the Christ by James E. Talmage, and I was reading in chapter 12 about Nicodemus. It was really interesting! I loved this paragraph:

“The narrative of this interview between Nicodemus and the Christ constitutes one of our most instructive and precious scriptures relating to the absolute necessity of unreserved compliance with the laws and ordinances of the gospel, as the means indispensable to salvation. Faith in Jesus Christ as the Son of God, through whom alone men may gain eternal life; the forsaking of sin by resolute turning away from the gross darkness of evil to the saving light of righteousness; the unqualified requirement of a new birth through baptism in water, and this of necessity by the mode of immersion, since otherwise the figure of a birth would be meaningless; and the completion of the new birth through baptism by the Spirit—The narrative of this interview between Nicodemus and the Christ constitutes one of our most instructive and precious scriptures relating to the absolute necessity of unreserved compliance with the laws and ordinances of the gospel, as the means indispensable to salvation. Faith in Jesus Christ as the Son of God, through whom alone men may gain eternal life; the forsaking of sin by resolute turning away from the gross darkness of evil to the saving light of righteousness; the unqualified requirement of a new birth through baptism in water, and this of necessity by the mode of immersion, since otherwise the figure of a birth would be meaningless; and the completion of the new birth through baptism by the Spirit—all these principles are taught herein in such simplicity and plainness as to make plausible no man’s excuse for ignorance. All these principles are taught herein in such simplicity and plainness as to make plausible no man’s excuse for ignorance.”

I love how Christ’s gospel is so clear: faith, repentance, baptism by immersion, and receiving the gift of the Holy Ghost. As we do these things and endure to the end, we will be able to find peace and joy through the Atonement of Jesus Christ. We will be able to learn from our mistakes and be a little better each day. And eventually we will be prepared to live in God’s presence. The gospel is so beautiful and so simple, and the best thing is that it works! Living the gospel has brought me so much joy, and I’m grateful for the opportunity to share it:)

I love you all and hope you have a fantastic week!
Love,
Sister Stratford

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