Last Dinner Appointment with the Neilson Family- July 2, 2012


Miracle Baptism!

Jul 4, 2011

Hey Family,

Whoa, that's all i can say about this week. I don't know if i have ever seen the Lords hand as much as i have this very week. We had a baptism! Crazy i know and out of the blue. Jon's heart was softened and we were able to baptize him before the month of July. It has been a week of adventure and change. At Zone leader conference we had the chance to meet our new Mission President, President Clements. I know he's been called of God. Oh and i'm over the hump--it's been a YEAR!

Jon's Baptism! To start with the story, Jon was an investigator that has been investigating for about a year now. He's 19 years old and his girl friend is a member of the church. For the longest time we've been trying to get this guy baptized because really, nothing was holding him back. I mean nothing! Jon's so legit he's taking a Book of Mormon class for school and will be attending BYU Idaho in the winter. Elder Bowen and I couldn't figure out why he didn't want to be baptized. We invited him several times in the past, but he always came back with "I didn't receive my answer yet". We then received revelation to teach him about missionary work. Does it seem weird to teach a investigator about this topic? I think not! It was pure revelation from the spirit and something I'll never forget. He pulled us aside and told us he was thinking a lot about that and his girl friend has been thinking about going on a mission. We basically told him that his talents and abilities were needed in the Kingdom of God. And so this last Thursday, Jon decided to be baptized-- the 30th of June! Our mission was also looking for 1 more miracle baptism to reach our goal for 60 baptisms! The whole mission was praying for Jon when we invited him to be baptized on Wednesday. Revelation again, because he told us for some reason that that date felt right. Jon knew he was supposed to be baptized in 22 hours time (3:00 pm Thursday). He accepted and we began to coordinate the baptism in less than a day! The ward was wonderful, members came and supported Jon and his special day.

What was really cool was Jon's parents were able to make it. They are very busy people but the Lord made it happen. Jon's parents are very supportive in his decision to be baptized. Elder Bowen baptized Jon while i had the responsibility of teaching Jon's family and the ward members the restoration lesson in between the actual ordinance and the Holy Ghost talk. As i taught the restoration with Elder Berns, there was a lot of hype in the air because Jon's parents have their own faith and are very strong in that. The members were a little timed i guess you could say in being bold. It was a little more stressful because Jon's family were staring me down sitting on the very very front row. Despite the pressure, Elder Berns and I were able to testify and teach the restoration lesson in 8 minutes. After Jon came in, he was a new person, and he had a new light about him. I look back and i know that the Lord really did give this miracle to us. The bad news it wasn't number 60. We finished with 58 baptisms for the month of June because two baptisms didn't go through. My heart was broken after all the hype and hard work to try and send off President Howell with doubling our baptisms. Oh well, we're going for a repeat for 60 in July.

Jon's confirmation went well the following Sunday. His parents again came and supported his confirmation. Jon's father came up to us and thanked Elder Bowen for the blessing, and then he commented " I think i have something that i can learn here. We'll have to have you boys come over one of these days". Sweet! We would love to teach Jon's parents!

As for other Hudson news, we had a surprise investigator show up at church. His name is Josh and the missionaries taught him before in the past. He's 25 years old and is looking for a church. Haha the Lord blessed us again! He's so legit and he's giving us a ride to St Paul next monday for a specialized training! We haven't even known this guy for a day yet. We believe he'll get baptized.

We met President and Sister Clements @ zone leader conference. We met him his 3rd day in the mission but most missionaries won't meet him till the 11th of July when he tours the mission to meet every missionary. I was blown away by President Clements! His whole way of communication and teaching style is brilliant! He's very similar to President Howell. He's very meek and humble but intelligent enough to draw attention. Everything about him i love! We are in great hands and i can't wait to get to know him more! He's very personal and just has a style about him that i love.

My face is totally sunburned! P-day was great today! Elder Bowen and I were able to go to the Hudson ward party and play some football/softball. We wore normal t -shirts and shorts! It felt good to just have some fun and get some sun shine on my white albino legs. It might take me awhile to recover.

Man you travel a lot being a zone leader. Last week we were only in our area for 4 days, and this week looks similar. We'll be going on exchanges with our struggling teams.

Well family i know God performs miracles! I know this is his work and his true living church! Love you all! Stay cool!

Elder Browning


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  2. That is so exciting...keep up the great work! We love reading your posts and keeping up with your mission. Thanks for your example :) My parents went into the MTC yesterday. On Friday they are off to serve a mission in Detroit Michigan. We are so blessed to have so many great missionaries representing the Lord and his true church. Take care!