We had yet another great week in Maribor, and the obvious highlight was the baptism of Gaja on Wednesday.
We spent Monday and Tuesday getting things ready for the baptism – filling and heating the font, buying and cooking food, making programs, etc. Everything was going wonderfully. When we woke up on Wednesday morning though, we were somewhat disappointed to see that it was raining. Then, to our shock and horror that rain turned to sleet, and then full-on snow. Of ALL the days to have a freak snow storm, it just had to be Wednesday…
Despite the snow, we continued to get everything ready for the baptism that evening. First missionaries started showing up, then Ines and Gaja, and then (to our great relief) members. You never know who will come to events – especially in the snow – but by the time the baptism started there were probably 35 people in the chapel.
The program itself was wonderful, and the Spirit was strong throughout. Ines gave a talk on baptism – her first talk as a member – and then we heard from our Relief Society president. After a musical number from the Ljubljana missionaries, it was time for the actual baptism! It’s amazing that such a simple and quick ordinance carries so much significance, but those 30 seconds in the font are some of the most important seconds in our lives. With every baptism that I witness, I gain a stronger and stronger testimony of the power that comes from making sacred promises with God.
After the baptism, we had the chance to hear Gaja bear her testimony. It was simple and beautiful, and she was so happy and excited that she could barely speak! It was a lot of fun to watch someone feel so good about the decision they had just made. All-in-all it was a fantastic evening and I couldn’t be happier for Gaja and for the Maribor branch. In one month we’ve seen two young and energetic additions to our branch, and I think it’ll do wonders for the church here.
The rest of the week was good, although it paled in comparison to Wednesday. On Thursday morning the Johnsons, Ines and Gaja were off to a Young Single Adult conference in Zagreb, and we were left all alone in Maribor. So we cleaned the church, tracted in the student dorms… the usual. By Sunday everyone was back at home, and Gaja was confirmed as the newest member of the Church.
Being a missionary, although at times difficult, is one of the most rewarding jobs there is. We give up time and means to come on missions, but in return get to be witnesses as the Lord hastens His work and gathers His elect into the Church. What could be better than that!