Monday, August 11, 2014


My goodness, it was a great week! Alright, I'll tell you the two most major things that happened this week; they were incredible!

I had the awesome, awesome opportunity to witness the baptism of the “M” family, this past Saturday. This was hands down the best baptism I've ever attended or been a part of in my entire life. All week we were giving out invitations to the baptism, and the family invited like 20 people themselves to the baptism, so we were anticipating quite a bit of people to come. We set up a ton of chairs in the relief society room, because that's where the font is. We underestimated the amount of people that would attend. Seriously, nearly the entire ward was there, on top of non-members, other missionaries, and family friends! We had to move the service into the CHAPEL to fit everyone; it was insane!
It was SO powerful. The talks were phenomenal; the spirit was so strong. Then, we all walked over to the baptismal font, and all the chairs were taken and tons of people were standing all around to see. Elder Vega and I were the witnesses, and one by one we saw all 5 family members (who are old enough to be baptized) go into the water. A family friend came all the way out from Virginia, and he performed all 5 of the baptisms. He did them all in one go. The spirit filled the entire room. It was incredible.
Brother “M” was the first to be baptized.  As he came up, I looked over at sister “M” who was going to be next, and she was bawling. Then, I looked at the rest of the room and everyone was crying. There wasn't a dry eye in the room. Even the other missionaries, who do this stuff all the time, were crying. It was insane. They were all baptized and entered the kingdom of God on the 26th of July, 2014. After the service, we had a little refreshment thing in the cultural hall, which I have a couple picture of to show you how many people came to the baptism! It was awesome. Relief society did a great job; it was pretty much a ward party. ahha.  It was great!  And, we got some new investigators that day, too!
The next day they were confirmed in church.  Our bishop did the confirmation of brother and sister “M,” and Brother “B” did the confirmations of the children. They. Were. So. Powerful.  Brother “B” gave the most beautiful confirmations I've ever heard in my life. You could tell he put a lot of spiritual preparation, and probably a lot of studying and fasting to be prepared to give them the confirmations they needed to hear. I wish you all could have been there; I was nearly in tears as I stood in the circle. There were things that he said that you knew he couldn't have known; there were things that each of those children needed to hear directly from their Father in Heaven. It was so incredible.
Finally, the other cool thing that happened: on church this Sunday, we were publicly congratulated and praised in priesthood for the work we've done in this ward, and the 6 baptisms we've seen these last two weeks. But, that wasn't the cool thing; I'm just leading up to something else.
After sacrament, there was a little boy; I've never seen him my whole life, he's not even in our ward...He came up to elder vega and me, with his family, and his mom said "can he take a picture with you guys?" We were like "uh, sure!" and she was like "we'll tell you why after the picture."
So, the little boy, maybe like 5 or 6 years old, has an iphone and takes a selfie with us. Then, his mom said "you guys just made his week. You're his heroes, he loves you guys. Thank you so much!" and they walked away. It melted my heart. I didn't know that little boy; I didn't even know that family. But he came up to us and wanted a picture with us because we were his "heroes." I just about cried. It was so humbling.
Then, after that, one of the girls we baptized last week drew a picture of her holding hands with elder vega & me, and gave it to us.
I realized yesterday, for the first time, the kind of mantle I bear as a missionary. You feel like you're the same person as you were back home, just refined and a better version. You don't feel like, when you're set apart, that you now "have the mantle" that everyone talks about. I still felt like mason. And, slowly as you continue your mission, that mantle becomes stronger. People constantly tell you they feel different when they're around you, and i'm like "psh, okay, I’m just some kid who actually reads his scriptures, that's all." but no, I finally realized it. As Mason Snow, I wouldn't be anybody to these people in the Parkwood ward. I'd be any other person there. But as elder snow, there are kids asking to take pictures with me, drawing me pictures, and praising us for the work we do in priesthood and over the pulpit. It isn't me that they're praising, though. it's the mantle that I bear. It took me 10 months to realize that, despite what I want to believe, I AM different as a missionary. I am a representative of our Savior Jesus Christ, and others recognize that. How grateful am I to bear that mantle and aid our Savior in His work.
I love you all! Have a great week!

Elder Snow

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