A wonderful, wonderful week.
But first, a little side-note. For the next month or so I wouldn't send me any letters. We're going to be moving into a new house and our mission office is also changing address, so I would just send anything as an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Elder Endicott and I traveled up to Layton this past week for these two people: Jose and Susana.
Jose and his wife met each other in a rather odd way: he was a mechanic fixing her car. She went back after a week to find out why he hadn't called and one of the other mechanics told her he was sick. She got his address and went out to get her keys. When she got there he was in bed dying (not figuratively, but days away from death). She knew he had no-one helping him so she sort of adopted him and took him in. Then he never left :) Then he got baptized three years later. Now they are going to be married in the Temple in a year or so. Woohoo.
Susana comes from a family of mostly members of our church (they all were baptized about 30 years ago). But she smoked a pack a day since she was 17 so accepting the gospel and being baptized was never an option she felt she had (aka...this: http://mormon.org/commandments and click the "Word of Wisdom" tab). But her best friend, Hermana Camacho, invited her over for an english class and we happened to stop by at the same time. We promised her in the name of Jesus Christ that through her faith, the priesthood power of God, and a stop-smoking lesson we teach, she would be able to quit. So...in a week, she quit. Forty-two years after her first cigarette, she quit for good. For two months she hasn't touched a cigarette. Her life has forever been changed. No more habits keeping her from being free. (She nearly kissed us when she saw us arrive at the baptism).
This gospel is about changing people: good people into better people, and bad people into good people. That is why I always want my friends and family to accept it and be baptized. You're always welcome to say no (scout's honor it won't hurt my feelings). But if you ever wonder why I want you to be baptized, it's because of that. Because I know without a doubt it will make you happier and it will make your family happier.
And believe it or not...they don't even pay us to say this type of stuff. We pay to be out here with our own money (or that of family or friends). We do it because we love it. We do it because its true. I do it because I personally know its true and comes of God and because I love Christ much. He is our Savior and all He and Heavenly Father (aka...God) want to do it bless us. They have no desire except to bless us and help us return to them because they love us so much (aka...charity).