So this week was the baptism! Jennifer and Christina were baptized by their dad. It's the rescue in action. I was fretting a bit, since the service was sparsely attended. It didn't matter as I watched the girls be baptized and the spirit testified to me that this is it. This is baptism and the baptism that God wants for us. I was so happy for this family.

This coming week a 13 year old girl is getting baptized. The rest of her family are returning/ newly baptized members. I'll actually be the one baptizing her, so I'm pretty excited for that. This is one of the last steps in helping them get to the temple.

We did have some sad news this week. Silaa won't be able to be baptized until the end of summer. His Mother is worried about his level of commitment. She doesn't think he's all in. He is and has a strong testimony. It's a bummer, and this seems to be the trend in the stake. I can't understand for the life of me why these parents won't let their kids join. With EJ's mom in Newark, she saw the changes in him and absolutely loved it. She herself didn't necessarily want to join, be she saw the great impact it was having. It seems like everyone out here has a "my way" mentality and that really hurts these kids who are prepared for the Gospel. Silaa is taking it in stride and is willing to show his parents that he is committed. He still wants to be baptized and was in church yesterday after his mom told him about this. We're just so thankful that she didn't make him wait until he is 18. I hope his Mom keeps up her end because that would mean he will still be baptized before I go home.

Pleasanton is rolling. Have a good week.

-Elder James Richards