Elder Stanojevic and Elder Gilbert have been serving in the Spanish speaking ward in Heidelberg together since the middle of December. Here in Heidelberg, we were really starting to take off and see a good amount of progress in the last few transfers. This included the miracle baptism of a friend we met at a ward Christmas party, who was then baptized six weeks later. This amazing sister proved to be such a light and good example that another friend of hers realized that whatever she had become a part of was something good.
As a mission, we entered quarantine on the 18th of March and quickly got to work on trying to find creative ways to find new friends. We eventually decided to plan and do a lesson through Facebook live. The video wasn’t too big of an ordeal, we had posted a few stories announcing it a few days ahead of time, but it drew a moderate amount of attention. In this lesson, we taught a general gospel principle about the Atonement of the Savior and how it helps us to grow (something rather universal.) To our delight, the friend of our new member watched and enjoyed the lesson. The next day, she reached out to Elder Gilbert with this message:
“Thank you very much for your watch party. I’m a Christian and I’m looking for some sisters and brothers in faith since many years. At the moment I'm alone but hope to know you all as soon as possible. No matter in what way. God bless you and your family.”
Excitedly, we began messaging her and almost immediately sent her a link to the “Joseph Smith, Prophet of the Restoration” movie. We scheduled a video lesson for a few days later where we invited her to be baptized on the 16th of May. She said yes! As we have continued to get to know her better during our lessons, we found out that she had actually seen us a few times on the street but was always too afraid to come up and speak with us in person. We know that if we hadn’t taken the time and effort to start doing more work online, she would probably not have had the courage to reach out to us and find her new brothers and sisters in Christ. It feels strange to say “thank you” to Corona and the quarantine for giving us the need to learn how to use Facebook well. She now meets regularly online with all four of us missionaries in the same city. Each lesson her love and understanding of the gospel grows more and more!
Elder Stanojevic & Elder Gilbert
Germany Frankfurt Mission