Hna Hinckley and I have just returned from a remarkable Mission Presidents Seminar in Preston, England where we were instructed and edified by Elder L. Tom Perry, Elder Ronald A. Rasband, and the Area Presidency. It was both a spiritual feast and a source of numerous practical ideas to help us become more effective in building the Church in Europe. There was a clear expression by the Brethren that Europe is about to enter the most exciting period of missionary work here since the work began in 1837.
At the River Ribble where the first baptisms in Europe took place
It is of note that convert baptisms in the Spain Barcelona Mission are running about 40% ahead of last year, in spite of the fact that we have significantly fewer missionaries. Although our missionary force is shrinking in numbers, they are growing in power and there is a great spirit moving across Spain and Europe. This is an exciting time to be a missionary in Spain!
We continue to see miracles daily and weekly. Last week a pair of Sister missionaries were trying to get in touch with a family but were unable to reach them; late one evening they were about to give up, realizing that they needed to hurry back to their apartment to be in on time. They headed home with a prayer in their heart, and the family they were hoping to see walked around the corner towards them! Another pair of missionaries reported that they had 9 investigators at Church on Sunday, all of them brought by ward members! Another pair of missionaries were riding the tram to an appointment when a woman approached and asked them if they believed in the Old and New Testaments. They replied affirmatively and added that they also believed in the Book of Mormon, Another Testament of Christ. She asked if she could buy one, and they told her they would give her one for free the next day if she came to Church. She showed up at Sacrament Meeting, received her free Book of Mormon, and is now being taught. This is just a sample of what we experience every week!