Saturday, October 29, 2011

All of Heaven was Smiling! (1st Baptism in Uvira RDCongo)

In April 2011, when there was no established church branch in Uvira DRCongo, twelve friends of the church decided that they would not wait any longer to be taught the true gospel of Jesus Christ.  They along with others, in their Uvira community, had been gathering for many, many years each week to read the Book of Mormon and study the principles of the gospel together.  Their desire to be members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints and be baptized, drove them to sacrifice the money, time and effort to travel by transport bus on extremely rough roads for an hour and half (one way) into Bujumbura, Burundi and back, crossing over the country borders multiple times, attending weekly sacrament meetings in the new branch in Bujumbura and being taught by the full-time missionaries.                                                                                     
   On May 14, 2011, they were all baptized in Bujumbura, Burundi.  However, they and others in their community continued to plead for the establishment of the church to come to their homeland city of Uvira.
ALL OF HEAVEN WAS SMILING on this long awaited day and the threatening skies did not give up a drop as the first of many baptisms, which are sure to come, began to finally occur in Uvira, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Africa.

On the 23rd of October 2011, just weeks after the first church Branch of Uvira DRCongo Africa was established, the first baptismal service in the actual city of Uvira was held in the nearby waters of the beautiful Lake Tanganyika. With two witnesses in place, the newly called Branch President lovingly walks hand-in- hand with his young son to perform the first baptism in Uvira. 
            This photo shows how far it actually was for each candidate to wade out. You can barely see the city of Bujumbura, Burundi  across the lake on the far upper left at the foot of the hills.
After each sacred ordinance was performed, the next candidate would anxiously wade out.........
........while another joyously watched and waited.
Each taking their turn.
The last two to be baptized, were a husband and wife who have just had their first little one. What a blessing for them to begin their family knowing, loving, teaching the gospel and serving in the true church of Jesus Christ.

And they were “buried in the water; and they arose and came forth out of the water rejoicing, being filled with the Spirit.” (Mosiah 18:14)
After these worthy men had served their fellow beings by witnessing and baptizing, in the name of their Lord and Savior, their joy could not be hidden!
“…and surely there could not be a happier people among all the people who had been created by the hand of God.” (4 Nephi 1:16)

10 comments:

  1. What a great and inspirational way to start my week by reading your article! What wonderful and faithful Saints the people in the Congo are!

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  2. My heart was touched and I rejoiced as I read your blog. Thank you for taking the time and effort to include such wonderful photos. Somehow, the beauty and joy of these virtuous members just reached out and held my heart. Thank you for making my day!

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  3. There's joy and rejoicing in knowing that the Lord's work is continuing to roll forth throughout the world and penetrating every nation until it fills the whole earth.
    Thank for sharing!

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  4. Thanks so much for your email and the joyous news. There were times in the past when these people would write to the mission headquarters and ask when the church was coming to their city. Through the sacrifices of you and the other couples who have served in Burundi, those dream have been fulfilled. How joyous and wonderful.

    Please give our love to Pres. et Sr. Mutschail, and your daughter-in-law who works at J-Dawgs sends her love to you.

    Our love to you -- Don and Marsha Livingstone

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  5. Thank you so much for posting this! It truly filled my heart with joy today. How wonderful to read something so uplifting coming out of beloved Congo. :)

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  6. We checked in our your blog and saw the pictures and the story of the first baptisms actually in Uvira. We had just received an email from Methode about it and the blog was just pure joy to see. The long awaited time finally came. We're so happy that you were there to capture it. Our thanks for being there. We're so thrilled to share it via blog, since we're not there in person. Our love and congratulations. I know it was a blessing for you as well as for them.

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  7. I am so happy that I was able to read about this wonderful event. The pictures were priceless and what a sweet moment of time. Thanks for sharing this very spiritual experience.

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  8. What beautiful, shining countenances which the Holy Spirit has touched! With all that glowing one can hardly tell what color they are - they are simply glorious. Congratulations to them for their faithfulness and you for yours in taking the gospel to them. Luv to all of you.

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  9. Frere et Soeur Frogley,

    I just came across this blog entry! I'm so happy that you have been able to spend some of your time with the congolese people. They are truly a faithful and precious group. After spending time in the DRC this summer it is especially good to see the fruits of your work there. Great pictures!
    God bless you in your callings,

    John Brinton

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