The last few letters I’ve sent have been full of poor luck so you would think this week would be the week where it all falls into place and we finally get the promised blessings for enduring. False. Well, not entirely…. Good stuff happened, but I have not been given the grand exit from Västerhaninge I was hoping for.
On Friday night, just before Joseph’s baptism, he called us very distressed. He had taken the Saturday off work to be baptized but his boss was demanding he come into work on Saturday or else he would be fired. So, the baptism was cancelled and we called as many people as we could to let them know but still had to wait at the door to tell those who did not get the news that the baptism was off. It was a bit depressing. The worst part is the treatment Joseph gets from his job. It is illegal. In Sweden, you can’t work more than 8 hours a day and get paid double on weekends….He leaves his house at 6 am and gets home at 8 pm every day, getting paid under minimum wage, with no change in salary on weekends, no overtime pay, and no rights. Some people cheat the system, whether it is here in Sweden, in the USA or in India, and the poor people of this world suffer from their horrid greed. The good news is he will be baptized on Saturday and his wife will be baptized the following Saturday.
I’ll be off to Västra Frölunda, Göteborg, on Wednesday so I won’t be able to see the baptisms, but that is all fine, for I must be off to the great west. I’m quite excited. Göteborg is the Portland of Sweden. Laid back, down to earth, hip and beautiful. I’ll also be missing Västerhaninge dearly though. I’ll miss Maryam, my dearest Persian friend. It has been so wonderful to be able to see her grow, from the day we first met her, a shy angel with a world of worry and sorrow on her shoulder, to now. The gospel has changed her. She is confident and happy and serves everyone she meets, with her limited Swedish and actions that speak more than words. The day she was baptized was one of the happiest days. This week we were able to go to the temple with Maryam to do baptisms and it was incredible. She cried for the first time since she left Iran. AAAAAHHHHH I will miss her loads. Even though not everything in Västerhaninge went according to planned, Maryam changed my life, and her life was changed too, and that is worth more than all the world’s riches.