Our family blog dedicated to following the two year ministry of our oldest son, Elder Mason Roger Taylor, as he serves in the Alabama Birmingham Mission for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints.
And if it so be that you should labor all your days in crying repentance unto this people, and bring, save it be one soul unto me, how great shall be your joy with him in the kingdom of my Father!
And now, if your joy will be great with one soul that you have brought unto me into the kingdom of my Father, how great will be your joy if you should bring many souls unto me!
On October 17, 2010 in Homewood, Alabama, Elder Mason Taylor experienced his first baptism - Matt. Here is the excerpt from his email:
The baptism yesterday truly was an AMAZING experience! I have never seen, or done anything like it before. I was very honored to be a part of the whole thing.
So, getting the whole thing ready to go and done was kind of a complicated. Because, like I said he was hit by a car about 10 years ago. And that whole accident caused his neck to be damaged, so he can't move it side to side or backward. It also messed up his legs so he has to have bandages on his legs at all times and those bandages can’t get wet. He is a pretty big guy so we needed to find him some bigger clothing because he couldn't fit into any of the baptism suits we had. So we found him a really big white button up shirt, and some really big pants. So that wasn't too hard. But, before he could put on the pants, we had to find a way to keep his bandages from getting wet. So we found some white garbage bags, and we had to duct tape them around his legs so they wouldn't get wet. Then we had to help him put on the pants and shirt.
We then had to very slowly lead him down into the font. It took a while because he has to have a cane with him to help him walk and these certain shoes to help him balance and walk better; and obviously he couldn't bring those with him into the font. So it took a while to get him down into the water. After we got him into the water, we did the prayer part of the baptism. Then came another complicated situation . . . getting him under the water. Like I said he can't move his neck, and the bandages keep him from bending his knees. So we kinda had to force him into the water . . . he can't bend his knees so we had to lay him straight backwards. Elder Lasike was in the front helping him and I was in the back supporting him. But we finally got him fully under the water :)
Afterwards, we had to help him get dressed again because there were some things he couldn't do on his own and needed help with. Things like helping him take his shirt off, and help him putting on his pants, and helping him get his shoes done up. That part was a little different, but after a while it felt really good to have helped him in so many ways! It truly was an amazing experience. I haven't felt anything like that before. I loved every second of it. It was hard, but it was all worth it in the end :) I'll never forget it. I have been very blessed to have had the honor and privilege to teach him and to be a part of the baptism. It truly is an experience I will never ever forget! I'll be sending the picture hopefully within the next week or two :) Oh, it was Elder Lasike and Elder Reed who tracked into him. I was there to teach him all the lessons :)
We are so grateful for our missionary son, his success, and who is becoming. His humble testimony of he and Elder Lasike helping Matt "in so many ways" touches and inspires us. We are grateful for the restored gospel of Jesus Christ and the hope it brings to dying world.
After almost two months of being out in the mission field, we finally received a package from Mason. To date, it has just been emails and some letters from the MTC - which have been nice, but we were very anxious to see him in "action" so to speak. Just his day to day experiences. His package had letters for the whole family, a package of pictures from the MTC, and his broken camera (need to get it fixed for him) with another 246 pictures! It was wonderful. I told KD, "I feel like it's Christmas!"
Mason' Mission President posted this. Thought it was great.
We are so proud of our son. He is adjusting to life a s missionary and is learing to lean on his Savior to get him through the difficult parts.
We have not received the package he has been promising us for a month. It has pictures, handwritten letters, and his camera. Another missionary dropped it when taking a picture for him. Thank good for warranties. Maybe, I should have purchased two years : )
Elders Johnsen, Taylor, and Lasike
He looks good. Looks happy. Loves his companion, Elder Lasike. They have a baptism coming up on Oct 17th.
Regarding the baptism, an expert from Mason:
He actualy is getting baptized on the 17th. So next Sunday! :) Im so excited!! He is a stud! About ten years ago, he got hit by a car. It really messed him up! His neck, and his legs are still in very bad condition, and he is unable to bend his knees forward. So last Wednesday we met with him, and he asked us both to baptize him! So how it's going to work is, Elder Lasike is going to do the actual Baptism part, but I'm going to be in the font with them, and Elder Lasike will hold his arm and hands like you would in a regular baptism, and I'll be in the back supporting him on the way down, and supporting him on the way back up! I'm soooo excited and so honored to be apart of this! It'll be happening at 12:30 this Sunday!! I'm way pumped! Kinda of nervous, but way pumped! So continue to keep him in your prayers :) He is such a stud! I love the dude to death!
Mason Talking to Sister Kathleen Cope
Caption from Mission President regarding the pitcure left:
"Sister Cope visiting with Elder Taylor (his father was a missionary in Sister Cope's mission when she and her husband presided in the Missouri Independence Mission)."
Mason and Sister Cope
Emails from Sister Cope:
Date: Tue, Oct 12, 2010 at 6:59 PM
Subject: Your Elder Taylor!
Yes....I saw your Elder Taylor today and he looks good. So clean cut and full of the Spirit and happy. He wants to know when your birthdays are...I feel blessed to be here while he is here too. Our President Holzapfel is so full of energy and he wants to follow everything that Salt Lake is asking for our mission to do. You could let me know about your birthdays and I will give your missionary a call and tell him. Best Wishes....Sister Cope