This family is the whole reason that we went to Mexico. It wasn’t to enjoy the beaches, the sights, or the food, though those were a bonus. It was to take part in a ceremony that will influence their lives forever. I am so grateful that I was able to be a part of it. This day will be a lasting memory for years to come, and I will explain why.
I mentioned before that Kyle went on his mission for the LDS church to Mexico. He spent time in Merida, Cancun, Playa del Carmen, and Cozumel. It was in Cozumel that he came across this family. He taught them about what we believe, and over time, Claudia and her three children came to a realization that they wanted to become a part of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. However, Cesar did not come to the same realization for a few more years, with the help of his family and a loving sister missionary (pictured below), and was baptized.
In the LDS church, we believe that the family is an essential part of eternal happiness. Worthy members are able to go to the temple and be sealed to their spouse and family for eternity. This means that they are connected forever, in this life and after death. A temple sealing is a reason for much celebration and with this family, having come from a hard place in life, to being able to spend the rest of eternity together, we were extremely happy for them.
Our time at the temple was short, but we left feeling overjoyed (and a little overheated but that is for a different reason entirely – high heat and humidity). We had gotten into our hotel the night before around 2, and didn’t get to sleep until 3, so we were exhausted. As soon as we stepped into that air conditioned room, we both crashed on the bed. We woke up a couple hours later to a heavy rainstorm going on outside (in the photo below, taken from our hotel room, you can see the abundant rain and the top of the temple). We got ready to head out anyway, and by the time we had prepared for our outing, the rain had mostly stopped.
We went out into the rain trying to avoid puddles and getting splashed by cars in the streets, while heading to the market. We did a little shopping and found some fun trinkets but mostly just enjoyed the real side of Mexico. That side is not one that tourists usually see, but thanks to Kyle’s Spanish, and knowledge of the city, it was simple.
Near the end of the evening, as we were returning to our hotel, we stopped in the main square which contained the Governor’s Palace. It is no longer the home of the governor but serves as an office space, and a gallery of sorts. It was a beautiful open building that I particularly enjoyed looking through. Next to the palace was a large and stunning cathedral build in a Spanish architectural style. I found it interesting all the influences of the Spanish that were in this city. In some places it almost seemed European, but then you would walk a block or two and realize, no, you are in Mexico.
Night fell, and Kyle and I realized our exhaustion. But that didn’t stop us from taking a break from our walking at Dulceria y Sorbeteria for refreshing sorbet. As we sat an observed the people around us, we couldn’t help but smile. The day had come to a perfect ending.