I was a drug addict who recently converted to the beautiful gospel a year ago. I spent thirty years in the darkness. I never knew that I could be forgiven for my past, but I have, and the blessings have been enormous and so life changing. My baptism went to the First Presidency, and within three days of that I was granted the joy of being baptized. The gospel has flipped my life, and enriched my soul, and given me many blessings. This world needs to know the power and joy of the mighty Book of Mormon.
It’s absolutely amazing how Heavenly Father has blessed my kids and I. Whenever I share my testimony the Spirit is so present. I share it to strengthen others, which it does.
The Book of Mormon changed our entire life. I had been gang affiliated and a drug and alcohol addict for nearly thirty years, and also struggled to read my entire life. In 2015 around April my best friend for over twenty-five years, who is also in the Stake Presidency in Australia suggested that The Book of Mormon would help my life and the life of my kids, as I’d had enough of the only life I had known. He told me to stop the missionaries the next time I saw them, and ask for The Book of Mormon. I said to him “Bro, I can’t read. Why do I need the book?” He said “Trust me bro.” So, I did. The next day the missionaries walked past, I yelled out “Hey! Can I have a Mormon book?” They smiled and said “The Book of Mormon.” I replied “Yeah.” So, I got one of them. They asked if I wanted them to talk to me. I said “Nah man. I’m just trusting my mate who asked me to stop yous and get one.” (At this stage I was a very hateful person who wasn’t approachable by any means. Tattooed all over.) That night I tried reading. I tried and tried. I started hating on myself because I felt useless and embarrassed. I’d try every night for a week. It got to the stage where I just wanted to throw it away, but a little voice in my head said Try again tonight. So, I did. That time was no different except I started to cry. (I’d never cried in my life, as it was considered a soft thing in my world.) My son and daughter heard me sobbing. My son yelled out “Are you okay Dad?” I replied “Yeah, my boy. I’m just not feeling good.” He knew that I’d been trying for days to read. He then yelled out “Dad, just keep trying please.” I said “Okay, I’ll keep trying son.” But, still I couldn’t even sound out one word. Three to four weeks passed.
We went to church for a couple of weeks. We decided to get baptized. The missionaries asked if I wanted to fast for my baptism, so we did. (As I’d done some horrifying things in my life and there was horrific things done to me in my life also.) The next day was Sunday. After Sacrament the Mission President came unexpectedly. He wanted to meet the “golden investigators.” (My kid and I.) We sat down and he interviewed me for my baptism. I revealed my life’s story without holding back. We both were in tears. He said my baptism had to be approved from the First Presidency. I understood. My kids were getting baptized the following Sabbath. Three days later he rang me and said the First Presidency has approved my baptism, on one condition: that I’d never explain in detail the things I’d done. So, the next Sabbath I was to be baptized with my kids.
My best friend with two days notice arrived in New Zealand to baptize us. He laid me down in the water and I came up screaming! Roaring like a mad beast! He said to me “Bro, your knee didn’t go under. I have to do it again.” I said to him “Please bro, wash my past away.” He laid me down and I came up reborn with tears flowing out like water.
Being a Sabbath, we were able to be confirmed an hour later, before Sacrament. I sat on the seat to be confirmed and my bro said to me “Brother. What do you really want now?” I said without hesitation “I wanna read The Book of Mormon bro.” He laid his hands on my head… Moments later he confirmed my kids.
He sat next to me and said “I love you brother” with tears of joy. We went to sing a hymn. I looked at him and before I said anything he said to me “Heavenly Father loves you so much. He’s blessed you.” I said “Brother, I can read these words.” He said “I know you can now.” (He asked Heavenly Father to bless me to be able to read while he was confirming me.)
I sang my heart out! My kids looked at me and began to cry hearing me sing.
The Book of Mormon saved my kids and my life. The Spirit that was present was so overwhelming to all the branch members. Tears rolling down out of everyone who witnessed the blessing.
I love our Heavenly Father with all I have. I’m so so grateful for Jesus Christ, our Savior. Through Him I was forgiven. I’m so grateful to our loving, living prophet, President Monson. And, I’m so very proud to be a Mormon. I share parts of my testimony in Jesus Christ’s name. Amen
~ Pita Allen ~