I was born in Sri Lanka and lived a very comfortable life. We were blessed with all the comforts of life. My father was in a very good job, but there was no peace in the country; there were riots between the people who spoke Sinhala and the people who spoke Tamil. My father decided to migrate to India to keep the family safe. We migrated to India in 1979, I was just ten years old, and my sisters were eight, six & five. We journeyed by ship. Soon after we left Sri Lanka, the house in which we lived, was burned by the Sinhalese within a short period. We are always grateful to the Lord for His tender mercy in protecting us by inspiring my father to move to India. He protected us, and nine years later, we also had the opportunity to listen to the missionaries and accept the Gospel, which would have not happened if we lived in Sri Lanka.
My Acceptance of the Gospel:
When I was 19 years old, my family had the blessing of listening to the missionary discussion. When I saw the Book of Mormon that my music teacher Bastian Alexander carried with him while teaching me music. I became very curious to know what the Book was about. When I opened the Book, I saw the books Nephi, Jacob and so on; I got confused about how my music teacher believed in totally a different bible, and it could be a complete wrong doctrine. He brought the missionaries to answer my questions. My father and three younger sisters joined me to listen to the missionary discussion. I started listening to the missionaries with a strong opinion in my mind that they were wrong. Though I was 19 years old, I was well taught about the old and new Testaments by my previous faith that I belonged. I feel bad about how I gave a hard time to the missionaries, asking questions, but the discussions went on well for a few days.
One day the missionaries were teaching me, why Jesus Christ was baptized from the Book of Mormon, “And now, if the Lamb of God, He being holy, should have need to be baptized by water, to fulfil all righteousness.....But not withstanding He being holy, He showeth unto the children of men that, according to the flesh He humbleth himself before the father, and witnesseth unto the Father that He would be obedient unto him in keeping his commandments.”1 This scripture touched my heart. The bible teaches us about the baptism of Jesus Christ, but it never explains why He got baptized. I realized that the words in the Book of Mormon are very valuable, true and important. I also realized how important it is for me to get baptized as a sinner, when Jesus Christ being holy, got baptized to show his obedience to Heavenly Father. This is how I accepted the Gospel of Jesus Christ in my life. We got baptized (except my mother) on February 4, 1990, later my mother joined the church when I was serving my mission in 1993.
I had the opportunity to serve a mission in 1993 - 1994 in India Bangalore Mission, which I consider to be the greatest opportunity and blessing in my life to serve my brothers and sisters and share the Gospel that I have been blessed with. I served in Bangalore, Rajahmundry and Erode with wonderful daughters of God. I was able to share the gospel with all those whom I
met, with faith and boldness and with the help of the Lord. I witnessed many miracles during my mission, by being an instrument in the hands of the Lord, to carry the message into the hearts of the people with whom I shared the Gospel. The Holy Ghost was always with me, inspiring me on what to say and what to do. Loving Heavenly Father miraculously guided me towards many individuals on our way and into the houses of many faithful children of God who were prepared to listen to our message. All those who listened to us with humility, were touched by the spirit and got baptized. As sisters, we faced lots of trials and unsafe situations. The Lord was with us, guiding and protecting us miraculously.
Everyone wondered the safety of sister missionaries in India. Even I had that fear, but soon that fear was overshadowed by faith, courage and protection from Heaven. The Lord’s work will go forth no matter what happens. I have a strong testimony of the revelation received by prophet Joseph Smith in 1842, and he prophesied: “The Standard of Truth has been erected; no unhallowed hand can stop the work from progressing; persecutions may rage, mobs may combine, armies may assemble, calumny may defame, but the truth of God will go forth boldly, nobly, and independent, till it has penetrated every continent, visited every clime, swept every country, and sounded in every ear, till the purposes of God shall be accomplished, and the Great Jehovah shall say the work is done.”2
1 2 Nephi 31: 5-7
2 Teachings of Presidents of the Church: Joseph Smith, “The Wentworth Letter, chapter 38.”