Sunday, December 21, 2014

November 24, 2014

Our bishop lives right by the temple in
Friedrichsdorf, so we took a nice little walk :) 
Troy!  That is so awesome that you were accepted into medical school.  I am definitely excited for you.  How long will you be in Provo before you move out to go to school?  Are we going to see each other at all?  Taryn, Mom, and Dad, I hope that you all have a wonderful Thanksgiving Break together.  That’s going to be fun.  Eat lots of food for me.  You know what’s funny?  I'm serving in a ward full of Americans, and yet no Thanksgiving meal for me.  But the missionaries are all making a meal tomorrow after Zone Training, so it will be fun.  Nothing like last year though.  Thanksgiving with the Asians!  That was fun.  Dad, I do get your pictures, just so you know.

I saw Munster on the poster
and got really excited!
Well, this week, something happened in the past day or two and things are starting to turn around, and I am really grateful dafür.  This week, well, every single one of our appointments fell out.  Every one.  Until Saturday, we didn’t teach one person.  Even our street display fell out on Tuesday because of the rain!  How ridiculous is that?  So by the time Wednesday came around, I was more than excited to go on my split.  It was still in Frankfurt, but with the German Sisters.  And it was so great being able to speak German again.  Oh how I've missed it.  But that ended up being a super crazy day because about half way through, we got a call from the Darmstadt Sisters.  One of them was super sick, but they had an appointment that night with an investigator, where, if they didn’t meet, she wouldn’t be baptized on her scheduled date.  So, we got to go on what I like to call, Splitception.  We rushed down to Darmstadt, where I got to go teach their investigator with Sister Fuller while Sister Clendon stayed in the “sicky” apartment.  Yay.  This lady was really cool, and it was so great to just be able to teach her and be taught from her.  Her sister is a member, and she has been going to the church for the past 5 months, and knows and believes everything already.  The lessons are more of a mandatory thing than a necessary one.  So we were teaching the gospel of Jesus Christ and it was more of her teaching us.  She has such a sweet spirit, and you can just tell how excited she was to be baptized.  It was a great appointment.

Our cool street display 
The next day, we had a street display, and since our appointment fell out, we were there for the full four hours—ha-ha.  Out in the freezing cold.  But it was okay, because it was a cool street display.  We got this massive TV and set it out on a table and played Mormon messages and Bible videos on it, and people would stop to watch them.  My favorites were the people standing far away, not wanting to admit they were watching it, but you could just tell they were.  Well, after 3 hours and 50 minutes, we finally had a discussion with a guy that got somewhere.  He was from Ethiopia and wanted to know why we claimed to be the only true church.  So we got his number.  Ten minutes to go, and we got a number!  Success. 

But Saturday made this long week completely worth it.  Saturday was a miracle day.  The elders had a baptism for this man named Eric.  He is the coolest person I have ever met.  He is from Ghana, and just loves the gospel so much, and was so excited to be baptized.  He just couldn’t stop smiling the entire time.  It was a nice reminder that there are people out there just waiting for us to come and find them.  After the baptism, the bishop and his wife invited us over for lunch, and we had a nice lesson with them.  Bishop Chaves gave us some direction of what he wants us to do, and that he wants us to really work with the members.  Well, after that appointment, we went and visited a few members that live in the area.  One of them is the Pelucchi family, who are just awesome.  They are from Italy and lived in France for a really long time.  They have only been here for a few months.  We had a really great lesson on the importance of the family, and at the end, asked them if we could help them in any way.  She asked us to tell her why we decided to serve a mission.  That question made me really think, and remember the reason why I decided to come out here.  It was needed.  I feel like at some points of the mission, you just start going through the motions, trying to fill up the days, but forget the over-arching reason why.  Well, that kind of set me back on track, which is that I am here to help others find the joy that I have. 

That night, though, was when the miracle happened.  Do you remember a few weeks ago, that I told you about that part-member, inactive family from the Dominican Republic?  Well, we finally got ahold of them and made an appointment for that night.  We got a new ward mission leader this week, Adrian Rodriguez.  He is originally from Spain, and asked to come with us for the appointment.  He is awesome.  He got back from his mission in England a few years ago, and was a teacher at the England MTC, so he is just pumped about missionary work.  We ended up teaching Victor the Restoration, and it was clear that Adrian kind of forgot that he wasn’t a missionary—ha-ha.  It was great.  Victor was able to relate so much to Joseph Smith and really added in a ton of input, and wasn’t afraid to ask questions.  We taught them in Spanish and it was really quick Spanish, so I didn’t really understand a ton, but I was able to catch enough and teach enough to know that the Spirit was in the room, testifying to Victor of everything we were saying.  At the end, Adrian asked Victor if he would be baptized when he knew that this church was true.  He said yes.  I asked him if he would prepare himself to be baptized on Dec.  20th, and he said yes.  It was amazing.  His wife just looked at him and…it was like, “Then we can be an eternal family!” She is so big on families and how the church raises them right, and it was just cool to see her excitement.  They have the cutest two-year-old daughter too.  Also, he came to church yesterday, and so that was really exciting.  We went and picked them up, and he got to meet a few of the other Spanish-speaking members, so we are headed in the right direction!  We are going back on Wednesday with the Relief Society president, who is from Spain, so it is going to be perfect.  I am really excited.  I feel extremely blessed to get to work with them.  Just goes to show, there’s always blessings after hardships. 

My companion was so excited
to get out of Frankfurt and
have an appointment--haha
Also, this week is already looking up.  We have quite a few member appointments, and had another miracle at church yesterday.  One of the young women came up to us and introduced herself.  Her family has been inactive lately, but she is bringing them all back.  They are from Portugal, but have lived in Spain for a while.  And she told us that she had talked to her friend about her church and that her friend loves it so much that she wants to meet with us and be baptized.  I am still in shock about that one.  Sounds too good to be true!  But she said she was going to call her friend after church, and we are suppose to call her at 3 pm today to see when we can all meet.  So pray that this really is golden!  To make it even better, the friend is from Spain.  I guess I am here to teach Spanish people.  Looks like I need to change my focus of language study.  Sorry, Sister Sorensen. 

But I am hopeful for this week.  I can sense that things are changing.  Blessing are coming, and I am extremely grateful, because it’s really tiring going through day to day, feeling like you are making absolutely no difference.  And I have felt like a failure of a trainer to Sister Sorensen, having no teaching opportunities at all.  But I need to count my blessings, and more and more will come.  In the past day or two, we have seen blessing out of the wall.  So, thank you Heavenly Father. 

Thank you for all of your prayers.  Things are looking up here, but we are still trying our hardest to find people that are looking for our message, and want to listen and learn.  We continue to give our best. 

I love you all so much!  I hope that you have a wonderful Thanksgiving break, and eat lots of good food for me. 

Talk to you all next week.


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