Monday, May 26, 2014
How are you all? I love getting all your emails and I’m sorry I never have time to respond to you all – just know that I will do my best to respond when I can and that I LOVE you all for emailing me. It really means the world. 🙂
So this week…. I can’t even remember what happened so let’s go day by day.
Tuesday: We left super early to catch a train to Buc for our Zone Training Meeting. Our zone met at the chapel in Panduri. It was fun to see other missionaries. Elder Dronyk from my MTC district was there and it was great to see him. Sora Newell and I gave a presentation for 20 minutes about Christlike attributes which was fun to do. We had the rest of the day in Buc before our train left that evening. I was able to get mail (Thanks Mom! 🙂 ) and stop by the office for a bit with some other missionaries. We tried to do some shopping afterwards but I got bored, haha, so we left and caught our train back to Pitesti.
Wednesday: We had lessons up in Campulung which are always fun. I love meeting with the recent converts up there. They have such incredible faith and enthusiasm. We’re doing our best to help them more fully understand the way the church works now which is kind of difficult, especially because so much is different here in Romania. But they are so willing and want to do all they can to be better. Our STL’s [sister training leaders] came down from Buc that night and we had dinner together (We made homemade mac & cheese! It was fantastic.) and then talked about what we were going to do the next day, and then talked about boys and did our nails. We’re still girls, even out here on missions. 🙂
Thursday: Exchanges! Thursday was awesome. I was on an exchange with Sora Case and Sora Newell worked with Sora Wright. We did our studies in these companionships and Sora Case really helped me get some good language principles down, which was helpful. We had lunch at a Chinese restaurant we found in Centru! It was good, especially cause it’s so rare to find Chinese here in Romania. Then we went contacting! We just started talking to people. I loved it. I had no idea what was being said but I would say stuff when Sora Case looked at me, haha. Some people thought I was mute and others could tell I just didn’t know how to speak Romanian yet. They’re super patient with me, though, which is awesome. We had this survey that we would ask people if they would do and then we would ask them questions. As they answered we would teach and testify about what the question had asked. It was a cool way to contact and most people were willing to stop and participate/talk with us. We found several people who said they were interested in talking with us more. We handed out a Book of Mormon and one man even said he would like to come to church! So that was exciting! All in all it was a great day and I set a lot of new goals for myself that I’m excited to work on and fulfill.
Friday: Friday was weekly planning day! These days are hard for me because I want to be out working! But I guess weekly planning is work, just a different kind of work. Here’s a President Hill-ism for you all: “I don’t want to you weakly plan; I want you to strongly plan!” Haha, he’s too great. During my planning/before bed I was reading the talk “His Grace is Sufficient” again by Brad Wilcox. I love this talk. I feel like I find something new every time I read it. I cry every time I read it because I cannot comprehend how I am so blessed to have my Savior. The Atonement is such a wonderful and important gift. I hope that we all use it daily to become more like Christ, for that is how we can truly show Him that we love Him. And if you haven’t read this talk, GO READ IT RIGHT NOW. You will have such a different perspective on the grace of the Savior, and hopefully a renewed strength. 🙂
Saturday: Sora Newell and I decided to walk all over Pitesti and do contacting. We literally walked all. over. Pitesti. Our goal was to know more of the city so that we can contact places we haven’t gone before and not just stick to the same places. We explored and as we did, we did major English contacting, passing out cards with the information of our class on them and telling people about the class. Most people were happy and took our cards and the ones that weren’t, well, they’re missing out on actually hearing me speak! Ha, all joking aside, it was a great day! We got TAN LINES. That’s when you know you’re doing it right. Sora Newell has the best ones on her feet. I’ll send pictures next week cause I forgot the card reader that I have at home.
Sunday: We had District Conference! It was wonderful. Our little chapel was full! We also had all of our recent converts there which we weren’t expecting because they told us they had to work. I was so incredibly happy. My little friend, little Alexandra, was there and she sat by me for all of Sacrament meeting and colored in my notebook. She’s darling. We had a lesson with all of them before Sacrament about Fasting, which went well. President and Sora Hill were there from Buc and also President Doru and his wife Anna-Maria. It was so great to see the Hills!! They are wonderful and were worried about us and asked how we were doing and if we were ok. I love how much they care about us all. During Sacrament meeting, at the very end President Hill spoke and had President Doru translate for him. It was so wonderful to hear part of Sacrament in English. I didn’t realize how much I had missed that. Sacrament meeting can be hard for me because I really don’t understand much of what anyone says. But I can feel the Spirit that is there which is what really counts. We had a shorter Sunday School and then Relief Society. Again, I didn’t understand much but then at the end Sora Hill spoke and had a member here translate for her and it was great. Then President Doru’s wife bore her testimony and was quite emotional. The Spirit was so strong as this wonderful woman testified to us that she knew that Christ lives and that He is our Savior. She testified of the blessings that she has seen in her family’s life because of the Gospel and of how much she loved Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ. It was beautiful. Sora Newell and I went home after correlation with the Branch Mission Leader and finally made ourselves some food. That night we listened to a bunch of the Conference talks that Dad put on my iPod. I love listening to these men and women. We listened to Elder Bednar’s talk, Elder Oak’s, Elder Holland’s, President Uchtdorf’s and a few others. Then we had them playing as we went to bed. Ha, we woke up at 3 in the morning and they were still playing.
Monday: Today has been great! We got up at 5:30 to go to Curtea de Argeș, which is this town in the countryside that has this incredibly old and beautiful monastery. This town kind of reminded me of the Romanian equivalent of Park City or something. It was nice and because it was early in the morning, it wasn’t hot yet. There was this wonderful breeze and I just loved being outside in this beautiful town. The monastery was stunning inside! I have never seen anything like it. There were ornate paintings and decorations everywhere. I came away and, while I loved the monastery, was grateful for the reverent simplicity of our chapels and temples. Everything in our Church is centered on Christ. It was interesting to notice that the depictions of the different Saints in this monastery were larger than any of the paintings of Christ. I am grateful that we recognize who is most important, our Savior and Redeemer, Jesus Christ. After that, the Elders really really wanted a shawarma, even though it was like 9:30 in the morning, so they went to get those while Sora Newell and I went to a little restaurant and had brunch there. Guys, I think I am eating too much chocolate and too many crepes. I had an omelette and then crepes for breakfast today. But ya know, I don’t even feel badly about it. In fact, it might just be the best thing ever. Dad, you should step up your crepes and add ICE CREAM next time. Just sayin’. And no, it is never ever too early for ice cream. True fact ☺. The rest of the day has been quite routine, doing some shopping, emailing, etc. I love talking to all of you! It’s the best part of my day :).
Thank you for everything! I love reading your emails and hearing about everyone!! You are constantly in my prayers and I think of you all often! Go read General Conference talks. They are scripture and it’s SO SO important for us to read them. We will be judged according to the words which we have, which include the GC talks. 🙂
Stay classy 🙂