Thursday, August 29, 2013
Dear Family and 1 friend,
Guess what?! I spoke in sacrament meeting yesterday. And no it was not in English, it was in Hungarian for like almost 15 minutes and no I didn't just read out of the scriptures the whole time (I only used 4 verses)! I was terrifed! Let me tell you. And you know how I do that think when I get nervous and speak really fast, yeah that isn't a good combination with a language I am not fluent in haha. All my cute little young women were smiling big at me and making hearts with their hands so everyone could definitely tell I was nervous. But everyone told me I was clever afterwards and that it was understandable so that's good. haha.
Ok so this week was good. It seems like I just emailed. What happened...
Imre! So we taught the Word of Wisdom this week, and he believes it is from God and all that wondeful stuff just didn't feel ready. So next time I mentioned that if he can quit smoking we can move his bap date up to October and he liked that. And then the next time after I decided we needed to give him a date to quit smoking, he didn't want one but the spirit said he needed one. So I through out this coming Wednesday and he said that he knew I was going to do that to him. He made silly but reasonable excuses and cleaning and wanted to get rid of the smell of smoke out of his apartment to make it easier and so then I said can we come clean? He looked surprised but we are going over this week with the branch president to help him clean his apartment on Wednesday. Mom, I am bringing some of the peanut butter you sent to share with him. And then on Thursday he won't smoke ever again. I have complete faith that he can do this. It is going to be so good. And the elders have an investigator right now who is coming up on 2 weeks of not smoking. Her and Imre will most likely get baptized on the same day.
Biro elnők, the branch president, reads the blog now too. Not a big deal. Loves it. He is an amazing branch president. Words can't really describe it until you experience it.
Ok so funny. So one of our investigators (this story can't have a name) told us that for the holiday he or she drank (unfortunately, but no worries we talked about repentence and it is all good now) a lot. But the funny part is, while they were drunk they were preaching about the gospel. Telling all their friends about the Book of Mormon and the church. riot.
We had some pretty good success tracting this week, which is fun. One of the guys we met with again and he was telling us about his son who was a stillborn. I asked him more about it and the umbilical cord choked him. I started crying in the lesson, which shocked me and I think him, but it was really good and we are meeting with him again. It is neat.
Ok so when I was with Sister O we had a program with a 15 year old girl and it was half English and half the gospel (which happens when you find people through English) and she told us she didn't believe in God any more because she went through a hard time and she felt like God didn't help. It broke our hears and we didn't really know what do say or do to help her. Sister O talked about the BoM and I shared my favorite scripture with her, Ether 12:6 and told her she was going through a trial of her faith right now. Sister Peterson and I met with her again this past week 2 months later because she has been summering and on vacation and she said that she kind of believes in God a little bit again that she read the scripture I had shared with her last time over and over again and said it helped so much and that is what helped her have faith again. I cried a little bit. I am getting to be an emotional missionary. It is a rough life a little bit in that sense. We are meeting again with her this week with one of the branch young women and I am so excited!
Love you all!
This is when Zsusi cooked us food last transfer. Pig Liver!
Pictures of Zsuzsi and I!
Anita and I at sportnap.
Sister O, Anita requested that I send this to you. haha
A Branch member, named Ercsi and I.
And my Hungarian residency card. Now I am legit
Saturday, August 24, 2013
Wednesday, August 21, 2013
This week was Szent István nap. He was a Hungarian King and I believe he was the king that made Hungary a Christain nation. It was a huge deal. The town shut down all weekend and had been preparing for the day. Tons and tons of festivities in the square. It kind of reminded me of big hat day a bit. only a little bit. There were huge fireworks and let me tell you Hungarians do not mess around with their fireworks. They take them very seriously. I called president on Monday and asked him if we could stay out a half and hour later so that we could watch them and he gave us permission so that was really neat. We also went fishing yesterday for the holiday since there are 2 rivers in Szolnok. Elder Loveday loves fishing and so we bought these bamboo fishing pools where we go grocery shopping for like a 1. Elder Smith caught a fish! the Senior couple. it was a riot. I was kind of over the whole fishing thing after about 45 mintues. I am sure no one is surprised by that. I don't have enough patience for those kind of things. It was so hot too. But no worries, I didn't get sunburned, I put on lots of sunscreen.
So I know why I came to Szolnok. It was because of these young women. I know I have said it before, but I just love them so much. I feel like I can connect with them the most because they are only 4-5 years younger than me. They are so wonderful and I love that they are know being coming friends with each other so that they can help strengthen one another. They are all so patient with me and the language and are always trying to help me. And 3 of them want to go on missions. How amazing is that!
On Sunday we had a program with Zsuzsi out on the grass under a tree by the branch house because that is where she wanted to go and she told me that she has already emailed her new bishop in Germany for the ward that she is moving into! How amazing is that? she isn't even a member yet! she is so great.
We went to choir and a Bérni and Valika went and Valika was so into the song that it brought tears to my eyes to she her this happy because when I first got to Szolnok she was so distraught and now she is just so happy and her husband will get baptized in about a month and a half.
Tomorrow we teach Imre the Word of Wisdom and he is a hardcore smoker. I've been able to help 2 people quite so far so hopefully this will go well. I think he is ready. We haven't felt like we should teach it before this week, but now we both feel that he is ready. I know that he can quite if he puts his faith in the Savior and his atonement. The branch is investing a lot of time into him already, which is awesome because he is going to have strong ties to the branch rather than the missionaries. The branch president has come to 5/6 of our last programs with him. Imre loves scriptures study and always asks the best questions. He was so prepared to learn about the law of chastity last week so I think the Word of Wisdom is going to go well too. There is a picture of Imre that I sent. We met his mom yesterday in the square, she was super nice and I want the missionaries to teach her in Gyer!
So Marika, who got baptized a few weeks ago. We went over there to help her paint a last week and we went and saw her yesterday. She hasn't been to church in the last few weeks and something that we have been focusing on as a companionship is church and getting our investigators and RCLAs there. She said she has been really tired but she has come to church before when she has been tired. And so we chatted more about it because that is something that we talked about doing as a companionship. I brought up the fact that she has come before when she has been tired and said that spiritually she felt really good afterward. It is really because someone told her she has to wear a skirt and she doesn't have one. I told her to just come in pants. haha. But the best part about that was she asked me who she needs to pay her tithing to. How tender is that!? We didn't even talk about tithing, we haven't retaught it yet she is just trying so hard. I love Marika so much. She was one of the ones who was able to quite smoking. It is amazing. I totally teared up and I told her I was crying and she started crying too. It was great.
We went to Szeged for Zone training last week and we did role plays with real Hungarians and I was with 2 elders (I don't know why because I would never be teaching with just 2 elders in real life). and we were talking and I get nervous to speak Hungarian around other missionaries, more than with Hungarians. And at the end, Pál was his name, asked me how long I have been here and I said May and he goes but you speak so well, so that made me feel really good. That was my moment of pride for the week. It is so funny because some people you talk to on the street say oh my goodness you speak so well and other say they can't understand you. whateves. haha.
Ok well I love you all and have a great week!
This is our adventure fishing. We went fishing not in the Tisza which is the bigger river but the Zagyva.
And the elders are sitting on a bench that says private property. It is a public bench and someone stuck that handwritten sign there randomly.
Here is a view of Szolnok from the Senior couple's apartment.
we played rugby for sportnap the other day. it was super funny.
Alexa and Valentine and I
the branch had a party for Szent Istvan nap and the had a palacsinta eatting contest but hungarian pancakes don't hold up on a string to well and so one of the members learned how to make American pancakes.
This is Imre. I have been talking about him in emails for probably the last month. He is awesome and is going to make such a strong priesthood holder.
so this one is interesting. one of the elders investigators (he used to be ours and we handed him over 2 months ago) drew this from a photo he took at Adri's baptism. He said that it took him 4 weeks. (A/N: I believe the original to this drawing can be found in this post.)
Monday, August 12, 2013
Monday, August 12, 2013Hello!
I hope everyone has been having a good hot summer week because that is what this week was. It was either 44 or 43 degrees the whole week, which 109 or 111 degrees plus humidity. It was rough. It is hard to work in the heat because there is no air conditioning so people do not want to meet because apartments are too hot. So no one wants to meet so we find, but when you find people do not want to stop and talk because it is too hot out. Rough life. We still had decent work this week though. The later part of the week picked up.
So yesterday at church, Laci told me he found my blog online. Ok. haha. He tries so translate it in Hungarian and so he read about the time when we went to his birthday party over 3 months ago. So I told him this week I would send home a picture of us so there will be one included. And then Zsuzsi goes oh yeah, I found it too and I look at the pictures. I don't think there have been any pictures of here though. I need to change that. Zsuzsi is so cool. We have the best programs with her because she really is studying the scriptures now. I just wish she would get baptized, but she has to get married first and her fiances doesn't want to get married anytime soon. Have I mentioned that she is moving to Germany in a month or so? She has already made sure she can meet with missionaries there. love it. Yesterday she asked if she could watch the next conference because she really enjoys reading the conference Liahonas. Golden.
Imre is doing so well. He mentioned that because of his work he doesn't know if he can come to church every week. Then we taught the 10 commandments and focused on the Sabbath day and he goes ok well I need to change somethings and at the end we were like will we see you at church on Sunday, and he goes of course it is a commandment! So good. It is so great to see him progress and just be ready and willing to hear the commandments. I know the spirit is telling us what to teach and when we should teach it! We are teaching the law of chastity this week!
So we have had lost of interesting characters in the heat. For our working hours last PDay we tabled the whole time and Elder Giacalone and I made a little competition to see who could stop the most bikes and get them to take pass along cards. I totally won. It was kinda of cool because I got a few numbers from that, one of which we are meeting today! And another we are meeting with later this week! But the characters have mostly been drunks this week, which is sad. Maybe this makes me very unchristlike, but I don't have a lot of tolerence for them. They just try and flirt with me and telll me I am pretty and won't leave. One Sister Peterson has taken on and is trying to get him to stop drinking. She tells him to stop drinking and so now he comes by the table everytime we are there. Rough...and he still drinks obviously.
We met a Dad and a son on Saturday and they told us to come over the next day so we did. Sometimes, I just pause and think this is not real life but it really is. So we took a 20 minutes bus ride out there and then a 15 minute walk from the bus stop and it turns out they just wanted handouts from the church but they listened very intently to our message. And the son was yelling to everyone that walked by come in we have americans here! wild. We were walking there and the dad goes did you tell someone you were coming here and I was like oh my gosh what are we getting into. So I quickly told Sister Peterson to text the elders what bus we took and what stop we got off at while I talk to him. I turns out it was probably because they wanted food, clothes, or money or something. wild.
ok well have a wonderful week!
This is Laci. We have been teaching him since I got to the country, and he was on bap date, but we are going to give him a little break now. He has lots of “signs” and recently wrote them all done and gave Bíro elnők 10 pages he had written down his signs to read. I think it has something to do with the fact that he really enjoys coming to seminary every week, and the 2 months that he was coming we were in Revelations. so yeah.
So there was a Relief Society activity this week where we made elderberry jam and I came with my hair looking like this and so 2 of the young women girls that were there were like do mine like yours so we had matching hair. This is Bérni and Alexa. Alexa is returning to activity! On Sunday she told me she loved me like 3 times. I almost cried :)
I sent you the picture of 3 of the yw and I. There are so close to my heart. Alexa, Adri, and Valentina. Only Bérni is missing from that picture.
Elder Giacalone and I get cokes every Pday when we go grocery shopping
Monday, August 5, 2013
Monday, August 5, 2013Dear Family,
A big Happy Birthday to Dad this week!!!
Szolnok is so different now without Sister O and Elder Miller. The branch feels way different too. Thankfully over investigators are still good, which is the most important part. We did have 1 drop us, Laci, the guy's birthday party we went to my first week in the country and he was on bap date. But it is no apparent that he was not meeting with us for the right reasons. We meet with him once with out Sister O, and he tried to give the BoM back but we got him to keep it. 2 nights later he called and Sister Peterson handed me the phone and said Laci wants to talk to you. Ok Laci I have been in the country for 3 months. I can't understand what you are saying to me. (ok a bit of an exaggeration) So we chat for like 10 minutes and very unlike Laci he lets me speak. He says he misses Sister O and I tell him how she is needed elsewhere for other people and how it is revelation from the Lord. You know transfers are a good thing for the missionaries in the sense that it filters out the investigators who are not serious about the gospel and only meet with us for the missionaries.
Sister Peterson is my new companion. She is from somewhere near Salt Lake. This is her 6th transfer and my 3rd. She is the baby of 6 kids. She loves to sing and play her ukalali (how do you spell that). She is good at singing and her mom is in MoTab. She has a boyfriend on a mission in Mexico right now and went to the University of Utah before her mission. She is my second companion who went to the U premish (sister Maxfield my MTC companion did as well).
So we had a meeting with the branch president Bíro elnők after church yesterday because he wanted to talk about our recent converts and the less actives we go visit. It was heartbreaking. I am so grateful to have served with him for this long and that he trusts me this much to ask to speak with us about them and what is going on and what he feels that we should do to help him. I am fortunate to serve in a branch where the branch leader is very involved and active in our work. Like for example tomorrow he is coming with us to see Hajni so he can play with the kids while we meet with Hajni alone to see what is up. Everyone is having WoW issues right now. And it is like breaking my heart a little bit because I know them and love them so much. I know they know what they need to be doing, they just aren't doing it. I just want to shake them and be like see the blessings?!?! Agency can be the worst sometimes, but I know it is a wonderful gift. Seriously the blessings are so apparent that come from the obedience but the adversary is so good at what he does.
Imre is so legit. I know I wrote home about him last week, but for real. He is so great. He is all about how this isn't something that he is just going to do for the next week or year but something that will be a part of his life for the rest of his life. I love it! He is so golden. I love it because I can just see how prepared he was for the gospel and is prepared. I have seen him progress so much and I want to stay in Szolnok forever so I can see him be baptized and see him receive the priesthood, go throw the temple. He is going to be such a strong priesthood holder and such a great strength to this branch.
Have a wonderful week!
Being a missionary is the best.
we tried a new method of tabling
This is where I live. The elders were meeting us so we could go street over to that super good ice cream place.
Just a great pictures of me making a phone call. Valentine wasn't at church so I was just calling her to see why. She was at her Grandmothers. We were tabling in the main square. I realized that a lot of the pictures I have sent home recently I am wearing that shirt. Ok I just really like it.
And here is the last pic of Sis O and I at the train station before we parted ways. She was such and amazing trainer we worked so hard, were very obedient and were blessed with a lot of success my first 2 transfers. I was very fortunate and blessed to be with her.
This is Daniel and I. He is a really cool guy and my first transfer we taught him a lot, and he was on bap date. He was our coolest investigator. It was really sad when he told us he wanted to take a break from meeting. Sister O and I were crying, he was crying too. just sad all around. We see him on the street a lot though. I got a picture with him this time. He is writing a book and said he will email it to me so he has my home email address.
This is the state of our bathroom right now. I mentioned that the are fixing it? We shower at the senior couples every morning.
Here is picture of me and my new comp.
The branch threw a small birthday/going away party for Sister O and Elder Miller. Hajni really wanted to take pictures. She has 3 children and we looove her children.
And we went to dinner for Elder Millers and Sister Os last night in Szolnok.