Monday, December 12, 2011

12 December 2011 Letter (Szekesfehervar)

Dear family,
Monday, 5 December
Healed at last!  We went emailing this morning, and tried to go to the castle afterwards, but couldn't get the bike fixed in time.  So, we went looking at game shops for stuff to do during the Super P-Days in three weeks.  I copies pictures onto some CD's in-case something happens when I send my package home.  Last of all, Elder Molnar and I met with M, a member.  He speaks good English and seems like a good member, but hasn't been to church in a while.  My miracles were feeling better and the CD's.

Tuesday, 6 December
Today we met with K and F, both of whom are very good investigators.  Both pray, ready, and said they will come to Sacrament Meeting.  In other news, a bird pooped on my head while we were streeting.  Also, we saw a group of ten school girls trying to take pictures.  We offered to take them for them so they could all be in the pictures.  While talking to them, we learned that they all spoke English, and none of them knew any Hungarian.  They were here studying for a semester, but were actually from Russia, Ukraine, Poland, Kazakhstan, Portugal, and Bolivia.  They were really nice and open and two of them took Pass-Along Cards so they could visit  It will be cool if any of them ever meet with the missionaries again.  My miracle today was managing to finally send off my Christmas packages.  Hopefully they arrive home safely.

Wednesday, 7 December
Today had a lot of potential, but not a lot happened.  We had five lessons scheduled; all but one (who was a member) dogged, so we did some streeting and got my bike repaired.  During Csaladi Est (Family Night), we all wrote testimonies in a dozen Books of Mormon, followed by practicing a new song to sing in Sacrament Meeting.  My miracle is that today was my 100th Day in the country.  It feels so fast.  Yay timewarps!

Thursday, 8 December
Today was a good day.  We met with J and got her to commit to coming to church for the first time in a couple months.  We also met with R and Mt.  Both lessons went well.  V came to R's lesson with us and was a huge help.  I'm pretty sure he did as much as Elder Molnar and I put together and almost doubled.  We had two programs dog us...oh well.

Friday, 9 December
Today Elder Molnar and I tracted for 4 hours.  We managed to get two phone numbers, but not much else.  However, the evening was the interesting highlight for tonight.  We had Gyuli Buli (a small ward party every Friday, similar to Family Night).  R and her friend N had said they were coming, so we tried to put some more thought into the activity.  I had the idea to play Nephites and Lamanites, a game (a sort of sock-war/capture the flag) that I had only played once while on a Fathers and Sons camp-out with Uncle Mike's ward about 8 years ago.  We used stacks of chairs, leaned up tables, moved around the ping-pong table and the white boards to create obstacles and things to hide behind in each room.  Although only two members came (less than usual), we still had enough to play 4 vs. 4 and it turned out really well.  The two investigators missed their bus, so we stayed, played ping-pong, talked, and watched Mormon Messages until their next bus came two hours later.  Hopefully the 4 1/2 hour Gyuli Buli helps them move towards the idea of the church.  I'm glad that my idea worked and everyone else said it was a success.  The Gyuli Buli was my miracle today.

Saturday, 10 December
Where to begin today...This morning we skipped our studies so that we could bike an hour and a half to a less active (probably inactive) family.  When we arrived, they were there, but said two of their three children were sick, and they also didn't want to get us sick.  (By the way, we had tried calling, but the only phone number anyone had for them was way out-dated and didn't work).  So, we got their current number and said we would come back another time.  We then had a woman call us saying that she was an old investigator, had met with missionaries in the past, received their help, and now needed our help.  She said she had 10,000 Forint stolen and the police had refused to help her, then she asked us for a couple thousand to help her.  Elder Molnar told her that we didn't have any money to give her, but that we could meet, talk, and see what we could do to help...When the time came two hours later, she didn't show up.  Tonight we had our last Angolora for the year, which went well.  Afterwards we met with L.  My miracle of the day was that L brought his son, B.  The two of them committed to come to church tomorrow and to read from the Book of Mormon for ten minutes every day.  When we asked him, L also replied that if he gains a testimony that the church is right, which he hopes it is, then he will be baptized.  Last, but no least, I finished reading "True to the Faith" and have begun studying "The Teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith".  It's a big book. 
P.S.  M's baptism had been schedule for today when I left Nyiregyhaza, but she leaves for Germany tomorrow morning.  So, her baptism is currently scheduled for January 7th, a month away.

Sunday, 11 December
Today three things happened.  The first was that we had our first palacsintas since I came here. (As a side note:  We have not had a single meal appointment since I've been here...quite different from Nyiregyhaza).  Second, we taught P on the Restoration and Priesthood.  He's not one that we can meet with often.  Last, an my miracle, was that we had invited five investigators to attend Sacrament Meeting, and three of them showed up.  L came for Sacrament Meeting for the second time, and R and N came for both hours of church.  The members were very good about it.  They were excited and many of them talked to and welcomed our investigators.  All three of them said they enjoyed it.  J also came for the first time in several months.  Yay for progress!

That's about it for this week.  Despite having eleven lessons fall through, dog, or cancel, this week went better than last.  (If the lessons hadn't cancelled, we would've easily made 'Super-Standard' and would've had one of the 3 best weeks out of the entire mission).  Anyways, Christmas is only in two weeks.  Europe is a fun place to be for the holidays.  They really like to celebrate and party in the Belvaros (Town Square).  We didn't make it to the castle last week, so we're trying again today.  Also, I almost have "Come Thou Fount" memorized on the piano.  That's it for me this week.


Shipp Elder

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