How are you? What is new??
I have had an eventful week for sure! First: Last P-day we went to Karosta! It is right on the beach and they have a bunch of Russian war forts that are falling away into the Ocean. Man, it was super fun. We went with the Elders and S. from our ward. We climbed all through the old forts and looked for sea glass. (Tons of it!) We got some good pictures so I’ll try to send some today. We had a great time. Look it up on the internet. I don’t know if they will have much but who knows. It was a fun activity for the afternoon.
We’ve been having some problems with a man here that has left the church and he is trying to take everyone with him. He has gotten to a couple of the men in our ward and we’re trying our best to fight against Satan and his ways of destroying people’s faith. It’s really sad. We need Priesthood holders. We HAVE to have priesthood holders to run the church here and this man is giving them all anti Mormon stuff and filling their heads with lies. We can’t afford to loose any of the priesthood because we already don’t have very many. We did have a little miracle though… L. an older man that has been talking to the anti-Mormon has been our priority this week. But he doesn’t have a phone and we aren’t allowed to go to his apartment because Lutherans live there and they are very against the church.
So we really just hoped to run into him or else we’d have to take off our badges and go to his house just to see if we could set up a meeting. Well we went out contacting one morning and we were walking home when we saw him walking through the park! We were so excited and we raaaan over to him. We talked for a while, and man, he has a billion concerns and false ideas and he’s loosing his faith. We are trying our best to “run into” him everyday at the park because he walks through almost every morning. He’s not the easiest to set a meeting up with. But we were thankful that we could run into him and get the chance to talk with him for a bit.
We found another less-active member in the apartment building of K. our investigator! He was drunk when we knocked on his door, but we met up a meeting for next week to talk to him. Hopefully we can help him change his life back around. We’re still teaching private English lessons to the students of our English class and teaching the Restoration as the spiritual thought afterwards. We haven’t had any commit to meeting with us again, but it’s been fun and like we’ve been told, we’re just planting the seeds for the next missionaries when they don’t want to learn more at this time. We just need to find those that were planted by past missionaries and ready now! 🙂
We started youth sports night! Our goal is to have the youth, S. and I. (both age 17) bring their friends. We played Floor-ball last week, which is like hockey except not on ice. Man, it was so fun! We had such a good time and I’m obsessed with that game. Love it! We were all way sore the next day. haha Even though we run everyday and work out I guess playing an “intense sport” worked muscles we weren’t used too. We just thought it was so funny we were so sore from an hour of floor-ball.
We had District Conference where all the members of Latvia who could make it to Riga gathered together to hear the District presidency speak along with Elder Senkans (who translated the Book of Mormon into Latvian–how awesome is that? I feel so grateful I got to meet and speak with the man who translated the Book of Mormon in my mission language!), and Elder Bennett and his wife. It was so fun to see all the members gathered together to hear leaders encourage and uplift and teach them. The Zone leaders asked sister Lindstrom and I to sing with them “Come thou Fount” for the meeting. It is such a beautiful song and I was thankful for the opportunity to sing.
We were able to have dinner at the Bailey’s house along with 6 other missionaries. The Baileys are a Family from Las Vegas. Brother Bailey works in the foreign service and they have lived in Latvia for 2 years and are moving to the Philippians next week after a trip home to the USA. They have been SO amazing and helped the branch so much in Riga. I wish I could have gotten to know them a little better, but the times I have met them they have just been so amazing. I do not envy that they have to leave Latvia though. It made me think about when we moved home from Austria and how hard it was to leave for our family and all the tears that were shed. It’s a bittersweet moment I think.
We had Mission Conference the next day where all the missionaries in the Baltic met together in the Inmanta chapel! It was such a blast! SO fun to see the Lithuanian Elders I was in the MTC with and to meet a bunch of other missionaries. And I saw Sister Robinson who was my visiting teacher in my ward at BYU. She is serving in Estonia. How fun! We had such a blast talking and meeting people afterwards and were sad when we had to say goodbyes until next mission conference in a year.
BUT the presiding Bishop of the church, Bishop Stevenson, spoke to us along with our Mission President and the Bennetts. It was amazing. Bishop Stevenson is such an amazing man. It was wonderful to shake his hand and feel of his testimony. I learned so much. The focus was really about consecrating your mission and giving your whole mind, might, heard, and strength, as it says in D&C 4. That has been something I have been working on so it was neat when that was the theme of our mission conference as it was very relevant to what I am working on. It is a life-time process to give everything to the Lord, but as a missionary we have this unique time to really give our whole selves to Him. It’s not always easy to do so, but I’m working on it.
A trustworthy servant of the Lord; that is my theme for my mission. I decided on it in the MTC. I want to be a trustworthy servant. I want him to know that no matter where I am or what I’m doing I will be willing to do whatever he asks, whenever he asks. And do it with a smile. 🙂 Of course, listening to the spirit is key in doing this. So that’s where to start. It’s still a work in progress, but I’m doing my best to give everything so that I truly can be a trustworthy servant and the Lord will know that he can trust ME to do what he asks. It reminds me of one of my favorite scriptures Helaman 10:4-5. It says that Nephi worked with “unwearyingness” and did not fear the people. He did not fear anything and always gave everything and by doing so the Lord made him mighty in word. Giving everything also means working my hardest and knowing at the end of the day when I lay down exhausted that I did everything that was asked of me.
I have been experiencing a lot of self-discoveries these past couple weeks. I have learned so much just about myself and who I really am. Things I need to change, and things that I need to work on. That is one huge blessing from a mission I think. I can just see all of the things the Lord wants to change about me to help me be the best I can be. And after every lesson I can see the results of why I learned it. It’s actually quite fun to find the lessons in everything and if I am different after than I was before. It’s like a game to try and figure out what I am supposed to learn and then find out what I can do to learn how.
We have set aside at least one hour every day to go contacting. We usually get several in, but we really need to find new investigators. We have some good lessons set up for this week so I am excited about that. I can’t believe that I am half way through my second transfer. Nuts! Sister Lindstrom goes home in a couple weeks and it’s really weird to hear about going home and she needs to do this and that before she leaves. Makes me grateful I still have lots of time to keep on doing my best to become who God wants me to be so that I can find those people who are searching for the truth.
Over all it was a fun week! Today we are going to the War museum in Karosta! We’re all super excited because it’s closed on Monday and since we had mission conference we have P-day on Tuesday and so it will be the only time we could ever go and see it! Score! We have a busy next couple of weeks! Hurray! Busy is good. Thank you all for your letters! Dad, I got your birthday card! Thank you a ton! 🙂 And tell Michael I got his letter and his package and thank you SOO much for them!
I love you with all of my heart and pray for you all fervently every night!!! Have a wonderful week!!