Monday, September 19, 2011

Week of September 19 from Dresden

Hey ihr,

Well another week is here and gone in Dresden and i find myself sitting in front of the computer yet again. Where is the time going? This week was probably one of the craziest of my mission, and most rewarding for sure!

I dont know where exactly to start, so i´ll start with probably the highlight i suppose... So, Wednesday, aka my first day as a non-teenager, was probably one of the top 5 days of my life. For my birthday i really only had one thing i wanted, and that was to see the Joseph A Ott grave in the St Pauli Friedhoff here in Dresden. So we headed out early in the morning to the grave to see it before we had to catch our train to Freiberg for the Temple. As we got there, i noticed that the cemetary was gimungous, and that it probably would have been a good idea to at least have somewhat of an idea where the grave actually was haha. I started franticly searching through the graveyard for his grave, but to no avail. We only had a couple minutes before i had to go, so i finally resorted to a very humble and sincere prayer. As i ran through the old cemetary, i saw a really tall white tombstone, and instantly knew i it was him... and it was. I fell on my knees in front of the tombstone and offered a simple prayer of gratitude, for many more things than the mere fact i had found the grave, and felt that quiet, calm, rejuvinating role of the Spirit come over for me just for that brief moment. It was a great start to a great day! Afterwards, we headed down to Freiberg where we did a temple session, and i guess it was Czech day haha so everything was in Czech. I dont know why that was necessary, because after talking with the Czech members afterwards they could all speak perfect english and german, but whatevs haha, i guess it´s always better in your mother language.:) I went through in german though, and it was amazing. Such a small, simple, beautiful temple.:) Afterwards when we got home, we put someone on baptismal date, then found a way cool american investigator, and ate at KFC, followed by a crépe night with glow sticks... truly unforgetable.:)

  Aside from that, we had a TON of success this week. This sunday, i had to leave the gospel principles class because we had too many investigators there and there werent enough seats haha, but that´s a welcome problem.:) I also had 2 way cool people come back to church after a long absence, so that was pretty epic as well. We put 2 more people on baptismal date this week, so we´ve got 4 we´re working with now, and there´s more to come. It´s just been awesome to see the spirit of missionary work flame forward in the city, and we´re super excited for what the future brings. We had some way spiritual lessons this week, one of which was probably one of the best of my mission. It was with a man about 55 years old, alcoholic, and has smoked since he was a teenager, and is just a super rough guy. We felt as we were teaching that he has a strong relationship to his family, especially his grandparents. As we talked about how the Plan involves us being together in Heaven forever he shed his thick skin and broke down in front of us... he had had a very very rough past, and he asked us with the sincerity of a child if he could make it to Heaven. He talked about a dream he has over and over about his family at the end of a golden tunnel in heaven, and about no matter how hard he tries to reach them he just never can. That´s one of those tender moments of a mission... a man broken down in tears in front of you, truly concerned for the salvation of his soul, and you have the oppurtunity to really testify to him of the true goodness of God and power of the Atonement to save all men, those are things you just dont forget.

So ya, lots of new investigators this week, and we´re excited to see where the next couple weeks lead! Before i wrap this up though, i do need to throw in a funny story from last night... Sew, late last night we had to run some BOM´s to the boss of a resturant here on the Elbe. The boss is Italian, which is cool, because my comp is Italian. Haha he was super late and raining, so we both had our suits and overcoats on, all black. My comp walked in with his "kung fu world champion" swagger that he has, and his big ugly white companion followed him. The frightened bartender greeted us in Italian and my comp started speaking to him asking to talk to his boss, holding the books covered so they wouldnt get wet. Haha, it was totally a scene you would see in a Godfather movie. I was tempted to say, "lovely place you got here, sure would be a shame if anything happened to it" haha, and after the guy explained his boss was gone, we left the books there and talked a bit. He looked at me as we were leaving, and i was tempted to say the one italian sentence my comp has taught me, "dammi i soldi ho ti sparo bamm" which translated means, give me the money or i will shoot you in the face. (I only have him teach me mafia phrases haha) but i just nodded and said "si" and then said "buenos noches", which i later remembered is spanish, but i´m sure they all can understand each other.:) I love teaching people with my comp in italian though. There´s lots of italians here. It makes me feel like a golden again.:)

Well anyway, i hope ya´lls week back at home was as good as mine here! Love you all so much! The church is true! Have a great week.:)

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