Hello Loving Family,
This week has by far been one of the craziest weeks I have had! I have no idea where to begin: Might as well start from the beginning
Elder Larsen was transferred to Pinneberg, on Tuesday morning. It was tough to say goodbye. He has been the missionary I could count on almost every day that I have been out on my mission (you know, besides the best, Father in Heaven and His Son and the family back at home of course). But it will be really weird not having him around anymore. When I put him on the train, we had a bunch of missionaries with us so I was goofying off and putting my hand on the window, saying goodbye, and fogging up the window and making hearts, you know, the usual. He even wanted me to run after the train, but that did not happen. Then after he left, I got a big surprise... since the new missionaries do not come until thursday, I got to spend two days again with Elder Wirthlin!! That by far was super fun and I had a blast. It was really weird to have him again as a companion and to be teaching with him. Then the day came: Thursday. Man was that really weird. We all met in Berlin where we were in July when we came. Talk about memory lane. And it was great to see all the progress since. I was able to see most of my old district in the MTC and that was great too. It was just really weird moment being in the shoes of the trainer instead of the trainee. His name is Elder Schmalz. He is from Saratoga Springs, Utah, and is 18 years old. He is a pretty bold guy and I am not quite used to that yet, but he is great. It has been really funny to see him looking to me when someone speaks to us. And to just imagine that I was in his shoes not too long ago. He is a really nice guy and I hope that I am helping him enjoy his time here. He is really not used to just two missionaries in one area so that has been a challenge for him to know that it is just me and him in our area. But he has a strong testimony and is really determined. I think our time here is going to be great and I know that with prayer, it is all possible. The language is not too scary for me anymore. I have gotten to the point that I can follow a steady conversation. It is just when people go into their hobbies they lose me. so I will be in Meißen for christmas. It is also weird to think for 1/4 of my mission, will be spent in east germany. But I love meißen. The members here are great. And the work is going well. We as a mission have a goal to have 125 baptisms by the end of the year. That means about 1 baptism per compaionship. So that has been a major focus. We have some people here that I know they are ready. We are going to invite some of them this week. One is Rene and Uwe. About two weeks ago, they shared with us that baptism is a goal for them, that they can see themselves there. So, this week we are going to try to set a goal and a date to be able to achieve that vision. We also have a wonderful African family in our area, that I have come to find out that the husband actually preaches the Book of Mormon to all his friends and tries to show them the similarities between the Book of Mormon and the Bible. So we are also hoping to be able to extend the invitation this week as well. I really believe in our mission goal. And I want to be able to do all my part to help with it. And Elder Schmalz will help me with it as well. We are also been able to get back into contact with alot of old investigators, and finding new ones during the week. So I am very hopeful for the people of Meißen. I have grown to love them.
I am glad to hear that everyone is doing good back at home. I was able to bear my testimony this week in our branch and it was a great feeling to tell them that I know that I will be with her again and that this life is not the end. And I truly believe that. And I almost feel that this is giving me strength. It has been such a wonder to witness how much people can relate. I have already had many members in the ward shower me with love and support. And we were able to speak with a man on saturday on the street and he began to tell us that he lost his family as well. And I feel like that I can be able to help him. That we can help and support each other. And I know that she is with me now. She is the one that gives me strength and helps me pressing forward.
Pictures are on the way! I am sorry that it keeps taking me so long to send them but I will make sure to get them out this week. And so apparently that is the style in Germany. It is hard when you cannot communicate with the hair style lady, when she is talking about centimeters and what not with a different measuring system and what not, so I just kind of let them do what they want with my hair. (the funny part about that is all the 80 year old ladies in Meißen like to stop me and compliment me on it, so....)
I love you all back at home and you are all in my prayers and thoughts,
With all the love that I have,