Monday, March 11, 2013

Another Week in Mariupol

Privet family!

Another week has come and gone, it's pretty weird to me for some reason. This past week has been good, I have a few experiences I'd like to share with you.

The biggest event was Zone Leader's Council in Russian with President Podvodov. Tuesday night Elder Sanger and I bussed up to Donetsk and stayed with the APs then Wednesday was our council all day. I was asked to prepare the spiritual thought which was really stressing me out preparing for it because the spiritual thought influences the whole council because very little planning goes into it, it's mostly driven by the spirit. So I was feeling a lot of pressure getting it ready and prayed that I'd know exactly which topic to talk about. (This was Sunday night the APs told me I had to give the thought) So in my studies I prayed and felt very strongly that I needed to talk about success and what that all entails on a mission. I used page 10 of Preach My Gospel and a few verses from Alma 26:23-24, 27-28, 30. These verses talk about the results of the missions of the sons of Mosiah, their successes and trials, and compare very easily with our mission. My time came to present the thought and it went very smoothly and everyone added good comments, especially President Podvodov about getting called to be a mission president and no one understanding what that even meant and calling him foolish for wasting three years of his life. My spiritual thought really guided the rest of the meeting as we talked about different successes of the mission and what we can do to have more success and trust from the members and non-members. The biggest thing is going to be striving to have members present on all lessons and an increased focus on our Russian abilities. You may be surprised to know that after Preach My Gospel came out missionaries' language capabilities plummeted because the lessons weren't memorized and so baptisms went down. So we're making a bigger push of more responsible study and application of the language. We will be trying to memorize 10 words a day and a verse from the scriptures. It's pretty tough but I think it will help us out a ton. ZLC all in all was much better than I expected and a spiritual experience for me, even though it was in Russian.

This morning Elder Sanger called the doctor in Kiev and he told him that he can lose the crutches and start walking on his own! So we've been walking around today without them and things are going well so far. This past week we were blessed to get some promising contacts on the street and we are really hopeful they will turn out for us this week. Now that Sanger is walking without crutches we'll be on the streets much more often and talking to more people, it will be an amazing week!

Nina is doing great, we met with her last night and talked about her family tree and sharing the gospel with friends and family. She is already doing this and invited her friend to church with her yesterday named Olya. She also came to her baptism. She is really interested to meet with us and so later this week we'll have a lesson. She could possibly be baptized quickly, she just seems to have that look that she is ready to listen. So Nina is well on her way to being the best 73 year old member missionary that I know! And progress with Denis, we've basically taught him everything now and are reviewing the lessons. We set a new date for April 13 to baptize him. When the weather gets warmer his mom said he can come to church so basically everything is dependant of the weather. We are also trying to work with his mom. She sat on a lesson for 10 min but then left. She's really nice, just isn't too interested in listening right now.

Now for some quick comments/tidbits. No we didn't change clocks yet. I think that will be next week. It is getting warmer, about 50 degrees F now, so this is good. Its been raining and is super foggy right now. President Campero is waiting for his doctor appt. and will probably be there a few more weeks.

I love you all and wish you a great week! I'm so thankful for the experiences I'm having here and for your love and support for me. This church is true, I know it with all my heart. Talk to you next week!

с любовью,
Старейшина Каун
Украинская Донецкая Миссия

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