Hey everyone!! Thank you for your great emails! I always love reading them so stinking much, they are some of the highlights of my week! It was as really great week for us and I will include as much as I can!
We were able to go on exchanges this past week with the Elders in Szeged. I was able to work with Elder Hughes and the exchange went great! His parents might be Kyle Taylor's mission presidents, I know there are many missions in the Philippines, but you never know. We were able to do a lot of finding where we really focused on teaching our message in such a way that those we were talking with understood why were there and how this could truly help them in their lives (through asking a lot of questions). We worked as hard as we could and got 11 potential investigators! We also had a great teaching with one of their investigators where we were able to teach about the Atonement and the relevance it had for her. Elder Hughes is a stud and a great missionary!
We were also able to have a good week here in Buda. We were able to meet with our investigator from Ukraine 3 times this past week and he was able to come to church. All of the teachings went really well and he is really progressing. The part in the gospel that really interests him is about progression and becoming a better person. We have brought up baptism with him and proposed a baptismal date, however, he said that before he commits to anything he wants to keep learning and be sure of his decision. He also says that before he gets to that level of baptism, he wants to be fully ready to commit to living a good life and following the path that Christ showed us. We had a really cool experience on Saturday night when he said that when we meet with him, he feels calmness and peace and when we are not around him then he feels different (almost depressed). We taught about the feelings of the Holy Ghost and how the Holy Ghost speaks to us through calmness and peace and how the reason that members of the church are so happy is because they have the Holy Ghost with them as their constant companion. He was able to come to church like I mentioned and he said he liked it (however he said he might want to go to the Pest ward because it is in English). He met a member named Tatyana who is also from Ukraine and speaks Ukrainian. They got along really well and explained lots of things about the church to him. He is progressing well and we are going to keep meeting with him.
We also met with another of our investigators a couple of times this past week. He was also able to come to church, however he only stayed for the 1st hour. We were able to discuss what true repentance means and also the importance of the Restoration (we showed him the film which he seemed to like). He is doing well but just seems to be really hard on himself from time to time. We were able to give him a blessing and Tamás from the ward came with us and was able to give him the blessing. We were able to discuss with him how with the help of God we can stay on the gospel path and recover even when we fall and need to return back to it. He is doing well and I hope that he can continue to find the strength to overcome what he is working on. We were also able to meet with another of our investigator’s this past week a couple times. He is also doing well but unfortunately was not able to come to church and was not able to read any of the things we gave to him. We are probably going to start to less-frequenting our visits with him and are going to try to find the roadblock that is keeping him from keeping commitments. We also met with all our recent converts in Buda this past week and they are all doing well! We also met with a new investigator who lives in Szent Endre . He is an older man who has seen a lot of hard trials and agreed to let us talk with him.
President mentioned something about having investigators learn for themselves how they feel the spirit and how we teach them the doctrine and then they come to feel it is true on their own. Elder Fitzgerald and myself have been discussing a lot lately how when investigators (or anyone for that matter) come to find out something for themselves, they receive internal validation and the concept is more likely to stay in them and have more of a powerful effect on them. I noticed this a lot with mathematics back home. When I received guidance from a teacher and then took the time to personally study out a concept that was hard for me to understand, with time I eventually thoroughly understood the concept and did not easily forget it. I think it is the same with those we teach. We teach them how to find the answers and then they have to put in the work to find them for themselves (which is why commitments are so important). I feel like those that do this process are the ones who become truly converted.
I love this work and I love my Savior Jesus Christ.