Wednesday, August 9, 2017

Romania looks a lot like Hungary!!!

It was a conference filled week but it was super awesome!  We were able to give a training on the Divine Companionship of the Holy Ghost from Elder Holland (I mentioned it last week).  It went super good and the missionaries said that they learned a lot which was good to hear.  We had a fun little journey this past week!  As missionaries here in Hungary, we do not get visas, however, we get what are called Residency Cards.  On the residency cards, they give us a date for how long we are able to legally stay in the country (mine does not expire until like September of 2018 so I am way good).  Elder Fitzgerald's (and all the elders' in his group), however, expires before his/their release date and so we had a problem.  The lawyer came up with a solution that if they left and went to a county not in the Skanzsen (like the EU but for countries like Hungary) then you get an additional 90 days of residency.  So Elder Fitzgerald and his group planned to go to Romania on Wednesday and then Elder Bagozzi had a genius idea!  I can drive here in Hungary if I have been in the country for under a year, and so Elder Bagozzi had be ask President if I could go to Romania with them in order to get a fresh year on my residency (in order for me to keep driving).  President thought it was a great idea and had me go with them!!  It was really fun, we crossed the border, had to buy a quick little pass thing (I streeted two Romanian people while going to the bathroom) and then we came back!  Now I can legally drive for the rest of my mission, whoop whoop!

 Due to conferences, having to go to Romania, and exchanges, we were not able to meet with a lot of people this week, however, the teachings that we did have went very well. We had a really great lesson with our investigator from Ukraine this past week. He was actually going to cancel the teaching due to a bad headache, however, he wanted to give us part of a watermelon he got from his work place (the thing was so big). We went over to go and get the watermelon and he said, "well, you are all here right now, why don't we just have a teaching with each other right now!" We were happy to hear that and started the teaching. It turns out that the reason he had a head ache was because he was drinking alcohol the night before and was hung over. He told us that whenever he goes out to drink (he does not do it very often) he feels really guilty and feels not worthy before God. We were able to testify to him about the word of wisdom and the wonderful affect that it has had in our lives. We were able to discuss the physical and spiritual blessings that we see from living it. To finish the lesson we challenged him to live the word of wisdom until the next time that we met. He agreed to give up all of it (except the tea for this week), and was really excited to do it. In his closing prayer, he was so repentant and it was so amazing to hear (it was one of the most amazing prayers I have ever heard from an investigator). He is so humble and he wants to improve and change his life so badly. A couple days later, we were speaking on the phone and he told me, "I have been living the word of wisdom and I feel amazing, I am going to keep trying, well in fact, I know I will keep living the word of wisdom!" It was so amazing to hear! He was able to attend church in Pest and he really loved it again. He is progressing so well and we are hoping that we can give him a baptismal date for the 26 of August. 

We were also able to meet with a couple of the Recent Converts this last week and they are doing well. We also met with a really great new investigator this past week. One night, we were walking home from a lesson and we were standing at a cross walk waiting for the light to turn red. A teenage girl and her mom walked next to us and I felt like I should talk to them. Right when I started to talk, the light turned green and so I was able to testify to them for about 30 seconds. The girl got our number but did not give us hers. About a week later she called us and told us she wanted to meet. She told us that she knew it was not random that we met on the street and in the teaching when she felt the Book of Mormon, she immediately felt a power coming from it. The lesson went well and we are going to meet with her again tomorrow. This week, President gave a training about finding based on a talk Elder Anderson gave.  Elder Anderson said that people are being prepared everywhere, we just the have the job to open our mouths to be able to find them. This is such an amazing work and it is so amazing to be able to see the miracles that come from serving with all of my heart, might, mind, and strength.  We are really trying to focus on finding youth right now.  They are so open to hear the message and are so humble and willing to change.  One of the things that I have learned so much over the course of my mission is the importance of Humility mixed with hard work.  If we are humble before God and show Him that we are willing to improve and become better (and then work for it) he will work miracles with us and it is so cool to be able to experience!  

Have a fantastic week!  I love you all so much!!  

Gentry Elder

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