Monday, June 6, 2011

June 5, 2011

            Well... I forgot to bring your letter with me, so I don't know if I can remember all of your questions, but I will try to give as many answers as possible. So first, our apartment is right across the street from a horse meat factory, so every Monday morning we get to listen to horses get killed. Yeah at least it’s not every day. I don't know what you meant by a park nearby, there is like some farm land and an open field and stuff, but not really any trails to run on. We have only gone running once unfortunately because Elder Patchett is a karate kid and not a runner, but I just normally do push-ups and sit-ups and stuff, although last week I bought a basketball because we live only like a 5 minute walk from the church, and we played this morning so that was fun. Waiblingen doesn’t really have anything to fun to do, definitely not like Vienna, but I am hoping that I will be able to convince Elder Patchett to go to Ulm for P-day in a few weeks, which is in our zone, to see a huge Catholic church, and I think next week we are going to go to a Porsche Museum in Stuttgart. The problem is that museums here are closed on Mondays so we have to change our P-day to go to museums so it’s a hassle. So if I don't email until Tuesday next week than that is why.
            (Regarding the e-coli outbreak in Germany he says…) Yeah, we received orders from Pres. and Sis. Condie to disinfect our apartment so on Saturday we went to the store, bought some bleach, cleaned everything and bleach rinsed our fruits and vegetables. And we can't eat lettuce for a while. I hadn't heard anything about the nuclear reactor stuff, if you want to learn about German news google Stuttgart 21. That is the big issue here. Some people want to modernize the Stuttgart bahnhof but a lot of people are against it. Anyways that’s the extent of news that I know of here.
            Well this week has definitely been an adventure. We have been going by on a bunch of referrals that Elder Patchett and his companion got last transfer but that they didn't go by on. So we have been going to the outskirts of our mission. For example on Wednesday we went to a little town called Weltzheim, which is two train rides and a bus ride away. It took about an hour and a half to get there. We went by on the referral and they weren't home, and the next bus didn't come for like 2 hours, so we doored around. We also found out that apparently Weltzheim was some border guard city for the Roman Empire in like 200 AD, and there are these cool old ruins of a wall and stuff, so we took some quick photos that I will send next week. Other than that we have been trying to talk to everyone, and we made out a couple of appointments with people off the street, but none of them went through.
            But we had a SUPER cool experience yesterday. A member from the branch in Elder Patchett’s old area apparently lives in our area right now to go to school, but he hasn't been coming to church at our ward, so we called him and set up an appointment for yesterday. He told us his address, which was Bürgestacker strasse 3 in Winnenden. Only it wasn't really in the city of Winnenden, but instead was in a little dorf outside of Winnenden but that technically belongs to Winnenden city. Anyways it was about 5 km away, with no bus, so we ended up dooring in Winnenden for 2 hours and then walked to this guy’s house. It took us about 45 minutes to walk there, and by the time we got there we were tired and super thirsty. Then we can't find his house. So we double check our map and it turns out that we were on Bürgerstacker strasse and we wanted Bürgestacker strasse, which was in a dorf on the opposite side of Winnenden. Needless to say, we were unhappy, and thirsty and tired. So we were sitting on the corner of the street pondering our misfortune, when this couple, probably in their late 50s, walked by. We decided we really needed some water so we asked them if they lived close by and if we could get some water for our water bottles. They were super nice and said sure, and so we started walking with them and explained how we had gotten mixed up. They lived on Bürgerstacker strasse and they said it happens all the time, and so not to worry about it. Anyways they let us in their house, gave us some juice and some pretzels, and we kept talking to them. They asked how we would get back and we said we would probably walk, but the husband said it was too far and he would just drive us. Then it started hailing and raining really hard all of the sudden, so the husband wanted to wait until the storm blew over so that the hail didn't dent his car, so we kept talking. They asked about why we were here and we explained that we were missionaries from our church and that we shared a message about the gospel of Christ. They said that they were Methodists but that they would love to learn more about our church. We taught them about the Book of Mormon, and bore testimony of it. We said a prayer before we left and blessed them and their house and they definitely felt the spirit. We left them a Book of Mormon and the wife told us to stop by if we were in the area again. The husband didn't want to make out a return appointment because he said that they were firm in their church, and that there were too many other people that don't know about God, and that our time is too precious to spend talking to them when we aren't going to convert them. Anyways they gave us their names (Marianne and Gerhard Haller) and address and phone number though, and they were seriously the nicest people ever. It was so amazing and truly humbling to look back and see how everything that had happened that day, even things from the entire week, had been shaped by the Hand of the Lord so that we could meet this couple on the streets of some little dorf that we should never of been at in the first place. I know that the Lord led us to them, and he arranged for us to meet them at the perfect spot and at the perfect time so that we could deliver a personal message from God to them. We are going to continue to pray for them to read in the Book of Mormon, and we are planning to go by again in 2 weeks or so with some thank you cookies and see how things are going.
            Well that was our amazing story of the week, and I know that we will continue to have more stories like that. The work of the Lord is progressing, even here in little ol’ Germany, and soon it will penetrate every climb and touch every heart. The Lord directs his work, of that I have no doubt, and one day all shall kneel and confess that Jesus is the Christ. That is the work in which we are all engaged. Thank you for all of your prayers and your fasting mom, they truly have helped me, and I love you.

Elder Terry

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