Monday, July 25, 2011

July 25, 2011

            Well I did end up emailing today, so sorry for ruining all of your plans mom, but it just worked out that way. We are doing austausches today and I'll be working in Wien so it will be fun. Oh and I got the new credit card like 2 weeks ago. Sorry you have probably been freaking out, but I totally forgot. You can activate it today.
            So this week was pretty crazy week. We had a lot of appointments last Monday where we just met with people, gave them a first lesson and a Book of Mormon, and then when we tried to make out a second appointment they said they were going on vacation for 3 weeks. And half of our branch is going on vacation for 3 weeks as well.  Apparently all of Austria goes on like 3 week vacations at the end of July, and if the church wasn't true then that would be a big hindrance to the work, but luckily the church is true, and the work goes on even when people are on vacation.
            We were going by every day to try and help Christina quit smoking, but it wasn't really helping at all, just adding more pressure to her. But one of our investigators, Andreas, who came to church last week, is really cool. He lives like literally on top of the mountains in Austria, in some crazy little town where you can by fresh milk and eggs from the farmers every morning. He is 46ish, never married, currently has no job, and a druggie and alcoholic. But he came to church last week and we took him to a members afterwards for lunch, and to repay us he invited us to his house for lunch. We had a really good time and talked about the most random stuff ever. Like pretty much everyone in Europe, one of the first questions he asked us was if we were virgins. And then we got into a long discussion about what chastity is. At first he couldn't understand why we would wait until after marriage to have sex, but then we explained what it meant to us personally to keep ourselves sexually pure and to know that our wife has done that as well, and the level of trust and love that that allows us to establish, and by the end he said, "wow that is really amazing. I wish I would have been able to have something like that." it was awesome to see the spirit bear testimony of our words to him. As well as chastity we also talked about the Book of Mormon and how it can help him. He just ended a long relationship and really wants to change his life and get off drugs and alcohol. He has a hard time believing that Christ is more than a man, but we gave him 3 Nephi 11 to read, and on Sunday when he came to church he gave me 2 pages of his thoughts that he had wrote on the chapter. We definitely knew that he had kept his commitment. Both Elder Bagley and I feel that he is very ready for the gospel and the Lord has been preparing him for a long time.
            But that isn't the craziest story of the week. We got a referral for some guy named Volker Schiefer, and we called him but got no answer. The next morning he called us back and said that he found the church website and wants to visit the church, but he wasn't sure if he was allowed to come to priesthood meeting because he isn't a priest. We assured him that he is most definitely invited to priesthood meeting, and then he asked if he could bring his kids. Again we were like "yeah of course" so he came to church yesterday with his two sons, who are 13 and 11. At church he told us that he was evangelish, but he left the church on his own, and he was interested in our church because of our view point on the godhead. He really enjoyed church and we are looking forward to a great lesson with him this week.
            We are still working hard with Christina, please keep her in your prayers, Elder Bagley and I are looking forward to another great week, the Lord is truly blessing the area of Wiener Neustadt and he has really blessed us. I love you and have a great week

Elder Terry

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

July 19, 2011

Okay my new address is

Elder Andrew Terry
Kirche Jesu Christ HLT
Zehnergürtel 7/3/33
2700 Wiener Neustadt

            And yes, I am pretty much going from one side of the mission to the other, which is lovely long train rides. Luckily I don't have to pay for transfers, because the last ticket was 115 euro. Yeah ridiculous. I don't even want to think about how much the church has already paid to send me to Vienna, then to Stuttgart, and then back to Vienna. Way too much. But I am going to need some more money in my debit account, because we have to buy our tickets to Vienna for district meeting, and that is about 20 euro a week. I will get reimbursed, don't worry, but money is going to be tight until I can send in my reimbursements.
            Oh and to answer why I am emailing on Tuesday, the only good internet shop in our area is closed until August sometime, so we will be emailing on Tuesdays after district meeting for a while.
            And there is always a reason why missionaries get transferred, and I didn't have any visa issues really, we still had plenty of time, and there was a lot better reason why I was transferred to Waiblingen, but anyways I am really happy to be back in Austria, and to be serving in Wiener Neustadt. It really is a beautiful city, and like you found out it is only about an hour south of Wien.
            Now some stuff about the area. The area in Wiener Neustadt is pretty rough. The branch here has been through a lot, including having a lot of disobedient missionaries, and some very promising investigators who suddenly didn't want to be baptized the day before their baptism, and the branch is just lethargic about missionary work, which is very understandable. They haven't had any baptisms in 4 or 5 years, and they have had tons of members go inactive. So let’s just say that the branch, and us, really needs a lot of prayers right now.
            That being said, the work is going super awesome right now. Elder Bagley is a great elder. He is from North Carolina, he went to BYU for a year and lived in heritage halls, so we were actually living very close to each other, and he already has lived in Germany for 5 months, and speaks really, really good German. We have already seen tons of success in just the last few days, and the Lord is truly blessing us and directing this great work. We have a great investigator, Christinne Fuchs, who actually had a baptismal date for this weekend, but she still has some smoking problems, so if everyone could pray for her, that would be great. I have been pretty worried that I would totally butcher this transfer, especially with her, since I have never even taught the wow yet, but I know that the Lord put Elder Bagley and I in Wiener Neustadt for a reason, and that we are the best elders for this area at this time. We have both been humbled by the many blessings we have seen in the work already. It is just so great.
Yes, I will register with the police in Wiener Neustadt, it is required by Austrian law to do so, but we haven't done it yet because we have been waiting on a few papers, but probably do that tomorrow. Our apartment is by Fischaurpark, which is a mall, which is really convenient for shopping. Yes the church is across street from Maxmillian Kaserne, but there are two kasernes, or military academies, in Wiener Neustadt, and Maximillian Kaserne isn't really used to much. Wiener Neustadt is super windy, my companion calls it the Chicago of Austria. Oh and we have bikes in this area. It has been tons of fun to ride bikes everywhere. Totally awesome. Our area is pretty big. We cover from Baden to pretty far south, and from the eastern border to somewhere, I'm not quite sure. It is pretty massive, and impossible to cover without a car. But we do our best. Anyways I love you all, thanks so much for the support, mom you are the best, and bis nachste woche (until next week)!

Elder Terry

Monday, July 11, 2011

July 11, 2011

          Well first thing first.... I'M GOING BACK TO AUSTRIA!!!! hahaha on Friday we had transfer calls, and I got transferred to Wiener Neustadt!!! I was there on austausch when I was in Wien. It is about an hour south of Wien, so I'm in for a super long train ride on Wednesday. yay. hahaha but that's not the scariest part. Pres. Miles asked me to be a senior companion! My new companion is Elder Bayles or something like that. He has been on his mission for one transfer, and apparently he has good German because he was fast tracked through the MTC. So this next transfer is going to be really really exciting. It is very possible that we will be the most confused and lost little missionaries ever. Good thing we have the most super experienced third companion, the Holy Ghost! Anyways I'm sure things will all work out, they always do, and I'm excited for this chance to serve the Lord!
        Also we met our new mission president, President and Sister Miles, and they are way cool. Different from Pres. Condie, but I know that the Lord has called them to be mission president and wife, and I know that they will be a great blessing to me. Oh and I got a letter from Brooke, I guess that it came to Wien after I left, so I got it when we met Pres. and Sis. Miles, so tell her not to worry, she should be getting a letter soon.
        It sounds like things are going well at home, that is always good. Good luck with the recorder and the program and all, sounds complicated.
            Well this week has been pretty interesting. We were supposed to have a couple of appointments with less active members, but they fell out. We did have finally have an appointment with Manfred Quandt, he got baptized the transfer before I got here. He came to church my first week but hasn't been to church since. He was in the process of getting a new job so he never had time to meet with him. We finally did manage to meet with him and it went well. He came to church yesterday so hopefully we can help him stay active. Also we had a really cool experience. We made out an appointment with a member who lives with his mom and sister, but his mom and sister aren't members. We both had the feeling that we should teach the Plan of Salvation and commit him to read 2 Nephi 2. His mom made us salzkuchen, (salt cake. don't ask me what it is, but it tasted good) and she stayed for our lesson. It was really great because we were able to talk about eternal families, and we committed them to read 2 Ne. 2 together. Bro Braun, the member, was really surprised because he had just barely started reading the Book of Mormon over, and he was exactly on 2 Ne 2. He also told us at church yesterday that he has tried to talk to his mom and get her to investigate and the missionaries have come over before, but this is the first time that she has committed to doing something, and he was really happy and very hopeful. It is truly amazing how well the Lord can guide us to teach EXACTLY what people need. It truly was a miracle.
         We also had another service project on Saturday, laying down brick for a pathway, and it was pretty fun. Also on Saturday the bishop called becuase one of his speakers had cancelled, so he wanted me to give a talk on Sunday. Also our ward mission leader called us to tell us we have a presentation for the young men, and that we needed to teach the investigator class on sunday because he couldn't. Needless to say it was a busy Sunday. But everything went really well, and the members were all super nice and sad that I was leaving. We actually got two more meal appointments because of it. hahaha this ward is just great. Anyways I'll send some pictures from the Mercedes-Benz museum, and have a great week. I love you!

Elder Terry

Elder Patchett

Elder Andrew Terry

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

More pictures from Andrew

MTC district
MTC district
With his MTC district
With Elder Pieper at Schloss Schönbrunn

July 5, 2011

          Well as you are aware, I didn't email yesterday, and that’s because we changed our P-day. We had a service project yesterday and we really wanted to go to the Mercedes Museum, which will be a fun rest of the day. At least I was close with my guess of Pro. Porter. 1st counselor is pretty good.
Thanks for the info on the draft. Tay told me in her letter that Jimmer got drafted and traded, but I was glad to hear who the Jazz drafted. Well actually not really. Another foreign, white, center? The jazz have drafted one of those every year for the past forever! Well I guess it’s good to know some things never change. I actually already knew that Cael Sanderson was going to wrestle in the next Olympics. OR at least that he wanted to. Apparently he wrestled in some tournament right after his team (Penn State) won nationals, and he worked everyone. He told Elder Sanderson that he wanted to wrestle in the Olympics again. That is cool that it is official now.
            I saw the beginning of the Biggest Loser with Rulon Gardner, but not the end. hahaha now he is doing the Olympics too? hahahaha funny stuff. Thanks for the movie update, and I also heard the new X-men is really really good, so maybe you should go see it? With the Harry Potter DVD, it should work on your computer, or on the home computer. You will need to install a program that will play it, but you can probably find the program for free somewhere on the world wide web. But that is only if you want, it’s not really that big of a deal. Sounds good on the whole credit card thing. Don't worry, it will all work out.
            This week was a pretty good week. We had 2 service projects fall out, but we still did two projects. One was digging out this massive root, which is like my specialty after that time we digged out the swing set for Bro Judd. It was fun. And then yesterday we mowed a lawn and cut down some trees. Okay that makes it sound lame. I need to give some background info so that it sounds as cool as it really was. First, here in Germany and in Austria, most people don't have gardens by their houses, obviously not enough room, but a lot of people have garden houses, which is a little hut up in the mountains where they have a garden, or property or such. So we were at one of these garden houses yesterday. We mowed the lawn with some super old lawn mowers, but if there is anything I know how to do after years of working for Grandpa and working for grounds crew, it is mowing lawns. So that was no problem. But then the member we were doing service for wanted these trees cut down, so we got to do that too. It was an adventure. Also we had the best meal ever last night! Roclet, or something like that, I can’t spell it, but pretty much you have this giant grill and you put meat and vegetables and cheese on it and cook it and then put it on potatoes. It was amazingly tasty.
            So this week has been sorta frustrating, in that we haven't really found any new investigators in a while, and it is definitely frustrating me. Donna, our investigator with the baptismal date, said she needs a break from meeting with us, so she is definitely not getting baptized on Saturday, and we aren't really sure what the problem is. But I'm fairly confident that her husband doesn't want us meeting with her. But the Lord's plan cannot be frustrated, and I am confident that things will work out for the best. Markus, our investigator who had a stroke, is still making very slow progress. I told Elder Patchett that if Markus doesn't get baptized, at least he is helping us develop all of the Christ-like attributes. Seriously, he is like a 2 year old, except he smokes and has a huge pornography problem. Anyways in our last appointment he told us that 9 of the 10 commandments are good, but one is false. We asked which one, and he said the Sabbath. Apparently he learned from his multitude of Jesus movies that Jesus told the people that they don't have to keep the Sabbath. So we ended up having to read like 2 chapters of the bible, and then he just dropped it when he saw we were right. He is definitely an interesting man, but like everyone else he is a child of God, and he deserves the chance to hear and accept the restored gospel.
            Anyways, this week has been hard, but I'm sure that it is for our benefit, and that greater blessings lay just around the corner. It would be really really awesome if those greater blessings included some new investigators :) but if not, then it is according to the will of the Lord, and it will not be because of a lack of effort on our part. I am very grateful for the opportunity to serve my mission, and I’m very glad for the chance to work here in Waiblingen with Elder Patchett. I know Jesus is the Christ, that he restored his church through the prophet Joseph Smith, and that Pres. Monson has the keys and the authority to receive revelation to lead the Church today. Christ leads this work. I am grateful for this chance to work side by side with Him for the salvation of our brothers and sisters. I love you mom and thanks for your great letter!
Elder Terry

June 27, 2011

            I'm glad you got the package at the right time. I was hoping it would get there before Sidney’s birthday. I sent it last Thursday I believe, so that is really quick, I'm surprised. It must of been because it was so small that I sent it as a letter not as a package, which was really nice because it ended up being 18 euro to ship it instead of 40. And I'm pretty sure the movie won't even work. They have a different dvd code here so American dvds don't work on European dvd players and vice versa. But if it works great. I hope the nimm 2 didn't melt. They were the random candies I threw in there. I gave you guys the leftovers from a bag of nimm 2 sours I bought, and the sours aren't as good as the originals, so I hope it pleased you. And hopefully the Ritter sport chocolate was okay, Ritter sport isn't the best German chocolate, but it is good, and it comes in square packages which was perfect for that box. Now to answer the questions from the letter you sent me.
            First of all, let Riker know that that isn't a Unicef shirt, it’s a Barcelona soccer jersey. Messi. Greatest player in the world. Ask brother Fogth about him. But he can wait until he comes to Germany to buy one. I bought mine for 10 euro at a market in Wien. That picture is in front of Stephans Dom. Ridiculously massive Catholic church in the middle of Wien. The arch way is from a few weeks ago when Elder Patchett and I went to Welzheim. It used to be part of the wall built by the Romans to mark the edge of their kingdom, so it’s significant because it is like 2000 years old. The picture of Elder Pieper and I is from the back yard of Schloss Schönbrunn. It’s pretty much up this giant hill, and there is a big pool and a monument and statues at the top, which we are facing, but the picture shows the rest of the city of Wien. It’s an amazing view. And Riker should enjoy the picture from this week. He is probably the only one capable of understanding how awesome it was that I found a HUGE Zelda ad, and of course I had to get a picture right next to it!
            This week has been interesting. Thursday was some catholic holiday, which pretty much meant that everyone got drunk on Wednesday night, and then drank and partied and slept the whole weekend, so from Wednesday on missionary work was a little hard. But we have TONS planned for this next week, we already have like 9 appointments and 3 service projects planned, plus an ausstellung in Forzheim, so we have a busy week ahead of us. Oh last week I went to Heilbronn again on exchanges. I got to see a bunch of old castles because we had to take a train ride farther north. And I rode a ferry! It was awesome! Pretty much we needed to go to this city but it is on the other side of the Neckar river, and the only way across was a ferry. It was an interesting town. First guy I talked freaked out because we were from "Jesus Christ" and then he started telling us, in English with a heavy German accent, about how everything found in the Christian religions originated in the Egyptian Death Book. He was totally crazy, but super funny. He was mad because I wouldn't argue, I just told him that it’s the same gospel that has always been revealed, so yes, the Egyptians had it too.  Anyways that was my fun German adventure for the week. Oh and some old grandma at this train stop in the little town like an hour away from everything was super funny. She came up to us and asked if we were going to a wedding because we were dressed in suits. We said no, but that we were missionaries for our church. She asked what church, and we said " die kirche Jesu Christ der Heiligen der letzten tage." and like most people, she said "Catholic?" we said no, and asked if she had heard of the mormons. Then she got a really scared look on her face and was like, "You are mormons? And you think that is good?" and we said, yep! and she said "well I don't." but we continued to talk to her and she was really surprised that we believed in Christ, that we didn't have multiple wives, etc. She wouldn't meet more with us, but at least we straightened out one person's misconceptions.
            Mom, you wanted to know what food I was eating here, so here it goes. First is maultaschen. It is the BEST! It is the meat stuff covered in dough. Like a giant ravioli. But it tastes soooo good, and has like 8 billion calories, and is super cheap. Supposedly tons of missionaries get super fat here in schwäb land. Oh that is what this area of Germany is called. No clue why, but that’s just how it goes. They have schwäbisch food, they speak schwäbisch, which is some crazy dialect, and it is just awesome. Another great food is spitzle. It like these noodles made from eggs. Really tasty. Well that is enough food talk for this week, what is important is that the Church is true! Don't worry mom, I am doing better with talking to people. It’s still super weird, but hey, these people don't even know me! They think I am just some crazy Jehovah’s Witness most of the time, so it’s all good. Anyways, if you won't speculate about bishop, then I will. My guess is Bro. Porter or Bro. Zirker. So keep me posted. Anyways, I love you!
Viele Leibe,
Elder Terry