Monday, September 26, 2011

September 26

Were those my pants?

The Birthday Party

A castle

Ruse At Night

Our Baptism

Reballing
Hello everybody and I have some fun pictures for you all that hopefully my mom will put on the blog so check it out if you want to see them it is http://www.twoyearsinbulgaria.blogspot.com/.  Well the last couple of days were really hetic but a whole lot of fun so let me get  on with them.

Thursday:
After writting you guys we went reballing at the mall with all the elders.  Reballing is basicly paint balling but with rubber balls.  It was a ton of fun and even after an hour I could still play more.  It is so great getting thin because I am in shape (almost but better than before) and I can do so much more.  After reballing we ate some lunch and then went back to the church for haircuts, movies, and interviews.  My interview was great and it relived a huge wieght of my shoulders and I feel like a new missionary.  Oh how I love interviews they are my faviort part of zone confrences.  After interviews we went to the apartment we were staying at and went to bed.

Friday:
In the morning we went and did Yoga on the beach.  It was fun but I am still a little sore from it.  We also before Yoga had a little time so we made a sand castle on the beach with three bridges that survived all the way through yoga.  After yoga we changed and got ready for zone conference.  Zone conference was a lot of fun and we got a new tool to help us.  It is a white board to write all of our investagators on and their problams and solutions so that we can better keep track of them.  I like it a lot and think it will help a ton.  After zone conference we got a ride back to Ruse from the Ap's which was a lot of fun.  Back home we got a pizza for dinner and then went to bed.

Saturday:
Woke up and baked all of the cookies and then it was time for english.  English was fun but I had to teach it alone because Elders Neuenswander and Seymor were in Varna for a baptisim that they had to attend.  After english we got everything ready for Miroslavs baptisim and then we had the baptisim.  We did have one hick up though.  The programs were messed up but that is nothing major and the baptism went great despite it.   I had the same feelling as always after Miroslav was baptized.   That is like when you send a kid off to school for the first time.  Basiclly he is on his own now I can support him a little but now it is up to him and it is a happy feeling and a sad one too.  But it is what he needs and his life will become so much better because of it.  After the baptism we cleaned everything up and then it was time for bed and I slept lik a log.

Sunday:
Found out that Elder Neuenswander had a stomac virus and so we went to church with out the other elders.  Church was good and it was great to have Miroslav conferem and reciev the gift of the holy ghost.  It is always such a special and amazing thing to have somebody be baptized for it really is the most important decision in their life for it is the turning point and there is no turning back.  I had to teach Gospel Principles but with Mitko's help (young, cool, member) the lesson went great and then we had priesthood and church was over.  After church we talked with the members and then went back home.  We then had lunch and planned for the next week breaking out the new white board and then after planning we went out surveying.  It was a good surveying session and we got to talk with a lot of cool people but we still didn't find anybody who was interested in learning more.  After surveying we came home for dinner and bed.

I love you all and thank you for all fot he support

Love,
Elder Austin James Ewell

Sunday, September 25, 2011

September 22

Well this long fast of letters wasn't to bad for us because we managed to keep busy and the time just flew by.  I am glad to see that eveybody is doing great and I hope you all continue to do well.  Well lets get on with the week.  Oh this will have a little less detial than before because it is 10 days and not just 6

Monday:
Well after weriting you guys we went window shopping, gokarting, and bowling.  It was a ton of fun adn a good start to a 2 week stretch of missionary work.  After the fun and games we went to work and had a lesson fall through.  So we contacted with little success for the rest of the night.

Tuesday:
After morning stuedies we street boarded until lunch and language study.  While street boarding we met a American that is going to live here for a year.  He is good friends with Mitko a member here and he is really cool.  After lunch and language study we surveyed until our meeting with tihomir the member that made a complete 180 degree turn around.  He had been inactive for 7 years and against the church, but now he wants to become a faithful active member again.  We don't know were the change came from but we are reteaching him everything.  After the meeting that went really well we met with Miroslav.  We found out he couldn't come to church on sunday so we had to push his baptismil date back to next saturday.  At least it is just work that he can't get out of and not a morality or worthiness issue.  We taught him the ten commandments and obedience to the law of the land.  The lesson went well and after wards we came home for dinner and bed.

Wednesday:
After our morning studies we had district meeting.  District meeting was a lot of fun and after wards we had lunch.  After lunch we went surveying all day, except an hour for language study, until 5:30.  At 5:30 we went on splits and I got to work with Elder Simor the Greenie.  We had a meeting with some inactive members that went well.  They are really poor but love the gospel and it was fun to teach them.  After the meeting we had dinner and went to bed.

Thursday:
Basicly contacted all day until english.  English was fun as always and afterwards we went back with our origanal companions and had dinner and went to bed.

Friday:
All day contacting and weekly planning.  We did get a call though saying Elder Dropla needed to be in Sofia on tuesday for passport work.  Well that makes Monday and Tuesday real nice and full of travel.  At least it helped the week go by a lot faster.

Saturday:
Because most of level one couldn't come in the morning we moved their class to six, but second and third level were sitll at eleven.  So Elder Neuenswander and I had language study while the others taught.  We then had lunch and surveyed until it was time to clean the church and then we had english  while the other elders language studied and then dinner and bed.

Sunday:
Had church which was good.  After church we went to Ayri's house.  He is a 22 year old member and we were helping him fill out his mission papers, but we need President Roth to unlock the papers online so we can do them.  We will talk to President Roth about it tomorow though at Zone confrence and hopefully we will be able to get the ball rolling.  I am very excited for Ayri and it will be great to see him on a mission.  Anyway after that we went contacting all day until dinner and bed.

Monday:
Yea P-Day!  Oh wait its not until thursday!  Nooooooo!  Actually monday wasn't that bad.  After having a meeting get dropped in the morning we contacted a little and then got on our bus to Sofia.  Got to Sofia around seven.  After getting situated and everything put away inthe apartment we were staying at we went to bed.

Tuesday:
Got to the passport place around 9:30 and droped off Elder Dropla with his groupies to get their passport work done.  Elder Kariya and I sat at a sweet shop and studied while waiting for them to finish.  After they were all done Elder Dropla and I got a bus back home and in the evening met with Tihomir and Miroslav.  We taught the word of wisdom and the law of chastity to Tihomir and the Priesthood to Miroslav.  Both lessons went really well and it was a good end to the day.

Wednesday:
We went contacting slash shopping for a Birthday present for Mitko a member here who was having his party today.  After that we had a little lunch and then set up for the party and had it.  The party was a lot of fun and Chris the american and his girlfriend came since they were friends of Mitko as well.  It was fun to talk with them and Mitko loved the party.  After cleaning up the party it was 6:20 so we headed home so I could prepare food for Miroslav's baptism since I won't have any other time.  After makeing every thing it was time for bed.

Well that was the long fast week.  Today should be fun since it is a zone p-day and we are all going R-balling.  Anyway one good thing about the long fasts is that guess what Monday is around the corner and then I get to write again.  Yea!!!

Love,
Elder Austin James Ewell

Monday, September 12, 2011

Get Ready for A Long Fast

Hey I guess you are wondering what the subject heading is about.  Well I will tell you.  Next week we are having a zone confrence in Varna on friday, because of this our P-Day is temporarly being moved to thursday.  This means that I will not be able to write you guys until the thursday of next week.  Yea it is going to be terreble but hey it is only for one week and then everything is going back to normal.  Anyway lets get started with this week.
 
Monday:
Well you already know about monday and the trip to Veliko Turnivo.  Well after writting you guys we caught a train back and instead of two and half hour travel time like in the morning the train took us 5 hours to get back home.  Well that was unexcpected but we were still able to get out and work for about two hours before bed.
 
Tuesday:
First thing we did after our morning studies was that we meet with the other elders to go over the former investagators in our area book to see if any of them were people that they were teaching.  Well after looking through the area books (yes we have two one just filled with former investagators and the other is the normal everyday use one) we only found about 4 and then we split ways and went and had lunch.  After lunch we cleaned our apartment because we didn't get a chance to on monday do to the train taking way to long.  Also our apartment was turning into a disaster zone and we needed to get it done.  After cleaning we went out surveying/tracting for a while.  Something funny that happened is that we gave a book of mormon to a lady and then she tried to pay us ten lev for it.  After talking with her for about 30 minutes on how we couldn't take it we finally were able to leave her.  We then had a language study before our meeting with Tihomir.  He is the member that was inactive for a long time and just mysterosly turned around.  We are meeting with him once a week to reteach him everything.  This week we retaught him the plan of salvation and the lesson went really well.  We then had a meeting with Miroslav our investagator who is getting baptized.  Elder Neueswander went with me to meet him at least once before the interview.  We taught him about prayer again and the lesson went really well.  After the meeting we got our companions back and went back home for bed.
 
Wednesday:
After our studies we had district meeting and then it was basicly surveying and member hunting the rest of the day with little success.
 
Thursday:
In the morning after our studies we went surveying and then had lunch and language study and then more surveying.  Then we had the baptismal interview with Miroslav.  The interview went great and he is all ready to get baptized this saturday.  After the interview we had english class again.  And to answer some questions at english class we give a spiritual thought at the end of the class and then we will invite them to church and to take the lessons.  If there is somebody that we feel needs to be taught or shows interest in the spiritual thoughts we invite them personaly.  Angelina from Pleven was a english student so it does work it just is slow and like everything else her the people aren't very reciptive to the gosple.  After english we went back home for dinner and bed.
 
Friday:
Basicly contacting/surveying/tracting all day until four o' clock.  At four we weekly planned and then had dinner.  After dinner we met with Miroslav to plan for his baptisim and who he wants to do what, and he wants me to baptize him.  I am happy and excited for that, but I also wish he would have picked a member so he could have that special bond with them.  Anyway I am really excited for the baptisim and it should be amazing and awesome.  After the meeting with him we went home to bed.
 
Saturday:
We had english right after our morning studies and ten we had lunch and surveyed all day.  We did clean the church at 3:30 but other than that it was just surveying and surveying.
 
Sunday:
Church was good.  I taught gospel prinicples and since Miroslav was the only investagator there and we hadn't taught him about priesthood.  The class was a lot of fun but I always feel like I am buchering the language whenever I have to teach our talk for a long time.  At the end of church we had lunch and then went and taught Irie a member that knows perfect english and used to work for carnivel cruise line.  The lesson was really cool and at the end of it he asked us if we would help him fill out his mission papers.  We instantly agreed and said anytime anywhere.  It will be so cool to see him go on a mission.  After the lesson Elder Dropla was getting a fever so we headed back home and where inside the rest of the day.  His fever broke before we went to bed, but it did get high before then so it was a good idea to head in.
 
Monday:
Well the other elders are in Sofia for passport work again and so we aren't going to be traveling today.  We are actually going to take it easy so that Elder Dropla can fully recover so he doesn't have a relaspe.
 
Everything is great here and I am having the best time on my mission with Elder Dropla and it feels amazing.   I hope you all are doing great back home and are keeping the spirit with you.
 
Love,
Elder Austin James Ewell
Miraslov and his new suit!

Ruse at night


Thursday, September 8, 2011

Labor Day

Hello everybody.  Sorry but this letter is going to be short because I don't have anytime to write because we are in Veliko Turnivo to see the fortress since we are the closest city to it and it is P-Day.  Today has been a blast and I have had a great time.  Pictures will be sent later.
Monday:
It was a fun P-day because we had about 4 kilograms of pizza while watching a movie.  It was fatty but a lot of fun.  Also I forgot to say this but as of last week I have lost 48 pounds in bulgaria.  I am at 189 pounds as of right now.  Anyway after p-day was done we put up the baptismal font to test it and after a lot of apoxy glue it was fixed.  That was monday.
Tuesday:
After our morning studies we surveyed for a while and then we had lunch and then went to go do a service project but once we got there we found out it didn't need to be done till thursday and that it couldn't either so we home taught the member and then went home changed and had a meeting with a new investagator that is amazing.  Her name is Nickoleta and she knows perfect english.  The lesson went really well and I have high hopes for her.  We then had another dropped meeting and then we went surveying until bed time and dinner.
Wednesday:
After our morning studies we had district meeting and then we had lunch and then all day it was surveying until dinner time. 
Thursday:
We did some surveying in the morning because we had a the service project again in the afternoon.  For the project we organized a members wood that he had got shipped for him.  We worked a little to fast for him and we had to take a forced brake for a while which was funny.  After the project he fed us and the other elders shared a spiritual thought.  We then went back home and had english class.  English was amazing we had 71 People there and it was huge.  We only had 37 for first level but it was still fun teaching that many people.  We then had a language study and then went to bed.
Friday:
We surveyed in the morning and then we had lunch, language study, and fixed the white board in the church because it broke during english class which was kind of embarissing.  We then surveyed a little while and then had weekly planning.  After weekly planning we had a birthday party for a member we were invited to and we went and it was a lot of fun and we got to share a little about the gospel with her aunt and uncle.  After that it was time for bed.
Saturday:
After our morning studies we had english and that was dissapointing.  We had only 7 people in first level because it was a working day and nobody else could come.  We then had lunch and language study and then went surveying until we had to clean the building.  After cleaning we had a dropped meeting and then went surveying until dinner time.
Sunday:
Church was a little sad because a lot of members were at a youth confrence and so we only had 10 people at church.  Other than that it was alright and then we had to do some branch work with the branch president.  After that we contacte all day until 6 when we had a meeting with member and then we had a meeting with Miroslav.  He is so cool his family and friends had given him some anti matierale but that didn't even bother him and he was just more worried about that he had no proper clothing for church.  So I gave him one of my old suits and it fit perfectly.  The meeting went well and I have to go because we have to leave.