Monday, April 9, 2012

Ruse Again

First of all I don't have much time this week so sorry if this letter is shorter than normal.  This week was super busy though because we are supposed to have sisters in Ruse with us but until the new sister arrives we are on our one as a two elder district.  So it has been hetict doing double the work load.  It is all going good though and it was a good week.  First though My companions name is Forrest Wayne Babbitt (yes two r's, b's, and t's.)  He is from Mesa Arizona and fresh from the office and ready to work.  He is the oldest in his family and we get a long great.  My area is the same as last time because there is only one branch in Ruse and I do have the same apartment which I am happy about because it is my faviorit apartment in the mission.  So now onto the week. 

Monday:
After writing you guys we watched some movies, played pool, and got fed a great goodbye dinner by the other elders landlord.  After dinner we went to bed.

Tuesday:
All day traveling.  Me and my new companion finally got into Ruse around 3:30 and went strait to work. Our days have been full of meetings and preping the area for the sisters since we need to figure out who they should teach and lets just say it is a long prayerful process.

Wednesday:
We had a two elder district meeting which basiclly was just cleaning the area books and starting the seperation process.  We then had a meeting with an investagator who got baptized with his daughter on saturday.  He is a quiet guy but rock soild in the gospel and completely values prayer.  Him and his daughter (I will say more in the Saturday and sunday portion about her) are going to be great for this branch.  We contacted for awhile and then had a meeting with Tihomir a member I had started to reactivate last time.  He is now fully active and doing well which is really great to see and makes me feel good.  After him we had  a dropped meeting and then it was time for dinner and bed.

Thursday:
In the morning we met with another member who I was trying to reactivate last time as well.  He is still strugguling but he did come to church this week and it seems like he is going to start coming more.  We contacted basicly all day and in the meeting had a meeting with Sabina a recent convert who was baptized two weeks ago.  She is awousem and really smart. She also will be great for this branch.  That was thursday.

Friday:
Had two meetings to day and weekly planning.  One meeting wasn't that long.  It was with a investagator who lives in a villiage outside of Ruse.  The meeting was alright but we only had ten minutes and we were outside.  Hopefully next time we can meet with him for longer.  The other meeting was with a member named Tsevtilin to help him with his talk on sunday.   He is really weird but funny and he was super happy to see me again.  That was it for friday.

Saturday:
We had the baptism for Stefi and Ivo.  Stefi is a 15 year old ball of energy and and super excited to become a member.  The baptism went great.  I will try to say more next week but I am almost out of time.

Sunday:
Well this was a very special day for me because Stefi asked me to give her the holy ghost.  For those who don't know that was the first time for me to do that and also the first time I have given a blessing in bulgarian.  It was a very precious experince for me.  The rest of the day was just contacting but we got 4 numbers which was really cool.  Oh yeah we did meet with some members.  It was a good meeting.

I am sorry this letter is so short and doesn't have much detial. I just don't have much time today and I promise next week I will send a bigger one.

Love,
Elder Ewell

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Experience

Our stake is holding a missionary prep class and the teacher asked if the missionaries serving from the ward could email and share an experience.  Here is Austin's.  I did not edit so I think he thinks in Bulgarian so he is having a hard time with grammar.  Enjoy!

One of the most uplifting spiritual experinces of my mission came when I started to pray with earnest for help from God.  Praying has always been a hard thing for me to get into a good habit of saying.  I finally have gotten into the habit of saying them everyday now and the blessings are very apparant.  One of the blessings that I feel are directly related to constant prayer is when one night a family investagated the church with out us doing a single thing (in fact at the moment we were trying to reschedual for a different time.)  Here is what had happened.  We had been tracting and we were on the 2nd floor of a apartment complex after having worked from the top down with little succes.  Once we not on this door immidetly two dogs started barking extreemly loud bad sign number one.  The door was opened by a young girl who before we could even ask for her parents just left (bad sign #2.)  The mother then showed up and said that she had guests over (bad sign #3) then before we could even explain why we were their and give her our information since obviously the time wasn't right 3 guys came up searching for a person in the house (bad sign #4.)  She went off to get him and then came back with chocolates to treat us because it was her birthday (good sign chocolate bad sign birthday.)  Then her husband came to the door which 90% of the time turns out bad (bad sign #6) and then her father (#7.)  All the while this little dog is yapping its head of.  At this point we are just trying to say that we would come back at a later time, but we kept getting interupted.  Then dispiet not having said anything all that important, about the gosple, or about why we were there she invited us in (7 bad signs + 1 good sign =  let in?)  We were thoroughly confused and just agreed to go in.  We went in and she took us to their living room where her mother and father and daughter were celebrating her birthday.  She then went and brought us some dinner and we were able to talk a little about the gospel.  The only thing that really had helped us get in is that my companion could play the piano (lesson two it is important to know some type of musical instrument to get let into houses) and they wanted him to play a little.  Anyways I was an amazing night and after talking for awhile we all sang together and my companion played the piano.  Then the daughter played and she was amazing.  We then manage to rescheadule another meeting with them for the next night.  The amazing part about this story is that; One, we didn't really do anything, but pray for succes and did the work, two that night and the next was the only two nights that that family had free and were all together.  So that was our only chance to find them.  We have now been teaching them and they are some of the coolest people I have met in bulgaria and are progressing in the gosple.  That was also the first time in a year and a half that that had happened to me.  I know that prayer is the most powereful tool we have and can bring to pass miricules.  My life and mission has become so much better as I have relied on prayer and I can feel the litterl strength I recive from it everyday.  I know this church is the true church of God on the earth and I am so happy that I decided to serve a mission.  I say these things in the name of Jesus Christ, Amen.
Elder Ewell

April 2 Transfers

Well as you can tell from the subject heading we had transferes this week.  You will never guess where I am going so just keep on reading and you will find out.

Monday:
After writing you guys we had a nice relaxing P-day.  At the end we went contacting and dropped of a cake at the Nikolovi because their four year old daughter's birthday was today.  They loved the cake and thanked us a ton. we then came back home to bed.
Tuesday:
In the morning we had a meeting with Toni a new investagatior.  She is really cool and understands religion very well.  We had a really indepth first lesson focussing a lot on the great apostasy and who is god.  We did run into one problem though about how she doesn't belive any man can see God, because the bible says know man has seen god.  We tried explaing that ment unworthy men and showed examples in the bible of people who did see god.  Nothing worked so we commited her to pray about it and she said she would.  Other than that hick up everything went great.  After the lesson we went out contacting for the rest of the day.  We even went tracting for a while.  I was rusty since it had been a while but we had a great time tracting and had a ton of succes.  There was the coolest doorbell while tracting as well.  It basicly was just a string attached to a bell inside the house but it was cool because it was unique.  I got a picture of it and will send it with this letter.  After tracting and contacting all day we came back in for the night.
Wednesday:
In the morning we had our last district meeting in Pleven together as a district.  It went well, I did a review of the previous Zone Confrence and then we all shared a spiritual experiance from this transefer.  After eating we contacted all day until the evening when we had a meeting with the Georgivi family.  We did a really good lesson on the fall, atonement, great apostasy, and restoration.  It was a really powerful lesson and also it was the first time their boy was there as well to listen in.  I really hope that they gain a testimony and get baptized.  After meeting with them the day was over and we came in for the night.
Thursday:
In the morning we contacted until lunch.  I wasn't feel all that well while contacting though.  It was all because of nervousness for transfere calls.  For some reason this time I am super nervous about what might happen.  I think it is because either I don't know were I am going or I knew exactly and I didn't know if I wanted that.  Anyways you guys will have to read down to Friday to find out were I am going and lets just say It was completely unexpected and unpredictable.  After lunch we had a meeting with Petur and recent convert.  He hadn't been coming to church lately and we wanted to know why.  Well we found out that his grandma had been in very bad health and had died on tuesday. That explained why he hadn't been to church lately so we focused on how we can see our loved ones again if we keep our covenets.  We then went out contacting until it was time for English.  English went really well and I enjoyed it a lot.  We talked about the indefinit artical (a,an) because they ,despite being in third level, still couldn't use it right while speaking.  We then went contacting until it was time to go in.
Friday:
In the morning we were supposed to have a meeting with Toni again.  She came but only to tell us she couldn't come and to give us her new number since she had switched phones.  She could only stay for a little because she had a job interview that she had to go to.  It was really great that she actualy thought to let us know.  We then had a another meeting that fell through.  We then had lunch and then had our weekly activity with Vladi.  We taught him the piano most of the time.  After Vladi we had transfere calls.  So here is the big shocker, you could say also it is a first in our mission.  I am heading back to Ruse.  This is the third city I am going back to.  First was Stara Zagora, then Pleven, and now Ruse.  I am going to be serving with an Elder Babbit who I will tell you more about next week when I know more about him.  Also unlike last time Ruse will have sisters in it.  So instead of 4 elders there will be 2 elders and 2 sisters.  I am very happy with that transfere call and am really looking forward to going back to Ruse again.  After reciving our transfere calls we went to go see the Geogivi investagator family again.  The meeting was more like a goodbye party but it was alright and I am happy that I have gotten to know them.  We then came home for the night.
Saturday:
In the morning we had English.  I got into a little Physics discussion with my students and they were all shocked that I knew so much about Physics.  We then went out contacting for a while and then had lunch and language study.  After that we had our weekly Mutual improvment soccer game.  Almost nobody came,but we had a good time anyways.  Vera an old investagator of mine did show up though which was great.  I got to see her before I left and that she got to socialize with some of the youth.  We then tried to go see the Nikolovi one last time but they weren't home.
Sunday:
Church was alright, but we were stuck there for about three hours after church had ended because of some branch work.  We then had to pack because we might have to travel to Sofia monday and so we needed to be prepared.  We then went to the other elders' place so Elder Law could Weekly plan with Elder Walker who he will be serving with until his Greenie comes in.  Once all of this was done it was time to head home for dinner and bed.

That was the week and I am super excited to be heading back to Ruse.  I hope you all have a great week.