So this has been a pretty good week! We got a lot of lessons and contacting in! We had some interesting experiences and a even an exchange (short and sweet!) It was a successful week I would say! Time really is just speeding up the longer I am here. It is crazy!
We just contacted the rest of the night after Emails. nothing really new there…
We hunted for some desserts for our desert we needed to make the next day for our meeting. We were seriously avoiding solicitors, they are all over the square O.o I feel bad turning them all down! We eventually got some Burek for lunch, They finally had meat again! My first meat one this transfer! It was so good, and so bad for me XD We came and had a district meeting, which was well. We contacted a bit, but nothing really. We taught english, same old bakas XD nothing new there either! We then went and bought some stuff, I bought a David Bowie biography in Croatian XD It is good language practice!
We came to the office to help Elder Halling with something. We had to drive some snow tires out to the dealership to put them on the car. So that ate up our study time! We did our studies afterwords. Then we tried this new american restaurant called Submarine BBQ. It was good except their hot sauce wasn’t very good O.o We ended up going to the Hallings for a “Party”. It was the missionary broadcast, like missionary general conference! It was really cool and we got to listen to a ton of the apostles speak to us. It was really cool for them to directly talk to us! We even watched it live!
We went to get an address from the office and then got some McDonalds for lunch. We hopped on a tram and rode WAY out to Novi Zagreb to teach someone named Petar. He was this super nice old guy that gave us fruit juice and oranges and just loved us! It was great! We came back and got lost….lots of Tram jumping XD We got back and planned english and then taught a class. Not much to talk about. We went and had dinner. I made some breakfast burritos, luckily they have tortillas out here 😀 We then came back to the office to teach a lesson to Marko again. He is really super awesome. He said that he knows the Book of Mormon is true. He just needs some time right now. It was sad to let him go, but needed for now. Hopefully one day he will come back.
We went to Nokturno for lunch. Thats about that. We waited at the office for an investigator that never showed up….after a while of contacting we went back to the office to meet up for our exchange with the AP’s. We looked around for a while for some book binding place, but nothing…. Then we all split up and Elder Petersen and I went out to the apartment to make dinner. We made some Alfredo, it was quite good! We then had to hurry out to the Amelios for a lesson. It was a really good lesson and they are progressing so well! They want to get baptized in the spring. So we just need to keep them progressing. Then we talked about getting sealed as a family, Mateo was so excited to get sealed to his parents one day. It was great 😀 We came back and had some marble cake, then just talked until it was time to sleep!
We did some studies. I taught Elder Petersen how to make cinnamon toast! It would be awesome to serve with him one day! We then went out to the church to clean with Igor. We switched back companions there and separated. Me and Elder Frandsen went to get some Kebab and Cookie factory for lunch. Then to the office to do some planning. We went and did our weekly planning. Then contacting….nothing….
We went out to the church. Sister Allred was super sick, so They stayed home and I had to play piano….yeah it did not go very well XD Oh well! Luka came and brought some friends and it was really cool! Elder Frandsen met with him while I was out at the Amelios. He is still looking good for next Saturday! We talked with Kristijan after church and then headed back home. I made some Ramen for lunch. Then to the office to do some numbers. I watched some videos, there was one in particular that was the closest representation to this mission I have found. (http://www.mormonchannel.org/watch/series/two-brothers-two-1/two-brothers-two-tommys-mission) That pretty aptly describes what these missions are like….except ours is still smaller in numbers than that….
We contacted a bit then I made some tacos for dinner. Mainly just meat in a tortilla…but it was good anyway!
This week was really good and full of miracles. I can’t believe that things are just going so fast. In the moment sometimes they feel really slow, but in hindsight, I do not feel like I have been out here for 6 months already….
I know that things get tough. We don’t feel good enough. We don’t feel we live up. We get discouraged. But I know that we can make it through any challenges that we face. As my brother sad, “Bad times can’t last forever. No matter how bleak it may be, It will always get better.” I know that we will always have the strength we need. The Lord will never give us more than we can handle. Only enough to keep us growing and progressing. We just need to allow ourselves to be changed. I know that we can endure. Just keep holding on.
It has been a fun week of teaching, and exciting moments, and contacting and all the cool fun things! I will now disclose my fun experiences over this past week! Bear with me!
Had studies as always. Then went to the MUP, Elder Frandsen is now legal to live in Zagreb! Whoo! We did some computer work and then went to the Sri Lankan food place again. SO GOOD. It is a fantastic thing to eat Indian food (thank you Shayla for introducing me to it :D) We contacted for a while and planned for english! We taught english which went pretty well, nothing super noteworthy though….
Wednesday: We contacted to the office then had a lesson with Igor! We talked about free agency and what that means. It was good! He was all over the place though O.o Balkans just like to talk and talk and talk and talk……we went to pingvin for lunch and had some nice sandwiches 😀 always a successful meal! A little later we came back and gave one of the Sisters a blessing cuz they were sick, and I did it O.o scary times! But it went well and I really felt the spirit in there! We waited for an investigator to come to a lesson, he never did….that night all the Christmas decorations were taken down and I was sad…So I made myself microwave pizza bites for dinner.
We trammed out to pick up Sister Allreds shoes from a repair place and some crazy guy was talking to us on the tram. “He had crazy eyes” O.o we picked up the stuff and headed back to district meeting. I had the lesson so I put together a quiz and talking about our purpose. It was a good lesson I think! We went out to the hospital to visit a member but their room was quarantined…so we left O.o we came and taught english and it went pretty well! Made some garlic noodles for dinner 😀
Zone conference has fallen into the mission! We went straight out to the church and set up for the conference! I played piano for a bit 😀 I can kind of play Hymns now! It’s a start! Then I got to chat with some of my MTC pals! good time! We had conference and learned a ton about repentance. It was great! then we had some pizza for lunch and practiced teaching the Plan of Salvation for a while! After the conference we cleaned up. Talked with a member for a while and got ready for a lesson. It was with our Investigator Dario. He just really really wanted to know about Repentance. It was good and a nice intense deep doctrinal lesson!
We went to the church to help Igor clean! It went well, there was another member there named Dragan so it was good! Igor is just a happy little innocent old guy. He kept asking questions about things in the Girls bathroom that we refused to answer XD We came back and went to Nokturno and I got a pizza 😀 european pizza, I don’t like as much as american…… we went back to the church for our mission coordination meeting. It went well and Luka is just awesome to work with, I see him and only think of Inego Montoya. Great! We then had a lesson with President Sambunjak and his referral Luka. It went fantastic and we talked about the plan of salvation, and it was a really great lesson! He is so awesome!
We went out to the church for our regular meetings. LUKA CAME!!! He stayed the whole three hours even! It was great! after church we got a ride home with the AP’s and mad some Ramen 😀 still the same here! (Actually a bit better, and cheaper). We went and did some numbers and such at the office, then went and gave our bills to the Landlady, and did weekly planning! For dinner I made some breakfast burritos, good times 😀
It has been a good week full of miracles even if it doesn’t look like a ton. Every second I have to be out here seriously is a miracle. I am so grateful to be part of such an amazing mission and to be doing such amazing things out here. I know this is where I am supposed to be. I know that this church is true and that I can make it through any hardship by holding on to what I know is true. I am so grateful for this experience!
I love you all so much and you all mean the world to me! Stay strong, remember that any trial has an end, any difficulty will get better, and any hardship will pass.
Well this week has been quite a crazy, successful, different week out here! I LEFT ZAGREB FOR THE FIRST TIME SINCE I ARRIVED! But I will get into that fun stuff later in my E-mail! It has been a good time full of finding, teaching, and being missionary like! Here we start!
After P-day ended we got some snow shovels and went around the city! We cleaned up a lot of street corners and made it able for people to actually walk. thats about it though!
My official 5 month mark! Crazy! We were walking around and a couple guys stopped us and were like trying to force us to drink coffee for a taste test! They wouldn’t let us leave for like 10 minutes! eventually we escaped and ate Sri Lankan food for lunch. IT WAS DELICIOUS. It was like this ball of strange meets and curry sauce. Then the guys offered us a free shot of Vodka O.o why does everyone want us drinking and such?? we politely declined 😉 and headed out to contact and do some computer work. We took our dinner break and I just transcribed lyrics from songs 😀 We had english class but nothing really happened. Then we got a GIANT hot dog for dinner 😀 yum! We had rain that was falling and freezing before it hit the ground…it was terrible…
We had some contacting in the morning. We went to get Burek for lunch but they were out of meat…so I just went and had McDonalds for lunch 😀 We spent our lunch hour exploring google earth and maps 😀 we contacted some more then we met the Karlovac elders at our apartment and I left with Elder Poore on exchange to Karlovac! The drive was about 45 minutes or so. Once there we got caught in a blizzard O.o but eventually we made it to the senior couples house! They fed us homemade Chicken Noodle soup. Good (Not as good as my moms). But then we went to the apartment and planned for a bit. We hit the streets and talked to some cool people whilst trudging through the blizzard! Back at the apartment Elder Poore taught me how to Juggle 😀
We did studies as always. Then hit the streets! we talked to some cool people, but nothing huge. We came back and made stroganoff for lunch as I analyzed my Hymn book 😀 We hit the streets again! Then planned english. Then the streets again! then we had english! Our class never showed up, so we stayed in the Sisters class. Afterwords we played ping pong in the “Church” (More just the upper floor of a building). We went back to the apartment and had a Palačinke party! We were putting some weird stuff on it 😀 We did have a snowball fight though!
Friday: We did studies in the morning. Then had a surprise apartment check so we deep cleaned the apartment. After that we headed back up to Zagreb! We arrived, said our goodbyes, and I was once again with Elder Frandsen! We got some Nokturno for lunch then to get some stuff at the office done. We had a lesson with an older Less active named Tihomir, he was super awesome and he was so easy to understand and it was great! We went back to the apartment and I made some tacos with my Christmas stuff 😀
We went out to the church to help Igor clean. It was great! Then we came back and went to have lunch at Jazz.Ba. A Ćevapi place! super good as always! That place really makes me want to go down to Sarajevo! We did our weekly planning which went great! Then we went out to meet with another less active named Mladen. He was super nice, just hard for him to get to church because of the distance!
We went out to the church as normal and had our regular meetings. TONS of less actives at church this week! It was great! I got to lead the music, so I was a lot more comfortable there 😀 We talked with the missionaries a bit then trammed home with Kristijan. Twas a good time! At the apartment I ate left over tacos whilst listening to Croatian talks CUZ I CANT UNDERSTAND. We went back out to the church and had a lesson with a Referral. It went great!! We showed him around the church and taught the Restoration. THEN HE ACCEPTED A BAPTISMAL DATE! It was fantastic!
It has been a great week! We saw a lot of success, I got to experience a different city, it was just wonderful:D I look forward to this next week! I want you all to know how much I love you and how much you all mean to me! You are all the world to me and it is so great to hear from you all every week! Keep being amazing and always stay strong and remember who you are!
Elder Bowles 😀
PS. If you listen to the song “Prayer of the Children” (great song) near the end of the song it says something in a different language. It says “Da li čujete sve dječje molitve?” which is Bosnian for ” Can you hear all of the Childrens Prayer?”