Dear friends and family,
Happy Monday!! :) It's crazy to think that I've officially been a missionary for 6 months! This has been the hardest most incredible and rewarding 6 months of my life, and I can not wait for this next year :)
This past week was a little weird, with it being the beginning of the new transfer and all! Siostra Craig and I were the only missionaries in Bydgoszcz for 4 days, and that was WEIRD! haha! We didn't have any Elder's, or our wonderful Senior Couple the Tufts! It was kind of fun to take on the world by ourselves for a little while though! But now, everyone is back, Elder Coutu has his new little trainee (Elder Rowley! He's awesome!) and things are back to normal :)
We did a lot of tracting and street contacting this past week, which was a blast! We're trying to come up with new ways to talk to people instead of just the usual, "Hi! We're missionaries from the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints! Do you have a moment to talk?" Because that just gets boring :) And it has been REALLY fun! haha! We've come up with some awesome "less-awkward" conversation starters, and this past week we had the BEST conversations ever! I just love the Polish people!
Side note before I get into my favourite part of the week: ....Elder Coutu and Siostra Craig made me TRANSLATE in Sacrament meeting on Sunday!!! With me translating, there was a lot of, "Uhh... Okay, now he's saying something about a mosquito...", and "She says there's a quote by Elder Holland that she really loves, that says...... something..." and, "Okay, now he's using a lot of really complicated medical terms that I don't understand, but... you get the jist!" hahaha. Oh my GOODNESS, it was so hard/nerve-racking/crazy/ahhhh!! But... thankfully I made it out alive, and the English speaking members didn't hate me after!
Anyway... Onto the best part!
The highlight of my week was definitely a meeting we had with our lovely red-headed friend Małgorzata :) I just LOVE her! This week, we met with her and were able to show her the film "Joseph Smith: Prophet of the Restoration". It was seriously an incredible experience. I love seeing how our investigators react to the story of Joseph Smith, because it is something so new to them. It also worries me a little, because Joseph Smith's experience is something that has come to mean THE WORLD to me while I have been on my mission, and I am always worried that it will scare our investigators because they don't yet have a testimony of it. But sitting there, watching that film, all of the worries I had about that completely melted away as I looked over and saw Małgorzata - sitting there with tears in her eyes. I felt the spirit just looking at her. By the end of the movie, she had gone through almost a whole package of tissues... It was one of those moments where you can't help but smile and think, "It's true. All of it, it's true." The film ended, and she sat there just crying for a few minutes. When we asked her what she thought about it, she just stared at her hands for a minute, then looked right at me and said, "...I want a Book of Mormon." I got teary-eyed, and in that moment, I couldn't help but think of our Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ, hearing Małgorzata say those words, and just smiling. We all hugged, and cried together, and it was amazing. She just glowed as she left that meeting, and Siostra Craig and I just sat there in awe of the spirit that had touched us all.
When moments like that happen, I'm reminded why I'm here. I can seriously feel the spirit of the Lord as if He is in the room with us, sitting right beside us. Little moments like that happen, and I marvel at how I could ever have doubted that His hand really is in everything. As we walked home, I smiled to myself as I thought of the scripture I had read just a few hours earlier during my studies:
"Blessed be the name of my God, who has been mindful of us: wanderers in a strange land.
Now my brethren, we see that God is mindful of every people, whatsoever land they may be in; yea, he numbereth his people, and his bowels of mercy are over all the earth.
Now this is my joy, and my great thanksgiving; yea, and I will give thanks unto my God forever. Amen." (Alma 26:36-37)
I love this gospel so much, and I really hope that you all know that. Joseph Smith really did see God, and His Son Jesus Christ. He restored the gospel of Jesus Christ in it's fullness, and how grateful I am for all he went through. Everything he went through for us to have this truth, for us to truly know our Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ, for us to have the fullness of His gospel, for Małgorzata to have that little Book she desired so much... It isn't just a story to me anymore. It's real, and I know that with all my heart.
I hope you all have another amazing week! I'm praying for you every day, and I hope you can feel the love the Lord has for you! He really is there. :)
Sister Craig's Birthday Breakfast!!! Our lovely friend Sister Kagele gave us some corn syrup to make homemade buttermilk syrup... best thing ever.
The cutest little Polish jazz band on the bridge!
Polish cars. My favourite. Ever. :)