Monday, June 9, 2014

transfer day

Another week down, and also transfer day is going to be here tomorrow. Guess what... I'm moving. It's crazy to think that I have been here in ...for 4 months already. I'm so excited to go to another city but at the same time I'm super sad to leave the great people in this great city. The city that I'm going to to .... It's the farthest north city opened for missionaries along a big river that separates Bulgaria from Romania. I've heard that I'll be able to see that country from the distance and that the apartment is 12 stories up and is fun. One of the Elders here, Elder ... from Cedar Hills (I think I've mentioned him before and yea he lives close) served in that city in his 2-3 transfer here in Bulgaria I think and it's his favorite city I think.
There is so much going on here, it's hard to leave. It's interesting, there have been weeks that my companion and I struggled with trying to reach our goals for the key indicators but this last week was, well Wow! We have the most lessons this whole transfers, had some of those lessons happen without planning it, and other things.
Right now for my companionship, we have 2 investigators with a date, one for the end of this month and the other for the beginning of the month and we are also teaching 4 others that don't have baptismal dates. I feel like the same thing happened during the last transfer. It's an exciting time, I just hope that the baptisms will go through. The only problem is after the baptismal date, both of investigators are leaving the country. One to England, and the other to France. There are so many people that come and go and that are great people to meet with. It's hard when that happens because I really want to help grow the group here in .... It's still great to meet with those people and hopefully can prepare them for the church in the areas that they are going to.
We recently met with ... girlfriend ..., I don't know if I mentioned it last week or not. She is fantastic and also for church she has been coming and also brought one of her roommates. She is studying in college right now to be a elementary school teacher. She is fantastic. I wish that I could meet with her and ... more. The only thing is she is leaving also on the 20th for a Cello (village) close to Sofia.
Also this Sunday was the best Sunday since I have been here in Bulgaria. We had 4 of our investigators come to church which I've never had that many come before. Also the ... are back. They are a family that is originally from Ireland and live here and are retired because they feel like this is the right place to be. Bro. ... had surgery in Ireland and took some time to recover before returning. We had 17 + a baby at church. I don't think we ever had that much. To become a branch you need 15 people coming consistently for 3 months. It helped having the 4 investigators being there and also another that ... invited. It was such a great experience.
I've learned so much from my companion Elder .... I feel like our strengths and weaknesses are similar, so we've both learned how to overcome some things together. Also, everyone (missionaries) say that Elder ... is the best in the Bulgarian language than any other missionary. Both of the companions I have had in country are so good at the language. I might eventually get there ha ha. I've improved a ton this transfer in my opinion also. I've started to do followup phone calls which I haven't really done before so it's good. Some times I have no idea what the people are saying but practice makes perfect right.

I forgot to mention in the last email about the gardens here in Bulgaria. Basically, if you're lucky to have a very small yard, basically if you even have a yard, it's just a garden. The gardens are small, but some are larger than others and some look actually really nice. The biggest thing here is grape vines. Everyone have them, even for apartment buildings, they somethings have a vine that has grown to every persons balcony. It's crazy. They have structures to make the vines grow above the person, usually for covering the whole area of there little yard. They use the grapes to make RakEya. It's a Bulgarian drink that contains alcohol in it. The yards are usually around this size on average I would say, the area with the gardens. Some are a lot bigger but others are usually that size. I think a lot of farming is done in the Cellos (villages).
Here's another random photo of the sign on the mission home. I went to Sofia again for passport work and got my LEchna Carda. Basically my residential card for a year, then I'll get another or renewal when I'm here for the other half of my mission. It's kind of cool.

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