|We went to the beach at Sopot with the elders last pday. There were swans getting fed bread, and occasionally they would come up to us and start hissing. I think they were mad because we didn't have any food to give them.|
|There's a petrol station here called Lukoil. It just made me think of dad!|
|Sister Smith and I waiting at the tram stop this morning|
So on the Queen's Birthday holiday we went to the beach! I felt so Australian :) Haha ok so I totally forgot about the public holiday anyway, but yes it was nice playing beach volleyball and sitting on the shore and spending time with the other missionaries. Afterwards my companion and I went looking for some former investigators (we've done a bit of that this week) and while we haven't always been able to find the people we're looking for, we've met some very friendly neighbours who we've been able to expose to the Church, and we're always finding more people along the way. It was actually a great blessing yesterday, the senior missionary couple here drove us to some former investigators' homes, and one family let us in for a few minutes to talk. We were able to leave them with a Book of Mormon (not sure what happened to the one they used to have) and we're hoping that in the future they will want to meet with the missionaries again to have the lessons.
This week we had an annual branch picnic/barbeque activity- it was nice to be with some of the members and there were some non-members there too. I wish I had taken photos so I could show you! Sister Smith and I made some cookies, we brought my guitar, sung some songs, played some sports, ate some good Polish kiełbasa (sausage) and spoke a bit about the history of the Church, enjoyed everyone's company, it was great :) We were able to get in contact with a former investigator, so we're hoping to meet with her family again soon and help them progress in the Gospel.
On Friday we went tracting in a more rural-area but we got a little lost. So we were walking through a field, and it's warm but it's raining. The grass started getting a little longer and my companion thingks that we're walking through posion ivy. So we go really fast and eventually find our way out of the field to some homes. I think it wasn't poison ivy, but there certainly were mosqitos and now I have mossie bites all over my legs! But it's ok, it was worth it because that night we were able to speak with a man at his fence about us, he was interested and took a Book of Mormon and gave us his number, so we're hoping to get in contact with him soon (probably with the Elders) so we can invite him to church and teach him further.
This past week we visited with a former-investigator in her home. She was very friendly to us, but it was a little sad that she wasn't open to our message. I mean, she said she was, but she was more just open to listen, but not open to change. It's an unfortunate common theme that my companion and I keep hearing from people- that they're simply too old to change. We try to help people see that the Gospel of Jesus Christ is all about change. That is why we are called to repentance all the time, and we must repent daily. We are always changing ourselves for the better, and there is always more for us to do, to serve, to learn and grow. How great it is that our loving Heavenly Father has truly reached out to us, just as He has done all throughout the past (God is the same yesterday, today and forever) and given us the opportunity to come to the knowledge of eternal truth. God gives His children so many chances to improve their lives- I am a witness to this because I know that God sends me to people here; missionaries are equipped with a calling and authority from God himself to preach the Gospel to the world. Every time I talk to someone about the Restored Gospel of Jesus Christ, I know that God is so very aware of that individual, and He knows that if they only accept this message, their lives will be all the more blessed for it. Not only improved, but they will be on the one true, straight and narrow path that leads back to our Heavenly Father. We all have agency- the ability to choose for ourselves, and the saving principles and ordinances of the Gospel are in everyone's reach. I'm so grateful for the testimony I have for myself about the divinity of this work, and the absolute truth that the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is God's one true church on the earth today. We have a living prophet, Thomas S. Monson. We have the power of the Priesthood- the authority from God to perform saving ordinances that bind us and our families to Him. The Book of Mormon is evidence of the restored church, and I found this out for myself, not simply because "I was brought up in this religion", but because I have prayed and communicated with my Heavenly Father, who has answered my sincere prayers and told me through my thoughts and feelings that this is true. I am so grateful for my parents for bringing me up with this knowledge, but I also know that I made a choice to believe this, and I walk by faith, not by tradition.
I love you so much and hope you have a wonderful week. I'm so glad that the family are all together (minus me!) keep lifting each other up and being good!
"We believe in being honest, true, chaste, benevolent, virtuous, and in doing good to all men; indeed, we may say that we follow the admonition of Paul—We believe all things, we hope all things, we have endured many things, and hope to be able to endure all things. If there is anything virtuous, lovely, or of good report or praiseworthy, we seek after these things." 13th Article of Faith
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