|A meerkat. Aren't they just so cute!?|
|An elephant and me|
|Me patting a donkey|
|Wallabies at the zoo!|
|Me at the kangaroo enclosure|
Last week after emailing, we went to the zoo in Gdansk, hence all the photos! Of course we all went for the kangaroos ;) Sister Smith was super excited, I think it was her first time seeing them. And I was excited because I was able to lure one over with my accent and pat it through the fence :D We also had a pretty fun time looking at the elephants (one of them was totally dancing, moving its trunk and legs back and forth hehe) and the meerkats were pretty funny too! I've realised how grateful I am for animals- they make me so happy!
This past week we went out to a place called "Brzeżno" to find a former investigator family. After going to the house (no one was home unfortunately) we walked around the area trying to find people who might be interested in our message, when we found a man at a bench near the beach. He was polite and listened to us, took a pass-along card, said he didn't want to have lessons with the missionaries, and then we went seperate ways. Sister Smith wanted to go up to the shore for a quick breather so I stood nearby on the deck (I didn't want to get sand in my shoes) and the man we had previously spoken to came up to us. He saw on the card that it had a Book of Mormon, and he asked if we were affiliated with Mormons. I said well yes, we are Mormons! He then proceeded to ask more questions about us and what differences exist between us and the Catholic church etc. He was very friendly and we were able to teach him a quick lesson about the Restoration right there on the deck, and he agreed to take a Book of Mormon and said he'd be interested in coming to church! What was even more of a miracle after him coming up to us, is that another random lady came up to us having this conversation and started listening too! She unfortunately went away mid-conversation, but it was still a pretty cool experience to have 2 people come up to us and ask us about what we believe! It normally doesn't work that way haha (as much as that would be awesome!).
This week my companion and I decided to try something new- we both love to sing, and I play guitar, so we wanted to find a good way to use our talents in finding activities. There's a pedestrian tunnel (well-lit enough) with a good amount of traffic near our home. We had just eaten lunch and had small amount of time to spend before going out to a meeting with someone. So we decided to go to this pedestrian tunnel, sing primary songs and hand out pass-along cards. The acoustics were great and everyone was smiling at us :) We were able to get a few people to take cards, one lady even stopped to look up the website (mormon.org/pol) on her phone, and one man stopped to talk with us about our message of the Restoration. So far we've only tried this attempt of finding people once, and it was only for a short time, but in this upcoming week, we are hoping to try it with the Elders in our area, and with a 'free-table' where we put copies of the Book of Mormon, English class advertisements and brochures on the table for people to take for free (of course!). I'm hoping that this will help people be more open to come up to us (the power of music is an incredible thing!), and eventually lead to people taking the lessons.
This week we were able to visit a family member of my friend Stan who lives in Germany. He gave me the contact info for his sister-in-law who lives a half-hour busride south of central Gdansk, and so I gave her a call and she invited us over for dinner! So we went there yesterday and got fed a really wonderful, traditional Polish meal. We were able to speak a bit about our beliefs and message, and encouraged them to read the Book of Mormon for themselves to find out if our message is true. Unfortunately the parents weren't interested, but the daughter gladly took a Book of Mormon and said she read it. We were so impressed by the family's hopsitality and kindess, and although none of them are ready/willing to take the lessons from us at this point in time, it was a great learning experience for me, in knowing how precious and important member-referrals are. People are generally more open to listening to the missionaries when they have a friend or family-member in the church. (Of course that's not always the case, but statistically speaking, there is a lot more success that comes through referrals than from finding from the missionaries' own efforts). So just remember- when the missionaries ask you for referrals, know that they're praying for you to find friends/family with whom you can share the gospel, and know that they will treat those referrals with care!
Today we're thinking of going on a hike after emailing (the weather's getting much warmer, and the tourists have been flocking into Gdansk!) so I'll let you know how that goes next week if we end up actually going! This week we'll also be having Zone Conference, so my companion and I are very excited to be going to Poznan for that. Hope you all have a wonderful week :) Love you so much!