Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Durres is Great!

This week has been awesome. To be honest it is always great out here.

The weather is heating up. We are all sweating like crazy. I think we are nearing the ciesta time of year. It is getting to the point where being outside at midday is killer. It is interesting here. School schedules are different for all different ages of children. Many kinds will have school in the morning, and then spend the day at home, and then go back to school at night. I think that must be super tough. I liked getting it done in one straight shot. School ends on the 18 here. I think everyone is getting quite excited for summer.

This week we started our free English course. We do it as a service to all of the people here. As well occasionally investigators are found through English course as we share a spiritual message with every lesson. 45 min lesson with a 15 min spiritual thought. We start and end every lesson with a prayer too. Elder Gray and I are teaching advanced English this time. All of the other times I have done English course I have been a beginners teacher. It is strange to talk in English around Albanians. We have a really fun time teaching English course though!

A is doing well. We had a great lesson with him this week. We had two male members in on the lesson. They did a great job testifying. Members really help to have in lessons because they can relate to the investigators in a way that we will never be able to. A is quitting smoking. We all fasted together this week. He has a great understanding and testimony. He is ready for baptism, and he knows it and wants it. I can't wait for tabacco to be a thing of the past for him! The members have really taken him in, and befriended him!

X and B are on the ropes again. They have to show their faith, and so far they just haven't. They didn't come to church again this week, and they skipped a couple of meetings this week. As sad as it is we may have to temporarily drop them or at least just back off a little bit. They are scheduled to be baptized on the 21, but that can't happen if they are going to fall away right away. The Bishop made that very clear to us, and I completely agree with him.

That awesome family we met is still awesome, but the thing is they are leaving to Greece this week and may never return to Albania. I don't know how people do it. The parents are just picking up and taking their family with them. It is tough on us seeing them go, but I can't even imagine how it must be on them. Moving to another country and not being able to speak the language. Leaving your friends and everything you have known behind. I am amazed by their bravery. It must be really hard. Both parent have been out of work for the last little while, and this is their only solution to making ends meet. Crazy. I don't think we will ever be able to comprehend.

We had a really cool meeting this week with two very educated 21 year olds. They knew a lot about a lot. They said they haven't found a true church. When I hear people say that it gets me pretty excited. They began to explain how they thought Muslims might be right, but how they had found a bunch of flaws with them. They believe in science, and proof. They told us Mohammed split the moon in half, and their is scientific proof that the moon has been split in half. That was one of their fundamental arguments for Islam. He had a Book of Mormon that he had received before, but he had never read it. We encouraged him to read it. He told us we can't be right because the true church will not consume alcohol. Funny enough we don't drink. They told us we can't be right because praying to saints and to Jesus Christ and saints is a sin. Funny enough we pray to God. They were shocked and amazed at how calm we stayed all of the time. They were amazed how we testified simply, and answered their questions directly but not pointedly or argumentatively. It was a testimony builder. They left shocked, and they each had a fresh Book of Mormon to leave. we read Moronis challenge with them so they know what to do.

This week for church we had a Europe wide broadcast from Switzerland. It was done by Elder Uchtdorf and Anderson. They did well. we had some technical difficulties in the middle, but we saw a lot of it.

Durrës is great. We are working very hard as a companionship, and as a district. The goal is obviously baptisms, but we have recognized that baptisms take a lot continued effort. Initially people have to change. We are trying to be in the right place at the right time so the spirit can testify to people through us. The church is true, and we can't wait for people to accept it!

Have a great week, and take Buddy on walks!

Love, Elder Stewart

Elder Stewart and Elder Clawson

They put a photo of the Saviour on their door just like in the episodes of "The District". :)

Cooking in the kitchen in the new Canada apron we sent him. He's becoming quite the chef!

We also included KD in the package we mailed. They shared it for lunch one day as a district and all loved it!! Little taste of home...

Even better with hotdogs! Wonder if they were beef....??

Heinz ketchup - It's universal!

At the barber shop. Elder Stewart says he loves going there and chatting with them! They went as a district all together.

Just before the cut. It actually looks pretty short already! :)
A cool experience!

1 comment:

  1. Some of the best moments in my week are reading the adventures of our missionaries! Thanks for sharing!! Lookin' great Elder Stew :)