Monday, June 2, 2014

Warming up in Durres

(Editor's Note: This post is a week late. The week got away from us... It should have been posted May 26 - Aunt Carolyn's birthday. He doesn't mention Sara's birthday which was the next day May 27 because he told us later, that in Albania, it is bad luck to acknowledge a birthday until the actual day - never before!)
To start off Happy Birthday to Aunt Carolyn! Thank you for being such a great aunt, and supporting me out here. I have a lot of really great memories with you! I hope your birthday is great!

This week we haven't done anything too out of the usual, but we have been working super hard. The weather is warming up, and we peel our shirts off every night!

We have been working very closely with X and her Mom this week. X is getting baptized this Saturday. While her mom does not want to get baptized yet she is very excited for X. We teach them together, and her mom comes to church with her, The Young Womens program has really taken X in. We are very excited for her.

Our friend A is quitting smoking. We are praying for him, but we don't know exactly what to do. V Balla came to his lesson. V Balla had that crazy history with cigarettes, and he effectively quit on his own. We don't ave an addiction recovery program here so in the end it is probably going to come down to Astritis testimony vs his craving for smokes. If anyone has a good suggestion we would love it. A is awesome. He really gets the gospel. He just gets it. I feel like it is over a lot of peoples heads. For some reason religion is just such a distant concept for them that even when we explain it clearly they just don't seem to get it. He gets it though, and then on top of that he is willing to keep all of his reading assignments, and then some. He is a divorced man moving through life. I think he has had a tough life, but he has a big heart, and the Ward loves him.

This week we tried our special trick. It is called calling a bunch of random numbers that we have got on the street, and never been able to meet with, and just invite them to church. once again it worked, and a lady named D came to church. Some ladies really took her in, and she had a great time. I think I forgot to tell you, but last week we did the same thing and a young family came to church. I really think some people feel as though you a;ready have to be "in" with the church crowd to go to church. I think a simple invite to a stranger goes a long ways. That is what Elder Gray and I have been finding anyway.

Our companionship focus is families. Every day we pray multiple times that a family will be placed in our path. It is kind of a new thing. We have been trying to say very specific prayers. It has worked. The Lord has put a number of families in our path. While none of them have taken any huge steps yet we hav a lot of hope and faith. Our most recent find was a 11ish year old boy. while walking away from an appointment that fell through we heard the classic Albanian young boy English "Hello my friend" type thing. We started talking to this little guy. He and his friend were just hanging out in the road. We talked to them for a little bit, and got to be acquainted, and told them we would see them around. Yesterday we heard the same kid yell at us from across the street. He was with his mom and two sisters this time. We walked over to them, and had a great converstaion. They are quite the family. They have a lot of personality. We have their phone number, and we are supposed to have a visit to their house later this week, and then they said they will come to church.

We met with one other family this week. They could turn out awesome as well. It is a dad, a mom, and three little boys. It is a Jeff, and Lindsey type set up right now. They are great as well. One day this week we had to make a run back to our house in the middle of the day because our heater air conditioner was being installed. We have been living in our house illegally for the last two months according to mission rules. On the way back we literally ran into them. We gave them a quick run down on who we are. The dad was fascinated, and we got an appt with them two days later.

I went on an exchange with Elder Ashler this week. He is from Croatia. He is really funny. He speaks perfect English because he used to play a lot of online video games. It turns out video games are good for something. We had a good time together.

I got my interview from pres Ford this week. He is a great man. Sis Ford is so funny!

Have a great week. I love you all! I am out! Take Buddy on walks. Sorry I didn't have time to send pics this week. We went to Berat today for pday, and it cut into our email time. Sorry for any emails I didn't respond to!

Love Elder Stewart

No comments:

Post a Comment