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Monday, October 22, 2012

Hey Family and Friends, This week was definitely a stretch German-wise, and I am actually really happy with the results. On Tuesday, my companion and I gave a lecture for a missionary training meeting, in which the Zone Leaders asked that we do the whole thing in German. We did a pretty good job, and I am very happy that I get to have a German companion because he helped me make sure that I was explaining everything correctly for that. Of course he did almost flawlessly, but he has had about 20 years to work on it. Our lecture was about trying to invite our investigators to baptism on the first lesson so that we could help them receive the restored gospel with better focus and purpose. On Sunday, I had to give a 15 minute talk to the Branch about General Conference and what really stood out to me. Of course, due mainly to the fact that I am serving here, that also had to be auf Deutsch. That also turned out really well, but mostly because I spent the entire week pouring over my notes and rewriting it 3 times before finally letting my companion at it to perfect the German. The members said that they were surprised that I have such good German even though I've been out in Germany since April. I credit it to two things: awesome companions that have helped me a lot, and the spirit and gift of tongues that come with Him. I have learned that when I am completely worthy of the Holy Ghost that learning and applying the language comes 200% more easily. Other than that, we had a pretty fun week. If none other adjective applies, I think that 'small' is the best one to describe Prenzlau. We have well under 20,000 people living her, so we get to say hi to the same people on the streets everyday, and everyone else has already had the missionaries try to stop them a few times over in the past few years. It makes tracting pretty hard, but we are planning on heading out to the other, smaller towns in our area to get a teaching pool. Right now the number of progressing investigators is 2, in which both of our lessons with them fell out last week, so we might be down to a little lower than that this coming week- a major contrast to the work in Goerlitz. But we have some really good appointments set up so I'm keeping my hopes high and my disappointment locked up tight. Okay, so here's the lowdown on Elder Primas, my new companion. First of all his name is in-and-of-itself pretty awesome, because "prima" in German means "great." He was born and raised in Munich, Germany, so his house is only a few train connections away from us. He has amazingly good English, so much so that he wants to speak in it more than his mother language! He comes from a family of 5, with two younger sisters. His mom is actually one of the people that helps to translate the Liahona into German, and his dad used to work for Mercedes-Benz. Elder Primas is pretty funny, especially whenever I forget that he is German and so he will say something that makes absolutely no sense to me, and then I'm like "wait...what?" He is about as tall as I am, so we both look like towers as we are walking down the streets. As for the ward, we have about 15 active members that come every week, and the Branch President is a member from another ward in the District (we do not have enough members for a Stake quite yet). They are some really solid members though, including one sister that loves the missionaries and keeps wanting me to talk because she thinks that my "r's" sound funny. She used to be the owner of the missionary apartment a few years ago so that is the main reason she likes us so much, I think. Thanks everyone for the letters that you have been sending, and I am hoping to be able to get some responses sent soon now that I do not have to spend the whole week writing a talk. Congrats to the Kickery's for their baptism; I am so proud of them! I wish everyone a great one and you and you are all in my prayers!

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