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Monday, August 26, 2013

A year of growth - weekly letter


  This week was really good for us here in Hamburg. We have been working with some people who are making progress towards the gospel, and so we are happy as missionaries for that. We are still working with this couple. One of them is Spanish and has trouble understanding everything, but through the awesomeness of modern technology (Google translator on her boyfriend's phone), we have been able to make sure that she is following along. We typed in "do you know how to repent?" And she got really excited and started going off in Spanish. She finally spoke into the phone, and it popped out "you get baptized." We were both beaming at her. We then said "yeah, and before that?" She spoke into the phone, and the phone told us "you pray to Father in Heaven for forgiveness." It was a really powerful lesson, and they are both really close to making this wonderful covenant with God. Her boyfriend is also a really solid guy. He celebrated his birthday with us in the church, and he brought a friend who he had told about the church. We were able to talk to his friend about the gospel, and we should be able to meet with him next week- he seems to be a pretty awesome guy.
     A lot of the other people we are working with are not quite as exhilarated by the Gospel, but are still making some progress. There are quite a few people that are interested, but not quite prepared to make the changes, so we are working with them on developing the seeds of a testimony. It takes some work, but those are also sometimes the members that stay for a long time and have a very deep conversion.
     This week, I went on a split with the Zone Leaders. They live in our apartment, so we already know each other pretty well. I was with Elder L√ľning, who is in my group, and has been out on his mission just as long as I have. We started our missions in the same district, and so we were able to have a split almost a year after the last time that we did a split together. It was crazy to see the difference that one year has made!! We can both speak the language and teach the Gospel- something that was a bit harder for us last year. We have also grown in our knowledge of the Gospel. The mission experience is one that I would never give up.
     Anyways, I love you all and wish you the best for this next week. Remember to brush your teeth, eat peas, and look both ways before cross the street!
-- 
 
- Elder Eric Gibson
  Kirche Jesu Christi der Heiligen der Letzen Tage 

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

2 new brothers-- weekly letter


This week was awesome. The weather was beautiful, the people were happy, and Elder Becar and I got some serious work done. This week was especially exciting for me, because I was able to hold interviews with two people that are wanting to get baptized into the ward here. They are both so prepared, and we were able to have a very spiritual service for them after church on Sunday. The members welcomed them enthusiastically, and so it was just a great week all around for us.
Our investigators are not progressing the quickest, but we gave a few of them some very vital commitments, and so we are hoping that we will see some greater progress in them coming up. We do have one couple that is doing really well though, and they said after the baptism yesterday that it is not a matter of "if" they will get baptized, but "when" they feel they are ready for it. With the way that the woman was crying, we are hoping that it will be very soon for them.
This week, we had some really special district meetings. We had interviews with President Kosakduring the meeting, and so it was pretty awesome because we each got to get a much more personal experience with him. This mission is so big that we only see him every few months, so it was cool to be able to hear what he is wanting from us and how he wants the mission to progress. I was able to have a good interview with him, and he was surprised to hear that I only have 6 months left- he thought that I had a bit longer. I wish that he was right, because I love being a missionary.
Have an awesome week! I love you all and wish you the best for your righteous endeavours.


-- 
 
- Elder Eric Gibson
  Kirche Jesu Christi der Heiligender Letzen Tage 

Monday, August 12, 2013

When you don't have anything to say ----- weekly letter

Well, this is probably going to be a fairly short letter. There was really not too many things that happened this week. It is not like it was a lousy week. I mean, the work is going really well here. We have 2 people that are wanting to be baptized next week. But as far as something that would be of interest to family and friends, I am unfortunately lacking in events. We just had the usual things that I usually obviate in my letters because that would just lead to a redundancy from week to week. But I will explain the one awesome story that I have in scripture form:

 1.Wherefore, the things which I have written sufficeth me, save it be a few words which I must speak concerning the [ward grill on Saturday]. Wherefore, I shall speak unto you plainly, according to the plainness of my [Emails].
 2. For my soul delighteth in [Emails]; for after this manner doth the Lord God work among the children of men. For the Lord God giveth [technology] unto the [missionaries]; for [they] speaketh unto men according to their language, unto their understanding. (You should be grateful here that I don't do my letters in German)
 3. Wherefore, I would that ye should remember that I have spoken unto you concerning that [Grill Party] which [was held]... (Taken from 2 Nephi 31:2-4)
 4. Yea, behold, we did hold this party on the 10th day of the 8th month, according to our reckoning, and behold, a large number of investigators did come.
 5.And my soul did rejoice, for behold, many members had invited their friends, and family, and all other manner of people. And we did rejoice from the hours of 5 until 7.
 6. Yea, and we did give church tours, and we were filled with the power and the spirit of God, yea, and also, all those that were with us did fill the spirit of God.
 7. And thus we see that when members invite their friends, that the Lord will bless them in their work, for behold, so is the way that the missionaries require at you hands, yea, that you should only ask in His name whom ye should invite, and behold, he will answer your prayers. Amen.

Hope that you enjoyed it. Have a good week.

--

- Elder Eric Gibson
  Kirche Jesu Christi der Heiligen der Letzen Tage

Monday, August 5, 2013

com`o est`as-- weekly letter

Elder Becar and I were both very excited for this week because our schedule was pretty full of some really great appointments, but we were in for a wake-up call, because 12/15 of the appointments we had fell out. We spent a lot of time waiting on people to show up, and then calling them and not getting an answer. It was heartbreaking- I wish people would just tell us if they do not want to meet any more rather than just wasting our time. We have so little of it!
But the week ended on a really good note. Yesterday was one of the best Sunday services that I have ever had! All three hours were so edifying, I can understand German with almost no problems these days, and so I just got to feel the spirit of what the people were saying. In the last hour, Fast and Testimony meeting, we had talk after talk about the love of God and how the Church is so awesome because we believe in Eternal Families. Near the end, there was even one Sister who is a new convert to the church. She was on an austausch (exchange?) program in the States, and she was baptized. But once she came back home to Germany, her family disowned her and forced her to move out, but she gave testimony of how she knows that even though it is a really hard time, she is glad to know that she is never alone- God is always there to support her. It was a very powerful story, and it left a deep impact on me.
After church, we had a late lunch at a family, and they invited one of our investigators couples over. They have been helping us to teach them because the wife of the couple does not understand German very well, so we teach the husband and then the members translate for the woman that speaks Spanish. We watched "the Restoration" film in Spanish, and then had the members bare testimony. It was a very good lesson, and both of our investigators bore their own testimonies that they know that the church is true. We are hoping that they will commit to baptism soon. It is so cool!
The only other highlight I have is from today. I finished reading the New Testament this morning! Now is have read through every book of scripture except the Old Testament, which I am going to wait to do until I get home and have a study guide in front of me, so I can get all of the symbolic stuff. The scriptures are so amazing. They contain the word of God to His prophets, and I know that they contain the keys to obtaining Eternal life. I have never read them or studied from them like I do now, and I have developed such a deep love for them. I know that they are true, because they "persuade men to do good" (Moroni 7). I love you all and hope that you have an efficacious week, especially those who are going to be unpacking boxes for most of it (Mom/Dad cough-cough).

Until next week!


--

- Elder Eric Gibson
  Kirche Jesu Christi der Heiligen der Letzen Tage