Monday, August 8, 2011

Krasnodar!!! August 8, 2011


This has been SUCH a wonderful week! Full of SO many miracles and adventures and wow... it has just been AMAZING!!  I will try to express everything that has happened.... :)

After our wonderful party at presidents, which I'm actually working on sending a video to you right now... so I hope that it comes through.. Sister Ivanova and I went out to go and visit an old city.  There really wasn't much to see, and we only had like 40 minutes... but we wandered around and saw this beautiful church.  There was also a really cool view over a river... I think it was the Don with the big city of Rostov in the background.  IT was great to just get out and enjoy nature a little bit.  At the end of the day my head was really spinning though because I had been in the sun ALL day!!

Well, Wednesday morning came around and I got all packed up and headed to the office.  At about 4 we headed down to the voksal (train station) and boarded a train to KRASNODAR!!  It was a fun 4 hour train ride! Super hot... no air conditioning... but Elder Ness and Elder Haws and I just talked and our two Russian elders (Reingard and a mini missionary) slept! haha  We made it in to Krasnodar at about 8:30 p.m.  Sister Zamorina was brought to the train station by Dima and some girls in our ward!  I didn't know who was who as it all happened so fast and there was just lots of hugging and what not... haha  Dima drove us to our apartment and OH MY GOODNESS!!!  I felt like I had literally come home!  We live in part of the house of some members.  It's a tiny apartment, but OH SO COZY!!  The wallpaper is yellow with stars and moons on it, and it glows in the dark when we turn out the lights! :)  Our carpet is like one of those rugs that has all of the roads and houses on it... you know... where little kids play with their toy cars!  But it covers our whole bedroom floor!! :)  We have our room with a bunk bed and desk and bookshelf and a bit of an open space, a walk in closet, small bathroom and kitchen!  The members that live next to us are a single mom with 2 daughters and a son.  There is one door that connects our houses and it's SO cute as sometimes they just knock on it just to say hi and give us hugs.  My first night the daughter Margarit brought us over a little treat!  It is SO nice to live with members SO close!

 Wow!!  It is TRULY a miracle to be here!  The minute I got here I felt like I had come home! Sister Zamorina is WONDERFUL!  I LOVE teaching with her!  So many miracles have happened this week!  I do not understand every single word that people say, but I usually can understand what we're talking about.  Yesterday we had a lesson with a member.  Sister Zamorina and I didn't really have time to plan and put a lesson together, but I was able to talk and teach along with her!  I feel like I finally found myself this week!  In English I can say what I think and feel and teach how I would normally teach, but finally this week I feel like I found myself in Russian!  I can pretty much express everything that I want to say and how I feel.  Of course, it's with a very limited vocabulary, but I can understand most things and talk with people, and just share thoughts and stories in lessons!  Also, the members here are SO amazing and are always helping me with my Russian! 

A really cool experience happened yesterday.  It was fast and testimony meeting yesterday, so I bore my testimony and introduced myself.  After church I went to find and introduce myself to the members that I hadn't had a chance to talk to before church. I talked with one man, and I didn't fully understand what he had said, but he told Sister Zamorina and the elders, so I got the whole story... but anyway, he told me that he had had a dream about me.  He said that he had seen me in his dream and and he then saw me in church on Sunday when I bore my testimony.  He said that in the dream I had come to him and given him a big hug.  He said that he had realized and felt that in the dream I had brought the love of God to him and his family.  His name is Alexander, and I found out this week that one of our investigators is actually his wife Olya!  I feel such a drive to do the work and teach and I hope that i can use every second here to be and instrument in God's hands in bringing the love of God to the people in Krasnodar! I feel SO happy and excited and really hope that my Russian will improve even more!!

I just really hope that i can do all that i need to do to fulfill my purpose in bringing the love of God to these people!!......

We haven't had anytime to contact here yet, as we have been teaching lessons!  We have a wonderful investigator Zara.  She committed to prepare to be baptized on September 17.  She is 22 and has a little daughter.  I love teaching with Sister Zamorina!  All of our lessons have seemed SO natural and we just talk with them and discuss the principles of the gospel!  It's SO natural and we both just share and talk and laugh!  And most importantly the spirit is there and that also means that I can understand more!!

Love you all!

A video from the party at President's house.

 A better close-up of our shirts!!

 Us getting ready to board the train to Krasnodar!!

 Us and our signboards.  Elder Ness on the left, Elder haws, sister Zamorina and I

Katya, a new member and music wiz! We love her A LOT!! She is WONDERFUL!!

 Funny looking cat I saw in the morning!


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