Monday, October 20, 2014

Hello everyone!!! 
This week has been really great.  We have met some awesome people who are from Africa and they are all bringing their friends to be taught so it was busy. We have one of our investigators set for baptism in November and we are going to set a date with our other one this week.  Hopefully.  I don't know if I have told you about Mary, but she is awesome.  She was in church on Sunday and she gave an awesome testimony about how she knows the church is true.  She attended in Africa before she came here.  She just loves the peace of the church and how she feels when she is there is like she is home.  It is awesome.  We just need to finish teaching her the lessons and get her all set up for baptism.  She really wants to be baptized, but she told us she wants to wait cuz it is a little hard right now.  With her husband trying to find a job and with just moving her to Germany a month ago.  But we just need to tell her that life is never going to be easy and it will always be one thing after another that will keep her from being baptized, so hopefully this week we can set a date.  And then we can also meet with her husband and get him set up as well.  They really are amazing and they have a sister in Nigeria who is a member that they talk to as well, so that helps a ton.  I am so grateful for the blessing of her coming into our lives.  She actually told the elders that she was a member already when they met her on the bus.  It is amazing how people come into our lives.
We also have another investigator from Nigeria who has a date set for November.  We are super excited!  She just came to church on her own with her two sons.  We are really praying for her that she sticks with her commitment to be baptized and that she feels the importance of the BOM.  She is also brand new here in Germany.  
We were reflecting on our week and I realized that we taught almost all of our lessons in English to all black people from Africa.  We are super grateful cuz they are all amazing, but it was funny that we are in Germany teaching people from Africa in English.  Made us smile.  It is super nice cuz they all have their friends that they want to bring with them to church which we love.  This week P brought her friend who lives by her and now we have another person to teach.  We are grateful every day for the Lord preparing his people and sending them to us.  Thank you for your prayers as well.  They help so much
We also met a cute girl from Africa as well, but she speaks really good German.  Which is good, cuz I'm losing some of my practice with all our English lessons.  She is really amazing and she makes me speak.  She just looks at me and asks my thoughts so I really have to make sure I know what is going on.  I can't just sit back and pretend like I understand.  :)
This week we had an interesting experience with one of our investigators.  We showed up to a lesson with her and she had a friend there.  Usually we don't mind, but we walked in and he has this huge cross necklace and all these books set out in front of him and tons of paper work.  We start off with a prayer and ask our investigator if she has any questions.  She said "no, but he does" and she just starts laying into us.  Saying we believe in multiple gods and that we are against the Bible and he wanted to compare our version of the bible with his.  We simply told him that we are not forcing anyone to do anything and that we invite people to pray and get their own answer.  He then said that prayer was not reliable cuz even Satan can be disguised as a spirit and he can convince you to do things.  Then he told us we were a church of the devil and that if an angel came down and spoke to him he wouldn't believe it cuz the bible says that you shouldn't believe any new religion.  I finally just turned to my companion and said "I'm ready when you are.  We don't need to stay here"  I then told our investigator if she had any questions or wanted to meet with us again she could call.  We both walked out of there a little angry and frustrated and wondering what the point was.  After I took a moment to calm down, I realized 1. how funny the experience was, and 2. how sad it is that he thinks this way.  One day maybe his heart will be softened.  But I can look back now and smile at the experience even though I don't fully understand why and I hope one day he will take some time to listen.  He just wanted to argue and said the bible says that we should contend for the truth.  But I didn't want to stay there with him.  It was interesting.  :)  
That was the exciting part of our week.  We have quite a few people to teach and they are doing well.  I am so grateful.  We are constantly trying to find new people to teach and bring to the gospel.  This work is amazing and I am so grateful to be here even though it is hard.  Love and miss you all tons. 
So transfers are next week for me.  We had a 7 week transfer this time which was a little unusual.  They are normally 6 weeks.  So we will transfer next week, or stay.  We find out in 3 days so I will let you know next week. Love and miss you all so much.  Don't know what I would do without you.  I am so blessed.  Thanks for all your support and prayers.  I love Monday's as well.  :)
Sister Poll

Sunday, October 19, 2014

I am so glad that things are going well around the farm.  I really miss being there and helping out.  You have no idea.  I had a dream this week about a cow giving birth and it had 2 extra legs.  Dad called it a raptor calf. It was really really weird. Just goes to show how the mission changes a person.  haha.  I really do miss it though.  I see a person with a dog here and I just want to ask if I can do something for him.  And ask if he is healthy and what not.  But I refrain.  I really miss my job a ton.  So I know that is for sure what I am going to do when I get back.  It is amazing how much you appreciate something when it is gone.  Just like I appreciate all of you so much more now that I can't just call anytime.  I love you all a ton.
Stuttgart was interesting.  It was like a big carnival.  Hard to go there and be a missionary cuz we can't ride anything.  But it was cool to see the people all in liederhosen and drundel.  (the dresses that the girls wear).  Something else really funny happened actually.  We had an investigator with a baptism date in November, but she is kind of mentally handicapped as well, so we were going slow.  She is the one that is also meeting with the Jehovah Witness.  So my companion was talking with someone and we got a phone call.  I decided to be brave and answer.  And next thing I know someone is yelling at me in German and I have no idea why.  I just said I am so sorry my German is not good could you repeat that?  So then I got yelled at again.  Then I told her I still didn't understand and that my companion had really good German an would talk to her.  Then she hung up.  We called her back and it turns out she was the Jehovah witness teaching Marion and she told us that Marion never wants us to come back and visit again.  So then we called Marion and she said the same thing.  That her friend ( the Jehovah witness) told her that it wasn't a good idea and to please never come back.  So that was an interesting moment in the mission.  Phone conversations are so much harder than real people.  I can't read expressions when I am on the phone.
We had zone conference this week and it was amazing.  We went to Munich and President Kohler taught us.  It was so nice to see them again and we talked about our goal of one baptism in every ward before the end of the year.  I am really excited.  This week a woman on the bus stopped the elders and told them that she was a member from Nigeria and she wanted to come to church.  Since she is a woman the elders just had us go and visit her.  Turns out she is not a member but really wants to be baptized.  Her sister in a member in Nigeria and she went to church a few times with them there.  We are going to get a date set for her soon.  Turns out she hasn't ever had any discussions, but we will fix that problem.  :)  She is amazing.  She also has this cute little 2 month old black baby.  I am so tempted to break the mission rule and hold him.  It is so hard not to hold kids.

Earlier this week I had gotten a letter from Danielle and she was telling me a little more about her companion. I asked her what her companion does while she is writing letters home.

 So all of her family is Buddhist and so she is the only member.  She is from a really small town in Mongolia and her family doesn't have any email.  So she can't talk to them every week.  She was glad that they were able to work something out for Skype on mothers day.  And she sends them letters every week, but they don't write back.  She has been a little down about it for the past week and I feel bad cuz I don't know what to do.  But luckily there are members from her past areas that email her and her past companions do as well.  Then she watched Mormon messages.
Her brother met the missionaries on the street and they came to their house.  Her brother ended up not being interested but she was.  At first they were not supportive at all, but then they couldn't find anything bad about it and it made her happy so they are OK now.  But they weren't really sure about her going on a mission.  the ward is helping her pay for it.  So she is always saying that we need to do more so she feels like she is doing her part in what they are doing for her.  Which is super nice that she is so dedicated.  Although sometimes I wish we had a little more fun.  She is a little serious.  But I told her that this week and she has totally lightened up.  I just told her, that I wasn't really having fun and I needed us to not be so serious cuz it was killing my attitude.  So now we are like best friends and I love her so much more.  And we are so much better teaching together and I am happier.  So I am learning about the power of communication.
Well time to go. Love you tons
Sister Poll

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Ahh, I love Monday's. They are so awesome cuz I get to hear from all of you. I am so greatful for all the suport that I get from you. I don't know how I got so blessed, but I am eternally greatful.   
Conference was amazing!!! I don't think that it has ever gone so fast. I got to see the women's conference, but it was in German since we had an investigator there. I had a bad attitude about it at first cuz I really just wanted to watch in English cuz I felt like I really needed conference, but then I realized that I can watch it later and I should be jumping for joy to have an investigator there. How selfish was that? Obviously I needed to learn that lesson. But we also got to watch both Saturday sessions and Sunday morning all in English. And it was amazing. (Mom I would love it if you would send me a copy when it comes. I am sad we didn't get to see the last session, but I can watch it online on P-day) I loved President Eyering as well as President Monson. I am so greatful for what was said. It is truely inspired. We had also three other investigators come to the other sessions which was amazing. One of them is a girl named Thresa and she is from Ghana. She is here with her 2 year old son and she has been taking the lessons for a couple of months now. It has been a little struggle cuz she just keeps saying that it doesn't matter what church is true, all she wants is to come closer to Christ. She is also taking lessons from the Joehova's Witnesses so that is interesting as well. But she is really progressing. This Sunday she told us she wouldn't be able to come cuz she was going to church with her mother in law, but then she called us on Sunday and said, "I was reading the Book of Mormon this morning and just thought, I need to go to church with the sisters today" What A MIRACLE!!! And then in conference (saturday afternoon session) she said it was really great. Everything they said was true, it is just hard to do. She is separating from her husband and she said that she finds it really hard to love him as Dallin H. Oaks was talking about. But she really liked conference so I am greatful. I am praying that she feels a true answer from God that the church is true and that she will continue to progress and read the BOM like she has been. She is amazing.    We have an investigator with a baptisimal date set, but she is kind of difficult. We are having the same problem that Blake has. She is so excited about everything, but we can't tell if she fully understands what we say. Also she hasn't been to church yet. She keeps coming up with excuses, but she did quit drinking coffee, so that is some progress. When we go into her house all the walls are coved in pictures of everything from singers to actors to landscapes and dogs and cats and everything. It is kind of crazy how many pictures she has. But we want to make sure that she understands everything and is coming to church before baptism. So we have a date set for November 8th,, but we are not sure if she will make it. So maybe pray that she will come to an understanding and want to come to church.
I haven't heard anything about this meet the mormons video. It sounds really interesting. You will have to let me know about it. I hope that it helps all the missionaries around the world. 
I am glad that you enjoyed conference and that you enjoyed eating afterwards. :) I miss that about the womens conference, watching with those I love and eating after. :) I'm sure that you will accomplish all that you have to do before winter. I am a little scarred for winter to hit here. I need to go and buy some boots and a coat and I have no idea how cold it is going to get. We actually this week went and did some service for this lady who has a huge garden. She is amzing and she sent us home with some apples from her tree. We picked grapes, apples and other things that she has. Plus she has tons of flowers as well. Her garden is really pretty. She is awesome cuz she talks to me even though I don't understand and continues to talk nice and slow. We were doing some cherades on saturday. But she is great cuz she talks really slow and when I don't get it she just says it again. And most people when they know that I don't understand will stop talking to me, but she doesn't. It was really a great day though. We talked a lot about her dog, at least I think we did. :) Which was really nice. I really miss my job way more than I thought possible. I see a dog here and I totally loose focus. My companion is always asking "So was that a pretty dog then" Its kind of funny. She keeps telling people that I am a vet or an animal whisperer though which I told her she has to stop. It is weird and also they start asking me questions which I 1 can't understand and 2 can't answer anyway cuz I'm not a vet...
Tell Trish I say hello. I am glad that she is back and safe. Tell her to work out the horses for me so that when I come back they are still in shape. :)
I am really excited for this week. We have zone conference in Munich and I am super excited to go back and talk with President Kohler and be taught by him. Other than that I don't think we really have anything too exciting this week. We are going to Stuttgart today to look around Oktober Fest which should be fun. I am always excited to do something fun for p-day. I really enjoyed conference and I hope you all did too. 
I love you all and think of you always. You are my strength and I know that I am loved. Thank you so much for all your support and I hope that you are all well. I know that you are all being blessed and I am greatful that God is taking care of you while we are gone. He can do a much better job of it than I could if I was there, and that brings me comfort. I miss you all.
Sister Poll