Hello friends and Family!!
It has been an incredible week with many miracles and fun. On Monday we hopped on a train and went on a little adventure up to Tokaj. We only had a few hours to enjoy ourselves in this beautiful, pleasant town, but we made it back safely just in time for game night at the branch house.
After game night on Monday, I felt the impression we needed to walk home. In the center of town, I handed a man who was on the phone a flyer and about two seconds later he demanded me to wait. He handed me the phone and asked me to speak to a women who knew the missionaries. The man was so kind and works at the Catholic temple. In the past he had met with missionaries but it never went anywhere. While we were talking, three boys came walking by who are preparing to be priests for the Lutheran church. We talked about our beliefs and exchanged our information. The next day with the elders, we went into the Catholic Church to find the man we met the night before. He was there, and at the end, set up an appointment with us and one of his architecture friends. Sister Nybo was excited about that because that is what she graduated in!
This week we went on splits in Buda with the Sister Training Leaders, Naegle and Dinehart. It was so great to be back in Buda and be able to see the same people that I taught when I served there. We did plenty of finding, learned a lot and even ate at my favorite restaurant in Buda, “Trofeas.” Sadly, we were only there for a day. But, it was great to be back in Niregyháza getting back to work.
Funny things about Hungary:
1. They call crosswalks “zebras.”
2. When invited over to someone’s home for dinner, they will sit and watch you eat until you are finished.
3. Random strangers will get mad at you for not wearing a scarf if it is cold.
4. Do not be found eating an ice cream cone in the cold or you will get scolded and everyone gives you weird faces.
We had an amazing program this week with Marika and Oli, a less active family who hasn’t been to church for over ten years. They’ve been reading the Book of Mormon every day and they have come to church every week. Last week they announced that they want to get married now, so in the future they can get sealed in the temple with their daughter who is serving an LDS mission in Switzerland. This week we taught about the Gospel of Jesus Christ and emphasized more on baptism, because Oli has not yet been baptized. Let me tell you, the spirit was so strong and the feeling there was something that I cannot explain. Oli said, “I know this is true, I know the Book of Mormon is true and I now want to be baptized.” It was absolutely incredible and the spirit was so strong. I love that family with all my heart and I feel so blessed to know them.
While we were out streeting, we stopped to talk to a younger man and brought up how we teach FREE English. He was interested, but mentioned how he lives too far away in a little village. I told him that if there is anything that we can do to help him, just let us know. He paused and looked at me straight in the eyes, and said “anything?” Hesitantly we said “yes…” he then brought up the fact that he is a “women sculptor” and has a garden full of women and wanted us to be a part of his collection. We gracefully declined to be one of his models, gave him a Book of Mormon, bore testimony and went on our way. Quite the interesting day.
On Sunday we celebrated a holiday called “Nő Nap” (Women’s day). All the men go around and give women flowers and shower them with love. You definitely would have thought it was Valentine’s Day all over again in Hungary. In church I was asked to speak about influential women who have changed my life. I thought back to my teachers and coaches who have pushed me to be better. The women in my home ward growing up who were perfect examples to me and they helped me try to live up to my full potential. Each one of them has had the biggest impact in my life. I think about the women in my family, my aunts and cousins. All of whom I love and adore in every way. My grandma, the most loving, hardworking and most thoughtful person I know. My sister…who is the best mom, so thoughtful, hardworking and my best, best friend. My mom, who not only is my best friend, and my complete angel, but someone I would see get up every morning and dedicate hours to the Lord, studying and praying. She is the reason I gained my own testimony of the Book of Mormon. I want to thank all the women in my life and for your example. Boldog NŐ Nap!
I feel so grateful to be a part of the Lords work. I would have been so selfish not going and sharing what I know with others, after all Heavenly Father has done for me. Everything I have and love is from God and now it’s my turn to pay it forward. I love this gospel and the happiness it has brought to my family. The blessings it has been in our lives is indescribable.
Life will never be easy, but with God and His Son, Jesus Christ’s Atonement, that burden and stress we feel in life can be taken away. Heavenly Father is waiting patiently on the other side for us to ask for help and answer our questions to our life’s problems. “My children, peace be unto thy soul, thine adversity and thine afflictions shall be but a small moment and then, if thou endure it well, God shall exalt thee on high, thou shalt triumph over all thy foes. (D and C 121:7-8) You are never alone!!
Thank you all again for all your love and support. For your prayers and encouragement. God bless and have a wonderful week!
All my love, Whittaker Nővér