How are you all doing this week? It was great to hear from you all. Everything is going really well here and really starting to pick up. As most of you said, the year mark came and went pretty fast. No
worries though, you better believe that Elder Rackham and I had some cake and ice cream haha. But overall it was a great week. No complaints here!
The work is going well and really picked up here this last week. The Lord really blessed us with finding some solid investigators this last week and so we managed to stay very busy this last week. First, we found a family of three. Their names are Hakob (the father), Ripsik (the mother), and Khachik (the son). They are older and Khachik the son is probably in his 30's or 40's. But they are really great people. We met Hakob on the street earlier in the week and he brought us back to his house and had a meeting with them. The wife was pretty skeptical at first, but then when she found out that we weren't Jehovah's Witnesses she really lightened up. It was really funny actually. Everybody here thinks we are Jehovah's Witnesses, which most the time is not good haha. For some reason they are not huge fans of them. But once we tell them we are from The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints they all seem to lighten up. But this family is doing really well. The parents are a little older, but they are very kind and humble and we are hoping to make a lot of great progress with them this next week. We also picked up an investigator named Abraham who is 19 years old. He is such a great guy. He is really looking for truth and we've gotten really close with him this last week. He came to church yesterday and is reading from the Book of Mormon already. We are looking to meet with him a lot this next week and I'm really looking forward to teaching him. I'll for sure let you know how things
go with him this next week. Aram is doing great! He came to church yesterday and it just chugging along. We weren't able to meet with him much this last week cause he was pretty busy with school but he is going to be coming to a family home evening with us tonight at one of our senior couples apartments. So we are really looking forward to that. Other than that, the work is just moving along.
So, probably the coolest part of my week was going back to Charentsavan again! This is a really cool story. Do you all remember Knarik? The girl that Elder Steglich and I taught when I first got here to Armenia? Well, she is from Gyumri, which is up north, and was only visiting so she couldn't get baptized. But she read the entire Book of Mormon and into the Doctrine and Covenants for those 2 months we taught her. She was such a great investigator. Well, she ended up getting married to one of our member's sons in Charentsavan and now she lives there. And her and the son got baptized this last week! She came down and they got married about a week and a half ago and then they got baptized together on Saturday. The elders there had already been teaching the guy and they just reviewed everything with Knarik cause she we had already taught her everything and she was already living it all. How cool is that?! And the rule here is that you have to have an investigator with you in order to go to a baptism. So, we brought our new investigator Abraham and Elder Steglich and his companion brought one of their investigators and we all made it to the baptism Saturday night. It was so great. I sent some pictures from it. Long story short, it was so great to finally see her get baptized. I remember Elder Steglich and I just promising her that the day would come when she could get baptized if she would continue to read the Book of Mormon and pray, and the day finally came! I didn't think it
would come while I was still here but I considered that a huge blessing of the Lord that I was able to be there for that. The weather has been pretty crazy here the past two weeks. It had started to heat up and I actually went a few days without my coat, but then yesterday it snowed a ton. I was so sad haha. Oh well. From what I hear, in the next month it will be pretty warm here. I wanted to take the time and bear my testimony about Jesus Christ. I've been trying to focus a lot of my studies around Him and His
mortal ministry and it has made a huge difference. I've been reading from the New Testament as well as from the book Jesus The Christ, and it has been amazing the things that I have learned that I didn't know before. But I want you all to know that I know that Jesus is the Christ and that He is our Savior. He lived a perfect life full of love, kindness, charity, patience, and many more things. And we have
His example to follow. Although we will always fall short in our efforts to become like him, we are able to move closer and closer because of Him and His atoning sacrifice. It is because of His grace
and mercy that we will someday be allowed to live with Him, our Heavenly Father, and our families, if we will but do our part. I'm so thankful for the atonement and the love that I have felt and feel in
my life because of it. I know that Jesus Christ lives and that He loves us all. I hope that you all feel that in your lives and that you also know that I love you as well! I'm so grateful for you all and for the support that you give me. You're in my prayers and can't wait to hear from you next week.
How are you all doing?! I loved hearing from you all and am so thankful for the support that I receive from you all. I can't believe that Friday will be my year mark. It is really blowing my mind how fast that came. This first year of my mission has been the best experience of my life and I am so thankful for the opportunity that I have to serve. I know that this next year is going to be just as great!
Everything is going well here in Armenia. The work is going great and I'm loving it! I'll go ahead and fill you all in a little bit. So, Aram is doing really good. He is such a good guy haha. It is really weird teaching him in English cause I've gotten so used to teaching everything in Armenian. It is nice in some ways and in some ways I don't like it as much. But he is doing really well. He is still moving towards baptism, but we had to push his date back to the first week of April. We want him to be more consistent and steady with church attendance. Here is some good news. He actually won a weight lifting competition this last week! haha. He was calling us during the whole competition and letting us know how he was doing. There were only 5 people in the competition, but hey, a win is a win. He was really excited about it all. Today, we are actually going to go play basketball with him again, which I'm really excited about. Elder Seegmiller and his companion and Elder Steglich and his companion are
coming too so it should be a good time! We also picked up two new investigators this last week. There is actually a really cool story that goes along with it. So, about two or three months ago, we met
this lady on the street and she seemed really great. We were really excited to meet with her but we fell out of contact with her and weren't ever able to meet. Well, this last week for some reason her
name came back into my mind, so I gave her a call and she was so happy that we called. She told us that she had been wanting to meet with us but she had lost our phone number and didn't know how to get in contact with us. We ended up going over there this last week and picked her and her grand daughter as investigators. They seem like really great people and are searching for truth. I'm really excited to start working with them! Other than that, we have a few potential investigators that we met on the street this last week whom we are hoping to meet with this next week. I'll let you know how that all goes! Things with Elder Rackham are going really well. I really love training. Really I love teaching. It is so interesting seeing him go through a lot of the same frustrations with the language that I did and being able to pull from my experiences and help him out with it. This last week as I talked to him about some of these things I realized what a blessing it has been for me to be able to learn another language. Even though it has been one of the hardest things I've ever done, I realized the great blessings that it has brought me. It has also brought me so much closer to God and helped me to understand the doctrines of this gospel better. It has taught me how we always need to rely on the Lord, and how much of a blessing the Holy Ghost is. That we can receive that help and guidance when we are doing our part. Elder Rackham is doing so great though. I found that he does what I did/do a lot and looks ahead. He just wants to speak and understand perfectly right now, something I still want haha. One thing we both have been focusing on is just controlling the things we can control and never forgetting how far we have come. Just a year ago, I didn't know any Armenian and for Elder Rackham, just four months ago he didn't know any Armenian. Yet, The Lord still trusts both of us enough to do His work and serve His children. What a blessing! Yesterday Elder Rackham and I gave talks in Sacrament Meeting. Elder Rackham spoke about The Holy Ghost and did an amazing job. I had the
opportunity to speak about tithing. I took a few days to study tithing and I learned a lot of really amazing things. So many people look at commandments as restricting and something that holds us back. But commandments are really such a blessing. Especially the law of tithing. As I studied it, I realized that the law of tithing really gives us two great blessings. It gives us a way to thank our Heavenly Father for all of our blessings. I will pay tithing until the day that I die because I have so much to be thankful for haha. But it also gives Heavenly Father a chance to bless us. It is impossible to pay tithing and not receive blessings, whether temporal or spiritual. Obviously, that is not the reason we should pay tithing, but it certainly is something that we need to put our faith and trust in. I'm so thankful for the great blessing that this gospel is in my life. I can't imagine what my life would be without having this gospel in my life. Neither do I want to imagine that. I read a really great quote this last week that I'll finish this letter off with. It is from Elder Oaks. "Testimonies are better gained on the feet bearing them, than on the knees praying for them." (Alma 4:19) What a true principle. I'm so thankful for the strength that my testimony has received as I've been out here bearing it. There is nothing I would rather be doing with my life and there is nothing that I could be doing that could even
compare. A testimony means nothing unless it is being acted upon, and I hope you all have a great week of acting this next week! I love you all and am so grateful for your support!