Monday, March 25, 2013

Slower Week

Hello family!

This week has been a little slower than all the other weeks of my mission (along with really cold weather), but just because it was slow didn't make it bad! Transfers were last week, so I went on another 14 hour train ride to Bucharest to pick up my companion and spend the day there. We arrived pretty early, so we had some time to walk around "Old Bucharest" and take some pictures. The buildings reminded me a lot of Amsterdam, and I felt more like a tourist than a missionary. When we got back to the train station, I finally got to meet my new

companion! Elder Groberg is from Bountiful, Utah and he has 3 months left on his mission (So basically he might be finishing his mission in Moldova). He's very talented with the Romanian language and is well on his way to master the Russian alphabet! I'm loving this zebra companionship. It's really pushing me to learn Russian a lot better, and I think it was the perfect time for me in my mission to have this happen. I feel a better connection with the people, and my understanding has drastically improved. 
On Sunday, the branch presidency met with all the missionaries and basically they want to improve the effort we're putting into rescuing the less-actives. "This branch used to have 90 active members... Now we are down to less than half of that." What happened? I don't know, but we're going to fix it! Finding seems to be going a lot better. Elder Monroe told me that they met a woman knocking that we handed a card to 3 months
ago, and her and her daughter committed to be baptized when they receive their answers. We're starting to see the fruits of our labors! There was actually one day where all the missionaries in Chisinau extended the baptismal invitation to somebody, and not everybody said yes, but it shows that we're all helping our investigators work towards baptism.

We had a lot of lessons fall through, and people not answer their phones, but we keep moving forward and finding people. Our first full day together, we decided to walk from our apartment to the church and talk to people on the way. It turned out to be a lot of fun! I was surprised by how well people listened to us and responded back
in both languages. We talked to a lot of Jehovah's Witnesses and two guys gave us their numbers so we could meet up later. One of those men expressed an interest in learning more about our church, and meeting with us. We met with Vitalli again yesterday, and he only speaks Russian, so poor Elder Groberg just had to sit and smile the entire lesson. Luckily, I had a recent convert with me to help out because I had the responsibility of
being the lead teacher. He understands everything we teach perfectly, and he said he'd come to church next week! But at the end of the lesson he showed us a clip from Passion of the Christ where He is being beaten, whipped, and crucified. It was so graphic that it was hard to watch, but it brought the Atonement to a whole other level for me... It made it more real... The suffering that Christ went through for each and every one of us is

unimaginable. He went through every pain, every suffering, and every sadness that anyone will ever go through, and after watching that video, everything that Christ did for me sunk deeper into my heart. The awesome thing is is that I get to share this testimony and these feelings I have about the Savior of the world every single day. I don't know why I never had this realization before my mission, but I wouldn't trade this knowledge for anything.

I wish I had a better memory, but my mind is running all day long, so it's hard for me to make my emails more detailed. I'll work on getting better! Sorry for not sending any pictures for the past two weeks too, my usb drive
was being stubborn... I hope you enjoy the pictures for this week! Thank you for your continued support and love. I pray and think about every single one of you every day!

-Elder Farnworth

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