So there's these things called "transfers" and they happen at the most random times for us, sometimes they don't even happen at all! This week after we spent all day Friday in Iasi (the second city I've seen in Romania) for Zone Conference, we were on our way home and President Hill called us for transfers. Now before I reveal the results, I just want to let you know that we are getting two new Russian missionaries fresh out of the MTC this week.... Drum roll please..... The two new elders will be trained by Elder Hammer and Elder Lippert in Balti while Elder Monroe and I.... are STILL together for two more weeks.... At least..... Can you believe that!? Elder Monroe and I have spent 1/4th of our missions together. It's a good thing he's my favorite companion! Who knows, we may even end up serving for another 3 months. It's okay though because we have a ton of fun doing missionary work.
So during Zone Conferences, they have a segment where departing missionaries bare their testimonies, and those departing missionaries were 4 of the 10 Russian elders. I got pretty close to crying when they all got up and talked about how important it is to love the people, and the love that they have for the people of Moldova. It's very bittersweet to see their 2-year missions come to an end for a group of Elders that have become my brothers, but I know that this brotherhood that we have will last forever.
As for the rest of the week, we had one day where we were planning for an empty day (which means that we'd be finding ALL day) and guess who called? Aba! I don't know why, but there are month long periods where we don't hear from him and suddenly we see him on the street one day and we're meeting up again. It was so good to see him, and he told us that he would be staying in Moldova for 2 more years due to a company change. Is this a coincidence? Of course not! We had a great lesson on Mosiah 4 with him and we talked about how there are so many lessons packed into that chapter and the last verse sums it all up, "O man, remember [these lessons], and perish not." IT'S SO SIMPLE. All we need to do it remember and apply these lessons that God has put in the Book of Mormon in order for us to not perish. I also love how no matter how many times I read the Book of Mormon, there's always something new to learn, or something that I've never noticed before. It really is the word of God, and has power beyond our comprehension.
We also did some service this week for a guy ridding his yard of weeds. Elder Monroe and I kinda started it and then Elder Garlick and Elder Koch showed up later with Дима. He is such a funny kid, and I have such a special love for him. There was also a man who was really drunk that talked to us the entire time about politics, Russia, America, and awards he received in his lifetime. He was even so kind to buy us cookies and juice! The thing that's tough about drunk people though is that anything you say to them they'll just forget it the next day. So we weren't able to have much of a gospel discussion. On Sunday, the Sunday School teacher wasn't there so guess who got to teach? We did! Luckily Elder Monroe is quick on his feet, so we taught a Plan of Salvation story that went terribly, due to our poor Russian, but investigators and members still participated and seemed to get the point. It was a great opportunity to improve my story-telling capabilities, and see what I can improve on.
Elder Garlick and Elder Jiles are going home to America this week, so that means Elder Monroe and I will be taking over Elder Garlick's area/investigators and that will keep us very busy. We look forward to it, since it was the last area we were in together! We'll definitely go visit past investigators. It's crazy to think that my year mark is in ten days, and that I've only been in one city for 10 months. But I'll still loving it, I'm healthy, I'm happy, and I hope you are all doing the same. Please keep Moldova in your prayers because the people here really need this gospel. I hope that I have done and continue to do all that God wants me to do. Have a good week! Love you!