July 9, 2012
It was so good to talk to Tiff and Mitch and Jonny and get a short report on the cabin. We were thrilled to see the picture of 32 of you all together on the shore of Redfish. We were happy and sad at the same time. Happy for all of you and sad that we and Tasha, Geremy and Greyson were not there with you enjoying the wonderful cold clear mountain water.
It has been hot as heck here--but we love it (at least Dad loves it. I would enjoy 75-80). I wondered if I should have told the mission president that we would be fine to accept a transfer to the snow-topped mountains--but we don't know yet where they are. We may get the chance to go to Sarajevo where they held the Olympics many years ago. We got through another Sunday, teaching lesson 40 from Gospel Principles with Danaja as the translator and with many others being able to read from the Croatian manual while I read the lesson from my iPad and mom from her phone. We are excited about the Temple trip and hope to be able to go with 2 couples from Osijek. We are doing well and look forward to getting lots of pictures of the Cabin and Redfish from each of you. We love you and we pray for you. Bozo came up after the lesson on Temples and almost had tears in his eyes and said how grateful he was when I said that we pray for people in the Temple and we had asked you kids and grandkids to pray for him. He said he would be praying for you and us too. We had several of the semi-active members to church yesterday. We had 13 members, 5 non-members (investigators) and 6 missionaries. One sister gave a talk for about 20 minutes--the last 10 reading a few lines from about 40 scriptures. Life is good and we are working hard and loving it and the heat too. We love you all and are so grateful for each of you. We are looking forward to emails from Alec and Jarod about their trip to Nauvoo and emails from all of the grandkids to do some practicing on the computer. We pray it is cooler there now and the fires will all be gone.
Love you all so much!! mom and dad/mutti and bompa xoxoxxx
This is an excerpt from a letter we sent to President Rowe:
We want to give you a short report on some of the visits we made with the Sister missionaries last Saturday. They planned a trip to try and locate 4 or 5 people and families in the area of Vukovar. We first visited a sister who joined the church in Italy many years ago. Although we could not understand the words we could feel her faithfulness to the Church and her love for the Saviour by her welcome to us, her spirit she conveyed as she spoke and the LDS pictures of Him hanging on the wall. She has some serious medical challenges with tumors and cysts. She communicated to us that a blessing with oil would be the greatest thing since her confirmation and her receiving the Gift of the Holy Ghost. I’m sorry to say that I didn’t have any oil with us (which won’t happen again). She brought out some olive oil and I consecrated a small amount and gave her a blessing—mostly in English. She said she knew the blessing was from God and she understood it. It was a blessing to us to be with her.
Next we visited a sister and her 13 year old son that the sisters had met and given two lessons to in the hospital in Osijek. The 14 year old son speaks English quite well, but his mother doesn’t. The son has read the Book of Mormon 3 times in the past 3-4 weeks. He had the Bible out along side his Book of Mormon. He loves both books. He read 2 full chapters (2 Ne 29 and Moroni 8) out loud to us. Both he and and mother said they believe it. We told him he needed to find a man who believes and could get baptized to start a Branch in Vukovar. He will work on that.
We next visited with a man who joined the church 10 or 12 years ago in Germany and now lives with his mother in Otok. They showed us their fridge. It was empty and turned off but they use it for a cupboard.
The Elders are doing a good job and are teaching quite a few lessons. They are getting a lot of help finding people from some new converts who were baptized in June and were called and set apart as Branch Missionaries yesterday. They have been teaching a fine young man who is scheduled to be baptized this Saturday.
We are grateful for the opportunity to serve here in Osijek and feel blessed to be here. It has been very hot and humid. At least one of us loves it that way and the other knows that the hottest part of the summer will only last a few months.