Wednesday, January 2, 2013

December 5, 2012

Leaf Artist



Chapel in Zagreb:  ONLY Chapel in our Mission!
Srijeda (Wednesday) Prosinac (December) 5, 2012

Dear Kiddos,

We have had a good day and week.  We went early this morning with one of our most faithful members to purchase some food for another member who lives with his mother over an hour away from here.  We bought fruit and vegetables, bread and some meat and some staples (flour, rice, beans, pasta and milk that stores for several weeks on the shelf).  As we walked into the store, Zoran said, "I love this time of the year...everything looking like Christmas."  We have had a touch of snow and it is cold and Christmas decorations are up everywhere.  I thought about being home and helping to prepare some food and gifts for a Christmas family.  We left the store with our trunk full of food and headed to Otok.  The young man and his mother were happy to see us.  We went into their home and all sat around their kitchen stove where the heat was.  They told us of their needs.  He has AIDS and they have been struggling for a long time.  It was nice to have Zoran with us to translate.  He brought a Book of Mormon with him along with a reading plan to help read the book.  Dad talked to the young man about the reason for fasting and paying fast offerings.  He said that the funds are to help the poor and the needy.  As we fast two meals we give the money we would have spent on food to the Bishop to be used to help someone else.  And the amazing thing is all the donations are kept together and are used around the world to bless the lives of all who need it.  Then, when we one in need is back on his feet, he can pay his donations to help someone else.

The member receiving assistance doesn't speak any English but he does speak German in addition to his Croatian.  It was amazing to listen to Dad speak in German to him.  He quoted the 4th article of faith about the principles and ordinances of the Gospel, faith, repentance, baptism and receiving the gift of the Holy Ghost.  I thought about all the times Dad would help you recite the articles of faith while showering or while he was showering, and how he would often recite them in German.  And then I thought about Esther helping to save the Jewish people from being put to death.  She was told by (I think it was her father?) that who knew if she was saved for such a time as this.  Maybe Dad recited his German for years for just such a time as this.  It was a good experience.  Dad anointed the member with oil (in English) in preparation for Zoran to give him a blessing in Croatian.  Before the blessing Dad asked me to say a prayer in Croatian.  My Croatian is still lacking quite a bit!  Then we went with the member to a neighbor to purchase 5 meters of wood to help keep his mother and him warm during the next few months.  Dad asked for a receipt and everyone just looked at him and then laughed.  A receipt?  It was a good experience for all of us.

Tonight we have been getting the Church books figured out with internet banking that Dad just got signed up for.  We are happy to be on top of things.  We are going early in the morning to take a couple of members on a family errand about 2 hours away.  We may have a couple of hours to wander around.  We may try to find a sawmill that belongs to the husband of another member.  It would be great if we could have a visit with him.

Our District Conference Sunday was really a nice day.  We had 21 of us from Osijek.  The elders rode the train to Zagreb and we were going to have 2 members ride the train home.  We asked Božo if he would mind taking the train and he said no, that was fine.  When we tried to find him later to drive him to the train with the other man, we couldn’t find him.  We called his phone and he said he was already on the train headed back to Osijek.  He had walked to the train station in the rain about 3 miles and bought his own ticket!  Dad will write to you about the conference later.  He has gone to bed and I am going to join him.  Thanks for going to the temple together last night and doing all the names for our Branch.  They will be so happy when we tell them.

We love you all so very much!  Love, mom and dad/mutti and bumpa

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