To Bring the World His Truth

To Bring the World His Truth

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Catholic Cathdreal

We live on the third floor of an apartment house that is adjacent to a beautiful, ornate brick catholic cathedral. 

In the mornings when we exercise and do scripture study I can look out my window and see people entering the cathedral. We also watch the street sweepers who always have a plenty of leaves to rake and stuff in big cans.  We've been told that they are pensioners who have to do it for their pay.

Here is my nightly view. 

1st Splits

We did splits with the young missionaries. We taught an 11 year old girl, and a couple of older ladies who have had rough lives, I could tell. We then met with an engaged couple who will be getting married in December. They speak really good English. The young lady has had problems at home and so is living away and doesn't get much to eat. We have worked out a plan with her. She is going to teach/tutor us Latvian in exchange for food. I hope she can eat my cooking!

We see lots of stray cats. We have been warned not to pet them because they have fleas. The people here love animals. The elderly generation feed the strays and they look well fed and are huge!

It's hard to know what to say when you are teaching a gospel lesson. I try very hard to listen to the spirit and say or do what I feel is a prompting. Teaching small and simple concepts are the key I believe. Elder Heaton is doing very well communicating by the language of love. He also does a good job remembering where we are going. He is definitely a blessing to me. Hopefully, together we will make a difference.

Jet Lag

It still seems like a dream, however jet lag is real. We both get very tired. That should all change in a week or two, we hope! We have enjoyed getting acquainted with the young missionaries. They are a very select group for sure. They all are very personable with strong testimonies. One of the elder's is from St. George and another from Gilbert, AZ. One left a football scholarship to go on a mission. Both are great elders. 

We spent the day watching General Conference with the ward members in Latvian. We had our
 i-pads turned on and read the talks in English and listened to them in Latcian. We tried to follow along. They had little luncheons between sessions which were interesting to us. Everyone contributes and they set it all up and down the middle of 3-4 long banquet tables. There was a variety of apples, oranges, bananas, cheeses, sausage that looked like summer sausage or bologna, bread and curious looking cookies. Someone had brought herbal teas. You don't go through the line and pick out what you want. You just sit down and start with the food that is in front of you. You could get up and pick up something else from another place on the table. We ate on torn in half napkins or right off the table. It all tasted good and they were a jovial lot.

The ward members are a little reserved but friendly. They have a strong branch with solid members. However, there are only 4 active priesthood holders and about 20 sisters who come regularly. The RS President is an Indonesian who does not speak very good Latvian but is quite good in speaking English. She is energetic and fun and I'm sure she is a blessing to the ward member sister's. She needs help getting the sisters to do their visiting teaching. That is what she would like me to help her with.

We have arrived.

We are here! We were very grateful to reach our destination in Leipaja (Lee-a-pie). We have been warmly received and helped by the missionaries. The office couple, the Terry's, brought us here in a mission van. We enjoyed our visit with them as we traveled through the forests, farms and countryside. The leaves are turning and we even saw some swans. We stopped at a Promo (like Costco) and we bought a lot of staples. When we got to Liepaja, they took us to a nearby mall and we were able to purchase a foam topper for our sad bed. It is now quite comfortable but rather close to the ground.

We found our apartment seriously lacking but it will work and we will adjust. Here are our closest's. One for the both of us.
It is not a lot of space but it is adequate.

Our apartment is roomy and large with bare simulated wood floors and no rugs. There is only one broken couch-no sofa chairs. So how do I study? I don't know yet. I just think of Ammon and the sons of Mosiah who suffered so much to bring the gospel to the Lamanites. I'm not suffering. We didn't have any glass glasses and just a very few odd plates, so we were able to buy some and that brighten's the kitchen. However we almost lost part of them when the kitchen table collapsed! Necessity is the mother of invention and we moved a long desk into the kitchen to use as a table. It works very well. Our computer is plugged in but not charging. So perhaps it is the battery or it just doesn't like the strange power it is getting. 

This is the inside of our front door. I thought it was interesting how large our peep hole is compared to the ones at home.

I am happy to report that the apartment is warm, but not as warm as the young missionaries who are serving here. The exiting sister missionaries who lived here before us, left things tidy with cute notes stuck around. They left a delicious homemade chicken broccoli casserole and a plant that brightened up my day! 

We will be going on splits with the sisters soon and tomorrow the branch members are watching a session of conference in Latvian Valoda. I am not discouraged-although you might wonder.

An answer to a prayer...

While at the airport a gentleman came up to us and asked where we were going. Come to find out his daughter was also called to the Baltic Mission-Latvian speaking.  He was so excited to meet us, and we were elated, too! He showed us pictures of her and he took one of us to send to her.


A few day's later we found out that this father is a friend to John Yardley. He told John that we were an answer to a prayer. What a tender mercy for both of us!
"We are as the army of Helaman.
We have been taught in our youth.
And we will be the Lord's missionaries
To bring the WORLD his truth."

The Lord has called us to be member missionaries serving in the Baltic Mission.

We reported to the MTC in Provo, Utah on Monday October 6, 2014

After a wonderful week of learning and the beginning's of many new friendship's we were released on October 10, 2014. Everything worked out just right for us as were able to attend our little 
granddaughter, Emily Heaton, baptism that very next day.

Following the baptism we returned home to pack for this new adventure we have ahead of us. On Monday morning, October 14, we will be headed to our new home away from home for the next 18 months.