Monday, January 30, 2012

Busy at the Gers

Hello again!

Okay, a few more of Dad's questions answered.
In the new apartment, laundry is like in the last with the usual laundry "stirrer" (aka washing machine).  It spins your clothes in water for awhile.   
Yes, we have hot water.   
No, there is no way to regulate heat in the apartment. 
How Mongolians in the gers take baths in the winter? .  .  .  I want to know so bad, but I don’t want to sound insensitive.  I'll ask this week.
This week began where we left off last week, trying to contact as many members and less actives as possible in our area.  On Tuesday we took a bus an hour outside of town to work in the farthest part of our area.  Unfortunately the addresses were even more out of order than usual and we had a tough time tracking anyone down.  So we just street contacted some people (it's legal as long as I don't say anything until we are in the house) and we were able to teach the Restoration a few times.  On Wednesday we went out as a district in that same area to visit a less active member on her birthday.  The day really got going when we visited a family who we contacted while moving coal last week.  By about 7:00 we were out of people to meet with. We were walking around and were ready to call it quits (owing to the fact that we were about to lose appendages in the cold) when we stopped by a church member's house.  They contacted a less active friend and we were able to meet with her and the member family together which was wonderful because it's very hard to get lessons with members in Khialaast right now.  The sister had had incredible faith to be baptized.  The only member in a family of shamanists, she's been basically disowned by her family.  We shared scriptures Mosiah 4:11 and Alma 26:27.  We invited her to church and she was there on Sunday smiling the whole time!

Thursday brought English class and then straight back out to the gers.  We were able to meet with the three sisters who we met after we met with the grandmother last week. (Are you able to follow that) and teach the message of the Restoration.  It was the best that we've ever taught it together.  We passed the topics back and forth seamlessly and the spirit was able to testify of the truthfulness to them.  When we finished we invited one of them to pray, as she did she began to cry.  It was a wonderful experience that really highlighted the week.  It was a moment that takes you back for a moment and helps you realize "that's right, this is why I'm here."

Friday was tough as we took our branch list into the far reaches of the area.  All day the addresses were wrong.  We would knock; someone would come to the gate and we would ask for the member.  (multiple people live in one fenced area) The constant answer was either they moved or they've never lived there.  Well....can we share a message with you?   Nope...  Oh well, it was cool because it was a like "loophole" tracting.  That is we weren't technically "tracting" because we were looking for people at those addresses. No slamming door stories, but tracting-ish none the less.

On Wednesday night we got a call from the AP's saying that my companion had been invited to participate in the Mongolian Priesthood Leadership Conference on Friday night (I told you he was awesome).  There was an member of the seventy there (Elder Gong) and all the priesthood leadership from Mongolia.  My companion did a demonstration with another Elder on how to invite people back to church.  The entire room was impressed when they finished.  It was really cool to sit in on the meeting which was in English and then translated.  We had a meeting later with a man with a baptismal date.  After that we were late to meet with the three sisters who I talked about earlier.  To our good fortune there was a Relief Society activity going on and they had gone in and sat down.  It was on family history and the sisters of the branch lovingly included our investigators in the discussion on family history.  It was so well done and such a blessing because we had been a half an hour late to meet.  Lastly, that night we met with a family who have been members for ten years!!!  That's pretty much forever in Mongolia.  They have a  son who served a mission in 2001 and two that are preparing to go now.  We shared scriptures on enduring to the end and reminded them that just like in Lehi's dream  (1Nephi 8:28ish)  even of those who had partaken of the fruit some still fell away into forbidden paths.

Sunday was our church power day.  Five hours of meetings and a fireside left us with no time to meet with anyone else.  The fireside was on the topic of the week -- family history.  President reminded us that missionary work and family history work are exactly the same work just on different sides of the veil. 

I feel like this week's letter was to "outliney" and not enough experience filled.  I'll try to do better next week!

Always smiling!
Elder Neuberger

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