Monday, November 21, 2011

Transfer 17, Week 1 (hehehehe)

Hi everyone!
So, this is my last email home from Hungary.....This last week was pretty uneventful.....well, maybe that's just because of Wednesday...our landlord scheduled someone to come over and check something, but couldn't give us a specific time, so we stayed in the apartment all day...kind of ridiculous, but I got some stuff ready for packing. The rest of the week was pretty normal...we went with the other elders to verpelét to visit a family...they are way cool, we had a paraszt dinner, which means that they brought out a ton of bread, chopped up vegetables, cheese and meats, and we each had a knife, so you just kind of stabbed whatever you wanted, threw it on your bread and ate it. It was super fun, and the kolbász was actually theirs, homemade, and it was sooooo good! We also whipped a bit becuase the dad is learning how to make whips, so that was pretty fun.
That's about it for last week. Not too much out of the ordinary....this coming week should be interesting, we'll just be hanging out today, tomorrow i'll be packing, we have a program in the evening at 5, then thanksgiving dinner at the Scott's apartment at 7:00 with a gentleman from english class and his wife. That should be really cool. then, on Wednesday, Elder Pendleton and I will be going to Budapest, he will get Elder Allen (not the one i served with, a younger one), and I will stay in Budapest. I'll just kind of piddle around for a while, make a pie :) then have a round table discussion with President, departing interviews, departing dinner, departing testimonies, then one last drive around Budapest. Then, we'll fly out thursday morning. I think Elder Miller and I are going to have a long wait at the airport, our flight is 2 hours later than the sisters', but i think we still have to be there when they are....ah! and then I'll be home on Thursday, not quite sure what all's on the schedule for Friday and Saturday, but I believe on Sunday Elder Miller and I are speaking, followed by a youth fireside that evening, if I understand yeah, that should be our week.
I hope you all have a blast, and I'll be seeing you soon! It's been an amazing two years!
Elder Murray

Monday, November 14, 2011

Transfer 16, Week 6 Nov 14, 2011

OH boy
So, this past week was pretty much same old same old. Well, on Monday, we went to Budapest to get Elder Pendleton registered. Our train was supposed to get to Budapest at around 8:00, but arrived closer to 9 because of an accident. we got to the mission home super late, the group had already left, so we drove out to the hivatal, dropped him off, then came back to the mission home. Then, i went with sister bagozzi and Sister Johnson to the nagy piac to buy some souvenirs and stuff, then we met up with Sister Smith for lunch. After that, we went to Szent István's basillica, which is a huge catholic cathedral in Pest. it was way cool . in the back, they have the chapel of the holy right hand, and inside is the hand of Szent István, the first christian king of a somewhat united Hungary. Kind of cool. kind of nasty (it's about 1100 years old. or something like that).
After that, we came back, and on Tuesday we had splits with the APs. It was super fun, we went tabling and gave out a ton of Book of Mormons. Elder Pendleton and I got super into it, so the rest of the week was pretty much all just tabling. It was a lot of work, but we saw quite a bit of success from it. super fun.
That's really about it. On Sunday, three of us missionaries gave talks. Elder Pendleton was first, and he did a really great job, I was pretty impressed with him. Then was Elder Clavel and he did a really good job too. I was last, i kind of got confused with the time, so i ended five or ten minutes too early, but Elder Scott got up to bear his testimony at the end, so it was all good. My talk was pretty much just about my mission, which was cool, because I think that a lot of lessons we learn in life aren't actually learned and cemented in our minds until we actually look back and reflect on our experiences. It was a way cool opportunity.
so, that's about it. I guess I'll talk to you all next week!
Elder Murray
ps i don't know how weather is back home, but it's interesting here. We have had sun all year round, starting from January. From March to September, it was pretty warm. It is now still the same look, no clouds in the sky, but we've been getting down to freezing pretty consistently. Kind of ridiculous. so yeah, just thought i'd throw that in.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Transfer 16, Week 5 - Nov 8, 2011

Hi everyone
Oh my gosh, not even going to talk about the thing that just popped into my head as I was typing that subject line.
Things are going well here in Eger. We don't have much time today because we just dropped in to email real quick, so I'll give a quick recap of our week.
Monday was really long. We spent most of it with the Scotts looking up inactive members, but we had no success except one of them told us to come back next week. So, we'll see with that.
Tuesday was super awesome - we had a super P-Day, we just stayed at the branch house, watched a few movies and played a board game. It was a very relaxing day, and it was nice to just be able to all get together and have fun.
Wednesday was good. We went in to Budapest for zone conference, which, looking back, seems like it was only a few minutes long. It was just a normal zone conference, I got to introduce Elder Pendleton (did a terrible job of it too, hope he doesn't hold it against me :) and then at the end Elder Miller, Elder Diamond, Sister Wright and I all gave our departing testimonies. Elder Diamond actually goes home next transfer, but it's before the zone conference, so he gave his during this one. Yeah, it was pretty much one of my saddest moments on my mission, just looking out at people I have served with and thinking back on my mission and the things I have learned. that last part was actually happy, and I'm grateful for the things i've learned. but, i'm so sad that i won't see so many of the good friends i have made, even though it'll just be for 21 months or so at the longest. It's just hard to imagine life without so many of these people. It was difficult. Afterwards, Elder Clavel and I rode the train home (Elder Hommes and Elder Pendleton went home early with the Scotts to make it in time for English class). It was a long day. Other than that, kind of an average week. I had been signed up to speak in church the Sunday before I go home, but it got moved up a week, so i'll be speaking this Sunday on the most memorable moments/experiences of my mission. I hope i can keep it together for the whole duration. yeah. During church, president and Sister Baughman actually ended up coming, so i translated the testimonies for them. then, afterwards, president held a few interviews with some people who would like to get a patriarchal blessing, so i had to translate in those as well. It was fun, i always enjoy translating. then afterwards, President and I had a little chat and just talked a bit about my mission. It was good, just once again kind of sad to think that it's almost over.
Yesterday was possibly the longest day of my mission. we got up at 4 so we could catch the train at 5:30 so we could get to budapest at 8 in time for Elder Pendleton to go get registered for his residency permit. well, there was something wrong about 10 minutes away from the last stop, so our trian sat there for 45 minutes or so......but, everything worked out and we were still able to get Elder Pendleton down to the hivatal and registered and everything. as for me, I went to the nagy piac and bought a few things, then Sister Smith and Sister Bagozzi took us out for lunch at a cool little rétesház....afterwards, we went to Szent István's basillica, which was pretty amazing. I got a picture of King István's holy right hand.....kind of intense. the whole building is just massive and so ornate, it's incredible. then, we got back to the mission home in time for my meeting which lasted about 10 minutes. it was good, we talked about how everyone was doing and how to improve and stuff. then, Elder Pendleton and I, as well as Sister Johnson and Sister Galliand got on a train at 6 in the evening. that was a pretty fun train ride, we ended up singin Day-o (from Beetlejuice.... :) because i just happened to have the lyrics on me... hehehehehe) and telling about our most traumatic bone-breaking experiences at home....I say 'we' and i actually mean Sister Johnson and Elder Pendleton, becuase neither Sister Galliand nor I have every broken a bone. so yeah, that was fun. then, we got back to Eger, and the APs were there to go on splits with us. they spent the night, and then they just left at 3:30 today. it was really fun.
So, that was our week. I've got to head out soon, so i hope you all have a great time, and we'll talk to you all next week!
Elder Murray

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Transfer 16, Week 4 - Oct. 29, 2011

Hi everyone
So, slight hiccup in things....we can't email on Monday or Tuesday because those are holidays and then on Wednesday we'll be in Budapest for Zone Conference, so the next opportunity we would have to email is Thursday, so we just decided to run in here real quick and get it done now. Sorry for not letting you know sooner, we just kind of found out ourselves a few days ago.
So, not much going on this week...we had a few programs with some members, actually met with the one guy we streeted into, he was cool and we're going to see if he'll come to the activity tonite. Other than that, we've been doing a lot of tabling which is where we take a little collapsible table into the belváros and set up some Book of Mormons and pamphlets and stuff on it, then tape a sign on the front. two of us usually stay by the table and then the other two kind of go out and try to nab people and bring them in to the table. It's been going pretty well, we've gotten a few possibilities from it. Not too much excitement....well, we did have a slightly drunk man come up and stay for a while...he whipped out his little pocket bottle and asked if we wanted any, I said no, definitely not, and then he got pretty intense about me taking some. He took a few swigs, but luckily the only thing he did was spill a little on our sign. ugh, i hate that smell, i've smelled it on every single drunk person in Hungary. blegh! so yeah, that's our little thrill this week.
We're trying to get a game night going here in Eger, so tonight will be the first one...hopefully it goes well.
So, that's about it. Next week, we'll be working on Monday, then Tuesday is a super p-day, i'm still not sure what the plan is for that, i'd really like to go over to this cemetary nearby once it gets darker out (which starts happening at about 5:30 nowadays) and see all the candles. i missed it last year, and i've heard that it is really amazing. i'll be sure to take some pictures...maybe. :)
That's about it. Not too much else going on....we have zone conference on Wednesday with the southwest zone (and possibly the west...not sure on that one) so Sister Wright, Elder Miller and I will be giving our departing testimonies....gosh, that is a super weird thought, it's kind of something that i've been waiting for a lot, but now that it's here, it seems like it has come way too fast...i still have 3 weeks after that, so we'll see what happens.
ok, i think i'll sign off, i won't be emailing this next week, just on Monday the 7th...actually, it might end up being on the 8th, because on the 7th we're going to Budapest to get Elder Pendleton registered. we'll see..... :) I hope you all have a great week or two!
Elder Murray

Response to email from Mom - Oct. 24, 2011

Eger is pretty cool....definitely one of the prettiest cities i have served in...probably because it is the seat of the Catholic church in, lots of Catholics who really don't want to change their religion...but, we meet some people who are always willing to chat on the street. so........we'll see how things go. it is actually pronounced like "egg", and then say "er" pronouncing the e the same way as in egg. Egg-air. that is also pretty close.
hm...blessings i have recieved from serving a mission.....i would probably say one of the biggest is definitely having the opportunity to learn Christlike attributes and then look at myself and see what i need to change...of course, i have the opportunity at home as well, but i really feel like being on a mission kind of magnifies every aspect of that. then of course, there's learning about the gospel. Another big one (actually, probably one of the biggest) would just be an increased desire to share the gospel. It has never really seemed like a commandment to me before, just a really good idea, but everything on my mission and in general conferences has been basically yelling at me that yes it is a commandment and i need to share it with as many people as i can. it's also been really cool to see that desire grow in people at home - like with Lynell, for instance. that was super cool to hear about her missionary experiences. and, i have felt a super strong desire to share the gospel with my friends at home as well. so, i think that that would be one of my greatest blessings. and then of course, all the people i meet and grow to love. it is going to be super hard to say goodbye to this country. Hungarians always say that it may be difficult to become their friend, but once they have accepted you as their friend, nothing will ever break that friendship.

Transfer 16, Week 3 - Oct 24, 2011

Hi everyone!
ok, so, it's officially week 3 now.....week 2 was......good. Pretty much the whole week, Elder Pendleton and I were out on the street. and, we got one phone number. it was cool though, the guy from whom we got the phone number actually stopped and talked to us for 5 or 10 minutes. he was super cool, he's attending the college, maybe about 20 years old, and we just had a cool conversation about why we're here and what we talk to people about. we actually have a program set up with him for tonight, so it'll be interesting to see where things go. pretty exciting! other than that, not too much going on...we met with a less-active who is probably one of the most fancy bácsis i have ever seen.....super polite, speaks really nicely in his really deep voice, and just an all-around cool guy.
So, that was about it for working stuff....Sunday, we had a meeting about an hour before church, and we realized that the Gudgells were coming and that they would need a translator, so I got voted for that since i'm the oldest missionary. then, it was discovered that they needed a teacher for Sunday school, so i was also assigned that. then, just as sacrament meeting was starting, the member blessing the sacrament came over and asked if i would be the other person to bless. So, i basically didn't have any time to relax at church. it was a lof of fun though, it was the first time i blessed the sacrament in hungarian at a church meeting, it was my first time translating a talk in sacrament meeting, and it was my first time teaching an actual sunday school class. so, a lot of first-timers on Sunday. I really enjoy translating though (except when i've been doing it for a while really fast, then my brain just gets fried), and i definitely gained a better appreciation for Sister Smith, because she got roped into teaching a lesson last minute just after she had gotten to the country. i can't really say i enjoyed teaching the sunday school lesson (it was actually probably one of the most boring ones the memebrs have ever attended), but i think i learned a lesson - be prepared for everything, especially the unexpected. kind of a difficult lesson since i'm still kind of learning not to procrastinate.....but oh well.
so, yeah, that was our week in a nutshell. not quite sure too much how this week is going to go, but we'll get some planning done and try to do what we can.
i hope you all have a great week!
Elder Murray

Monday, October 17, 2011

Transfer 16, Week 2

Hi everyone
Wow, it feels so weird to write 16 up there, super unbelievable.
So, my greenie's name is Elder Pendleton...he's from American Fork, Utah. He's a pretty fun guy, I'm looking forward to serving with him and helping him along. I'm sure he'll be fine with everything, he's got a good base in the language to build off of and there's a new program now for trainers/new missionaries that we're going through, so I'm sure that he is going to be a stellar missionary.
We are in Eger right now, it's between Budapest and Miskolc, and we opened up a new companionship in the city. It's a bit of a daunting task, I've never whitewashed before, it's kind of difficult coming in and working from ground zero. But, I'm confident that as we work hard and seek the Lord's help and guidance, we'll be able to see miracles happen here. We're going to be focusing on meeting with members for the time being (outside of finding time) in an attempt to get to know them better and hopefully help them share the gospel with others. I'm not really sure what else to do in terms in finding, I guess we'll just try everything out and see what works.
So, not much going on this week....oh, funny story though, we actually watched General Conference on Saturday and Sunday. The smaller branches get it on dvd a week afterwards and then watch it like normal, so it was time here to watch it. It was great to see some of the talks again and to see others for the first time. It was so awesome, I can hardly wait for the Liahona to come out so I can read them again!
So, that's about it....I hope you all have a great time, let me know how things are going!
Elder Murray

Monday, October 10, 2011

Transfer 16, Week 1

Hi everyone.
Ok, i'll start with this last week...not too much news, we had a pretty average week. It's super weird to think that this was the last week of this transfer...super strange.....but yeah, not too much going on this past week. Just visiting a few inactives, meeting with the normal round-up. It was a pretty calm week. So, yeah. Ha, on Sunday, we went in to help with primary, and it kind of just turned into a question-and-answer session with the two teachers in there.....but, it was good for the kids too, the one boy sounds super excited to serve a mission, i think he really liked having us there.
So, this morning we got transfer calls. Elder Diamond is staying here and getting his kicsi Elder Bouck. Sister Török will be going back to Pest, and Sister Johnson will be training a new missionary. I am going to Eger to open up another companionship and to train a new missionary. I'm kind of super nervous about it, but i've been to Eger a few times on splits, I know a few members, the senior couple there is super rad, and I've served around Elder Hommes when he first got to Hungary (he'll be in the other companionship). So, yeah, that's the big news for the week. I'm really excited to be training, just kind of nervous. I hope I can set a good example and everything for him. Plus, it's super weird to think that I only have 6 weeks left......Elder Lundeen goes home on Thursday, that is super weird, i can't believe he's going to be home! dang.
so yeah, that's about all the news for this week. Things will be week I'll be emailing from Eger! until then, i hope you all have a great time!
Elder Murray