Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Transfer 8, Week 4

HI everyone!
Ok, I promised last Thursday, so here's the Thanksgiving run-through. We went to the mission home in Budapest at 8 a.m. so Elder Allen could practice for the Christmas concert. While he was practicing, I made the butterscotch pies. Well, the filling and meringue......Sister Steck and Sister Johnson made the crusts. Oh, funny story. So, the crusts turned out being........a little smaller than would have been desired. So, I poured in the filling for the first one, and it was totally even with the top of the crust. Then, I put on the meringue, and the filling started blurping out the sides. It overflowed a little bit more when we stuck it in the oven. We did the second one better - we saved some of the filling and meringue and just ate it while we waited for it to cook. After that little adventure, we went to an internet cafe to email, then came back and helped set up for Thanksgiving dinner. It was so much fun, there were so many missionaries there, and the food was so good, we all had a really great time. and, a few people even said they really liked the butterscotch pie. What do you know....... :) yeah, so, dinner was at about 3:00 and went to 5 or something......after that, a bunch of people went upstairs to watch some reruns of last years BYU football games. Elder Nikolov, Sister Johnson, Elder Ottley and I went to the MR3 radio station to listen to a live broadcast. It was an anniversary performance or something honoring Hungarian composers. It was pretty cool, there were about 20 people who attended. We got to sit right up at the front. A lady played the piano, and a gentleman played the cello--it was really cool. And, we all got to be on the radio! Well, not really......we just got to applaud before and after the songs, so that was on the radio. yay.......it was pretty cool though. The songs were really cool, and they both played extremely well. I'm really glad I got to go to it. Everyone else went ice skating after finishing the football game. So, that was thanksgiving. it was a long day, but super awesome.
After that, on Friday we had zone conference. That was super fun, especially since we were combined with the East zone. I got to see Elder Bird again, and Sister Crosley gave her departing testimony--I can't believe she's going home, that is soooo wierd. the mission is starting to get super young. It's wierd to see all the people in the groups above me and all the people in the groups below me. It's starting to get to where I'm older than most in the mission, and it feels super wierd. But yeah, zone conference was cool, and then we had gofri est. We talked to Csilla at that, and had a super awesome discussion. I'll just tell you all Csilla's story real quickly here......So, she just recently moved to Érd to live with her older sister so she could go to school in Budapest. During Elder Saunders' first transfer here, she always saw Elder Anderson and Elder Saunders on the street handing out english class fliers and talking to people. This was when Csilla had just moved to Érd, and from what she's told us, she was looking for a church. Somehow, she found out about english class and came. On her first day, both Elder Saunders and Elder Anderson had the distinct feeling that they needed to meet with her. So, they set up an appointment, and we met with her during my first week. All of our programs with her have been absolutely amazing, whenever we teach her something, she always agrees with it, as if it was something that she already knew, she just needed to hear it from someone. She was born a Catholic, but lived in England for a few years and attended a few different churches. She has basically gathered all of the truths that she has found in those, and now she's getting all of those confirmed by what she's learning, as well as learning new things. She is super awesome! It's really been a blessing for me to be able to take part in this with her. Every time we meet with her, it's obvious that she is moving closer and closer to baptism. One time at Gofri Est, she mentioned that whenever she comes to these kind of activities, she feels like she is at home--moreso than if she would be with her family. She asked about baptism, and what would change after she got baptised. This past Friday at Gofri Est, she pulled us aside towards the end, and said that she had gotten pretty much all of her answers, and she knows that it is true. It was a super amazing experience, Elder Allen and I were pretty ecstatic. so, that is Csilla. She really is an incredible person. Her family situation sounds absolutely horrid, but she has such amazing faith and hope in the Savior, that she is able to overcome most things that would discourage her or hold her back. We are super excited to see her story continue.
So, that's about it for this week. The Christmas concerts start this Friday, so we're all getting excited for those. Hopefully we'll be able to get everything organized for that here.
Well, I guess I'll sign off until next Monday. I hope you all have a great week, and a great start to the Christmas season!
Elder Murray

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Transfer 8, Week 3

Hi everyone!
So, things are getting super crazy around here.......(oh, and sorry if you wrote to me and i didn't respond.....we don't really have a lot of time today). There's going to be a lot of christmas concerts around the country coming up here......I'm not doing anything in it, Pres wants it to be really professional. Elder Allen will play the violin, Sister Roderick, Elder Kubricky and Elder Rummler will be singing, Elder Ottley will be playing the guitar, and sister Bodily will be playing the piano. oh, and a hungarian member will be playing the organ, or accompanying on the piano. It sounds like it's going to be really cool, I'm super excited for it.
So, other than that, not much else.....pretty crazy, because Elder Allen has to practice A LOT for the concert, and we go up to Budapest A LOT so they can all practice together. It's getting kind of hectic trying to get everything worked out and coordinated, but we're managing...hopefully it will just be absolutely great.
Ok, so, other news.......oh, a member of the 70 was here (from Scotland--way cool accent) and gave a fireside, then spoke at both sessions of Stake conference. It was super cool. We brought Csilla to the fireside, and she really liked it. Afterwards, while we were eating Gofris, she started talking about how she's been looking for the right church and everything, and how whenever she comes to activities and stuff, she feels like she's coming home, and then she started asking what would change after she gets baptized.....Basically, she is super ready for this step, and we are so excited for her. Everyone absolutely loves her, and they've totally accepted her and help her feel like she's a member of the family. It was a really awesome discussion with her, we're really excited to see where the next few programs with her take us.
So, that's about it.........I guess I'll report on today's feasting on Monday. Until then, Happy Thanksgiving!
Elder Murray

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Transfer 8, Week 2

HI everyone!
So, this week was pretty stressfull...I'll see if I can recap everything that happened.....
On Monday, Elder Saunders and I managed to get one of our investigators to Családi Est (Family Home Evening) in Budapest. It was pretty cool, I think she had a great time. On Tuesday, we had a 'farewell' program for Saunders with the branch mission leader and his family. That was pretty fun. Dinner was really tasty, and we had a good time with them.
On Wednesday, we went to transfers. That was good, as usual. Saunders found his new companion (apgood) and I found mine (Allen). Oh, and I got my new whip from Sister Crosley........:) So, transfers was good, we were in Budapest pretty much all day because Allen had a doctors appointment. After that, we got back and had angolóra, then got home. Thursday was good, we did a lot of fliering and had some great programs. On Friday, we had two programs, then took those two people to gofri est in budapest. They all had a super fun time, Elder Allen was in a meeting with Pres Baughman pretty much the whole time discussing a Christmas concert. (More about that later). We caught a later train back home and went straight to bed. On Saturday, we made food for the baptism (thanks again for the cookie recipe Sarah :), and got everything organized for that (pretty much, the most stressful day of my life.) We got to Budapest, the program went smoothly, the baptism was great, and everyone felt awesome. It was really a great time, the young lady who got baptized had an absolutely wonderful experience, and she said later that she never wants to forget it. We're so happy for her, it was really great. Sunday was also a good day, the same young lady was confirmed as a member and got the Holy Ghost. It was super amazing, she kept saying over and over again how grateful she is. It was a super great feeling, being able to take part in her conversion process, I'm so glad that I could be there to walk at least a part of it with her. Sunday night, we took her to a fireside in Budapest, which was awesome, then we got home and went straight to bed. Again. Yeah. We did a lot of that this week. We like sleeping, (not while we're supposed to be working of course, but when it's time to sleep, we sleep.) Today was pretty good, we went to Budapest (as usual), Elder Allen practiced for the Christmas concert, then we went shopping a bit. Not too much, but we had a fun time.
Ok, so, the Christmas concert. Pretty much, there's a ton of talent in Budapest right now (or in the surrounding areas in Elder Allen's case). One of the sister's in Pest is an absolutely amazing singer, I believe she has a cd out, the other sister is a concert pianist--I believe she is one of the best in the US or something.....and, both secretaries are (very) musicaly inclined, an Elder in Kispest is a very good......singer? (I actually don't really know, I just know he's involved in it somehow), and Elder Allen plays the violin. Oh, and there's a member who plays the organ like that's all he's ever done. So President wants to capitalize on that as much as possible, and is organizing a Christmas concert. Basically, these people all get together in Budapest every Monday to practice for 3 or 4 hours (I just hang out with Elder Peugnet--his companion is the other elder), and there are going to be 10 or so concerts around the country on the weekends leading up to Christmas. It sounds super awesome, I can't wait to see it. Just hearing the first practice today was super amazing, they really have a lot of talent. It's really going to be a great thing for people to be able to go to, I'm super excited.......although, I am wondering what I'm going to be doing while my companion is away.......ah, that's a problem for a later date. :)
So, that's pretty much it for this week........things were kind of hectic with transfers and everything, but they're starting to settle down, and Elder Allen and I are getting things going here in Érd. So, I guess I'll talk to you all next week!
Elder Murray

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Transfer 8(!?), Week 1

Hello everyone!
For those who are wondering, that is an exclamation of bewilderment.....I can't believe it's my eigthth transfer already......wierd....
Ok, first of all, last week.....not too much going on......I carved a pumpking right before going to bed on the 30th, so we had one to celebrate Halloween with (then, on the first, we threw it down the garbage chute....hehehehe). Monday we weren't able to email......everything was closed because hey, surprise, it's a holiday! (so, everythings closed....) November 1st, All Saint's Day. Basically, Hungarians get together with family to honor their dead.....they go to their graves and absolutely cover them with candles and flowers. Apparently it looks absolutely amazing.....wish I could have seen one.....so, we ended up going to Budapest, going on a little hike (turned out to be a mini-marathon...about 5 km or something), then eating lunch at Ariba's (I don't know how to spell that, it's spanish). It was pretty fun, because a) it's legit mexican food and really tasty and b) our whole MTC group was there, so we had a little reunion and mini-celebration for reaching our year mark. It was a pretty cool day, not too much went on, but just kind of relaxing and fun. Oh, and we went down into the parking garage at the mission home, and I kind of taught sister Steck how to whip......she really likes it, I'm pretty sure I got her hooked....hehehe. But yeah, that was Monday....then, on Tuesday, we would have been able to email, but we had interviews with president. Those were good, we had some great trainings to review what we learned from last time, and then when we got back, we had a super awesome program with a family we tracted into. They were super cool, they ask really good questions, and they actually are looking to apply the things they learn. Super cool. Then, on Wednesday, we had angolóra......eh, same old stuff.....then, on Thursday, we had splits with the zone leaders in Dunaújváros....I went there and ended up having to conduct a baptismal interview.....so, kind of a surprise, but it was really cool. We had a pretty good split, I got to know a few people there, and the interview went well. One of our investigators also had an interview with the zone leader....she passed, and will be getting baptized this Saturday! Super awesome! and, super cool story from yesterday....so, it was the first Sunday, so everyone was going up to bear their testimony. A few people got up to bear their testimonies, and then there was a little bit of a lapse....she leaned over to me and asked if she could go up......I must say, it took great restraint on my part not to stand up and scream like a little girl who just got a pony for Christmas.....I managed to convey that of course she could, and she said that she was scared. I said she didn't have to be, just say what comes from your heart, and she walked right up there and bore her testimony! She said that she knew this church is true, and she shared a story about bearing her testimony to a classmate at college about the Book of Mormon! It was a super awesome experience, and everyone congratulated her afterwards, and she told us that it seemed like there had been a little voice just telling her over and over again to go up and bear her testimony. We told her that that is the Holy Ghost and that she will be able to feel things like that all the time after she is baptized. She is so awesome, she keeps saying that she never thought anything like this was possible (she was completely atheist before meeting the missionaries), and she tells us all the time that she hopes to one day have the kind of faith of that she sees in us. From the way things are going, she is well on her way! She is so in tune to things, and she acts on every prompting she gets. It has been super awesome to see her spiritual growth, especially in these past few weeks, and we are soooo super excited for her baptism on Saturday! Super cool!
So, that was last week......not much else.......today, we got transfer calls. Elder Saunders is going to Békéscsaba, and I am staying here to get Elder Allen. He's going into his 6th transfer, so that'll be cool to have an older missionary......I've gotten to know a few people from his group: I served around Elder Hommes in Székes, and I went on splits with Elder Davis a few times. They're super awesome, and I got to spend a little time with Allen in Nyíregyháza when I went on splits there, so I think it's going to be a pretty awesome transfer. I'm super excited to be able to get to know him better and see what he has to bring to Érd. I'm super excited, it should be a pretty sweet transfer.
So, that's the big news for the past two weeks....I'll let you all know how the baptism goes next Monday, and until then, I hope you all have a super great week!
Elder Murray