January 31, 2011


Week six has begun already. Transfers are so weird they begin and end and you don't know what happened in the middle. Elder Anderson and I are pretty sure we'll both be staying, guess we'll find out though. Yes I got the card from Grandma and am very grateful for it! I was planning on writing her back as soon as I can. So hopefully that will be soon ha.

The week was pretty good. Sunday was cool, we taught the young men’s class and talked mostly about preparing for a mission and what it’s like on a mission. It was cool to be able to talk to them about that. I kind of pictured me in their place at their age. Then we tried to plan our lesson according to that. Like how interested we would be when we were 15 or 16 and had missionaries telling us about a mission. Although back home we never really had missionaries in our ward so it was always special when they were there. Here though they've had missionaries their whole lives so it’s nothing special. But it went pretty well and the normal teachers made the lesson really cool.
After church I went around trying to meet members as normal and met the stake patriarch who is in our ward. He is a really awesome guy! It was funny though he looked at my name and couldn't pronounce it like normal so I told him you roll the R's but since lots of people have trouble with that you can kind of replace the R's with D's. He could roll his R's though. Then I explained how it’s a Maori name. He got way excited and asked if I was maori and then went off telling me how much he loves the Maori people. He told me lots of stories about Matthew Cowley and the faith of the Maori people. Then he said ''You be proud you are Maori and that you come from a people of amazing faith''. So that was pretty cool. We have such an awesome heritage!!
This week I was on a tausch with Elder Carlson from American Fork. He said he knows Sarah, that she was a grade older than him I think. It was cool though he's a good Elder. We went to go by on some potential investigators and they weren't there then when we came around the corner we talked to this guy and it was like miracle! He comes from Nigeria. We asked him what Jesus Christ meant to him and he gave us all these awesome really good answers. Then we asked him if he had the book of Mormon and he said ''Oh the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints?!' And we said yes! He said no I don't have a Book of Mormon; do you have one for me?? (Conversation was in English) I said yes actually I do have an English one with me. (The people we were going by on were from Ghana but weren't there so I had their Book of Mormon). As I pulled it out he asked if there was a church he could go to on Sundays. So we told him about it and how he could come. Then as I wrote the address down he said ''yea I am a baptized member of your church. I came to Germany and I could not find the congregation of God so I did not go to church.” I stopped writing and had to rethink what he just said because I wasn't sure if I had heard right ha. Turns out he went from Nigeria to Italy, met missionaries in Italy, got baptized and then a while later moved to Germany. So he was literally lost! It was cool to be blessed to find him and help him find the 'congregation of God' as he called it. Luckily there is a International ward in Frankfurt as well where it’s all in English so that’s where he'll be going. That was a cool miracle though!
We have also been working with a kid named Liang from China. He loves meeting with us and coming to the YSA activities. He is still learning German and getting settled here so life's still hectic and stressful. We taught him about prayer and asked him to read Enos. He said he went home and did it then went to bed, then woke up and prayed and ate breakfast. As he was eating and reading a Chinese paper he read something about how so many people now days are stressed and going through hectic times and how they can handle those times. He told us he thinks that’s how God answered his prayer and calmed his worries. Then his computer was broken and he needed it for something. He called and asked a lot of people trying to figure out what to do but couldn't do it. He didn't know how to explain in German what was wrong so he didn't want to take it to a shop. He called us though and asked if we could help him. Then a few hours later he called and said I fixed it! And was way excited. He said he was really worried about it and decided he could try praying. So he was home alone, knelt down and prayed and asked for help. Then he said when he went back to his computer and tried to fix it it all worked out. So he wanted to call us and tell us how prayer worked! It was really cool he had 2 really good experiences with prayer this week. So we're going to continue working with him.
It’s been cool to see how the Lord's work goes on. It’s not his work just to get people to obey him and to conform and join his church. It is his work to help people reach their divine potential. HE LOVES US. He wants us to feel and experience his love. He gives us experiences and small tastes of these things and then we have the opportunity to grab on and take it in. So it’s been a blessing to be able to see how others experience these things. Even when they are very small. These small little things can have big effects if we allow them to.
God recognizes and knows that for us to learn, grow, and become what is best for us we have to struggle. We have to have hard times, to go through hard things. Our perspective is what makes the difference. We can notice the terrible things going on in the world, the hard times we have to go through, the hard times others have to go through. Then we have a choice. We can blame God, and continue to distance ourselves from him. Which will result in more and more doubt, becoming more and more bitter, and never really gaining the understanding we need. Or we can focus and try to find good and hope still there. We can try to notice and feel his love. God does still do things to manifest his love in our lives. It’s up to us to notice them. Then recognize when we notice them, and try to multiply those moments.
I'm grateful for what I've been able to learn in the last while about why we must be patient, why we must struggle, why things are the way they are. Like Elder Busche says 'On the road to salvation let questions arise, but never doubts'. I've had a lot of questions and I've met people who have had a lot of questions, when we don't doubt and try to find an answer, we find an answer! When we have to wait longer for answers or struggle more, it is an opportunity to grow in patience and faith.
I hope everyone back home is doing good. I hope everyone is trying to find the love of God in their lives. I wish I could better express how I feel about the gospel but I don't know how. I love you all very much and pray for you all every day. Find good, be happy, and have a good week.
Elder Puriri

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