February 23, 2015

Farewell old companions and welcome my new ones!

Things are really starting to pick up here. Last night we got a call from our mission president, who said that I was joining Elder Chingas and Elder Krajnc's companionship, which I though was weird because they had already been together for 3 months, and Elder Prince and Gierisch have already served together for about 6 months. Then he talked to Elder Prince, and it turned out that after 15 months in Macedonia, he's getting transferred to Albania, which is a totally different language. Then Elder Gierisch talked to President, and found out he's going to Kosovo. Both were very surprised to say the least. No missionary that has been called to Macedonia has ever been taken out. It will be the first real transfer we have here, instead of just always staying in Skopje. They leave tomorrow, which means in 1 1/2 weeks, Macedonia has gone from 5 companionships to 2, with Elder Barber and Sister Schofield gone as well.

It was sad to see those two go home. They were some awesome, kind missionaries, but I know they're happy to be with their families! Elder Barber took off early in the week, while Sister Schofield was heading out on Friday. Her parents were some fun people to be around while they were here! They took us out to eat many times, which were my first member dinners while I've been here! I never thought I would get any of those. On Friday, they went to the airport, only to find out that their destination was snowed in, so they got to stay a few extra days. Now they are currently stuck in Istanbul, so they have been having all sorts of problems.

We were supposed to get our half-way training at 6 weeks in the field, but since were so far away, that didn't happen. President Weidmann finally was able to come down here this past week with his assistants, wife and daughter. He gave us a pretty good training. Then the next day, I went on an exchange with Elder Lenderman, one of the assistants. That guy is a hard worker. We were definitely blessed on our day together. He only knows Albanian, and it seemed that every person we talked to that morning was an Albanian, so that was awesome! Except then I couldn't speak with anyone...there was one guy that knew Macedonian, Albanian, and English whom we talked to for about 10 minutes, constantly switching from all 3 languages, which was pretty funny.

We were going home one night, when we ran into Phillip and his girlfriend, Ana. We found out that she's really interested, and that she's read quite a bit of the Book of Mormon, but neither of them can understand it very well since it's in Serbian. That gave us a new hope for Phillip. That night with Elder Lenderman, we tried to meet up with them, but only Phillip showed. Usually he just talks through the whole lesson about all this random stuff, but we actually managed to keep it pretty focused the whole time. Then we ended, went outside, and found Ana! We talked to her for a good bit and had a prayer with her, which ended up really awesome! 

We might be getting a building soon. The Nelsons are looking around for a big house we can use. Right now the only good one it far away, which would make it hard for some members investigators to get to. But it's better than the hotel!

Elder Rigby