Sunday, June 21, 2009
“The Final Countdown”
All is well here in Chelyabinsk, the city where tanks run free. We are actually going to take pictures with some tanks and missiles today, I would like to snag a picture riding one of the silos but I don’t have a cowboy hat so it would be inappropriate.
We’re in week three in the transfer our zone has named “The Final Countdown” I’ve liked to name all our transfers here in Chily, it gives the transfer a kinda theme and it’s fun to spread the buzz words. And this transfer we even have a theme song that is quite popular in Russia for some reason so we get to hear it all the time and get jazzed! Of course the title alludes to the fact that Jensky and I are leaving and so is President Allen, and it’s a countdown to the arrival of the new President. The main theme is fire, as in missionary enthusiasm and zeal. So I give every one fire themed codenames that are subject to change at any moment. The Elders in Cha Ta Za were formerly Charmander and Charmeleon, but they got a baptismal date that they were way excited about so they evolved into Charazard and Magmar. I named Elder Taylor “Sparky” and he feels it has an electricity connotation to it, but I think fire so the codename stands. Then I re-named him to “electro” just for kicks. The sisters are limited because there are few female fire related things out there, so I give them some names sometimes that are actually Male X-Men characters but they don’t know the difference so it’s ok. And for any missionary who’s conduct puts out any others fire, they are dubbed “Smokey the Bear” until they have shown sufficient reconciliation from the title. We run a tight ship of flame here in Chelyabinsk, powered by napalm and coasting on waves of plasma. Quick side topic that came up the other day, Brigham Young said the spirit world is right here on ours, but we can’t see it, and they even have spirit buildings and spirit trees etc. Does that mean they have spirit lava? Can it burn your spirit if it touches you? How can we be sure we are not in the cavity of a spirit volcano right now?
Church was great yesterday, several investigators at the meeting. Sadly our two people with baptismal dates missed a train that would have brought them so they didn’t make it, so we might have to re-do the date, and she still hasn’t told her husband yet so we going to still be working with them hopefully a lot this week. Shamil our new investigator came, he liked it and even asked good questions during Sunday school, which shows he felt welcome. We even tried to set a baptismal date with him last week, and he says he definitely wants to get baptized but putting a date on it could set it up for failure, and he just wants to decide when he feels it’s certain and then he will be baptized. He’s being kind of a Hippy about it, wanting it but not wanting any specifics attached to it that would ruin it. So were working on bringing him down to earth in our down to earth specific religion. Also a cool kid who was a foreign exchange student in Idaho who’s family sent us his info, and he was excited to come to church in Russia last week, came back and enjoyed it again. He’s a Philosophy major so he’s got a lot of tough debatable questions but I was surprised as the Gospel had answers for all of them so far. He says he comes just because he likes the atmosphere not because of the faith, but the questions he asks seem to show that he wants it to be true but just can’t accept it yet. He went to church every week in Idaho for a school year so he knows the score and hasn’t agreed to meet with us yet, but says he’ll keep coming to church, and in answering his questions this week, he showed less resistance to meeting when I asked this time saying his end of school test will prevent him, instead of just saying “no”. His name is Peter.
Jensen and I are enjoying every minute of our last days together, and way grateful for the work that’s going on here.