Monday, June 8, 2015

Fighting fire with fire

Well hey there everyone!
This week has been pretty great! We did a lot of stuff outside which was really nice because the weather has been pretty good.
So as you know on Monday we got stuck in Prague. Good news, we made it back to Liberec, after the Holts fed us a really good dinner. :)
On Tuesday we had a service project for another church. We (Ses. Hamblin, me, and the elders) went to this small town with Zdeněk (our member friend that took us to the 3 corners) and helped clean up a kostel (church building, cathedral I guess is a better word) that had burned down like 30 years ago or something. We worked up in the bell tower cleaning out all the dust and dirt and rocks that had fallen off of the walls, and carrying downstairs and outside. It was hard work and it got really dusty and pretty hot up there, but it was really cool to be up there because it's definitely not a place where just anyone can go.
While we were working, we noticed a bunch of stairs/ladders going up even further, so naturally we had to check it out. We went up one stair case, then another, and then there were 3 more rickety ladders. We went all the way to the top by the light of our phones (there wasn't any electricity up there) and poked our heads out the very top of the tower! It was so cool, we were up so high! Then we came back down and kept working, but it was a really cool adventure. The people we were helping also gave us some kolač (kind of like an apple cake/fritter) and told us that we were going to be in the newspaper! We also got to wear the yellow helping hands vests while we were working, which is cool because I found out my mom also did a service project this week and wore the same vests, so we were wearing them almost at the same time!
Also on Tuesday we tried tabling for the first time. We just set up a table in front of the church entrance, and put all the stuff we do on it. Posters for family history, free english, Books of Mormon in different languages, all sorts of pictures and other stuff. Then we would contact out in the street in front of the table and try to get people to sign up for things. It was our first time but I think it worked pretty well, we met some pretty cool people and I think the elders even got a few new investigators.
After tabling on Tuesday, Sestra Hamblin and I went and taught a FHE lesson to the Jedličkoví, and to our surprise, the Brandoví boys were there too. We read the story of Nephi building a boat together, and then we made sail boats out of newspaper, and saw whose boat stayed floating the longest. It was a simple lesson, but I think it was really good for the boys.
On Wednesday we went to lunch with the elders and one of their investigators and I got "smažený sýr", which is literally "fried cheese". Basically, they deep fry a block of cheese, and then serve it with french fries and tartar sauce. It was soooo good, but definitely not healthy!
Later on Wednesday we talked to an old, Slovak, Catholic man for over an hour on the street. First of all, I was surprised at how much I could understand, since he was speaking Slovak and we were speaking Czech, and second of all, it was really interesting talking to him. He was rock solid on catholisism. He was not interesting in changing religions, but he was really interested in what we believe. It was cool to talk to him, but it was a little frustrating because I could tell it wasn't really going anywhere.
On Thursday we did a singing display, and let me just tell you, miracles happen at singing displays. At least for me anyway. I definitely do not know enough of the language to talk to and teach someone by myself, but whenever I solo contact at singing displays, there is either some serious gift of tongues going on, or I find someone that speaks English. Thursday I found a lady who speaks English and she was just so excited about pretty much everything I was saying. I showed her a Book of Mormon and she asked me "How much is it? How can I get one" obviously I just handed her one right then and there. I also gave her a Restoration pamphlet and a Family Proclamation. She was really excited to meet, but she's going out of town for the next few weeks, but really wants to meet when she comes back.
Also on Thursday we played soccer for FHE with an investigator the elders are teaching, Romana. We gave a spiritual thought about the Atonement, and her son, who is 8, didn't really understand because he doesn't even know who God is. But we tried to explain and I think he felt the spirit during our prayer.
Saturday it was really hot here in Liberec. We also went and did service for the aunt of one of the less actives in the branch (we've done service there before). We were working outside raking leaves and pulling out trees and stuff, and the guy we're working for, decides to start burning all of the wood and weeds and things right in the middle of where we are working. So we're raking weeds and working really hard on this hot summer's day, right next to a bon fire. Sestra Hamblin and I would just look at each other through the sweat running down our faces and just say, "it builds character." That was probably the theme of the day. It was hard work but it was good and we helped them a lot.
Later on Saturday we had branch sports night. We went to a place were you can play ping pong for free outside, and well, played ping pong. It was really fun, the Jedličkoví were there, and also the elders' investigator Tao. Tao's from China and he was really good at ping pong, but so was Elder Brittner, so it was really fun to watch them play together. I'm a lot better at ping pong than I thought I was. Still not very good, but better than I thought.
I also got to practice my sports medicine skills because during sports night Elder Croney tripped and twisted his ankle really bad. It was swollen so bad, it was HUGE! But I got him all wrapped up, told him to take some anti-inflammatories and told him I'd check it before church in the morning. It looks much better now.
Well that's pretty much what happened this week. We're working hard, even when it's hot and humid outside. Thank you everyone for your love and your prayers. They are much needed and greatly appreciated!
This gospel is true, Christ is our Savior and knows exactly how we feel, in good times and bad. I love this gospel and I am so grateful for the opportunity I have to share it everyday!
Have a great week everyone!!
S laskou,
Sestra Schaerrer
P.S. I'll try to send pictures this week, but it's not looking like we're going to have time today.

Here are pictures, one of our lessons was changed so we had time to send them! :)

Pics of the church we helped clean up, that bell is 400 years old! Also it was pitch black up in the tower, the only light is from the flash on my camera!

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