Wednesday, July 27, 2016

Happy Pioneer Day!

Happy Pioneer Day everyone! Hope you had a great time celebrating the amazing people that helped get our church off the ground!

This past week was pretty normal overall. We had a few raining days, a few really, really hot days. And a few days in between. 

On Tuesday, Ses. McPheeters and I went tracting in a new area just outside of Kosice where there are some really nice houses. First of all disclaimer: tracting isn't the most effect form of missionary work in the mission. But I give it a chance every now and again because with God and faith, anything is possible. Anyway, we were tracting and we ran the zvonek (like a doorbell, but from outside the fence) to a really nice looking house. A woman answered the window on the second floor, and said she didn't really want to talk, but that her husband is a pastor at the apostolic church and if we want she'll send him down to talk to us. So we said sure and he came down, and we had the most pleasant conversation I have ever had with a leader of another church. He didn't bash with us, he didn't tell us we didn't know what we're doing because we're just young girls. None of the normal stuff. He was very nice AND! AND he let us give him a Book of Mormon and our card! Never in my mission would I have ever thought that a pastor of the apostolic church would #1: talk to us without arguing, #2: Take our card, or #3: Take a Book of Mormon. I was a little bit in shock. Miracles really do happen. We just need him to get baptised and then convert his whole congregation and we'll start the Kosice Stake! :)

Then on Thursday we saw another miracle. We had been finishing our studies in our apartment, when we had to hurry to the church building for a lesson, and we get to the building and realize that we left our phone in our apartment. So our lesson doesn't come on time, and since we can't call them we decided to wait extra long, in case they are running late or something. While we're waiting (almost 25 minutes after our lesson was supposed to come, just to be sure) a woman (not our lesson) walks into the building and tells us, "I met with missionaries about a year ago, and I thought today would be a good day to come back." MIRACLE! If we hadn't have forgotten our phone and waited extra long, no one would have been in the building and we wouldn't have met this woman. AND while we were talking to her, our original lesson walked in, and since they were both women, I was able to teach this lady while Ses. McPheeters taught our planned lesson in the other room. God definitely has a divine plan!

Then on Saturday we were able to help a really cool guy and his girlfriend clean up the yard around their house. They had a lot of wood palets that they were cutting down, and they also have sheep. So Ses. McPheeters and I helped the girlfriend clean out the sheep pen, and the elders help move around wood palets. They also had a green house that we helped with after we finished with the sheep, and in the greenhouse we found the BIGGEST WASP I HAVE EVER SEEN!! I think it's even too big to be called a wasp! I'll send a picture. Other than that it was really fun to work on a little farm and they were so happy we could help them. They also gave us a life time supply of tomatoes (the tomato plants grew taller than me!!). 

Then, as part of our Sunday, we went on a wild goose chase. A man had called us during church, but we didn't have his number in our phone already. So we called him afterwards and he told us he wanted to meet and talk to us. So we set up to meet with him on the namesti (town square). We get to the namestie and can't find him anywhere. We're calling him, and searching for him, and in the end we figured out that we are in Kosice and he's in a city called Banska Bystrica. We have no idea how he got our number. We were about to offer to send him the number for the missionaries in Baska, but then we found out he was homeless and only wanted money, and he had already asked the missionaries in Banska for money. Anyway, we literally ran all over the namestie for like 30 minutes and it was so hot!!

So pretty much that's what's happened this last week. This week we'll only be in our area for a few days because we have an exchange and a training in Bratislava, so we'll be gone Thursday, Friday, and get back late Saturday night. So we have to work really hard these few days to make up for being gone. 

The gospel is true, and I know that the Lord is watching over his little branch in Kosice (on Sunday in church it was 6 missionaries, 2 visitors, and 1 member). There is a lot of potential for growth here, we just have to be creative and find out how to do it. 

Have a wonderful week everyone! Be safe if you are traveling, and don't get sunburned!

s laskou,

Sestra Schaerrer
 Us tracting (Ses. McPheeters' first time!), the wasp! that's my ring next to it!, and us at service :)

More service pictures :) The sheep pen is all clean (the white stuff is like a sanitizer)


Monday, July 18, 2016

It's July And It's Been Freezing!!

Hello Everyone,
Well, I have no idea what the weather has been like wherever you are, but here in Slovakia for the past 3 days it's been rainy and cold! Which is really weird because I was reading in my journal about this time of year last year, and it was so hot I thought my shoes would melt to the side walk!
Anyway, this past week was pretty great. We've met with a few new investigators who have families, which would be really awesome for the branch here in Kosice. There aren't really any families, so it would be awesome if they get baptized!
We also had kind of a worrisome situation where I was almost deported. Haha not really. But because we got a new mission president, he didn't know how long I had already been in Slovakia. And I don't have a Slovak visa, only Czech. So for a while we thought I was going to be emergency transfered back to the Czech Republic or something. But a few days ago President Pohorelicky talked to the lawyer here in Slovakia and she said that when people, mainly police, ask me how long I've been here, I have to say how long it's been since I was last in the Czech Republic, which was like June 20th or something, and I'm not allowed to say how long I've actually been here, which is since February. So it's an interesting situation, but hopefully everything will be fine and I'll be able to serve here in peace.
On Friday we had a day of service. We first went to Ses. Burdigova's house and helped her clean. She's an older woman who can't really take care of her apartment by herself. Which is dumb because her son lives with her and mooches off of her and doesn't clean a thing. So we helped clean her carpets. Which involved dipping a brush into a water and vinegar mix and then brushing the dog hair out of the carpet with said wet brush. It's a method I've never seen before, but I guess it works...
Then we went and helped Eva again with this little circle garden thing she's doing. We've removed the old tree, put in a new one, and we planted probably 60 lavendar plants. It looks really good, and it makes the whole neighborhood look better.
Other than that things have been normal here. Oh, I also have decided to only speak Slovak. I was going back and forth on whether I should speak Czech or Slovak because I was originally called to speak Czech and to serve in the Czech Republic. So I was going to stick with Czech. But I've been serving in Slovakia almost 5 months now, and I'm going to finish my mission here in Slovakia, so I've decided that my call was "changed according to the needs of the mission president" and that because I'm teaching Slovak people in Slovakia, I should speak Slovak. It's actually going really well because I already understood everything, I just had to actually speak it. Before I was probably already speaking about 50% Czech and 50% Slovak, and since I decided to speak Slovak I probably speak about 80% Slovak and 20% Czech, because somethings still come out more naturally in Czech. But I've also started reading the Book of Mormon in Slovak, and I'm hoping I can finish it before the end of my mission. I have to read about 10 pages a day, and so far it's going well. I think it's actually easier for me to read the Book of Mormon in Slovak anyway (I was doing it in Czech before).
The gift of tongues is definitely real. Before I decided whether to speak Czech or Slovak, I would have a hard time speaking in Slovak whenever I tried. Then I received a blessing that talked about being confident in my decisions, and so I decided to speak and study Slovak, and ever since I made the decision, it's been much easier. God blesses us, and He answers our prayers, but I've found a lot of the time He lets us make the decisions because He trusts us.
Have a wonderful week everyone, I'll be sure to add some pictures. :)
s laskou,
Sestra Schaerrer

 Pictures :) Us with our sweaters and umbrellas in the middle of July, the sunset the other day, and our completed service project (almost, it needs more wood chips).

Monday, July 11, 2016

Week One in Košice :)

Hello Everyone,
So basically, this last week went by really fast. Ses. McPheeters and I are doing really well together, it's just like old times except this time we actually know what we're doing!!
Since this week went by so fast, I don't really remember what happened. So I'm just going to send pictures and you can put it together for yourself. ;) We mostly just contacted, visited members, and got to know Kosice better and better.
Have a great week everyone! The Lord is definitely in this work and I know He's also in each of our personal lives! You just have to look for Him! :)
s laskou,
Sestra Schaerrer

 ​​Eva, the service lady, she also took us on a hike today! I'm realizing I don't even have very many pictures of this week. Oh well, next week I'll do better!! :)​​​​​​

Tuesday, July 5, 2016

So I've been transferred to...

Hi Everyone!

Hope you've had a good, hot week, and a wonderful 4th of July celebration! (We went out for burgers.)

So this past week was the last week of the transfer, I feel like a lot of things happened, but I can't really remember very many of them because I just got transfered to Košice!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
If you don't know where Kosice (Koe-shee-tsa) is, then I'll tell you. It's the farthest east city in the mission, which means it's in Slovakia. AND I don't know if you remember but it was an extremely rare situation for me, a Czech sister missionary, to ever serve in Slovakia at all. THEN it was an extremely rare situation for me to stay in Slovakia for a second transfer. THEN it's even rarer, so rare that I should buy a lottery ticket, that I, a Czech sister missionary, would serve a THIRD transfer in Slovakia, and that all the way over in Kosice!! Can you taste the rarity?? OH! I forgot, another rare thing. Czech sister missionaries rarely repeat companions, but who am I serving with in Kosice? Sestra McPheeters. My "daughter" as we say in mission life, because I trained her two transfers ago in Bratislava. Now she's "killing" me in Kosice because this is my last transfer. It's pretty weird, but we're excited to serve together again, and Kosice is gorgeous, I'll make sure to attach some pictures. :) 

So basically last week was spent visiting as many people as we possibly could, because Ses. Van Langeveld and I knew that one of us would be leaving. On Friday we had our Meet-the-new-mission-president meeting in Bratislava and it was super cool! President and Sestra Pohorelicky came and the whole training/meeting was in Czech/Slovak. It was really great and all the missionaries were pleasantly surprised that they could understand everything. The new president is going to bring in a lot of good changes, I'm really really excited. :) 

On Sunday in Relief Society, they asked me to bare my testimony, since I didn't get a chance to do it in sacrament meeting. I told them how over the weekend my testimony of God's plan had been strengthened. And that it was strengthened in how God knows what we need, even when we think that we need or want somethings else. 
I was convinced that if I left Bratislava for my last transfer, that I would return to the Czech Republic to finish my mission where I started it. In the language that I started it in. BUT God knows better than we do, and he sent me in the complete opposite direction, to learn a different dialect of Slovak, and not Czech, to a branch which is the smallest that I've served in since I left Liberec at the end of my first transfer, and obviously to learn some lessons that I haven't learned yet. I don't really know what's waiting for me here in Kosice, but I know that I'm here for a reason, and I'll figure it out. :)

This church is true everyone! Have a wonderful week, and enjoy some pictures of my last week in Bratislava/first week in Kosice!

s laskou,

Sestra Schaerrer
 Last pictures in Bratislava, and first pictures in Košice! :)