Hello, Sister Neeley again.
I just had to write you about today. We had all day to go out and make our day (because we had very little plans). We talked to many people in the morning and I was so impressed by Sister Brown, I couldn't stop thinking about it. She stopped a few people in not ideal situations and potentially awkward moments, and bravely offered our message. Today I was really especially impressed. Someone who came up to talk to her. We were standing at a crowded bus stop for 2 minutes until our bus showed up. During that 2 minutes I was a spectator as this guy (about in his 20's) came up to her because he saw her Book of Mormon. He told her that that book was bade and an offender to true religion. He said this to us in Lithuanian and then in English. Oh boy did she tell him! "This book is the most correct book of any on Earth. Have you read it?" He said he had as our bus pulled up (thank goodness). "You need to pray about it!" And that was all. It was such an intense moment. Such boldness and power and authority I've never heard from Sister Brown! Wow! JEGA! I stood behind her as she got on the bus and the guy just watched us leave. Usually only mental or drunk people talk to us, but he opened up a new category. I'm not saying he was possessed, but his was an offensive spirit. Offensive to truth and light, not a follower of Christ.
On another note, Sister Brown is a great example to me. Every single time she is sitting on a full bus and someone gets on who needs a seat, every time without fail she is the first one to give up her seat. That's all for now. I'm very grateful Sister Brown is my companion. I think we are going to be friends for a very long time. :)
Oh! And our favorite rejection so far this week has been when Sister Brown tried to talk to this lady and said we are missionaries. The response as the lady walked away was a new one, "disappear from my eyes!...missionaries." (haha)
PS- You're right, missions are very much for the missionary. Reminds me of Joseph Smith when they were building the temple he said, "the Lord is not just building a temple here, He is building us." And I will be sure to contact you before stopping by in the future. :)
On Monday after emails we got to watch the full Restoration film on a computer at the church. Sister Brown and I managed to maneuver the leather couch from the foyer place down the hall so we could sit on a couch in the hall as we watched the movie. :) I love watching fils with Sister Brown because she is so sensitive and so am I. I always know when she would be crying, then I look and yep, the tears are flowing. Sometimes she finds a Mormon Message from a collection in our apartment and has to show me her favorite. Pretty soon we are both sobbing together, or one time I got her. I had a collection of stories and the best one happened to also be the saddest, so I read it to her and we both sobbed together. It's really good bonding, but anyway! It's nice to not be the only emotional person in the companionship.
This leads into our Wednesday night experience in Branch Council. We both felt our hearts reach out (yes us both, because we are so unified, so tight...like unto a dish ;)) as a new convert shared halfway through the council that he was just kicked out of his home by his wife who thinks he is crazy for being a Mormon. In all seriousness, this moved us. We serve in a country where if you are a Mormon, or anything not Catholic, you are mental. Literally crazy. It's really sad. In the words of Sister Brown, "it's just weird because I thought that didn't happen anymore these days, people being rejected by their families for joining the Church." These members are in church every Sunday because they love the Lord and have sought and received an answer from Him that this church is His only true living church on the planet. I hope that is the only reason we all go to church every Sunday. That would make the Sabbath a delight, honoring it for the right reasons.
Dear Family and Friends,
A few weeks back we had a Branch activity where we all cleaned up the church lawn, We raked and picked up leaves, and good thing because the very next day we had the very first snow of the Season on Sunday. Before, and while, we were headed to church it was really coming down, really giant snowflakes. It was really fun. So that was a blessing, we did that before the snow even though it didn't actually stick for more than a few days. We also had a Young Women activity where we learned how to make a cake and these really cute little desserts. We made this batter, then we take this rod type thing with a cool design on the end and you dip it into the batter, then you put it in hot oil and you hold it for a second, then it kind of releases and you are left with a thin, crunchy, fried type cookie and you sprinkle powdered sugar on them. They were really delicious.
On Sunday we were finally able to meet with a referral from a member, her name is Ryta, her name actually means "morning" in Lithuanian. She was really nice, but also you could tell they are siblings how they treat each other even though they are in their late 50's and 60's. You could also tell she is the older sister. It is hard to meet with her since she works a lot at a hospital. We were able to meet with her once though, and we were planning on teaching about the Plan of Salvation, but when we got there the questions she had were more about the Restoration. she took everything well and said she would begin reading the Book of Mormon and praying about it.
The day before Thanksgiving we were able to meet with a family in the Branch. It went well and she made these delicious little pastries and then they made us eat a ton, at least they were yummy. They are a really sweet family. I really enjoy visiting people in the Branch. We get to know them better and then they can feel like they know us and trust us more.
On Thanksgiving Sister Neeley made us a delicious dinner of chicken, mashed potatoes, and steam broccoli. She is always making sure I get my vegetables.
On Sunday we received permission to have a Thanksgiving dinner at the senior couples apartment with all of the Americans in Lithuania. We had all of the missionaries and some girls who are here with a program to teach English, then a little family who is here for the husbands schooling, the Salmon's. It was really fun, they even found a turkey, apparently they are really rare here because it was hard to find and then it cost them 50 euros. I still can't believe they bought it. I was really grateful though. I brought a pumpkin pie and Sister Neeley made a pumpkin roll. It was really yummy and felt like Thanksgiving being all together. I am so grateful for all of the friends I have made on my mission, it has been a wonderful experience.
I rearranged my pictures on the wall. Also, notice the stuffed wolf in sheep's clothing. Isn't that cute and completely relatable to the Gospel? I thought so.