Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Week 15


How is everybody doing this fine day?! I am doing wonderfully. This week was good and busy and very eventful. I wish I could attach a video that we made cause it would explain the kinds of things that happen here. Basically, this place is crazy and some days are even more crazy. The week started off pretty normally, but then on Wednesday morning we got put into a threesome with Sister Ferguson (AKA Sister Fergie cause no Armenians can say Ferguson). She was finishing up her mission and had been serving with Sister Corny (Cornwell, but thats close to a BAD swear in Armenian haha) who was also finishing and whose parents had already come and met up with her. So SIster Fergie was waiting for her family to come a few days later and so we got her. She is hilarious and super fun to be with so it was a fun few days. We got a lot of good work done. And then on Saturday we had the busiest and craziest day ever. Sis Fergie's parents were supposed to come Friday night but their flight got cancelled so they were stuck in Paris and no one had any way of getting into contact with them. So Sister Fergie just had to stick with us until we found out what was going on. So Saturday we had to go to a blood lab to get Sister Deaver's blood drawn for some tests. On our way there at about noon Sis Fergie's parents called finally and said they were here. They had flown in at 4 that morning and had no idea where they were staying (they had rented an apartment for the time they will be here and the tourist company they went through get them there that morning). They promptly went to sleep and didn't bother calling until they woke up haha. So we had to go on a wild goose chase trying to find them. It was not easy. The street we were trying to find was called Tumanyan, but the way Sis Fergie's mom heard it was 2 manya, so then we were translating and saying yerkoo manya... it caused some problems until a genius taxi driver figured it out. Then we went to the wrong building, then to the wrong entrance, then to the wrong floor ( a couple of times) and then FINALLY we found her family with 5 minutes to get to our baptismal interview! It was crazy. But we made it. We literally ran to get a taxi. Good times.

The baptismal interview then didn't go so well. She didn't pass it, but she is totally ready. The Elders didn't feel about passing her because she hadn't read the Book of Mormon at all that week because she was so busy and in another village taking care of a friend who was sick. They said themselves that she is ready, but there has been SUCH a huge emphasis on reading the Book of Mormon daily lately that they just didn't feel good about passing her at that point. But she has another interview set up for this week and we are all pretty sure that she will pass, so we should have a baptism in a couple of weeks! My first one!!! I am so excited. I love this woman so much, she is so amazing. (It's Mariam if you are confused, but you can't put her name on the blog). We were kind of worried about her after the interview because she seemed really upset and didn't stay for the branch party after which she had said she would come to, but she came to church yesterday and we got to talk to her again and its going to all be ok.

SO, there was a branch activity on Saturday to celebrate the merging of the branches that occurred yesterday. It was so cool to be there for it. President Carter explained very well, but very simply the importance of the action that was being taken. Merging the branches is the first step to creating a ward in Armenia. Creating wards is the first step to creating a stake here. And a stake is necessary to be able to build a temple here! It is SO cool to be involved in laying the foundations for the church here. It is definitely still in the beginning phases, but there are steps being made. The branch members are still pretty unsure about it all, but I am so excited for the branch. So my branch is now called the Yerevan branch. It covers a HUGE area, the whole southern half of Yerevan and there are so many more people there now. Mind you more showed up this week because of the merge, but there were close to 100 people there.... that is quite the change from our usual 35-45 people. So it is exciting. I think it will help in the work a lot too. And our branch presidency is AWESOME. Also there are now 6 of us missionaries in the branch AND a senior couple. I think having elders in my branch will be a challenge, but it will be good too. President Carter talked us up a lot to the branch, so we're hoping to really get the members involved in missionary work. The missionaries had to teach combined priesthood/relief society... so I had to speak in front of a very large group of people. I didn't really do too much for it, but I showed a demonstration thing about reading the Book of Mormon every day and bore my testimony. I thought I was going to be more nervous than I was, so it was good.

Oh, so for April Fool's day I HAD to do something. So Sister Fergie and I got Sister Deaver. We woke her up and told her it was 10 and that she needed to hurry up and great ready because we had to leave in  30 minutes. I told her it was cloudy and thats why it was still a little dark out. She was like "oh crap!" So she hurried to the shower. When she came out she was like " Dang, I feel so good. Sleeping in until 10 is the best!" Baha. We were dying laughing so hard. I passed her the phone to call someone back and she was like "wait, why is the time wrong on here" haha. So good!

We haven't gotten to watch General conference yet, but we will get to next weekend. I am super excited for it. It sounds like it was pretty dang good. I read the Ensign and stuff way more than I ever used to, so I am excited to hear it from the mouths of the prophets. It is so important to watch/read general conference. Those who speak are saying what the Lord would say to us if He were in our midst. So basically.... listen up. It's important.

I love you all like crazy and I think about you here and there when I have spare moments. I am so blessed to have so many wonderful people in my life who support and love me. I feel your prayers and love.

Love, Sister Smith

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