Saturday, December 20, 2014

Mikuláš Memories (Hehehe was this the cheesiest title or what)

First off--I'm sorry because last week, I think that I wrote Michalovce instead of Mikuláš, because I was talking about Michalovce when I was writing my email. Michalovce is a city. Mikuláš is a holiday. So sorry...

Second off, this week was jam packed of wonderful things. On Monday, we went to the most INCREDIBLE MUSEUM and I am not even really sure where it is but it is in a little city outside of Košice, and has all these human bones in an old church and really insane cool stuff. The weirdest thing is that it is only 1 euro to get in and they do not even have security, and there are just literally human bones in paper bags that they dug up, and all out in the open, and it is all very confusing but the government will not give them funding so basically that is how it is and it is all really weird. And you have to set up a little private tour for yourselves because it is not always open. And there is like not much light and no air conditioning or heating systems. BUT IT WAS SO COOL.

Second of all, (Hahahah I just realized I already said second off, but oh well) it was birthday for
Andrej on monday, which was a lot of fun because we had FHE and were making clay nativities and all that jazz. The big 20! he is literally so funny. 

Also, I totally wrote this whole list of what I wanted to write about this week, and I forgot it. Again. So I am really sorry. I guess there is something on the list that I was not supposed to write about or something. 

On thursday, we got to do our districts once-a-training cultural event, and we went to a ballet! Hahaha it was so fun. It was a Slovak story called Janošik, which is basically a more tragic version of Robin Hood where everyone dies in the end. But it was funny and a great time. A miracle that happened after that is that we were on the bus, and we saw a dad and his daughter who we had talked to on the bus one time before! He said he is trying to make time to meet with us. Tešime sa na to. BUT ACTUALLY BECAUSE HE IS SO SUPER COOL.

I also met the coolest mom this week named Silvia. We had talked to her one time on the bus before, and commented on her red coat, and then again I saw her on the bus, and waved, and then this week we got on the bus and there she was again, just sitting there! So obviously that was a znamenie and I had to sit with her and I sat down and said, in Slovak, You still have a pretty red coat! And then found out she is a mom of three boys, and got her number. I am literally (yes, literally.) so grateful for the Holy Ghost. The gift of tongues is so real. I sometimes look at how much I have progressed in the last four months and just been really confused because I do not understand how I am speaking a different language, or how I understand all these people around me. But it is what I do! I talk to people in a different language all day! And about the gospel! It is incredible, and I definitely have not and do not do any of it on my own. And of course, I am not even near perfect, but when I cannot do it, the Lord makes up the difference.

On friday we did the last session of our sewing blankets activity, and it was such a success. Five people who we texted came! I could not believe it. Even a mom with twins from english came and sat with us the entire time. She reminded me so much of just a regular mom, with her 16 year old twins calling because they were fighting over the was so wonderful. I love families so much and as we pray to find them, we do! So excited for Christmas and hope we will be able to teach the families that we find. 

Most importantly (okay, maybe not) Mikuláš was this week!!!!!!!! Best thing ever!!!!!!!!!!!!! I loved it too much. Why we do not have it in America I do not know. The tradition is that Mikuláš (St. Nick) comes on the morning of Dec. 6th because it is his name day (Everyone in Slovakia has a name day pretty much) and puts good yummy treats and things in childrens boots if they have been good, and coal and whips if they have been bad. And on Christmas, Santa does not come, Baby Jesus does. SO. 
It was just so fun because now Košice is all lit up and the shops are all open (went and got a potato pancake thing. WILL RETURN SHORTLY) and the lights are all over and there is a giant tree and all that jazz. And I love it. And music everywhere, most of which is in English, but some in Slovak and Italian and Spanish, and I just loved it. 

he who wants to live long, has only to drink water :)
Of course Mikuláš did not come to us because we are Američanki, and we also forgot to put our polished boots on the windowsill, but Prezident Van Dalen did a good job at giving us lots of Slovak and Dutch treats. And Sestra VanDalenova made us homemade sausages this week, which I am not really sure what was in them, but they were way too yummy with potatoes and sauerkraut. 

THEN on Saturday we had a very busy schedule, sometimes we have to juggle around our studies in order to try and get all of our teaching appointments in, but we had a few miracles when we had only been out contacting for a few minutes.We gave away a Kniha Mormonova, and ran into this mom who we talked to a few weeks ago who was just crying and did not give us her number--but THIS TIME SHE DID BECAUSE SAMOZREME!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! ZNAMENIE! And then, the weirdest thing, on Sunday morning we ran into that dad on the train again. Just while we are on the topic of miracles. 

And also, we went christmas caroling as a district and it was too fun. Four kids out caroling. There was a guy sitting up on the fourth floor in his windowsill smoking with the window open, and we yelled up to him and were like, hey! Can we sing to you? and he was just like, yeah, sure, go ahead! So we sang up to him, and he asked all these questions and got his number and will go back and meet with him now! SO BOOM CHRISTMAS MIRACLES

So, basically, this week was just really good. As always. Christmas is coming and Košice has a gazillion people in it, and food and music and we gave away like 5 kniha mormonova s this week, and just everything was wonderful. This week, I think I learned a lot about the atonement as well. I am so grateful for the strength I recieve from it. I am grateful for the opportunity I have to utilize its saving power and access the blessings that my Father has for me. I hope I can constantly be tailored by the Lord in order to return to Him again, and I am more grateful than ever for the plan of salvation and the opportunity I have to grow and progress on earth, and prepare for exaltation with my family. And how trusted we are as missionaries to be sharing this with the people here in Slovakia! 

Anyway, I love you, I pray for your success and health, and know the Lord has blessings He is waiting to give to you. 

Happy holidays,

Vesele Vianoce, 

Sestra Abbott

OH! PS READ HELAMAN 5 I just love it. More than ever. I love Nefi and Lehi and their incredible examples. I was reading, and thinking about the man Aminidab, who once had known the truth in the story and helped everyone repent. And I was just thinking, he is an inactive member, a member of a family who has fallen away, who has people praying for him. He is the prodigal son that the father was praying would come back, the member of a ward that once fell away, and those peoples prayers brought about this amazing event. Prayer works! And maybe an event that earth-shattering took place because of peoples diligent prayers for an inactive member. Just a perspective but still. Love Helaman 5.

s laskou,

Sestra Abbott

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