Monday, March 26, 2012

Faith Like a Violet

Parts of the letter to me:

So Violet's doing pretty good :) She's way excited about doing missionary work and she's including her daughter and nurse with everything the church does. Plus she loves us too. Every time I come to shake her hand on Sunday, instead of shaking my hand, she slips some kind of candy bar in it :p She's so funny.

She was actually going to go to the hospital, but she said before her baptism that she had faith that through the baptism, she could get healed. We thought it was kind of pushing it, but later that week her nurse said she could just do her treatments at home. And now she says she's getting better really quickly. Plus it looks like her heart problems are about gone. :) So I guess faith has no Boundaries.

Around Christmas time, we sent Jared a bunch of yarn and these looms called Knifty Knitters.  They let you knit hats without any actual knitting.  I had them at home and showed Jared how to use them before his mission.  We thought he might like to use it to make hats for himself, companions, and the people of Armenia.  ..Speaking of yarn though, there are places everywhere here for yarn, and it seems like Sister Carter knows them all :p There's actually one right off the Metro station we use to go home :)  I already gave away the 1st one to Sister Kholer because she gave me a tie and I had to make it up to her. It was a funny story actually, she was just walking through this one store and was looking at the ties and the store owner came up to her (kind of flirtatiously) and asked if she had anyone in mind for the tie, and she said she was just looking. The guy then told her to just take the one she was looking at, so she did :p She didn't need a tie, so she just gave it to me :) 

We made a picture book for Jared through the company Shutterfly that included a lot of family pictures as well as pictures of himself in band and scouts. ...The picture book is well used :) I carry it in my backpack everywhere. Everyone always looks at it and they love it :) The most asked question is what is the funny uniform I'm wearing (both for scouts and band :p )

Letter to Carl:


This week was good. :) Challenging as usual, but good.

As far as youth in Armenia, it's a bit lacking, at least in the branches I've served in. It seems like there are mostly elderly women that attend, which is a bit discouraging. In Malatia there were none. In Charentsavan, there were actually a few, I'd say about seven or eight, but then here in Center there's only about one or two active.

With conference, we watch it a week later than it takes place so that we can watch it with the rest of the Armenians. We actually have our own disk that we watch in English, usually somewhere else in the building, while the Armenians watch a dubbed version in Armenian.

Violet is doing just great :) She's found her place in the branch and she has quite a few friends she hangs around with. When we teach her now, we actually teach her from the New Member Lessons which is lesson 5 in Preach My Gospel. So hopefully we'll be doing those soon. Plus we also teach the first 4 all over again, now that she has the spirit to guide her in her learning.

On Sunday I had to translate for all three hours because Elder Fairclough was sick and had lost his voice, and Elder Peterson did it last week. (And Elder Rackham is still in his training). I was actually kind of nervous at first, but I didn't do as bad as I thought I was going to do. I never feel like I make progress in the language, but it's nice to have those little moments that let you look back and see where you've come from.

Some Iranians also came to church and we had a meeting with them afterwards. This was kind of difficult because I'm not used to dealing with people who don't accept Christ as our Savior. They brought up the point where Christ never says He is the Son of God directly in the Bible and I thought that was a bit odd. So in personal study today I did a project on that and found quite a few scriptures, in the Bible and in modern scripture where Christ reveals his true identity as the Son of God and our Savior. Plus scriptures where God himself says Jesus Christ is His Son. So they said if I could find a scripture where Christ directly says that, they'd join our church :) So I'm going to be bringing my notes next Sunday.

They did say though that the really respected our church though because out of all the denominations, our church comes closest to Islam, which is actually somewhat true. We believe in a high standard of modesty, we both believe in not smoking or drinking, and we both believe in the Abrahamic covenant. It just makes me realize that all of us in the world really aren't as different as we think :)

Then you get people who try to tell us Christ actually didn't die in Israel but actually moved to Greece and then Japan and died of a ripe old age there after having three sons. He's seen the grave himself....


Quote of the week:
Me: "We bring news about Christ"
Guy: "Way good. What is it"
Me: "Well it's called the Book of Mormon"
Guy: "Wait, aren't Mormons dangerous"
Elder Peterson: "Do I look dangerous"
Guy: "Wait, you're Mormons??"
Us: "....."
Guy: "I thought Mormons danced around naked and did tribal dances"
Us: "....."

Our sink overflowed this week. So we took it apart to see what was wrong, and it turns out everything was wrong. Years and years of grime, food, rice, and peas were clogged up in the drains, so we spent one of our meal hours cleaning all that up, but thankfully we came out victorious, not a penny poorer, and feeling just that much manlier for fixing something ourselves :p

Love you all!

Elder Hammer

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