Monday, January 24, 2011
Hi Mom and Dad,
I didn't do my ecclesiastical endorsement because I don't think I need another one. I'm trying to finish the scholarship applications though, so I might have to be brief.
A zone leader mostly has the responsibility of being an example. We keep track of key indicators that help us know what are things we can discuss or help with. It doesn't interfere very much with the work. We have only two districts of two (Gyumri District) and four companionships (from Alaverdi and Vanadzor) with one of those being sisters. We have meetings with the other Zone Leaders and discuss the work and we attend District Meetings. It's pretty simple and I feel like our biggest responsibility is to be an example of living the gospel, being obedient and effective. I felt really good about the work this week. We are building our relationships with those we are serving and we found four new people to teach. Two are younger men, so I'm excited to work with them. As far as helping my companion, we are just trying to plan out our lessons well and I am trying to teach him principles occasionally. It's a frustrating thing to not be able to communicate with others. Elder Frye's always progressing though.
Armenians are always talking about dreams they see with Christ or some other profound experience. I think they might be a visionary people. Anyway, one of the ladies we found this week said she has always considered herself an athiest, but has had a few dreams lately that have caused her to really want to attend some church. She must have been ready to find us, because she committed herself to come with us to church and we thought it'd be good if we agreed. She came and loved it. I hope we can help her come to know her Heavenly Father and his plans for her and her family. We met some other nice people as well. One of them is this woman I'm sending a picture of and her somewhat handicapped son. I'm not sure what's the matter with him, but he just has some problems. They invited us over, though, and loved having us there. It was a nice week.
Well, I hope all is well and that the college stuff works out. Good luck with everything you are working on. I hope you are all happy and healthy.
Elder Bruce Wainwright
Tuesday, January 18, 2011
This week has been a little hard to get meetings with people, but it is getting better. My companion is new here and is still struggling with the language, so we're slowly building up our teaching pool. We're also trying to define the areas for the two elder companionships and sisters. It should get easier from here on out, though. My favorite part of this work is the relationships we get to build up with the investigators we teach and the members we help. I love the time I get to spend with these people that I care about and that the Lord loves so much.
Monday, January 10, 2011
Well, my time in Alaverdi has already passed. I am now serving in Vanadzor as a Zone Leader. It's kind of different than normal, though, because I am now finishing the training of Elder Larson's companion while being Zone Leader with Elder Crawford. Elder Larson is now with my companion. I don't know if that even makes sense to you. My companion's name is Elder Frye. He's a great guy. He's struggling a little with the language, but it will come. I only now realized how amazing Elder Kurth was really doing with Armenian. I really didn't have to do much to help him, but now I hope I can help Elder Frye. I also have gone from the newest branch in Armenia to one of the most developed. I'm sure I will be able to love the people here like I was able to in Alaverdi. I really am grateful that God has blessed me to feel love for these people. I'm excited to get into the work here, and I hope Alaverdi continues to go forward. I hope I can learn how to be a good Zone Leader. I still have questions about what a District Leader is supposed to do. Although, I do feel like it is giving me an opportunity to serve others, develop greater love, and to learn (as it says in the white handbook). I feel like I'm growing a lot, and I hope that my feelings prove to be true.
Before I left Alaverdi, we had a great meeting with a 20 year old guy named Hamo who is our investigator. We are amazed by him. He wants to start a business effort in Alaverdi, he walks to church with us, he quit smoking without us asking him to, he is reading from the Book of Mormon and I believe he will be baptized in the near future. He's a nice kid and I hope he can continue being the great man that he is.
Well, Christmas and New Years wasn't the same without you. I hope we can be together next year. I haven't done any college applications for grants, scholarships, or anything. If you, Brandon, Mark, or Crystal have any suggestions they would be greatly appreciated. I think the deadline for those is Feb 1. Time is flying. Love you all.
Elder Bruce Wainwright