Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Steffan, unfortunately decided not to become baptized this week. He seems to be lacking in his testimony of the Book of Mormon. Hopefully he can realize that this is the right thing for him to do, and he will become baptized. But for this week, no.
 And, it's almost been 6 weeks out here in the field! It has been fantastic, and it definitely feels like I've been serving the Lord for way longer than that. Elder Boehme and I joke around whenever we talk about our families "You have a mom? You're a missionary! Missionaries have moms?" It really is kind of surreal sometimes. It really cheers me up when I have the opportunity to hear from all of you! This week we met with Duncan, Isabella, and Kenny again, and they accepted the baptismal date of December 18th! How great is that!? We are also meeting with some more Romanians, the Carpacis, and they are quite a handful. Fanel, the older father, is somewhat accepting of our teachings, but wants to read and pray to find out for himself if it is from God. Marius, the younger father, is having trouble accepting the fact that God has a wife, and requested that we teach him about David and bible stories instead. We want to help them progress, so it will be interesting to see where they go from here.
Great news! Pupa, who is Sorin's wife, came to church with her family this week! She is the only adult who came, and this was a great surprise to me. She normally is in the kitchen cooking and preparing food (not our idea, but it's their culture) and then, when she's done, she'll come in and listen. But she was the "man" this week and came to church all by her lonesome! It was a real miracle. We are hoping the Anghels will get married soon, and hope they find a good job, so they can find the means to do so.
This wednesday, for Moves day, Elder Boehme and I are planning on buying Kilts in Glasgow! I hope they make them with Hunter tartans, which I'm pretty confident that they do.
Prayer also really does work as well. I have had so many experiences where I didn't know what to plan to teach an investigator, and during or after kneeling down to pray to my Heavenly Father, I have had impressions come that have turned out to be great experiences for the investigators and for myself. Also, a man named Jaime in Airdrie said to me as we were having lunch in McDonalds... "I know you from somewhere." It's really weird, I want to spell that MacDonalds.
My language has also changed a bit from being in America. I find that I speak a bit faster at times, because that's how many people speak here. It's Aye instead of yes, and a wee bit or a wee child. I thought that the weather would be a whole lot harder to deal with than Utah, but so far, it's pretty similar! :) I can't wait for when it gets colder and hopefully, snowier! As Karli said she is wishing too. :) My confidence is waxing stronger everyday, and I am always striving to become a better missionary and rely on the Spirit so much more! I learned this week that relying on the Spirit doesn't just mean listening for thoughts and impressions that come to mind as we're teaching someone. It also means putting your faith in the Lord and relaxing a bit. Relaxation will be my key focus this week - Learning how to teach calmly, collected, and with the Spirit.
I am really hoping that as we work hard, we will see more miracles this week, and I know that the Lord blesses us according to our obedience. I am so thankful for all the letters I have been receiving, and the e-mails! I appreciate them, and I hope you will keep mailing me, because it helps more than you realize. Love you all! I know the Church is true, and that true happiness and strength is found inside it. I know Joseph Smith was a Propther of God. I know Thomas S. Monson is a prophet of God on the Earth today. Stay strong in the gospel, be kind to your family, and don't eat Romanian pork fat bars, because they're disgusting.
Elder Devin Jay Hunter
P.S. Kirk out!

While I was on exchanges to Airdie on friday, I happened upon this sign inside a taxi... I could'n't let this one go undocumented. :)

Monday, October 21, 2013

Sorry about the rubbish letter last week!  This one should be much better!  What a crazy week it was!  The best news of the week is... Steffan is getting baptized!  (who is the cousin of Mihai the younger and Sorin!)  Such fantastic news, and it's a huge help to us because it sets a good example for his family in Cumbernauld!  We are going to invite them to his baptism this Saturday, and hopefully they will have renewed determination to get married and progress towards baptism!
I apologize right now - my mind is a bit muddled from yesterday because Elder Boehme and I were suddenly wrought upon by the flu Sunday morning. :(  It helped me see the difference between a day spent in the service of the Lord and a day spent immobilized at home.  So my mind is still pretty muddled.  It was a great week though!  We were sent a lot of prepared children by the Lord, and I could tell the Spirit was directing many of the conversations we had with strangers on the street.  We met one lady named Linda who said she had recently turned to God and she wanted us to come by again.  She believes that our showing up at her door could be no coincidence.  Saturday was probably one of my favorite days the entire mission so far!  We were checking out former investigators and less actives in the Kildrum area and we met a woman from (mom, you're going to love this) Portugal!  I told her I knew obrigado and sim, por favor.  It was cool!  We taught her about family home evening, and she said she holds something like that every week!  She also said she was a Christian, and she would like for us to come by this week!  She also has an adorable son named Thomas who is very open, honest, and full of energy!  He told us we were boring, and kept asking his mom when they were going to go.  She reminded me a lot of my mom at home though.  When we asked her if we could pray with her, and asked her if there was anybody in her life who could use a prayer, Thomas jumped in and asked us to pray for his goldfish.  He's not been looking too good. :I  The only barrier that we could see so far was that Kristina explained her husband might not want us over.  He drinks, and Thomas even asked us to pray for him that he would not explode because of his belly... Sometimes it's hard not to laugh.  But I can't wait to teach her and her family!  We also met a man named Duncan Drew.  He is the father of a less-active member Isobella Drew, and she is currently in the hospital.  We had a good conversation with him about the priesthood and priesthood blessings, and he was very interested and was accepting to the truths we taught.  He told us that Isobella had received a blessing before, and he thought that it had helped.  We offered to give her a blessing, and he said he would discuss it with Isobella, and then text us.  Later, we received a text from him inviting us over to give her a blessing and asked us if there was a service at our church that he could atttend!  It was also really cool, because he said he had seen me before, and was trying to figure out where from.  We taught him about the Pre-Earth life, and I suggested that he might know me from there, and it meant that I was supposed to come here and teach him the gospel.  He accepted what we taught and agreed that might be the case.  It's been a GREAT WEEK!  Well, my brain is hardly functioning right now, so I'll end my letter there!  Thanks so much for the letters and for all your support!  I promise to write back everyone next week when I am feeling well enough to do so!
Elder Devin Jay Hunter

His lunch

At the library, where they email.

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Well here goes! This week has been super crazy and fun and stressful and full of awesome things! We are teaching a man named John McCormick who found a ''Truth Restored'' card and he was very inspired by it. It uplifted him, and when he saw us walking in the street, he asked for a pamphlet, and we were barely able to get an address from him. Well, we taught him again, and he seems to be accepting of the Restoration of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. We extended a baptismal invitation for November 23rd. He accepted tentatively, saying he wants to be fully committed to it before he is baptized. He doesn't want to commit to something he doesn't believe in, which is exactly what we want! So we have faith he will come to know the gospel is true and be ready to be baptized by Novemeber 23rd! It's SO EXCITING! We are also still teaching Blair, the boyfriend of our less-active friend, Yolande, who is recently becoming interested in the gospel again. Blair honestly wants to learn more, and find out for himself if the gospel is true, so we are teaching him more and more this week. 

We are also teaching a man named Peter who is interested in learning, a woman named Lynn who is currently helping her nephew in a tough situation, and the Romanians as well! We are meeting the Romanians at 2:00 at the church this week on Tuesday with the lds employment missionaries to help them get a better job situation so... they can afford to get married! :) They are a great family, living humbly, and lots of fun. They also accept the gospel and the Book of Mormon as the Word of God. They even know that living together is a sin. So... we invited them to sleep in different rooms until they were married. But, no surprise from the Romanians,... they already are! :) They are great. 
I have grown a lot in confidence this week. I have had many opportunities to lead out in lessons and try to be less timid in talking to people, especially in lessons. On friday, Elder Boehme went to the Glasgow area with Elder Andrus (a zone leader), and Elder Walhquist, and Elder Van Den Bron, the other Zone Leader, came to Cumbernauld to teach with me. It was a humbling and quite scary experience to have to lead out for a day and set all the appointments, find the houses, and decide where we were going that day. I got lost twice! :l But we eventually found our way. After that, I felt more confident in my ability to contribute and to teach as a missionary. It was a relief to have Elder Boehme back. :)
We have so much fun here in Cumbernauld! We sing songs and make up songs together, because we both love singing, and we make jokes, mess around, and it really helps us work together in unity. We work hard every day, and it's tough to fit everything we want to do every day! But the Lord always sends us someone who needs to hear the gospel. The Church is true. It is amazing to feel the Spirit all the time, and it is very noticeable when it leaves because of a contentious or distracting environment.
ABDOMINAL CHURCH. I had to show Elder Boehme that one. :) Our diet is starting to branch out to include Pasta, meat from the Romanians, and ALL THE BEANS THEY GAVE US! Holy cow, I have never seen so many cans of beans in my life. We have about 30 at our flat now. The Romanians are great. :) The members also provide dinners and leftovers every week, which we are EXTREMELY grateful for.

We are also teaching a couple, Richmond and Winnie, who are Seventh Day Adventists, and they gave us a book to read about how the Sabbath should be on Saturday. It's pretty much their main thing, it's even a part of their title. That seems to be his biggest concern, but Winnie seems more receptive to the truths the Spirit teach her, and even stated or observed that the Book of Mormon and the Bible go hand in hand. I really hope and have faith that they will accept the truths of the restored gospel.
Well, that's all for this week. I love you all, thank you for the letters you have written me and the emails! I greatly appreciate them! I'm sorry this week's letter was short, but I only had about 20 minutes to write it! I will write in my journal and bring my thoughts with me next week so you can better understand the great miracles and work that is ongoing in Cumbernauld.
I love you all! I love the work! I love the Lord Jesus Christ and His mercy and I'm thankful for His atoning sacrifice that allows me to be a better person! Don't be afraid to get involved in the missionary work at home! It will bless and make your life happier if you do! Have a great week, 'Murica.

Elder Devin Jay Hunter
P.S. Kirk out!

Monday, October 7, 2013

Time for the weekly letter!  Where to begin?  I am making a lot of progress this week, and I am much more confident in my ability to teach!  Elder Boehme and I are working in unity a lot more than last week, and we are good friends now.  I feel like we have a good, honest relationship, and we work and talk well together.  He is a pretty funny guy!
I'll be honest, something has been bugging me this week, something vitally important to my soul.
Dinner. :)
We often wait until 9 o'clock to eat dinner and it cuts into daily planning time a bit, and then we get to bed late, around 10:40-11:00.  I think it affects my health when we do that too, but I'm not sure.  It's interesting, because the Lord sends us the most interested and prepared of His children during those times we skip dinner.  I know he recognizes the sacrifice we make, but He still wants us to obey the rules He has give us.  So I'll try harder to eat this week.... I mean.....

The Romanians are doing really well!  We are still hoping and praying for them to find the means, one way or another, to be married!  We taught them the Gospel of Jesus Christ on Sunday, and the Word of Wisdom earlier this week on Tuesday.  They are willing to stop smoking and drinking coffee, tea, and alcohol, and we have faith that they can do this as well!  Stewart and Teresa headed to Florida yesterday, and we won't see them for about two weeks!  I'm secretly hoping that Stewart is taking Teresa to Florida to propose... unlikely, but it's a good thought. :)  We will see them two mondays from now!  We are also meeting with a kindly woman named Lynn.  She had knee surgery two thursdays ago.  When we first met her, she was moving to a new flat.  We learned she was having surgery later that week, so we followed up on it afterwards by giving her a call.  Elder Boehme has taught her once, and she is really nice and receptive to us by what he tells me.  We also met this cool guy named Peter who is really interested in learning about the prophet, and we hope to meet with him soon!  It's amazing because we have so many less-active members who are re-activating!  Yolande, a Jamaican member who hasn't been for a while, has faith in Christ and I think she's starting to realize that she does have a testimony.  We just started teaching her, and this week we started teaching her boyfriend, Blaire.  He is knowledgeable about Bible stories, and is interested in learning about the gospel and going to church.  He and Yolande came to the 5:00 (Sunday morning) session we broadcasted at our church building, and they seemed to really like it.  Yolande is taking a driving test tomorrow, which I believe decides if she gets her license or not.  She was really nervous before General Conference before she came, and after watching it, she said she felt more at peace about her test.  I have confidence she can pass it.

And now I indent, because I know how long paragraphs tend to cause people, especially myself, to skim them.

Life is still good!  I am getting better at football, and had a few awesome saves as the keeper!  (We play football every saturday morning, and invite investigators and less-actives to come join in the fun and fellowship with other members and elders [and the stake president!]).  I am a bit sore today, but that is totally fine.  I love looking at the pictures I have of home.  It's a blessing to be able to see someone's face when they are miles and miles and miles away.  I have found one of the best ways to start a meaningful conversation with anyone is by talking about family history.  We found this guy who was basically a kind, caring, genuine version of Al from Al's Toy Barn.  We hope to talk to him more later!

So the reason I said that Elder Boehme taught Lynn is because this week was exchanges!  I went with Elder Parsons, who works in Airdrie, and we taught a girl named Kayleigh, who is hopefully going to be baptized on the 12th!  I can see how the gospel has influenced her life.  We also taught Stephan (stef-FAWN) and his family, who are related to the Romanians in Cumbernauld (Stephan is Milhai the older's son) and he is ready to be baptized as well!

I find a lot of my reporting to you all is about the people I am teaching, and I hope it means I am applying Matthew 16:25 like I'm supposed to!  I love you all, and I thank you for the letters and other news that I am getting from you!  I hope to hear more next week!

Love, Elder Devin Jay Hunter
P.S.  Kirk out
P.P.S. Tell Papa I love him!