Tuesday, February 24, 2015

It's almost been a Year or so...

Time is just flying by. This transfer ends in a week. 

We are going to Peles in Sinaia on Wednesday. Its an incredible castle, look it up. We achieved our zone goal, and our district won the competition - we had 348 lessons this transfer, and we are getting some T-shirts or something I guess… sick. 
Then I have a Branch Financial Audit on Thursday with some guy from Hungary... that'll be real interesting. And then we have to catch a bus that night to Cluj-Napoca, another one of the most beautiful cities in the mission. We get in at 3 in the morning and have to make it to Zone conference at 9. Ce sa fac? Asa e viata.... . 
This week has been adventurous, as always. Today we were walking to the church, down this little hill and about to pass another church and this old lady comes out the church, passes gas super loud, and then laughs, hahaha.  I had to hide behind the wall and died laughing. 
Mission life is crazy sometimes. It's been kinda weird mentally recently, just because I have to worry about the craziest stuff. Just doing a bunch of stuff that I have no clue how to do, then doing it…just relying on God. It's amazing how real it is. And how He just works in these mini-miracles that you many times don't realize until a while later. I feel like this has been a huge part of my mission. I've had lots of thoughts this week looking at my mission and all of the "how did I do that?" moments.  Realizing how real and incredible God is and the way he works through small means so many times. The mini-miracles that have happened here in Romania are amazing. 
I mean, the gospel has been here for only 25 years and we are laying this foundation and tearing it up and re-laying parts. But literally almost everything that is working is a miracle in itself. Sometimes I wish I could have one of those knock a door, get let in, convert a family, get 25 other referrals missions (okay I know I exaggerated that), but then I LOVE it here. The growth is taking on and the foundation it is laying to show people true joy and freedom is incredible.  I love it. This life is so cool. I am learning in this weird and miraculous way that is solidifying the gospel into the depths of my heart. I can't always put my finger on exactly how I have changed, even after almost a year. But I see and feel it when I reflect. 
We have dinner with the Branch every Sunday. We don't have many members and we working for them to have social lives and not just cling on missionaries. So it's a weird balance :) It's great though. We have a film night activity and we watched The Lego Movie! We got it in Romanian. It's an awesome, funny movie! I bet it is cooler in English though! "Everything is Awesome" song was "totul este super!" in Romanian, haha.
We have been working to find ways to make missionary work awesome and introduce people to the lifestyle of the gospel and the blessings thereof. So we invited members, friends and contacted people to come play basketball with us a few times this week. We met some legit people. There are some decent players here in Romania. It's been super fun and making friends is the best. I am getting better at basketball again. I'm getting my hops back and then looking to improve them. We are planning on getting back into shape this next transfer.
Elder Gunsay and I eat super healthy. I haven't eaten so much fish and beans and veggies before and I've gotten way into humus on my mission, too. So my health is okay!
Also, we've been teaching these two ladies English and The Gospel. It is ridiculous. This lady who was miraculously guided to the church, brought her friend. Her friend catches on okay.. but the lady was struggling with the translation of "Eu" in Romanian being "I" in English. So we ask her, how to you say I in english?  and she says "uhh.. tu" so I just sit there like.. nooo that is "you" in Romanian.. haha. She is pretty sincere when we talk about the gospel.  Her friend is 7th day Adventist. They are pretty legit and we hope they keep wanting to meet up!

So yeah, life is great. Transfers are coming up. Most likely there are going to be some changes in my district. I hope I get to go to Bucuresti, I need a new journal and a geanta because mine totally busted when I missed the train last week. We shall seeeee! 
I am grateful for the reality of the gospel. It is the coolest and most real and worth it life ever. We are so blessed to have it in our family. 
Thank you all for being awesome.   
Elder Cole Boydstun

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Perfect Days…Kitten round 2

This week was awesome.
Sibiu was pretty dead and now we have come in and there is a new fire here. We had 37 lessons total as a district this past week.  While Brasov, one of the biggest most legit branches in the mission, had 48 last week. They also have another set of missionaries and a senior couple and a branch that helps work there, too. So to see that here in Sibiu was super legit.
We had this challenge given in the mission to get perfect days - a lesson with an active member, less active, an investigator and 3 hours of contacting - all in a day. Pretty legit challenge for our mission. Our district had 8 of them total this week (counting as individual companionships). Even one day all 3 of the companionships in our district got one.  We are in a pretty small city with only 6 missionaries total so It is legit.  
We are having fun doing the work, making friends and introducing the awesome lifestyle of the Gospel. The lifestyle with eternal and ridiculously worth it promises, and things are rolling. It is awesome.  Still the frustrations and ups/downs of course, but it is nice to see when we look back and realize what's happening.  So yeah, Missionary work! 
 Being BP is pretty legit. Help from everyone and getting to know people better already, and so many things you don't want to forget.. but it is working out! BP just moved to Germany less than 3 weeks ago.
We found a kitten outside our church.. .we kinda adopted it. Bathed it, gave it some love. It was awesome, then it pooped everywhere in our bathroom and then pooped on my sweater the next day. Like it was really trying to be clean and at least poop on things instead of just on the ground.. but it was nasty and so unexpected haha..
So I left it outside the church. Never trust street kittens man. I told everyone it probably wasn't worth it, this same thing happened in Arad.. but they took it and it will be good for the kitten.
Street puppies are way cooler anyways, they are always happy and just want to play right then and there.

Elder E and I bought these sick ping pong paddles and we play whenever we both have some SHORT free time at the church. We have a games night where everyone plays ping pong and board games so it is legit. Getting way better.

This week was the 25 year anniversary of the church in Romania. There was a broadcast of a meeting in Bucuresti and it was super legit. We got a message from Elder Nelson and everyone was stoked. He did the dedicatory prayer here and talked about it.  There are cool members coming back to church. The adventure of missionary life is rising.  
We are rolling, this place has potential, and we are running with it.  Trying to change this branch in Sibiu and give it life!  
Striving to build Zion, do your part, too. 
I love you all. I'll send pictures sometime this week. 

- Elder Boydstun

Sunday, February 8, 2015

Missing trains is cool...

From Tuesday February 3, 2015

Sorry I didn't email yesterday. Busy crazy day.
Basically we went to this city to adventure. So we got up at 4am, took a bus for a few hours. took a maxi taxi for 30 mins and adventured. Got some cool photos and what not.
On the way back, the bus back to Sibiu was nowhere to be found. Walked all over the AutoGara and checkin schedules.. called numbers. Typical Romanian confusion.
Missed the bus.
Figure there is a train about 2.5 hours later. So now we figure out something to do for that time...
End up walking back into the train station remembering the lady tell us it left at 16:59. We saw a train pull away as we walked up to the station, looked at the tickets and see it was at 16:49.
Cool. missed it.
Luckily we find a bus leaving an hour later. Made it. Successssss!
It happens...it's not an adventure unless something goes wrong. So if a lot of things go wrong and it still works out, it is that much more epic.

This week was solid. 
We went hard contacting for our English Classes. We got, as a district of 6 people, 50 numbers. So legit
Just making friends and living in a beautiful city. ahhh
We are supposed to get some epic contacting photos. So my comp got on my shoulders and we contacted some people. Surprisingly people thought it was cool/funny. 

We also adventured to this gypsy castle palace thing in our city. Supposedly this guy is the gypsy leader or something.. Hard to explain. But he has this crazy house that is all decked out in ridiculous stuff and...Pictures will have to explain. 

We also got our apartment destroyed by Elders L and E. So we came home from some hardcore BP office organizing to a house full of english cards and everything else ridiculous. haha it was pretty hilarious. Our Iron was in the fridge, a bagette in my closet and some salam in my pillow... literally English cards on every surface possible. 

So yeah. I conducted church and had some BP duties this Sunday. Interviewing people. All that goodness. oh and hey, Baielli.. err Alessandro, If you read this. know that this office had no financial organization dude. THANKS MAN , psych :) Man my mission is so sick. I love it. 
We've gotten things more organized and some activities planned. We are going to start doing Institute on Wednesdays. We have a game night on Sat and a film/culture night on Thursdays. And English is starting today. So it's going to be solid. Lots of stuff to do.
I am stoked I get to work with people. Sometimes I just want to be a normal missionary and go do normal work and meet more people on the street, etc. But I've got some cool other work I can do that will make a difference in the long run. Doing all the "other work" as BP is crazy. Organizing, cleaning stuff up, calling people, getting info and setting up church and activities. Wild stuff. But it is cool too.
Make some friends this week. Listen to someone's story. You'll learn something, I promise.

I love you. God loves you more. Christ is the way and the light.
I know it's true. 
 Elder Boydstun

Tuesday, February 3, 2015

Sibiu is a Dream

From January 26, 2015

​I really LOVED Moldova...but it is kind of nice to be back in Romania, completely understanding people again and all that Romanian-ness.
Transfers were really cool. The 14 hour train wasn't too bad this time. Elder Montoya and I had good conversations and what not. The guy who checked our bags at the border was being funny and then we had a decent amount of sleep.
Bucaresti was pretty crazy as always. Such a big city with so much going on everywhere. A meeting at the office made us miss our train so we had to stay the night and catch the one leaving the next day.
My district is soo cool though. We all get along and are just going to do hard work and make it a good time. Serious though, Sibiu is so incredible. A beautiful German/Romanian city filled with cool architecture and what-not. Cobblestone streets, bridges, colorful old buildings and happy crazy people everywhere.
The 6 hour train ride through the mountains was a dream come true and I am feeling great. It's always nice to do work in a place you love. When I look around I can't believe I live here.
My comp is the man. Elder Gunsay... funniest little happy man ever. He is always keeping it real but having fun and making everyone laugh. He's into yoga, being intelligent, singing and being awesome. 

Anyways, things are pretty intense. The first night I got here, we were getting all settled and about to make dinner with Elders Latiti and Everton when we get a call from the Branch President here in Sibiu. We go to meet up with him at the church and he basically tells us he is leaving to live in Germany for at least 4 months. Then he told us we are running the branch now and told us all the stuff we need to do. Hahaha, so awesome. We are literally the youngest district in the mission and we are running the church here in Sibiu. 
President Ivory called me up and told me I am going to be Branch President. So I guess I am going to be doing other work here, too. It is going to be so legit though. I've totally got this...I think, haha.
We've got some pretty cool friends here already, but are looking to blow it up even more this transfer. We have some cool challenges from our ZL's  so we are trying to get awesome in-action photos and go hard english contacting. So it is pretty epic. My mission is the coolest... seriously.
Anyways, this place rules. I will send some photos. Life is good. Busy, but a great time.
va iubesc pe toti!
Elder Boydstun