Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Being senior mostly means I have to pretend to speak Hungarian.

Hi family!

I am still in Hungary, still doing missionary work!  The only difference is that I don't really know the people, which is a blessing, and a curse!  Because I don't know the people it is just hard to remember and things are hard... but, because I don't know the people I can ask them ALL to be baptized.  Two people have committed to a baptism date since Sister Peterson and I have been together, and I imagine that it will keep going up and up!
Saying goodbye to Kecskemét was really hard.  One of my teachers in the MTC said when you leave your first area you feel like you will never love again.  He said you get over it and just keep working.  He's right.  Who knew the MTC teachers would be right so often?  But, saying goodbye was hard.  We are in the same stake here though, and so hopefully I can kick it here until Stake Conference and we can all hang out or something awesome like that.

So long Kecskemét!
The people here speak a ton of English, there is poop in the streets, and a toooon of missionaries.  It is really different for me.  I am starting to really like it though.  I do really like being able to go to the mission home and pick up my mail whenever I want.  I mean, if there were a time in someone's mission to get mail this would be it!!  That is to be read as a subtle hint... Hopefully it came off blunt enough :)
Dad!  I got your great letter.  Thanks for the article.  I am going to share it with my mission president.  I really liked it a lot.  Mom, thanks for sending me a copy of my membership record.  Now that most of those covenants and ordinaces are mostly taken care of, I really need to work on that whole... enduring to the end thing.
Want to see something cool?  This is what I wake up to everyday.
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That is my ceiling!  This is the view out of the window.
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So... turns out I live in a beautiful place!  The green domb is Buda Castle, it has the big courtyard in it where Katy Perry filmed the Firework music video.  On the right there is that mountain thing.  That is Gellert Hegy.  Mom, Dad.  If you remember, that is where there were the three big statues.  You can kind of see the one standing there, she has a leaf in her hand if I remember right.  And then there were the two other statues, one I think is smashing up a serpent, and the other is like running with a torch.  I can't remember exactly, but that could help you out with the area.  It is kind of really dead right now... but hopefully it turns out to be really pretty once spring decides to come.
The work in Buda is going along really great.  Sister Peterson is 21, she went to Cyprus High School, she went to U of U, this is really her first time living away from home, so we are making sure she is learning a lot, but still partying.  She loves to sing.  She has more variety than any radio station I have ever listened to.  She has a boyfriend in Mexico, random, and she eats pasta for almost every meal.  Things are really great here, huh :)  She has been here for 6 weeks now, and says she hasn't seen much of the city, so I am excited to just go off and adventure!  We are hoping we can go get lost for a bit today, and still have time to make it to our programs tonight.
The moment of truth.  How is it really going?  Honestly, it is going great.  I am leading lessons and we really are having a lot of success.  There is a magical thing they use in this city called, tabling.  We set up a table advertized for free stuff, and then we just talk to people when they come up to see what it is all about.  I met a really funny man that moved to Canada during the revolution, ended up in New York, and now he is working on a coin with Obama's face on it to sell.  He was really cool.  He kept getting closer and closer and I was scared he was going to kiss me or something!  Luckily, he only kissed my hand when he left.  Elder Pendleton taught me some good techniques to make people stand further away from me when we talk.  Good times.

So.  Let the truth be told.  There was some problems when I tried to send this, and so it is a little bit late, and some of the email that I typed got erased.  That is how life goes!!  It is amazing here.  I really have noticed God's help in letting me speak the language and I can feel His spirit with me everyday.  Life goes on and I love it.

Sok szeretettel,
Kennedy nővér

Tuesday, February 19, 2013


Dear family,

Let's start with the good stuff!!  Rachel has seriously been called to the best mission in the world.  What missionary wouldn't want to go to New Zealand?!!?  I spent my language study finding out words that I could use to talk about her mission call.... But I mostly just learned how to say New Zealand... which is Új Zéland.  Exotic.  Let me act out what happened that morning that you called.  It was Saturday.  I was sleeping, and I heard the phone vibrate.  I thought it was weird Sister Behunin had set the alarm on the phone, we normally wake up to music.  She turned it off, and then it went off again.  I asked her what time it was, and she said 6:20--Some unknown number keeps calling!!  My heart jumped!!  But then I remembered that Rachel had said the parents would be home Saturday, and that her call probably was coming next week.  And then I heard the phone vibrate again.  Sister Behunin answers, and then I heard dad's voice.  I said, that's my dad!!  I was so excited!!  Congratulations on the call.  I don't know if you recorded the sound or a video, but I would love to get a copy of it :)  I wish I would have thought to stay on and talk longer, but it was good to be with everyone when my favorite person in the whole world got her mission call.  Good luck prepping Rachel, give 'em heaven!!

So.  The exciting news.  Transfers.  Any guesses where I am going???  If anyone paid attention to my end of the phone call, I did say where I thought I was going... and I was right :)

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So that is exciting.  Buda.  We will see how it goes :)

We had an awful and awesome week, all at the same time!!  Half of our scheduled appointments cancelled, and most of the people we wanted to meet with we weren't able to.  Last week I mentioned a lady, Csilla, that we streeted into and got a program set up with her.  We talked to her and had a great program.  She is married and has a cute little two year old girl :)  We did the Restoration with her, gave her a Book of Mormon and scheduled to come back.  Yesterday we went and visited her.  Her whole family was there, excited, and ready to learn about what we were going to teach to them!!  We taught the Plan of Salvation. She loved that there isn't just heaven and hell, and she also loved that the plan was made for her!  We had drawn her the plan on a paper, and she showed to to her husband and said it was for them.  She was so excited when we told them that their family could live together forever.  She and her husband are the cutest.  It was their anniversary.  She said it was on Sunday, and then he said, wrong, it is today!  She laughed and said, I don't pay attention to the dates, I just celebrate being with him.  If I want to buy him a gift, I do it.  I thought it was the sweetest thing. She is the sweetest.  Any.  We had put different tabs into her Book of Mormon, and I had recommened 2 Nephi 2, and during the lesson I asked her if she had read any of it.  She pulled out 2 Nephi 2, had it marked, and then we asked her if she had read anything else. She said she read from the book everyday and that it is going to be useful in her life, and that she wants to do it everyday.  WOW!!  Wow.

Saying goodbye to everyone is really hard.  I am really sad to leave.  I didn"t necessarily think I would be, but I am.  This place is solid.  The ward members.  Incredible.  The investigators.  Awesome.  People are quirky.  They are blessed.  God loves Kecskemét.  So do I :(  I am sad to go!  Buda is going to be cool though.  When I introduce myself I will probably tell them all about how I was here a couple years ago, and I understand a little more.

Oh.  Yeah.  I am going to be a senior companion.  My companion has been in the field for five weeks.  Welp.  Hopefully she knows her way around the city.  I know the Lord will qualify me with my language and that there won't be too many tears!!

We must go onward.  We fear not, for our mother's knew.
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Sok szeretettel,
Kennedy nővér

PS  Rachel is going on a mission!!!!

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

What a winter wonderland.

Dear family,

So excited to hear that Rachel has her mission papers in!  Dad.  I loved your email. It snowed the more this weekend than it has my whole mission combined, so I am a bit envious of you being out on a cruise.  I don't understand what facetiming means... but it sounds dangerous.  Technology.  Scary.  Congratulations to Chelsea for her awesome acceptance into that smart math thing!!  Look at all of the blessings you are receiving for me serving a mission :)

Let's talk about the snow.  Fact.  I love snow.  It is really pretty, and white, and the last snow fall was the perfect consistency for snowmen making.  That didn't happen, but it was still perfect.  We are teaching a part member family, the Rádulyék.  I know I have talked about them before... They live out in the middle of nowhere, so we take a bus out there, and then we walk by foot down a dirt road to get to their house.  Always an adventure.  The weather here has been super nice for winter.  Cold, but never really treacherous.  It seems to only snow when we go out and meet with the Rádulyék.  Literally.  It won't be snowing and then as we start walking to the bus it snows.  This has been happening for like... 7 weeks.  I made the mistake of bringing it up to them... so, whenever it snows they bring it.  They are always really nice and walk us to and from the bus stop.  Ha.  I knew I wouldn't hear the end of it, but we actually ended up getting a ride from a member!  We pulled up and as soon as I see Sándor, the first thing he says is, Kennedy nővér, esik a hó.  That means, Sister Kennedy, it's snowing.  His wife said the same thing to me.  I told them I was going to stay in Kecskemét forever, and so they would be having snow storms on Sundays for a long while... :)

Transfers are coming up next week, and transfer weeks are going to be a little bit different.  We will be taking P-Day on Tuesday and that is when we will find out what is happening for transfers.  Naturally I joke about me staying... but I really think I am leaving.  If I do stay... I will be completely flabbergasted.  So, I will be letting you all know next Tuesday about my fate!

This past week was really weird.  Sister Behunin and I have been working good and having a lot of fun and a lot of success, but our investigators haven't been able to meet.  Everytime we call they don't answer.  It is really weird, and it catches me off guard.  But, we were able to take advantage of that and we got some great finding time in!!  Streeting is terrifying.  Walking up to strangers... fun... So we did it!  It was incredible. We were out for 15 minutes and we had gotten three numbers and gifted one Book of Mormon.  (We have since been able to contact one of them, and have a program set up with her.)  The rest of our hour was not as successful, but we were so stoked to talk to those wonderful people.  I love missionary work.  I absolutely adore it in everyway.  Weird things happen all of the time.  I love it.  I know that I am an instrument for the Lord.  He gives me opportunities.  I either take them or I don't.  We are all given opportunities, literally, every day.  Our Heavenly Father loves us and He wants the best for us.  It is up to us to take advantage of the things coming our way.

Life is a gift.
Sister Kennedy

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

So... It's February already?

I had a surprise visit the other day!  I got a phone call and I heard this guy say that he and I had a similar aquaintance (does that make sense in English?).  At first I was confused and thought he was the boyfriend of someone my companion had taught in a different city, and then he said he knew my Aunt Lisa.  And then he started speaking in English and everything when a lot smoother.  His name is Szilárd and he worked with Aunt Lisa in Iraq!  He was really nice, and he gave me his contact information so if I ever go out to Kaposvár we can talk.  That was funny counting numbers that night, "Oh, and then there is Szilárd, the referral from your aunt."  He was in Kecskemét just for the day, and it was so cool to meet him!

Sister Behunin and I went up to Budapest for interviews with the mission president.  My favorite!  I am really blessed, and I have had a lot of interviews with the mission president.  AH!  What if it is because I am the problem missionary... that would be awful...  But it was really great.  I talked about wanting to serve through December and into January and basically stay here as long as I can.  He told me he would love to keep me, but he can't promise anything because our transfers will probably change again... They keep changing because of new missionaries coming in.  Definitely not a problem, it is an exciting time to be in the mission.  He totally understands my desire it to stay here as long as I can and is willing to help me stay. :)  Yay!

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This is us at the Kecskemét train station... getting ready to go into the big city!!

We are having a lot of success together.  Sister Behunin is a lot of fun and a really good worker.  She speaks really well, and she helps me a lot with my language.  We are working on getting my language skills really understandable, transfers are in two weeks and we think I will be going senior.  Who knows?!  Not me.  But I would rather be overprepared with the language than underprepared.  The people we work with everday are really cool.  It is hard sometimes.  We invite, they commit, we follow up.  Sometimes when we follow up we realize important points have been lost somewhere.  Maybe we didn't teach it well enough, maybe it really is hard to understand the personal relationship we need to God, and so we are working on getting it back to basics.  

The bishop here, Mecséri Oliver, invited us over for dinner and a movie on Sunday.  So, we ate some lunch and then we watched the coolest video!!  I loved it.  It was based on some stake in Illinois and their involvement with family history and how it is so important for people to get involved with family history and then get them to the temples!!  I don't know if it that available for people to watch, but it was really inspring.  That combined with an incredible lesson in Relief Society has really gotten me pumped to work on family history stuff when I get home... I am so excited for it!!  But, I am excited to start really implementing family history more as we teach.  It makes the temple come alice, and I think that is what we miss sometimes.  The temple and family history work aren't different programs, they are the same.  We do family history work so we can go to the temple to do their work so we can be families forever.  Our hearts truly are turned to our fathers and we become a part of something bigger.  I love it!!  Family history.

In other random news.  I found a dress in our apartment a couple of transfers ago.  This is us at Thanksgiving--I am wearing the dress!Inline image 1
So, last week we had a program with Misi, and I wore this dress.  I wasn't wearing the sweater, and he though it was the funniest thing.  He walked in.  First thing he says--cute.  He continued to tell me how it was so funny, but really cool, and that he thought I looked like a belonged in the army.  When I stood up and he saw my boots he just started laughing harder saying how I would be the best in the army.  And then I put on my dark green pea coat.  He started laughing so hard.  I even saluted him when I left.  It was really fun.  But, turns out, it really stuff with him, because on Sunday he kept telling everyone the same story.  I think I might wear that to every program with him from here on out.  That will be a great idea... So great.

The church is the best.  I am so happy because of what I have learned through regular church attendance.  If you think you are too cool for church you need to be humbled!!  Church is the best place for us to be on Sundays.  We can love and support each other.  We lift each other up when we go to church.  In the parable of the lost sheep, one sheep leaves, and the shephard leaves the 99 and to go find him.  It is important for the 99 to stay together.  To work together and to not let anyone else go!!  We need to constantly work--do our visiting teaching, home teaching, and such--so that we can call be encouraged to stay together as our little flock!!

God loves us all.
Sok szeretettel,
Kenned nővér