Friday, March 22, 2013

Beware the Ides of March

Dear Family,
The weather here has been quite crazy...  Last week it was spring, and beautiful!  March 15.  In the world, it is the Ides of March.  In Hungary, it is one of their independence days.  Pretty cool.  Google did some pretty art work for the day, if anyone saw that.  Anyway.  Friday we had an extended P-Day, and we decided to go to Esztergom, the biggest cathedral in Hungary, maybe even Eastern Europe.  So... We went!!  But, it snowed.  All day.  It was crazy, but no one was there, so we had a really nice time.  The adventure was full of transportation problems and a lot of waiting, but inside was absolutely gorgeous and we got to go on a tour of the treasury.  They had some really neat stuff there, a lot of famous stuff in the Catholic church, and it was incredible.  My favorite part was looking at the fine details in all of the sewing.  They had some absolutely stunning robes for the priests.  I made a friend with Árpád.  He checked our tickets when we walked in, and he kept telling me what to look at.  I got a personal tour from him through the gallery, all in Hungarian.  Wow!!  Sometimes I understand!!  It was beautiful and really cool though.  But, in a missionary related note, everyone loves hearing about missionary work, I gave out a Book of Mormon on the trip!!  Yep.  Inside of a Catholic church.  WHAT?!  I was kind of terrified, but I really felt like I should.  I was talking to Tony, the ticket guy, trying to ask him what was in the exhibit and how much it would cost.  He asked me if I was a student, I said no, he said why are you here?  We aren't encouraged to talk about our church when we are in other churches, so I just told him that I was a missionary, and then the questions started going and then all four of us missionaries were involved with this discussion about our church and one of the Elders mentioned the difference between our churches is the Book of Mormon and modern revelation, and then we kind of ended the conversation, and I decided to give him the copy of the Book of Mormon I had brought.  So cool.  It was a really incredible day.  I am so grateful to be a part of this work.

This is me and a pretty view of the Duna, inside Esztergom.
Mom.  Just so you know.  I am serving in Buda.  My area technically covers the 12th district, but that mostly just pertains to tracting.  There are a bunch of missionaries in this area, because I am in the same area as the mission office, so we have secretary Elders as well as the Assistants to the President, and two other companionships of Elders.  Biggest district I have ever served in, as well as the most compact.  It is neat!
As far as St. Patrick's Day is concerned, no one celebrates it.  I did get a text from an American member that said, If you don't wear green I will find you, and I will pinch you.  I had figured that this year was the year to wear no green, but I did anyway.  Old habits die hard.  I was actually on a train a couple of months ago with some Irish girls, and I asked them if they pinch people for not wearing green on St. Patrick's Day, and they thought that was like... the most awful idea ever.  They were so sad--Everyone will think that Irish are mean!  Ha.  Funny, but yeah, no real celebrations here.
Sister Jeppson goes home next week.  That is weird.  One of my companions is finally dying.  I have realized I probably will never kill a companion.  I will probably be a senior companion until the day I go home.  Szegény.  We are getting eleven new sisters next week, so we are all basically training... I bet all of the sisters in Hungary are in a tri-panionship... (Keep those prayers coming!!!)  Zone Conference is tomorrow, and that is exciting.  It is going to be a long one, but it should be pretty good!  After church I was high fiving an Elder, when President Smith walked by and said I couldn't hit the Elders and that I was going to need to talk to him about that in interviews on Tuesday.  I love interviews!!  So, I really hope that happens.
I am actually really kind of struggling right now.  Nothing big, but it is really hard to keep working and to keep going when our investigators don't show up to anything we plan.  I continue to be super positive, and I smile all of the time, but it is really, really hard sometimes to just keep going.  But, I eat some chocolate, take a big breath, and keep going.  God doesn't expect us to be awesome, or to do everything right.  But he wants us to keep going!  Of course we have to work in order to return to our Heavenly Father.  He is just.  He doesn't require EVERYTHING from us, He just requires what is required.  I don't know if that makes sense, but I liked it.  We have certain things we need to be doing continuosly so we can grow and become more like His son.  The commandments were given to us, not so we would be limited in our actions, but so we could become liberated and become more like He truly is.  It is incredible.  I am so honored and blessed to be a servant of God.  I am grateful for the opportunity I have, everyday, to put on the name of Christ.  I won't be able to do that forever--but I can take Christ's name upon me in my words and my actions, and I will be able to be an example of the believers as I apply His atonement in my life, everyday.  I know that God loves us all, and that we are His children.  Because we are His children we have aquired some of His attributes.  We just need to refine them, and use them until we can fully appreciate the goodness of God.  Wow.  It will take some time.  But, we will never be perfect in this life.  That is why eternity is so awesome!!
Best of luck to everyone this week!
Sok szeretettel,
Kennedy nővér


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