Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Week 34 (March 18-25, 2013)

Well, my world has been turned upside down this morning. This is how it went.
*Ring ring*
Me: "What in the world? Why is president calling us before 8:00? President only calls at this time if someone is going to be a trainer..."
Elder Christensen: "Oh my goodness! You're going to be a trainer!!"
Me: "Pft, yea right! But have we done anything wrong lately...?"
Elder Christensen: "Not that I know of!"
Me: "Alright, here goes nothing! .... Hello?"
President: "Hello Elder Alldredge! I have some good news and some bad news. Bad news is that your current companionship will be coming to an end today. Good news is that you are actually going to be training a new missionary this next transfer!"
The rest is kind of a blur. The end!

So that is what's going down with me. I was hoping to stay in Pécs again with Elder Christensen but it looks like I'll be getting half of my wish. It was an honor to work with him these past few weeks. We had a really fun and successful transfer together. The good thing is that he is going to stay in the same district as me so I'll be able to see him once a week in district meetings!

Within the incoming group there are going to be 5 Elders and 11 Sisters. I don't think it has quite sunken in yet that I will be one of the five trainers. Wow. But I don't think there's a better place to start in Hungary than Pécs! I'm stoked beyond belief. It's going to be a blast and a half.

Lots of great things happened to us this week. We got "let in" 9 times this week. Crazy! From one apartment building we were able to get 6 phone numbers which is pretty unheard of... at least in my experience. We had a really cool experience just yesterday while tracting. An older lady answered the door and Elder Christensen did a quick switch to his approach and simply said, "hello! We represent our church and we have a really special message about Jesus Christ." then she let us right in and we taught her for a little bit. She was adorable and just a super spunky lady.

We also had Zone Conference this week in Budapest. It was a great training and we were let loose in Budapest to do "real life role plays". We were supposed to street and give strong testimony about The Book of Mormon. The first person we stopped was actually from Kecskemét and lived right next door to some of the members who I knew really well when I served there! How awesome is that? We were able to get her number and pass it on to the missionaries in Kecske.

On a sour note, we did get "dogged" quite a bit this week. But it helped us come up with our new saying, "finding is always the best when you get dogged!!" It's turning out to be very true. At least for me, when I get dogged by someone, going out and finding isn't something I'm itching to do, but it's always been soooo worth it.

I hope all is well with all of you! And get this! Missionaries are allowed to email anyone now! So if you want to shoot me an email. Please do! Email: cameron.alldredge@myldsmail.net

Well, that's about it for me on my side of the waters. My email for next week will have some information about one of Hungary's newest missionaries!!

Start your day off right with some studies from The Book of Mormon.

Sok Szeretettel,
Alldredge Elder

Monday, March 18, 2013

week 33 (March 11-18, 2013)

Sziasztok Mindenki!

Before I forget: Next week I will be emailing on Tuesday. We get our transfer calls next week. I really REALLY hope I will be able to stay in Pécs another transfer! 

Also: The place I usually upload my pictures is being lame today and not working... Bummer because I had a lot of rad pictures for this week. BUT I will just send double next week.

Hungary got hit with a HUGE blizzard this past week. I guess thousands of cars were stranded, there were tons of accidents and a few people died. We had to walk out in it for a bit to get to a program we had. The wind was insane! You couldn't look up, and it was snowing sideways. While walking on the street, if we hit a patch of ice the wind would sometimes start to push us down the street! Some places got over a meter of snow. Bleh, it was horrible. The weather is supposed to be getting better here this week, thank goodness.

Last Tuesday, I completed my life long dream (since being on my mission) to give a pass-along card to someone as they ride by on a bike. It was a HUGE accomplishment for me. I've tried several times to do this, but when you hold a little card out to someone passing on a bike and they don't take it, you look pretty dumb. SO, while we were walking down a hill, a guy on his bike was pedaling his way up. I held out the card as we passed and he TOTALLY took it and said "thanks!" as he rode away! IT WAS SO AWESOME!

Speaking of awesome things, while tracting the other day an old lady answered the door and said the English equivalent of, "sup dudes!?" it made my day. It caught me way off guard because I was just about to start formalizing her. I had to stop and laugh for a second after I realized what happened. She was super cute and nice!

On Friday, the branch held a Ping Pong Tournament. It was loads of fun! One of the members in the presidency has played with the Bishop in Kecskemét who is actually a professional ping pong player!! So, he killed the competition to say the least. Elder Christensen ended up getting second place! He's so awesome! The only thing I won was the tie contest on the side... I was the fastest. (woot)

I don't know how to transfer into this story, so here it goes: This week, we set up to meet with a guy we found on the street. He gave us an address of where to meet him and he said he'd be on the second floor in the building. When we arrived at the address, we found ourselves at a HUGE office building. We walked in and went up to the second floor where we were met by a really nice secretary who sat us down in a massive office and asked what we wanted to drink. We just said water so she brought us this super fancy water in these glass bottles. (so rad) A few minutes later the man walked in with a super nice suit and the secretary brought him his coffee and we ended up teaching this really important boss guy right in his office! Crazy experience. He was really super cool though and wants to come to church with his family next month.

We also met with another man this week who is progressing really well. We brought a member with us who is around his same age (they're both in their low 50's). As we started the program, the two men were formalizing each other, sitting very proper, and all that jazz. Within 40 minutes, without us saying a single word yet, their chairs were pointed into each other and they were sitting back and all relaxed with their feet up, (we were on the other side of a coffee table) and they were just chatting it up! They were telling jokes, and having a grand old time. It turned out that they see the same doctor and they were just shooting the breeze. After about 50 minutes I think they realized that we were there too and remembered why we all had gathered in the first place. It was just really funny to watch this friendship develop right in front of us. Which is good, because now the investigator will know someone really well when he comes to church next week!

On a spiritual note, we met with a different man this week for the first time. We had tracted into him and we were able to get in contact him and set up for this past week. We started from the beginning and taught him the Restoration. After reciting the first vision, I starred him right in the eyes and testified while imagining him tearing up... it totally worked! I just kept going until tears started coming out of his face. Yay for the Spirit! We'd be nothing without it.

Once again, I'm sorry there's no pictures for this week... I know you all wanted to see my cute face.

Read Alma 36. It's pretty much the best conversion story of all time.

Much love,
Sok Szeretettel,
Alldredge Elder

Monday, March 11, 2013

Week 32 in Hungary (March 4-11,2013)


I would like to start my email by a text we received from an investigator who was cancelling our program last week. (They are trying to learn English)
It reads: "Please no wait on me today! I am sick 3 day since. I cannot still to talk. Me pain throat. I cold and feel myself unwell. I need puke. Sorry! I lies in the bed. I need fast recovery because tomorrow begin school. Next occaission you will be correct my mistake if this free ask for you. Have nice day! Bless God!"

I'm pretty sure my favorite part is "Bless God!" Elder Christensen and I had a good laugh about it until we realized that this is probably what WE sound like to everyone... It was a funny, yet very humbling experience.

Other than that, this last Friday was "Women's Day"! It's another day to celebrate the existence of women besides on Mother's Day. It was cool to see that a lot of the women out on the street had a flower or two in their hand. The branch put on an activity where all the men read poems to the women and the Elders sang some special numbers in between. It was a nice program!

Yesterday was our Branch Conference so we had President Smith there. He and his wife gave great talks and it was a swell meeting. Our investigator (now member) received the Aaronic Priesthood yesterday. That was such an amazing experience. He's excited to pass the sacrament next week.

The weather here has been SO nice lately. It's been sunny and in the 70's. How perfect! There is supposed to be a really big holiday on Friday this week to celebrate the soldiers and heroes in the past. Everyone gets out of school and work and there's going to be some really cool celebrations going on! I'm really excited to see it.

A nice old lady let us into her house this week while we were tracting. After a short lesson, she gave us some egg decoration things that have a cool Hungarian tradition behind them. They hang decorated eggs on trees and plants here for Easter. It's quite interesting! 

Something really interesting happened on Saturday. Two of our programs were with new men who we found the week before. In our first encounter, we only introduced The Book of Mormon and suggested 3 Nephi 11 to read. They both invited us back. The first man yelled at us for a good 45 minutes about how it's impossible that Jesus appeared to ancient America and how there should not be ANYthing more than the Bible. He was getting super heated and we calmly addressed all of his concerns but he wasn't having any of it. Before we left, we gave him 2 Nephi 29 to read... I find it hilarious because the chapter is about people like him. So great. Anywho, the NEXT guy was SO cool. He was saying, "why wouldn't Christ appear to those people in America too?? God loves everyone! It only makes sense!" His program went super well and we anticipate a great progression from him.

We also jumped off of a wall this week. We saw an a apartment building that looked perfect for tracting. The only problem was that there was a little fence with a little wall to get to it from the street we were on. We decided just to jump down off of the wall to save time instead of going all the way around. It was dark and we figured the drop to be about 3 feet. Nope. It was about 6.5 feet. I watched Elder Christensen jump down and I just about died when he disappeared into the darkness. He managed to stick the landing. I however, was not so lucky. I ended up doing some sort of ninja roll... Or ninja somersault... Okay I just ate it pretty hard. Happy now? If it looked as funny as it felt, I really wish I could've seen it. Elder Christensen got a good kick out of it though. Oh and don't worry, I'm fine. I just got some dirt on my shoulder. Brushed it right off.

Cool. Well don't jump off of surprisingly high walls and read from The Book of Mormon. That's my advice for the week.

Sok Szeretettel,
Alldredge Elder

 This is Elder Christensen on the ground from the wall we jumped off.  It was a LOT taller than we thought...

 Who wouldn't want to graffiti a fat blue cat!?

 Beautiful weather we've been having.

 All of the women in the branch on Women's Day!

Monday, March 4, 2013

Week 31 (Feb.25-March 3, 2013)

 The big day!! Us with László.

 The young women... Plus Bence
 Elder Christensen and I in the main square

 The famous lock wall.

 Locked inside the cage!!

 Youth activity

 The whole family on Saturday

 Beautiful city sunset!

I just wanted to be annoying.

The baptism happened last week! Yay! It was so incredible. I'm so happy for him and his family. I was asked to give the opening prayer and a surprise talk while he was getting changed. It was seriously so great. I was also one of the witnesses! What a great experience. Then yesterday I stood in the circle to give him the Holy Ghost. I loved every bit of it! When meeting with him afterward, I asked him how he felt about all of it. He described it as all feeling very natural. He related it to holding his children in his arms for the first time after they were born--just a very natural feeling. What a great explanation! 

It's crazy to think that I got my call over a year ago! I did not know that it was going to be THIS great when I opened that envelop and read where I was headed off to.

Our super standard streak however, was broken this week. We were just one number short of super standard and that was having investigators at church. I texted them all Saturday and Sunday morning and we were planning on 8 but only 1 actually showed up... Bummer, but we're bouncing back strong this week and trying for it again.

I guess I didn't give much more information about my new companion! He's from Logan and he's such a great, hard worker. I've loved serving with him so far. He's really into sports. Namely basketball, tennis, and volleyball. Like I said, he's a super relaxed and chill guy. I'm pretty sure if I walked up to him and kicked him in the shin right now he wouldn't even say anything. I won't try it... but I am kind of interested in what he would do, I'll be honest. Anywho, he's a super stellar guy and I'm really enjoying serving with him.

We had a funny experience this week where we got locked in some sort of foyer of a building. I've never seen anything like this before but there was some sort of cage door that let people in and out of the building. We timed it poorly and left the building as some other people were coming in. The cage door locked itself after the people entered so we couldn't open that door, so we turned around to open the actual doors to the building but those too had locked themselves. We were literally stuck in a cage. I managed to be able to reach my arm through the slots and I just started pushing peoples call box buttons until someone unlocked the door from their apartment. Crazy time!

We had a new guy in our English class this past week who had to have been the most animated person I have ever met. He's was hilarious! As he was trying to speak English his hands and arms were going all over the place and his face was priceless. Every time we would help him with a word he'd say, "OH YEA!! OHHH! YES YES! OH THAT'S THE WORD!" It was awesome.

On Saturday we met with a couple who are in their 70's. We walked up the stairs because we weren't sure what floor they were on and we didn't want to miss their door. They ended up being on the 8th floor and when we finally got there we were pretty out of breath so the husband took us to the elevator and seriously taught us how to use it! It was super funny. They were such a sweet old couple.

There was also a really fun youth activity this week where we all make our own little props and took a bunch of pictures together! I'll be sure to send a few of them. It was super fun and they youth really enjoyed it! Great times.

Well, that's about it for me!! Everything is going great here. We're all happy and healthy.

I don't want you to read from The Book of Mormon this week... I want you to study from it. There's a difference.

Alldredge Elder