Friday, August 23, 2013


Another wonderful email form Heidi!!  We look forward to receiving her emails  each week. She is truly being guided and taught by the spirit as she is engaged in the Lord's work. It is  a marvelous work and a wonder.  NO pictures again..she forgot her camera cord..  :(

Moin moin meine liebe Familie!
Once again it's been an incredible week for me! 
First a few cool and interesting facts. . .
Germans wear their wedding rings on their right ring finger instead of on their left . . . Except now some of the younger people are starting to switch over to the left hand . . . So it is kind of confusing!  Haha I was thinking of wearing a ring on my finger just to keep the guys away . . . I guess I will have to wear one on each hand just to make the point clear ;)
A typical breakfast here in Germany consists of Musli and Musli.  It is pretty much oats mixed with other goodies.  It's super yummy and it reminds me of a Dad breakfast :D. 
Mom, you know how you have a sign in our bathroom at home that says 'Salle de bain'?  I feel like in the U.S. anything with French written on it is considered cute and good decor ha ha.  Here in Deutschland it is the same thing only with English!  Tons of people have little decorations with English writing on it, stores, etc.  And it's quite  funny because often times people don't even know what the English says . . . And I hear English music here more often than German music. 
Some German foods I have eaten recently:  Wienerschnitzel, Döner Düner, and Rotko (didn't spell that right.... but it is red cabbagy stuff that is really yummy)
Okay, now let's get down to business . . . and defeat the Huns . . . :D
This week it has become quite cold!  Don't worry though, I've only had to wear my winter coat twice this week!  It has also been quite rainy.  (I am now officially German . . . Germans love talking about the weather).  I also would like to mention one of my goals I have set for myself this transfer.  That is to go dancing in the rain, sing  "singin' in the rain", and click my heels together.  I'm waiting till I buy rain boots though ;)
So really quick let's take a nostalgic moment. . . on July 24th I arrived in Berlin, tired, sweaty, exhausted, and looking rather scary (awake and traveling for 24 hours).  But we went out on the streets for the first time that day and talked to people.  I kinda felt like I was being thrown to the wolves a little bit, and overall it was a huge adrenaline rush.  It was quite scary stopping random people on the street and starting a conversation about God . . .  I remember people looked at me like I was crazy (probably not just for the conversation ;)) and they didn't really understand anything I said, so they looked to the experienced missionary at my side for further explanations.  But I love thinking back to this day because it shows me how much progress I have made.  I have been here for less than a month and I have learned SO much.  Hallo!  Ich bin missionarin für die Kirche Jesu Christi der Heiligen der Letzten Tage!!
Now it is August 19th.  Speaking with EVERYONE has become such a fun part of my days here.  Just yesterday we went into a nearby city to find a new family in our ward.  I had never been there before, I didn't know any people, but I greeted everybody with a warm smile and a greeting.  And!  Good news!  People don't have to ask Sister Nilson to translate my German anymore :D  ha ha.  but anyway, yesterday as we were getting off the bus a man came up and began speaking to me.  He is now one of our new investigators!  Sometimes I don't understand how the 'work' works.  I feel like more often than not the people that are truly prepared for the gospel find us, rather than us finding them. The key is that we have to be in the right place at the right time.  This man pretty much came over to us, began asking us about our church, got super excited when we talked to him about the Book of Mormon, and wanted to learn more!  We didn't even have to ask for an appointment, he asked us!  I love it when I meet people and I can just see the desire in their eyes.  They have such a strong desire to find Christ and His church.  They want the truth. 
This week I went to our service project for the first time. (normally we go every week).  It is called Tafel, and pretty much we sort donated food into piles and then take people around and give them food for the week (people that can't afford food on their own for the regular price).  It was so cool!!!!  And it was a great way for me to learn the names of my fruits and vegetables in German ;).  As I was taking people individually around and helping them gather food, I helped one woman in particular who was absolutely amazing.  As I went to greet her at the front of the line and take her around she greeted me with a big smile, said 'hallo', and introduced herself and her young daughter.  (Ha ha, normally Germans aren't that friendly ;)).  Of course I responded in a similar manner and very soon she was talking to me about my nametag.  She asked me if I was a nun, which made me laugh, and then I explained to her that I was a missionary and a little bit about the work we were doing in Germany.  She was so cute and so happy!  She kept on telling me that I was so 'beautiful, cute, and nice!'  She started telling me about her religious past and beliefs, and was very curious about mine.  She was born into the Catholic church, but she had left it because she said that the church had been pressuring her and the other members in political matters (in Mexico).  She also expressed to me the hard time she has had living in Germany the past several months.  She is from Mexico, lived in the U.S. for a year, and is now living in Germany.  I offered our help to her when she needed it, and she almost looked like she was going to cry.  Sweetest lady ever!  She wants her daughter to learn about God and Jesus Christ and she just about leaped when I told her about Primary.  When I told her that kids met together with teachers, learned and sang songs, she was so ecstatic!  I ended up getting her contact information to make an appointment with her this week.  I gave her a card with our contact information and also the address of the church, and this was her reaction:  "Ah!  You have a Gottes Dienst?!  I want to come THIS Sunday!"  And there is the story for our second new investigator for the week :).  The Lord has prepared people for us, we just have to find them, or be in the right place for them to find us. 
The language is soooo awesome!  I know that it wouldn't be this easy if I was learning on my own....  I definitely see the hand of the Lord in helping me to learn.  I am able to confidently give people directions when they ask, teach lessons, and communicate rather well with people when I need to.  ISN'T THAT COOL?!  Missionary miracles :)
Today we went exploring in Hamburg and it was sooooooo Toll!!!! I forgot my camera cord though so I can't send pictures this week sorry :(.  We went to the Rathaus and went on a tour which was super cool!  We did the tour in German and actually understood most of it.  It was sooo beautiful inside!  We also went to the St. Peter's church which was equally amazing.  I AM IN HEAVEN HERE.  It makes me want to continue studying art history . . . I took a moment to sit in a pew and say a prayer.  It was quiet, and the people were all reverent inside.  It was very peaceful, and it was cool to be with Christians of all different churches, all gathering together remembering Christ.  Finally we went down by the Harbour, saw some boats, and ate at a cute restaurant on the side of the water.  You would love it here!!!  We ate Wienerschnitzel which is a German specialty. 
Also, I just need to say something about the ward here.  The ward is INCREDIBLE.  I love living in Langenhorn :) :).  We have also gotten to be friends with a lot of people living in the community as well.  Evangelisch, Catolisch, Moslem, it doesn't even matter!

Ha ha, also remember how we thought I would fit in because of my blonde hair and everything?  Well actually I have learned from several people that I actually stand out . . . This one lady told me it was because I was 'too cute', another woman told me it was because I was 'too smiley.' ha ha at least those are good things right?? 
Also, I mentioned at an Essen Termin the other day that our family comes from Zwickau and they started laughing!  Haha I was enlightened by the differences between the two areas.  Apparently people in Zwickau all drive tiny cars . . . And they have funny accents . . . And it is a very different place because of their past with the Berlin wall.  Zwickau, along with many other German cities, has been through some rough times.  This sister was explaining to me about the past, and while I couldn't understand much of what she was saying, I could understand her gestures and fear as she talked about guns and controlling the people. Wow, every day I become more and more grateful that I am an American.  Seriously, don't take anything for granted.  We live in a land of so many opportunities and freedoms.  I love Deutschland, but there are some things I miss from home.
I hope you have a good week!!!  Happy birthday Dad and Nakita this week!!!!  I hope you both have WONDERFUL days :) :D :) :D
Ich liebe euch!!
Sister Heidi Shelley  

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