Monday, September 9, 2013


                                                                                      September 9. 2013

Moin moin!  It's been a great week for Sister Nilson and I. 

We have had such success!!!!  Oh my goodness I love this area. 

Last Monday we met with A***(from Ivory Coast, french speaker, and my best friend :D).  Our lesson with him was incredible.  He was so happy and so different from any other time we've met with him.  His faith has become so much stronger since we met with him.  We invited him to have a part in missionary work and he was so excited!  We gave him a Book of Mormon in German and invited him to give it away and he accepted the challenge!  He kept on talking about Paul in the Bible and how he has always been one of his role models.  He was so nervous, but we bore our testimony that when we share our testimony with others it helps us to be stronger ourselves.  And since he is always struggling with problems in his life it would be a good way for him to turn outwards rather than inwards.  He also told us something that was really touching.  He said that he has been trying to pray every morning when he wakes up, to thank God for the new day, and he has noticed a difference in his life.  He still hasn't done that much better with reading the scriptures on his own, but on the days that we send him a text with a scripture and our testimony/experience, he always remembers it.  As members we can help each other so much by just supporting one another and strengthening each other in the faith.  AND, he told us that he will teach us how to make fufu!!!  So we are probably doing that this week or next.  Yeah, I love A***!!!  And we speak a little French together which is fun.

It's really been incredible for me because I have been able to relate very well to him and another less active member in our ward. Sister Nilson said she has never seen these people happier since I came here. It's such a testimony to me that I am where I am supposed to be.  There is something unique about me that I have been able to get through to these two people in our ward.  And together Sister Nilson and I have something special and unique about our companionship in the way we teach and show our love for others.   

We had a wonderful lesson with our new investigator, E*** this past week. He is the amazing man from Ghana!!!!  The Spirit was so strong and I was able to invite him to be baptized. HOLY CROW.  He said that he would.  I felt so guided in what I should say to him, and I felt like he was so ready. He wasn't sure if he could come to church yesterday but then he surprised us by coming into sacrament meeting about half-way through.  We were on our forth week of no investigators at church (SO ROUGH), and I almost started crying I was so happy!  He had such a big smile on his face and he looked great!  We were singing a congregational hymn and immediately Jakob (My owl city buddy) shared his hymn book with him, and everybody welcomed him in.  In our investigator class we talked about missionary work and it was super cool.  E*** is awesome!  He was expressing his feelings about Germans in contrast to Africans . . . Here in Germany he said that religion is not that important to many people.  Almost everybody calls themselves 'Christian' except they don't live like it.  He said that in the North of Ghana it is so hard for people who want to follow Christ.  If you want to be baptized into a different church or even attend church that is contrary to the will of the tribal leader, he can take your wife from you, destroy your property, life, and everything.  He explained that in that situation, people realize better how precious a knowledge of God is.  How precious it is that you can be baptized into God's true church.  And for him, he is ready to make this commitment here in Germany.  When he speaks about God it just touches me.  I am excited to work with him more. 

Do you remember that woman I wrote about who I met at TAFEL (service project) who was so friendly!  We gave her a church tour a few weeks ago but she was very cautious with us. Holy crow she is so receptive to the spirit, and I know that God has heard the prayers of sister Nilson and I in her behalf. She came to our stake primary activity on Saturday with her fiance and her little girl, and she was immediately taken in by everyone. We had given her a tour of our church a few weeks ago, but she wanted another one at the stake center with her fiance. She wanted him to see our church too!  All of her comments were so sweet, and she could sense the spirit in the building. A man asked her if she was a member and she said, 'not yet!' I am so excited to see her progress. She told me privately that she felt something in our church that was different than anything she has ever felt before.  She knew that it was God's church on the earth. She recognizes that she has been prepared for the gospel, and she told us that before she dies she needs to be baptized into God's true church on the earth. She has so many questions, and with every question she asks we always have answers for her!  I gave her a Book of Mormon in Spanish and she was so excited to read it. She was so careful with it! She also explained to us that she knew that her fiance wasn't as prepared as she was to accept the gospel, but that in time he would. She told us that she wanted us to give him the German book of Mormon ourselves. We gave it to him, bore our testimonies, and gave a little introduction to the two of them.  We heard A*** telling him to go and put the books carefully in the car, 'These books are like the Bible, they are scriptures,  they can't just be thrown around.  You need to be careful with them.'   I almost feel like this woman could be a missionary with us! She is so enthusiastic about the gospel and it is so inspiring to me. She was even saying, "I think it is great that all of the members of the church pay a percentage of their income.  I would pay 20 percent of my income to this church!"  She loves the Spirit that she feels and the goodness from the members.  She said that the thing that she loves the most is the service she sees rendered by church members and missionaries.  She loves that we live Christian lives.   We are always trying to better ourselves.  She said that in Mexico she saw Elders and Sisters running around serving people, and here in Germany (we are a little more scarce ;)) but we do the same thing.  We ran into her and her little family yesterday and she jumped out of the car almost while it was still moving.  Running over to us she said, 'sisters!  Sisters!  I have begun reading in the Book of Mormon!  I'm only on page 5 but I have started reading it!'  She had lots of questions for us already.  She said that they would give us a ride to wherever we were going just so that she could talk with us more about the book of Mormon.  She said, 'we were just talking about you! I was telling R*** that you Sisters are always so HAPPY!  But he says it is not possible.  But look, you two are smiling right now!  I know that it is because of the church.  I want that for us too.'  

I was feeling a little discouraged a couple weeks ago, because our investigators weren't really going anywhere, and I felt like they just had no desire to progress in the gospel. But now meeting A***and E*** (man we invited to be baptized), I see very clearly that there are prepared people. We just have to find them. We can invite, and invite, and invite, but unless people have a desire there isn't anything else we can do. 

Everything is going wonderful here.  I am excited for this next week.  Hope everything is wonderful there.  Love you all!

Sister Heidi Elaine Shelley

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