Monday, November 4, 2013

Week 9

I am currently sitting in the JAE (YSA) office in our stake center writing this email. It is approximately 16:00 (trying to get used to this military time thing...) and it's almost dark outside. What the?! Since we've had daylight savings it gets really dark early. Around 5:30 pm it looks like it's 10 pm. Good thing I brought some Vitamin D......

Last night Sister Kearl and I were talking and I realized that today is my 2 month mark. Holy cow where did the time go. We each read our journal entry from two months ago. Mine was my first day in the MTC and hers was her first day serving in Dortmund.

Sister Kearl and I on halloween. Halloween is kind of lame in Germany.
And if people dress up it is super creepy....not my favorite.....
 This week flew by! Last p-day we were going to visit a castle but it was rainy and windy so we decided to play Risk at the church. Yipee! The simple pleasures of a missionary.....I have never played risk so I wasn't too excited. Especially since Elder Schmidt was explaining the rules in German. ok......but guess who just totally dominated the game?! Me! No one thought I would win but I totally crushed everyone. They didn't think I had a strategy but my strategy was not to have a strategy. Genius! (I totally didn't know what I was doing.....beginner's luck perhaps?) 

That night Elder Schmidt continued to teach me how to solve a Rubic's cube. My life long goal is to figure out how to do it! And I am so's a process....maybe by the end of this transfer I will be able to do it!

The Dortmund Ward missionaries.
Sister Kearl, me, Elder Schmidt, Weidmann, Kent, and Ogden.
This week I also applied for my Visa and Anmelded which is pretty much registering in the city of Dortmund. We went to the Stadthaus which is like the DMV but 500 times worse!!! We waited in line for 1 hour just to get a number. Then we waited another 2 hours to meet with someone and then it took an 1 hour to figure everything out. But I have applied for a Visa. Yay!

Walking to the post office
On Sunday this old man in the ward just handed me a Chinese restaurant card and said "zwolf uhr." haha! I was like, ok. Apparently every transfer he takes all the Dortmund missionaries out to lunch at this Chinese buffet. So hilarious! We went today and it was actually pretty good. They had sushi! Hollah! But it was not very good. 

Elder Weidmann and Sister Kearl had a contest to see who could eat more ice cream. Sister Kearl had 14 bowls of ice cream (like a boss) and Elder Weidmann had 13! My companion totally proud! But this man is so precious. Tonight he is taking the whole ward out to dinner. 
Ok.....that's fine!

Halloween night messing around with some crutches.
Another sister needed them so we were carrying them around all night.....
I also had my first austausch (split). I went to Herne (about a 30 minute train ride away) to be with one of our sister training leaders Sister Bauer and her companion came to Dortmund to be with Sister Kearl. It lasts for 24 hours. It was weird being away from my companion and I may have woken up in the middle of night totally disoriented....special panic moment. 
But I learned so much. 

Sister Bauer is super chill and has been out on her mission for almost a year. We went and taught a lady and her son. She pretty much was a self-referral. She called the church a couple of weeks ago and asked to meet with the missionaries. When we met with her we told her that we picked a baptismal date for Nov 23 for her. She was totally excited about it! Her son was still unsure about getting baptized but he wanted to learn more. A couple days later I got a call from Sister Bauer and she said that they called and said they wanted to move the baptismal date to Nov. 30 so that her son could get baptized too. What?! So happy for them! 

Split pic with Sister Bauer.
I am quickly learning that I don't really do that much as a missionary except invite people. The Lord has people prepared and ready to accept the Gospel. The sisters in Herne didn't really do anything exceptional to get this lady and her son baptized. They were spiritually prepared before hand to receive the gospel and the sisters were just there to support and give a little nudge. 

We have an investigator we are teaching. We've met with her only a couple times. But this last time she said that she prayed and received her answer. We were so happy! To be honest our lesson before hand didn't go so well so we were a little nervous. But she keeps inviting us back! I know that it has nothing to do with me. We are just vessels for the spirit.'s beautiful here.....
This is probably the most frightening thing I have every done in my life! I am stretched so much every day! But because of that I am growing more than I could have possibly imagined. I wouldn't trade the tiredness, frustration, embarrassment, nervousness, anxiety, loneliness for anything. I have seen miracles since I've been here. Not just in the people around me but in myself. Oh boy I'm crying like a baby right now.....oh tears.......Being a missionary is so hard but so worth it! Es lohnt sich! 

My study area I decorated this week. I couldn't find the picture of Elder Eyring all week so it looked kind of weird with just President Monson and Elder Uchtdorf. But he has been found! It still looks kind of creepy with just their faces there....I might move them to a different location......
Sister Kearl and I were searching through Mormon Messages the other day and we watched the one by Elder Worthlin "Come what may and love it." He says trust, do your best, and leave the rest up to Him. 
I try to remember that every day when we leave our apartment because really that's all I can do. 

Love you all! 
Thank you for the support and emails! 
It is always so good to hear from you :)

Sister Madsen

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