Sunday, April 19, 2009

A Celebration of a Milestone

The two Sister missionaries (Sister Rieske and Sister Fowkes) and the two Elder missionaries (Elder Wecker and Elder Questerreit) here in Dortmund did not have an invite to dinner today. They all decided to celebrate our "hump week". They wanted to surprise us and cook a dinner for us in our apartment after church. They told me about the surprise, but I was to keep it from Sister Diederich. This is a task that is easier to think about, than to do. How were we to keep ourselves from our apartment for a couple of hours, especially right after church and what reason would I give Anina for not taking her home to freshen up and change cloth before going on a little drive in the country? It was a hard sell, but we did it. By the time we arrived home her suspicions were confirmed as the missionaries jumped from the door and said "Surprise !!!"..
The dinner worked out very nice. The food was excellent. They prepared "Schnitzel" and potatoes and a good desert.. There was more than enough for everyone. The Elders did most of the cooking and the sisters helped with some of the clean up work.
We had a wonderful time together and than I took the missionaries closer to town, so thy could do some contact work - talking to people on the street. I am always amazed of how faithful these young missionaries are in trying to meet people who may be interested in the message of the gospel. They just keep on going even as they are rejected all day long, day after day.
During our visit this afternoon they told us about some of the people they thought they had been making progress with, and now they have told them not to come back. Any flicker of interest gives them hope, so it is devastating when they receive the word, not to come back.

This past week we had the "every six week zone conference" in Dortmund. Both the Bielefeld Zone and the Dortmund Zone met together. All of our spirits were lifted as we committed ourselves to go and give it all we have to testify and teach and invite others to come unto Christ. I can certainly see the wisdom in having these conferences so often, for we need the extra assurance that this is the Lords work.

There has been some sad news from home this week. It was a great surprise for us to hear that our good friend Mel Knight passed away. Since our first meeting, with than Bishop Knight, as we moved into the Cottonwood Third Ward and later of having had the privilege to be one of his councilors and than succeeding him as Bishop, we stayed in contact. He has helped me out in many ways over the many years and I learned many valuable lessons from him. Oh. how I wished I would have taken the opportunity to let him know how I appreciated and loved that great man.
As we are so many miles from home and loved once, we feel helpless to be of comfort. There have been several that passed to the other side of the Veil since our stay here in Germany. Each loss seems to be harder to cope with. May the Lord bless all of you good people at home.
We are doing well and feel that we are being blessed with an extra measure of the Lord's blessings.
The Gospel of Christ and his atonement means a lot to us. We pray especially for our immediate family that they will stay true to the faith.

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