Saturday, May 4, 2013

Week 18 (4/15-4/23)

 HAPPY 21st BIRTHDAY SIERRA!! I just had to make sure to acknowledge that in my email this week :) And yes, I did get you a present. And yes. It is awesome. But anyways :) this week has been awesome. well, basically so far today has just been really awesome and therefore made my past week seem awesome so we will see if it actually is when I go over what happened this week. 
     Tuesday was pretty good. Ashot made us some lunch for once and gave us what he called 'the most expensive meal in Iran'. It was basically some meat/rice thing that had safron in it. And he gave us some delicious smoked, raw fish. Noms. Most excitingly was English class. We had 7 students. An all time high. It was awesome and we even had Anoush show up. Who really should be there ever week but she doesn't... typical. But after our class we had a great lesson with Olga, Armen's 'girlfriend'. We had the other Elders bring Armen to the building so he could teach with us. But she had read the entire plan of salvation pamplet we gave her and had understood it! She was asking great questions and really wanted to find out more. So we gave her a BOM and told her to just start reading. We never would have expected her to be so awesome. Then we visited our awesome Albert and his family. We didn't have much time so we just visited for a while and was introduced to a good family friend who was super friendly and could be a potential.
     Wednesday we worked out at 6 again at this guy Jon's apartment building. It is kind of weird going to a gym again. But hey at least i'm not getting fat! So i'm not complaining! We had an awesome lunch with Christine and the other Elders. She made some of her famous chicken and some new Egyptian food that was bombdiggity too delicious not to overindulge. She is going to teach us how to make all this stuff so i can do some cooking when I come home. maybe. But then we met with this guy george who is armenian, married and lives in SLC. Just got married two weeks ago to some armenian girl. And they were visiting his aunt who lives in Hollywood. he called us and told us he wanted us to meet up so we could give her a book of mormon and explain it to her. So we did and we gave her a church tour. She didn't quite understand/wasn't listening because she was baffled at us speaking. She also asked for us to sing for her so we did in Armenian (pg. 12 of the armenian hymnbook for those who remember that one). But she is awesome and said we can come visit her this week. We are hoping to go visit her tomorrow and be able to swing by little armenian during the genocide demonstrating that will be going on tomorrow in hollywood. to see her of course and not be affiliated with all that stuff...but speaking of which we bought the official t-shirts this week. Which are hilariously dramatic and say 'Our wounds are still open. 1915.' I say dramatic because even after almost 100 years they are still violently bitter against the Turks. Which is understandable but every year they march to the Turkish consolate in Hollywood and protest and stuff. But a few million of their people were killed so you gotta support your heritage I guess. But yes we bought the shirts. We had another massive dinner with our less active Helga and her daughter. Which was kind of frustrating. You know when someone just kind of breaks down and you know they are having a hard time/life in general and that they deserve something better but you honestly have no thing to say to them? yeah that happened. And to top it all off, we jsut don't know how to get Helga to come back to church. She just keeps making excuses. The same ones over and over. Main event was our lesson with Souren and his family. And once again their cousin and Souren's sister was there! Love teaching families. We taught about the book of mormon and the first lesson. The kids loved being able to use the Jenga blocks we brought to build the church and have it fall and being built into a bunch of little churches. But even though at the end of the lesson, the kids were arguing who could say the prayer and that they all wanted book of mormons, the dad Souren just isn't really in that big of a hurry to do anything about our teachings even though he wants to learn. 
     Thursday we had an awesome district meeting given by Elder Dicus. So glad he is my companion :) he's kind of a big deal around these parts of glendale. Not much else happened besides English was good again. Not quite as many came but the regular four or five. I was going over shopping terms and stuff with my more advanced group and one of our members made up a sentence of 'My shoes are sexy!' which made us all laugh. We had a brief discussion with Olga after class and she has read all the way up to 1 NE 5 which she had totally highlighted and wrote stuff in the margins and stuff. Golden? Maybe? We will see. 
     Friday was an awesome day planned but it went a little south. Weekly planning was unusually long that day. Probably all the distractions we had with other Elders coming in and drawing each other on the white boards. We had our two big lessons cancel on us so that left our afternoon kind of not so exciting anymore. But it worked out because we got invited to come visit Mike and Bridget at their house. Almost found a new favorite soup. It was similar to broccoli cheese but it had asparagus and not so thick as the broccoli cheese from einsteins. still the best around. but we don't have one here... dang. we had the ZL's drop us off to meet the other elders over at this guys house who comes to ESL every now and again and has been wanting us to come visit for a while. It is another Souren and he is super funny and talkative and he was telling us about all the ladies he hangs out with at the adult day care. quite funny. 
     Saturday wasn't too eventful either. Our church tours haven't been too successful lately so we are thinking of doing a free car wash to get people to come and while we was their cars to show them the church building. Good idea to me! We stopped by this park that I hadn't been to before and just sat down with a group of armenians playing chess. everything was quiet so we didn't talk much just a few hellos and mostly just watched them play. They are really fun to watch because of how good they are. it takes a while for them to build up but then they go on a 5-7 move streak that they knew would happen. But eventually we got to talk to a few of them and just have some nice conversations. Man I love Armenians. We stopped by Albert and them to make sure they would come to church on sunday. which they all said they would attend. However an hour or so later we got a text from one of the daughters saying they wouldn't be able to attend. But we wanted to hear that from the Dad so we had one of our members call him and ask. He said he'd for sure be there. We attended a ward activity that was offering free food to us missionaries. The young women were having an auction/game night to raise money for some other activity. So we stayed there for a bit and were actually introduced to some armenian people who came with members and even some non members. Gotta love it! We met up with Edmond and interrupted a family get together but they welcomed us in like we were family and edmond sat us down and just started talking to us like his family wasn't even there. We didn't quite get to teach them about the things we wanted because he was caught up asking us questions about philosophy and some books that he has and yaddayaddayadda. We invited them to our picnic though this upcoming Saturday so hopefully they will come. 
     Sunday was seriously the craziest thus far. we were planning on about 7 investigators coming to church. Only 5 came. Which was super awesome. But having that many to take care of is ROUGH! It felt like I was babysitting 5, 4-6 year olds. Making sure they knew where to go. Making them feel comfortable. Making sure people talk to them. Helping them participate. But the worst part was trying to make sure our members were on their best behavior. Not saying that our group is OAC but they were especially rambunctious because there were more people there. Not to mention one investigator that the other elders brought and weren't watching totally interuppted our new sunday school teacher lesson with him saying things about what he does in his church and such. Not willing to stop talking when asked. But even in relief society which we translate for, we had to find someone to translate what we were translating/explaining into Farsi for Romina (Albert's wife). SO STRESSFUL! Then things calmed down a bit in sacrament even though one of our investigators had to leave early. But It was the most awesome busy sunday by far. Love it. We went and met with Nersees and another lesson with Souren. Souren's lesson we reviewed what we taught last time to ensure understanding and to teach the wife who was absent last time. We aren't very good at keeping our lessons short there. We feel the need to over explain things with the little kids even though it should be shorter with them. 
     Then yesterday which is usually our P-day but because we went to the temple this morning at 500, our p-day is today and we got to work yesterday. Which was cool because we got to go up to GCC and set up with booth. Definitely getting....Tanner.... from all the sun i'm getting the past few weeks. After the booth and some planning with the other Elders for Family home evening last night, we stopped by all the people we didn't see at church as well as the people we wanted to be sure to invite to come to our picnic on saturday which should be super fun. We had a lesson with Hambarsoom as well. We decided to leave it up to him to continue to meet with us. We have taught him the lessons and invited him over and over to pray to know but he just hasn't done it yet. I feel bad becasue I blame myself for not teaching something well but he just isn't progressing and needs to find that desire to change. I was really sad about that. he was my first investigator and I thought at the time he would be baptized. I have faith he will find an answer though and will continue to come to church. But finallly we had FHE last night and it was awesome. WE played jeopardy and everyone loved it. 

Well I still have a ton to do today so that is it for now but I will write you next week. Love you all. Happy birthday again Sierra. Hope it is an awesome one. 

Elder DeBry

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