Sunday, September 29, 2013

Yogyakarta Week 6

Salam dari Yogyakarta!

This past week was by far one of the busiest on my Mission so far. We have had so many appointments, and have really been working hard. I really like being busy, because it helps me know that I am doing the right thing, and serving God to the best of my ability. It really is a great feeling! We had some fun experiences, and got to know a lot of members as well. It was an ideal week, and I hope the rest will be similar. Here are some highlights of the week.

On Monday, this past P-day, we went to a Zoo named 'Gembira Loka'. My camera was dead, but luckily the other Missionaries took lots of pictures. It was a lot of fun! Since we went there on a Monday, it was basically empty. We saw a lot of really cool animals, and got to ride an elephant. One funny thing was when we were looking at the tigers; there was a huge spider on the fence of the cage. We did not even realize it until we were super close to it. It was not an exhibit, and I was terrified. We had a really fun time.

The Sisters and us Elders go to a city called Klaten every week, which is two hours from Jogja. We have to take two buses, and then walk pretty far. There are a few members there, and they always give us referrals that live there. The Stake Presidency wants to build a Branch there, and we are helping them do that. The father of a member family was preparing for baptism, and so I interviewed him when I went there. We also taught their friend, who can barely hear, but wants to be baptized. The work is progressing there, and I am glad that I am part of it! Without the faithful members there, we could not do anything.

My bike has been having problems lately, and so I have slowly been improving it. The rear tire always goes flat, and it can be a real pain sometimes! The last time it happened, we had an appointment, and we were very far from the nearest repair station. So I hired a Becak to take the bike and me to the shop. It was worth it, because he went pretty fast. The bike was fixed, and we went on our way. The tire lasted about two more days before it went flat again, even though I bought a new inner tube.

We visited a lot of members this past week as well, and they were all so nice to us! Sometimes we go to one member, eat a ton, and then the very next appointment is a member with tons of food as well! I am glad that I ride bikes here, because if not, I would probably get very fat. I seriously eat so much food now. My companion and I are always hungry!

At the Birthday party of Sister Siska. The Zone Leaders were also here.

The Zone Leaders came twice this week, one time for exchanges, and another to sleep over since they were leaving on a plane to Jakarta from Yogyakarta. I went on exchanges with Elder Hasibuan, who I knew from Solo when he was the District Leader there. We had a good time, and they gave some good advice and help. They said we were basically leading the Mission in this city with our work and the Sister's work.

At Church, we had another Baptism for Kawit, the elderly father of a member. He is over 80 years old, but he really has a desire to come to church and become closer to God and his family. He has a hard time understanding a few things, but he does everything the Sisters teach him. The Sisters were so patient teaching him, and I think that is why he has progressed. I love being in a District with hard-working Sisters!

Well, that is about all for this week. I am having a great time here, and really learning about the Gospel and myself. It is so clear to me now how the Gospel blesses families. I hope the people we teach will feel the same way. I miss you all, and I will email again next week! Sampai jumpa!

-Elder James

Taking the sacrament to a member who takes care of her sick mother. (lady on the far right)
She had some problem with strokes I think.

The food at Sister Siska's restaurant. It is so good!
And we get it for free every time we visit.

Visiting a member who lives far away, so we drove with the Barnards.

A scorpion we found at the church.

We got bunk beds, and my fan would not fit anywhere, so I attached it to the frame!
 There is no AC here, so it gets really hot. Without a fan on full speed the entire night,
I get sweaty and mosquitoes eat me alive.

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