Elder Andrew

Elder Andrew

Saturday, January 16, 2016

Eli Mail 1/9/16 (Leiden, Netherlands) Letter 65

Hello everyone! I hope everyone is having a great week! Us office Elders have been doing well. My companion Elder Evans only has three weeks, but you would not be able to tell. He's great and still rockin' and rollin’.

A number of things happened this week, but I want to highlight the best moments of the week. First off, we had a wonderful little miracle this past Tuesday at our bi-monthly "games night." Elder Evans organized a bi-monthly activity with games and treats and all the YSA kids from around north and south Holland come together to have listen to a little spiritual message and then play board games and similar activities. In the past few months, the attendance has wavered quite dramatically. One time we had around 15-20 youth from around the stake come, and then another we had three. But this time we had a nice average at about six to seven. We did the spiritual thought and then started playing as usual, but during the first initial 15 minutes the phone kept buzzing, indicating received text messages, but I just ignored it. But 10 minutes later an older Dutch woman showed up at the door to the room we were playing with a girl behind her, telling us she had gotten lost on the way trying to find the church. Evidently, one our student investigators read a mass text we sent out earlier that day and went out to find the church by herself! She had gotten horribly lost and had texted us for help, but I had simply ignored the buzzing! I felt so bad, but my companions and I warmly greeted her and we had a good evening of games together. She had wound up by another church, the apostolic church, and her over-sized tandem bike broke down on the way, but she was diligent and showed up! I was very impressed, and it was a cool blessing to see her desire to come to the church on a Tuesday evening just for a good atmosphere and games! It was a great evening.

This week we have done pretty well with the work. Sadly, most of our planned lessons haven't been working out and contact with our solid investigators has been slipping lately, but I am hopeful to keep things on track and make more time to call and visit people. Our legality Belgium trip yesterday became very memorable, perhaps not for the best of reasons either, but memorable none the less. Friday morning Elder Cook and I were trying to think of some way to "change up" the Brussels trip, make it a little more exciting. We attempted to think of some pranks, or anything for that matter, but nothing came to mind so we just carried out plans as normal. We all left at around 9:40 a.m. and arrived like normal around noon in Brussels. After finding our usual underground parking lot, we all piled out and walked around Brussels centrum for lunch, eating fries and waffles as we always do. After about an hour, we all met up again and headed back to the car. I walked over to the side door, and Elder Cook climbed in the front seat, and one of the new missionaries was just staring at his door. Elder Cook saw him and exclaimed, "What the heck?!" I was ruffling around in my bag in the back seat and shot my head to the front of the car at the sound of his surprise. As I climbed over the seat and looked at the front passenger side door I saw glass all over the seat and ground. We had been robbed! Turns out someone smashed in our side window and stole our GPS out of our glove compartment. It was weird, but they left everything else – our gas cards and spare change – just taking the GPS. We spent the rest of the afternoon filing damage reports and then spent a few hours waiting in line at the Brussels police department to report the accident. It was a crazy, weird Brussels trip. Perhaps Elder Cook and I should not wish for more crazy things to happen like that again. We didn't even get to do the legality work either, but it was a memorable trip. Elder Cook miraculously guided us home, from Brussels all the way to Leiden, Nederland, without a GPS. I was very impressed.

Anyway, I am loving things out here! The days are still pretty wintry and dark, but I am finding a lot of joy in what us missionaries do, inviting others unto Christ, and I hope you all continue daily to invite yourselves unto Christ. It will help you inherit what D&C 88:19 describes: "crowned with glory, even with the presence of God the Father."

Have a wonderful week.

Elder Eli Andrew

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