Elder Aaron Baxter
Germany Frankfurt Mission
Kirche Jesu Christi
Corneliusstrasse 18
60325 Frankfurt am Main

Monday, January 26, 2015

Biking In The Snow

The weather has been picking up lately in Paderborn, including a lot of rain and snow.  It has been an adventure riding bikes with the weather!  So far no crashes or disasters, and I hope it stays that way.

The week consisted of something to do every day, which was awesome!  We have been helping our recent convert, Brother Seeger, with FamilySearch a lot lately.  We have been meeting him at the church, and walking him through how to do things, and he has been loving it.  We also had some experience with new investigators.  We were able to make an appointment with an older couple that came to church last week and give them a copy of the Book of Mormon.  We didn´t get to teach much, because the man just kind of talked the whole time, and then took us on a bike ride so he could show us where the baptist church was in Paderborn.  That was an unexpected thing to be doing.  We also met a friend of Brother Seeger who is now an investigator.  Brother Seeger brought this man with him one day when we were going to meet for FamilySearch.  The friend saw a painting in the church, which caught his attention, and from there we were able to give him a tour of the building, and give him a copy of the Book of Mormon.  We met together with Brother Seeger and his friend the days following and went through the first lesson, and the friend came to church.  Brother Seeger is loving being involved in missionary work.

It has been a great first week together with my new companion, things are looking really positive.  I would say from my experience this week that blessings from Heavenly Father do happen!

Aaron biking in the snow.

Monday, January 19, 2015

A New Companion In Paderborn

My seventh transfer has arrived, and so has my third companion!

The week started with getting my companion packed up and ready to travel out of Paderborn.  He said goodbye to our recent convert, Brother Seeger, and then we were off to the city of Dortmund.  During that time I got to go on a split in Hagen with an Elder in my district and then a split in Dortmund with an Elder I was with in the MTC.  It was a fun time and got to explore these other areas a bit more.

Thursday evening I met Elder Crittenden and we traveled to Paderborn.  The next day we had a district meeting to meet the new district, and then we met with a part member family afterwards.  Saturday we continued to meet with a few members and had some interesting experiences with others we met while out and about.  We had an experience where a woman saw us as we were walking to the apartment of a member, and she was wondering what was up with us.  She ended up walking into our appointment, and while she didn't stay the entire time, she did stay long enough to feel the spirit.  Weird experience, but cool.

On Sunday we had a member bring some friends to church, and we are now planning to visit these people so we can talk with them and give them a copy of the Book of Mormon, which is super cool!  We also ate together with the branch and met with Brother Seeger.

I am excited to have a new companion in Paderborn.  This is my first time serving with an Elder who is younger on the mission than me, and I am the senior companion.  So far it has not been anything to worry about, and I wouldn't  have it any other way.

Aaron with his new companion

Monday, January 12, 2015

End of the Sixth Transfer

This week was the final week of the transfer, so as usual, it was an unusual week.

Early in the week was district meeting, which was good.  Because we all thought it would be our last time together, we got a group photo, and then went our separate ways.  I went on a split in Unna, and while there, taught a less active member who is returning to church, set up a bunch of tables in the Unna church for an activity, and spent some time at the doctor´s office for the Elder I was with (He had a checkup appointment).  Directly after this split, we had a power split (two splits in the same area) in Unna, where I was with the district leader, and my companion was with the Elder I was with earlier.  With that I got to go to institute, while the other companionship went out in the middle of nowhere for an appointment.

At 11 in the evening we got a phone call from the other companions saying that they had no way back to Unna, and needed a ride back.  So the district leader and I jumped in the Unna car and traveled an hour to save our companions.  We didn´t get to bed until around 1 in the morning that day.

To end the week, we had transfer calls.  I will be staying in Paderborn, and my companion has been called to serve as a district leader in another area (side note:  He will be in Feucht, which is where the past Mission President, President Schwarz, lives).  In church the next day, my companion bore his testimony during sacrament meeting, and barely anyone knew what was going on.  Our recent convert knew that he would be leaving, so he got emotional, but the rest of the branch didn´t know.  After the meeting they all started asking him about where he was going and all that.  We ended the day visiting with the Branch President and his family so my companion could say goodbye, and there the Branch President showed off pictures from his mission.  Missionary work looked the same back then as it does now, I thought to myself while looking through the album of pictures.

The new transfer should be exciting with getting a new companion.  Until next week!

Last time together

Monday, January 5, 2015

Bring on 2015!

The year I will entirely spend on my mission has finally come!

The final week of 2014 was an interesting one.  Early in the week Paderborn had a big Catholic Holiday celebration going on, where children everywhere were dressed up wearing crowns.  It was like a big party, complete with a rock band, and it pretty much killed our time trying to talk to people then.  After that we met with our recent convert, and helped out in a home teaching lesson, where there the family invited us back for New Year´s Eve, and then we visited another member who has had some difficult trials in life recently.

For New Year´s Eve we had a meal appointment with the family that invited us over.  During that meeting, I was asked to cut a cake, and before I new it I had a room full of Germans yelling at me as to how I should cut it, and me not understanding anything they were saying.  After 6 pm, my companion and I were back at the apartment, and at midnight I watched the fireworks, while my companion slept.

New Year´s Day we ended up visiting the same family the day before to get back my name tag that got lost at their place (I did find it) and had another meal appointment, and played the most stressful game of Bingo I have ever played.  We then visited another member after that.

At the end of the week there was a zone training meeting in Dortmund, and after that we were able to meet with our recent convert again, and learned he had been inviting people to church.  No one came, but it was awesome of him to share the Gospel with others!  He also conducted a lesson in church again, he is making progress in teaching.  Little progress, but progress.

And That was the end of 2014 and the start of 2015!

Now how do I cut a cake?

Party Time