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

Monday, September 28, 2015

I Saw The Rains Down In Africa

Well, the week had quite the African theme to it, making for an adventure in and of itself.

For P-Day, Elder Sollis and I looked around a little in Siegen, but we were not able to come up with much to do.  The highlight of P-Day really was writing emails.  After P-Day, we had an appointment with an African member family, and talked about what the Gospel of Jesus Christ meant to them.  The next day was Frodo and Bilbo´s Birthday, and the day was spent driving in the rain to the city of Düsseldorf to get to Zone Conference.  It lasted the whole day, and was centered around the third missionary lesson: The Gospel of Jesus Christ.  The most peculiar part of zone conference, however, was the Food Nanny, a lady from a BYU show, showing up and giving a presentation about cooking.  You might as well have placed us in a studio and added cameras to her presentation, and it would have been an episode of her show.

Wednesday after lunch, my companion and I struggled for hours trying to get a brownie recipe right.  We had an appointment with multiple members, one of which was having a birthday, and we were volunteered by someone to make brownies.  Eventually though, we ran out of time and ingredients, and had to result to buying some cake in a store.  We then went to the African shop we go to every now and then, and managed to sit down with two guys and the woman who runs the shop, and talk about the Restoration of the Gospel.  It was cool because the lady who runs the shop bore testimony about the Church, and she isn´t a member!  After that appointment, we went to the multiple member appointment, and a member gave a presentation about joy and the Gospel.

Thursday we drove out to meet our American investigators.  Originally we had a plan to talk about one of the commandments, but we ended up talking about the Gospel of Christ, and inviting them to baptism.  They are really close to agreeing to be baptized!  We drove back to Siegen afterwards and visited the African shop again, and talked to multiple people there, and then asked the lady who owns the shop if she wanted to be baptized, and she said yes!  The next day we tried to meet with some members, met with an African investigator and his friend, and tried to fit in Weekly Planning all at the same time.

Saturday we tried to meet with another African investigator, but due to miscommunication, we ended up in the wrong town.  We also visited the African shop and taught a little bit more, and tried to meet with a member family, but when we got there, they had visitors and no real time to meet with us.  Finally, on Sunday it was Stake Conference in Dortmund.  There I was able to see multiple members I knew when I was in Paderborn, and see one of them receive the Melchizedek Priesthood.  Sadly, the man I baptized was not able to attend, but I heard he was doing well.  After that we met with a member and helped him set up a Skype account.  And that´s the week!

The Siegen church meeting house. 

Monday, September 21, 2015

Transfer Insanity

So out in the Germany Frankfurt mission, transfer day came and went again, only this time I was in the eye of the storm. The week started with P-Day, as usual, and the time was spent at a member's house for lunch, and scrambling to get my companion packed. Early the next day, we drove up to Dortmund for district meeting, and everyone said goodbye to Elder Pfleumer there, and then we drove down all the way to Frankfurt. From there, Elder Pfleumer stayed in the mission office to start learning the ropes of being a tech elder, and I went off with another Elder working in Frankfurt, and together we tried to deliver a copy of the Book of Mormon to a Russian, and we had dinner at a Pizza Place with some young adult members.

The next day was the day the new missionaries flew in from the states. What did that mean for me? It meant I ran around with Elder Pfleumer and the tech elders all day. We started off driving to the airport to meet the new missionaries and pick up their luggage. We then ran back and forth throughout the day between the mission home and the mission office. We also picked up the trainers for the new missionaries at the central train station, and transported everyone to a hotel at the end of the day.

Thursday was transfer day, and there I got to see past companions again, and meet my new companion, Elder Sollis. We drove back to Siegen despite rainy weather, slow traffic, and a car show in Frankfurt, making everything hectic. That evening we stopped by a member family to introduce my new companion. The next day we dealt with city registration and visa stuff for Elder Sollis, and we drove out to have an appointment with our American investigators. We ended the day planning for the next week. Saturday we saw some more members and visited the African Shop again, and found a new investigator. Sunday was a busy day because of ward council, having back to back dinner appointments, and learning about how to do secretary duties I have never done before. All in all, a pretty jam packed week.

Aaron and Elder Sollis

Monday, September 14, 2015

Unexpected Change

It was the final week of my 12th transfer serving in the Germany Frankfurt Mission, and this is what happened:

So on Monday for P-day, my companion and I tried on Lederhosen for fun.  Other highlights included as you may have noticed last week, checking out the new Star Wars VII toys, and attempting to meet with some members, and my companion tearing apart and rebuilding a hair cutting razor so it would work again.  Tuesday we drove in the rain to Dortmund for district meeting, and afterwards spent some time as a district hitting the streets and sharing the Gospel.  During that time, my companion and I found a power box with the Frankfurt Temple drawn on it, so of course I had to get a picture.  In the evening we played badminton with a member and refugees, and got a bunch of food from another member.  That was a surprise.

Wednesday we visited the member in the hospital again, the African shop we visit every now and then, and made cookies for the member that gave us a bunch of food the day before.  In return, the member gave us even more food.  Thursday we drove out to visit our American investigators, and talked about the Priesthood, and had lunch with them at a Chinese buffet.  We also visited a member, and helped him with some odds and ends, and listened to him talk for an extremely long time.

Friday we were hit with an unexpected phone call.  My companion got called to serve as a Tech Elder for the next transfer, something nobody was expecting.  We were surprised, but we still had work to do, and had a really good appointment with the member in the hospital about the Plan of Salvation.  The roommate for the member in the hospital even asked us who we were, and a few nurses, so it was fun to share the Gospel a little that way as well.  We also worked on making our own Plan of Salvation, something the mission is doing.  Saturday was the transfer call, where we found out how the next transfer will go down.  We also had time to visit an investigator, run some errands for the member in the hospital, and break the news that Elder Pfleumer was leaving to a few members.  In the evening we got a call from the current Tech Elders asking us to come to Frankfurt earlier than normal so Elder Pfleumer could learn the ropes of being a Tech Elder.

Sunday was a busy day, because we had the lady who runs the African shop come to church (we had to carefully plan as to how we could get her there) and we had a bunch of visitors from Utah come for Sacrament Meeting.  Because of that, I ended up translating the meeting for the ones who couldn´t speak or understand German.  I know the Lord helped me out there!  Elder Pfleumer gave his final talk in Siegen, and then we visited multiple members throughout the rest of the day so my companion could say goodbye.  It´s sad we only had six weeks together, but what can you do?  We had a great time together, and I hope what lays ahead brings a lot of miracles!

Wearing Lederhosen

Temple Power

Monday, September 7, 2015

The Force Is Awakening

It was the second to last week for my first transfer in Siegen, and this is how it all went down:

Monday was P-Day as usual, what wasn´t usual about the day though was we had a lunch appointment with some older members in our branch, and helped them configure their tablet with Apps from the Church.  Tuesday we traveled to Dortmund for district meeting, which was about finding people, and after that we visited the member who was in the hospital to see how he was doing.

Wednesday was interesting, because we had multiple appointments teaching about the Restoration of the Gospel.  The first appointment was with an older German man, who has met with missionaries before.  It turned out to be a rough appointment, because he was completely rejecting us, but we didn´t dare let him have the last word.  Immediately after that, we visited a shop run by the African lady who knows us, and she had us sit down and preach to a guy who was there.  So we taught about the Restoration again, and it went way better than before, and I could feel the truthfulness of what my companion and I were saying (plus it was in English, which makes things even easier.)  In the evening, we saw a news report about a news team that followed a Mormon family in Germany, and explained some stuff about the Church.  It was ok, could have been better, could have been worse.  Thursday we visited the member in the hospital again to help him out with some odds and ends, and visited the African shop again, and sat down and taught the Restoration to three guys, who were all willing to listen to us.  It was great!

Friday was the usual planning for the next week, which was followed by us finding a member who fell out of contact with everyone a while ago.  He´s moved to a different city out of our area, so he´s gone now, but somehow we caught him as he was visiting a friend in our area.  We also had dinner with the senior missionary couple who runs the branch.  Saturday morning we helped our American investigators move a fridge, and taught a little about the Gospel of Jesus Christ, and we also visited a member in a developmental center and talked about Christ.  Sunday was fast and testimony meeting in Church, and we closed the week by visiting the member in the hospital.

Now it´s off to the final week of the transfer!

May The Force Be With You