Greetings, we received transfer calls night and I am staying in Krasnodar! Unfortunately, I will not be with Elder Tolokonnikov anymore. But he will still be in Krasnodar, so we will see each other almost daily. All I know about my new companion is his name is Elder Garretson, he is 6'5" so we will be the tallest companionship in the mission, and he is our only red headed missionary. Every time I have told the members my new companion has red hair, they respond by saying, "I thought that was not allowed on a mission?" (too funny) He will get here later this week from Rostov. Elder Barnes, my trainer, will also be coming to Krasnodar to serve with Elder T as Zone Leader so I am excited to reunite with him!
It was a good week. Elder T led a great District Meeting about happiness and he did it all in English! Usually he leads meetings in Russian and we translate for the Johnstun's but he wrote it all down in English and everyone was just smiling hearing him speak in English, maybe that was his trick to get us all happy! It worked! He said, "Jesus won death, so our souls should be happy." Loved that line!
I was on splits all weekend as Elder T and our other Zone Leader Elder Lord went up to Rostov for Leadership Conference. We had a very humbling service opportunity, helping a member who's apartment had a fire. This apartment was burnt to a crisp. Every wall, ceiling, piece of furniture was black. We had some members come as well as the Johnstuns and we got a lot done for them! Still lots more to do and the Krasnodar Family will continue to help, until it is all taken care of! Our faces looked like we had just stepped out of the coal mines. We got some interesting stares on the train ride home.
I had a very powerful lesson with Edward this week. He told us how, as he grew up he would read the Bible to feel better and he gets those same feelings from the Book of Mormon. We asked him to describe that feeling and he said it feels like "correctness." After I prayed to close he said, "Tucker, as you prayed I felt so calm." He is starting to feel the Spirit!
Fastwas great, fasting is great. We have 4 missionaries getting transferred and they were asked to testify. They all did such a great job, it is always hard for the members to see missionaries go, they are so loving towards us. Yesterday was especially hard for them because Elder Lord is being transferred. Elder Lord started his mission here and is leaving to a new area. The branch loves him, and he will be missed big time!
All the brothers sang to the sisters, at church because it is Women's Day! Happy Women's Day to all the gals in my life, especially Megan, Lexi, and the most important woman in my life, MY MOM! I love you three so much! I would not be where I am today without you three!
We had Break the Fast at the Johnstuns and I really loved Elder Johnstun's spiritual thought. He talked about how essentially we teach and learn the same basics every single week, every single general conference, and even every single day for us missionaries. But, the Holy Ghost is the real teacher and if we prepare for meetings, lessons, etc. we will learn something new every time. Without preparation, however, the same messages will get old. I have seen that the Gospel is the same always but we always change and can receive new revelation. I can literally read the same talk or same chapter in the Book of Mormon multiple times and get something new out of it every time, based on what I need at that time. The Spirit is the real teacher!
I cannot believe it is already another transfer! I am so happy to be staying in Krasnodar!!
Love you all!!!