First, we had two district meetings this week and we will continue to do so for now. We do not have a District Leader so Elder Shumway and I act as the District Leaders as well.officially ended our two week moratorium and I shared this quote, "A ship is safe in the harbor, but that is not what ships are for." We were in the harbor for a couple weeks and now we are out at sea adjusting to all the winds coming our way! We also had a great discussion about humility led by Elder Foote who is one of the most humble Elders I know. We have started going over the program "Teaching in the Savior's Way" to improve our teaching and to help members improve theirs and we will continue that program for a couple weeks.
After that meeting, we headed out to Taganrog again, for a baptismal interview! I got to interview someone named Zahar (Zachary in Russian) for baptism! He has been an investigator for multiple months but has always had doubts and never felt that this was the truth. However, he just had the opportunity to go to St. Petersrburg for Youth Conference and said there he felt the Spirit for the first time and since then he has received answers to every question and every doubt has been washed away. I did not do much in the interview, he knew the questions by memory and so he asked the questions and answered them.
Church went really well yesterday. There is always such power in testimony meetings here! Elder Shumway and I got to teach primary again and the kids were being pretty wild until Sister Taylor walked in. They love her and respect her more than they do us even when she does not speak Russian!
After Church, all of us volunteers met with the Branch President and received callings that will become official next week. Due to some unexpected meetings and delays, I ended up fasting for more than 24 hours but it felt good! I love the opportunity to fast!
Last night we had the humbling opportunity to take the Sacrament to Sister Toma. She cannot really walk which prevents her from coming to church. We got there a lot later than usual and she was so thankful that we came, she had been waiting! After we gave her the Sacrament, she went on to explain just how badly she wants to attend church but physically cannot. She also expressed her desires to pay tithing and wants us to find out if she ever forgot to pay so that she can make up for it- keep in mind that her only income is her pension. I just thought about how so many of us have so much more material items in this life yet sometimes we see Church attendance or paying tithing as some type of burden. She lives in some of the worst conditions I have seen and cannot go to Church, but she whole heartedly wants to follow all of God's commandments. It was hard for me to hold back tears as we met with her, she taught me a valuable lesson about desires and that worldly materials are truly not the key to happiness. Until next week, thanks for all the updates, prayers, and support.