Monday, September 5, 2016


Hey everyone! 

Another week in the books, these weeks just keep flying by! Somehow we are already starting the third week of the transfer! Feels like yesterday we started this new transfer. Each transfer I take time to evaluate where I am at and set goals to move forward. This transfer, my theme is "Foundation" because as I was studying the Book of Mormon recently in Helaman 5, verse 12 stuck out to me more than it ever has before. That verse has always been a favorite of mine but this time it was exactly what I needed. So I am trying to strengthen my foundation built on Christ and I have started reading and studying "Jesus the Christ" which is just absolutely incredible. I am only a couple chapters in and my testimony and knowledge of the Savior has already grown! Just thought I would share that will all of you.  Happy Birthday to my sister and sister-in-law!!  Hope you both had a great birthday!!

Last Tuesday we had the Elders from Stavropol come up here! Due to some planning mistakes, they ended up having to take the trip back down to Stavropol the morning after getting here but it was great to see them and spend some time with them. The Stavropol Branch is actually closing in a couple weeks which is hard for them but they are staying positive! 

Thursday we had an awesome District Meeting and we got to have Sister Miner with us! Our District Leader had us go around and share a miracle from the week and it was extremely powerful to hear everyone's various experiences throughout the week. Many shared about struggling to feel like we are doing anything here but then they all had experiences that confirmed to them that they are indeed still performing the Lord's work. Sister Miner also had an experience like that and we just know that we are all going through these changes together and sometimes it is hard to understand why or what to do but in the end, the work is moving forward and we are all still on the Lord's Errand! We then discussed reaching out to Less Actives and I was asked to share about Fergie back from the days in Volzhiky. Recently found out that she is still actively attending church and doing way well! It was fun to reflect on that experience and share it. 

Friday I was on splits with the District Leader from the Zapadny (West) District- Elder Burgoyne. He just got here this transfer from Volzhky and before Volzhky, he served in Sochi so it was fun to talk about both of those branches that we have both served in. We went to Sister Ludmila who was beyond excited to meet him and then she asked us to help her with some cleaning so of course we did. We mopped and vaccuumed and she danced haha. We then went to the Animal Shelter where we did some cleaning for them. On our way out, one of the workers told us that she loves us which really shocked me. People don't generally say that to people unless they are really close and I have never heard someone tell me they love me here besides members- still hard to get Elder T to tell me he loves me haha. They really appreciate our service there! Friday night we had Sports/Game Night and we had a lot more people come- both members and non-members. We had some great games and ping pong going and it seemed like everyone had a great time! 

Saturday morning we went up to the Severny (North) area and met the volunteers and members from the branch up there at an Orphanage that they have been helping at. We moved a ton of furniture there for a few hours and we were pretty exhausted after but it was really rewarding. The people there were very nice and thankful. One of the little boys there named Dima was talking to me and told me that I am clearly a basketball player while he was running around playing soccer. Felt like I was back in India for a minute, although here I can actually talk to the kids in their language! Saturday night we had a district wide Young Single Adults activity here in the Center Branch that also went well. It was their kick off to Institute and we just played games and had a good time. 

Last week, I wrote about how we served Sister Inkles. Well, we were able to gain her trust and become friends with her through that service and this week she invited us over to meet her parents who were in town and are non- members. They were super friendly and we had a great visit with them. Her mom made us homemade Russian blini with homemade raspberry jam so I was in heaven! Then Saturday night she called us and needed us to hurry over and help carry a new fridge up to their apartment and she was very thankful for that- she calls all the volunteers "angels." Sunday we were released as Primary Teachers and called to be Youth SundaySchool teachers and right after we got sustained, I heard someone whisper, "Elder Tucker" and I turned around to see Sister Inkles raising both her hands to sustain us with a big smile on her face. She will be are co-teacher in that class. She is always sharing the gospel with everyone so as we gain her trust, we will be able to work with her to teach the gospel to those she finds! She has become a good friend of ours!

Sunday was a great Fast Sunday! We fasted as a mission for some miracles to take place so that we may continue to teach and baptize as we were just a couple months ago. With some faith and diligence, we will see miracles! 
Some powerful testimonies were shared as always, but the strongest hands down came from Sister Taylor. Elder and Sister Taylor work in the Mission Office and although they know the few neccessary words in Russian, they do not get the practice like we do. When she stood up, Elder Shumway went up to translate but she shocked us all when she bore her simple, powerful testimony in Russian- with perfect grammar. It brought me to tears and it was just incredible to hear. 
After Church we got to take the Sacrament to Sister Toma who just waits for us all Sunday and gets so happy when we come. She is incredible! 
Sunday Night we met with the Sisters and Skyped the Zone Leaders in Crimea to start planning our upcoming Zone Conference that will take place next week on the 14th. We have lots to do to get that ready and we hope it will be a good one!  Thanks for all the love, support and prayers!!

Love you all! Till next week! 

P.S. I am fully aware of what is going on this weekend.  I will be wearing all my red ties. Go UTES!

-Elder Tucker//Старейшина Таккер
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Pictures- from district meeting (role playing-making phone calls).

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