Monday, April 27, 2015

Just a Quick One Today (Sorry)

Hey everyone!  I have about 15 minutes left to write you all today because I used up all of my time getting scholarships all lined up and written and taken care of today!   AH!  It has been super ..... not fun!

But this week was great.   Seriously so much awesome stuff happened.  We met 2 American MORMONS in the Chisinau visa office and they invited us to their house for dinner and AHHH it was the coolest experience ever!   we knew they were Mormon as soon as they walked in the door!

We also got to visit the most incredible members I have met in MY WHOLE LIFE and yes, they are here in Moldova.  I have never felt the spirit so strongly in anyone's home ever until we went here.  The ceiling is just rafters covered in mud and the walls and floor are bare.  This woman is only a few years older than me but is so incredibly Christlike.  Wow, I cannot even put into words how great of an experience that was.  

I have intestinal worms (round 2).  Don't worry, I'm taking 11 antibiotics a day to kill them.  So yep super fun!!!!

I love Sora Barrera and I am so lucky to serve with my one of best friends in this amazing city.  We are so exhausted every night from our busy days that we just come home, plan and fall straight to bed!   Which is bad because I haven't written in my journal for about 5 days now!!!!

I LOVE MY MISSION!   I am so glad for the choice I made to serve!


Loving the work, Loving the people and Loving the Lord,
:) Sora Lee

Beautiful building

   The ceiling of this humble home

Me, running in the Chisinau marathon, HA!

                                               I LOVE MY MISSION!!!!!!! (giant flags for days)

Monday, April 20, 2015

Flyin' Solo, Plane Contacting?

Wow haha Chisinau is the coolest city ever and I have the opportunity to serve with Sora Barrera, the coolest missionary ever.  Wow, it is crazy to look back and think that I have served all the way in the west and now I'm as far east as I can be in my mission!  I really have been all over!!!!

This week was just crazy haha we had a lot of weird, random moments together already haha.  Just things I cannot put into words over an email haha.  But man, everything here is just an adventure and everything puts a smile on my face haha!  I AM SO HAPPY HERE!  :)

Cool fact: I got to fly to Chisinau ALONE hahaha it was awesome!  But really weird because I have had someone directly by my side for almost a year and a half now ahah.  So I flew alone and it was soooo weird and it kinda freaked me out because I felt like I was flying home?  Hahah soooo wierd!!!!   I talked to just the nicest people and made a couple of solid friends.  I even met two men from Los Angeles!  They are on a backpacking tour of Europe and thought they should start in Republic of Moldova out of all places!  Haha they were like, "So why are you here?"  And I was like, "Oh I'm a Mormon missionary!"  Ahaha and they were just so nice and they were like, "How do you learn these languages?!  All of you young kids"  And I was like, "Lots of studying but also His help" haha and they laughed.  But you know, it's true!!!!

So I get off the plane and hug all of the sister missionaries and senior couples there, it was like my own little welcome party.  Ah it was so cute!!!!!!!  As we are leaving the airport they were like, "See you at the baptism on Friday"  and I was like, "WHAT".  So Sora Barrera's and Sora Koth's investigator got baptized and I kind of just walked into an awesome situation.  I'm excited to teach her the recent convert lessons.  Ecaterina is the SWEETEST woman ever.  She is a painter and has 10 puppies!!!!!!!!  So she's kind of my favorite person ever.    

Wow I just love it here.  
I JUST LOVE MY MISSION!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
This church is true.  The gospel makes you happy.  TRULY happy. 

Loving the work, Loving the people and Loving the Lord,
:)Sora Lee

Getting picked up at the airport!!!!

Congratulations Ecaterina!!!!!!


This meal is about 9 USA dollars

Call Me Miss MOLDOVA!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


Chisinau? ChisiYES!

Also my companion will be SORA BARRERA AHHHHHH.  I am so excited.  I cannot even wait.  STL with one of my best buddies. I am so happy!!!!!!!!!!!

Well this week was AWESOME.  We got to celebrate Easter yesterday!  (Easter is a week behind America here)  We got permission to go to the mass at midnight and it was sooo cool.  I understood soo much more than I did last year.  It is insane.  I really loved what the Orthodox priest encouraged us all to do, "To stand as a light of truth to others".  He also encouraged us to all "forgive and forget"  the mistakes of others and to be more humble in our lives and learn to accept our own weaknesses and faults.  We all got a candle and we all raised them up in the air and yelled (reverently), "Christ has risen.  Yes!  He HAS risen!"  And I was just like, wow, how cool is this?  We have a LIVING and LOVING Savior.  He LIVES.  He loves us.  He knows us.  I am so grateful I could focus more on him this Easter. 

 This point actually hit me super hard on Sunday morning.  I was exhausted, we got home at 3am after mass and I was so tired and stressed and my mind wasn't where it should have been on that Easter morning.  I was trying to finish 20 goody bags we made for our branch activity after church and I was so freaking frustrated because we had planned to put in a little picture of Christ inside of the bag along with several little Easter egg candies in front of it.  Well, the eggs kept moving behind the picture, making it all crooked and ugly and I was just so over it.  I set the bag down on the table and looked at it.  And then I noticed something...Christ was first.  It wasn't the eggs or the chocolate bunny.  It was Christ.  As Easter rolls around, Christ should be our first thought.  Everything else really comes secondary to His glory.  

The Easter slujba and activity were both so lovely.  Sora Wright gave a great talk on the resurrection of Christ and we sang the best hymns.  It was awesome.  The activity after was so fun and we even had some English students come!!!  We also have 2 new investigator friends this week!  Awesome!

This week we had exchanges with the lovely sisters from Constanta.  They are so awesome.  I got to go with Sora Sayre from my MTC group and we had a great day!!!  Like just everything went our way and it was incredible.  We met this super nice cotton candy maker lady on the boardwalk here and she loved us so much we got free cotton candy!!!!  She was SO CUTE.   We got to meet with Denisa this week after she kind of dropped off the face of the earth for a little bit.  We taught her about the Plan of Salvation and she actually LISTENED.  Which was so odd because usually she talks all over us.  But I could see the spirit come over her countenance and it was so incredible.  We also came back the next day and helped to clean her house!  It was so great.  

The sun is out here in Galati and it is so warm and beautiful, happy and bright!!! It is so great.  I love the sun.  I am just so SO grateful for this gospel and the PURE HAPPINESS it brings not only into my life, but everyone's life when they hear it.  

Loving the work, Loving the people and Loving the Lord,
:) Sora Lee

We go hard.  

Go elders go!


beautiful Galati

Nicest lady EVER!

COTTON CANDY with cute Sora Sayre on exchanges!!!!!

Goodbye Magda!!!!  Te iubesc!!!!

Goodbye to our cute Advanced English students!!!!

Oddest picture ever with Trian, my English crusher

Old Spice Man speaking ROMANIAN!!!!

This is what a progressing investigator looks like!!!!

Cleaning up project for Denisa!

Our "payment" for cleaning her house

Addi sneaking our juice!

Eating yummy meat!  Thanks Denisa!

                                                          Hip Hopping towards Easter!!!!!

                                                          Count the strays in this picture!

Rollerskating lane!

The district at Easter Mass!

Hristos a inviat!!!

What are white weird!

Christ always comes first, thank you goody bags for that important lesson

East up Ramura Galati!

The whole gang!

Liviu loves "hanging out" with me!

Prettiest eggs!

Love this picture!

Yay!  Easter!

The food....

Monday, April 6, 2015

My Crazy Little Lesson in a Food Court

We had SO MANY opportunities to talk to people this week, very prepared and open people too. I had this prompting while we were out at lunch to talk to the woman dumping the trays into the trashcan. I followed the prompting, not knowing what to say and just hoped for the best. She actually contacted me! I Before I could say anything, she just told me that she noticed that we carried ourselves with a light and that she was "in amazement" in our presence. Wow.  I was so shocked. I just thanked her and we talked a little about her and her family and her job. Her mind was blown that I could speak Romanian haha. It was awesome. I told her about the Easter film and asked her if she wanted to see it, she said "YES!" So I ran back to the table and Sora Wright followed me and we pulled out the little video screen and showed her right there in the middle of a busy food court this message about Christ. It was as if time stood still. "I have goose bumps" she told us as the movie came to an end. We bore testimony of the savior and invited her to learn more about the message. She said yes and I got her number!!!!!!!! MIRACLE!!!!!!!!!!!! 

Then, while in Bucharest for leadership conference and medical appointments we met  2 incredible open and prepared taxi drivers. One I totally believe will be a stake president one day and the other will be the coolest young men's leader ever. AH SO AWESOME! One totally wanted a Book of Mormon and as he was driving us, we read him some scriptures! It was SO COOL! He was like, "This book talks about Christ, so hpow can it be a bad book?" SOOOOO AWESOME. For the other driver, I felt prompted to tell him our true missionary purpose....which is weird because I don't usually say "To invite others to come unto Christ through faith, repentance..." right off the get go but I went with it! He was like, "Wow" and pulled into a parking spot, shut off the engine, turned around and let us talk to him! We got both their numbers and will pass them on to the elders in Bucharest. 

We got harassed by some guy on the train who was hating on us for being Mormons.  Sora Wright was being so polite and trying to share the gospel with him but he just was dogging her.  I had no impression to say anything, in fact, I couldn't, no Romanian came to my mind.  After about 15 minutes, I had had enough.  I turned to him and said, "Silence sir.  We are not here to argue or to force you to change your faith.  We are only here to invite people to hear about our message.  We have respect for your beliefs and we ask you to do the same for ours".  I also said other things I don't remember.  I spiritually shut him down.  It was like a Joseph Smith in Liberty Jail moment. Wow, in that moment, I knew that the Lord was speaking through me.  I was not speaking my own words.  This man was silenced.  And Sora just looked at me totally amazed.  

About 10 minutes later, after sitting in silence, a woman came into the cabin and we chatted with her, like nothing happened and this once angry man said, "Oh these two ladies are volunteers from America with their incredible is that?"  Hmmmm, he might have been trying to smite us but hey, a compliment is still a compliment.  

While at leadership conference, President Ivory selected me and Sora Barrera (she's in my MTC group) to be the mission's representatives at the Uruguayan Embassy (next door neighbors to our mission office).  We chatted with them and made acquaintance.  I realized that I forgotten like 95% of my Spanish hahaaha.  Darn.  I threw them a smile and an "Adios" as I walked out!

I am so grateful for my awesome district.  We are obedient and still have so much fun together!   

General Conference was so great.  So inspired.  I am grateful for our living prophet, Thomas S. Monson.  He is a man called of God.

Loving the Work, Loving the People and Loving the Lord,
:) Sora Lee


Photos 1 and 2: April Fools Elders! (In the spirit of April Fool's Day- our elders love their ping pong so we decided to mess with them!)

Photo 3: MY BRAIN (All is well!!!!!!  It's been decided it is just migraines caused by high amount of stress! #mission problems)

Making Bread!!!!!!!!!!!!!

                                                  Sora Marianna Prada, Sora Marcella and Sora Netti

                                                  Blurry pic but my love for her is stronger than ever!

                                                    All of us enjoying the yummy bread!!!!!

                                                     Us with Denisa's kiddos, Ioana and Adi.  

                                              Yes, Adi had major cavities!  Such a cute boy!

Sora Wright (my companion), Sora Bischoff (served with her in Iasi- err we loved shacked) and Sora Barrera (one of the fab 9)

       Post conference chicken fights as a district   

                                                                   Companionship bonding

Got talking to a lady on the maxi and turns out it is Palm Sunday and she had all of these vines in her hands.  She told me because Palm Trees aren't native to Romania, they use willow branches!!! HOW CUTE!  You also hang them over your front door to welcome Christ into your home!  

                                             She gave me some to hang up and I was so happy!