Thursday, April 30, 2015

The Whistling Elder

Hello everyone!
So we have been doing quite a bit of tracting. Our area is the southwest corner of Debrecen, and there is a huge block of ten-stories there. One day when we were tracting, we were on a floor and we had just rang all the doorbells, and no one was coming out, so while we were walking to the stairwell I was showing Elder Flake a song I could do while whistling with my hands. Right then a door opened up, and a guy started laughing because it looked kind of funny. He said that he had never talked to missionaries before, but he would be cool with us coming back some time. So that worked out!

Picture of some 10 Stories in the background (Image from

The other elders came over the other night for dinner, and when they left, we gave them the keys so that they could let themselves out and then throw them up to our porch (the keys are required to get out of the building and through a gate to the street). Of course we missed the catch, and the keys bounced off a pole and into the neighbor's porch. We were stuck! And of course the neighbors weren't home, so we had no way of getting out of our apartment!!! So the next morning we just had extra studies intermitted with knocking on our neighbors door every 30-60 minutes. Our neighbor finally came home, and we finally got the keys! It was so nice to be able to get out of the apartment!!! Freedom!!
The weather here is really heating up!! Starting April 15th, we don't need to wear jackets anymore... So excited for that!!!!

There is going to be a zone conference this week in Miskolc! I'm sure it will be great! Unlike Veszprém, the cities in this zone are all, if I have heard correct connected by train. When we were in Veszprém we would sometimes have to take two bus rides (Veszprém to Székesfehérvár and from Székesfehérvár to Dunaújváros) to get to Dunaújváros. Using a train is a lot easier and a little cheaper, too! 

Image result for train hungary
Hungarian Train (from Random Google Image Search)

Sok Szeretettel!
Bunker Elder

Monday, April 27, 2015

First Transfer

Hello all!
Soooooo transfers were last week. We are now in Debrecen, which is the second biggest city in Hungary, population 200,000, second to Budapest, which is like population like five million. There are four elders, two sisters, and a senior couple here, so that's exciting, since in my last area there were just like four elders. I've only met a couple members from the Debrecen branch, but they all seem really nice! Last transfer, this companionship was just opened, so we don't really have anyone to meet with yet, and we also have a pretty empty area book -- So we spend lot's of time finding! A long time ago, there were three proselyting companionships here, but one was closed down, and the one I'm in was just opened up again. Five of the six missionaries in this District are new here, the only one remaining from last transfer is my companion!
Elder Flake is awesome!!! We get along really well. This is what we call in the mission his "dying transfer," or in other words, this will be his last transfer in Hungary before he goes home. So we are going to work extra hard to make his dying days in Hungary worth it. Hopefully we can get the work up here! Our goal is two have two baptism dates by the end of the transfer.
So the missionaries here in Debrecen are me, Elder Flake from Arizona, Elder Ady from Canada, Elder Simmons from Virginia, Sister Sellers from Idaho, Sister Geröly (Geh-roy) from Szombathely (soam-baht-hey), Hungary, (I think she is actually the only native missionary in Hungary right now!), and Elder and Sister Broadhead, who are a senior couple here in Hungary who work with Family History hear. The sisters here are Sister Training Leaders, which is really different than in the past, when all the Sister Training Leaders have been just in Buda or Pest.
The belváros, or downtown district, here is dominated by a huge Calvinist cathedral. We get around mostly by using the tram, but there are also buses and apparently trolleys that get you around this city, also. 

Image result for debrecen belváros
Calvinist Cathedral in Debrecen (image from Random Google Search)

The place we are emailing at is at the university library, since all you need to access the computers for free is a library card. This university seems pretty international. Right next to me there is a guy from Iraq talking with a guy from Nigeria.

Image result for debrecen university
Debrecen University (image from random Google Search)

Conference was amazing, of course! We were able to watch the sessions in English. We saw all of the sessions but the Sunday afternoon, which we will receive in the Liahona coming out next month. My favorite talk was the one from Elder Holland about the atonement (Link to Elder Holland's Talk). It was really good! 

Image result for elder holland 2015
Elder Jeffrey R. Holland (image from

Sok szeretettel!!
Bunker Elder

Thursday, April 2, 2015

Six Months!! (Hat Hónap!!)

Hello all! We had a baptism this week!!! Keresztelő means Baptism, in case y'all didn't brush up your Hungarian vocab!! Say hello to the two newest members of the Veszprém branch!!! 

Here's some answers to some questions:

Do they have any special foods or traditions at the baptisms in Hungary, or is it just like here--a talk on baptism, the baptism, a musical number  or discussion, talk on the Holy Ghost and then a welcome to the ward?
Yeah, It's pretty normal. The whole branch showed up, and then some, so the baptismal font area was really full. Also, the süti (treats and tasty baked goods, pronounced like shewty) were brought by everyone, they just kept on bringing out plates when the ones on the table emptied. And everyone just kept on eating. You can count on having a complete dinner at any sort of ward function here in Veszprém.

Also--how did the open house go?
We handed out like about 3500 fliers. It was well prepared, and there was plenty of süti, but no one really came... It was, however, a great chance to get to know the members better, and everyone had fun, so it was technically a success, right?

I guess the other burning question is did you or your companion get transferred?????
Um, we are getting whitewashed! Because of all the missionaries coming and going this transfer, almost every companionship is affected, and both Dellenbach Elder and I are leaving. *sigh*  I am going to Debrecen, with Flake Elder, and Dellenbach Elder is going to be my Zone Leader in Miskolc with Raymond Elder, who was my Zone Leader a when we was in Dunaújváros. There is another set of Elders there and the a set of Sisters and a Senior couple there. 

So, wait, the first companion you get is your trainer,
right? Is your second companion your trainer too? Or are there any
other special types of companionship's besides a trainer? I really
ought to know this, huh?
About trainers: technically, whoever your companion is the first twelve weeks of your mission is your trainer. However, when missionaries talk about their "trainer" they're probably referring to their first companion. After being a greenie you are a junior companion, and you have a senior companion. After that you cosenior. Co-senioring is when you serve with another missionary from your same MTC group. After that you are pretty much a senior companion the rest of your mission. You could be a district leader, a zone leader, a trainer, a sister training leader, or an assistant to the president. There are also two missionaries in Buda who are secretaries. They help the Mission President write emails and crunch numbers and stuff. When you are a zone leader, a sister training leader (which is like a zone leader but a sister, not an elder), or an assistant to the mission president, both missionaries in that companionship fulfill that duty. The sister missionaries that will be in my district in Debrecen are Sister training leaders. I hope that clears things up!


So today we are mainly packing and preparing lots of notes and stuff to help the new elders coming in! Pretty busy!! 

Also big news, just realized I've been on my mission for SIX months!! I'm one fourth done with my mission.

Next time I say Hi to all y'all I'll be on the other side of the country! Thanks for the emails!!!

Have a great Week!
Bunker Elder