Tuesday, May 26, 2015

It's getting warm!

Hello from Debrecen!

Yesterday was a holiday, so everything was closed, so today is our p-day!

This week was great! A highlight was President Smith coming to Debrecen to see the members here one last time before he and Sister Smith leave in July.

To see a picture of the Smith's, you can go here:  http://hungarymission.org/about-smiths

 He also came to a baptism of an investigator that has been meeting with the Sisters the day before. He was able to give several members first time temple recommend interviews, which was awesome for these members, who can now go to the temple. The closest temples are in Germany and Ukraine, so going to the temple is usually a really big sacrifice for a lot of Hungarians. 

Freiberg Germany Temple (image from lds.org)
Kyiv Ukraine Temple (image from lds.org)
A member who was baptized about six months ago in Debrecen recently came back from the UK this week to spend some time at home before he heads off to Norway (or Sweden?). He is an international chef, and a really cool guy. 

Two members in here are also about to go on missions. Szilvia, one member, just got her call to Canada, and Dori just had her final interview with the mission president. We are really excited for them!!

Transfers are coming up!!! I am pretty sure that I am staying here in Debrecen, but there is a possibility that I may be transferred... transfers are always a suprise! Lucky us, the weather has been great, but a couple days it has been too hot to be outside! These are the days the we tract the ten stories. I really like tracting, because we are guaranteed an opportunity to talk about the gospel with someone, if only for a couple of seconds. 

Sok szeretettel!
Bunker Elder

Thursday, May 21, 2015

An Amazing Conversion Story

This week was a busy week!

On Tuesday we went up to Budapest for quarterly interviews with the mission president. I feels so crazy that I have already been here for almost six months!! Budapest is always so pretty! Of course, we never see much of it in the bus or subway ride in between the train station and the mission home, but what we do see is amazing.

On Thursday we had Zone training in Miskolc. The zone leaders, Elder Dellenbach and Elder Raymond, talked about learning on teaching and finding with the Spirit. Everyone left with a desire to seek out the Spirit at all times and in all places in order to better help the people of Hungary.

The highlight of the week was having dinner in an apartment where two ladies lived. They were baptised almost 25 years ago, when the church officially came into Hungary and opened up a mission. They fed us paprikás csirke, probably the best I've tasted, and some Hungarian-stlye pudding, served on a graham-cracker stlye crust and topped with strawberries, but the best part was their conversion story. Zsoka and Valéria lived together in the same apartment to save rent money, and they had a strong friendship and a love for the Bible. However, neither of them ever went to any specific church, even though they knew that it would be good to go to church from their study of the scriptures. Valéria said it was kind of like the feelings that Joseph Smith had, not knowing if any of the churches were true. One day Zsoka was in the bélvaros (downtown) doing some shopping. It was raining a little and she was in a little bit of a bad mood. She saw the missionaries across the square with a table set up with fliers and such. She walked briskly to avoid them, and came out a few minutes later with her shopping. By now she had forgotten the missionaries and was thinking about other things, when one of the missionaries stuck out a copy of Selections from the Book of Mormon in front of her and asked her "Ismered ezt a könyvét?" (or "are you familiar with this book?). She said that she wasn't familiar with the book, but then her eye caught the phrase "egy másik tanúbizonyság Jézus Krisztusról" (or "another testament of Jesus Christ) on the cover and said that she was, however, familiar with Jesus Christ. By the end of the conversation she invited the missionaries over to talk more about their message. As Zsoka and Valéria read the Book of Mormon (or the translated selections from it), they said so many of their questions were answered. They said that the missionaries had trouble keeping the lessons focused on the gospel discussions because of all the questions that they had for the missionaries. Eventually they were baptized, and became the first two Hungarian members of the Debrecen branch. Apparently, the mission president was thinking about closing the Debrecen area down, because it had been the only area in Hungary since the mission had been opened that had had no success. After they were baptized, the missionaries were able to find a lot more investigators in Debrecen, and the proselyting area in Debrecen remained open.

I hope you all have a great week!!!!!
Sok szeretettel,
Bunker Elder

Monday, May 18, 2015

Happy Mother's Day!

Hello everybody!!

The highlight of this week was MOTHER'S DAY!!!!!! It was so awesome to talk to my family!!! 

Church was great yesterday! Another less active member that we have been meeting with came to church! It was nice to see him and talk with him!

The weather is sooooo nice here right now! And all the flowers are in bloom, too! There are these fields of little yellow flowers that look really cool! I am going to have to try to get a picture of them some time!

We have recently been holding English class on Saturdays as well as Thursdays. Of course, it was a bit slow at first, but lucky for us three people came this last Saturday, so we actually were able to have English class.

We have also been meeting with this lady in the branch here who is in a wheelchair and can't use her hands. (I don't know if I have already mentioned her). She make paintings by painting with the paintbrush in her mouth! It is super cool!

I hope everyone has a greaaaat week!!!
Bunker Elder

Monday, May 4, 2015

Pig's feet and tail

This morning for P-day we went to Hortobagy! (This is a national Park in Hungary)


We went there, and looked at different whips, and then Elder Ady and a member here, both got whips. My companion and I  then went to a field and went whipping. I am starting to be able to whip with two whips at once.

This week we visited some less active members out in some smaller towns with the Broadheads, the senior couple here. One guy we visited was really happy. He didn't come to church for very long after he was baptized, because he lived a long distance out and his wife doesn't really like the church, but he still read the Book of Mormon and he liked the Liahona that we gave him. We shared a story from the Liahona with him and then talked about following the Holy Ghost, and then before we left we gave him a blessing. Another guy we visited lived in a little house on a dirt road in the outskirts of another falu. He had an accident a couple of months ago that has made it harder for him to come to church, but we saw him last Sunday, which was awesome.

Another man who we've been visiting came to church with his family on Sunday! It was fast and testimony meeting, and it was really great, and the Primary also sang a couple of songs for Mother's day -- (Mother's day was last Sunday here).

We also went to another smaller town to look up another less active member. The door was answered by her dad. We asked if she was home, and then she came to the door and talked to us for a little bit. It turns out that she actually lives in Debrecen and that she was just visiting her family at her family's place, which is the address that is on the records, right when we came to look her up! She said that we would be able to meet with her later!!

I forgot to tell you all that I had pig's feet! And tail! It was at a member's house in Veszprém. It tasted just like normal meat, as far as it goes, and was cooked in some sort of paprika gravy. It was really tasty. The tail had to be eaten kind of like corn on the cob, and it was tricky getting all the meat off of the feet, though!

Image result for hungarian pigs feet

Image result for hungarian pigs tail

We still have a really small pool of investigators! Finding people is especially hard, because most people that we've talked to have already seen us around here or there, and don't really want to meet. But we have been trying to come up with new ways to get people interested! One day we sat outside that branch house for a couple of hours singings hymns to the ukulele. We have also tracted a TON.

Have a great week, everyone!!
Bunker Elder

Saturday, May 2, 2015

The Golden Bull

Hello everyone! Great week this week!
So we have a new investigator. He was born in the Translyvania part of Romania, which is Hungarian speaking -- fun fact!! He lives a little outside of Debrecen. The background story is he visited Salt Lake City once, and he loved temple square and church and everything. So he came to the church building a couple of times, but no one was there. Then he came the other day. The other elders were translating for another meeting, and we were at home eating lunch. Elder Ady called us saying that there is someone who wanted to meet, so we came right over. We had a great introductory program with him. He is a singer, and he really loves the church. He says that he wants to be baptized, which is amazing, and that he wants to be an active member. We then called him up on Saturday, and he came to church, and to all 3 hours on his first time, too!
For P-day today we have lots of things planned, but I don't know how much it will accomplish! We split our emailing into two, so that Flake Elder could email a question home and get a response later today. We are also going to go whipping. Elder Flake has two Hungarian whips. You can go into a field and spin them around your head and then if you extend your arm with the right timing the whip makes a sound like a gunshot. No kidding! I am getting pretty good at it! There is a place within a p-day's drive from here called Hortobagy. There, it is possible to buy Hungarian whips. Maybe we will go and get one in a couple of weeks!
This past couple of days, a ward member who is actually a student from Taiwan, had a video game buddy from Germany over to visit. Today we all had lunch with them at the Golden Bull, an all you can eat here for a very great price!!!!!
Have a great week everyone!!!
Bunker Elder