Hello my family!
Wow you are all sounding so good and it was so great to get all those great reports. It is just fun to hear from ya, thanks for making my day! Things are also going well here in good ol' Zavodskoy and we continue to just do the good work amongst our brothas here. It's been a good ol' week and we got some good stuff here! First off, thanks for the fun letters from the ward bros. Man they sound so good, how ‘bout big Tanner bein’ big brother Tanner?! That was fun to read, you will have to tell him I love him and drrrrrr for me. And then also big Brayden being the zone leader! I bet he is just doing so great, it sounds like he loved his area. And, of course it was so fun to hear from you guys. Sarah, way to be doin’ it big at the big LP and just havin’ a good time. Just enjoy and wear out the white jumpsuit. Tanner, that was a fun little letter, and we'll have to order up a thunderstorm bike ride for a year down the road. And of course thanks for the letter Emily! I love hearin’ from you and hope you are havin’ a good time up with the mighty miners! Man you guys are just makin’ me proud. Haha way to go. And mom and dad- just love you guys, thanks for the nice notes. :)
Well to give you a little bit of an update, I will...tell you. We had a sweet week with some investigators comin’ to play! Ivan has been a little bit of a goof ball. We couldn't get a hold of him Monday, Tuesday he wasn't at his house for fam night, and he didn't come to sports night Wednesday. Super bummer. We tried to get a hold of him, but he didn't answer. He did show up to Sacrament though which was cool and sat with me, but then bailed while I was talkin’ to someone, so we really don't know what the deal is there. Bummer is all I got to say. We're still hoping for the 29th with him, but obviously gotta talk to him and things and get him real about this. On the other hand, Sergei has been makin’ quite the come back! It has been interesting to talk to the members (the one's they live with) and hear their opinions from working with them and just having them basically as their two sons. Sergei is definitely a little more wild, but Galina tells us how he is just obedient- the most obedient of her "sons". (they have a son my age in the army right now- it is mandatory to serve a year here) He also loves to pray and she told me about how he will say "let's all hurry and get together and pray so I can get to bed!" or "who's gonna pray with me before I leave?" It is pretty cool, and he is always with us to come to activities. He has had quite the past as well he had us come over the other night and then he walked home with us. It's getting pretty dark now by 7:30 ish and so he wanted to walk us home. He was telling us all ‘bout his old stuff, and even dealings with the mafia. Pretty crazy stuff- who knows what's gone on here. But we are crazy excited to work more with him, he came in a white shirt and tie yesterday to church and looked way good.
We also have been very blessed with a guy named Roman. He is 28 and we found him on the street last Sunday. He was walking in front of us, and we caught up to him thinking we were talking to the typical Zavodskoy punk. He ended up being so cool and was just this quiet guy that long story short is looking to change his life- he also has some head problem that he has these really bad headaches and it feels better when he prays. So we've gotten a call about every day to pray with him! So cool- we were able to set a date with him as well for the 29th! We had to tell him he would have to quit smoking, and he just stared at the ground and sat there....and sat.....then just looked up and said "ok, i will" Ya baby! So we are so excited for him.
We just continue to find and do the work here, it is just good. To answer questions about the place- Zavodskoy is definitely an interesting one. We have the greatest branch, but I don't know that it would be my first place to go on vacation. Saratov is pretty much the armpit of Russia most say, and Zavodskoy means "factory" so we are in the factory area, I like to think of it as the Geneva Road of Saratov. But it is so good, there are definitely your selection of crazies, but also those who are so prepared, those that are not quite as wealthy and looking for things to change them. We spend a lot of time on the streets and have some pretty dusty and dirty shoes by the end of the day- the interstate UDOT project hasn't quite hit Saratov yet. I want to attach a pic of us all over at Stas and Galina's- the "family" of Sergei and Ivan at family night. The Stephens came and it was fun and some good translating practice- it was Ivan's birthday so the Stephens came. Well time is running out, but I just hope you feel my love for each of you. I also pray for you and hope for your success and that all is good at home! I love you all and am so grateful to have the peace that we are an eternal family!