Monday, October 31, 2016

Happy Halloween

Halloween Party
So they don't really celebrate Halloween here, but that's okay! We did have an awesome Halloween party on Saturday though! Sora Majeran (A senior couple sister) put together the whole thing for us! She is amazing! She came up with a ton of fun games for all of the kids. The members also brought a ton of food; which of course, was all super yummy! The adults basically just had a dance party. We got to listen to some Taylor Swift, One Direction, and Spice Girls; to name a few. ha-ha. Our young women also taught us a traditional Hungarian dance so that was fun :) Sora Padgett and I did the three-legged race they had, and almost won! I also took lots of pictures. :) 

Halloween Party

Back to earlier in the week now! On Monday night, we went over to a recent convert's house for dinner! They are the sweetest little family. I love them so much! Sora Dumitrescu makes such good food, and makes a ton of it! So we left their house super full. After dinner, before we could share our spiritual thought, Fratal Dumitrescu started giving us a mini history lesson about Romania. It was all super interesting but I was really tired. Sora Dumitrescu saw me yawn and said to her husband "Lasa copii George!" Which means something like - leave them alone. Ha-ha!  Sora Dumitrescu is so cute! 
Halloween Party

Sora Padgett and I had to try to get around the city this week without Sora DJB to guide us. We fared pretty well, but we did get super lost one time this week. We were trying to find the apartment block of a member we were going to visit. I swear we walked around for like 30-45 minutes in the rain; just walking in circles trying to find the right block. I was getting pretty frustrated and said a little prayer in my heart that we would be able to find it. We did eventually find it after stopping and asking a taxi driver. We were only a half an hour late.....we felt so bad! But I now will never forget how to get to her house! (To be fair that was only my second time going to visit her).

Other funny story of the week; we were at a less-active's house and I asked if I could use her bathroom. The word for bathroom is "baie".  Well, she heard "paie" which is the word for straws. So she looked at me a little strange, said sure, and then got up and went into the kitchen. Realizing she must have not heard me correctly, I went into the kitchen and explained that she must have heard me wrong; I asked if I could use the bathroom. She thought it was so funny and laughed about it for like 5 minutes. 

Halloween Party
We also taught the lesson in Relief Society this week. It went well, no funny story there but I did want to share a quote with you guys that we shared in our lesson :) This is from President Uchtdorf's talk in Women's Conference. 

God “rewards those who earnestly seek him,” but that reward is not usually behind the first door. So we need to keep knocking. Sisters, don’t give up. Seek God with all your heart. Exercise faith. Walk in righteousness. I promise that if you will do this—even until the fourth floor, last door—you will receive the answers you seek. You will find faith. And one day you will be filled with light that grows “brighter and brighter until the perfect day.”
I know this is so true! Answers and blessing don't always come right away but if we keep trying and keep going with faith and trust in the Lord our lives will be amazing :)
That's everything for this week :) I love you guys! Hope you have a great week :) Heres a link to the rest of the talk for those who want to read it :) 
Halloween Party

Sora Vann

Monday, October 24, 2016

5 Months in Romania!

Saying good-by to Sora DJB for the week
So this morning we dropped Sora DJB off at the airport to head up to Cluj for a week because a sister needs to get surgery, but we will get Sora DJB back in like a week so no worries!  It will just be Sora Padgett and I this week! 

Monday night we met up with one of our investigators, Larisa. She is the one who took us to the Jewish Messianic church last week. We meet up with her at a restaurant and a guy from the church was with her. We were a little worried he was going to try to turn it into bible bashing and he did. So that was fun. Not. But Larisa said that she's reading the Book of Mormon and she knows it's true!  That's super amazing! She also basically took every handout Sora DJB had on her because she wants to learn everything. We are hoping this week we can meet with just her. :) 

Finally a picture of Bucuresti for y'all
On Wednesday, two of our lessons fell through and so we ended up going to visit a less active member our branch president has suggested we go try to see. We stopped and got her a flower on the way. Well, we get there and she lets us in and we ask her how she is doing and she just breaks down crying. Turns out her sister and nephews had just died in a car accident the week before. She said she was so glad that we came to visit her. The crazy thing is that when our branch president told us to try to go visit her this week he had no idea what had happened. It really showed me that Heavenly Father knows each one of his children and watches out for them and will take care of them. 

Lunch with our Iranian friends
Oh yeah! I got to meet a recent convert couple this week who are from Iran! They are amazing! We went over and had lunch with them on Tuesday and dinner with them on Sunday. We also taught them how to make brownies :) She is an amazing cook and they both are so sweet and have strong testimonies :) 

Other quick random things: 
Our door after being heart attacked!
We had the most intense game of Signs this Friday night for games night. It was so much fun.
The Elders where supposed to go change a light bulb for an elderly member in our branch (actually one of the first members in Romania) and somehow they got lost on the way. So we went instead. Then all of us were too short to change we just had dinner with her instead. The Elders lose :)
The other sisters heart attacked our door Monday night :) 
Sunday was my 5 month in the country mark! 
Fall is everywhere here!
 We had a random guy on a bus this week ask if we would be his wife so he could go to America....I told him we couldn't help him with that. 

Overall a great week :) I love you guys all so much! 
I hope you all have a great week! 

Love, Sora Vann

Monday, October 17, 2016

How Many Sister Missionaries Can You Fit Under One Umbrella?

Sora Padgett, Me and Sora DJB - Greatest trio!!
I am in a trio now!  My companions are Sora Padgett and Sora DJB (Her last name is long so this is her nickname).  We took this picture this morning before heading out. 

View of the Chapel from our apartment

It has rained a lot here! Which is ironic since it pretty much rained my whole first week in Brasov as well! The answer to how many sister missionaries you can fit under an umbrella is 2 1/2 by the way haha. 

View of Bucuresti from our apartment

Anyway I'm loving life in Bucuresti! Its obviously a lot bigger than Brasov and I haven't quite gotten used to that yet, but I'm loving it! I met a lot of super cool people this week but I'll just mention one of them for right now. We have a couple from Iraq that we meet with and the wife makes super good food! They are super sweet and we love going over there and talking with them. I have lots of random little funny stories from this week! So here we go!

Us waiting for the Maxi Taxi that never came.

First one, we ended going to this Jewish messianic church service by accident this week with one of our investigators. It was super interesting and cool to be there, but afterwards they tried to start bible bashing with us,  so we peaced out. 

Second, we visited a super great member who lives a little outside of Bucuresti, so we had to take a maxi taxi. We had super amazing spaghetti at her house and a good lesson about the plan of salvation. We ended up leaving a little late....we missed the last maxi taxi back into the city so we ended up taking a random bus and just hoped we made it back to our side of town. We lucked out and were able to get home safe and sound :) 
Our feet waiting for the Maxi Taxi 

For those of you have seen the tv show Once Upon A Time and know who Mr. Gold is, we basically met someone who is him in real life! It',s crazy! We are teaching his girlfriend 30/30s with the violin (half the time we are teaching violin and the half is about our church). Sora Padgett is the one teaching her violin so Sora DJB and I got to talk to him for a while. Afterwards, when I said that he reminded me of Mr. Gold, Sora DJB about died! He is quite interested in learning about our church though, and so the Elders are going to be teaching him :) 
An eclair from a pastry shop we went to with a friend.

We went and visited a less active member and the whole time we were there she just kept telling me how cute and little I was and patting my face and such. She is this adorable little old lady who lives alone, so it was nice to be able to visit with her. 

6 Months !
Also exciting stuff! This past Sunday was my 6 months mark on my mission! Craziness! I can't believe I'm already a third of the way done! I'm so grateful for the opportunity to be here in Romanian, serving these people and the Lord. I've already changed so much for the better and I know I will continue to change :) I'm so grateful for all the wonderful people I've been able to meet this far. Its been an amazing 6 months and I'm so glad I still have another year :)  I also got to bear my testimony this Sunday since I'm new in this branch :) Speaking of this branch, they are amazing! I love them all so much already! I can't wait to get to know them all better :) 
Anyway, sorry this email was all over the place.  I hope you all have a great week! 
Enjoy the pictures :) 
I love you all!
Sora Vann 

Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Transfers! Hello from Bucuresti!

Bucuresti (Bucharest)  Just an image from the internet.  Kate hasn't sent any pictures of this yet.
So transfers (when missionaries change companions, they happen every 6 weeks) are this week and I'm now in Bucuresti! (or Bucharest is the English spelling) I had a train this morning by myself. It was an adventure. I ended up getting to talk with two super nice
Bucuresti (Bucharest) 
people, who after we started talking in Romanian, I found out they both spoke English so that was nice for me :) I'm in a trio now with Sora Djb and Sora Padgett, who were together here last transfer. I'm excited for this transfer :) 

Daniela and Me

Back to last week 
now :) 

Christina and Me
Super great last week in Brasov! We had an awesome branch activity Saturday night. We had a few members share their stories about how they came to know the church is true. One of them was Daniela :)

It went super well and we even had 6 nonmembers there! In between their stories, we had different musical numbers done by the missionaries and they all sounded awesome! :) 

Me and Sora Mesco
Testimony meeting was this Sunday, which was super nice for me because I got to go up and share my testimony one last time in that branch. I love them all so much, I'm going to miss them! Daniela also got up and bore her testimony which brought me to tears. She has such a strong testimony! I'm so grateful to Heavenly Father that I got to meet her, and become such amazing friends :) 

Sora Miron, Me, Alexandra and Spencer
Mihai, Me and Ovidu
We got to meet with this super awesome family this week! They live in our block and like to talk to us whenever we pass them. So we decided to go give them an invitation to the activity on Saturday. We thought it would only take like 5 or 10 minutes, but they ended up inviting us in, and we stayed and talked with them for like a half an hour! We just got to know them and it turns out they have been friends with the missionaries in the past! We are excited to get to know them better. :) 

Anyway, I think that is it for this week! I hope you guys have a great week! :) 

Sora Vann 

Monday, October 3, 2016

Block Knocking, Birthday, and Brasov

Elder Wilkes, Me and Sora Savoie looking over Brasov.
So this is going to be a short one! 

First off, we had an super awesome time going block knocking with Daniela this week! Block knocking is when we go into an apartment building and knock on people's door and see if they are interesting in hearing our message. We went and knocked the block next to hers and we had the most success I have ever had going block knocking! Plus it was just super cool having Daniela there with us. She was awesome! :) 

After we went blocking knocking with her, we sat in on a lesson with her mom and the missionaries in Switzerland via Skype. Daniela's mom has started taking the lessons in Switzerland, which is super awesome but she has to take them in English. Her english is pretty good, but sometimes she doesn't understand; so Daniela Skypes in to help translate for them. We stayed for it this time and it was awesome because the missionaries committed her to a baptismal date on November 4, and she accepted! We are so excited for her :) 
Elder Broberg's Birthday Party (Jacobsen, Wilkes, Broberg)

We also had an awesome lunch party with Daniela and all the missionaries on Friday. She said she wanted to do something nice for all of us because of how much we have done for her. We also turned it into a surprise birthday party for Elder Broberg (his birthday is in two weeks). We had lots of yummy food and a lot of laughing! 

Elder Broberg's cake

General Conference was good but I didn't understand a whole lot since we watched it in Romanian. ha-,ha I'll be excited for the next one when I can understand a lot more! 

The amazing view of Brasov from the sign

We also hiked to the Brasov sign today and that was super fun! Finally got to do that after being here for about 20 weeks! 

Anyway I told you guys it would be short, but I hope you all have a great week!
The Brasov sign
 I love you guys! 


Sora Vann