Sunday, May 4

March 10, 2014

Labdien visiem,

I'll start out with my week and the work here in Liepāja which is keeping me very busy. We are finding a lot of new people and helping a lot of people progress in the gospel. I am helping my fellow brothers and sisters follow their savior Jesus Christ. We have two people with baptismal dates and two who are very close to accepting one! :D You can read about the below!

From my letter to President Boswell:
"We had another great week here in Liepāja. Sister Scott and I are really learning how to teach in unity. We teach very unified and it is so fun! It is great to try new things and see our teaching methods and Latvian improve together. I love working hard with her and serving other with her at my side. I love this companionship, this area, and this branch, and  I am so grateful for my time here.

"Investigators. We have Viktorija (she is our 10 year old investigator). She is still looking good for baptism on May 24th, her birthday. We are doing all we can to get her mom Līga more involved. It is hard, because Līga isn't very interested for herself, but she is interested in what her daughter is doing and comes for her. We were only able to have one lesson with her this last week, but she is still enjoying that which we teach her. She is very cute and energetic and loves learning. We also got her blessing certificate (a copy from her mom) so the branch will have a record of that soon.
We also found out that Līga is a former investigator so she knows quite a bit about the church.

"Inara also has a baptismal date for April 12. She so far is progressing well. She was found by Sister Stout and Sister Mitton when they did a drop by in our area. Sister Stout and I taught her a lesson together where she said maybe to baptism, and then with Sister Scott and I, she said that yes, she would like to prepare to be baptized. She has really seen the Lord's hand in her live and knows that all the blessings she has come from him. She had a brain tumor a few years ago and survived and I know that she thanks the Lord profusely for that daily. She was befriended very well by the branch yesterday for her first Sunday at church. She is reading and praying and has a real desire to know. We have plans to do a lesson at her house to help her husband (and hopefully grown children) to accept the gospel as well.

"Juris #1. He is our Lutheran. He is doing well. We found out in our last lesson with him that he didn't see a need to read the Book of Mormon. Madara (returned missionary from temple square. She is awesome!) helped us with that a lot by committing him to read Moroni 10, pray, and fast about the Book of Mormon. She told him he would never understand if he didn't try. She shared her own conversion story and it was very powerful. We talked with him last night on the phone and he had done it! It was so great to here!! We don't know yet what his answer is. He wants to talk about it in person, but we'll find out tonight. We are praying that it is good, but we've prepared to help him if it is not. I feel though, that he will have a good response to that which we asked him to do. We'll be meeting with him and Madara tonight.

"We also have Juris #2 who is progressing as well. He is the other investigator that was found when the sisters were here. Sister Stout and I talked to him on the street. He is 35 and very open. HE wants to learn more and is very curios as to what is here. He said that he would like to be baptized, but doesn't want to promise to a date yet. We gave him a Book of Mormom and commited him to start to read and pray about it. HE committed to read it daily. He also has a ton of potential."

Tell us a little about your p-days.
Preparation days are good, but also busy. We get up and do the regular schedule, which is 30 min to exercise, 1 hour to get ready (which includes cleaning on preparation day), 1 hour to personal study, 1 hour of companion study, and 1 hour of language study. After that we need to buy groceries and email. By the time you get all of the done there is about 2-3 hours to do stuff. We take some time to write letters most days and we like to go out to eat. Sister Scott and I like to go browsing through the shops around us. We live in the center of liepaja and it the shopping district of Liepaja. It is where a lot of the good stores are. We ourselves live in an apartment over a used clothes store. There are four apartments about it and we are in one. It is actually a REALLY nice apartment. :)

Tell us about your new area (city, customs, and culture).  How is it different than your last area?
It is a lot smaller than my last area. It is also a lot more cobblestone roads and dirt roads! I love the cobblestone roads. It really helps me remember that I am in Europe! The city cute and very coastal. It used to be a big port for Russia because of the way the currents are the main port doesn't freeze in the winter. So, when this country was owned by russia, they used the coast a lot. Also, there a ton of STRAY CATS here. They are very well taken care of though. The little old ladies build houses for them out of boxes and feed them daily. We have one that lives outside our door. He is orange and super cute! He is also well fed (we don't know who feeds him though. We've named him Runcis (which means tomcat in latvian). I'm not sure about customs. I haven't been here long enough yet, but I do love this city.

Also, one more little thing. I sang in church yesterday! It was so fun! I sang "Come Thou Fount" but in Latvian. It was beautiful! I loved it a lot! I sang with Madara (a returned sister missionary), Elder Christenson, and Elder Webb! It was a lot of fun!!! I didn't know how much I enjoyed singing or that I could sing good enough to do musical numbers. I love that The Lord blessed me with that talent.

My spiritual thought today I shared with President Boswell, and here it is to you as well:
"One last thing. I had a thought from my studies this last week that I wanted to share. I was reading in Helaman and came across Hel. 15:6. It says, "they are striving with unwearied diligence that they may bring the remainder of their brethren to the knowledge of the truth; therefore there are many who do add to their numbers daily." I really liked this. I feel that I am learning to work with "unwearied diligence" here with Sister Scott. I have found that that is only possible when one develops charity for "their brethren".  I have been praying for charity daily (this transfer) and have found that I can really work with "unwearied diligence" to help bring my brothers and sisters her in Liepaja to the knowledge of the truth. Also, we as a mission as learning this concept as we work with members and their family and friends and we are seeing the "many who [are added] to our numbers daily." We have had almost daily baptism dates. We are developing charity and must continue to do so so we can help our brothers and sisters come to the truth."

Much love,
Sister Cloward

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