Ģimenei un draugiem,
There isn't a lot to write about, sadly, but I will write you. :)
Here is an update on my cute little Liepāja:
"The work is going well. I enjoy it so much. Liepāja is blooming and we are really building relationships with the members here. We take members out quite a bit and do exchanges with them. We are slowly gaining the trust in the members and we are striving in every situation to ask them who they would know that they would like to invite to our next activity. We know that as they see us as diligent obedient missionaries who love them, they will trust their friends to us and will think of those who will be ready.
"Viktorija is gaining an excitement to meet with us and learn. We are trying to be creative with the lessons. We let her invite the members that she would like to join us. It is fun. We still haven't worked on a solution to getting her to stay for three hours, but we are trying to come up with something. She told us also yesterday that she doesn't like to come because they were talking about those who have passed away. This is a touchy subject for her ever since her grandma died. She said that she doesn't want to hear about it so she isn't going to go to 2nd and 3rd hour at all anymore. :( We're going to work through Ilze, her "adopted" big sister, and see if Ilze could help her see the need.
"Skaidrīte is doing well. She lost her phone and so also lost her number, but she had a member's number written down. She called up the member and the member was able to help her out. It was great to see that friendship there between the members. It makes me very happy that Skaidrīte can depend on them and that the members are ready and willing to help her as well.
We are working on finding, but haven't had a lot of success recently. We are really trying to work through the members so we hope and pray that something will come through with that soon. I love this work and know that is so very important! I love to be a missionary!!"
Today is President and Sister Boswell's last Monday in our mission as my mission president and his wife. President and Sister Harding will be arriving and taking over this Saturday! It is crazy that they are already almost done!!! I am going to miss them a lot, but am excited to meet the Hardings as well. Here is what I wrote to President and Sister Boswell about what I have gained while serving with them:
"President and Sister Boswell have made a lasting impact on my life. I know I was called to serve in the Baltic mission because they were here. I know that I knew them before this life and I love them for all that they have done for me. I have really learned about obedience while serving in this mission under President Boswell. He is a man called of God with the keys to guide this mission. I can feel that power every time he shares his insights and teaches us. I have really learned to be exactly obedient while serving with him and I am very grateful for that! There are times when I wasn't sure why he was putting a rule they way it was or enforced a rule, but every time I have followed it, I have been blessed and protected. I know that he has received revelation in my behalf.
"Sister Boswell is a sweetheart and gem. If I could run a home like her and be even a tenth of the person she is, I would be a much better person than I am now. She truly shows charity for those around her. I know that she loves each and everyone of us. She listens to our complaints of pain and illness and prescribes exactly what we need to get better. She is so patient as well as loving. She has become my mother here and I know that I can rely on her always. She is very wise, quiet, and dignified. She is the perfect match for President Boswell.
"I love you both! I know that I was foreordained to serve in the Baltic mission with you. Thanks for this opportunity to serve with you. I love and support you with all my heart and can't wait to see and give you big hugs after the mission! Thanks for the love and service you have shown to me. I know that you have truly consecrated yourselves to the Lord. Thank you for the example of consecration."
So, that kind of gives you an idea of the biggest changes and things going on. It is weird to me that the next time I write you, I will have a new mission president. I am going to miss them a lot. Luckily, I will get to see them one more time before they leave. I will see them this Tuesday (tomorrow) at zone training. I am excited and looking forward to that. I love them both so much. They are angels from heaven.
Now, to describe the title to my email. It is Līgo holidays today and tomorrow. This is a pagan holiday to celebrate the longest night of the year, which is tonight. The sun won't set until like 11 and will rise again at about 2 in the morning! This is one of their biggest holidays!! We'll be celebrating tonight with the branch. How they usually celebrate is they jump over a bonfire (it is supposed to bring fertility). They also will cook meat and cheese over the fire. Sadly it is also a VERY BIG drinking holiday. So, we have to be careful for ourselves. It is sad that they drink so much, but that is just how it is. They also create these wreaths for their heads.Girls make pretty one that is grass braided together with flowers and men have ones that are very big oak leaves. It is so interesting and the whole holiday comes from their pagan roots. It also is all supposed to be to suppport fertility! :)
Well, I'm running out of time. I just want to share my testimony that God loves us. I have really truly felt his love this week. He wants us to succeed in this work, and we can . We are on the winning team! He has given angels to protect us and will do all he can on his side to help us succeed, we just need to decide if we want to succeed and if we do, follow him and keep his commandments. It is possible for all to find God and find the path back to him. It is a happier life with him than without, I know that as a fact! I love you all. Thanks for the love and prayers.
Laimīgus Līgo Svētkus! (Happy Līgo holiday!!)