Tuesday, March 19, 2013

3-19-13: In Poetry and Truth

I (Claire's mom) got a phone call from someone in Claire's ward in Leipzig this week. At first I panicked when I saw a German phone # on my caller ID, but he was just calling to tell me what a great missionary Claire was and that they were very glad to have her serving in their ward. It was a lovely thing to hear and made her seem not quite so far away for a little while.

So Goethe studied in Leipzig over 200 years ago "in poetry and truth." I'm doing the same thing. Because I try to think poetic thoughts and study the truth. I get to learn from the scriptures every day :)

This week was kinda hard. We moved apartments and spent a lot of time cleaning our previous one (a new set of elders is coming on Thursday and moving in), as well as sanitizing our new one. My companion is still battling health concerns, so we just do as much as we can with the allotted strength. 

Das Wunder der Woche
I realized last week I forgot to include a miracle. Sorry about that. Be assured that we still saw miracles. As I said, this past week was hard with a lot going on and a lot to do with limited time and strength. Wednesday was our last day in our old apartment and we still had some packing and resting to do before moving. To do those things, we need to be able to get inside our apartment. Except that I may or may not have left the keys in the door and we didn't realize that until that evening. And in case you don't know how doors work, you need a key to open them. Except that if there are already keys in the lock, apparently you need pay mucho euros to take apart the whole stinkin' door. But we got our spare key from someone in the ward and went home, expecting to have to sleep outside in the snow or in a creepy German cellar (NEVER go in one alone) and praying that something would work out, and when we turned the key....the door opened! With the keys on the other side in the door. That, my friends, is a miracle.

That's the German word for investigator (someone meeting with us and taking lessons and hopefully getting baptized sometime). In case you didn't study your missionary German today. Take notes, people. This email spotlights Sandra, who is from Columbia/Spain. She has an adorable 5 year old son named Pablo and she just wandered into church one day because she heard people singing and saw the sign that all were welcome. She doesn't speak a ton of German and I only speak hotel Spanish (which includes the words for eating, clean, going, and everyone), but she feels the Holy Ghost and understands that. She told us how happy she is when she comes to church, meets with us, and reads in the Book of Mormon. She has a strong testimony of Christ already and she is just so great. That was my quick spotlight this week.

We said goodbye to some friends this week and that was a little sad. I didn't realize how much transfer calls changed your missionary world. One of our zone leaders went home home (does America still even exist?) and sadly, one of the red headed duo, Elder Duff, left to serve in Freiberg. But that's also awesome for him because he gets to walk by the temple every day. Sister Diederich and I stay here together for at least another six weeks (hurray for being trained like a normal missionary!). So that is good. Wherever we are, missionaries across the world are united in purpose and that is comforting. We're bringing the light of the Gospel to the world! 

Things German missionaries say (actually just one thing):
"She would totally freuet herself if we bring flowers." (it would make her happy)
It's just impossible to separate English from German. 

Quote of the Week
This is from a prayer Francesco said (see last week's email too). Hopefully that's appropriate to quote. "Thank you so much for Bach and that he could live in Leipzig because his music is SO BEAUTIFUL and I can't wait to meet Bach in Heaven and thank you for happiness." Because God gives us joy :) 

Keep on trucking along world out there. I love you.
Sister Claire Michelle Woodward

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