Monday, January 28, 2013

From Dad.

Hey Dad,

Thanks so much for the music you sent last week. This past week has been very stressful and crazy so I have had no time to practice the piano music or my oboe. I have dreams about doing it but we never have time. Last Monday we did go to the Deutscher Auswanderer Haus, a museum all about the 7 million emigrants that went through Bremerhavens harbor to get to the United States between the 1800 and 1900's. I was such a wonderful museum. Sister Dean and I spent over 3 hours looking at just the first half and we were trying to go fast. We still didn't get to read everything but it was wonderful. They have an exhibit opening in September about Germans going to Australia. It's really interesting how so many Germans emigrated to so many other parts of the world. Its a museum that you and Mum would really love.

Preparations with the XXXXXX is awesome. I really love teaching about the temple because it makes me feel like I'm there again. I miss it. The branch is having a temple trip together so he will receive his own endowment in March and then he and his wife will be sealed. It's really neat to see how excited they are. He has a hard time remembering everything but who doesn't. He is just really excited to be sealed to his wife. He's a funny old man. He used to be a piano teacher and still plays the piano. I like to ask him what he plays and hear him tell all about it. I told him that you studied piano in the university too and so he was asking about you.

I'm not sure if I'll be training or not. It seems we are having a large influx of missionaries exactly when we need it. Two sisters have gone home mid transfer this transfer already and two more will be going home because they are done with their missions so that leaves a lot of open spaces that have to be filled. Anything is possible though, right? We're trying to help XXXXXXXX get the Book of Mormon on CD because she cannot read English or German and they don't have it in her native tongue. The problem is that the Book of Mormon on CD that our office has is an MP3 file and so her CD player doesn't play it. Its a work in progress. Right now we're just trying to teach her about Jesus Christ, who he is and why we need him. We didn't get to take XXXXXXX on a tour of the church because it snowed a lot this past week and she doesn't go out when it snows or is icy due to a horrible accident she had in the snow many years ago. She is almost finished with 2 Nephi though and she told us last night that her favorite scripture so far is 2 Nephi 26:24. I LOVE it when investigators have favorite scriptures. An investigator we had in Halberstadt had his memorized. Its so awesome! We're hoping we can give XXXXXXX a tour this week since all the snow is melted through the rain last night.

We were missing our last speaker in Sacrament meeting too so Sister Dean and I were both asked to get up and share our testimonies. I shared Jacob 4:6-7 and how through personal scripture study we and truly receive this power of faith to do all things and a hope to accomplish our goals. James E. Talmage talks about in Jesus the Christ how faith is truly a power greater than the law of gravity or anything like that. It is in the Chapter where Christ walks on water. I'm really loving this book.

It is exciting to hear that the vaccine management system for the U.S. is almost done. Is it such a wonderful relief to see it start as a baby and go through all this pilot programs to finally be finished and a fully functioning machine? Do you get to pick the non-profit organizations that you help with CCT Atlanta? Are you still on the juvenile court ? You're just a busy man Dad. Thanks for all the love and support you give me through prayers and emails. I miss you bunches but I've only got three more months. I can do this. I love you Dad. Have a great week!

I know it, I live it, I love it!

Hey Mumma,

  Man I miss you. This week seemed rough and good all at the same time. The talk by Elder Bednar that you used for your lesson was actually something he gave to us in the MTC. But he did a much more detailed and awesome job in the MTC for Christmas. I have to remember though that he is speaking to the whole world in General Conference though and not just a bunch of missionaries high on the spirit. It also hit me really hard how stark a difference it is to have a testimony and be converted to the gospel. It really made me think about what kind of person I was and am and ask myself if I really am converted to the gospel. I've enjoyed reading in Jacob again too. Sister Dean and I were asked to get up and share our testimonies in Sacrament meeting because a speaker didn't show up. I shared Jacob 4:6-7 because it really stood out to me. Through personal scripture study we can receive this power to do all things, to have hope in our future and faith to change it. James E. Talmage talks about in Jesus the Christ how faith truly is a power above gravity, above the laws that we understand and that when we really use it we can do all things unimaginable to the natural man. Makes me wonder how strong my faith actually is. It really is a spiritual gift to have faith so strong as Christ, but it is possible. We just have to access it.

    I'm glad you and Eli got to visit Mrs. Hash and that she seems to be doing much better. Is she still teaching or did she finally retire? Anything home made (food) will be great to feed the missionaries for dinner. We had a lunch appointment yesterday after church. The grandma had prepared everything Saturday so we could come home from church and eat but as Sunday came around whatever she had made Saturday went bad so we had a hodge podge of things that they had as left overs. I REALLY liked that meal. It just tasted so real and homey. Everyone having some kind of leftover. The funny part was that everyone brought a dessert so we had plenty of food. They really love the brownies I bake. Brownies don't exist here.

    That's fun that you, Lyndel, and Ellen all did Yoga. I did some before and on my mission but it always made my wrists hurt. Did that happen to you? You should totally go in to a class when you feel up to it. That would be fun. You could bring Lyndel and Ellen along with you. Sister Dean has ADHD and exercise is one way that she can relieve her extra energy. Well XXXXXXX gave her some Richard Simmons work out DVD's and President Kosak said Sister Dean could use them and it's just been hilarious. They're called ''Sweatin' to the Oldies'', ''80's Blast Off'', and ''Party off the Pounds.'' I'm not sure whats more funny dancing to them or just watching the people do the dances. It really does help Sister Dean though so that's good. XXXXXXX calls Sister Dean Mrs. Simmons, haha :)
    The Producers is way funny. There is a film with Nathan Lane and Matthew Broderick. I love the song, ''Springtime for Hitler.'' Not something I can sing here but it does come in my head a lot :) I'm excited that Uncle Alan and Auntie Isobel are coming to visit. It'll be good.

      Make sure to keep everyone happy and healthy and safe. We also had to drop an investigator and it turned out to be a very tense experience. They were told to never contact the missionaries again. I'll just save the story for when I come home.

   This week we have lots of plans to find some new people who are really wanting to progress and excited about this gospel. I hope you have a great week Mumma. I love and miss you!

-Ariel Nell

One month down... 3 more to go!

Hey Lyndel!

  Man I love your emails. It's like we're talking on the phone or something you just can't hear my end of the conversation. I'm so glad to hear that you and Mike and Meric and Rhett got to have a fun vacation together. It's good to hear that Meric is still pregnant because for some reason I thought you all told me she was due in December and I was starting to freak because I hadn't heard about the new baby! Riding the Otis elevator in the Biltmore sounds awesome! How neat. Good thing Meric was pregnant so you guys could have a fun adventure.

   Don't worry, I think about how many more days and months and weeks I have left often. I am so excited to come home to the family and just tell you all EVERYTHING. I feel like there are so many things I want to tell you all but never have enough time to do it. How exciting is that that your next vacation day is when I come home, woo hoo!!! I hope I come home super early so we get to spend the whole day together as I am sleep deprived! I'm stoked.

     XXXXXXX is being a boss, as always. She said she thinks of your hair every time she has to do her hair, ha ha. She is almost done with 2 Nephi and is getting the hang of using the footnotes. We're trying to give her a church tour. Hopefully we can do that this week. Thanks for sending me a package! I'll get it sometime around Feb. 20th.

   Keep working hard at exercising. Sister Dean and I ride our bikes everyday so that's a lot of exercise but she also does Richard Simmons work out DVDs in the morning sometimes or her Tai Kwan Doe. If I work out I do push ups, sit ups, leg throw downs, chair dips, and crunches. I've been too exhausted in Bremerhaven and really haven't done it at all. Lazy bum I am. Na ja. (no worries) Thanks for all your love. Have fun a work this week. Love you!

-Ariel Nell


Hey Andre!

  Thanks for taking care of all the school stuff for me. I'm so super excited for you to be in the Stake Young Men's presidency. Kind of crazy huh? Dad was super excited for you. We had lots of snow this past week but last night it rained and now it's just a bunch of slush that is left over. We had a street display with the Elders in our district on Thursday in Bremen and it was -15°C outside. We were out there from 10am -1:30pm and man was it cold. It was so funny because Sister Dean and I just went at it, talking to a bunch of people who walked by (Sister Dean even being able to teach people in Spanish) and trying to hand out cards or Book of Mormons. Well two Elders were standing behind our display table and Sister Dean and I told one of them that instead of standing he could talk to people too because we only needed one person at the table. He told us he wasn't allowed to contact people with us because that would be a split with a Sister. And thats when we hit our foreheads with our hands and explained that he didn't need a companion to talk to people. We were working with like a 5 foot radius from the table, definitely within sight and sound of our companions. And we explained that Sister Dean and I can contact people seperately so we can get more work done. It was like a novel idea or something. Sometimes we have to spell things out for Elders. Hopefully it helps them be a little more effective in their work :)

    Our investigators don't like keeping commitments. We only had one progressing investigator this past week. We've got plans to find some new people this week. It seems that the investigators with baptismal date don't progress and the ones without them do. What is that all about? Did you ever get the excuse that it was too hot so people couldn't come to church? We get it's too cold sometimes. Its just frustrating. Why is it so hard?

   XXXXXXX is doing fabulous! She is almost done with 2 Nephi and now has a favorite scripture (2N 26:24). We're trying to get her to come to church or have a church tour but its slow moving.

    This week Sister Dean and I will be going to the Kilma Haus. It's a museum about the environment displayed from different perspectives. It's a really neat building here right on the Harbour. At night when it's lit up it looks like a banana. We will be going with some ward members so that'll be fun. We had an eating appointment with a 92 year old member this past week and we got her to tell us war stories and I recorded it on my voice recorder. They're super interesting to hear things that happened to her and her opinion on the war.

   Have a great week Andre. I love you and miss you!
-Ariel Nell

Monday, January 21, 2013

January 20th 2013 - Happy Inauguration and Martin Luther King Jr.


Thanks for all the music. I'm super excited to pull out the pieces. I swear you've heard me trying to remember short people and just getting frustrated because I couldn't! Thanks for sending it! Sounds like you and Jonathan have had some fun this week working on pianos. I'm glad you finally got him to re-tune our piano so that I can play the strings out of it when I come home. I miss it! It is crazy to me that Eli is so huge. He was shorter than me when I left on my mission and now he is half a foot taller than me. He is such a grown man and will keep growing. He sent me an email this week. It was really fun to hear from him.

That is crazy that your mission president passed away at 94. He had a great long life here and is continuing to have one. Sister Dean and I are working right now to prepare a 88 year old man to receive his own Endowment in March so he and his wife my be sealed after 17 years of marriage. I was so sweet to talk with him this last week and ask if he wanted to be married to his wife for eternity. I love that missionary work includes so many facets and that it not only includes miracles and work for this life but also the eternities.

That's exciting that Rosie got married! I wonder if it will help her and her husband to be more inclined to joining the church. That's neat that you and Mum got to be a part of a fun celebration. The zone conference and presidents interviews was really great. President is getting ready or is in the process now of getting 20 new missionary apartments because of the over load of new missionaries and trying to decide what new cities to open. I suggested to him splitting our area and he seemed open to the idea and thanked me and Sister Dean for thinking about how we can make the missionary work here the most effective. He is really open to suggestions. It's always neat meeting with other missionaries to know that we're not the only ones who are working hard in these areas. The closest areas to us are and hour and more away from us so each missionary area is seemly isolated from the others. I can't believe you all will receive 84 new sisters!! How awesome is that!? Are you excited?

Sister Dean and I are actually going to the Auswanderer Haus today. It's a museum about the immigrants that left Germany to go through Ellis Island and immigrate to the United States. Its kind of like the other book end to the immigration story. We're both excited to go. We may also climb a huge tower to see a 360° view of Bremerhaven if the tower is open today. They said it wasn't open when its super windy, so we'll see.

Yesterday we had ward conference and a man that Sister Dean and I have been visiting every week to help him become reactivated and to strengthen his testimony has just been called as the second counselor in the Elders Quorum presidency. I'm so excited for him. He is really ready for this. It has been so wonderful to watch his testimony grow again. Sometimes all people need is a little love.

We had a pretty crazy week in regards to investigators. Some have decided to take crazy pills but other than that we were able to set XXXXXXXX for baptism and XXXXXXX is halfway through Second Nephi. She is just flying through the Book of Mormon and she thought that she would never read it. This week we have a church tour planned with her. Hopefully this will be the first step to getting her to come to church. She was really close to doing it two weeks ago.

Thanks for all the love and support Dad. I love you and miss you bunches!

From Eli.


HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!! Zum geburts Tag viel glück! Thanks so much for the email! Eli, I can't believe how huge you are! I left on my mission and I was taller than you and now you're half a foot taller than me!! Now you're my ''big'' little brother. Heavens! I'm so glad you stood up for me when they announced my name in stake conference. That was always my favorite part to see the families of the missionaries stand up and represent them. I'm glad you love your tie and that you take the Book of Mormon with you to school.

Eli, you are such a big example to me. Thanks for being so good. For doing whats right and being a huge example to your friends at school. I remember watching 'Mostly Martha' in Frau Alexanders German class. That is one of my favorite films. They actually did a remake into English but the German version is so much better. It's fun watching the film and actually understanding what is going on. You never thought your German would be that good huh? But it is! I keep thinking about how fun it'll be to come home and talk with you in German. I'll teach you how to pray in German, it's fun. It's really hard for me to pray in English now. I rarely do it unless we are teaching someone in English and then I structure my sentences in English as I should in German. It's just all a mess.

Bremerhaven is doing great. Sister Dean and I are going to the Auswanderer Haus today, a museum about the immigrants from Germany that came through Ellis Island. I hope you have a great day Eli. I love you bunches!! Look out for my birthday card that is coming to you in the mail!

-Ariel Nell

"I Barack Hussein Obama......"

Hey Mumma!

   I'm so glad that you got my birthday card that I sent and that it did put a smile to your face. I felt bad for not having a present to send but I thought you'd enjoy the card. This morning I got the pillow case and the face wash package. Thank you so much! I immediately put my new pillow case on my bed. I'm so stoked to go to bed tonight! Home made pillow cases are the best.

   That's so crazy that Obama will be sworn in the second time today. What an amazing feat. I bet he is tired but a hard working man. Hopefully he'll continue to be able to accomplish some more of the goals that he has set. It has been colder this week with snow again. lots of snow is falling outside. Last night It was -7° and -8°C. I find that I'm getting rather good at telling when it's below freezing outside because it bites. The colder it is the more my body has to work I think. Sister Dean and I got on the bus Sunday to contact a referral and I fell asleep, like hard core drooling on my glove. And then when we got to our stop I woke up and got off like I hadn't been sleeping. Its' just crazy. We're eating lots of fruits and veggies. I had a banana last night for a snack and most days I eat an apple.

   I'm glad that you got to celebrate your birthday with your boys at PF Changs. It's fun that Eli is so giant now. When I left on my mission I was taller than him. He's not my actual little brother anymore :) You and Dad are doing great jobs raising him. Eli actually wrote me an email today saying that he was reading in the Book of Mormon that I gave him at school and that it was a great gift. Just keep loving him and supporting him in all his endeavors like you guys did for all of us older ones.

   I'm so glad you're still on track with the scripture reading. I honestly think Isaiah in context is a lot better than out of context. When I was reading the Bible through I found the only way to study and understand Isaiah was to really pray for the Spirit to be with me and then also use the bible dictionary reference under Isaiah. It gives a lot of help as to understand what he was referencing in his prophecy and how we can relate to it.

   Thanks for finding me a new skirt and top and cardigan! I'm just not gonna know what to do with myself and all these fabulous clothes.

   Well this week Sister Dean and I had a lot of drama with people we visit. We're starting to feel like we're in a soap opera, instead of ''Days of our Lives'' it's ''Days of our Mission''. Monday night an appointment fell out so we decided to go by on an investigator that we hadn't had contact with in a while. She actually was at her door ready to leave when we were there and she told us immediately that we could come in. She said that she prayed to God the day before that he would send someone to her that could help her and then we showed up. Her boss was coming the next day to inspect her apartment because people at work were complaining that she smelled of cats. Sister Dean and I were able to clean her kitchen so well she said she would have to move apartments because she wasn't allowed to eat in her kitchen. Then Wednesday we randomly decided again to go by on XXXXXXX when we had planned to do it on Saturday. XXXXXXX said she prayed that Heavenly Father would send us Wednesday and we showed up. Its been really wonderful to see how we really can be answers to other peoples prayers when we are doing what the Lord would have us do.

  XXXXXXX is also in the Isaiah chapters in the Book of Mormon. We told her it helps to pray before we read when we want to study and learn so after saying our opening prayer and talking a bit we prayed again and then XXXXXXX wanted to pray. It was so amazing how strong the spirit came into our lesson because we were asking for understanding. XXXXXXX could feel it too and was just so impressed how quickly Heavenly Father answers her prayers. She said she isn't used to the fast response. Its cool.

   I hope you have a great week Mumma. Keep pressing forward. Spring break is coming soon! I love you! I had dreams last night of telling you things about my mission when I was home. I can't wait to actually do that!

-Ariel Nell

Long weekend

Hey Lyndel!

   I love your emails that you just blab and tell me more about what you're doing instead of asking lots about what I'm doing. You'll hear about it anyways so I love hearing about the crazy stuff you've been up to. I'm glad you and Michael have been able to help the Elders out. Make sure to encourage them to keep working even when they have hard days. That's when the miracles come. Sister Dean and I are just stunned that 80 new sisters are coming into y'alls mission. That's ridiculous. We had ward conference this past Sunday and a member of our mission presidency got up and shared with our branch that in the next little while we will be receiving 50 new missionaries, 36 of which are sisters. A HUGE ''Oooo, Aaaahhh!'' came out from the congregation. I wish you could have heard their excitement. It's really neat to represent this work.

    Its been cold here lately too. Yesterday evening it was -7°C and -8°C (about 17-19 degrees Fahrenheit). We never know how cold it is but I sure do know when its below zero now. The weather just bites, you can feel it. Thermal garments are better than sliced bread. And layering is a must. I thought I knew how to layer before but that was a joke compared to what we do now :) We're sitting in a ghetto internet cafe and Sister Dean and I are emailing with our coats and hats on. I asked Sister Dean this morning if she felt like a crazy person sometimes with how many layers we wear. She said she did. That's certainly how I feel. I swear, some people look at us and just laugh but if they had to ride a bike in a skirt in the snow they wouldn't be laughing anymore.

   I do remember that picture Mum took of us but I don't have it with me. Would you attach it to an email next week or throw it in that package? Thanks for buying me some more fabulous shirts! They're just magical. You can send the package to the mission office because we will have a meeting in February sometime. I just got a package from Mum and Dad today that they sent to my apartment in December. That's absolutely hilarious what Eli said about us. I've been telling everyone that Eli's birthday is today. I hope he has a fun day and that you all have good things planned. It's crazy that he is a teenage now. He can go on a mission in 5 years!

   Will Ellen be coming to girls camp with us too? I hope so. Teaching XXXXXXX is the bomb dot com. We called her Sunday after church to see how she was doing and she goes,'' You're interrupting me.'' ''From what?'' ''Yeah, I'm reading in the Book of Mormon. It's holy Sunday, you're only supposed to read and pray today.'' It was too funny. She is in Second Nephi and having a little trouble with the Isaiah chapters so we stopped by and cleared some things up and showed her how to use her footnotes. The footnotes in German in the Isaiah chapters are SUPER helpful, they tend to put things in laymans terms if it's a super old phrase.

   No new contacts this week. This week was little like a drug overdose. Many people seemed to have taken crazy pills all together and we were living in a hallucination. Its snowing today and I think will continue snowing the rest of the week. I love that quote you shared about sisters. (Sisters are like fat thighs, they stick together) Too funny :) Thanks for all the love and support Lyndel. Have a great week! Love you!

-Ariel Nell

Sunday, January 20, 2013

New York!


 I'm glad that you and Ellen have been having so much fun!

   This week was good. We got to meet with a 92 year old lady that we visit. She was involved in the flight from Ostpreußen to Germany during World war II and she shared with us some of her stories this past week. It was really amazing to hear the things that she lived through and to see that although she had such a horrible life that she is still happy, she has found joy. Its a wonderful example for all of us that regardless of our life situations its what we make out of it and our attitude that makes the difference.

   Be safe this week and keep having fun! I love you!

-Ariel Nell

Monday, January 14, 2013

Warm weather in January!

Moving in the right direction


 I am so proud of you. Keep up the hard work! Thanks for starting the Book of Mormon reading with me. It's not too bad. Usually 3-4 chapters a day. I have enjoyed re-reading it and it just amazes me how much stands out like its new or something even though I've read it before. I really like that about the scriptures. I am sooo glad you all got the Christmas package!! I was worried it never got to you all or something. I really like the ice skating girl ornament too. I didn't get myself an ornament because everything was just expensive but I did buy myself a bretchen (a little wooden board that Germans use to eat Abend brot or breakfast on) and then a hat and a bracelet from Manuel's Christmas hut. Did you like the chestnuts?  I wish you could have seen them when they were falling and the spiky balls were splitting open. I kept thinking of all the fun projects you would have done with them.

    I'm excited to do something at girls camp and that you and Lyndel will be there. I think it'll be more fun to be responsible for something. I'm excited to go camping with you two!

    I'm glad you got your hair cut and dyed. Don't forget to treat yourself Mum. A principle that we have be taught on our mission is that you can only convert someone as far as your yourself are converted and that's the same with treating yourself or helping others. You can only help others when you have also helped yourself. It's like the airplane oxygen mask idea. I never understood why I had to put my mask on first. My first instinct would be to put it on a child but if I don't help myself then I can't help the child.

    I'm glad that science proves that musicians have better lung capacities than athletes. I would have put money on that any day :) I am so impressed with how talented and smart Eli is. I love bragging about him to the Elders. They all know about Eli and ask me how he is doing when we all meet at zone meetings and things. It's fun. I think your new calling sounds awesome. I would love to sit in on your class sometime.

    This week was busy but good. XXXXXXX decided to start reading the Book of Mormon on her own accord and she is already in 2 Nephi 8. It is wonderful to see her talk about all the characters and really put herself in the scriptures. JWs and her nieces husband came over the other day to tell her false things about our church and the Book of Mormon. She told her nieces husband the truth about everything, told him she was a Mormon and that he needed to leave her house which he promptly did. She is such a strong woman and Satan knows just what a strength her testimony is to her whole family. Her brother asked her if we could come over and visit him and sit down and talk with his teenage son who seems to be a little wild in some life decisions. Her sister owns a restaurant and wants us to visit her and her parents have already had us over for tea. XXXXXXX has been the key to get her whole family to the gospel. It's been wonderful working with her. She has started saving all her spare change so that one day Sister Dean and I can come back and visit her.

    Mum, I hope you have a fantastic birthday on Wednesday! I sent you a card in the mail so look for it. I love you so very much and am so very grateful for your example in my life! Have a wonderful week!! Love you!

-Ariel Nell

Unusually Warm Winter

   I am so proud of Michael to be in school again. You can tell him he doesn't have to write me if that means he is doing homework other wise he should be writing me ;) I am so stoked to go to girls camp and to camp out with you and Mum. Girls camp was always a love hate relationship for me but I think it'll be a lot more fun when I actually get to work with the girls and teach as opposed to being one of the girls. I'm way excited. Hey - Can you give me the Davidson's address so I can send them a thank you card? I did get the package and let's just say I've worn the skirt twice and I've either worn the new shirt out or to bed everyday. Disgusting I know, but it is soooooooo comfortable. It's such a nice change from restricting nice clothes all the time. Thanks a lot Lyndel. 
   Yes Germany makes all sorts of things for Christmas in chocolate. There was even a camera that looked like your fancy one but I couldn't afford that. I dropped a lot on the tool and wrench for Michael but I couldn't pass it up. What do I get my favorite brother-in-law who loves tools? Chocolate tools of course :) I hope you like your gifts. I really loved them. That's so weird that Eli is texting now. So weird.
   Way to go for fellowshipping the new girl at church this past week. Yeah, a little crazy to talk about the Millennium but better than having investigators sitting in regular Sunday School with members saying false doctrine and making references to the temple that they shouldn't. Sometimes I feel like Sunday School doctrine patrol. It makes me worried for the Sundays that we aren't in Sunday school because we are meeting with the branch president. Keep being her friend. It is so much more likely for her to join the church when you guys really become her friends. True statement.

    We haven't met with XXXXXXX's parents again but XXXXXXX is a boss. Man! So this week she decided to begin reading the Book of Mormon and just couldn't stop. She is in 2 Nephi 8 and really does a wonderful job of applying the scriptures to herself. Laman and Lemuel drive her up the wall. And then another religious group came over to her house with her nieces husband and the nieces husband told her that our bible was wrong, that she needed to be careful with us, that there was no spirit world or pre-earth life, yada yada yada... and then XXXXXXX told him the truth about everything, told him she is a Mormon, and that he needed to get out of her house because he was a pain in the rear and then he quickly left. She is such a strong woman and already has the biggest testimony in the world. I feel very strongly that Satan realizes what a gem she is and how she is such a strong tool to bring more of the Lords children back to him that he tries everything to pull her down. He doesn't know who he is messing with. 
    Oh! and XXXXXXX said to tell you - the girl with 2 hairs, that the lady with 2 1/2 hairs has a lot of sympathy and understanding for you. We were talking about the scripture where it says that God knows the number of hairs on your head and I told her that you have really fine/thin hair after she complained about her hair. She wants to have mermaid hair in the resurrection. So funny!
   We haven't been able to meet with XXXXXX because he has been in Hamburg. I have no idea what he does for a normal job. That's a great question. I'm glad that you've got the reading schedule and hope that you can begin reading too. 
   Lyndel, Thanks for your love and support. It means the world to me. I love you bunches!
-Ariel Nell

Sunday, January 13, 2013

January 14th

Hey Dad,

The DVD is of Halberstadt. I can Send you all one of Bremerhaven if you would like. That's fun that you and Mum got to go up to the Van Sants cabin this past weekend. Our winter has been pretty normal. We are back at having snow (it started last night and continues to fall right now). I like the snow. I think its the only reasonable excuse why it should get so cold outside. Sister Dean and I were both saying this week how spoiled we are since last winter we were running around in -17 °C and -15°C respectively. 3°C is just wonderful!

That's so neat that Andre is being called to the Stake Young Mens presidency. He will do a great job and be a great leader for all the young boys. The Stake calls clerks right? Do you know who your new clerks will be? You and Mum did a fabulous job raising all four of us. I am so grateful that you two are my parents and not other people. The more I learn about other peoples parents the more I am grateful for you two. That's neat that you got to hear from the Blacks about how to raise children.

I would love to have some money in my account. I've been checking since after Christmas and keep forgetting to ask you to put some in. €30 is fine. I would like to send a package and then visit some museums here in Bremerhaven that we haven't been able to visit because I had no personal money. Thanks Dad.

We haven't gone back to the family from Egypt. A little too soon yet, but they're still in our minds, no worries. Don't forget to tell Mum often just how beautiful she is. She is a gorgeous lady.

This week we were busy. We met as a zone on Thursday for zone training meeting and president interviews. It's nice to meet as a big group of missionaries because then you realize that you're not the only one in the world. The man that we received as a referral last week has begun reading in the Book of Mormon and read the restoration pamphlet. He understood that Christ gave his apostles authority. That never happens. It is so amazing to teach him because he is smart and makes the connections doctrinally. We asked him to pray at the end of our lesson this past week and for the first time since he was little he prayed and it was fabulous. He was raised Catholic but said a free prayer, not memorized. Super cool!

I've come to understand better and better this week that when I feel funny in a lesson or something that is the Spirit trying to tell me something. We were in a lesson last night that I just felt like I had to be on the defense the whole time. It was not a nice feeling and very relieving when we were able to go. I passed out three different times in the car yesterday as a member was driving us around. It seems I am becoming more and more exhausted. ''Passing out'' is just a term to describe falling asleep. No worries. I'm well fed, I get 8 hours of sleep every night, just as missionaries we're tired.

What plans do you all have for Mum's birthday? and Eli's? I hope you have a great week Dad. Love you!

Monday, January 7, 2013

Happy New Year 2013


That's a fancy toaster you got there. Thanks for all the pictures. I enjoy looking at pictures especially of the family. Y'alls week was super busy it sounds. Sister Dean and I were just as crazy running around. It seems that we are always literally running to catch trains or buses or other modes of transportation. Last night we had a hour layover for trains in Cuxhaven so we called an investigator that we haven't met with since October and he was home. So in our hour break we stopped by his house to have a quick discussion about the gospel and what has happened in his life. It was really a productive meeting and then we booked it to the Bahnhof. On our way a member happened to be driving by and yelled out his window if we needed a ride to Bremerhaven. We said yes, and he pulled over and jumped in his car. He and his wife were headed to Bremerhaven to do their home teaching. It was such a miracle. The members even told us that they thought about doing their home teaching at the end of the month and then instead decided to still go yesterday and they just happened to be driving by as we were running to catch our train. They brought us straight home in 40 minutes and that journey normally takes an hour and a half. It was such a wonderful little blessing that the Lord gave us. When the men in the ward aren't doing their home teaching earlier in the month you can share with them this story and let them know how if they go early that they could visit their teachees maybe even twice in the month and help the poor missionaries as they are running to catch trains.

We received a referral from the mission office for a man. I tried contacting him but his number listed was wrong so I called the office and got the right number. Our first appointment with him fell out because he had to work late and then this past week we were able to meet with him. We gave him a church tour and taught him about the restoration of the gospel. It was so amazing to see how open and ready he was for the gospel. Sister Dean noted that those who are most ready to be taught we barely have to do anything for. All we had to do was call a number and set up an appointment. It was such a neat appointment. He is really excited to meet with us again and to read in the Book of Mormon.

Tuesday night we were early to an appointment by thirty minutes so we decided to go do some doors. The first building we got to a lady let us in a once hearing who we were shut the door so we doored the door right next to hers. A younger guy answered the door. We started a normal conversation with him about Jesus Christ and then we asked him about the Book of Mormon. He had never heard about it so we pulled one out and began explaining it. His Dad came up behind him at this point and was listening and then told us to come inside and talk with them. We asked if a lady was home and he said his wife. We all then sat in their living room and taught them about the Book of Mormon. It was a whole family! The Mom had just had a baby 5 days earlier. We talked to them about their faith. They are from Egypt and have been Christians their whole life and have had to live with a lot of persecution in their lives for their faith. The Spirit was so strong and wonderful in their home. We offered to come back the next day and bring them a Book of Mormon in Arabic and they were really excited for it as were we. Well the next day we came by and they had visitors over so we exchanged books and then he said he would contact us. We were so bummed but we plan on going back in 3 weeks or so because they were just amazing. Very rarely do we meet a family who have such a strong faith in Christ. It was a neat experience for us to see that when we are being diligent in all our time the Lord will bless us to know where to go.

I'm glad that you and mum are feeling better. Don't forget to take some time and just put your feet up! I hope you have a fabulous week Dad. Love you! Thanks for all your support!

-Ariel Nell

Letter Mission President 6 January 2013, Book of Mormon

Germany Berlin Mission Book of Mormon Study – Buch Mormon Studium 2013
It’s so important that we learn together and that we acquire information and knowledge in our personal study. It is critical to our success. We have to fill the well so the Spirit can draw from it. So it can, as Neal A. Maxwell said, “take the lead of an already informed mind.” We have to have studied and paid the price and acquired that knowledge, and then allow the Spirit to direct us and guide us.
President Henry B. Eyring stressed the crucial role the Holy Ghost has in spiritual learning when he taught: “Our [investigators – added by President] cannot know of God, and so love as they must love, unless they are taught by the Holy Spirit. Only by the Spirit can they know that God loved us enough to send His Son to be the propitiation for our sins and that Jesus is the Son of God and that Christ paid the price of their sins. Only by the Spirit can they know that Heavenly Father and His resurrected and glorified Son appeared to Joseph Smith. Only by the Spirit can they know that the Book of Mormon is the true word of God. And only by inspiration can they feel the love of the Father and the Son for them in giving us the ordinances necessary to receive eternal life. Only by obtaining those witnesses, placed deep into their hearts by the Holy Ghost, will they be rooted on a sure foundation to stand steady through the temptations and trials of their lives.  (President Henry B. Eyring, To Know and to Love God, address to CES Religious Educators, Feb 26, 2010)

Dear Elders and Sisters,
Therefore I’d like to introduce our united Book of Mormon Study in the first three months in 2013, starting 6 January up to the General Conference, 6 April 2013As an introduction, you might study first the talk by Elder Neal A. Maxwell, “Teaching by the Spirit—‘The Language of Inspiration,’” (CES Symposium on the Old Testament, Aug. 15, 1991).
Then, I’d like to ask you to start with a new “economy” Book of Mormon or your current one and to study and to mark it, in the language you understand best, with the following questions – 
  •   What role does the Holy Ghost have in teaching our investigators, members, and in teaching myself?  
  •    How can we know if the Holy Ghost is working in our teaching? 
Below you'll see the mission wide BoM study plan that we’ll be able tobe united in our study. Please, give me report about your study in your weekly letters. Also all Senior missionaries are invited to do the same!

Book of
finished by end of week
Seite am Ende der Woche

6-­-12 January 2013
1 Nephi 18
13-­-19 January 2013
2 Nephi 14
20-­-26 January 2013
Jacob 4
27 Jan – 2 Feb 2013
Mosiah 9
3-­-9 Feb 2013
Mosiah 29
10-­-16 Feb 2013
Alma 15
17-­-23 Feb 2013
Alma 31
24 Feb – 2 Mar 2013
Alma 48
3-­-9 Mar 2013
Helaman 2
10-­-16 Mar 2013
3 Nephi 3
17-­-23 Mar 2013
3 Nephi 21
24-­-30 Mar 2013
Ether 3
31 Mar – 6 Apr 2013
Moroni 10
May the Lord bless you that you might feel the strength of the most powerful instrument, together with the Spirit, for conversion – the Book of Mormon.

Warmest Regards,

President Kosak