Monday, September 30, 2013

Rough week

Hello!!!!!!                                             9-30-2013

So this week has been absolutely insane!!! Literally everything has
changed. So, I don’t really know the best way of
saying this but here it goes. So my companion has been
home since Saturday. And when I say home I mean he went back to
America! Earlier this week something snapped in his brain and he just
wanted to leave. From what I got out of it, he had some personal
issues he never cleared up but also he just wanted to go home.
President is really nice and understanding and for most situations
he would let you clear up any issues all out here. But obviously there was more than that. So yeah crazy stuff. Honestly I knew that there was something up because all transfer something just didn't feel right. I couldn't figure it out but I guess I know now.

I now have a new companion. His name is Elder Whitehead and he is
sick (meaning awesome). I’m super excited to be with him and it should be a lot of fun.

Elder Mayans


 So we had district conference last week and then we
went back on Monday. Then because of the situation with my companion we
had to go right back down to Bucuresti on Thursday morning. Down
there, I mostly was with the assistants and my new companion. I just
spent a lot of time in the mission office and also helping Elder
Whitehead pack. Oh, also, the assistants and President and Sora Hill
went on a plane to Arad for zone conference and I drove them to the
airport!!! haha. It was so weird!!!! It was flipped around and I was
the one saying good-bye to President. It felt weird but it was
cool to spend some time with them.

So my new companion is awesome!!! He’s been on the mission for a little
less than a year. He is really tall….about 6'5 and he is from
Colorado. He likes a lot of the same stuff as I do and he is really
funny. I’m looking forward to everything and it should be much easier.

So this week we are going to Moldova for Zone conference!!!!!!!! I’m so
excited. Actually we are leaving tomorrow!!!! I am giving another
presentation. haha they keep picking me!! I have done something every
single conference! ha It’s ok though, it helps me learn more about
different things. Love you guys. Thanks for everything. Sorry this
week was kinda lame. I’ll talk to you next week. Love you all.

Elder Mayans

Monday, September 23, 2013

Jacob Mayans this week.


Hello again!!! 
This week was amazing. It was a very hard week but I feel like I have done so much. So, we had our first English classes on Tuesday and Saturday. A little less people showed up compared to last transfer but it’s ok. On Tuesday, instead of teaching something I asked everyone what they would want to do and learn in the next 7 classes. I thought that would be a good idea because I don’t want to teach them things they already know and it involves them more. They had a bunch of great ideas like learning double negatives, conversation, how to use the words there, their, they're. etc. and stuff like that. So,then on Saturday I taught them about double negatives. It was really hard to do because Romanian is opposite of English grammar so everything that is negative is a double negative in Romanian. They understood a lot of it though and they say I teach well, so I guess I'm doing ok. Also, this week we went on an exchange with the zone leaders. I went with Elder Ward and we got so many things done on the exchange it was awesome. We got a few numbers from people as well as contacted a few others and talked to them about the Book of Mormon. It's been a challenge to work with Elder Anderson but everything is going ok. Yesterday, we had district conference which is basically all the members in Romania except for the northern cities. It was funny because there was about 100 members there and about 60 missionaries. Ha-ha The actual district conference was great. We had a few members from the mission district speak, as well as President Hill and the Kiev Ukraine Temple President. A lot of it was based on the importance of members doing their part. They were very straight forward but the spirit was there and I felt like it really motivated the members, and the missionaries, the importance of sharing the gospel. Unfortunately, going to the conference was absolutely miserable. Galati is the farthest city that goes to this conference and since it started at 10 In the morning in Bucuresti, we had to get on a tram at 4:30 in the morning. We got there around 9:30 and then we left on a train back to Galati at 6 and got back at 11. Also, I have had a sore throat and congestion for the past 3 days so that didn’t make it easier. I am now back and safe in Galati and doing great.
 Our apartment got a new door lock for the front door without us knowing so we got locked out of our house. Ha-ha for the past few days we have been calling random people to have them open the door. It was a big hassle but we finally found the guy today who has our key so we have one now. Ha-ha it was just a little typical thing that would happen in Romania.
 Other than that, that’s about it for this week. We did some service at a few of the members houses and we are planning on going to the orphanage again this week. I love serving the Lord out here and looking for more ways in which I can help spread the gospel. It is going extremely slow but all is well. This week we are also going to try something new. Instead of just contacting we are going to do a survey where we ask them simple questions like... What does the family mean to you? What makes you happy? And do you believe in God? Stuff like that where it’s a harmless way to talk to people and we can continue to give a good image of the church to the people. Also, Romanians love taking surveys and talking about family so hopefully we will have some success. I am so happy and grateful to be on a mission. Thank you for all the prayers and support. I love you guys and for all that you have done.

Elder Mayans

Monday, September 16, 2013

Jacob in Romania 9-16-2013

Hello!!!                                             9-16-2103

Hello again. Another week has passed by and things are going great.
This week has been filled with a lot of English contacting and Book of
Mormon contacting. It has been really slow lately because it has been
raining off and on over the week and nobody is out. Also, school
started up this week so most people were out of town before school
started. We have been doing most of our contacting as a district and
just trying to get the word out as much a possible.

Also, I mentioned last week that I was going up to Iasi for Zone
Training meeting. It went very well and our Zone leaders are a lot
better this transfer. We made a lot of great goals to help us work
hard this transfer. On top of that, President is changing the "Key
Indicators" so that we will now record the number of Book of Mormons we passed out and also our prosilyting hours. This mission is really hard in terms of numbers because most weeks, everything is a zero. S0, now nobody will have all zeros anymore and It will help us see how much we are doing.

On top of all the things we have been doing this transfer is a lot of
meetings. We have had  to travel somewhere once every week this transfer. We have District Conference next week and then Zone conference in Moldova the following week, and then watching General Conference which we don't know where we are going yet. It’s going to be hard trying to organize ourselves when we are doing so many different things but it should be fun.

So about Edward. Edward is doing great but it has slowed down a little
bit because it’s a lot harder to contact him. This last Sunday was
pouring rain so only about 10 people showed up to church. Edward showed up for the last hour. That was great to see and after church I talked to him and told him that we would really like to teach him a little bit
more about our church because he come to church all the time and seems to enjoy being there. So I asked if we could meet with him and he said
that school is really in the way now and he will try to come to
english classes. So, I’m hoping that maybe we will be able to have a
little lesson with him after english this week. I think he needs it
all laid out on the table and if it goes well we might even extend a
baptismal commitment.

Speaking of church, church has been crazy lately!! It is really hard
with all new leaders but we manage. I am now officially the branch
clerk and take care of most of the paper work. This transfer has
tested me a lot on my Romanian because a lot of the members have
questions and you have to say something back to them. haha Also, Elder
Poulsen who is the new Branch President has only been out for a little
less than a year so the language is still hard. But we are trying the
best we can and I would say it’s going pretty well.

I love being a missionary. I am so happy out here and I love my Savior
so much. I love being a member of this Church and the happiness it
gives me. I would be so confused and lost in the world if I didn't
have the guidance and direction it gives me. I love you all so much. I
miss you and hope all is well.

P.S- On a side note I haven't been mentioning anything funny or
interesting about Romania, soooo...

-Everyone loves to ride around town on roller blades.

-There was a bush on fire last week at night and nobody was around
it... we put it out but it was really weird because it was right next
to a bunch of bushes and trees.. that could have been bad.

-This drunk man on the street walked up to me and started talking to
me. I couldn't understand most of things he was saying but he tried to
trade ties with me and steal my pen.. haha

- There have been a lot of concerts going on in the streets because
everyone is partying before schools starts up again.

Monday, September 9, 2013

Another installment in the Life of a Romanian Missionary

Hello my beautiful Family!!!

Before I start on what I did this past week I want to write back to everything that you guys have been telling me.. Well, I guess that’sjust mom. But anyways it sounds like it was a really busy week with the summer ending and school starting. I can’t believe Sarah is now going to Travis Ranch! Still remember when I went there and it doesn't feel like that long ago. And it was Sarah’s Birthday!!!


SARAH!!! I can’t believe you are 11 years old!! That is crazy. When I come you will be almost be 13 and probably taller than me! I hope you had a great birthday and got all the things you wanted. And if you didn’t there is always Christmas. I heard you went to Sea World and also had ribs and potatoes! Good choice. I want to know that you are the best sister ever. I love you so much and I miss you. Sorry I didn’t send you a birthday present. I tried but it is really hard to send things. I hope you have fun going to Travis ranch and being a big Junior High Student! Love you, bye

As for this week it has been filled with some crazy stuff. President wrote me this week and said that he put me with a young missionary because he thinks I can handle it and says I will learn a lot from struggling. Ha-ha President Hill is amazing and I feel like he is trying to help me as much as possible but I thought it was funny that he said I would struggle for sure this transfer. Elder Anderson came in last Wednesday night so we have been with each other for about 5 days. The first few days, no matter what, always take a little getting use to. Elder Anderson is a funny guy from somewhere in Utah. He’s really energetic and loves to stay busy. This week I have gotten the vibe that he is still in a back home state of mind and isn't always focused on what is important. It makes it a little hard sometimes but I really am excited to work with him and learn from each other. We have also been making great food together. 

So this week Anderson and I have done a lot of walking around the streets to show him the city while talking to people/giving out English cards. English classes start on the 17 so we need to get as many as we can out there as possible. Last night we went to a park a little outside of where we usually are on the main roads to pass out some English cards. I passed out a card to this one guy with his daughter and then all of the sudden 7 gypsy kids started running up to me and asking for money or what ever I was giving out. They were super annoying so I gave one of them one which was a huge mistake. Then they all wanted one so we started to walk away. Most of them didn’t follow us out but a few of them kept crying, screaming, begging and punching us for about a quarter of a mile. I had enough of them so I told them all to leave and stop following us. It worked and it actually surprised me that I could get mad at someone while speaking Romanian. Through all of it, Elder Anderson just stood there and did nothing. Ha-ha Yeah, that was a little out of the ordinary thing that happened. 

On Sunday, church ran fairly smoothly. It was the first Sunday with a new branch President (Elder Poulsen) and new missionaries so we tried to function everything as best as we could. One of our members, Fratele Dumitrescu, told us in Priesthood that he saw Jesus Christ outside his window. We still aren't to sure about a few of the members but when he said that, Poulsen and I looked at each other and where like what?  I also gave another talk during Sacrament meeting. I spoke on the Atonement of Jesus Christ and on the blessings that come from using the Atonement in our lives. It was a pretty straightforward talk but I felt like I did a good job. I have really seen my language skills improve from first transfer. 

So this next week we are going up to Iasi for zone training meeting again. I have to give another presentation about contacting with the Book of Mormon/different approaches. It should be good and we will also be making new goals that we can strive to accomplish this transfer. Edward and Bianca went to the Black Sea for about 5 days so we will see if we can meet up with them some more when they get back. We have stayed in contact with them and I am feeling good about their progression. 

Well, I love you all. Thank you for all that you do. I can never stop saying that I love to be a missionary. It’s a lot of fun and I feel like I am getting closer and closer to my Heavenly Father every single day. Have a great week and stay safe. 

Elder Mayans

P.S.- There is a pretty big riot over here right now. In Russia they are doing a lot of strip mining which basically means that they are destroying mountains and because the Romanian government doesn’t really care, they are planning on going into Romania and doing the same thing. A lot of people are protesting and it gets crazy at times. I’ll send some pictures. 


Mom- yes I got the package and it is wonderful!!!!! 

Sarah- Happy Birthday again!!! Ha-ha

Dad- I haven't heard from you in a while. How’s work going? And Louie? 
  So in Romanian a very common way a word ends is with "lui" which is pronounced "louie" so when people speak it sounds they are always talking about a guy named Louie! Ha-ha 

Chester- Love you boy. Hang in there!

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Another awesome week in Romania!!!

Hey family!!!!                                    9-2-2013

It was just another great week out here in Romania. It’s starting to cool down a little and turning into fall so I'm loving it. First off, this week was transfers week and as a result I'm staying in Galati. I am getting a new companion. His name is Elder Anderson and get this, he was in my district in the MTC! So it’s just going to be 2 pretty new elders in Galati. I’m really excited and we are going to learn a lot from each other. Since we are still pretty young, we are going to have to learn because there is no senior companion. I talked to him on the phone the other day and he sounds a little worried. Ha-ha He’s a super chill guy and I'm not worried about us at all. As for the rest of my district, Elder Ward is going to Iaşi and Elder Cunningham is going to Bucharest. Elder Ward will now be my Zone Leader so I I'm looking forward to that.

So a few things happened this week. First off, we had our last English class on Saturday. Everyone decided they wanted to watch Hotel Transylvania in English with Romanian subtitles. That movie is so funny and everyone in the class got a kick out of it. Unlike last transfer with only one English student, it was a lot harder to say goodbye to them because it was a really good class and they all liked us. I feel like we really helped them understand who we are and what we represent. Hopefully some of them will come back in the near future and want to learn more.
Also this week we visited the Prada Family. They served us dinner ( Ardei îm Pluţi), which is basically stuffed peppers filled with meat and other things. They were super good. The Prada's are pretty funny people. They are old Romanians who just sit in their house all day. Brother Prada is obsessed with reading all the Ensigns so he is always quoting things from different prophets. They are really down to earth and we had a good conversation with them. 
This week for FHE We had two members show up. We ended up just eating ice-cream and talking. 

As for missionary work, Edward and Bianca are still improving. They went to church yesterday, which makes that 2 weeks in a row. They are one of the reasons I am super excited to stay so that I can still stay in contact with them. I really feel like they will be baptized in the near future. They are still pretty young so we will have to contact their parents and see if it will be ok. 

 Also this week we met a guy on the street named George. He is Australian so he always speaks English. I wouldn't say he’s an investigator because our first encounter with him was him making fun of us. Ha-ha But we actually met up with him a few days ago and talked a lot about the gospel. His whole family is atheist and he has never really looked into any type of religion so he was surprised about a lot of the things we told him. If nothing comes out of it, at least we set him straight about what we believe. He thinks we are cool guys so hopefully he sees that we are normal people and what we are saying is true. Also George is always inviting us to hang out with girls or go out and get a beer. We have told him many times but it is just not clicking with him that we don’t do that stuff. Ha-ha 

Like I said before it felt like a good week. I feel like we did less contacting and had more success. It’s slow but there is progress. I love serving in Galati and doing all that I can to help the people here. There is no other place I’d rather be. I love this Gospel with all my heart and I am so grateful for the knowledge I have of my Heavenly Father and my Savior Jesus Christ. 

Sorry I am sending this letter so late. We just had the biggest branch BBQ party show up. It was great. I will post pictures.

Love you all. 

Elder Mayans