Monday, October 28, 2013

Jacob in Romania

Family!!!!                                                      10-28-2013

How is everyone doing!!?? It was a really good week this week. It went
by really slow but a lot of things happened.

Like I mentioned last week I had Zone training meeting last week. It
was a really good meeting and my new zone is different but really
strong and big. Well, big compared to other zones in the mission.

So, this week Craiova has been crazy. Every year on the last week of
October, Craiova does a huge festival. It is really cool so see the
culture of the people. There have been a lot of concerts going on as
well as a lot of people on the streets selling things. The city is a
lot more alive which has been really nice for us because there are
a lot more people around to talk to.

We made a sign for English class and have been walking around with it. It’s a little weird but it has been a huge success. We have had a
lot of people run up to us and talk to us about it. Sometimes it’s not
as good because they are drunk, but it’s ok. We talked to one guy for
about a half hour. He was a really big talker but it was really cool
to get to know him and talk about our church. It was a really good
opportunity to testify about Jesus Christ and the gospel. It was also
really cool because it was probably one of the first times when I
understood everything that someone said. Haha

On Saturday we had a Halloween party. It was so much fun and we had a
few old English students/ previous investigators. It was really fun
and just played games and carved pumpkins. I was able to meet a few
really awesome people and one of them said I could come and visit him
at his house anytime!! We are taking that up and we will try to visit
him this week. We also had a guy named Valrieu come. He knows a
lot of things about the bible and is smart but a little wild. haha we
set up an appointment with him this Thursday so we will see how that

Yesterday we had a great Sunday. We didn’t have many people show up but
the spirit was really strong and I learned a lot. I also gave a talk
in Sacrament meeting on service and charity. It went really well and I
said what I wanted to say. That night we went to Family Retelescu
house. They wanted us to come over and get to know us more. They
talked to us a lot and were so excited when I said I was half Cuban. They asked a lot of questions. We left them with a spiritual
thought which went really good.

Tomorrow we start English classes!! I’m so excited and I hope it goes
well. I am teaching the beginner class this week so it should be fun.

I love you all. Sounds like it was a fun week. That picture of Chester
is amazing. I laughed so hard. The church is true and the work is
moving forward. I love being a missionary. The crazy thing is I hit my
6th month mark this week. Its gone by so fast.

Elder Mayans

Monday, October 14, 2013

Jacob in Romania this week


Before I write you guys, I’ll answer your questions.

So first off, living in another country, especially Romania, is so
different. I have come to realize that the Romania mission is very
different from other missions. Yes, we still have the same purpose of
sharing the Gospel, but even from reading Will and Ryans emails, its
really different. Because of such a low success rate, contacting 8
hours a day is kinda pointless now. We still contact a lot but
President has now told us to do other things. Things that don’t even
sound like missionary work but can provide us with different
opportunities to share a message. For example, this week we went to a
basketball court and played basketball and when ever people passed by
we would invite them to play with us. Then if they did we could tell
them who we were and it makes it a lot less threatening.

But to answer your question, yes it makes me appreciate home a lot
more but at the same time I love the culture over here. Everyone kinda
does what they want and minds their own business. It’s cool to see how
they communicate with each other. The hardest thing is that we can’t ask
anybody to do anything for us because they have no money to spend.
Even church activities that are put on around the country are too
expensive. The church gives them some money to help them but it’s still
not enough. My testimony has definitely changed in different ways. It
has made me realize that no matter who they are they deserve to hear
the gospel. It has given me the opportunity to love the people of Romania.

So to start off with some big news!!! Transfer boards came out last
Saturday and something is happening to me. I am now leaving the city
of Galati and going to Craiova. Craiova is more on the south west part
of the country. My new companion will be Elder Harris. I have never
heard of him and not too many people know him. He is younger than I am so I will now be the Senior companion. I don’t know what to expect because it’s a new city and a new companion but I’m excited and it should be great.

This week, Elder Whitehead and I have done a few things. We did a lot
of contacting and block knocking. While contacting on Friday, we had
two girls invite us to go to a club with them. They really wanted us
to go with them and we laughed and told them we can’t do that. Haha.  We
also got a few numbers and passed out a Book of Mormon. We have tried
to contact them but they will not answer us now. A little frustrating
but that’s the way it is. Block knocking was a no success, we only got
into one block this week, all the others the people wouldn't even let
us in.

Also, Elder Whitehead and I were walking back out of the block, on I think
Friday and a big car accident happened right next to us when we were
on the sidewalk. It was crazy because it was so close but we were
right there to help out. We pushed both of the cars from the middle of
the street to the curb. One of the guys had a bloody face but was ok.
That was our little service for the day.

Yesterday was my last Sunday in Galati. It was fast and testimony
meeting so I got up and gave what they call my dying testimony. It was
hard to say good by to the members because I have known them for quite
some time. They all said I need to come back to Galati in the future.

That’s about it for this week. I love you all so much and as you can
see I’m busy but doing great. I love being a missionary and serving the
Lord. I will update you on everything that happens next week.

Elder Mayans

P.S. That is awesome about Abuelo. 

. Tell him I love you for me.

Monday, October 7, 2013

Jacob this week!!!

Hello Family!!!

It has been a fabulous week here in Romania. So many things have
happened this week that i dont know where. First off i will start with
my new companian Elder Whitehead. This was our afficial first week
together and it was really fun. he is a really funny guy and is always
cracking jokes. Hes one of those people that you can never have
nothing to talk about with because he always has random questions up
his sleeve. He knows a lot about Romanian and is really good at
explaining things so I think im going to learn a lot from him when it
comes to the language. Also hes a great missionary and he has taught
me a lot of things already.

Zone Conference (Tuesday-Friday)
So, going to zone conference in Moldova, we headed up to Iaşi in
Tuesday. We took a maxi-taxi up there but the only one that was
available was a detour one so instead of it being 4 hours to Iasi it
was 6. I love maxi-taxi rides for some reason. It is something I will
probably never do  again in my life. Its just a little bus with a
crazy romanian driver and it feels like you are going to die every
time. haha its great. So we got to Iasi late on tuesday and then early
Wednesday morning we got on another maxi-taxi with our entire Iasi
Zone (which is all missionaries in Iasi, Galati, and Bacau: I think
its about 12 missionaries) up to Chişinau, Moldova!! The ride up there
was crazy as well and they searched us at the border. It felt really
weird to move countries just for a meeting. I dont think too many
missions do that. haha So All Wednesday we had zone conference. It is
a really long day because you are sitting down the whole time but it
was still amazing. A lot of things that were stated at zone conference
were said in General Conference about the work hastening. I also gave
another 15 minute presentation during the first meeting. I didnt have
very much timw to prepare but I think i did a pretty good job. i
talked about the Brother of jared in Ether. It was mostly on
excersizing our faith. The brother of Jared showed tremendous faith to
the lord and the veil was uncovered because the Lord could not hold
himself back. Thats one of my favorite stories in the Book of Mormon.
After conference we went to a hotel. I felt like i was living in a
communist grandmothers house. It just smelled like Russia. haha The
next day our maxi back down to Iasi didnt leave till 3 in the
afternoon so we went around and got some stuff up there. Everything is
dirt cheep so I got a really warm Russian Catchula fox fur Hat (as you
can see in the pictures), A Russian Doll, and a communist flask. (
just for water ofcourse. ha) Then we went beck to Iasi, spent the
night, and then headed home to Galati in  the morning. We were sll
dead tired once we finally made it back.

So the weather has gotten a lot colder so a lot less people are on the
streets. Elder Whitehead and I went block knocking for the first time
on Saturday. We went into a block and knocked on every door asking to
share a message about the gospel or give them a pass along card. Block
knocking isnt very effective but sometimes its the only thing we can
do. We didnt have any success but we talked to a few interesting
people. Saturday and Sunday we watched Conference. I saw a few of them
in Romanian but most in English so that was nice. I really enjoyed
conference. I think Elder Ballard quoted Clayton Christensen during
conference. Pretty cool.

Thats about it for this week. I love you all and thank you for all
your letters and support.

Elder Mayans