Monday, December 27, 2010

Cold Mountain Letter 5

Boo yah! Christmas has come and gone. Lame. Christmas here was amazing, even though I was serperated from all of you, I was surrounded by my "other family" here. The elders that have been here in Ukraine for some while made it amazing. They knew how to make Christmas the best thing ever. It was a blast! We had some great breakfast and dinner. French toast with some fried cubed potatoes, and homemade pizza. Oh so delicious. Sounds like a lame feast but oh my gosh it was so good. I loved it.

Mom thanks for the package that you sent me. It had everything that I could have ever imagined. Thanks for the large Temple photo. That was the cherry on top. My heart rejoiced when I opened that brown paper bag and saw the Lord's house. How I wish I could go there, I will in two years. Thanks for the handwarmers, hopefully it never gets too cold to where I need them, but if it does get cold then I will totatlly use them. The photo album was a heart warmer. Thank you so much for that. I was so happy to show everyone else some more photos from home. Everyone was like, whoa Elder Young you were a chubby and now you're not chubby at all. It's crazy how much I've changed over the years. Other elders here have said that they have changed a lot while they have been here.Hopefully I won't change that much, and I really hope that I will keep all of my hair while I'm here. There have been some photos sent home from some others whilst I've been on my mission and Mom you joked that I had a receeding hair line. Hopefully that hair line doesn't go any further backwards and that it stays put. Mother, I'm wearing that Nephi drama club sweat shirt right now. I wear it quite oft when I can. I'm too lazy and cheap to go buy another one but that's okay. I'm warm and I really don't care what I look like. It keeps me warm and I shouldn't complain.

I'm not sure what else you all want to hear since I've told you a lot during the phone call but I guess I could just tell you the usual. We had two lessons planned for this whole week. One of them bailed on us. It was the older sister that has memory problems. We went to her house and knocked on the door. The radio was on and Elder Duke said that the last time the radio was on when he came she was asleep. She must fall asleep to the radio. So that was a bummer and then that meant that we would be doing another day of contacting. This was Wednesday and Tuesday we contacted all day long. So I wasn't too happy with the thought of contacting again because it seems like no one wants to talk to us. We walk around and around and around and try to get people to talk to. We eventually talked to ten people and handed out two Books of Mormon all in about five hours. Do the math that's like two people every hour and a book every two and a half hours. Brutal, but that is the work goes up here in Cold Mountain. Oh that was Tuesday and the results for Wednesday were one Book of Mormon placed and one contact received all in about five hours as well. It's hard. A lot of people reject listening to us and so that makes the heart and mind not feel so well and gets me down a bit. But after some time and prayer my spirits are lifted. One Wednesday during our contacting we were walking through a "forest park" and we saw some old lady just chilling there all alone. So we went up to here and started talking to her. She was pretty cool. She was really interested in what we had to say and when we gave her a Book of Mormon she said that she would read it. The down side to this great story is that she isn't from around here. She is visiting her family. Hopefully she will read and she'll get in contact with some other missionaries and take the lessons. That would be amazing. When we left she was like "Why did you come over her to me and start talking to me. I was all alone just standing here and you two came up to me. Why did you come over here?" It was pretty cool. We just said we are missionaries and that's our job. So it was pretty cool.

I went on a split with the Zone Leaders since they are supposed to go on splits with every missionary in their zone it was finally our time to go with them. I went with Elder Young. So there were two Elder Youngs together. It was crazy. He has one more transfer left in the mission and then he goes home. He's really awesome. We went to a lesson and taught about Jospeh Smith and the Restoration it was spiritual and amazing. I saw the investigator at church the other day which is totally amazing!!!!! He hasn't had a baptism his whole mission and he's really praying that sometime soon he'll have a baptism. The split was over and that was that. It was fun and I learned some new things.

Last week was crazy with the Christmas holiday but now that is over. This week should be a great work week. We are going to probably going to be doing a lot of contacting again but that will be good and it will help with my Russian. This week is also New Year's so that will be interesting. I've been told that there will be tons of drunk people out and about which is a little bit scary but if I avoid them then everything should be fine. We've been told to go home at 6:00 p.m. Hmm....what to do during that time. Studying and cooking making some good food. I've acquired some new recipes, thank you very much mom for those. You are amazing. Thank you so much. I know that I'm supposed to be in Ukraine and that this is what I need to do. It makes me feel so good to know that. Thank you all for the prayers and everything else that you all do. If I can add one more thing-take time to read the scriptures in your life. The scriptures are amazing I love how much power are in them. Just reading them can make you feel so much better. If you're having a bad day then read the scriptues and see how much better your day will go afterwards. I love the scriptures.

Elder Frank Young

Monday, December 20, 2010

Cold Mountain Letter 4

Dear family and to those that also read this letter,

My week has been really well. It wasn't the normal week but a week nonetheless. On Wednesday night and Thursday day we had a Christmas party/service project! It was a lot of fun to dress up in a suit and sweater and do to some fun things. The dinner was great and I had a great time.

Thursday was interesting because we performed service. We were going to clean the apartment building basements. Let me describe to you what it looked like. You have a big tall building and five entery ways to get in, which would mean that there would be five little basements. We had all of the Kharkiv and Sumii elders down to perform service. We all divided into different groups and went to work on the basements. We were told to clean them out. Ha! If we were to really clean them out I would still be down there cleaning. I have never seen so much stuff that is useless. For instance, half a chair, a delaptitated bookself, glass to a window, windows with glass, empty paint cans. Strange, but hey, I'm in Ukraine so I can't really talk. So yeah we tried our hardest to clean out the basements. They were pretty sketchy not gonna lie. I wish I would have taken pictures then I would be able to show you how it really looked. But anywho I think that I might have taken five years off my life from cleaning down there. That doesn't matter.....or does it? Meh... The service project, which was documented might made it to the Liahona for a section with the missionaries from UKRAINE DONESTK MISSION, so keep your eyes out or ears perked if something happens. That would be so legit.

The weather here is very tempermental. Some days it snows and then later that night it will rain or other days it will just rain or snow. I wish the weather would make up its mind so that it would be to do stuff, such as contacting or teaching lessons. With the weather it makes the sidewalks really interesting to navigate. The snow freezes which in turn, turns to ice. If the weather warms up it melts but by the night it turns to ice so it's smooth ice that is just begging people to slip. No matter what the weather combination there will always be ice. Our district made a little pact that the first person to fall would have to buy everyone else a candyvar. I was walking really well and think that I would be okay and that I would never fall this winter. I was thinking about how good I was doing and then the next thing I know I was wet. Why? might you ask. I'll tell you why. I was walking and it was raining which was making the ice already down start to melt and become slick, admist my thinking about how good I was, I slipped and fell. It was a surprise! I quickly jumped back up and "limped" back home. I thought that I would never ever fall and then the next thing I knew I was on the ground. Lame. So now I owe my district candy bars. happens to everyone right? I hope so.

The other day Elder Duke and I made so chili/soup. We found some dry beans and vegetables and thought of making some chili because it's starting to get cold and why not make something that would keep us warm. We weren't sure on how to make the beans, come to find out you need a really long time to boil them and then they'll be ready. After a long process of cooking the beans we made the chili/soup. It contains some red peppers, tomatoes, celery, onion, beans of course, ground beef, and some random spices that we found. So now we have a big pot of chili/soup that is just chilling in our fridge. It will probably last us all this week and some of next week. It's probably the most healthiest thing that I'll ever eat here because it has veggies and what not. Crazy, with all of the protein from the beans and the overload of veggies it's making my bowels do some funny things, like fart, fart some really really stinking ones too. But that's not important. It's a good chili/soup.....hopefully I don't get sick of it too soon because it is really going to last us a really long time.

We are teaching some people....some. It's brutal. With the weather not being Chirstlike it's difficult to contact, but nonethe less we go and teach. We teach a progressing investigator who has set a baptism date. Januarary 8th. It's going to be a lot of work to get her there but she can do it and I know that we can help her get there. She' been taking the lessons for quite a while but "goes away" so she has to start over, so that's what I've heard. But we are going to work with her. She has some of the best fellowshippers ever, so it's going to be amazing. We have the Branch President coming with us for a lesson so it's going to be good. Hopefully it will all work out and we will get her to be baptized. We tried calling other people last night to set up some times to teach this week but that didn't work out too well. They all said to call them after the new year....I wonder why.

We are trying to teach this one guy, Oleg, but he is always working at some temporary job placement place and they call him like the night before or just a couple of hours to see if he can work and if he says no then he's pretty much out of a job for a really really long time and has no money, so he always says yes. Hopefully soon we'll be able to meet up with him and teach him. I've only taught him once since I've been here. Yeah a really long time ago. Hopefully something will happen. We tried calling this one contact that we received on the street but his phone was weird, it was like :We are not accepting phone calls now, and then it would send a text saying okay call me. But then it wouldn't accept the phone call. So...lame. But hopefully we'll find some more people to teach.

That was my week, a good fun time. This week is going to be awesome because it's going to be Christmas!!! I'm excited for that. I haven't opened any of the presents because if I wait then I'll be able to open more on Chirstmas! I did how ever open it and see what was in there, I took out the socks-which were amazing-and wore those. How great that feeling was. Warm feet is the best thing ever. This week should be a good week. The ZL's are going up to Sumii to conduct some baptism interviews, if I can remember 6 interviews, and there's only two elders in Sumii. They are doing work. There is usually four but one elder had to go home because of his tonsils were acting up and they are going to take them out. So they sent his companion down to Donetsk, those two elders there are doing work. I got to meet them during the Christmas party and they stayed at our house for the night too. They are really cool elders doing work.

The last email I sent home I remember including that there's rumor that we don't have enough money, but to be honest I think that we do. It's fine. Three hundred grevian is pretty good, well I think so. I haven't had to go into person money yet, but this last week was close on money. I had to buy some papers that said that I was legal to live in Ukraine and I spent two hundred from my personal and one hundred from MSF to buy a CD player which was the best thing ever. That was a good purchase. And then I had to buy those papers for one hundred and fifty grevian and then I spent about one hundred grevian on groceries so I was pretty low on cash by the end of the week, but now I get to start all over. It's do-able but it's close. It will be okay. I don't think that I'll need to buy some boots. I asked an older missionary who goes home in Feburary if he ever bought some boots, he never did and was fine. Elder Duke has some boots but they aren't waterproof and his feet are always cold so he says. So......I'm going to stay with my shoes, they seem to be doing fine and keeping me alright. If I do take out some money it will be for some ties or some warm clothing like a sweater. So yeah it's all good.

Oh the time of Christmas is amazing. I love it. I'm really excited to be here for Christmas and to be here with my "family". It feels good to be here, I'm surrounded by good Elders and doing the Lord's work, what could be better? The other day I found myself being a little down and then the next thing I found myself doing was singing to myself the primary song Army of Helaman. When I was done I was pumped and ready to go. It brought a smile to my face, a warm feeling inside and the want to go to work and work work. The Lord is with His missionaries, I know it. Have a good Christmas everyone I love you all and thank you for what you have done for me in my life. Remember what it's all about GIVING!!!!

Love Elder Young

If you want a story here's a story. The other day it was snowing/raining and when we were walking back to our house we saw a dog. It was freaking out, like wigging out of control. It was pyscho. It would like freak itself out and then jump back. Then all of a sudden it went stiff and laid down. It's legs were all out stiff and shaking. It was super sketchy. We think that it was rabid and that it died just then. Yeah super freaky. Anywho I'm safe, not rabid! yay!!

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Cold Mountain Letter 3

So this week has been really good so to say. Last P-day we went bowling after we did internet stuff. That was a lot of fun. We bowled two games and both time I bowled over 110, yes without bumpers! Boo yah! That was a lot of fun. We found a McDonalds and had some lunch. We went to a church to watch the Joseph Smith full length feature film. It was great to watch a church movie in ENGLISH with other missionaries. After that we went home and did our studies and then went to bed. Seems kind of like a lame day but it was a lot of fun, I like being around other missionaries and seeing how they are doing.

Tuesday was great because we got our MONEY!!!! After all of the troubles with our card we finally got our money. Now I'm loaded. I have 300 greavian a week which about like under $50. Yeah seems like it's not enough but we've been getting by. Some of the other missionaries are complaning that we are not getting enough money and that it's hard to survive with how much we have. Some missionaries went through and figured out if we ate this and ate that and did this and went there and came back that we would be about 250 greavian off of what we have to need. But Elder Duke and I are doing pretty well. We have food in the fridge and in the cupboards. So I don't know what the other missionaries are freaking out about but hey if we get more money that would be great because then we could eat a bit more better than rice, noodles, and what ever else we can find for cheap. But eh what ever.

We had lined up two lessons that day for the night (Tuesday). We went to this one guys house, he's pretty legit. He is in the District Presidency around here, which is a big deal. We went to his house and taught him about prayer and how great it is. After that great lesson we went to the church to try and teach the guy who asks the random questions, Sergai. We went to the church and waited and waited and then waited some more. He never showed up. Which was lame. The church is about 40 minutes away from home. So it's a big deal to go there for a lesson, so we went home. Before we went to bed we got a text from him that said that he forgot and that we will connect with him later and try to teach again. Hopefully..... so that was our day.

Wednesday was supposed to be a good day. By the looks of our planner it was going to be great busy day with three lessons. We went to the first, Sister Arena the crazy lady that forgets everything, we went there. It was always interesting. I didn't like the lesson too much because it was hard for me to comprehend what was going on. I felt like crying and giving up and not doing it anymore. I knew that is what Satan wants but I said a little prayer for strength to get through the lesson and to shake it off and to step up, meaning to grow from it. It was brutal but I got through it. We finished the lesson and went to the bus stop. As we were waiting our phone rang, it was our second lesson calling to let us know that she wouldn't be able to make it because she was sick. So that was a bummer. We then went home. We were home for some time and our phone rang again and it was our third lesson also telling us that she wouldn't be able to make it. Great :( that was a heart break right there.

It was bad, so what were we supposed to do??? Contacting of course!! We were walking around and I say to passerby's "Can I talk to you about God and Jesus Christ?" They promptly continue walking by like they never saw me. I swear, missionaries have an amazing capability to turn invisible. People just keep on walking by us when we talk to them. However some people see us. Guess who though??? The crazy people and the drunk people see us and some normal people. Serious. We talked to this one guy who was drunk, he gave us some candy and we talked to him. He kept on asking Elder Duke what his first name was, I think he asked like three times. He also told us that he was Armenian a couple of times. Before we left he gave Elder Duke a nice drunk kiss on the neck. Oh how precious! We kept on going looking for other people. After some time we found another guy, who wasn't drunk. I contacted into him in Russian but then he cut into English, which was nice. He said that he was an Atheist because he went to the University and believed that it just happened and that there isn't any Divine Intervention. I couldn't really hear him because of the traffic. I really wanted to talk to him more because I too have felt that way with my studies, what to believe. But before I could talk to him some homeless bum drunk lady came up and started talking to us. We all kind of looked at each other, Elder Duke and I and the guy, and laughed. Yeah it was funny. She whispered something into his ear a little bit loud enough for Elder Duke to hear. The guy was disgusted and said to her to leave. That kind of killed the situation and then we all just left. As we were walking away she chased us down and tried talking to us. We acknowledged her but just kept on walking. We got to a street corner and then decided to turn back. Which meant that we would have to face the drunk crazy lady again. When we got close we just put our heads down and walked really really fast past her. Which worked. Contacting brings out the crazies of the world.

Thursday was a good day. We made our way to a lesson but we were a little bit too early so Elder Duke said to me, find a DOM (apartment riser) and lets go tract it. I was optomistic thinking that we would be able to find someone. We went to the top floor and worked down. Elder Duke rang the door bells. Either people would talk through the door and say that they weren't interested or they would either open door but then promptly close it. Some old guy opened the door and then saw us was completely disgusted and closed the door. Some drunk lady opened her door and said to go away. That was funny. Another guy opened up his door. He was only wearing boxer bottoms. His house smelt so freaking good but he told us to talk quiet and then he said to go away. That was a bummer, he looked like the Michael on the British version of "The Office". That made me laugh but then that was it.

We finished tracting the DOM and then went to our lesson. It went well. She was an inactive and hopefully she'll come back to church. We just talked about the love of God and next time we're going to talk about the Holy Ghost and how that God and Jesus want you to come back and renew your convenants that you made at baptism. Hopefully she'll come back to church. We went to another lesson that night. She has been an investigator that has been close to baptism but hasn't fully commited. But this time she was like "alright I want to get baptized and really do everything this time" That was awesome!! Hopefully she'll get baptized for reals and not back out. So I could attend my first baptism in my first transfer. That would be so legit. So that was that day. A good day.

Friday we had no lessons planned at all and the joke for the day was "How are we going to do what we need to get done today!!??? We have some much to do." So we did our weekly planning for an hour and then headed out. We came back and had lunch/dinner. Elder Duke found some inactives to go to and see if we could teach them. We found three and planned our route and then headed out. The first lady we went to we knocked on her door. She came to the door and talked through the door. She asked who was there, we said the missionaries, and then she walked away from the door and went back to her activities. So we looked at each other dumbfounded and then left her house for the second place. We asked some people for directions on how to get there, people here are really helpfull with directions. That's pretty cool. So next time we might look confused I might ask someone "Hey do you know how to return back to God?" and see what happens. But we got to the second house. It was scary none the less. I'll give you the pieces and see if you can make the pieces fit. German Shepard dog, angry middle aged man, snow, and cold night. Hope the pieces fit!!! Then the third house we called the family-mother and daughter are the inactives-but the father answered the phone, wasted drunk. He said that they weren't home and so we just went home. It was time to go home anyway. So yeah, that's Ukraine for you.

Saturday was really busy. We had two lessons. We had one with the crazy old lady who forgets. This time it went really well for me. I didn't feel like crying at all and I just laughed inside when everthing was happening. I was glad that my little prayer was answered and that all was well. She thinks that we go to her to get help with our Russian. So she is alwasy correcting us, which is helpful but weird. Then she also weirds out and says that she's an investigator that we found on the street and to teach her for five minutes. That is different. She also made us do a forced role play with talking about the Bible and the Book of Mormon. That didn't work so well. Oh before I forget before our lesson there were some people in the stairwell talking a little loud. She went out and said that they needed to be quiet because we are talking about holy things. It was really funny. Our second lesson was cold because we were outside. It was with Elia, we don't meet in her house just in front of it. Either way it was good. I tried to tell some principle about faith but with my limited Russian I made it through with the aide of some actions. It was really good actually. After the lesson we made our way to the Senior Missionaries home for the district dinner/meeting. It was fabulous. They served us chili which was amazing. Elder Duke and I wanted to make our own chili but we weren't sure on how to cook beans, so we called Sister Burr to see how and she told us that we have to soak them and then boil them for a really long time. So we just bailed on that idea and just ate their chili. But this week we are going to try and make our own chili. That was Saturday. A good missionary day.

Sunday is always the best day of the week. Church is just amazing. I was supposed to play the piano but we only got there like 5 minutes to get there becase it's been snowing and we left our house a bit late. So we got there and then I sat down at the piano. I had to pick out some hymns but I don't know which hymn is which. So I picked out some hymns and then the meeting started. I managed to play the first hymn alright. I played mostly just the right hand and occasionaly the left hand. It wasn't the best thing ever but it worked. I was going to play the Sacrament hymn and then the other elders walked in. One of them plays the piano really well, so before I started to play I was told to wait and that he would come up and play. It was an awkward exchange but it worked.....I ended up leading the music for the rest of the meeting. So that was music.

There was this little kid that sat next to me, little as in like 12 years old. He loves the missionaries. He was like let me see your planner and let's draw, I was like no, I need to listen and so do you! He instead just went to sleep on my shoulder. It was funny. Sunday School and Priesthood was good as well. After church we talked for a while and laughed. We got word that the First Presidency Christmas Message was going to be broadcasted to our church. But it was going to be in Russian. We had this idea to go to the Senior Couples home and watch it there. The plan went through and we watched it over there in English!!! It was amazing! I loved it! During one of the songs, one of the other elders saw his older brother singing in the chior and then they showed some members of the orchestra, guess who I saw. Sarah McQueen, from school. That was legit. What a small world. That was like the best night ever.

It started to snow again. So now there's a good amount of snow on the ground, not a lot but enough. Going to senior missionaries house and watching that devotional was the best thing ever. It got me pumped to go about doing good for others and helping others out. I feel like my physical/spiritual batteries got recharged so now I'm ready to work and go to town being a missionary. I got this thought during the devotional "This is what I need to do and this is where I need to be" I know that that it wasn't my thought but a thought from the Holy Ghost from Heavenly Father. It was amazing. Christmas is going to be amazing here! I'm so excited.

So that was my week. Just the typical Ukrainian week for missionaires. It's been fun and I'm looking forward to the rest of this week. Elder Duke and I will for certain figure out some times that work out for the Christmas calls. Have a great a merry Christmas this year. That's the's Christmas in the air!!!

Remember the true meaning of Christmas and help other people. I love you!!

Elder Frank Young

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Cold Mountain Letter 2

This past week was pretty awesome not gonna lie. Today when I looked out at the temperature gauge it read -5 degrees C. Yeah how cool...err cold is that!??!! Yeah so cool to be here. Cold I mean. Wednesday and Thursday were some really really cold days, try like -10 to -15 degress C. Yeah, that's cold and uncomfortable but nonetheless we went out and did some work.

We played some SPORTS last Monday, we played some soccer and some football. How great it was to run around and to play again. At the MTC it was always volleyball aka standing, or basketball aka jogging in spot, or running aka weaving in between people. But here it was really nice to run and play and to not have any worries. I think that there were about 30 or so missionaries there, which made it fun because we could talk to everyone and see what they are up to.

Getting there was something else. I really feel like I'm walking in a video game. Like a WWII or some Cold War video game. The tall communistic buildings are everywhere. The cold dark cement is everywhere. The trees have no life. Everyone is wearing dark colors. It's so like a video game which is cool in it's own sense. We walked around aimlessly trying to find a field, it felt like a patrol of Elders going to war against the evil of the world. Seriously though it's like a video game. We ended up at a turf field in the middle of nowhere surrounded by communist looking block apartments. We played till our hearts content. We went to MicD's aka McDonald's for lunch that was pretty good, "American" food for once.

We’re still having some problems with our credit card trying to get our MSF off so I think for the past couple of days we've been living off of like 20 US dollars. I'm here to tell you that I'm alive and that there is food. Hopefully soon we'll be able to get our credit card worked out so that we have money. But don't worry, President Fry told us that we are going to have some money so that we won't go with out.

You all must be dyeing to know who we are teaching. We are teaching a fellow, Oleg, he's been working with the senior missionaries and trying to figure out a job and trying to get his life back in order. It's way cool he's making some progress with them. So we taught him about Prophets and what they do and how important they are to us. One of the best things about teaching him is that it's in English!!! WOOT!!! He thinks that everything is really cool and interesting. We should invite him to be baptized soon, hopefully that would be amazing!!! We meet with him at the Church in Center. Oleg though could totally be baptized though.

We are teaching another investigator, Sergai, he asks some of the most random questions ever. We were teaching about, in Russian, the Plan of Salvation and then out of the blue he asks how many people live in America. He asked some really random questions. Hopefully he'll stop asking some random questions and he'll focus on how awesome the Gospel is. Maybe we will extend an invitation to him for baptism but I don't know for sure.

We are visiting some members. Elia-the young girl. We went to her on Saturday, the day was foggy and there was moisture in the air. We don't meet inside of her house because her parents don't like the church, so much which isn't cool, so we meet in front of her house and teach. It started to rain and so we went to some covered area of her house. Her house is falling apart or just not completed and well…I don't know. Maybe I'll take a picture of it and show you. It's a really humble place nonetheless. Elia has a really strong testimony of the gospel, which is so wicked awesome.

We went to another lady of the ward, Sister Erina, roll the 'r', she's an older lady who is slightly crazy, meaning that she has memory loss. On Sunday she couldn't remember if we taught her or not during the week. When we went to her house we sat in her kitchen. It was about the size of the kitchen bathroom back home. The sink would be the oven and sink, and the toilet would be the fridge. It was really small, but awesome. The three sat there and we taught to the light of a desk lamp. We were going to teach about the Plan of Salvation and part way through the lesson she was like whoa! What are you teaching me?! We explained what we would be teaching before we started, but she must have forgotten. She then said why are you teaching me this, act like I'm an investigator on the street and you only have five minutes to teach me. Tell me something really quick about commandments. It was something else. I would just look at Elder Duke and smile a laugh. That was an experience.

We taught another member couple. They are awesome. They live if some old building, not a block building but a one level long row of connected houses. Everything they had was basically in one room. We walked in and they had a mud room where some other things were kept and then walked into their bedroom/kitchen/living room/dining room/everything room. It was warm and nice. On the walls they had pictures of Christ and the Kiev Temple. They had a TV and the brother plugged in his camera to the TV and promptly showed us all of his pictures from his camera. There were some really cool photos of when they went to the Temple. I miss going to the temple. The Kiev Temple is amazingly awesome and so pretty. So after he showed us some of his photos we talked about the Atonement. We usually go there to teach an investigator but she "ran away" so we taught them. After teaching them they gave us a homemade jar of fruit jam and some fake coffee stuff. They are awesome great people. I love them. The brother walked with us back to the Trambai stop and waited with us till the trambai came. He's so cool.

So yeah those are the people we are teaching. We tried to go to some inactive peoples houses but none of them answered their doors. But Elder Duke mapped out some more inactives so we got some work to do this week.

Contacting is a lot of fun, well for me it is. I get to go up to random people and talk to them. About 90% of them say no I don't want to talk and that just makes me smile because I just talked to a random person about the gospel. It just makes me happy to talk to random people and get rejected. As odd as that sounds to you all it's a fun game for me. I have some fliers, and on the cover Jesus is with some little children and inside is the Proclamation to the Family and the Living Christ. I have a couple in my hands and when I walk by some people I hand it out and say "take this please." Most of the people don't take them but some do. It's cool, planting gospel seeds.

I think this past week we gave out a Book of Mormon and the other day walking around we saw the lady we gave to BOM to. We tried talking to her but she just blew us off like she didn't remember us. But when we gave her the BOM she was like oh sweet a gift for me?!! Hopefully we'll run into her again and we'll be able to talk to her about the book. Contacting is a game. My teachers said that finding is an attitude. You gotta have the right attitude to find the people. I know that the people are ready for the gospel they just don't know that they are.

We talked to a guy that we contacted into for a while. He was pretty legit, we gave him a brochure about the Restoration, hopefully he calls us and he'll become an investigator. If by chance someone does stop to talk to you they usually listen to what you have to say. Which is nice. But when I say can we talk to you about God or Jesus Christ they just say no and keep on walking. How sad it is for them to not talk about the Men who have blessed their lives so much. SO yeah that's contacting for you here in Ukraine. Last night it snowed it will make contacting even harder because people will be like no it's cold I don't want to talk. Anywho I think contacting is fun.

I've talked to some other elders here and they say that it gets wicked cold and there's nothing you can do about it do stay warm. I've been wearing a long sleeve shirt, a sweater, and a coat sometimes when we go out. I also wear a scarf, a beanie, and some half mitten/gloves. I stay warm for the most part. My toes however freeze. I found the other day in our apartment an older liner to a jacket, which keeps me warm. I wear it around the apartment to keep warm and sometimes I wear it outside to keep warmer. Yet it’s still cold. I need to find a small coat that is windproof and wear it underneath my big black pea coat. If I can do that then all should be good and I'll be warm. Everyone said that there's nothing that you can really do to stay warm. Come spring if I'm still alive I'll be grateful for the good weather.

So yeah that’s my week from memory. Thanks for everything you all have done. Letters still make it to Ukraine. I still have yet to find a post office so I can mail home some letters. Thank you all for everything. I can feel the love and the blessings from those that send it my way. But yeah seriously though to everyone thanks for everything. I'm going to try and upload some picutres.

I have some Kinder chocolate. Right after I bought the chocolate I saw the Kinder Eggs, but next time I'll get some Eggs. The bread here is good. I like it. It seems like the food is cheap but we only have roughly 300 Grevien a week to live off. So hopefully we'll be able to make things work.

There are some crazies here. On the trambai the other day there was a grandma reading aloud some old paper, yeah it was werid. I saw some old homeless old guy walking into the subway saying something and then he just walked through for free onto the Metro. There was another crazy guy at church the other day. I think that there are more crazy's here in Ukraine than in USA.

Enjoy the Christmas season and help someone else out in the day at least twice. Remember the spirit of CHRISTmas.


Elder Young

P.S. - Oh yeah something else that happened this week. We caught two mice in our apartment.