Monday, November 7, 2011

Donboss/Gorlavka Letter 1


So yes I got transferred. This past transfer was a 7 weeker instead of a 6 weeker. I'm not sure why but that is what I know. Some elders got delayed and that is true. I only knew that they went to Arizona..but still that stinks that they are having some visa troubles. I heard from other missionaries, so I'm not sure how accurate the information is, but that Ukraine has made it really hard for others to get visas. There was some court case between the church and Ukraine so that the church could send missionaries here on two year visas so they don't have to send us to Bulgaria. The church won and got two year religious visas but Ukraine doesn't have religious visas anymore....so that is probably why some of the elders are stuck back in the states. My group that got back from Bulgaria we all have different visas from everybody else. I've looked at it for a while and there are some differences about it. I think that I have up to 7 re-entries...so maybe I have to leave every now and then so my visa renews because it also says something about 90 days. It's kind of crazy to think about and figure out what the mission is gonna do, it could end up like Russia and we have to leave all the time. That wouldn't be too much fun.
 
So I guess you would like to know what is up and what is going on. I'm now down in the Donboss. My feelings are a little bit indifferent about it because Kharkov is just amazing. Oh well beggars can't be choosers. The bus ride down wasn't so bad as I thought and remembered it being. We had a big bus because we had about 10 people coming down with luggage and then some others coming down for a counsel. We talked and laughed the whole way down. Then eventually we got to the office building and had some time to talk with other Elders and then we had transfer meeting. During the time before I was able to talk with Elder Pulsipher. He is doing good and it was great to talk with him. We shared some laughs and talked about what could happen. For transfers you have no clue what could happen and who could go where. So it freaks you out. . Eventually transfer meeting happened and we all found out where we are going. President Compero had us all stand up and stand next to the wall and then when you found out where you are going you go sit down. They announced Kharkov first and then the Donboss. Eventually people were sitting down and then I was one of six people left. It got a bit scary because of what could happen and where I could go. I was relieved because there was a buddy still left and we thought that we could be serving together. His name is Elder Rooney, I'll talk more about him later. So then eventually my name is called and I go sit down. I'm serving in a small satellite city called Gorlavka. I was told that the work is a bit dead and there really isn't much going on. Yay!!! Not a lot of people want to serve over here...I'm one of the few and the proud to get the honour to serve here. Boo ya!!! We loaded up a bus and then drove the hour or so out here to the great thriving metropolis of Gorlavka and found my apartment and unpacked. My companion is Elder Harris from Davis area..well that is where he went to high school. He's only in his third transfer, so I'm weaning him as we call it in the mission. His Russian is amazing, they are doing a new teaching method in the MTC and they pretty much come out fluent. It's gonna be a good transfer. I'm following him around for the first part because I have no clue what is going on. I'm picking up more and more about the area and it's alright. We are in the center of the city which is nice. We had TV church on Sunday because there was a broadcast from SLC with Elders Oaks, Uchtdorf and Whitney Clayton and Sister Thompson. It was a good session, they talked about having a temple recomend and paying a full tithe and serving missions and having a temple mission. The leaders weren't so easy with how they said things because it was pretty straight forward and called the members to better action, but it's good for them.
 
Gorlavka is going to be pretty interesting because there are only six elders out here. My zone leaders are Elder Duke and his comp Elder Zsemberry. Yes the same Duke that trained me about a year ago. It's pretty cool being around him a year ago and seeing the progression that I have made since then. Then there is me and Elder Harris and the other elders are Elder Rooney and Elder Frandsen. Rooney was trained by Elder Pulsipher and is just a chill good funny kid. We already know each other by association and have had a few chances to talk with one another. I'm excited to serve around him and get to know him better. He'll be a good friend after the mission. Mission life is going great, I'm still District Leader over here and doing the normal things. I think that I'm getting set up to train next transfer, that's a bit scary...kind of. We'll just have to wait and see what really happens.
 
I can't believe that time is really moving by so quickly. Elder Rooney is in his fourth transfer and that is when I was with Elder Pulsipher and now I'm in my ninth transfer. I only have about six more to go and then it's home. It's crazy to think that the mission is going to end. Life out here is a lot different from back home. I'm grateful to be out here and working hard and having struggles with the people, life and the Russian language. Thank you for your prayers and all that you have all done for me. I love you a lot.
 
Love Elder Frank Young

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