March 31, 2010 Russia

Dear Fam,
This week has been pretty crazy.  Just getting settled into things has been a challenge– me getting back late in the week, having a lot of things new responsibilities to take care of and get used to, a lack of weekly planning, a sick companion, etc made the beginning of the week rather challenging.  Sunday night things were pretty tough– all our meetings were falling through and it didn’t seem like we’d have anyone to meet with for a while.  Plus, we just got home and realized that we left the fax machine that we were supposed to take to our apartment at the branch building.  So we knew we had to go back that night.  Before going back we mentioned that we should probably try to talk to as many people on the way back to invite them to hear our message.  In discussing how and what we would talk about with people I became concerned with being able to understand better and be able to skillfully share the “Family: a proclamation to the world.”  We talked about ways that we could approach families on buses in a not-awkward way.  We focused our discussion on “what if we ran into a father on the bus” and we discussed things that a father would be open to hearing and what he’d be interested in knowing more of, as far as what we as missionaries could teach him.  After a very productive companionship discussion/brainstorm we headed out to the bus stop.  When the bus slid to a stop and we walked on,  I immediately saw a young father with his small daughter sitting next to him.  He had bag on the seat next to him, which he moved as we got onto the bus.  I decided to go for it.  I sat down next to him and started talking with him and his daughter.  I showed them a picture of my family and started having a very positive conversation with them about families and how they are the most important thing that we have.  The conversation went exactly as Elder Brightwell and I had imagined that a “perfect family conversation” could go.
Hopefully we’ll be able to meet with this great guy and his family soon, but even if we don’t– the experience was a very important one for me after having a long discouraging day.  After that things have turned around and we were able to somehow find several people that were excited to meet with us.  Plus, members have been more enthusiastic about missionary work– just coming up to us and telling us “I’ll be here at the branch building every tuesday for two hours and I’ll be happy to help you with any meetings you may want to schedule for that time.”  I think sometimes in life it’s just a matter of endurance.  Sometimes we just need to hold on to what we know is right and continue to do our best, despite how things are working out, and just hold on.  Life always has a way of turning around and getting better.
Thanks for the emails.  Yes, people here are talking about the Moscow bombings too, although I know very little about it since we can’t watch tv.  Things are going great. The weather is getting warmer.
Justin Geldzahler– a “Happy Birthday” was missed in the letter last week, yes?  Also, I sent you some pieces of paper with writing on it today.
Sean– send me some pics of your DC pad 🙂
Justin Trapp– Yeah! I heard about your sisters wedding from…. who was it, Taegan, probably.  Wild!  I still feel very left out details-wise.  And my Russian is getting to some sort of a comfortable point.  Sometimes I understand everything and can speak awesomely and feel great.  Other times I find myself in situations where I feel like I still have a long ways to go.  It’s a tricky language sometimes.  But things are great! I’m loving the mission, and was excited to get an email from you.  After the mission thus far I plan on going back to New York for the rest of my schooling– 4 years and then I have no clue.  It’ll be great to see eachother when I get back. My spanish is so slaughtered right now.  Sometimes I try to remember how to say things in spanish and it takes me forever to piece toether a cohearant sentence.
Bradley Weber:  Roman Diev started coming back to church on his own, about a week after you sent me that email.  I hadn’t gotten in touch with him yet, and I wasnt at church that first Sunday that he came, but I told the other Elders about how I needed to meet the guy and they told me when I got back from Kemerovo that he showed up on his own to church.  He split up with his wife at least temporarily and he says that his wife was holding him back from coming to church each week.  He’s meeting with us missionaires and he’s staying active.  He’s already come to church 3 times in a row!  Also, Brat Boris and I have been talking about you a bit– he says hi and something about not being able to get in touch with you on facebook.  Anyway, you are very loved here and I just wanted to let you know how things were going with Roman.
Alright, well i’m out of time.
love you guys!  maybe next week i’ll have a more coherant email.
–elder Froelich
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