Friday, July 24, 2015

July 13, 2015

Hey guys! 

So this week was pretty good. On Monday we made cookies for our zone training. Then we had a lesson in the park with two Afghanistan ladies. It went pretty good but the one just didn't understand how we are any different from Muslims (which they are). We told her about how we have the priesthood which is the Authority to act in God’s name and that Jesus was not a prophet, He is our Savior. But she didn't get it. Then we got rudely interrupted by a drunk guy and they said they had to go. Then we invited the drunken guy to church and he said he would come but he didn't. Then we went and picked up some Chinese food and went to the Kramer’s today to help him do service. We mowed his lawn and I weed wacked. I got two blisters on my finger from pulling it over. Guess it's been to long since I have started anything. 
An office selfie
Tuesday, we had zone training. I saw a kid there that I met through Anderson my last companion and this is his last transfer. It's sad to see him go. For zone training we had some good little talks and then watched Joseph Smith, The Restoration. It was good. Then we got subway and went back to Hagen for English class. We were in Dortmund for zone training. English class went well. I think we are helping Daniel learn a little more English. 

On Wednesday, we had an appointment with Eve again. It went pretty good. She is in a tricky situation, so I don't know when she will be able to get baptized. After teaching Eve, I went to another town on a split with Elder Morris. We went by on a guy who wasn't home and then went to a new member they know. We had a good lesson about being thankful. There is a Mormon message about it that we watched. This guy that we were teaching, however, is such a good inspiration. He receives money every month from the government and he sends it to his family so his sister can go to school. He also didn't take a job because it would keep him from going to church. He is such a great guy. He tells us that he will never beg for food or money because he has two hands and can work. He had a little plate of pennies and he said that is all he had for the month. It made me realize how grateful I am for growing up in such good conditions and with such great parents. There is a lot I have taken for granted in my life, but it makes me realize we should be thankful for everything we have. 
Our plan of salvation drawing in the park.
On Thursday, we split back and Elder Frickey and I did studies and went to institute. We met a girl there from Massachusetts. It's weird how many different people you meet on the mission.

Friday, we did our weekly planning and then went to Lüdensheid to do some work. We went and talked with a dude we gave a Book of Mormon to our first week together. He said that he reads it occasionally and enjoys it. He told us we could come back next Friday and tell him a history back ground of the book. I am so happy. He also told us he has a lot of work to do around the house so I told him when he needs help we can come back and help him too and he seemed very surprised and interested. I hope he calls us. I love doing service. 

So Saturday we went to Burger King for lunch. Yes they have those in Germany. Then we went by on less actives and didn't see too much success.  One lady told us to come back by though which is awesome. Then we were headed to Brother Kramer’s because he has us over every Saturday and we had some time afterwards so we went by on a family called Niggemeyer. We rang the door bell and the guy answered, recognized us and told us that he would have time to meet on Sunday next week. We literally said nothing and he made an appointment. Haha. It was awesome. So we have a bit to do next week. Also, on Sunday we had a guy named Mathias show up. He was a referral from another area. He seemed to enjoy it and he had brought a friend with him. Hopefully they will come next week. Then we got invited over to Brother Kramer’s son’s house for lunch. He is less active.  He fed us ribs and potatoes. It was good. He is a good kid and he told us that he doesn't know why but he always feels good after he talks to us. I am glad that we can be doing the Lords work. It is so much fun.
Elder Crittenden with our drawing
So our mini missionary was from Mülheim his parents are members and he likes soccer. That's pretty much all I got out of him. I heard you guys are planning on taking family pictures at the cabin. Are you going to get a cut out me and include me? Yes, we do have three meetings here, first Priesthood, then Sunday School and then Sacrament. I understand a lot better in Sacrament. One kid gave a talk on the gospel of Jesus Christ and this was his first Sunday at church after his mission. Then our bishop got up and gave a talk about how cell phones are good for scriptures and stuff but we shouldn't be using them in the sacrament. There are a lot of people who use them so he was getting a little mad about it.  I have no clue how long I am going to be in Hagen or with Elder Frickey. We find out in two more weeks.

I love you all so much have a good week! 


Thursday, July 23, 2015

July 6, 2015

Hey family!

This week we had our mini missionary as I told you! He is 16 and is from Mülheim and his name is Yannick Schwarte. He was really quiet but pretty cool.   Monday we went and did shopping and all that, then we went to the park and played soccer. That was fun. Some little Turkish kids came over and tried playing football with us. I bought an American football and it was too big for the kid’s hands. It's kind of sad how many kids here can't catch and throw. Haha.  We were at the church on Monday too and Brother Kramer showed up with some other guy and they were having a root beer deal. They went out to the parking lot and this guy had 148 cans of root beer he loaded into Brother Kramer’s car and then Brother Kramer paid him and they left. Haha. It was hilarious.
Elder Frickey and Elder Schwarte and me
out doing doors

Then on Tuesday we did our studies and then did some doors before we went to an appointment we had set up with Eve. Not too many people answered their doors and lots were not interested, but it was good. Then we went and taught Eve about the Gospel of Jesus Christ.  It was really good and we had our mini missionary talk some too. After our appointment, we came back and made another corner board for the street. It was the same as last time minus the answer on the bottom that the random guy added haha. We met some black people, who spoke English, while doing our street board. It was really good. And we invited them to church. Hopefully they will come.

On Wednesday, we had district meetings and then Brother Kramer showed up and bought us Asian food.  Then after that we had a split. I had a missionary who has only been in Germany for a week and Yannick Schwarte. So I was completely in charge and we had to travel an hour to a member’s house for dinner. Got there perfect timing and we had dinner with them and shared a lesson. It was super good and fun. They are cool members. They are the Shadowski's.  After dinner, we got back to town and did some contacting. The new missionary Elder Flickinger was good at that. He was brand new so he would just say "es tut mir leid.  Wir sind Missionare von der Kirche Jesu Christi und wir teilen ein Botschaft über Jesus Christus." It was really funny because es tut mir leid, as mom knows, means I’m sorry. Haha he meant to say Entschuldigung which means excuse me. Anyways, we have an appointment today with a lady from Afghanistan so I guess it worked haha.  

On Thursday, we went to the soup kitchen and had a good time cutting meat. It was the first of the month so no one was there because they all got their government money. Then we did our studies and then we went to Dortmund for institute. That was good except I get the times confused and so we showed up 2 hours early. Darn military time! Oh and while we were at the soup kitchen a guy called us and asked if he could come by the church. So we met him and gave him a tour and a Book of Mormon. It was awesome. He is from Nigeria. So after institute, we came home and went to bed.
Cutting Vegetables at the soup kitchen
Then Friday we did weekly planning and then we went to the Kramer’s for an early dinner. It was good we had Yannick teach the lesson and it was super short but good. Then Brother Kramer’s wife and son showed up and brought a less active with them, so we ended up staying the whole rest of the day talking with them. It was good to get to know Brother Kramer’s wife a little better. She is funny and nice.

Saturday we went to Dortmund and played basketball and oh yeah, it was so hot this week. At Brother Kramer’s I was dying it was so hot. And after we played basketball, I just stayed sweaty until I took a shower at home. It was blazing. So after I kicked butt at basketball, we had a closing meeting for Yannicks Schwarte mini mission and then we went back to Hagen. Then we called people we needed to call, and did our studies. 

On Sunday they decided to have only sacrament because of the heat and lack of AC here. It was funny because on Sunday it was raining and not that hot. Elder Frickey and I had our suit coats on and I think everyone thought we were crazy because we didn't take them off. But it wasn't that hot. There was a guy preparing sacrament and he was just dripping, it was gross. I don't know how he got that sweaty. Haha. So that was a weird Sunday. And while it was going it got super dark outside and thunder was booming and it was just pouring. The new convert lady came to church and she recognized me finally haha.  Well, that was pretty much my week. 

I am glad you guys had a good time at Lake Louise. I didn't know grandma and grandpa and Michelle had never been to chucks new cabin. That's crazy. I am glad chucks family was up there and all the family pretty much. You should send me a video of grandpa and grandma telling stories. It's crazy to think how fast the mission has been flying by. I still have a long time left too. And for your talks, all I can think of is that it is really cool to think that Jesus died for us and he is not just some story book character he is actually resurrected and living. It's hard to grasp that sometimes but I think it is cool.
City Center in Hagen

So the street display we did last week didn't have a board we just had a table with Book of Mormons and other stuff we hand out and that was it. Oh and the balloons. That went good but we haven't heard back from anyone from that display.

Well have a good week everybody I love you all! 


Monday, July 20, 2015

June 29, 2105

Hey guys! 

This week was good we went to the Kleinert’s again on Monday and had dinner which was meat balls and potatoes. Then we went and taught a new member the 5th lesson. It was fun and good. We have taught the lady a few times and when I showed up she asked if I was new :( ,but it was all good. Tuesday, we went to a town called Kierspe again to give the Italian dude we talked to last week a Book of Mormon. He was playing a card game with his friends and acted like he had no time. After that, we went back shared a spiritual thought at young men and  young women’s and then grilled with them. They had some darn good bratwursts and things called fackeln. They are delicious. Then on Wednesday, we went and taught a lesson to the lady who can’t read or speak much German. She is from Romania I think and she speaks Hungarian. Then we did some doors with no success. But it was fun. 

Thursday we went to soup kitchen. It was good. What we normally do is get there around 8:30am and cut up meat that she has and then it goes into a soup later. Then we clean and sort vegetables and bread. They have big hard German bread and throw it in plastic crates to hand out. Then we have breakfast with everyone and then it is around 11:30am and we let the big crazy crowd of homeless people in. I go around and give them coffee and water and soup sometimes. They get really impatient sometimes, which is annoying because they are getting free food, but there are some really nice people.  After the soup kitchen, we had an appointment with an investigator but he wasn’t at home. It was funny, we were walking around the city center and we saw him and he was talking to someone so we walked down the street where he lives and pretended to look at stuff in a shop and then popped out when he was walking down the street and caught him. It was a sneak attack haha. Then we went home teaching with a guy from our ward.
Elder Frickey and our Mini Missionary
On Friday, we cleaned our apartment because we have a mini missionary.  He got here Sunday and is staying until Saturday! He is sixteen and from Mühlheim.  On Friday, we also had a street display. It went well. Not too many people from the ward showed up but it was good. I passed out a few Book of Mormon’s and balloons that say "Ich bin ein kind Gottes" which means I am a child of God. We did that from 10am till 1pm and then went to Bro Kramer’s and helped his son move apartments. We helped him until 10:30pm at night. It was a long day but really fun. I had to carry a fridge down these crazy German stairs. When they turn the corner the stair is big on the outside and small on the inside, like Kenny and Karen’s old spiral stair case. Then we went to church.  Elder Frickey gave a talk and then we went to Kramer’s for lunch. We had a bunch of meat and I was so stuffed. Then we went to Dortmund to get our mini missionary. So the end of this week has been a little crazy but it is good. The castle from last week was in Altena. It is apparently really old and is closed on Mondays. So we may go visit it sometime on another day. Bro Kramer said that he would take us to the Temple next month! I am super excited! It is closing in September for 2 years which stinks. If you guys can pick me up we wouldn’t be able to go through. :( 
Brother Kramer
That’s cool that the less active guy you know is allowing Brother Richardson to come over. I wish it didn’t take him almost dying to realize the church is true. I guess it is hard sometimes though. We did not hear back from the guy we gave the restoration pamphlet too. We went by but no one answered the door. The soup kitchen is good.  The main lady always asks if we have converted anyone yet and I told her 1,000 this week. She didn’t believe me... haha. 

I am here for another six weeks with Elder Frickey. That’s going to be 17 weeks together. Haha...  We have a family in the ward and their son just left on a mission a few weeks ago to the Alpine mission. That is southern Germany and Switzerland. They are a cool family and super nice. We went there for dinner and they gave us a bunch of ice cream. I have a picture of Brother Kramer and his son and I can send it in another email with the Ipad.

All is going good the language is coming along okay. It’s tough learning a new language. I haven’t eaten anything too strange lately. I can’t believe I am almost 7 months done!?! Well have a good week I love you all so much and if you want to send me a package with American food and other neat things, I wouldn’t say no! I am sending you guys one soon! I have it all wrapped up and ready to send! 

Well Love you all! 


Panoramic of our apartment

June 22, 2015

This is a 12th century Castle in Kierspe
called Burg Altena

Hey guys!

Wie geht's dir? 

So last week we went to Kramer’s after emails for service. We helped in his lawn picking weeds, and then he bought us some pasta. It was really good. After helping the Kramer’s, we went to a member’s house and had dinner. They made lasagna and we had lasagna the day before too. Haha.  Tuesday, we went on a split and Elder Frickey went to Unna. I stayed in Hagen with Elder Watts. It was good to see him again.  We had an appointment with an old couple from our ward. They are awesome and gave us pasta and stuff and then he gave us the German bible on the IPad because there are no apps for it. Don't know if it's legal but hope it is okay. We had English class with a kid named Daniel, but he is having a hard time with English.

We had district meetings on Wednesday and then Elder Frickey and I went to Kierspe which is another city in our area. It was cool and we found a guy who was kind of interested and gave us a free soda. We met a lady who said her son was interested in religion so we gave him a restoration pamphlet. Hopefully he will read it. On Thursday we went to the soup kitchen again which is always fun, except the people there are crazy haha. After we were done at the soup kitchen, we went by on a lady that Brother Kramer told us to go by and see. We did and she works at this cafe and she gave us apple juice and strawberry cake. It was cool. 

Friday, we went around Hagen on less actives. Saturday we went to the Kramer’s and we helped him make dinner for a missionary coming to visit him and his wife. Then we went to a priesthood meeting and I could understand a lot of what was going on! It was good.
Sunday we went to church and then went to the Langner’s house for dinner. This is the parents of the family whose house we Skyped from on Mother’s Day. They are funny. We have to wear house shoes there and they always feed us meat potatoes gravy and kraut, every time!!  It is great.  Then we taught their son’s girlfriend the first lesson. That was pretty much my week. 

Lenne River in Kierspe
It has been a little rainy here this week.  Our investigator guy didn't answer this week. And the IPads are staying in the mission so we don't have to buy them. That is awesome that the guy in your ward asked for a blessing. It is crazy how people fall away from the church but still know it's true. I am glad the guy is felling better and is talking to the home teacher now. Love you dad, HAPPY FATHERS DAY

Love Devin 

Saturday, July 18, 2015

June 15, 2015

Hey Family, 

This week has been good. On Monday we went to the Kleinert’s and had dinner and then a lesson. We got home around 8 pm, so we decided to go by on a past investigator and we met him at his door so he invited us in and we got to teach him a little. It was cool. I hope we can help him. 

Tuesday we had a zone conference in Dortmund. I had a good time seeing everyone and at the end we did get IPads. So yes, I am writing to you on one right now.  It was awesome seeing all my old pals from the MTC. Later that night we went on a split to Paderborn.  

Elder Homer and I went to an appointment on Wednesday with a member. She is an old lady who is just in love with us. She gave us some weird soup with bratwurst in it Haha. Then we went and contacted next to this river, I think it is called the Ruhr, and then we got some ice cream out of this sketchy van and then met back up with the other elders to split back. Elder Frickey and I spent some time walking around the college campus to find people but not a soul was there. We then made homemade mac and cheese for dinner and went to bed. 

Thursday we went to the soup kitchen again and cut meat and stuff to put into the pasta soup they were serving that day. It was fun. We went home had lunch and then our studies and then went to Brother Kramer’s because we had an appointment that we had made on Saturday. We had a bunch of meat they had grilled and we played some catch with his son. Don't worry I will try and get some pictures with them today. 

On Friday we weekly planned and then we contacted and looked for areas we could contact in the future. 

Saturday we did studies and had a lesson with the guy from Tuesday and it went pretty well. We read Alma 32 with him. I hope he keeps reading and we can help him with all his problems. 
After that, we went by on potential investigators.  We went to a member’s house from Sri Lanka. It was a good appointment but their food was a little spicy, but delicious. It was some kind of spring rolls and these weird Turkish spinach and meat things.  It was fun.

Sunday we went to church and had dinner with a member family after church. They made super good lasagna. I asked him about work and he has a worse commute than dad does. It is 5.5 hour drive to Nurnberg where grandpa and grandma where and he stays there all week and then drives back Friday night. It is crazy. I am sad I didn't get to see grandma and grandpa and Michelle. It was weird to think they were in the same country as me.  Do you know if they flew over the top of the world? I am pretty sure it was eight from Chicago for us.

Germany has not been too bad on the heat. No one here has air conditioning in their homes and not too many busses have it either. The trains do which is way nice. It hasn't been too hot here though. It's staying pretty cool. I had our English class friend try and pray in English and he said, "God heaven love" then the rest was in German haha. It was funny. Germany's been good the teacher guy never called back. When we taught the Brazilian lady it was good. Her cat was walking around everywhere and everyone was speaking German. It's still such a crazy language. I will try and take more pictures this week! To answer your questions, yes there are a ton of smokers, and Catholics and Evangelistic people. I haven't met too many atheists, however.   One thing that I think kept us a happy family is how you and mom always told us how much you loved us, even though I didn't play basketball and go to the NBA you still tell me you love me haha.  And I think that is important.  I have learned here that love is a big thing in the church. We need to show our love for others. I find it funny when we go to church here, we shake hands with almost every single member and then say goodbye to almost every single one. 

How is the Willow fire looking? Is our place and LaDaSa okay?  Hey Abby, I think my German speaking skills are getting a little better. Hallo wie geht's dir abby. Du bist ein sass Face. Haha ich hoffe du besser spüren werden. That's cool you got to talk about church with your friend. You should invite her sometime or give her a Book of Mormon.

Well that's all I have got for you. Can't wait to see you on Skye at Christmas either! 

Love you lots

Thursday, July 16, 2015

June 8, 2015

Dear Family,
 This week has been kind of slow.  On Tuesday, the day grandma, grandpa and Michelle got to the country; I went to Unna and had a split with Elder Morris. He is from Utah. He and I rode back to Hagen on the train and then we caught a bus out to the other Kleinert’s house and went and had lunch with them and talked to them about Preach My Gospel. It went pretty well. Preach My Gospel is really a good book and you guys should study it with the scriptures. It has a lot of different ways we can better ourselves. Like chapter 6 “Christ like attributes”. I really like that one.

After that we went to the Church and had English class. It went good also. It is hard teaching English to people who don’t know it. After that, Elder Morris and I walked around the city doing some contacting and then went home and had dinner.

The next day we had a district meeting and then went and got Dönners together. Then I went on a split with Elder Strong from Arizona and we went to Ludenscheid, which is in our area, to go by on less actives members. We went by on some different people and met with a guy in an old folk’s type home.  It was super weird and awkward. He didn’t want to talk with us so we kept trying to talk to him and yeah it got super awkward and finally we left and he told us not to come back.  It was kind of sad.
On the way to Ludenscheid, however, I started talking to a guy who is a school teacher in Hagen. He was really cool and I gave him a Book of Mormon. Don’t know if he will read it but I hope so.
Then on Thursday we split back and Elder Frickey and I went to the bishops to talk to him about people in the ward. We call it Gemiko here but I am not sure what the English translation is. We ended up having ice cream and sharing a thought with Bishop and his wife. It was good fun. Then he dropped us off at this park to do contacting along the river. It was way hot and I wanted to go swimming more than ever. It was 34 degrees Celsius. It was boiling hot on Thursday. I think that’s around 90 degrees Fahrenheit.
The View from my window in Hagen
On Friday, we weekly planned and then went to Iserlohn another area we have, to go by on less-active. Then we had another appointment back in Hagen. We waited around a while for our appointment and then we texted him and he told us he forgot.

On Saturday we went to a guy who we had an appointment with but his kid answered and said he wasn’t at home, so we went by on a less active with no luck. Then a member picked us up from the train station and we went to an investigator nearby and had a lesson with her. It went really well and we had a good time. She is a lady from Brazil I think. After the lesson, we went and ate dinner at Kramer’s again and there was a missionary who was here 20 years ago who was visiting. We had a good time and ate steaks.
On Sunday we went to church and a member from Bulgaria showed up. The elders there called us and let us know she was coming. She didn’t speak German or English so we sat next to her and tried to make her feel welcome. She had a friend who spoke German so we could sort of communicate. Then we were going home to do our studies and Brother Kramer asked if we had an appointment for dinner. We told him no, so he invited us and the kids from another family over because their parents were gone. We had a good time and played football with Kramer’s son and a kid named Leon. It was awesome. After dinner, we went home did studies and then went by on a guy who didn’t answer the door and then went to bed. And now I am here emailing you guys. haha. So that was my week!

My goal this week is to read Mathew in the bible. I am a few chapters in but I got to finish it. Yes, kopf is head and Hitler’s book was mein kamp and that means my battle. I love the German people they are all cool and funny. Some are grouchy and mean though. I never get to go to the Temple here. You get to go at the end of your mission but they just said it will be closing this September, until July 2017.  That really stinks.  I don’t know why, but I have really wanted to go to the temple lately. I think maybe I have seen what a huge blessing it is to others and how I kind of take it for granted.  I realized now that our whole purpose in life is to try and be like Jesus and bring others to him. I gave a short lesson in a district meeting that we had and was talking about the missionary purpose and I realized that Alma went around his entire life trying to convert people and how he never really took a break. I realized that when I get home, it’s going be a long time before I die but I shouldn’t quit trying to share the gospel. I kind of thought if this really is the true church and we are saying its true why do we stop being missionaries after our missions. That’s just kind of one thing I got thinking about.

Well I miss you too and Love you guys all very much! Have a good week!