Monday, October 26, 2015

Russian Ballet

So last week we went to a Russian Ballet!  I don't know really what to say about it besides that.  It was pretty impressive I guess haha I don't know.  I'm just glad you never enrolled me in dance mom!  I'll send some pictures because it was a cool experience!

During service this week their weren't that many people at Hari Krishna.  I think my taste buds are starting to change because I'm starting to like vegetables and fruits and even soup a whole lot more than before.  

English Practice this week was awesome!  We played Pictionary and it was way fun!  One of the women there speaks English so well she corrects me sometimes haha.  One of our investigators named Vladimir (the one who told us the whole Joseph Smith story) took us to a little river.  It was way fun!  Right when we got to the river he said "this is the place" just like Brigham Young did when they got to Utah.  Then he told us the exact date Brigham Young said that and where it was haha.  He knows so much about the church, so many little things like that haha.  The river was freezing, I put my hands in it and it's just as cold as Alaska.  The whole place reminded me exactly of Alaska.

It snowed a little bit yesterday.  They always know when the snow in coming to Angarsk because when it snows in some other place in Siberia it always comes to Angarsk just a few days later.  It's been getting colder but won't be Siberia cold until like November or December.  Nikolai is going to be baptized in 2 weeks.  We asked him who he wanted to baptize him and he kinda suggested his friend who introduced us to him but we were at Baba Nina's house (we call her Baba Nina which means Grandma Nina but that's just how it is in Russian), and she is way funny and loves the American Elders and when she heard that question she said you need to get baptized by an American, it's a better experience.  Well, we still tried to get him to choose his friend because that way it's better if they have that person who lives in the branch and not a missionary that will just leave.  He choose Elder Lyman, which is a great choice!  

It's been fun this week and I feel like I have learned a lot more Russian than I used to know!  We went to the Renik which is basically like the swap meet in Hawaii to look for a coat and stuff but when we got there most of the shops were put down because we went kinda late but I think we will go again this week just a little earlier.

I love Russia. I love you all.  Lucky to be here.

Elder Wilding

Russian Ballet

Elder Wilding and Elder Lyman
Vldamir's truck
With Elder Lyman
Russian Omelet

Monday, October 19, 2015

Hey Family!

Hey Family!

This week was fun!  A man on the street thought we were from Latvia.  Finally!  Some people are starting to think I'm Russian!  It is starting to get cold here.  We found the reenik which is the place where all the missionaries buy their stuff for winter.  I think we are going to go there this week but we will have to go during a dinner hour because it is closed every Monday.  I'll probably buy a coat, nice Russian hat, some gloves, maybe some boots (all the boots have fur on the inside!) Who knows what I'll find there but hopefully I find all that I need?

I got my first haircut in Russia this week.  Nothing different from the haircuts in America.  Except for the fact that the lady cutting my hair asked me like how I wanted my hair cut and I just said "Да" because I didn't understand her at all but somehow she got the message because she did a pretty good job.

English practice was awesome this week!  I'll send you a picture of the sign we put out on the street that is for English practice.  The Sisters were gone on a visa trip so it was just me and Elder Lyman.  We always split into 2 groups, the beginners and the advanced, but last time we had the Sisters so it was easy to split because we would have a companionship to a group.  But because they were gone I had the advanced group and Elder Lyman had the beginners.  I was a little worried that I couldn't lead the discussion because it was my first time teaching or leading without Elder Lyman right next me.  (We just separated in the same room.)  But luckily everyone in my group spoke enough English and I understood enough Russian to get the job done.  It was really fun!  Denil (one of the guys at English practice) said, "Why is your church interesting to learn about, and the church here in Russia is not?" Haha Had just showed a video and the Spirit was strong!

We are teaching another guy from English class named Vladimir.  When we were teaching him the restoration he told us the entire Joseph Smith story haha.  Some people are so prepared here!  He came to church and is reading the Book of Mormon and is an awesome investigator!  A sober man on the street told us God lives on the moon and that he planted us on this earth like carrots and cabbage.

A member of the branch is going on a mission!  We helped him fill out his papers.  It was kinda cool filling out his papers with him because it reminded me of when I did it.  Ruselan is back!  He has been working everyday for the past 6 weeks or so, so we could never meet.  But he's back and ready to meet!

Nikiolai is going to get baptized in 2-3 weeks!  We just got some things we have to work out with him.  He's great and is reading and praying!

Love you all!

Elder Wilding
English Class Sign
Russian Building

Monday, October 12, 2015


I forgot my book this week where I write down everything that happened during the week but hopefully I can remember some.

We watched general conference this week!  That was incredible!  Those talks were so inspired!  The 3 new apostles are awesome!  I was really impressed with how humble they all were.  In Elder Renlund's talk he talked about how he has done nothing in his life to get him there.  That's how I feel.  I didn't do anything in my life that made it so that I would get called to Russia.  The Lord called me and he needs his work done his way.  I also loved how Elder Renlund talked how if we really want charity we need to look at everyone through the eyes of their parents, even Heavenly Father.  Also Elder Hale's talk was one of my favorites!  I want my future wife to watch Elder Hale's talk and Elder Nelson's talk haha.

We had an awesome English practice this week!  It was a miracle how many people showed up!  We weren't expecting too many but I think like 8-12 people came!  And about half of them were really good at English and half of them basically knew nothing.  We had the advanced group and the Sisters had the beginners.  One of the guys in our group was so interested in us.  He couldn't believe that we left our homes and our families for 2 years for Russia.  We told him we came because we know our church is true!  He thought it was so awesome and we are going to try and schedule a meeting with him so that we can teach him!  Also another miracle.  We were just on the street contacting and stopped a guy and started talking to him and he started talking to us back in English which is always cool because I can actually understand what they are saying!  He is an English teacher named Igor!  He says he met with the missionaries before and has a Book of Mormon.  He said he reads it from time to time and said, "It is interesting how Christ would appear to the people in America also, not just interesting for the Americans but for the whole world."  It was so cool!  He already believes everything, we just need to meet with him.  Russians a lot of the time don't answer their phones though.  We saw him on the street and invited him to come to general conference.  And he asked if we have living day prophets and apostles.  We told him yes.  I was expecting him to say that all of that was done away with in Christ's time but he was like good, the Bible says that's how the church should be run!  He is so golden!

It isn't cold yet.  It snowed once but now it is warm and I'm in a short sleeve.  I will try to find a coat!  I accidentally said goodbye to a guy on the street instead of saying hello.  I yelled "das vidana" at him instead of "zdrasvootiye" and he looked at me with a weird face and said "das vidana" right back at me haha.  

It looks like I will be training in 6 weeks!  Scary!  Hope I learn enough Russian by that time!  Or else I feel bad for whoever I'm training!

This week has been awesome!  Love it here!

Love, Elder Wilding
My District

My bed
Conference BABY!!!!
My District

Monday, October 5, 2015

It Snowed

I can't believe Mitch, Derek and Tyler got called to the same mission, that's crazy!

We went to a food stand this week called были.  It is amazing!  It has huge pancakes that they roll up like burritos and fill with chocolate or caramel!  Tastes like heaven!  Also, I have been listening to a lot of Bruce R. McConkie talks.  That man is a genius.  Also I have been trying to get down the Restoration in under 2 min. so that I can share with people on the street.  Memorizing is so huge in learning a language!

On Oct. 1st it snowed all day.  A little boy threw a snowball at us haha, but just because he asked us if we wanted to have a snowball fight with him and we couldn't because we were heading somewhere so Elder Lyman just told him to throw it at us.  The little kid was so happy haha!  But the next day all of the snow melted.  And now it is way hot again.  The weather is so weird right now.  Some days I go out with 2 coats and then the next day with only a short sleeve white shirt.  Probably will go and buy my winter coat sometime soon.  The only problem is the Reenik (the place you go to buy) is closed on Mondays and that's when P-day is.  We might have to go during a dinner hour or something.

I didn't get to watch conference yet.  We get it this week.  I'm way excited!  The branch watches it in Russian together and the missionaries watch it in English and all the missionaries bring a ton of treats!  Can't wait!  Our baptism didn't happen this week because he had to work.  It's so sad.  They work like all the time but still make no money.  That is why baptisms haven't been happening.  People are just always working.  We plan to have him baptized in 2 weeks now.  I really think this one will happen!

I was reading in the teachings of the Prophet's book.  Heber J. Grants.  He talked in it about never being discouraged.  He used Nephi as an example.  Nephi never got discouraged.  When his brothers went and tried to get the plates of brass and failed twice, he didn't murmur but just went and did and relied on the Lord.  And throughout his whole life he is always trusting in the Lord and never murmuring and never getting discouraged.  I want to be like that.  Never be discouraged.    

Also in Nephi, I find it way cool when it talks about when Nephi broke his bow.  He broke his bow and his brothers murmured, even his father the prophet murmured.  What did Nephi do, did he get discouraged?  Did he just stop and complain to God.  No he went and made a bow out of a tree.  Then what is most interesting, he went to his father and asked where he should go hunt.  It was pretty clear that Nephi was supposed to take over after Lehi.  Lehi was old and now was his perfect time to control.  But he didn't. 

"If you treat an individual as he is, he will stay as he is.  But if you treat as if he were what he could be and ought to be, he will become what he ought to be." - Goethe

That is exactly what Nephi did.  He knew what his father should have been and instead of treating him as someone who complained against God, he treated him as his father the prophet who receives inspiration from God.  And that principle applies to all aspects of life.  That is how I am going to start treating my investigators.  As if they kept the commitments we extended to them and in other ways.

I finally had something at a member house I didn't like.  Fish soup.  I ate it though.  I thought I would never get fed by members on my mission but it has happened quite a bit in Angarsk.

I was in a lesson and trying to say, "No person could write the Book of Mormon without God" but what I said is, "No person could read the Book of Mormon without God".   The guy looked at me way weird haha.  But my Russian is getting a ton better!

We made a cool goal.  For every 3 hours we are on the streets contacting, we want one number.  Our first time doing it we didn't have a number 2:40 in but we saw a man on a bench and sat and talked with him and at 2:50 we got one!

I love it here!  Good job mom on qualifying for Boston!

Elder Wilding
It snowed
Cool castle
The moon
Elder Lyman's 20th birthday breakfast