So this past week has been excellent. Elder Newton and I are working our tails off! We have two girls both named Roxana who are close to baptism. We just need to establish dates and keep them coming to church. We need to help them have a sure testimony of the truth of the Book of Mormon. Other than that, we have a few other investigators and a ton of potential investigators that we find on the streets and in parks. This last week, Elder Newton and I got a total of 20 lessons! That's my most ever! Between 10 and 15 of them were with people sitting on benches. We have had not-so-good success in the blocs here, so "we're takin it to the streets" (I think that's from some song, that's why I quoted it). We talk to almost everybody outside! It is really simple: go up to anybody on a bench, preferrably young families or couples, and ask them if we can sit and talk about the Book of Mormon. Some say no, but some say yes! We invite people to read and pray about it, ask for their number, and try setting up with them later. We also invite everyone to come to slujba (church service)! We're trying to get tons of people to church and more member-present lessons. So, yeah, missionary work is going awesomely (is that a word?) here.
The branch is cool. There are some awesome and nice people in it. We sometimes have lessons with recent converts and less actives. I haven't yet met one recent convert, Andrei. However, I think I've met just about everyone else. I've only been to church here once so far (because of Arad district conference, which I will speak about in a bit). Between 15 and 20 come. This last week, we started english classes again! Elder Newton and I teach beginner and Elder Fonnesbeck and Laherty teach advanced. On Tuesday, our first class, 16 people came. On Saturday, 10 came. After that class, we stayed and had a lesson with our investigator Roxana and her friend, Andreea. We've been finding some refferals too through existing investigators and through street contacting. We're basically filling up our investigator pool right now, and we hope to see more progressing investigators and baptisms in the next few weeks by doing this. Along with the work, my language skills are improving. I am feeling more confident with it. I can understand a lot of what people say now, but not everything. Constant contacting definitely helps with speaking and understanding!
So yesterday on Sunday, we didn't have church here. Instead we got to go to Arad and have district conference there! It included members and missionaries from Deva, Arad, Oradea, and Timisoara. Elder Newton and I left early Sunday morning at 4 am by train with 2 members, Viorel and Fratele Simionescu. The other elders came a little later with Sora Floare. The train ride lasted 3 hours and I didn't get any sleep. We got to Arad at 7 and walked over to the church villa there. Arad is a really cool, western European-like city. I apologize because I totally forgot to take a single picture the whole time there. We met and had a meeting with branch presidents and recent converts, then had a priesthood meeting, then the general meeting. Elder Craig Wright presided. I think he's an area 70 or something. He gave a super good message (with a translator because Elder Wright is from England) about recognizing the Spirit. It was a very spiritual meeting. There were about 50 or so members from those 4 cities. It was great! I also got to see missionaries!!! I saw elders: Gunter, Mikolyski, Shroedter, Nilsson, Martin, Bruner, Frandsen and his boboc, and Elder Bateman and Betteridge (ZL's) Also, District President Ursu and President and Sora Lundberg spoke. We finished, got supplies, and headed back to Deva again. Great day.
Finally, the other cool thing we did was climb up to the cetate! Cetate means fortress. Just this morning, we got up and all 4 of us hiked up and had our studies on a grassy knoll overlooking green hills and sheeps grazing. We saw the whole city of Deva below us, and also walked around and inside the cetate. I have pics! It was great. We took a little elevator lift back down right to where the Olympic training facility is for the gymnastics team. I got a picture next to a bronze bust of Nadia Comanici (I forgot the spelling), that super famous Romanian gymnastics lady. Fun stuff. It was a little cloudy, but sunnied up later. It was a beautiful old fort and scenery all around us. I took tons of cool pictures.
Well, that's my week for y'all. I am doing fine! I hope y'all are doing well. It's good to hear that home and church and school and work are going well mom and dad and family. Too bad for BYU. They "ran out of gas" like you said Dad. It's cool that they did so well though! Is Jimmer wanting to go to the NBA? Is he a senior or what? Anyways, I hope it doesn't keep raining in Redlands for too much longer. Mom and dad, enjoy Jamers and Mark and Kenadee staying! Take lots of pics and send me some. What are ya'll gonna do? Say hi to Miles and Collete and Mark Larson and the Andreasens back for me! I heard about Japan. Scary stuff. Stuff like that keeps happening more and more though. All I can say is stick close to the Gospel. It will help us be ready for anything. Well, I can't think of anything else to say. I'm sorry if I forget to answer any more questions mom and dad. Sometimes, you ask too many! Feel free to accept that friend request on FB mom. Catalin's a super cool member from Constanta. Don't get too carried away in chatting with a ton of people I've met! haha. Mom, it's almost Easter. I have a favor to ask you. Will you send me an Easter package sometime? I'd really like a tons of those Cadbury cream eggs and mini egg candies. Those are the best! Thanks for all the stuff you send me. I love it all. Well, I'm done. I'm excited for this week, and for April! I'm super happy that General Conference is next week. I hope I can see it somewhere. We also don't have to wear suits anymore the day conference comes. Time for the short sleeves and slacks! I am definitely going to get them tailored though, because they are so fat and loose on me, plus it's cheap here to tailor stuff. Alrighty. I'll talk again soon. Have a saptamana buna! Va iubesc foarte mult. Sanatate si numai bine. Le revedere! Cu drag, Varstnicul Lee.