Monday, March 28, 2016

March 21, 2016

Montag- after shopping we got two pizzas at, Pizza Mann, with a two for one coupon we got in the mail. It is probably the best pizza I've had since I've been in Europe, haha! We both got Hawaiian. Then we emailed on Innenstadt. After emailing we went to get an appointment for Elder Walkers VISA at the Rathaus but there were to many people we
didn't en up getting an appointment. After that we looked around at some shops and talked to the Sisters we went finding. Before we went home we went to the church because we had to take a survey/test thing for the church to see how our German is doing. Then we went home, had dinner and planned! :)

Dienstag- in the morning we went and got Elder Walker a VISA appointment and then had distriktsversammlung. It was the best distriktsversammlung I've had! After we had all brought food to eat lunch at the church. It is always fun to eat with the district. After the district left on their train we went street contacting. I talked to a lady and she listened but said she wasn‘t interested. Then Elder Walker asked where she was from. She said she was from Russia. (We surprisingly meet a lot of Russians here, haha!) It just so happens that Elder Walker was carrying a "Книга Мормона" (Book of Mormon)! She was really quit surprised and became interested! We gave her the Book and explained our Church. She asked us our names and asked what "Elder" meant. For some reason Elder Walker knew how to say it in Russian. She said that she would read in the Book and left. That has been the first person to actually talk with us in a while, so hopefully she reads! After contacting we went home, ate and planned.

Mittwoch- we went to the Church to do our Deutsch Kurs for the Persians. It turned out they had another Kurs that took all day so we went finding instead. We were getting destroyed on the street, Hahaha! No one wanted to talk with us. They would ignore us or say "Vergessen Sie es" (forget it). One lady pulled up her phone right when Elder Walker tried to talk to her. A bunch of teenagers saw it and started laughing at us. Once of them said "sie ist Komplett vorbeigangen, (sorry).” Which is incorrect German, hahaha! But he was Austrian so it is to be expected. Then we started heading back to the
Church for GMK. I must have mistaken the time and there was still an hour until GMK. So we turned around before we got to the Church to do some more finding. We could have taken the Straßenbahn back but I felt prompted to walk. When we started contacting no one talked to us. Before leaving we stopped one more person but he didn't listen so we started towards the Straßenbahn. Then we heard a man say, "Hey jungs!" We stopped and started talking with him. He basically referred himself and gave us his number and address. He called us to make sure it was the right number and put us as a contact. He wants to meet with us again! He seems really cool! It was one of the coolest pong entails I've gotten. After that we had GMK and went home for dinner and planning.

Donnerstag- after studies we went by on some members but two of them don't live in the same apartments anymore and the other one wasn't there. :P After we went to the Church to finish up our invitations for the baptism on Sunday and round everything out which took the rest of the day.

Freitag- we did studies, then had an eating appointment at Sister
Dafalias with the Graham's. It was really good and so much food!! It was a 6 course meal, I think. Then we went to the church to help set up for the Persian New Year party for Saturday. No one showed up so we went home and did weekly planning, which took the rest of our day.

Samstag- after studies we went to the church to help set up for the Persian New Year party. The party started at 4:00 and went the rest of the night.

Sonntag- after choir and sacrament meeting we had our investigator class that Brother Ausobsky taught. It was about enduring until the end. Then we had our Persian Priesthood class while we filled up the font with water. After church we got the Persians dressed in their baptismal clothes. They thanked us for teaching them the “Joseph Smith course” (that is what they call it), haha. :D Then we went into the chapel for the baptismal service. We had Mahsa, one of our translators, translate the talks into Persian for them. I gave the first talk about baptism. Then we went into the baptismal room for the baptisms! :) The baptisms went smoothly. It was amazing how strong the Spirit was. We went back into the chapel and Sister Mickelson gave the second talk on the gift of the Holy Ghost. After one of the Persians, Rahoolah, thanked the ward for their support and trust. Which Mahsa translated into German. Then we had some food and went home for studies.

~~So on to the spiritual minute of the day!!! Da da da da dada da da!!!!

On Wednesday we were getting denied pretty hardcore! If we would've been able to have a conversation with even one person we would've never met Thomas. It was all for a good reason but we just couldn't see how it was going to all play out. We could've complained because in that short moment nothing was working out but we would've never have met Thomas. In an earlier email I wrote about how sometimes people live with their hands right in front of their face. Sometimes it's nice to take a step back and get the whole picture.


Persian New Year


Wednesday, March 16, 2016

March 14, 2016

Just pictures this week. He didn't have a lot of time to email. Just a few back and forth. The consensuses is he is doing great! They had a new Sister transfer in,  Sister Hofmockel, a Frenchie. He is close enough to the Alps they could visit on a Pday. It is always so good to hear from him. We love the email that goes to everybody but sometimes the small intimate ones are just what we need. Elder Ashcroft can feel everyone's prayers and support. Thanks to everyone for keeping him in your hearts!
~Love the Ashcroft Family


Wednesday, March 9, 2016

March 7, 2016

It been a good week! I hope everybody is doing well!

Montag- we shopped for groceries then had carbonara pasta with some meat for lunch. After lunch we emailed at a McDonald's down the road. After emailing we went to Bahnhof to check for train times because we had to go to Ansfelden for an eating appointment at 17:00. We went down to Innenstadt to get me some socks & shampoo. I also ended up getting a tie! :) We missed the first train to Ansfelden but got on another one and were a few minutes late, Schade! When we got there we walked to the Obermayers and had a very good meal! Sister Obermayer made a really good Gurkensalat (cucumber salad). Then after a spiritual thought we took a train back to Linz. When I was on the train I remembered that I had been wanting to trade a tie for an a ÖBB workers tie (the train ticket checkers). But then I looked down and I happened to be wearing my favorite tie... :( so I didn't trade him. When we got back we went home and did planning.

Dienstag- we had Distriktsversammlung in Linz at 11:30. It was pretty good and the German
tip for the week helped me quite a bit. Then Elder Graham came down and had a huge box of candy and soda that apparently one of our ward missionaries (Klaus Haindl) got for us!!! We were so happy! After Distriktsversamlung we went and ate at Vapianos as a distrikt. After the distrikt left we went back to the church to get all the food and bring back. When we got back it was pretty late so we had a real quick dinner then planned.

Mittwoch- we did studies then went over to the Persians Heim to let Sister Berry say goodbye before she went home. It was really fun and they cooked us Persian food. It was great! :) After that we headed to the church, filled out a Fortschritts Bericht, and had GMK. That was pretty much our day.

Donnerstag- we went to say goodbye to Sister Berry at the train station at 9:30. It was cool, their new convert was there and also one of our Persians. We exchanged Tschüss book entrees and she left. She is coming back to the mission to visit and said she's gonna come visit me! Then we finished studies and went finding. Then at 6:30 we went to Bahnhof to greet sister Zink the new sister in Linz. We gave her a pack of snickers as a welcoming gift haha! After putting their luggage in the Graham's car we found till dinner.

Freitag- after studies we went up into Lichtenberg to work on Emil
Ivanovski's Haus! It was a beautiful day! We got all of the basement dug out and moved a lot of rocks. Part way through we had our regular sandwiches with fresh French bread, sausage and cheese! The place where we eat overlooks the alps which is pretty cool! Then after some more working we came home to do weekly planning. There was a surprise on our doorstep! It was a crate of Italian salad dressing!? Hahahaha most random gift ever! There is soooo much! One of our ward missionary's gave it to us.


 Samstag- we had our Deutsch Kurs then we taught the Persians. We went through the importance of baptism and the Law of Chastity/Word of Wisdom. It went really well. Then we headed to our next lesson but he didn't show up. There happened to be a lot of people from Afghanistan so of course we started speaking to them in Persian! They were like what the heck? White people speaking Persian! Haha so we taught them about our church and they were really accepting! They were so nice! It is probably because refugees are so humbled. They walked all the way here which is 3000 kilometers. After that we went dooring in a apartment building but nothing turned out.

Sonntag- choir was really great and we all sounded amazing! After that
we went and said hi to our investigators. For testimony meeting the new Linz Sister (Sister Zink) gave her testimony. She is pretty cool! She is from Germany and only has two transfers left. Elder Bensing is the other German in our district. He is our district leaders Frau haha. Anyways after sacrament our investigator class was also really good. We read the first of Moroni 6. After that we had our priesthood class. We separate the Persians to teach them separately with our GML (ward mission leader). After church we got a surprise member appointment with brother Ausobsky! A lot of times we have member appointments on fast Sunday, so we just fast earlier. Wir hatten Knödel mit Fleisch und auch Gemüse. Zum trinken hatten wir Apfelsaft. Es war rechtschaffen, aber wirklich! :) it was the best Knödel I've ever had by far! Then after we taught Brother Ausobskys son how to shoot a basketball! It's funny no one over here knows how!

 So I decided to make a funny list about how Austria is different
1. I haven't seen a pickup truck since I've been here haha!
2. People wear lederhosen around as regular clothes.
3. They don't have regular mustard at subway...
4. Everyone wears house slippers haha!
5. People drive crazy!!!!
6. Every car is a hatchback I swear!
7. No one knows how to use the progressive tense when they speak
English because they don't have it in German hahaha! Example: they
say "I go to the house." When they mean "I am going to the house."

Hahaha crazy Austrians!! Well that brings me to the spiritual thought
or should I say "geistige Gedanke" of this week!

"Abrahams servant, like Abraham, was a man of great faith. Abraham had told him that his errand (to find find Issac a wife) was a commandment of the Lord. So when faced with a tremendously challenging task the servant turned to the Lord for help. Instead of just asking the Lord to solve his problem, he presented a plan for the Lord to confirm."

So I read this in studies this week and it really hit me because a lot of the time I just ask the Lord for help when I don't know what to do. But I realized that I needed to make a plan or a way to go about things and then take it to the Lord.


Friday, March 4, 2016

February 29, 2016

Well this week has been kinda crazy! So the whole deal with our
Persian investigators is that we are moving the baptismal date to the 20th of March. We need to prepare the ward to take them in and also prepare the Persians to progress in church callings after the baptism. We got transfer calls on Saturday and I am staying another transfer in Linz! I am pretty happy about that! :) Also one of the Frenchies from my MTC group is coming to the Salzburg zone!! :D On with my week!

Montag- We went and got groceries then we went to the church to teach one of our Persian investigators, Omid, German. Omid is the best at German out of our Persians. It was a really nice day so we took a whiteboard outside and sat on the grass to teach. After we headed back to our apartment to eat lunch. I needed an iPad case and screensaver so we took a straßenbahn from Unionkreuzung to Goethekreuzung then a bus that went over the Donau to a Media Market. We also went to Interspar to get Elder Walker a pen for his journal. After that it was pretty late so we went back to Innenstadt and found.

Dienstag- In the morning we went to Bahnhof to meet up with the Wels
Elders, then headed to the church. While in Wels, we took the Sisters, before district meeting started, to talk about the whole Persian baptism confusion. It went really well and we settled everything that was going on. The Persians are our investigators but the sisters are always at our lessons. The discussion went really well and the spirit was there. After that we had district meeting. It was one of the more spiritual district meetings we've had and we all had gave a lot of input! Danach I had an Aus Tausch mit Wels (Exchange). So we all ate at Burgerista, then me and Elder Bowers took a train with The Haag Elders. When we got to Wels we went by on a previous investigator. In Wels they don't have bus tickets so we walked for about 45 minutes to an hour. When we were almost there we saw her walking on the sidewalk and she started talking to us. We got her new number the Haag Elders are planning on going back to teach her. :) We walked back to the apartment to do studies and dinner. We had potato wedges and chicken nuggets! Mmmm! Lecker!

Mittwoch- In the morning we had personal study, then we went to
Bahnhof to take a train back to Linz. After we got back we went to the apartment to drop off all my stuff I brought for the tausch. Then headed to the church for our Deutsch Kurs, and lesson. For our lesson we had to tell the Persians about the new baptismal date, why it was that way, and what we were going to do. They took it really well and everything is running really smoothly. We did service for Walter Vogl by helping him clean his garage and he feed us a really good chicken soup his wife made! Then we went back to the church and had GMK (ward mission council meeting?). After GMK we headed home and planned for the next day.

Donnerstag- We didn't feel very well at all so we stayed in the apartment most of the day making out a calendar for the Persian lessons we are gonna have and what we are going to teach them.

Freitag- After studies Emil Ivanovski came and picked us up to go work on his new house! I love doing service for Emil! He is such a cool tupe! Part way through his dad showed up to help and we talked with him for a while. Turns out we didn't even know, but Emil is Macedonian but grew up in Austria. So him and his dad speak Macedonian to each other! We dug out more dirt from his basement the whole day! It was good and I've actually learned to like working since I've been out on my mission! Part way through we had lunch like we always do. French bread, sausage and cheese! Then we came home and did weekly planning.

Samstag- After studies we had another Deutsch Kurs and lesson. The lesson turned out really well. We talked about the three main things that keep you strong and active in the gospel prayer, church and scripture study (the tripod). If you use three fingers to hold up a book it stays but if you take a finger away the book falls. We taught about how you need all three things. After the lesson we had a finding day in Linz with the district because they bought tickets for the baptism that day and didn't want to waist them. I actually when dooring with a recent missionary Kareem! He is super cool and is the only member in his family. He is actually from Egypt but grew up in Austria and served a mission in Johannesburg Africa. Then the district left because they had lessons to go to. Elder Walker and I had a late Mittagessen at Burgerista then found.

Sonntag- In the morning I accidentally turned off my alarm in my sleep so I slept in till 7:40 hahaha whoops! So I hurried and took a quick shower and we headed to church. After choir we went and greeted an African guy that decided to visit our church. He is from Nigeria and is a really nice guy! In our investigator class I had to translate for him into English. After that he left and we had our lesson with the Persians for priesthood meeting. It was about temple work. It started out not as good but ended really well and the spirit was definitely there. We told them that the baptism is not all we are trying to do. That we eventually want to get them to the temple and to be sealed to their children. We also brought them ties and white shirts so that they can wear them to church. After church we had an eating appointment with the Miesbauers! They are a really cool family and always make the best food! :) We had Knödel. We shared a spiritual thought and then went home for studies.

And that brings me to the spiritual thought for the week! It is going to be short this week but I hope it helps you out!

Trust is a necessity in life. Trust is one of the best ways to raise children, strengthen relationships and many other things. Trust is one of the best ways to help someone reach beyond their normal capabilities. I am really bad at trusting people myself but I have really learned a lot out here on my mission. I have really learned to trust in the way God wants things. I know that if you truly let God mold you into the person he wants you to be you can become a greater person than you ever could be on your own. Das sage ich in Namen Jesu Christi Amen.

I hope you guys have a great week and keep being awesome!

Elder Ashcroft