Thursday, July 7, 2011
First few days in Prague! and new Czech address.
President and Sister Irwin, Sister Brimhall, Sister Anderson and Sister Glaus, my new tripanionship! I will be serving in the city of Ceske Budejovice.
Sister Emily Bean (left) & Sister Mary White (right) - My companions in the MTC. We have become so close!
MY NEW ADDRESS
Církev Ježíše Krista Svatých Posledních Dnů
Sister Lucy Brimhall
Milady Horákové 85/95
170 00 Praha 7 - Holešovice
Czech Republic - Europe
Hi! I know you weren't expecting until Monday, but apparently transfer days turn into Pdays. Anyway, yes, I am in the Czech Republic. I don't have much time as we have to head to a lesson soon, but here are the fantastic, juicy details of the first couple days!
I got my trainer/"Mom" - Sister Andersen from Kaysville, Utah. However, I joined a companionship and made it a tripanionship as our other companion, Sister Glaus from Florida, is finishing her mission in the middle of the transfer (3 weeks from now). They are just great! I feel bad because jet lag and the crazy schedule of this week has caused me to be a little out of it for a while. Hopefully I can get out of this shell shock before long. However, it's been the greatest experience so far and the rest of today should prove to be too. Last night we took a train to the area in which I will "born" - Ceske Budejovice. It's absolutely beautiful! Never have I seen a place that is so aesthetically pleasing. Prague blew my mind as well! The rumors are true. I can barely take it all in though, because I've got 1 and a half million other things on my mind as I walk the streets. Anyway, when we arrived in the city, we dropped off my suitcases and then we had 3 lessons lined up before the night was done. Our last one fell through, but the first one was with a lady. She was baptized 2 weeks ago, but is having and extremely difficult time as she's had a very rough life, including having a daughter die a couple years ago. My companions have said to me over and over again, and I've only caught glimpses of it so far, that there is a lot of suffering in this city. They don't see this kind of suffering in any other area really, and they just don't know why people suffer so much here. I'm not quite sure exactly what that means yet.
Anyway, we went to teach her. She definitely hesitated to open up to me as I was new and shell shocked and she was just not feeling very well or having a good day. It was very surreal to be sitting in a small, Czech apartment, in my first lesson as a real missionary. I wasn't that nervous, to be honest. I haven't been that nervous at all yet, except for this afternoon (we have 5 lessons back to back today with all new people). But with her, we talked a lot about faith and enduring to the end. She hasn't been coming to church because of various reasons, and so we talked about that as well. The sisters gave me a chance to speak at the end and bear my testimony. I was prepared to bear my testimony about Christ, as they asked me too. However, I wasn't expecting to understand the entire lesson, which I did, and to be able to follow how she was feeling, and what she needed. So, when they asked me to speak, Czech flowed out, and I felt the spirit so strongly. I added to the lesson, refered back to the things we talked about pertaining to faith and church, and I told her what I felt. I could see her light. I could see her faith. I knew that because she decided to be baptized, her Heavenly Father was very happy. The spirit was there, family. I don't know how that happened, but it did. It was such a powerful moment for me, and I think and hope it was for her as well. My companions and I walked out at the end and Sister Andersen said "You little zazrak!" I don't know if I'm a zazrak (miracle), but a miracle did happen in that room for me.
The next lesson was with a woman who was very in and out with her investigating. We were lucky to have this lesson with her yesterday. Her name is N, and she is from the Ukraine. She moved to the Czech 13 years ago. Oh, she was so great. She was such a sharp lady, very kind, and you could tell very thoughtful and desirous to follow all things good. She is Catholic and has a daughter. We taught her about the Book of Mormon. I was able to add my testimony of how the Book of Mormon helps me at different points in the lesson. The Czech didn't flow as well, but I still was quite shocked at my ability to use grammar concepts and words I learned just last week in the MTC. That's what happens when someone's salvation is on the line, I suppose. N was surprisingly accepting. It looked like she felt really good and remembered the way she felt with the missionaries before. She committed to read and pray about the Book of Mormon with her daughter every day. We extended the committment, she smiled, and she said yes. Oh gosh, I hope she keeps feeling that goodness, that spirit. Sister Glaus found her a long time ago, and kept talking about how amazing she is. I could see it very quickly.
Last night I felt very encouraged. I will say, though, that today has been pretty darn overwhelming so far. The problem is - I feel very comfortable in a lesson setting, and pretty okay in a contacting setting because of the new curriculum at the MTC; however, I didn't realize that I would need to learn how to live in the Czech as well. Finances, transportation, food, figuring out the city. I just don't want to deal with it. All I want to do is be a missionary right now and teach people. I'm sure all things will fall into place quick enough, but it's just overwhelming to have to think about so many things at once, and to feel so lost, but to also be trying to keep the spirit with me so I can help these investigators today who are struggling so much! Oy. It will work out. I think once jet lag wears off, things will look a little brighter. I'm also excited to teach so much this afternoon, because even though it should be a bit scary, I know that each time I sit down in a lesson with someone, I feel like that is where I was always meant to be. I love teaching. I love feeling people's spirits. I had that experience in the MTC as well - I would feel so nervous outside the door, but once I sat down, the spirit reminded me in full force that teaching might be one of my spiritual gifts. It fills my soul, and God has really helped me to develop that gift of discernment over the last couple months. I'm so grateful for that. I know it will be something I rely on for the whole of my mission.
Ok, well, we're off to teach S! My part of the lesson is to talk about something I've been thinking about for a while - the story of Peter walking on the water. S has a baptismal date on July 23rd. We're fasting for him currently because he's really struggling.
Say a prayer!
Czech Prague Mission
5 July 2011
Brother and Sister Brimhall:
Sister Lucy Brimhall has arrived safely in Prague with a smile on her face! We are sending a picture of her and President and Sister Irwin. She will be taken on a tour near the Mission Home and then finally allowed to sleep. She shall be a sleepy sister missionary! This will speedily allow her to acclimatize to our time zone.
Tomorrow Sister Brimhall shall meet her Trainer and begin loving the people of the Czech Republic. We are glad she is finally here. We shall take good care of her and the Lord will watch over and protect her.
If you have any questions or concerns, please contact us.
Sister Diane Bohne
Czech Prague Mission Office
In the London Airport on July 5th! My district of 12, 3 sisters and 9 elders. My parents flight out of London was at the same time as our change of planes to Prague. We saw each other at security!