Monday, November 28, 2016

Mannheim District
We have crazy-fun together!
Hope you all had a great Thanksgiving! I enjoyed a lovely bowl of M├╝sli und Banane as my feast.

First off WE SET A BAPTISMAL DATE WITH MANUELA! Woooo! She's super excited to get baptized on January 7th ­čśŐ She's been reading in the Book of Mormon and praying everyday. We taught her about repentance
and how we have to repent before we are baptized. Sister Weiler and I had felt prompted to teach her about repentance and she had so many questions about HOW we repent. She loved that we believe that repentance requires change on our part and it's not just confessing our sins to a church leader. We used 2 Nephi 31 as our lesson plan. We read the whole thing and asked her what she thought and she said "Glauben an Jesus Christus, Umkehr, sich taufen lassen, die Gabe des Heiligen Geistes empfangen, und bis ans Ende ausharren." She learned and understood the entire doctrine of Christ after reading one chapter in the Book of Mormon! She's so sweet and so prepared to accept the restored gospel.
One of Mannheim's beautiful churches.

We had a lot of time to go finding this week. Of course when you're going door to door all day long it's pretty hard, but there's always
some kind of adventure that ensues. We doored into this woman named Selam. She barely spoke any German (basically ja, nein, und ich spreche kein Deutsch). However she invited us in anyway. We shared a video about Christ and she got excited and she got her bible. The letters look like noodles (picture below)! I asked if we could say a prayer and she caught on and started kneeling. As we kneeled together in her humble apartment I said the prayer in German. I knew she couldn't understand what I was saying. However, the Spirit was so strong and after I ended she looked at us and said "ich verstehe" (Ich understand). Sister Weiler had a scripture come to mind during the prayer and we were able to find it in her bible! John 3:16 "God so loved the world that he gave his only Begotten Son." I didn't do a good job describing this experience, but I just don't have the words to describe what I felt praying for that woman. All I can say is that God loves Selam very much and I was able to feel that.

SO. I HAVE A CHALLENGE! If someone can PLEASE find out what language this woman speaks, I will forever be grateful! I want to see if we can find anyone who can translate so we can teach her.

Please tell me what this mystery language is?
Speaking of translators we found a Bulgarian potential and we got permission to skype with the missionaries in Bulgaria to teach him! So cool!

We also had a woman give us a tour of her house because she just finished remodeling her bathroom. Of course we said yes! She ended up giving us 20 things of mini shampoos, conditioners, and soap. She's way cool and took a Book of Mormon and said to come back.

We had Pfahlkonferenz in Kaiserslautern and Heidelberg so we traveled a lot too. However on Thursday we were trying to get to H├╝ttenfeld and took the wrong bus and ended up in Worms (not in my area). We got stuck there for 40 minutes and got stuck in Lampertheim because our train was versp├Ątet 25 minutes. It was pretty frustrating.

This week had it's ups and downs, but we chose to focus on the positive side! I was reading in Alma 26 and it says:
5 Behold, the field was ripe, and blessed are ye, for ye did thrust in the sickle, and did reap with your might, yea, all the day long did ye labor; and behold the number of your sheaves! And they shall be gathered into the garners, that they are not wasted.
6 Yea, they shall not be beaten down by the storm at the last day; yea, neither shall they be harrowed up by the whirlwinds; but when the storm cometh they shall be gathered together in their place, that the storm cannot penetrate to them; yea, neither shall they be driven with fierce winds whithersoever the enemy listeth to carry them.
7 But behold, they are in the hands of the Lord of the harvest, and they are his; and he will raise them up at the last day.

Sometimes it's pretty exhausting and difficult out here. But it makes the good experience (like Selam and Manuela) all the more special and we appreciate them a lot more than if we hadn't worked for them. And even if we don't have a baptism every weekend, who says our reward is in this life?

I love being a missionary so much! The last 6 months have been a blast. There will never be another time in my life that I have the opportunity to talk to so many people and share something so important to me. The biggest thing I've learned in the last 6 months is how much God loves his children. Heavenly Father loves us so much that he gave his Beloved Son.  Jesus Christ atoned for our sins and overcome death so that we can return to live with God.

Liebe Gr├╝├če!

Sister Luymes

Mannheim's Winter Festival. Such beautiful boutiques.

Warm - Chocolate - YUM!

Beatiful ornaments carved from wood.

Festive Winter Boutiques.

We call this "Church of the Santa" because of the image
hung above the door at this time of year.


Monday, November 21, 2016

Hiking to a cave today with Sis Weiler to go spelunking.
She just might be as goofy as I am.
Sorry this email came so late. This week was absolutely crazy. First off we had a mission tour conference in Offenbach. One of the area 70's came and talked to us. Elder and Sister Adler were absolutely wonderful! I learned so much from them in just the few hours of the conference. They also introduced the Christmas initiative for 2016! Die Welt ein Licht, the Light for the World. We got to watch the video that they're releasing on November 25th and we got fancy new pass along cards. As missionaries our job is to share these cards and introduce the initiative to everyone: investigators, random people on the street, and members alike. The focus of this year is serving others 25 ways in 25 days. I love it because it helps us focus on one of the easiest ways for us to become like the Savior – through service. 

Sorry this email will have to be way short. On Thursday night we got a call that a sister in the mission was super sick and was in the Heidleberg hospital and that we needed to come and stay with her because the Heidleberg STL's had a leadership meeting in Frankfurt. Long story short we were in the hospital all day Friday and I accidentally left my iPad in the sister's apartment. I just got it back today so I've only had about 10 min. 

- Sister Luymes

We hiked to a cave today

Sunday, November 20, 2016

The following is a portion of a personal note home...

Hope you guys have a wonderful Thanksgiving! We got some Spekuliert  (not sure how to spell it) cookies and we got some garlic bread. That's probably as close as we'll get to a Thanksgiving feast.  I'll definitely be missing you guys a lot. Send a video of you all at thanksgiving dinner!

For Pday we hiked up to a cave and went spelunking! It was super cool! We found this box with a book in it and we got to sign our names in it. 

My District is freaking hilarious! It's super weird to not have another pair of sisters though. It's just Sister Weiler and I urrounded by guys. Thank goodness Sister Weiler and I get along so well. :)

In other news my 6 month mark is on Friday and I'm kind of freaking out because it's gone by so fast! I feel like I've earned these 6 months that for sure. It's weird because Sister Williams hit her 6 months 2-3 weeks into when she was training me and now I'm on the flip side. SO WEIRD! I am wondering though were they fast for you or pretty slow? Or mix? What about for Dixie? 

I got my flu shot through the mission on Wednesday so alles Klar!

Ok but my mailbox is waaaaaaaaaaaaay sketchy and I'm not even sure if I get mail there! So please send mail to the mission office. 


Monday, November 14, 2016

Mannheim & Solar Plexi!!!

Meet Sis. Weiler -- at one with nature.
 My first impression of Mannheim was getting lost for 20 min because the Hauptbahnhof (Central Station) is HUGE! I was alone and afraid.... but after asking three different people I found jemand (kind) charitable enough to let me use their handy to call my old comp to get a hold of my new one. They found me curled up in front of the McDonalds begging for food.....Kidding only kidding! I was lost though and I did call Sister Harris to tell Sister Weiler where I was.

Second impression of Mannheim was THERE ARE STRASSENBAHN! (Basically metros that go on the street) I've heard they are fantastic for contacting and I can now attest. Love 'em!

Our apartment has wifi which is fantastic. The bed is a definite upgrade. We don't have a dryer or a dishwasher. The shower is way better too. So far it's felt pretty homie so that's good.

This week was probably one of the slowest of my mission. I think because everything and everyone is new again, time somehow slowed down because I have so much to learn. But it's been a fantastic week
already full of miracles!

Speaking of new people! Sister Weiler is my new comp! She's from Logan, Utah. She's 20. She did 2 years at Utah State before coming on her mission. She ran on the track and cross country team at Utah State so she's pretty good at Morgan Sport. She just got finished being trained so she's one transfer behind me. She's way fun, obedient, and a hard worker. I am super excited to serve with her!

Alright miracle time:
1) We taught Manuelle on Friday. She's Chilean, but was adopted by Germans and grew up here. She had met Sister Hall and Sister Weiler on the street by a mailbox a week ago. She told us that she had gone to the mailbox and had forgotten her letter. So she went back home and ran into them at the mailbox. They gave her a Book of Mormon and set up an appointment with her. So sister Weiler and I taught her the first lesson! She already has been reading everyday in the BOM before we even had committed her. She had been wondering why there were so many churches in the world and she felt like God had put us on the same path at the mailbox to answer her questions. She's absolutely adorable and we have another appointment this Thursday!

2) On Saturday we had a district finding Aktivit├Ąt (activity). We were going white boarding. So we were walking around the main street with a question on a white board. Some people just shouted funny answers at us and other actually stopped to have a conversation. However, the first guy we talked to we ended up making an appointment with him for today, which was way cool! We gave him our card and we wrote down his number. We called today to remind him of our appointment and to our dismay we realized we had written the number wrong! So we said a prayer and 10 minutes later HE texted US! In my entire time on my mission I've only had someone actually use the number on our cards 1 other time!

As for the solar plexi (plural of solar plexus?), I've already met my new favorite person here. Her name is Monka. She's German, but she spoke English to us with a very heavy Southern accent. She explained the secrets of how to feel your own energy waves.
Step 1. Rub your hands together
Step 2. Pull them apart about 6"
Step 3. Sit down
Step 4. Close your eyes
Step 5. Pay close attention to how your solar plexus feels and the
space between your hands. "You can just feeeeeeeeeeeeel it"

I think I'll like it here very much. The ward is great and I'm already meeting people I love very much.

Take care of your solar plexus!
Bis n├Ąchste Montag!
- Sister Luymes

Lovely Fall Colors

Heibe Maroni -- Hot Moroni???

Farewell to Kaiserslautern District.

Monday, November 7, 2016

Contemplating my transfer to Mannheim

This week we set a baptismal date with Frau Stanke! We had an amazing first lesson with her and when I asked her if she would be baptized on Dec 17 she said yes immediately! She already has a testimony that the Book of Mormon is true and that Joseph Smith is a prophet called by God. Sister Harris and I couldn't believe it! She's amazing and excited for December 17th. Keep her in your prayers please!

In other news our investigator Toni got attacked last Saturday and was in the hospital for 4 days. We found out later that he had also had a diabetic stroke minutes before he was attacked. He ended up with a dislocated arm, broken jaw, fractured eye socket, and he got stitches in various places. We visited him in the hospital and he was already doing a lot better thank goodness. Toni has a thing for asking God for big signs to answer his questions. Ask and ye shall receive Toni! He told us he thinks God is telling him that he should stop partying and drinking alcohol. I'm not arguing! Anyway, he's been doing great and is VERY humble now.

Poor Toni!

Another miracle this week happened at our street display. I'm a pretty self motivated person, but I don't really set written down goals for myself very often. Every week I hated thinking of goals to make because I felt like I'd just forget about them until call- ins a week later. SO my goal this week was to gain a testimony of setting goals. One of my goals was to get 4 potentials at the street display. Usually we get around 3-4 so I thought it was pretty attainable. We got 4 potentials in 40 minutes. So we decided to double our goal. After another 40 minutes we had 8 potentials. We ended up getting 12 potentials in 3 hours!!!!! We gave out 14 BOM's in 8 different languages. We've already had appointments with some of them and have more planned for next week.

Speaking of next week I won't be in Kaiserslautern anymore. I GOT TRANSFERRED TO MANNHEIM!!!!!!!! My new comp is Sister Weiler she's my first companion who is younger than me on the mission. She just got
finished being trained so I'm "Golden busting".

I'm really sad to be leaving Kaiserslautern. I cried pretty hard about it. I'm just so grateful for my time here. It gives me a lot of comfort to know that the area is better how I'll leave it than when I came. Sometimes that improvement isn't as obvious, but God had mercy on me and I know that my time was WELL spent here. I look forward to a new adventure in a new city with a new companion. I know Sister Harris will take care of K- town for me.

Love you all!
- Sister Luymes
My Buddy Viktor, member in K-town

Last sunrise in Kaiserslautern.

One of my favorite missionary couples, the Tarbets

Sis Thompson, another favorite member from K-town.