“Jesus said it was….in the Bible”

Logic fails some times for a lot of people. Yesterday, a man told me "Only the Apostolic Orthodox church is true!" and then asked about that "Book that John Smith made up". I said "You mean the book of scripture that God gave to mankind?" and he said: "Well who said that it’s scripture? Joseph Smith? Of course he’d say that, he wrote it!". I inquired about his testimony of the Bible, and why he thinks it is scripture. His response is written in the above subject line.

I’m not one to "Bible Bash" but when all you do is contact all day, and don’t have much success, it is nice to actually have a real conversation with somebody, even if you are just stringing them along.

Our finding efforts are still not producing results. I don’t know what I can do better. I talk to people, but we see the same people everyday. I often tell myself "oh I’ve already talked to them this transfer", and then when I see someone who I haven’t talked to for a long time, I say "well maybe they are ready now", and they get mad at me for interrupting whatever they were doing, again. We try going to different areas, doing different things, but nothing works.

I haven’t spoken with Yulia since she left last week, I plan on calling her either today or tomorrow to see how things are going. As for Dima, he hasn’t come to our branch the last two weeks, so I don’t know what he is feeling or thinking about at the moment.

That is about our entire week. A lot of contacting, little results. It has been very discouraging for me, and I spend a lot of time thinking "what am I doing wrong?". I don’t know what I can do differently to spark the current situation.

As for Natasha, she is doing well. She is handling everything and I have seen her out and about on the street a few times and she is doing well. It is amazing what knowledge of the plan of salvation and the temple can do for you.

We are making a big push to go through and meet every member of our branch by the end of the month. A lot of inaccurate information is all we have for a lot of inactive members, so that has been good. We’ve been stopping by and doing little lessons with active members as well. We went to our branch president’s place to visit he and his wife. She made this cake that was the most amazing thing I’ve ever eaten. She told me yesterday at church that she’d get me the recipe…So Sisters of mine, I know how much you enjoy baking, I will be sending that your way!

I feel like I will be getting tranferred in a week in a half. I just have had that vibe lately. So we will be doing a lot of "goodbye" spiritual thoughts with members, so I can say goodbye and get a picture with them. I’m super excited to go to Leonid and Natasha’s on Saturday. They are the amazing young married couple in our branch that I have told you all about a few times. Well, anyway. Leonid showed up to church yesterday, in a cream colored pinstripe suit, and had gotten a haircut….buzzing the sides, basically leaving his curlyish mop on top and had not just steps on the side of his head, but two GIANT lines that when from his sideburn, around his ear and all the way down his neck line. I said "Leonid! You’re in the branch presidency, and you have a REAL job!". He just laughed and said "Well, I think it’s funny, and my wife thinks it’s hot." It was hysterical.

Our Elder’s Quorum meetings are much more lively than at home. IE: People actually talk. and here it is more of talk over each other and get off topic. If you’ve heard the Sons of Provo song "Spiritchal As Me", that is the epitome of a Pobyeda 3rd hour. Leonid drew a picture depicting a war involving tanks and people in the branch fighting over who was right. It also made me laugh.

So…I met a lady. I don’t know her name, but the missionaries know her as "I LOVE JESUS!" Lady. That is the only thing she knows how to say in English. It is a very long story, so I am copying and pasting for Elder Stanford’s email home and then adding my own thoughts in it (if you wondered why it doesn’t soudn like me).

Ha okay so there is the straight up CRAZIEST human being in the world in this city. The first time I met her was when I was signboarding. This old lady just walked up to us and rested her arm on the sign board. And stared at us. It was rather awkward so I was like… "Uhhhh… do you know how to talk?" Which sounds abrasive in English but that is just how you say it in Russian. And then she just blew up. She said "Christ was not a Mormon! Christ was not an American! Christ was the son of God!!" And we were like yeah… we agree… and Christ was not a Ukrainian either right? Ha but then she accused us for worshiping Mormon and we told her like a thousand times that we worship only Christ but she didn’t hear us over her own shouting. She spent like twenty minutes trying to convince us that Christ died for us and we were just like, "WE KNOW!!" The only words she knows in English are, "I LOVE YOU JESUS". So like mid-conversation in Russian she will randomly throw that sentence in in English even though it makes no sense in context. Aww I love it. She is the most devout Jesus worshiper ever so I guess I can give that props to her. We have ran into her a couple of times and she always just like runs up to us and sings a song about Jesus and then tells us that we are going to hell and then she runs away. Once she tried to throw away my Book of Mormon. She said that every night she prays that our church will burn down so we will start worshiping Jesus and not Mormon. [my thoughts] She said that she knew God answered her prayers when the Topol branch was closed. She also tried to tell me that she read the Book of Mormon 50 years ago….in Russian. Which is impossible, I might add. This woman is just nuts. She will not listen to us, we say we are preaching the Atonement of Jesus Christ, and she just says that we are AntiChrists who are trying to get people to worship Mormon. And then she adds that we will stand before God at the judgement and tell him we are saved by Mormon, and then we will be thrust down to hell. Someone walked up and gave us a magazine with antiMormon stuff in it (that I was really excited to read) and she stole it from me. So much for a saint. That lady is crazy.

Thank you all for the support, you are the best!

Elder McClintock

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