Monday, April 27, 2015

Small Town Life

Hey guys,

Orhei does feel like a small town because it is pretty small haha. We walk just about everywhere and it's all super close. A ton of random people know us here. I don't know exactly how many people we have in the branch, probably around 20, but the most Ive seen is about 10 who attend. 


This week we went out to a little village to see our Branch President. It's right by the village named Buda. haha. We taught some English, we found someone who is interested in learning more about what we believe and we are having a great time. 

The translation for buda is crapper haha
President Ivory will be coming up this week to Chisinau for a zone conference that we will attend. 

The shoes aren't done yet. I thought they would be done a lot sooner but apparently he ordered more leather for the shoes or something. I will definitely take a pic when I get them though.

That's it for this week, more to come the next. Hope you have a great week!

Elder Houk

A ride through town

More fun at the soccer field
 Elder Temus

Monday, April 20, 2015

Pick A Language

Hey Guys,

So we didn't celebrate Easter again this week, but most of Moldova did. They went to the cemeteries and "celebrated" with the dead. 

This week we put up a bunch of posters and advertised on FB for our English classes, so we are hoping that we will be able to teach a ton of people. We start tomorrow. 
Our English posters. The print shop said they don't have time to cut our posters (which is their job, lol)
So we did it ourselves. Don't want to cut my tie off. haha
Moldovan Flag in the back.
It's definitely weird being in a companionship where we both speak a different language. Don't worry he knows English. Some people that we talk to are like, So you know Romanian and you know Russian, How do you communicate!? It's pretty fun though. People here tend to know both languages and they have their personal preference on which on they like to speak. So it'll just be half in Romanian and half in Russian. I can kind of understand the concept of what's going on, and my companion can understand Romanian a little because he's been around it his whole mission. So we find a way to both talk. 

Church was the most interesting though. I gave a talk this week in Romanian and the next speaker gave it in Russian. Then 2nd hour was in Russian, but one girl knew Russian and Romanian, but likes to speak in Romanian. So my comp would translate whats going on in the lesson and then the girl would answer something in Romanian and then everyone in the room would switch over and start talking in Romanian and I would translate, and then the lesson would get back on track again in Russian. Nobody can pick a language! haha

So I have to say that it's a small city, but I'm happy over here. We live right next to a soccer field and we go running every morning on the track and sometimes for dinner we even get a show!

That's all for this week, I hope you have a great one!

Elder Houk
Старейшина Хаук (in Russian)

View from apartment  
This dude is Vasile Lupu. There is one main street in Orhei and its named after him. I don't know who he is. A famous dude here.

She's watching... 
The sunset yesterday. Sunday night.

Monday, April 13, 2015

Serving in the Smallest City is Gonna Be Big!

Chisinau Moldova
Hey Guys,

So first things first, transfers happened, and I got transferred! I am already here and I'll be serving in Orhei! This is the smallest city in the mission and in the Eastern Europe area (I'm pretty sure) It contains 30,000 people. But wait, that's not all. I will be serving with a Russian speaking missionary (from America) who doesn't know Romanian! And it's only him and I in the whole city! haha. So, this is going to be pretty fun. 

Okay, but now back to last week. On Sunday, we celebrated Easter and got to go to midnight mass again. It was really cool. This year I made it home with my candle, unlike last year. So my sins will be forgiven! (according to Orthodox belief, if I am correct)

Receiving the light of Christ

Taking food to be blessed
 Many people bring all their food to the priest to be blessed so that they can eat in the morning. They fast longer than a month I believe, probably 40 days. I don't know specifics but certain days you can't eat certain things such as meat or other things. But after Easter they are done fasting and eat early in the morning around 5 or 6 am, depending on the family, after it was blessed. You can also buy pre-blessed food if you so desire, but it will cost you a good amount of more money. Hristos a inviat! "Christ was resurrected" Adevarat a inviat!"Truly, he was resurrected."  I will be hearing that saying for the next couple weeks, but in Russian as well.

I picked up a bracelet with some of the pictures of Jesus and other Saints that the Orthodox people use. Earlier in the week I grabbed some Easter eggs made of wood as well. 

Orthodox pictures of Christ
wooden Easter eggs
I got to help out a member this week by carrying some cinder blocks for him up some stairs at a construction site where he works. Reminded me of working back home with my dad.

The weather here is B-E-A-utiful. It feels like Cali now. Its great! 

We had an Easter campaign where we gave out free dvds with 4 films inside. 2 about Jesus Christ. 1 about Humanitarian work form the church here in Moldova, and 1 about the members here in Moldova. 

The Russian branch here had a baptism, which we got to attend and it was awesome. Trifan is a super cool dude. I had no idea what was going on because it was all in Russian, but, of course, the spirit was there and it was a joyous event. 

Well, that is it for this week. I hope you guys are doing great and that you have a great week!

Elder Houk

Midnight Mass in Moldova

Monday, April 6, 2015

He Lives...Now!

Hey guys,

We had breakfast with the senior couple (the Flanders) on Sunday. 
Such nice people. It was great.
This week, we didn't celebrate Easter! haha. The reason is because here in Romania and Moldova, we celebrate it this Sunday! The 12th! But I hope that your Easter was GREAT and that the Easter Bunny came to everyone's house and the spirit of the Lord was with you guys. 

Here, Easter can be a little sad because everyone is like "Jesus died." But our message to everyone is that He Lives...Now! He's here to help us and he knows exactly how to help you perfectly, because he's felt what you feel. 

In this great season, I would just like to say that I love my Savior and I am more than grateful for what he has done for me and you. 

I love you all and hope that this week is great!
Elder Houk

A cool view from Malldova (it's a mall in Moldova) pretty cool name right.

24/24 what does that mean!??? They use it like 24/7 hahaha 
These Elders from another area know how to bring home the bacon. Ham for Easter anyone?