Monday, April 25, 2011

Happy Easter! 4/25/2011

Countryside in Bila Tserkva

More countryside in Bila Tserkva

Child's playground in Bila Tserkva
More playground in Bila Tserkva  

Easter here is a pretty big deal. Ukraine is basically a land of holidays, always celebrating something and Easter is no exception. Here are some of the things they do to celebrate it: first off, there is a special greeting that you use in Ukraine only for Easter христос воскрес (Khristos Voskres) which means"Christ has risen" and when people say that  to you you respond by saying бо істинно воскрос (Bo istunno Voskres) which means "For he really did rise". People get really into that. It's pretty cool. That's a greeting that everyone uses on Easter. Other Easter traditions are the Easter cake that they sell... everywhere. Elder Carnes and I bought one and tried it out. It wasn't too bad. Anyways, there was kind of an Easter miracle that happened. First off, when we arrived at church there was no one there, except for us, the branch president, and our investigator, Vadim. It stayed that way for a while. Elder Carnes and I thought, wow.. this isn't gonna be much of a Sacrament Meeting. But then like right at ten(when church starts) everyone came flooding in. Weird. Anyways, the cool thing was a random man came in halfway through Sacrament Meeting. Right after the meeting was over he promptly got up and headed for the door. I ran after him and stopped him and started to talk to him. His name was Nikolay. He seemed pretty interested and said he wanted to meet. He gave me his number. Other than that, the streets were pretty empty that day, which didn't make much for contacting.

So, as for a car? We do have a mission car. I have no idea what gas prices are here. Probably ridiculous because no one in Ukraine drives a car. Like the majority of the people, we walk and take public transportation. I kinda forget what it's like to drive a car.

This week has been pretty difficult like last week. We dropped basically all of our investigators. We've been trying hard, but we just can't seem to find anyone new. We haven't even found a new investigator this transfer. But we remain optimistic that we will find someone this week. Well, Bila Tserkva use to be the 2nd most dead area, right behind Lutsk. But to everyone's shock and dismay, Elders Marsaw and Woodberry got a baptism in Lutsk this last week. Now, Bila Tserkva is the 1st most dead area in the mission. No one thought it could be done in Lutsk. But it was done. I guess it stands as a testimony that you can baptize anywhere.  But, I'm not sure what I'm lacking. It sure has been a very trying transfer.  Today we had to do service, so that's why this e-mail is a little late. We went out to the village to help a member plant potatoes. It was a day full of back-breaking manual labor. Digging up the earth, filling it full of cow manure and shoving a potato spud in there. It took us all day. Our Branch mission leader, Pasha, was with us and joking and laughing at us by saying "Wow I'm proud of you.  You guys are shoveling poop and planting potatoes like true Ukrainians!" At the end of it all, Sister Vira, who was the owner of the land where the potatoes were planted, made us a giant feast. We had this potatoe borsch, some coleslaw, chicken sandwiches, and little pancakes. Oh, and for dessert we had herbal tea, cookies, and cake. I'm stuffed and dead tired.

Well,  I hope you all have a good week.
Love you!
Elder McEntire

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