Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Happy New Year!

Liebe Familie! 

This is my last email from 2013! Weird to think this year is already at it's close.  Christmas Eve, Day and the 26th were absolutely incredible.  We had the opportunity to spend the day with members in our ward and ah. We have such a great ward here in Ludwigsburg!  

The Grahovac's, Sülzle's, Hoffmann's and Zimmer's had u over and man! They are all so great. Had the chance to play with dolls, puppies, crazy German games, and eat (ohmygosh) so much food.  I have literally never been so full in my entire life! haha But, never fear! Everything was delicious and it was great!
Naturally, the highlight of the week was Skyping the fam! Ya'll looked great! (Even Dad who looked a little ill)  I'm glad to hear everyone enjoyed Christmas and that's soo cool about laser tag.  That'll have to become a family tradition.. (aka I wanna play too! haha)  

It's been a while since I've included a funny story sooo here we go!
We got a referral from one of the Elders' investigators and were able to set up an appointment the day of! It was Saturday and on our way over, we just felt like we should really talk about the Plan of Salvation.  We get there, start our lesson, and she LOVES IT.  She had a pretty severe accident a couple of years ago. Due to that, she has some physical handicaps.  The idea that we could be whole again someday really spoke to her and ah! The Spirit was doing some great testifying!  (You're probably thinking right about now.. this is a miracle story.. not a funny story! Juuuust wait!)  Annnd then my great German skills come in.  Attempting to talk about how we all will die someday but, it's no problem because we'll all be able to live again with our Heavenly Father, I mixed the words sterben (to die) and töten (to kill).  All in all, Petra understood what I was attempting to say but, it was really funny nonetheless.  

Sister Brink and Harman

Other great facts, Maria ( a former investigator) came to baptism of an 8 year old boy in our ward! And Grazia (a new investigator) came to church on Sunday and loved it! :)  The work is going forth here in Germany and ah. I just really love it. Random announcement! Young men! Go on missions! Young Women! Pray about it! Feeling the Spirit work in you and seeing people really change because of the gospel is literally a priceless experience.  Ah! I just feel so grateful! Lift up your hearts and be of good cheer! 

Happy New Year, everyone! Love you!

Sister Harman

Monday, December 23, 2013

Merry Christmas

Liebe Familie,

Holy heck.  Alot happened in the past week! That's great! It's always good to hear about all the miraculous happenings, especially near Christmas time.  This past week has been marvelous!  Really really!  I only get one Christmas here on my mission so I have really felt the need to make this December, the best yet! 

We had a great exchange with our Sister Training Leaders! I was able to take over Ludwigsburg and work with Sister Jencks.  It was nice to be able to work with a familiar face! (We've gotten to know each other through Mission Leadership Counsels!)  We had loads of lessons and just tore up the town(s). haha I don't remember if I said, my area covers a bunch of small-ish towns. Sister Jencks is a riot and ah! It was just so great!
Sisters Brinck and Harman

We had our last Sunday before CHRISTMAS!  It was absolutely glorious!  We had choirs singing, great lessons, and loads of non-members at sacrament meeting. I love how Christmas really is a time to remember Christ - no matter what our religious background is. He came and did so much for us and all he asks is that we remember and follow him.  So simple, right?  And yet we make it so much more difficult for ourselves!  I just hope that everyone this Christmas season will remember why we have it! I'm pretty sure I said this all last week so I apologize if it's a bit repetitive.  Here in Deutschland, the most important day is the 24th, they call it Heiligen Abend... aka Holy Evening (Sounds better in German haha) but, it's a time to remember Christ, read the Christmas story, and to reflect on his life.  I don't know what Christmas Eve traditions, everyone else has but, I encourage everyone to read his story this year on Christmas Eve (Luke 2). It brings a special spirit into our lives!

Missionary Christmas!
Christmas Eve and Day we'll be spending with members! And the 26th. These three days are all 'Christmas'.. America has only one Christmas Day.. Germany has three haha ;D 

Merry Christmas and fam! I'll see you (LITERALLY! Skype!) tomorrow! (Somewhere from 9am - 2pm...) Broad but... hey! Builds excitement, right? 

Skype is a beautiful thing!

Love you all!
Sister Harman

We had a wonderful skype date with Sister Harman!  It was amazing to be able to talk to her and see her!  She is doing so well.  She is working hard and doing great things.  I love her attitude.  She shared this about leaving Vienna right before one of her investigator's baptismal date, "I have to have a good attitude! He's not getting baptized for me! He's getting baptized so that he can make an eternal commitment to God."  Love this girl!

Monday, December 16, 2013

Christmas zone conference, Gemeinderat, Christmas Concert and First Presidency Christmas Devotional!

Liebe Familie!
Doing well! This last week was CRAZY long but, also incredibly fast.  Makes no sense, right? haha We had a great Christmas Zone Conference, Gemeinderat (Ward Council), Christmas Concert, and listened to the First Presidency Christmas Devotional.  So lots of meetings and so many great things were said! 
To start, we did some great Genealogy work.  Looking at our family tree, WE HAVE SO MUCH TEMPLE WORK TO BE DONE. Like literally, all you have to do is print the names and take them to the temple.  I can't go to the Temple here soo I would highly encourage, you fine people to take the names of our dear family members to the temple.  What better Christmas present could be given than that of Salvation? Sounds a bit dramatic, but, it's true.  These people have been waiting for a long time and would be ever so grateful to know their family is looking out for them. :) 
Like I said, we had a fantastic Christmas Concert.  we have some ridiculously talented people here in Germany.  The music was absolutely incredible. I finally really felt the Christmas Spirit!  It was so cool to be listening to some traditional German music as well!  Wooden flutes, Bass, Cello, and some great folk-ish sounding people.  I love love love German!  It used to sound kindof weird and scary to me buuut, the more I listen to it - the more I love it.  It shouldn't surprise me, I mean it's easy to enjoy something you actually understand haha. 

Progress with the investigators is coming.  We've found loads of new people and we're working on them becoming new investigators. (really busy with Christmas time and most people here go on vacations.)  But, the members are great. I've really been able to get to know the ward and it'll just take time to really get them all but never fear! We've gotten 10 essen termine (eating appointments) for the week of Christmas haha So I'd say.. they like us :)  Keep up the good work and know I pray for you!
When asked about her concussion:  Nah. It really wasn't as bad as most. I swear! I just don't really have time to die for three weeks and then feel magically all better. It's just taking me longer to get better because it KILLS ME to sit still and I can't sleep because I can't stop thinking about all the things I should be doing to help investigators/members/companions -.-

About the Elder getting transferred. He's a lucky guy to have been in the Meeker Ward haha  I hear they've got some great families ;)  It's always hard to say goodbye to those we come to love but, when we think about all the new people we can come to love. It's an exciting and great time!  Speaking of which, I was able to Skype D this week and talk to him all about his baptism. He was so ridiculously excited and seemed so happy. It seems like he finally seemed relaxed. Understanding and peace really does come from turning our hearts to the Lord.  It was wonderful to be able to talk to him and to enjoy a small part of his Baptism!
 D's baptism 
I love you all and hope you're all getting pumped for Christmas. I know I am!!
Love you!

I haven't received any new pictures lately, so if you write to her feel free to ask, beg or plead for pictures.  ;)  Thanks, SIster Harman's mom

Monday, December 9, 2013

Getting to know my new area, investigators, members and my darling new companion!

Dear Family, Friends, and Others (You're welcome too!),
This week has been sooooo good! I can't believe I've been in Ludwigsburg for almost two weeks! Time here is just flying as I'm trying to get to know the area, investigators, members, and, of course, my darling new companion, Sister Brinck.  We had our first district meeting this past week. It was a little strange because of the eight members of our district, 4 are new to the district.  Elders Wasden and Graver, Elders Petersen and Jensen, Elders Mickelson and Smith, Sisters Brinck and Harman. Safe to say, it was great!  It's nice getting to know new missionaries and being able to learn and grown in this work!
This week, we were asked to do Genealogy!  So we got to spend a couple hours, working on our family history and indexing.  Turns out! Sister Brinck and I are related! We both go back to English Royalty and wha-la! Pretty cool!  (So you know those little girls that pretend their princesses.... WE ARE ACTUALLY PRINCESSES!) haha Nah, as Sister Brinck pointed out... we are all children of a loving Heavenly Father, ergo heirs to his kingdom!  It was really great to be able to talk to Sister Bieltiza about family history and get to know the 'regular' family history goers.  Turns out family history is bigger for non-members than members here but, don't worry! We're hoping to get our members more active in family history work too. 
As I'm sure you all are dying to hear, Destiny was baptized on Saturday!  I was told by Sister Clark that it was a wonderful service. A double baptism, with one of the Elder's investigators, getting baptized as well.  We haven't been able to Skype yet to talk about the experience but, that should be happening sometime this week.  I know I'm excited to hear from him how wonderful the experience was! 
Exciting things for the coming week, we have appointments with a bunch of potential investigators,  Zone Training, Zone Conference, and loads of less active work to do! Oh and, today, we'll be headed to Stuttgart to see another Christmas Market! Should be great!  Keep up the good work and try to remember what this Christmas season is really all about! (Hint: it's all about Christ! :))
Sister Harman

Sister Harman said, "My head is feeling almost all the way better!"  Thank you for all your prayers! 

Monday, December 2, 2013

Saying goodbye, packing, train rides, new companion and Christmas Markets!

Liebe Familie!
What a week. Seriously.  Getting D ready for his baptismal interview, saying goodbye to everyone in Wien, packing up, super long train ride, new Deutscher Ward, first Sunday in a new ward, new companion Sister Brinck, Christmas Markets, annd here we are to today!
First off, my new address is:
Kirche Jesu Christi
Sister Harman
Simanowiztraße 11
D-71638 Ludwigsburg
Secondly, D's interview was yesterday and I heard from Sister Clark (via email) that HE'S GETTING BAPTIZED ON SATURDAY!!!!!!! He' s ridiculously excited and he (and Sister Clark and several members) have promised to send me pictures as I am 8 hours via train away.  I'm really really happy for him and for the great step he is making towards Jesus Christ. D is an INCREDIBLE person and is going to make a fantastic member of the church!
Thirdly, saying goodbye was hard.  But, good. Everyone knows that transfers are apart of mission life and that eventually an end will come to every missionary's stay. That being said, it was bittersweet. I've really loved my time in Wien and I will be eternally grateful (quite literally) that I was able to meet all the great people there!
Fourthly, (incredibly organized today haha) transfers were crazy as always.  I hopped on a train with my two suit cases with all the other missionaries from Wien headed elsewhere. Including but not limited to: Elder Eaker headed home, Elder Jimenez headed to Munich, Elder Robins headed to Freiburg zone, Elder Richman to Passau, Sister Kervinen to Brixon, Elder Helbig to Augsburg, annnnnd several others. (Not really wanting to bore ya'll with the rest). Safe to say, there were several of us. In Munich, we hopped off and were talking to more missionaries (some who were goldens! So adorable! So scared haha)  I was able to talk to a bunch of missionaries my 'age' on the mission which was way cool and then took a train to Stuttgart (with, of course, all the missionaries headed to that side of the mission).  We almost missed our train from Munich to Stuttgart but, everyone made it on and all the luggage too so alles gute! haha I was laughing so hard as we formed a line throwing luggage on! (It's times like that that I remember we're all 18-22)  Finally, arrived in Stuttgart to meet the lovely Sister Brinck, my new companion!  
Sister Brinck is great. She's 21, from Cali, graduated from BYU in linguistics, speaks French and German (pretty solid), loves playing trumpet and enjoys singing in her spare time.  This is her fourth transfer and Ludwigsburg is her first area.  Then Sister Brinck and I with Elder Mickelson and his golden, Elder Smith, (who are whitewashing the Ludwigsburg Elders) took a train to Ludwigsburg and went to work! The members were really excited to meet the three new missionaries and so we were able to have loads of member appointments over the weekend.  
My first Sunday was great. We have about 120 members here in the Ludwigsburg ward and have one of the biggest primaries in Germany (or so the rumors go haha).  It really just reminded me of wards in Utah.. but in German.  So you're probably thinking whoa! Sister Harman's first Sunday in GERMAN?! What the what! She probably freaked out and died. Nope, several miracles occured and I was able to understand and talk with people just fine!  Not fluent or anything but, it all went really well!  I really am excited to get to know these members better and get to work here in Ludwigsburg.  This is a newer Sisters' area as I think I said last week so I wasn't sure what I would be going into.  After looking at the area book... there's some work to be done! We don't have any progressing investigators right now but, the Lord will provide!  It's kinda funny actually. I feel like I should be really nervous because the area is kindof dead but instead I'm just really excited.  I figure this is a great opportunity to try new ideas, and really be able to see what works and what doesn't work!  We're going to see some crazy miracles!
Ludwigsburg Christmas Market

Other than that, we're going to a Christmas Market today and I'm fairly certain I'm in love. They're the cutest things in the entire world and it's SO easy to talk with  people about Christ with Christmas on the mind! The time is so right for Ludwigsburg to just explode with success!  
Sister Harman 

P.S. Sister Harman is still having headaches but she said they are getting a little better.