Monday, October 27, 2014

Love and Goodbyes.....Week 30 in Wiener Neustadt

     Hello World. I greet you today! My last day in Wiener Neustadt. Wait. That means that I've been transferred. That would be presumably correct. Is it worth me saying this early off the bat? If I do you could just get distracted and not read further and as we have all come to realize, attention is part of me. Therefore I feel not yet ready to reveal the place to which I have been transferred. I'll start out slow. 

     Many of you know me relatively well. Others perhaps not so much. Many of you I would like to get to know... but for those who are aware of who I am, you will be familiar with my deep love for God's creations, namely the mountains. And hmmm.. .I've been called to serve in the Alpine Mission, meaning that there will likely be a chance to serve in.... the Alps. 

     I'll be companions with Elder Sumsion. He is a cute little man. We have been previously acquainted with one another, setting us up for a wonderful companionship. He will be my first non Utah companion (nothing against Utah comps)  since Elder Carlson of California. But he is from Idaho... so that is almost the same right? 

     Well .... I guess I can tell you. I'll be living... in... a 4 person apartment! Ha tricked y'all. Elder Pope and Elder Bliss will be there. A Canadian among Americans. Welcome to my life. Ok, I'm running out of things to say to avoid saying it so..... I'm going to be working in Klagenfurt :-)

     In the mountains of Austria, there is a Canadian to be found. I'm definitely excited to be going there. Right in the downtown of the Alps. Doesn't suck at all! I will be living down there in the mountains of Klagenfurt :) I'm really excited too! 

     So that means this week sucked. I had to say goodbye to all the people I love! That's the worst part of being on a mission! Saying goodbye. It's so hard. Never gets easier. Not at all. I found out on Thursday morning that I would be leaving. We had stake conference this week so that means no Sunday to say goodbye to everyone. It was rough. So I had to use time wisely to plan to see as many people as I could and to tell them all bye. 

     We had meetings with Investigators and members and it is still so sad saying goodbye! I love these people. Ah! And so ya. 

     Conference was really cool though, It was a really good meeting. Everything went well, great talks and thoughts, great goodness everywhere! And an outpouring of love from missionaries and members at the end! Aww, I'll miss this place!

     I've learned a ton here, I was here for 7 months. You really come to love people in that time. Really. And it's not fun leaving. I do look forward to loving more people and experiencing the blessing of being a missionary and having an ever expandable heart! There is always room for another person :) And those who were in there will remain. 

     I wish I could express better how much I love the people here and in Ellwangen. I think about them everyday. All the time. Memories here last forever, and for that reason I am so grateful to be on a mission! 

I wish you all the best this week! Go share your love with someone :) Love is the most powerful thing I know <3

Elder Rodgers!

MTC teacher  Jared Jentzsch

Elder Rodgers, Elder Oviat, Elder Phillips

In Vienna

Monday, October 20, 2014

Uhh... Love!....Week 29 in Wiener Neustadt

     I would like to start out with quote that I found this week. I think its as true as can be. It made me happy! And here it is.... <3

               "Life doesn't come with a manual, it comes with a mother" 

     <3... YES!! Truth be told! Proclaim it! I love my mom! And you too dad, definitely! Don't feel left out. Its just that 'manual' is better replaced with 'mother'... fits the rhyme scheme a lil better. But I'd venture as far as to say that it goes both ways! 

     My biggest thing of the week comes back to The Book of Mormon! Again, always talking about The Book of Mormon. Well, I have now read it completely through, in German! And in doing so... man oh man did I feel the power of it. It was like... I couldn't put it down. It was consuming my thoughts, I was always so eager to read in it. So eager to read one more chapter. And what I think I find the coolest about it is simply the new understanding that comes when reading it in a new language. Certain ways that phrases are expressed, words used, the meaning of certain words - It all adds together to give me a deeper understanding of what really is contained inside of The Book of Mormon. There were so many lines, scriptures and chapters that stood out to me like never before. It was such an enlightening and uplifting experience. I had a fantastic time. 

     I got to spend more time in Vienna this week :) Spending some time with Elder Eldredge. We had like 3 appointments and met up with some members and man it was way cool. Working in Vienna is something different for sure. There are so many people there. So much to always be doing. It sure doesn't suck! 

     Other than that we were just working in our area this week, we got an investigator back! Back from the recovery of an operation! Yay! And she came to church again :)

     At church I had the pleasure of translating on the stand again. And it actually went so much better than the last time haha. The first talk was the hardest. He talked all about Public Affairs and how the Church works with media and in the eyes of the Public. How we too can be representatives through our actions.The 2nd was better, a report of a mission and talking about Wards :) And the last was medium, due to a summary of both talks hahaha and talked about Example to close. But I hung in there. It went well. 

     Members here rock. Simply awesome. Members all around rule, but I've been blessed, in both of my areas to have amazing members who take great care of us and are active participants in the ward and in missionary work. Its a blessing that deserves to not be overlooked. 

     I'm doing great! I've been here in Wiener Neustadt for almost 7 months now. Man oh man. I will find out this week where I'm off to next and what will be happening everywhere. Then next Tuesday will be transfer day. We shall see :) (This has been a 7 week transfer and the next one will be a 5 week transfer)

     But I got this week here and we have some great stuff set up through the week. Many members, and some other lessons. I like having weeks pre-planned. Makes it easier. Setting up appointments in advance is worth it!!!

I wish you all a wondrous week! Be kind to each other and love everyone! <3 I love you!

Elder Rodgers <3

In Vienna

In Vienna

Elder apartment in Vienna (top floor)

Milka Chocolate!

Pretty eh? 

Elder Durrant had a moment :) lol jks jks

This is a map of the zones in the mission. I found it interesting to see it so thought you might too

Monday, October 13, 2014

Liebe und Lächeln ist ansteckend.....Week 28 in Wiener Neustadt

     I sit at this chair weekly, stare at a blank screen for a few minutes and decide what word I will use to start this email. Maybe when I'm feeling spunky, I'll even venture off to think of the first sentence. Have you taken the time to notice that my first paragraphs usually have nothing to do with my week? It's because I learned in school that the first paragraph needs to really draw the readers attention in and by writing in a relatively mysterious and odd tone... I hope to be capturing your attention. Is it working? Read further... I dare you <3

     Can one become addicted to writing emails home? I love writing to you. It makes me smile. Smiles all around. I want to make the world smile. How to do this? Not too sure yet. I have a general idea. It starts one by one. I make Elder Durrant smile.. that's one person less on my to do list. I give a Sister a compliment on her finding technique... 2 down. Then I call a member and say an extra thanks for the meal they provided...3 down. And then hopefully you read this... and boom my list just got smaller again. Try it. Go make someone smile. And see that if in doing so, you don't smile too :) Because smiles are contagious! 

     Love. I haven't had a good paragraph on love for a while. Love is going to Salzburg, seeing someone that you haven't seen in 6 months and embracing each other like its been at eternity! Or going to Vienna, before we go to Salzburg, and seeing someone you haven't seen for 2 days and embracing them like its been a lifetime apart. Love is also contagious. Share your love today! 

     Well I gave it away, we went to Salzburg this week. On Saturday. And wow was it ever gorgeous! The sun was shining and smiles were radiating and love was in the air! We spent a long time on trains and in the church. Lots of learning, self made goals and a dedication to be better. 

     On a side note, we were only 5 minutes away from the main location place thing where 'The Sound of Music' was filmed. Salzburg is a fantastic place. Mountains all around too. I was in love! The train ride home too was real good! We got the 'Harry Potter' train where there is a compartment of 6. Well, the seats fold down into beds... Needless to say Elder Durrant and I put that to use and (sleeping apart from each other...) laid down and enjoyed a 3 hour ride home. That didn't suck...

     Well, the work here, in terms of teaching and finding, has been relatively slow. We have been losing people due to illness and people haven't been showing real interest... but we feel like we are now on the up rise. The attitude here is changing and we have a few awesome potentials waiting for the right time and Wiener Neustadt is on the verge of a blow up with work. This area is starting its climb now. I can feel it in the members, in us and in the people here. Staying here for 6? Wouldn't suck...

     We will know on the 22nd what happens. 

     I was in Vienna again this week working with the beast of beasts... Elder Worthen. That man knows how to get er done. We had a stellar time together. He is a person that everyone can get along with. And then some. We work well together, and we tore it up in Vienna. Life is really good. Like.. consider ... I just contacted people in Vienna. I have friends who live in Vienna. Uh... Awesome? YES! 

     Well my beloved family and friends, I bid thee farewell for another week. I hope you take the time to dive into the scriptures this week. I encourage you all to go over conference again and to really apply that what you learned. Pick one thing and go step by step for 'By small and simple things are great things brought to pass'. Make a change for the better this week. Go forward in Faith! 

I love you all <3 
Elder Rodgers <3

Look what we found in Wien!


And wow. Is that not amazing?




Train Home from Salzburg :) #Love!!!

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Eine ganze neue Welt!.....Week 27 in Wiener Neustadt

     I welcome ye all this day to my weekly email. It takes a lot to learn the language of the writer. I feel like my abilities are not yet to the point where I would classify myself as a writer, yet in the same idea, I feel like my skill in writing has indeed increased. I probably sound like a nut. It adds sugar to my life. I look forward now to the "Dreaded Email" where I have to put together the constraining thoughts that engulf my mind, for it is my chance for release. You think this sounds weird... read my journal. As Aladdin and Jasmin would sing... its... A whole new world! haha pulled that out of the back of my mind. That's why I love it, its all inspiration! Well kinda...

     I would like to start off by saying that I made it to the zoo. The oldest Zoo in the world from what I was told. And it was actually a rather enlightening time. I forgot how much I like animals. But now picture this. Mormon Missionaries in white shirts and ties and dress pants in a zoo. Then try not to judge us. We got judged! It was hilarious. It was so funny how many people were looking at us rather than the animals. It's like we almost belonged there... I'd be OK with that.. people come to see us. That's what we want isn't it? lol we win! 

     Overall, the zoo is now a recommendation from me to you, when you are in the city of Vienna. Do it! And say hi to the bears for me! 

     I then spent my day on Tuesday in Vienna :) Tausch with Elder Ringger. We had a really great day. I like Wien cuz like I said... the people come to us. People are everywhere. I sit in a tram... someone sits by me. I love it! We also spent time teaching together. We work well together. Anyone can learn from him no problem. He is a teacher. 

     The week went fast. Friday, we helped at a party here at the church. Like a wedding reception kinda thing. We were on duty! OK. The coolest thing happened. Jared Jentzsch was there. He was our MTC teacher. And its been over a year since we have seen him! Remember he was only there in the MTC for our group and so we were the only ones he taught. Elder Durrant and I were the first people from that group he saw in over a year! Coolest thing was... we could converse in German! hahahahahaha YES! Last time I talked to him in German I couldn't say a full sentence... but this time we were talking! It was so cool! Ah! He is a boss! That totally made my day! 

     And at the end of this party when we had to leave we got to take home a ton of food! Haha yes! I love that! And early the next morning we went back to help clean up everything! I love service as a missionary. It's so much fun! We ate with a member, then boom. Conference! 

     We watch one session Saturday evening and 3 on Sunday and 1 on our own through the week, usually Monday. And so on Sunday we were at the church all day! It was awesome... cuz conference rules! Clearly there are a lot of talks that are awesome and some that really take a special meaning for me.. Like they should for all of us. I loved 3 in particular. But for a reason. There are others I loved for other reasons. I love talks about love. And there are 2 that fit into that really well. But I think in my general category... there are 3 that really were boss!

Lynn G. Robbins- Totally epic!  Saturday Morning
President Uchtdorf- Priesthood Session
Jörg Klebingat-  Saturday Afternoon

     I like the forwardness of the messages. I liked how they were to the point and really direct. I loved what was said and how it was said and I think those 3 messages are so so important. It was such an uplifting conference. And by the way... 2 of them are Germans ;) 

Well. Another week gone by. Time flies when you are alive. Its fantastic! I wish you all a wondrous week. Sleep well, eat well, LOVE well! 

Elder Rodgers <3

I went to Schönbrunn (Vienna Zoo)

Uhh... lazy meercat! hahaha :)

Schönbrunn Palace

At Schönbrunn Palace

The Schloß (palace) and me :)


weird monkey...

Cheetah! rawr!

SO CUTE!!!!!

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