Monday, July 27, 2015

Vorwärts streben!.....Week 16 in Rosenheim

     This week was a week of physical exertion. We powered hard core! We went hiking twice, we biked a ton and did some service and we were just going hard! It was really fun. It rained at random times through the week. It wasn't quite as hot as it has been, overall the weather has been good. It was a good week all in all! We got a lot accomplished, a lot of laughing and a lot of working and it was one of those weeks you just look back on and smile cuz it was simply good. This coming up week is gonna be good too. I absolutely love having the week planned in advance. It helps things go so much smoother! We have Monday - Friday pretty much all planned. Its the best! Sunday too... and now we need plans for Saturday and we are complete! A good start for sure! 

     I'll start with Monday last week. We decided to go hiking. We picked out a peak that looked good and thought we would go and hike that. So we took a train down a little ways and got out, biked up the road as far as we could until it got too steep and then we walked. We weren't sure exactly where we were going... but found a trail and followed it. By the time we realized where we were we had missed the access point tot he ridge and were in the valley and so we just went forward to another peak. It turned out it was the highest peak in the Area.... called Wendelstein. Which translated means "Twisted Stone" and it was way cool! A great hike. Got back in good time and had some great pictures there. 

     A classic district meeting in Munich on Tuesday is always a good follow up too. I had some fun indeed. We have the coolest district ever. Its so awesome. We ate together and then we headed back into Rosenheim. Our city of dreams! 

     Wednesday we travelled a good amount visiting a 96 year old member and then an investigator on the other side of the area. Had a really good lesson with him too. We are seeing again how teaching the Gospel is really what people need in their lives to help them find reason to change. The Gospel causes that change. A change of heart is one amazing transformation! 

     We met with our friend in the Hospital again. It blows my mind seeing his weekly progress. He is doing so well! Its crazy! Powers of heaven... Manifested through the Priesthood. Life is so good! I love being right in the middle of it too! 

     Friday we got to head into Munich again and have a finding day. We come together as a District and we split into new companionships and go out finding for a time. We were in one of the most crowded places in Munich, on a nice day and there were thousands of people. I started talking with someone right off the bat at the same time Elder Evans did too and then we both lost each other within minutes haha. So we were always in sight of other missionaries, but we contacted alone. Which was something I had never done. It was really cool actually. Its a lot different, but super effective too at points cuz we simply reach more people. In one and a half hours, and 5 companionships we found 20 potentials. Not too shabby. But they are all Munich people haha, none for Rosenheim. 

     Saturday was full! We had a ward activity in the mountains! The Kaiser Range! We met up down there and then we took a chair lift up a section of the mountain and did a nice light hike. It was definitely good! Super pretty area! This mission is so beautiful! Such awesome places and people! I love it so much! 

     After this, we taught 2 lessons and that was then the day. Lots going on again, its funny how things go up and down so dramatically and so randomly. Its looking positive again in all directions. Its a good feeling! Sunday too was awesome. More and more people in church each week. We got up to 67 this week! Its nice having a full meeting :) I wore my Trachten Suit too, and that was well accepted by all the Germans! haha I love that! A good day!

     Then today, we are off to the mountains again, with a man who I helped move in on my first day here. He isn't a member of the church but is very religious! He invited us up with him. So we are gonna go! Clearly... haha Super cool! Missionary Experience and hiking experience! Best of both worlds! 

     My life is so good! I absolutely love my mission! I've been so blessed and even when I feel like its tougher... I'm blessed still! It's all part of finishing strong :) I shared Alma 37:16-17 at a point this week... I'm gonna pass that on here too!

     "But if ye keep the commandments of God, and do with these things which are sacred according to that which the Lord doth command you, (for you must appeal unto the Lord for all things whatsoever ye must do with them) behold, no power of earth or hell can take them from you, for God is powerful to the fulfilling of all his words..... For he will fulfil all his promises which he shall make unto you, for he has fulfilled his promises which he has made unto our fathers." 

     I love the part saying God is powerful to the fulfilling of all his words. Thats stuck out to me. We have the promises... we just have to do whats required to get them and then we will not be left alone. Work hard to do that, and its worth it! I have a testimony of that!

With that, I bid y'all farewell this week! Until next week I wish you all the best and a week full of laughs and happy things! Smile big! Someone is watching! 


Elder Rodgers <3 <3


Climbing Wendelstein

View from the top of Wendelstein

little church on top of Wendelstein

The Kaiser Range

The Kaiser Range

Chair lift we took up the Kaiser Range

This is an epic dessert... called Kaiserschmarrn! SO GOOD!!

Pretty lake (Simsee)

Monday, July 20, 2015

Ich schäme mich nicht!....Week 15 in Rosenheim

     Hi everyone! A new week of experiences built up, its hard to put them all together and summarize them into one email. But despite the challenge, I come again, bearing the weekly email. I was looking back on many of my weekly emails, and I came to notice that starting somewhere in Wiener Neustadt that this first paragraph became some kind of like.... a weird intro to my week. Like some of these paragraphs are like super weird... I guess it has become my way of expressing my true thoughts... or like those things that I really don't know how to express any other way. That makes no sense but I'm on a time crunch and I don't wanna think of another way to say it. In essence what this week is saying is that my mind is a massive ball of confusion. I'm a mess upstairs... Its hard bringing so many thoughts into a unified paragraph that makes sense to someone who knows absolutely no history on the subject being talked about. But yes. It wasn't quite as hot this week. But pretty warm nonetheless. Life. I love it! 

     I'll keep this one a little shorter this week, lack of ability to contribute to details. We went dooring on Tuesday evening. I have never, in my whole time in the mission field, had a dooring experience like this. We doored an apartment complex, a smaller one with only like 8 bells. We stand outside and ring and then sometimes we get buzzed in. So we were down to the bottom floor now, and this lady let us in, we walked in the apartment building and up to her door, she told us no interest and so we went back outside. As we got there her husband came out and made sure the outside door was closed so that we wouldn't be able to get into the apartment complex. 

     As he walked back to his door I buzzed the next one, happening to be his neighbour. He heard it ring from the outside and so he came speedily and angrily to the door, yelling us to disappear and get lost (in the not so nicest of words) and that we had no right to be there. He shoved us both on our shoulders and yelled more in angry German! So I said we had the right to be there... he didn't like that, pushed us more and so I said OK, we want no contention and so we left. I have never had someone physically try to get rid of me before. A new experience for sure. Elder Johnson has gotten a lot of good experiences early on! Yelled at, he had beer poured out on his legs and bag and we have been threatened too. All in all its kind of interesting, fun even... :) haha

     Wednesday was great, we got to go into Munich for our zone Training meeting. We even had some special visitors from Salt Lake City doing a new language test in order to further help them find out how they can improve their MTC's around the world and stuff. So we took a test, I actually did super well. It was a reading comprehension in German. It was super cool. The meeting went good, I was able to give my "Dying Testimony" haha given by all missionaries going home. Nothing too special. I'm not a good public speaker. 

     We then had an Exchange. I came back to Rosenheim with Elder Evans. We went and had a baptismal interview! It was a really good evening. 

     But unfortunately that won't be going through as of now, some problems arose and not there are some complications. Its hard working through things, sometimes life throws curve balls Thursday wasn't the best, as well as Friday. Prayer became a larger part of our lives. All in relation to a family in the ward. 

     But moving on, we had some other appointments as well, we biked a good 25 km on the hottest day of the week... haha and it showed. A bit of service too, down in the pretty part of our area! Lots of fun and goodness! I've gotten really good at garden work! Its still not something I'm gonna really engage in personally at home... but I like helping others with it. 

     Sunday was warm and went ok. Nothing too out of the ordinary. Got a good bit of dooring in this week, met some nice people and had some cool conversations. Lets see where that takes us! Its looking good, this week should rain a ton. I hope our plans hold through! 

     I really liked this scripture I found in Romans. Its short and applicable. I think its something to constantly ask myself... A good check up! 

"For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek." (Romans 1:16)

Let us not be ashamed of that which we love! I love you all! Have a great week! Smile and laugh! Go and do! LOVE!!

Elder Rodgers <3

Elder Evans & Rodgers

Monday, July 13, 2015

Das Evangelium ist klar und einfach!.....Week 14 in Rosenheim

     Oh man this week was totally awesome! We met some crazy new people and had some awesome experiences! The weather in general lightened up and we were able to breath and sleep at night too! It was a big change from the week before. Super good! We took the bikes for a few long rides too. One evening... We rode down a river at 9pm with a gorgeous sunset and mountains and fields. Do I not have the coolest mission ever? At least for me. It fits so perfectly! Trains, eating, finding. We seemed to have covered almost every aspect of life this week. We did so much goodness. Its a ton of fun! 

     We bought matching Germany World Cup Soccer Jerseys... We be the coolest companionship in the world! Looks awesome too! Germany is sweet!!! Monday was also awesome cuz we got a referral! Thats rare! It was a guy who referred himself, we called him and set an appointment for  Wednesday! Mondays are awesome! 

     Tuesday was a nice chill day. Drove into Munich, had our meeting in the cool basement and then ate. Its so fun being with others. They make the world so much more enjoyable. Elder Johnson telling life stories makes it so much more fun though! He has some gooders! We had to hang around a little longer to stay with an Elder there cuz the other office Elders left for an appointment and by this time there wasn't anyone else in the office and so we had to wait for the senior couple to return.

     Then, in Rosenheim, we got a call from an Italian number. A guy in English asked us if we could come and meet. Uhh yes! So we biked hard to the church and met up with this guy. So he is just up here looking for a place to stay for a while to listen to the German Language. We chatted a bit and got to know him. Cool guy, looks like he will be an English course guy, not a ton of interest in the Gospel itself. Fun though! 

     Wednesday,  a fallen out lesson in the Afternoon led us to the church. Here we did a lil bit of work and then headed to the pretty part of the area for our Lesson with the referral. We met up, and had one awesome lesson. This man is at the edge of hope. Absolutely nothing left in his life worth anything. He remembered talking with Missionaries a while ago, like years back, and so he looked us up online and got us to come meet him. 

     The lesson we had was one of the most powerful lessons about the Atonement and Christ I have ever been in. We taught pure simple doctrine from the Book of Mormon and were really able to help him see that there is a light in life. Coming to Christ is the best thing we can do. I found it cool to be able to say that as Missionaries we can't really provide much in the means of Temporal or Physical well being, but rather we are there to proving Spiritual nourishment and healing. It was a super super memorable lesson. 

     We got to meet with him again on Saturday with a member with us, the lesson itself was again very good. Its gonna come down to whether this man keeps commitments or not. If he does, its clear to see how his life will change. Powerful stuff we are dealing with, I came to realize that this week. Christ and His Atonement is pure power. 

     A couple fall outs on Thursday but it was ok, cuz we had a few lil mini member stop by's on the way and had some good time with them! We biked a good 25 km or so. Same for Friday but this time no appointment fell out, making us pedal faster to make them all on time! We biked a good 32 or so km this day. Went hard! 

     Our appointments all went super well :) First with our cooking friends! Made lunch and enjoyed Gospel learning together. Its looking positive in relation to them! Hopefully it all goes through :) Our hospital friend was next, he is doing better and better each day. Thats power in the priesthood! 

     Our last stop was with the Bishop's family! So good! It was like totally fun and super impressive. We shared a thought for the kids on prayer and Joseph Smith. The 4 year old girl and 6 year old boy knew all of this. They told us the stories, they told us why we pray and what we pray for. It was a lesson to me, that the Gospel really is simple. Its not about getting caught up in the twists and turns, its about the principles and doctrines that are simple enough for a child to understand. Then we biked home along the river, 50 minutes to the house :) What an awesome evening! 

     Saturday brought us to a service project with a new family I hadn't known before. But Sunday topped off the week for me. I had been praying through the week for opportunities to use the priesthood. A member walked in, came right to us and asked if after we would be able to give her a blessing. Wow eh! I also got to translate for a lady from Kosovo! She knew my pal Parker Stewart on his mission there! Small world eh! Then to top the day off we got a member appointment! 

Oh how wonderful it is to be a missionary! I absolutely love it. Its the most fulfilling thing I have ever done in my life. It is awesome! I look forward to that time I have left! Life is great!

I wish you all a splendid week! Thanks for the love and examples! You rock! 

Elder Rodgers <3

new matching soccer jerseys!

so close to Austria!

Favourite Friday dinner!

cooking lessons with Zvonimir!

Monday, July 6, 2015

Es gibt Wunder .....Week 13 in Rosenheim

     I guess in the end it comes down to the little miracles eh? That's what really makes it all worth it, seeing things happen that really would never happen in any other circumstance. Miracles are so present in my life! I'll start out by saying that this week was a miracle for me... I didn't get sun burnt and I didn't get heat stroke! Don't forget, miracles can be both temporal and spiritual! I don't think we had a day this week where the high was below 30°C and we had days in a row of 35, 37 & 34. I'm Canadian for heavens sake... I think this was the hottest week of my life. On the positive side of looking at it... you couldn't see sweat marks in my armpits!... Because my whole shirt was saturated.... We have been overloading on deodorant this week :) All in all... I cant go swimming yet... but I can swim in my shirt all I want! 

     Monday as you know was awesome down at Neuschwanstein! So good! Tuesday we took a trip into Munich again and had a lovely district meeting :) We have the funnest district ever. It's a hoot being here. Missionary culture in itself is one of the funnest parts of living this life. It's just so full of laughing. Fun and fun! On Monday when we went to Neuschwanstein one of the ticket controller ladies for the train saw us on the platform and asked us why we weren't all dressed up as normal. Haha so we told her about Pday and stuff and where we were headed. Then on Tuesday we saw her again and talked to her about our day and all. We ride the trains here so often that we have come to know a few of the controllers really well and I guess it goes to show that our actions are observed by many, even when we may not think so. Some of the ladies don't even ask for our ticket anymore, they just know that we have a Bayern Ticket for 2 haha. 

      Wednesday was awesome cuz we had the chance to do some service in the pretty part of our area again! (Kiefersfelden) We worked in a garden! Not typical work though. We got to cut down a ton of wicked overgrown bushes and stuff like that. Vines that had grown up into other trees. So we cut the trees down and got the vines out. It was awesome! I love being able to just go in and get rid of stuff. It's so much fun! Ok and then we got fed. I had one of the proudest moments as a father! So we were fed some soup. It had Oysters in it. Well Elder Johnson cannot do seafood whatsoever. So... he ate slow, I pounded my bowl then when she left we switched bowls and I ate all the oysters really fast and gave him his bowl back. It has other vegetables in it too... but like he could do that no problem :) I couldn't help but thinking back to The Salad Lady in Ellwangen and how Elder Oviatt saved my life so many times with food. Actually... all the Elders there did... until I grew into a big boy ;) haha It was a proud dad moment I must say! Later in the evening after a shower we went home teaching! Oh so good!

     So remembering last week... it was a fabulous week. So much goodness. Well I got the opposite end of that on Thursday. I just felt so useless. It was like... one of the worst days I've had on my mission to be honest. It wasnt easy. I woke up with no good feelings and it wasnt going well for me. I was having a rough day. A good companion helped me a lot. We talked lots. I got a blessing and then went out. The whole day really just wasn't my day. It was a good lesson though. I guess getting into a routine can be dangerous sometimes. It's always important to stay on your toes and stuff. I guess we had just been turned down so much recently in contacting that I was overloaded. Lots of thoughts. 

     But the day is by now and life has been able to pick itself back up again and go into another week! Its all good, challenges of a mission eh. Its so much more emotionally draining than I had ever thought. Happy and sad, all emotions of the extremes of both sides. 

     Friday took a big upturn with our great family of friends! It was so hot though.. but we were able to have a great appointment and being rebuilt up by the love of others.. its just what you need at times in life. I loved our appointment. It was so good :) Visited another friend later in the evening in the Hospital. He is progressing well too! 

     Saturday we got to serve again! Went with the Bishop and took out a built in storage unit out of a house and brought it to his house. Ate with them and had a nice afternoon and then had planning. Sunday came and we had a baptism in our ward of an 8 year old girl :) That was awesome! We then took off to Munich to visit a baptism of a family in the international ward :) That too was awesome! Seeing the power of the priesthood in action at multiple times through this week has increased my respect and love for it. This church is so true. 

I wanna close by sharing Moroni 7:33 with yall!...
"And Christ hath said: If ye will have faith in me ye shall have power to do whatsoever thing is expedient in me"
Faith is the basis of every principle in this Gospel. Faith leads to action which leads to miracles. Faith leads to it all. I'm thankful for that knowledge and for the time I have to strengthen the faith of others and to strengthen mine too. My mission is the best ever! 

I love you all!
Have a beautiful and miracle filled week!

Elder Rodgers <3

A nice drink after doing service

In Kiefersfelden