Monday, December 30, 2013

Frohe Weihnachten

Our Christmas tree and presents
Frohe Weihnachten  (Merry Christmas)
Merry Christmas!! And a Happy New Year for this coming week!
It was so great to see and talk with you on Wednesday, so glad that all worked out great and we had that time to talk. I have grown to love you guys more than I can say over the months I have been out and it sure is neat to see you and then keep going on and the love just keeps on growing. I love my family!
It was  great week of Christmas and its pretty neat that here in Germany they celebrate 3 days of Christmas. America has got to catch on because it is so cool that they just have these 3 days where stores are closed down and everyone can just spend time with the family! Monday we started out first actually meeting with Marius and then again on Saturday and he is progressing very well, we are hoping (cross your fingers) to start the Stop Smoking Program with him this week he might be leaving for a couple days with family for the new year but we are hoping to get that started. He is so diligent at coming to church and I love it, he gets himself there by walking a good 25 minutes and even though its all in German is loves it! Its neat to see his progress in German as well, I have been translating for him at church and he actually was understanding quite a bit which is a great blessing! When we go over he shows us how he has been studying on the computer and it has really paid off! 
Tuesday Heilige Abend (Christmas Eve) was a great day as we were invited over to a families house for that evening but before we went we had a little time and so us 4 in Rosenheim went into city center, picked a good street with a good amount of people walking by, pulled out our little German hymn books and started singing Christmas hymns. It was a little intense at first but we got into it and loved it, I believe most people did too! We had people stopping in cars and listening for a bit, people taking photos and so on! I absolutely loved it! I love how we have many ways to testify of Christ and it was a perfect day to sing praises to Jesus Christ. A good night with the member family and we actually had the opportunity to go to a Catholic mass because their daughter was playing in the orchestra. It was a neat experience especially here in Germany on Christmas but I am so glad we have the truth and ours is his church. 
Wednesday (Weihnachten)we spent the day at a less actives house. We played games and with the kids and it was a great day as we were also able to talk! The neatest thing though was they came to church on Sunday! Oh man, I loved seeing them there and they fit right in, I hope they stay for good! 
Thursday (Zweite Weihnachten) we went to the Bishops house and spend some time with his family and had a good time there. He has a neat family and I just loved spending time with them and the rest of the members this rest and strengthening our relationship which is so key! The rest of the week was great as we also met with another less active family that is so close in coming to church, they have a car but its an hour drive and they seem to always have something but we were keep working with them and get them there. Its so great that we have a new year right around the corner to look back on what we learned and go forward in faith and confidence for success.
One last neat thing that actually just happened today, we were in the bus going to get groceries and I noticed an older couple that we had talked to about 2 months ago. We had made out an appointment but when we went they werent there and we tried going back and they were never there. So neat to see them again and hear that he had actually had been in the hospital but would love to still meet. Everything has a right time and right place but the closest thing was when I was talking to him, his wife was talking with someone behind her and I didnt catch it all but the women was asking questions about our church and the wife was sticking up for the church and giving correct info and being very positive about the church. Oh man I loved it! They are such a neat couple and I hope we make some progress!
Love you with all my heart, hope you have a wonderful week and a happy new year!!
Much love,

Elder Jerman
2013 Elder Smith and I standing right before going into our kitchen with the few snowflakes we made, (we had just a little time to fit in making some) :)

Saturday, December 28, 2013

from Sister Seamons

Just had to tell you how sweet your son is.  I received a thank you card about a week ago from him thanking us for having such a great son that he could be companions with.  Wow, what a great missionary-----so thoughtful!  We are so thankful for missionary's like him that are such great companions with OUR son!  I know Joseph was very blessed to have had him for his second companion!  
I didn't get to hear from Joseph on Christmas and I'm ready to call Pres. Miles and complain!!!!!!!   I think I got ripped off.  Anyway, Merry Christmas, a little late!
So.....I decided to quit feeling sorry for myself and emailed the missionary president and he called Joseph and we will talk to him at 5:00 a.m. Monday morning the 30th of December!  Can't wait!!!!!!!!  Yey!!!!!!!

Monday, December 23, 2013

The Prince of Peace

Its been great hearing from you today and it gets me excited for Wednesday. I cant believe we will be able to Skype and how fun it will be. It has just been a great time to be a missoinary and we have had a great week. To start things off on Tuesday we had a zone Christmas Devotional and President and Sister Miles came as well. At the beginning we played chimes to different Christmas songs, we then discussed tradtions and the many different ones we have. It was a great time to looked back on memories of family traditions and I am so grateful for all the wonderful ones we have! We had an white elephant exchanged and then ate lunch. Afterwards President and Sister Miles spoke with us about having Christ image in our countenance by developing Christlike Attributes. How neat it is that we can share the light of Christ to others even through our example and who we are and the way we live and serve others. It was a great meeting. We had German class that night with Marius and we actually translated passages out of the Book of Mormon, it was perfect. We met with him the next morning and had a good lesson and it was neat to have him share and open up about his life and how he has developed faith. It helped strengthen my faith and I love how our faith can be strengthend through others and hearing the words of Christ. We committed him to come to our Stop Smoking program on Friday but he had family and coudnt make it. This week we will committ him for the beginnig of the year so he can be ready for baptism. It was pretty neat because we still did this program with an investigator from the other two Elders. Its an awesome program and it has things you have to follow exactly or you cant go on. Its neat we can be there and help these people stop this bad habit but they have got to want it and its their descission we are there for support and helping them when they want it. It gives one step where they have to bring their cigarettes and crush them and this investigator couldnt do it. We had to end and will just love and try it again once he is ready. Its a great progam. 
We got in contact with Samra this week! She has been working everyday for the last while and she has the Christmas break off and so we met with her just yesterday and had a great lesson. We had to move her baptismal date because it was going to be for this weekend but since we havent met lately we had to move it but its so neat she still has the desire to get baptized. We called Rita this week and no answer but got a text the next day that she will be out of town at her parents for the weekend and on to Budapest for Christmas. Saturday night we wanted to just drop off a Christmas card and so her light on so we rang and she got to talk with her just at the door step quick and wished her a Merry Christmas. After the new year we will see how she really is doing and if we can reset a new date with her. 
We had a neat experience with a potential we found last week. We called him up this week and he said he wanted to meet and he said, name a place and time and I am there. So this next weekend after Christmas we will be meeting with him. Its great that there is always people out there ready to hear the gospel. Also this week we had the chance a couple times to sing Christmas songs. I love it and especially Bayerisch Christmas songs! We sang with the other Elders in our district and some members at a old folkes home just like in the atumn. We also sang in Sacrement meeting with the choir, we had a great meeting with some muscial numbers as well. Such a neat time to ponder and think about Christ during beautiful Christmas music. 
I wünsche euch eine frohe Weihnacthen! I know Christ is the Redeemer and Savior of the World. He is the Prince of Peace and through him we can feel that peace especially in this wonerful time. 
Hope you have a great week and I will see you on Wednesday!! 
Love you so much,
Elder Jerman
 Elder Smith and I doing service in clothes that were given to us to do service                      - we are looking good!

Monday, December 16, 2013

Book of Mormon Miracle

 Hey Family!
Oh my oh my, this is just the most special time right now and I hope it will live on. I hope you just take every moment of it and love it. We are so blessed and its a wonderful to give thanks and serve others. We have had a great week and have seen some great miracles this week. To start off with I would like to talked about the importance of goal setting. It really does make a difference and I just lived a week of just that. Elder Smith and I made the goal at the beginning of the week that we would give out one Book of Mormon everyday. We hadnt done so well in the past and really wanted to reach this goal. It was so neat as days went on with every experience we had each day in giving out our Book of Mormon. They were all miracles in them self. Thursday it was neat as Elder Smith has grown the confidence and stopped a younger guy and we started a conversation and he ended up accepting the Book of Mormon. Friday was really neat as we didnt have much time that day to do much contacting as we were in Neuötting with the other Elders as we practiced with the members there for our singing performance we will be doing this week. We had a good practice and Im pretty darn excited to sing some carols and these Bayerisch carols are something else Ive got to say, it should be great though. Anyway so we come back to Rosenheim and come out of the train station and usually go straight into the city. We both knew we had still our Book of Mormon to give out for the day and as we came out I had the feeling to take a right. I knew that not many people walk on that street and we would have a better chance with more people if we went right into the city but it came again to go right. So we went and didnt see anyone on the street, then came up on the other side of the street someone and we decided to go across and talked to him. He too accepted a Book of Mormon and it was just the neatest thing ever! I love how we can make achievable goals that we want to achieve and so we are concentrated on them throughout the week and then the neat thing is that only with the Lords help our they achievable. Saturdays unfortunately we didnt give one out as we had our Ward Christmas Party and a couple other appointments where we didnt have the time but we still did our best in doing so with the time given. But the week wasnt up yet we still had Sunday to give out the book for that day and then also forSaturday. In our time of contacting the first person we talked to accepted the Book of Mormon and then lets just say we had a lot of turned down invitations and wasnt looking like it was going to happen. With 15 minutes left we decided to prayer and asked for the help we needed to give out this last Book of Mormon in our goal we had set for the week. As walking home and our last person we talked to we had the opportunity to share our testimony of how this special book has helped out in our life and promised the same blessing for them. They accepted and we had done it! As we set righteous goal and trust that the Lord will help as we asked for it, miracles will happen!
The Christmas Party was great as we had some non members and less actives there. It was a neat time with them and the members. We actually got a surpise sack of gifts from the ward! It was so nice, I will have to send you a pic of our tree and many presents. The 4 Elders were called up and on the spot they asked us to sing some American Christmas songs so off we went with we wish you a Merry Christmas, Jingle Bells, and Rudolph. It was a great time and ward activities are so great for non members. Unfortunately Rita and Samra wasnt there but Marius did make it. Marius is making great progress as he has come to church the last 4 weeks in a row and we have been meeting with him through out the week. This week we will be starting a Stop Smoking program with him and we hope that goes well! Updates on Rita, we went by Tuesday night to see if we could make out an appointment and she said that she would like to take a break. She said we could call in a week so we will be giving her a call this week. Her son came up for the weekend and this week we left it up to the Lord and everyone prayers. Thanks for all your prayers for her! Samra has gotten a job and is working everyday and it has been hard to meet with her. We will probably changed her date as we wont be able to teach everything we need to but the desire is still there! We received a referral this week from Headquarters and went by and we have an appointment this next week! We hope we see success from that as its neat that they show the beginning interest to meet. Its an exciting time and there is always those ready to hear the gospel. What a great gift it is especially at this time of year to share the restored gospel of Jesus Christ. I know its true and I know it helps everyone in every situation.
Love you all so very much and hope you have a wonderful week.

Elder Jerman

Monday, December 9, 2013

Hope on

My wonderful Family!
What a wonderful time of year, oh man I just love everyday of it! There is so many great things going on at this time and what a special time of year. Its especially special I think because of Christ and how we can remember him and give service to others. That service spirit is that Christmas spirit and we all are involved! I love it and I love that we can be members of his church and take his name upon as we serve and do our best everyday in becoming Christlike. I love how its a life long process and we can always be improving our Christlike qualities, our service to others and the knowledge we receive. I love CHRISTmas! 
Well it has been quite the week, lots of highs but with that (just like life) there comes the lows. We will start on Tuesday  we visited Rita and actually had an exchange with our District Leader so we could do the Baptismal Interview, that went great and we also shared a great lesson with her. That night we had Ward Council and it was an exciting time to be planning for the upcoming things as we also have less actives progressing and actually a family we are working with called the Ojo family from Nigeria, the father just got the Priesthood last week and they are making progress to get to the temple. So it was a great night with the Leaders in the ward talking about the progress of the ward at this time. I enjoyed it very much so. Wednesday rolls around and we meet with Rita and our Ward Missionary Leader and make out the schedule for the Baptism which was way awesome and it was a great exciting time. We go by on Thursday with Bischop and asked her how she is doing and feeling and she wasnt doing so well. She has decided to not get baptizedon Sunday. We are very saddened for her and its even tougher because we know she knows its right and that she is ready at this time. She explained to us further that she knows it is right as well and that baptism is needed but the church part of it is her concern. Especially with her family she feels she cant do without their support and love. It sure is tough and we hope she will come around, I know she will! Its been neat to learn about how the Lord knoweth all things from the beginning, and he prepares a way to accomplish all his works among the children of men. ( 1 Nephi 9:6) Even when we dont know why we can trust in the Lord he does and everything will work out in his time. We are still praying for a miracle and still have the hope. We will not give up and we will press on in faith. 
Our other investigators are doing pretty good, we have met with Samra again this week and its so neat to see her progressing as she reads in the Book of Mormon and what was really cool is she said how she has realized when she is at church as well just being around the members she has realized that there really is more of a purpose in life than just working, eating and sleeping. So neat the example we can all give without even knowing about it, just how we live. Marius are other investigator has been coming to church the last 3 weeks in a row and we have made a baptismal date with him for the 12th of January! He is a very humbled man and we have a great relationship as he is one that comes to our German class. That is going well and we usually have Marius and then the Vantic family (Samras family) coming to that. Who knew I would be teaching German in Germany instead of English but its great to help those learning German as well from around Europe. 
Enjoy this great time of year where we can give back to Christ for all he has given us. I love that we can serve and give that joy, hope and light we have experienced in our lives and give it on to others. Even when times get hard we hope on and trust that after all we can do we will receive his grace and help! (2 Nephi 25:23) 
I love you all very much and hope you have a wonderful week! 
Elder Jerman
Elder Smith and I up in the mountains

Up in the mountains over looking the lake of Chiemsee and the city of Bernau

Monday, December 2, 2013

Its December

 Hey Family! 
Sounds like you had a great Thanksgiving down in sunny St. George. Great to hear from you and also see some pictures. You guys are sure growing up and great you could spend some good time together with the family. It was a great week here in Rosenheim. We are seeing miracles happen and I am so grateful for God and his wonderful work. Elder Seamons had his last couple days here in Rosenheim and Wednesday we met one last time with Samra and Rita. It went good but they were sad to see him go. We actually stayed a little too long and had to run to the train station to catch a train to Munich but we missed it. It was actually just me that missed it! We got the approval that Elder Seamons would stay the night in Rosenheim with the other two Elders and I would ride by myself to Munich. It was a little weird but just kept myself busy speaking with people on the train and it worked out perfect because I took another train a little later but it was meant to be. I spoke with a lady actually from Canada that was on a trip her and it was her last day before coming back, we had a good conversation and at the end I gave her a card and asked if she actually knew any Mormons and she said she used to be one. Neat to be able to talk with her and hopefully sparked something from within. Also on that train ride, talked to a women who met with the Missionaries 5 years ago in another city. There are people out there who have received the message and have not expected it but there is always a way the Lord is preparing them for the right time!

Wednesday night getting into Munich was great as I saw my companion from the MTC that I hadnt seen since that first day, so fun to catch up with him and other missionaries. We went to the mission home and met the Goldens and had dinner and then all sat in a circle and us trainers got to introduce our area and then a Golder was assigned to us. Elder Jordan Smith from Delta Utah is here in Rosenheim with me!! He is real great and its pretty crazy as he is just 18 years old just out of high school. We will have a great time together though and learn lots together, I am excited to learn, serve and love. Its kind of neat looking back to my first days here in Germany and seen the progress both from German and my knowledge of the Gospel. I am so thankful that we are here on this earth to learn and grow everyday!
So to the miracle part now, the good part! Its been neat how its all played out how its all played out and also what I have been studying. The enabling power of the Atonement is a real power and we can and do receive both persistence and strength not to get out of a trial but instead what we need to make it through it. As we pray and fast with faith, I am here to stay that miracles do happen. We have both in our mission as a whole and also in our ward prayed and fasted together for missionary work in this last little bit. I have seen the power of unity in it. With Samra and her family that were having problems staying in the country and money problems, everything worked into place how it needed to and they are able to stay here. With Rita as we just met with her yesterday night she told us how her doubts and worries are gone and she feels confident and ready for this in her life. She said, "I want that" as we talked about baptism and the promised blessings from it. Its so neat how the Atonement has the power to changed a persons heart and desires. We are so excited for Rita and cant wait for her to be baptized, what a special time for her especially in this Christmas season. This message of the Gospel of Jesus Christ brings joy and hope to all who listen, believe and act. Let us all strengthen our belief in this wonderful time of year. I love you all and hope you have a great week. 
Liebe Grüße,  (It means literally, "dear greetings."  Very similar to "warmest regards." Or something like that.)
Elder Jerman
November 2013,  Mission Home to pick up new "Golden" Elder Smith

Trainer/1st companion, Elder Merkley, Elder Jerman, new "Golden" Elder Smith

Elder Jerman and Elder Miller (from AF and just out of Preston, England MTC)            So fun to have transfer day and see other elders also getting transfered that haven't seen each other for a while and meet back together. Munich train station is also ready for Christmas!!