Monday, August 29, 2016

Loving Lauenburg, Studying in German, and Meeting a Member from the Ukraine

August 29, 2016

   The area I am in is the Hamburg Zone for the Germany Berlin Mission but it is not part of the state of Hamburg. I am in Schleswig-Holstein which is the state right under Denmark! (mom note: Elder Fisher’s dad served a mission in Denmark)

   We continue to have success too, I love this place. This area is different, I miss my last area but this area is probably going to get the best I could possible give because of my language and work skills I have learned on my mission until this point. I have met a lot of members, and we are trying to build a really good relationship with the members. This week we taught people, tried a few new ways to find people interested and we had fun so that is really what matters I guess. For p-day we are planning on going by on some people but for the most part we are just going to chill.

   Yesterday going to church we were sitting in Sacrament meeting and a man walks in that can't speak German and we started translating for him and we got talking with him about who he is. He has been a member for 3 years now and is from Ukraine and he couldn't find the church for a month so he decided to start praying, and after a month of prayer, yesterday he had the feeling to get on his bike and start riding it to Lauenburg, then he had the feeling to turn right on the street where the church is!! It was such a big testimony builder that God does answer prayers in miraculous ways.

   My companion and I have a lot of things common, we like food a lot, his birthday is in November, he is my first companion (age wise) younger than me and it is only by five days too, we both like to work a lot, and we want to change the area for the better. He graduated from high school and worked before the mission. My new companion does cook, and very well, we enjoy food a lot, but we do not over eat ever. I was telling my companion this week about Blue Hills nursery and the wall of root beer, it was something I haven't really thought about since home I think.

   I don’t have anyone in this district that was in a former district, but my companion was trained by a person in my MTC district. We are on bikes every single day, I feel like I have saddle sores from being on the bikes so much.

   Last week, the Greek food was gyros fries a salad and a Greek sauce. Mama Baumgartel made us sweet and sour sauce with ground beef over noodles also very good. Yesterday we ate at a person’s farm and we had very German food, rot kohl, potatoes, and brat wurst. It was sssooo good.

   This past week, I studied how to become a better teacher in Preach my Gospel this week and it was really good and also studied the part of the Book of Mormon when the wars are starting, I read a little slower now, because I just read everything in German, I understand it all, it just goes a little slower.

   Scripture of the week: Alma 44:1 “And it came to pass that they did stop and withdrew a pace from them. And Moroni said unto Zerahemnah: Behold, Zerahemnah, that we do not desire to be men of blood. Ye know that ye are in our hands, yet we do not desire to slay you.

   Quote of the week: "the laughter of the world is loneliness pathetically trying to reassure itself" Neal A. Maxwell

Love you and hope that you have a good week!

Elder Spencer Fisher

Thursday, August 25, 2016

Lauenburg, A New Bike, and Dinner Appointments

August 22, 2016

   I traveled to Lauenburg this week by train. Yes, I am in Lauenburg on the Elbe. (mom note: there is another city called Lauenberg closer to Hannover). When I got to Lauenburg, I met my companion (Elder Riggs) and we talked about the area and all the people in it.

   I am pretty much recovered from the accident, we are on bikes in this area as well so I kinda have to get over it, not that it shook me or anything, but I didn't want to ride a bike for the rest of my mission.

   It is pretty good here, we are working hard and have already seen a lot of success in our five days together and we are expecting to see a lot more in our time together. The companion is really good, he wants to work pretty hard so I am helping him with that as well.

   This past week, we met with a man and his two sons who are 10 and 8 years old.  They are super cool. The dad is less active.  It was our first time teaching them and it was really good—and his sons want to be baptized!  Then on Saturday, the dad (who is Greek) wanted to make us some Greek food, which was unbelievably good.

   Later in the week, we had to go to a city called Celle (?) and get bikes so we can actually get around our area so we did that.  We talked to a guy on the way down to Cells who is from Cape Verde and his whole family is full of members but he is not, so we got his address and number and gave it to the missionaries in the respective areas.

   We have a ward here in Lauenburg, it is really nice to have 3 hours of church.  The ward has about 60-70 active members. On Sunday, I met the ward and gave my testimony as well.  We ate at a Sister Baumgartel’s house and at the end she said we can just call her Mama Baumgartel, so that was good to hear. She is no replacement for you though, so don't worry.

   On Sunday we rode our bikes an hour one way to go and teach a family who all want to be baptized, they have to work on some stuff but they all want to be baptized! That was probably the best lesson of my entire mission.

The weather hear is pretty similar to the weather in Minden I would have to say.

   Scripture of the week: 2 Nephi 31:5-6 “And now, if the Lamb of God, he being holy, should have need to be baptized by water, to fulfil all righteousness, O then, how much more need have we, being unholy, to be baptized, yea, even by water! And now, I would ask of you, my beloved brethren, wherein the Lamb of God did fulfil all righteousness in being baptized by water?”

   Quote of the week: "make sure these missionaries have fun!" Elder Ballard at our mission conference last year

   It really sounds like you had a busy week, I bet it was really fun and it looks like you had lots of good times at Sequoia. I really want to go to Sequoia with you guys next year! I also cannot wait to eat moms cooking!! I miss it so much. I love the food here, but moms cooking is by far better! I can make 4 more months though.

   I hope you have a great week and that you enjoy the last little bit of summer while you can too! I miss you and wish you the best!

Elder Spencer Fisher

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

It's Transfer Time...and saying good-bye to Minden

Pictures from a district Pday a few weeks ago.
August 15, 2016

   It is transfer time, and I am transferred and after almost six months, I will be leaving. A part of my heart will stay here as well as in all of my areas, but I was really ready for a change to happen. I will miss the members here in Minden the most, I really just feel like I am part of the ward here.  I will be getting transferred to a place called Lauenburg, there are about 10,000 residents and it is a car area, the only problem is that neither of us have a German driver’s license, so we will see how this works out. My companion will be Elder Riggs, he is from the same town my current companion is from. 

   You were saying how hot it was but I could do for some heat right now.  We do not have any of it really, it just feels like we had summer for 2 weeks and it is already fall again, and it will be colder in my next area as well.

   This week was okay but I also got into a bicycle accident Sunday morning going to church.  Before you ask, I am okay for the most part, the seat on the bike was kinda wiggly and it fell off on the way to church and then I followed it down. I landed on my knee and my hand, I am okay. I got out with only a couple scraps and a bruise.  However, my suit pants are not okay, they are a little beyond repair. I might need to get a new suit in the coming weeks or at least find the pants that match my suit coat. The bike will be getting repaired. 

   Well, today since I got a little hurt yesterday, and it hurts a little bit to walk, we decided it best to kind of relax a little bit.

   I studied a lot about money this week and handling emotions a lot I guess, it might not sound super spiritual but it was interesting and was spiritual.

The Bielefeld District
   Scripture of the week: Alma 36: 30 “But behold, my son, this is not all; for ye ought to know as I do know, that inasmuch as ye shall keep the commandments of God ye shall prosper in the land; and ye ought to know also, that inasmuch as ye will not keep the commandments of God, ye shall be cut off from his presence. Now this is according to his word.”

   Quote of the week: "The important thing is that you qualify to be useful workers in society." Gordon B. Hinkley


Elder Fisher with the Branch President's Parents

Elder Fisher with the Branch President and his wife

The District
I hope that you have a good week and that you guys will be safe up there in the mountains and have lots of fun with the trees. There will be more things to write in the coming week but for now I will sign off.


Elder Spencer Fisher

Zone Conference, Cold Summer Weather, P-day Plans

August 8, 2016

   Well that is interesting about the weather (mom note: we were having a heat wave), I have been tempted to turn the heater on at night here a couple times now.

   That is cool about Elder Hefner (knowing his return date) that means you guys will probably get my flight plans next month! Exciting stuff!

   This week we had a conference in Hamburg, and there was a member of the Third Quorum of the Seventy there. It was good. We stayed the night with elders serving in an area that my companion has served in before. We mostly learned about how we can just reach a little bit more and trying to reach our full potential. It was pretty good, I took a few notes while we were there.

   We actually did not have any service this past week, we did teach the young mother with the baby again and it was good, however the baby just runs around the whole time and he can be distracting.  We also met a former investigator from Bangladesh his week and he seemed pretty cool, he is a younger guy that can speak like 4 languages!

   For breakfast I usually eat a slice of bread, nice bread from the bakery, with cream cheese smeared on top, then a slice of cheese and a type of sliced meat on top. Then a hard boiled egg, I usually would make them for the week. We usually go shopping at a local grocery store called Penny, we wear church clothes on Pday as's wonderful.  We are going to Bielefeld for Pday again, we will go and do stuff there and then we will have companion exchanges again.

   There is are different types of festivals almost every week, quite honestly though, it is mostly an excuse to drink and party excessively. So we do not go to most of them.

   This coming Saturday we have our transfer calls, and I am really hoping for a change (mom note—Elder Fisher has been in Minden almost 6 months).

   Scripture of the week: Alma 40:23 “The soul shall be restored to the body, and the body to the soul; yea, and every limb and joint shall be restored to its body; yea, even a hair of the head shall not be lost; but all things shall be restored to their proper and perfect frame.”

   Quote of the week: "we ain't pacing, we racin" (a companions old track coach)

   Well I hope you have a good week and are able to enjoy the vacation coming up. I hope for pictures as well.

Love you Mom and Dad. Hope you have a good week, and safe drives.


Elder Spencer Fisher

Mini-golf, Visiting a Castle, and P-day activities

August 1, 2016

   We are still pretty low temperatures here in Germany, but the members say that the weather is not completely normal for this part of Germany.

   This week we had a lot of appointments fall out, which was kind of a bummer but we have to keep going forward. I haven't had to speak since Father's Day but my companion and I will be giving a Sunday school lesson this coming Sunday.

   Last Saturday, we were able to go mini-golfing (it was the ward activity_, sadly there weren't as many less actives there as I thought there would be and no friends of anyone came, so it was kind of just a let down and I didn't really want to be there but we stayed because we were already paid for and we talked to the guy that owned the mini-golfing place a little bit, so it wasn't a total loss I guess.

   I usually check the mission blog on P-days when we actually get over to the church. It is pretty much the only way to know where my friends in the mission are. For P-day, we usually get all of our shopping done but sometimes we forget to buy something then we have to go and get it during the week. The P-days in Germany can also get boring fast if you don't plan to go and see anything. This past week, we went to a castle tower thing in Bielefeld with the district, it was fun, I forgot to get pictures from the other missionaries though.

   The people in Minden are excited about the remodeling (of the Frieberg temple), but a lot are not going there because it takes five hours just to drive there, and that means they have to rent a hotel room, so it is just a lot of money.

   Mom mentioned cleaning out the refrigerator and I can understand why cleaning the refrigerator is so important after being on a mission for so long, because you get to some of these elders apartments and there can be jam that has been sitting there for six months and no one cleans it, or a sauce that went bad two years ago but no one throws it out!! I do not understand elders sometimes!!!

   I have gotten more optimistic on the mission, not to say difficulties are not there anymore, but I have learned to enjoy a lot more of the little things in life on the mission, especially when I am in situations that I do not want to be in at all.

   We are used to teaching lessons in the street but it doesn't make it any less awkward though, you could always offer our house to teach an investigator though, then it is almost always a good setting, for example, have the missionaries and the investigator over for dinner, and then after dinner, you can teach the investigator! It is the dream for me to have that kind of appointment on my mission.

   Scripture of the week: Alma 24: 23-24 “Now when the Lamanites saw that their brethren would not flee from the sword, neither would they turn aside to the right hand or to the left, but that they would lie down and perish, and praised God even in the very act of perishing under the sword--Now when the Lamanites saw this they did forbear from slaying them; and there were many whose hearts had swollen in them for those of their brethren who had fallen under the sword, for they repented of the things which they had done.”

   Quote of the week Neal A. Maxwell "Involve newcomers quickly in the Lord’s work. They have been called to his vineyard not just to admire but to perspire--not to “ooh” and “aah” but to “hoe and saw.” Let us make of them friends--not celebrities; colleagues--not competitors. Let us use their precious enthusiasm to beckon still others to come within."
I hope that you have a great week and that you enjoy the summer, since you actually get one.


Elder Spencer Fisher

Sunday, August 7, 2016

Combined Zone Meeting --Week of August 1st

This a combined zone conference for training with Area Seventy Elder Charles.
I promise Elder Fisher is in the picture.  Can you find him?