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Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Klagenfurt: May 5, 2014 (The Last Email)

This first part was added by Robin, Andy's mom:
 This is the last email from Elder Merkley.  Such mixed emotions.  I'm mostly excited, but just a little sad that I'll no longer wake up to these wonderful, spiritual emails.  Unbeknownst to him, we get to meet him at the train station when he arrives in Munich on Thursday.  I'll be wearing a big smile and waterproof mascara, especially since I'm crying now as I write this.  Thank you for your love and support of this wonderful missionary.  We'll be home just after midnight, Wednesday, May 22nd and you're welcome to come over that afternoon.  If you can't make it then, his homecoming will be Sunday, June 15 at 9 AM at the stake center of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, 2121 E Route 66, Glendora.  We love you!

Dearest Fam-bam,

This is a pretty surreal feeling. Knowing that I am writing you an email as a missionary for the last time makes me really ask myself where all the time went.  We'll get to that later.

The weather here has been a little temperamental. The last couple of days have been a little bit cooler, and if you are standing in the shade then it was a little bit chilly. For the most part though I have been wearing short sleeves for the last week and a half, and it has been very enjoyable.

You will definitely be able to meet Elizabeth. She knows when we are coming to Klagenfurt, and she should be there in Church on that Sunday. If she isn't there for some reason I know where she lives, so we could get a hold of her. I think she will be fine. She is forming good connections with the ward, and yesterday she made me give her Radu's number, because she told me that she had felt something good in him, and that even though I was going she wasn't going to give up on him. She is really converted.

We actually just taught Ulrich today, and it was definitely a better lesson. We really focused on talking about prayer, and then at the end of the lesson he said a really short memorized prayer, and we all said Amen, and were about to leave, but then I just had the feeling that he needed to pray again, and speak it from his heart, and so we stopped and asked him to pray one more time, and to try it in his own words. He did it, and I think that will be a major step for him as he continues to study and pray about the Gospel.

We haven't had an appointment with Magnus since the last time I wrote, but we did make a lot of progress with him, too. We invited him to the baptism on Saturday, and he came, and then afterwards we were invited to a member's house for a barbecue, it was a very select group of people there, but Magnus was invited too, and it was a ton of fun. There was another young member, one of the only YSAs in our ward, and her boyfriend, who is not a member, that were there, and then Lukas, the 24 year-old who was baptized. I was looking at the four of them, two of them nonmembers, and I just could see the future of Klagenfurt. If those other two were to get baptized the young single adults of this branch would become so much stronger and more solid.

We're trying to focus more and more on preparing Elder Dickson to take over the area, but I am slightly concerned that he doesn't know it well enough. We'll see what happens. Taking over areas is a lot more complicated than in some other areas of the world, because not only do you need to know the members and investigators well, you have to know where they live, how you get there with the bus or train, including when and where they go from, what the name of the stop is, etc, and you have to know about buying tickets, language, and all sorts of other things. Sometimes it can get a little bit stressful, and I know that Elder Dickson is feeling it. I have seen a ton of progress in him though, and I know that he is a lot happier than he was when he first came. I am looking forward to staying in contact with him throughout the rest of his mission, until he comes back to BYU to become a track star.

Yeah. I'm not super proud of the teaching pool I will be leaving behind. There are a few solid investigators, but not nearly as many as I would like to have left. Had I left before the Great Recession of Investigators that happened about two and a half months ago, then I would have been proud of it. As it stands though I am happy with the work that I have put in, with the relationships that I have built up, and with the people I have helped come closer to Jesus Christ. I feel like I gave my best, and I will continue to work hard for what is left of my time.

Also, Mom, the word I used to describe my mission/what I learned was love. I learned to love people, I learned to love myself, I learned to love the Lord more, and I learned to love my mission. Love I think is something that describes my mission very well, although I still feel like I have miles and miles to go before I reach any point at which I could say that I was charitable.

Also, I know you like a record of my studies, and so I'll tell you about what I studied this week. I was privileged to give a talk at the baptism on Saturday, and I talked about the Gift of the Holy Ghost. I really was just so happy for Lukas that he was going to be able to receive this gift, and as I talked about it I realized what a marvelous gift it was, and how he can really guide us and help us to make good decisions in our life, and also help us to help others on the path. I'm very grateful for his influence in my life.

Well. I kind of feel like a part of me is dying. I'm really excited to come home and see you all, but I also relate with what you were writing, Dad. I just feel like part of my identity is going to die, and that I'm taking off a major part of my armor against the Adversary. I know that I will still study the scriptures and pray, but I also know it won't be the same. I'm going to miss the Spirit of the Mission, and I have been really drinking it in recently, and trying to live in it as much as possible. 

I love you all. I know the Church is true, and that Jesus Christ lives. He loves us. I also know that being really sad about ending my mission might indicate a lack of faith, because I also know that God has a lot of good things in store for me. I'll see you on Friday!

Elder Merkley

Thursday, May 1, 2014

Klagenfurt: May 1, 2014

Dearest Fam-bam,

I just wanted to send you a quick email, now that I actually have time, and just give you a breif recap of the week, so that you know that I don't just sit around all day thinking about going home and making plans.

The Mission Tour was awesome. It was great being in Vienna (Wien in German, sorry, I forget sometimes to write that in English. We always just call it Wien. I was kind of confused the first time I heard it too), and it was great to have a few hours where we could really just concentrate on finding people. I really did enjoy it, I felt good, and it felt really good to be able to talk to a lot of people and share my testimony with them. We were able to meet a good amount of people who gave us their information and wanted to talk to us a second time too.

Elder Barker is still the same Elder Barker whom I knew in Passau. His German is definitely better, but he still has those same endearing quirks that I got to know so well. I really love the kid, and I really enjoyed working with him again. We had a lot of fun chatting with each other and we were even able to stay in his apartment, which was also a lot of fun.

Our teaching pool is going alright. We have found a new investigator recently whose name is Ulrich. He is a really nice older gentleman who sometimes has some funny tendencies, but he has done some of his reading in the Book of Mormon, and it looks somewhat promising with him. We had an appointment yesterday, and he had three friends over, whom we were able to teach too. It was great, because they seemed pretty interested as well, and one of them committed to come next Monday to our next appointment. 

Magnus ended up coming with us on a hike, that our GML organized, kind of spontaneously last Friday, which was super great. We have a way better relationship with him, and we committed him to live the Word of Wisdom at last night's lesson. He says that the only potential problem would be forgetting and then drinking Black Tea. We are praying for him, and I know that he has the willpower to do it. It is great because we had a joint teach last night, and she was really supportive, and it seems like they are building up a bit of a friendship as well.

Elder Dickson is doing well. He is making the effort to participate more in every lesson, to say more in our street contacts, and it is really noticable that his German and teaching skills have improved a lot. We have a lot of fun together, and we especially enjoy our morning runs. It's a good chatting time, haha.

Ok, well I need to go! I only had about 20 minutes to type all that, so I hope that it is legible. Also, spell check is in German, and so I am not accountable for any spelling mistakes!

Love you!
Elder Merkley

Monday, April 21, 2014

Klagenfurt: April 21, 2014

Dearest Fam-bam,

Ok, so sorry that I am writing so late. I have also a very limited amount of time tonight, but I am going to be trying my best to get in all the things that needed to be written. The reason things are kind of more stressful recently is trying to email all these people from my old areas and get all this stuff figured out, and it leaves me very little time for writing you, which I really regret. I don't necessarily enjoy writing such long emails every week, but I really like for you to know everything that is going on in my life, well everything that I can fit into an email, I forget a lot of things. Thanks for complimenting my emails, Mom. I really do try to put in effort and write the important things from the week.

Anyway, something cool that will be happening next week. We will actually be heading over to Vienna next Tuesday so that we can have a Mission Tour with Elder Dyches of the Second Quorum of the Seventy. That by itself is really cool. Just last night, however, we got a text from our Zone Leaders and found out that we will be doing a finding day in Wien while we are there, and we will be doing exchanges with Elders from the Wien zone. And I guess they thought it would be cool to put a couple of Father-Son pairs together, because guess whom I will be working with? Elder Barker! I'm really excited to work with him again and see how he is doing. He's about a year on his mission, and I'm really excited to see the progress he's made since the last time I saw him.

Easter was a lot of fun. The Wades actually invited us over, and had a really great Easter lunch with us, complete with a lot of pretty typical American foods, which I really enjoyed. Sister Wade is a great cook, and she has such a great heart. In this part of Austria, they have a cold Easter lunch (I think, at least that is what I heard, and what we kind of experienced today. Today was a holiday here too-because it's the day after Easter, I think?), with meat, and a lot of horse radish. My sinuses were on fire at one point from smelling it/from eating it.

Elder Dickson and I are still going running every day, that pain behind my knee has essentially gone away. In fact, we just stepped up the distance today, and probably ran over three miles at a decent pace. For me, a decent pace means around 25-26 minutes for that. It was a lot of fun, really beautiful, and we were able to chat the whole time, which made the run way more fun and less painful than it normally is. You two should bring your running stuff when you come, so that we can still get up in the mornings and start our days off with a run, I love doing that.

Well, we did get one new investigator this week. His name is Amir, and he is from Iran. He is Muslim, but he wants to convert to Christianity. He is one of the students that we found in the Mozartheim, which is where Radu lives. I don't think this University is anything that special, I just think that this house is where most of the foreigners live, because it is pretty cheap, I would assume, and located within ten minutes from the University. Anyway, Amir is cool, and we actually met with him twice this week with members there. It was a cool experience, and we are hoping that he will be able to start progressing and accept the baptismal committment. We do want to make sure that he doesn't want to convert just so that he doesn't have to go back to Iran, which is something that he has mentioned to us before.

This week I have been learning a lot about love. I have just realized how much I need to work on my charity and selflessness. I think that a lot of the other Christlike attributes I am missing could be developed if I first would have the basis of the pure love of Jesus Christ. I'm really trying to focus on developing this.

Anyway, sorry this is so short, but our email time was a little short today. I love you guys! I know the Church is true, and I love being a missionary. I'm looking forward to coming home, but I am also looking forward to these next few weeks of service.

Elder Merkley 

Monday, April 14, 2014

Klagenfurt: April 14, 2014

Dearest Fam-bam,

So just before I forget, I spoiled you this week and put a few more pictures on Dropbox. Please, enjoy.

This week has been a lot of fun.  The best thing has been the weather. It has really been a very enjoyable temperature, and it even feels like Spring may already be passing, as many of the blossoms are falling off the trees and there are real leaves starting to appear.  I think this is the first year that I have experienced a real Spring. Last year we went straight from Winter to Summer in the matter of a week and a half or so, haha. We have also seen more success in our finding efforts, although we did not find any new investigators yet... but we have a couple of appointments set up for the coming week, so I have hope that things are going to keep getting better.

Kind of a funny story from this week, so Elder Dickson and I went to the place where Radu lives to meet up with him, and when we knocked on his door his roommate answered and told us he wasn't there (Radu lives in some sort of Student Dorm), and so we began chatting with him. We chatted for a few minutes and then ended up explaining our purpose as missionaries and invited him to hear more. We got his number and actually had an appointment with him last night. It was really cool, though it might be kind of awkward when Radu sees the French Book of Mormon lying around... Radu seems kind of like the jealous type to us, so we are wondering if that might cause some problems... Anyway, the appointment was cool because we were able to get a member there, and we were really able to establish our purpose, and that of the Book of Mormon well. We invited him to hear more, and he was hesistant, because he said he wasn't really ready to change his Church. We ended up leaving him a pamphlet, and we are hoping to be able to follow up with him about it next week at some point.

Speaking of Radu, things are...unchanged. We have tried to meet with him, and we saw him once briefly, but he was just playing Ping Pong with some other guys, one of whom is someone who had just given us his number last week, that was pretty fun, haha.  Anyway, he keeps putting off really sitting down and meeting with us, because he has always had a test coming up, and can't take the time to talk with us. It's really sad, because I can just feel his priorities completely shifting. Before it was all about God, and everything else was second to that. In the last month or so it has been school and ping pong first (not necessarily in that order), and God is a very distant second or third. It has led me to thinking a lot about what I need to do in order to stay strong in the Gospel and avoid letting my priorities change too.

We have actually found a ton of young college students from around the world in this same little dorm. It's been a lot of fun talking to them, and we should be having another couple of appointments this week with students from the University here. We're definitely looking forward to that.

Besides that our teaching pool has really become very small. It's saddening to see how many solid investigators have dropped off the map, or how many became one hit wonders- those are always big disappointments to me. I have really improved my attitude a lot though, when it comes to this kind of empty time. I am looking forward to this time where we can go out and look for those really prepared people. There have been so many of those kind of people that I have taught here, and I look forward to trying to find more of them.

This week I have actually been studying General Conference a lot, because I had received the assignment on Wednesday to give a talk about General Conference on Sunday. I was really happy to do it, but the short amount of time was a little annoying/stressful, and to make matters even more complicated, the talks weren't available in German, and so I had to either translate things spontaneously by myself or listen to the talks in German on, and painstakingly pause the recording every few seconds to write down three of four words at a time. I did a combination of both, and they were both pretty difficult, haha. I was studying a lot about love this last week, and was really struck by President Monson's remarks. I read this morning in 1 John 4, and was really surprised by how clearly it says that if you say you love God, but you don't love your neighbor, then you are a liar... That threw me through a bit of a loop. I definitely have some improving to do.

Other than that I have been studying in Preach My Gospel about the Book of Mormon and the role that it plays in missionary work. We actually had Interviews this week, and President and Sister Miles were emphasizing our goal of giving away a Book of Mormon every single day, and so I want to strengthen my testimony of the great power in that book. I just realized though, kind of like that email you sent me from Tanner said, that all we can really do is just invite people to read and testify of the results of that. Whether they actually do it or not is their choice. A lot of times I take myself way too seriously, and gauge my success on the actions of others, but I know that I am still a successful missionary even if no one uses their agency like I would want them too. I remember Spolmes telling me in the one letter I got from him on my mission (he went on his mission shortly thereafter, and we email pretty regularly, so I'm not trying to bag on him), that his grandpa had given him the advice to just 'invite, invite, and invite' on your mission. I have really seen the wisdom of that. That's all that we can really do, and it is so important that we actually do it!

Elder Dickson is doing well. We are working on his German, and I think he is getting better. Progress is nothing groudbreaking, but it is still definitely there.

Ward support is still good, in fact they just called an Assistant GML yesterday! Which is awesome, and he lives in Klagenfurt too. Our GML lives in Villach, which is a thirty minute train ride away, so I wonder if they decided to call an assistant here in Klagenfurt so that he could assist us in a more hands on fashion.

The Welsh woman (Rose), came to Bible Course with her husband on Thursday!! It was so cool! Frau Lahoda came as well, and so we had a pretty full class (relatively). There were three nonmembers, two members, and four missionaries. We brought that up in the various organizations on Sunday, and we are expecting a few different members to come on Thursday, but we will see.

I'm feeling really good about missionary work, even though success isn't going exactly like we want it to right now. Well, I got to get going! I love you so much!

Elder Merkley

Monday, April 7, 2014

Klagenfurt: April 7, 2014

Dearest Fam-bam,

Well, this week was just as crazy as we anticipated it being. I really did enjoy General Conference, just like you all did, from the sound of it. I was able to see all sessions this year, because we sat down with the senior couple this morning after seminary and watched the Sunday afternoon one. What I find so amazing is that although none of the speakers are given topics, their talks still work together so well. There were three or four times when after a talk I thought something like, 'Wow, I really need to work on that', and then the next talk was exactly about that topic. Everything just fit together really well.

Other than that and service we didn't see a lot of success this week. We didn't have a ton of time, and we tried to fill that time in with effective activities, but not as much happened as we would have liked. One cool thing that happened is that we brought cookies to a former investigator from Wales, in order to say hi, and to invite her to our Bible course. She was super nice and said that she would come this week. She loved the cookies (thanks, home teaching. That helped me to memorized that no-bake cookie recipe, and then we also have Aunt Janet's cook book that she gave me. My whole apartment is super thankful for that. We use it for baking all sorts of treats to give people), and she was super open because of them. It is really interesting to see how cookies can melt someone's heart. I don't think anyone can be mad when you are standing in front of their door with a plate of cookies.

Elizabeth is still doing great. She seems to be progressing in the Gospel very well, and comes to Church regularly. She was resistant about the idea of home teachers, but if I'm honest, I'm not sure she understands what they really mean at this point, so hopefully we can get her some assigned soon. The language barrier still makes it hard at some points. We need a member who can speak fluent Spanish and German. That would be ideal.

Gin is still investigating. In fact, he read all of 1st and 2nd Nephi for our appointment on Saturday. I don't know how much progress he is making, but he did just send me an email with about 16 questions from his reading, so we'll see. To be honest though, the questions are often a lot more of the nit-picky, generally accepted as non-important things, haha. I'll let you know how things develop.

Well. Some really heart-breaking news with Radu. He didn't answer any of our texts or calls up to Friday. I even had asked him if he wanted to go get some breakfast/lunch on my birthday, and he never responded, and so we were really worried. We ended up walking over to his dorm on Friday and tracking him down, and he told us that he didn't have the courage to tell us, but he said he was never going to come to Church again. He said that he realized that God doesn't love him. He still believes in God, but he believes that God only loves certain people, and only certain people deserve to be happy in this life, and he's not one of them. He said that he would not read in the scriptures or pray any more, because it doesn't help him at all. It really made me sad. He will at least answer our texts and things now, so we are going to try and keep contact with him, but it is just so sad. I know that smoking and his reading in the Book of Mormon played a part in it. At the beginning he was so adamant about how easy it was to read 2 chapters a day, but after a while he started getting distracted by school and before long I think his reading became a little sporadic. In addition to that, he never was able to give up smoking, and I think these two combined to lead him away from the path. It goes to show you the importance of keeping the commandments, and daily reading your scriptures in order to strengthen yourself against temptation.

Elder Dickson is doing well. We are speaking a good amount of German, which is really good for him. He is still hard on himself, but we have been focusing on being more positive, and so I think things are looking better. He knows that in a few weeks he won't be able to rely on my German, and he is already worrying that he will get a companion who can't speak good German, and that he will have to take over a lot of the things I do. I try to give him oppurtunites to do things like that, but I think I need to make a more concentrated effort to help him prepare for taking over the area.

We found out recently that at the end of April we will be having a mission tour with Elder Dyches of the Seventy. So right before we go to Vienna together, I should be able to go to Vienna with my zone, although I won't be able to really do any sight-seeing.

Anywho, this week was good. Thanks for all your prayers! I can feel your love and support and it inspires me to be better. Oh, yeah, you asked me about what I have been studying in Preach My Gospel. Something I have been really trying to work on is gaining a strong testimony of Scripture Study and prayer. I feel like the very basics of the Gospel are where I have problems being effective. Something I have felt the power of recently is really putting your name in the scriptures. Literally trying to make every verse apply to you. One other thing that I kind of have been trying out on my own is my posture when I pray. I had been thinking about it recently, and I realized that my posture when I pray is often pretty disrespectful. Well, when I pray at night I kind of am half lying in my bed, and it doesn't really look like I am speaking to my Father in Heaven. I have tried sitting up, and being really respectful, like you always see if you watch Mormon Messages, and have really focused on trying to feel the connection to Heavenly Father. I feel like the more I focus on understanding what I am doing, and really speaking to Heavenly Father, the more I can really feel this connection to him, and receive answers to my questions daily.

Ok, well on that note, I love you!

Elder Merkley

Monday, March 31, 2014

Klagenfurt: March 31, 2014

Dearest Fam-bam!

This week was pretty interesting, but altogether I definitely enjoyed it.  Our week was filled with a lot of good things, that weren't your traditional type of missionary work. We did service again last week, and we should be doing it this week probably about four times, which has eaten up our week a lot. Today we won't be having much of a Pday, because we already spent four hours this morning helping a member, and then in about an hour or so we will be going to another member to help them as well. I may make this short so that I can try to take a nap before we go, because I also lost an hour of sleep yesterday because of the time change, and got up at 5 this morning for seminary, so I'm pretty tired...

In regards to the missionary work, I wasn't very pleased with it this week. There has been a lot of stuff going on with Radu recently, and I don't really want to go into details, because I'm not sure myself what's going on exactly, all I know for sure is that he didn't come to Church yesterday or answer our texts, which is something really weird for him. So I'm kind of worried about that whole situation. We're going to try to get in touch with him soon, and see how we can help him.

Elizabeth is doing well. She planned a little party thing for my birthday, and so we should be doing something with her and with the other Elders then. I'm looking forward to it. She had me order her a Spanish Preach My Gospel, although I think she was unsure what it actually was, but it will be great for her to be able to read through the lessons and that kind of stuff by herself.

We found a new investigator yesterday! His name is Jakob and he is 18 years old. His interest in looking into the Church seems to be more of a objective interest, but we gave him a Book of Mormon and invited him to read about it, and hopefully we will be meeting again in between a couple sessions of General Conference next week.

We had a Fireside this week, and it was great because our investigator, Gin, came to it. I don't know if I have already talked about him at all, but he was a self-referral through the internet, and we have been teaching him for about two and a half weeks or so. He is really funny, and speaks super great English. He is Muslim, and always asks some provacative questions when we meet. Up to this point he has been a little hit and miss with his reading, and he went to the Jehovah's Witness Church last week, so hopefully he'll be able to come next week. We'll see.

Yeah, so we have had ups and downs this last week, but I am really looking forward to next week, because of General Conference. I love General Conference, and it will be a great chance to strengthen my testimony about modern day prophets. I still need to make sure that I write down a couple questions and a few things that I want to learn while I am watching, because that is always how I get the most out of it.

Other than that a lot of my stress has been taken away about school, so thank you for that! I'm glad that I can finally know where I am living, know that I am at least signed up for classes (I may have added a Bowling Class... I just saw one opening and struck, deciding that I can always drop it later if I don't want it. Sometimes I'm an impulse shopper).

I did get a few cards in the last week or so, I definitely got one from Grand and Grandma Grace, from various people in the ward (sorry, I didn't write it down!), and definitely one from the Holmes, which was really nice.

Sorry this email is pretty lame, but on a scale of 1-tired I'm at an 8. Running on fumes right now, and I have a few more hours of yard work in front of me today. Love you all! I pray for you every night!

Elder Merkley

Monday, March 24, 2014

Klagenfurt: March 24, 2014

Dearest Fam-bam,

The weather this week was really nice! Almost every day we were able to go outside without any jackets, and as we were doing yard work for a couple of members, we were able to work in short sleeve shirts because it was so warm! One of the other Elders actually got sunburnt on his neck... Don't worry, I put on sunscreen, so I was fíne.

Other than that this week was pretty normal. Thanks for setting it all up with Elder Persicke! I'm really looking forward to seeing that guy again. As for things with Elder Dickson, they're going pretty well. Yeah, I help Elder Dickson a lot with his German, we are working on speaking a lot more, and I help him figure out how to say things pretty often.

The ward is being really accepting of Elizabeth. In fact, one of the members remarked yesterday that they felt like Elizabeth had gone through a big change while she was in the Dominican Republic, which is something that I had noticed as well. It is clear now that she understands the Gospel a lot better. I think that hearing the lessons through one more time really helped her prepare for baptism. We actually went to her apartment this week to celebrate Elder Janis's birthday, which was a lot of fun. She has already set up an appointment with me on my birthday, so that we can eat together and celebrate, so that was really nice of her.

As for Radu... there was actually a little bit of drama this week. He failed another class, and was really doubting his faith in God. We met with him on Saturday and went on a walk, because he was refusing to go into a Church, claiming that he would never go into a church again. We talked to him for a while and he was feeling better by the end, and did end up coming to Church yesterday. So things are going better with him again. We are hoping to be able to meet with him more regularly this week, which should help him start making steady progress again. He will hopefully be coming to FHE tonight with the Wades, and a couple of the other young adults.

Dominik and Peter did come to church yesterday! It was cool, because they actually came by themselves, because Gudrun had to stay home to take care of Peter's mom, but they came anyway. I don't know what else needs to be done in order to help them have a better experience there, they only come for Sacrament Meeting. I actually have started joking about baptism with Peter, but he still claims that he is just an observer... The annoying thing though, is that starting this week he probably won't be at our lessons, because he is working again, and because he is a truck driver, he works really weird schedules.

The only funny story from the week is when Elder Janis and I were explaining the concept of a 'guilt trip' to our GML and his wife, and they haven't invited us over to dinner in a while, and so we proceeded to start giving them examples of how guilt tripping could happen. We told them about how when we go home, we usually just eat flour with water, and sometimes put it in the microwave to shake things up a little bit. This guilt tripping went on for about five minutes or so, and then they proceeded to invite us over to eat with them on Sunday. So we went there yesterday and had a delicious dinner, after which we told them that they had bought themselves a few weeks reprieve, but that it wouldn't satisfy our hunger for ever. Maybe it doesn't sound as funny as it was, but it was actually hilarious.

I did hear from Elder Barker! He seems to be doing well, I don't think he and his companion are best friends, but he is about 95% sure that he will be transferred this transfer, so he isn't too worried about it. I think he is on crutches though, because i think he has a torn meniscus or something? His email was a little scattered.

Let me know what we should do with Anna and the apartment thing. If she really wants me to room somewhere where she can be in my same ward, than I will definitely go to a different complex so that we can make that happen. Just let me know.
Anyway, maybe I'll add more later, but I'm tired, and I have a lot of school stuff I still need to take care of. Love you!

Elder Merkley