Week 12: Neukolln

Freunde u. Familie!
Today is my two month mark! I have been in Germany for two months now – on my mission for 2.5 months. Nothing special to celebrate. But worth noting, I guess….
This week was good! We started off on Diesntag with 3 baptismal invitations! We felt like we needed to invite everyone to be baptized that day. We taught three people and they all accepted! Two are a little more soft than the others. But they all want to be baptized nonetheless!
Wednesday two Elders from Mittweide came to spend the night at our apartment. It was a nice change. Every year, a member of the Quorum of the 70 comes to visit the mission. This year Elder Kearon from London and Elder Fingerle from Germany came to visit us. I learned so much! Elder Kearon reminded me so much of my conversion story – of all those countless missionaries who didn’t give up knocking on our door and reading my record in the area. I am actually curious to read my record in the Danville Stake after reading all these….
Sister Kosak spoke about Martin Luther. Oktober 31st – the day of our conference – was also Reformation Day. On 31 Oktober 1517, Martin Luther tacked up his 95 theses. I just love being here in Germany and doing this work! Martin Luther was such a big player in this work and has made it possible for us. Again, I know the langauge and culture of the Restoration. Now I am acquainting myself with the language and culture of the Reformation! Elder Kearon said at the very end that Germany has so many great promises! We read the dedicatory prayers from 30 or 40 years ago and realize how much of that has come to pass. And then we look at the promised blessings of Germans today and think that they will never come to pass. I know that there is a great work to do in Germany and that, one day, this Gospel will flood the Earth. We are almost there. And I am so fortunate to be a small part in establishing Zion in Berlin – not even in Berlin, in a small part of Berlin in Neukölln! My love for Germany grew that day. I felt like the Grnich when my heart started to grow to big. How does that line from the book go…?
 Sister Kosak also shared this quote that I like from Martin Luther: “I cannot and I will not recant anything, for to go against conscience is neither right nor safe… Here I stand. I can do no other, so help me God! Amen!”
Later that day, we stayed at the Stake Center in Tiergarten and waited for an investigator to come to Institute there. Lucklily, the English class was talking about Jacob 5 in the Book of Mormon – about the complicated Olive Tree. I was so nervous for our English-speaking investigator that it would be too complicated and we would have to clean up some stuff afterwards. But he understood what he read – I definitely didn’t… – and said, “Yeah. I didn’t understand everything. But I learned something new and that’s what counts.” I was so thankful that he was learning with the Spirit and an open heart.
Saturday was our last Fußball day. DARN! I am SO good at it! ha! But this time Präsident Kosak finally came!! It was fun to have him and the Assistants there. President Kosak came up to me and said, “Elder Hoffman, soccer is not your sport, is it?” I said, “Is it that obvious? ha!” But we had fun nevertheless!
Oh! And I forgot from last week! The lady we met with who has some black magic problems from England, she is on a Taufdatum now apparently! (baptismal date) I am so impressed with Missionarinnen in Tiergarten. I knew that they would be much more able to teach her and I know that Heavenly Father answers our prayers!
This week’s General Conference talk is from Crole M Stephens of the Relief Society. She talks about the importance of ordinances. She says that we need these and that can renew all covenants with the weekly Sacrament. When I take the sacrament now, I think of all my covenants with God, not just my baptismal covenants, and how I can be better at keeping those. Gos is generous with his power. As we make these covenants, He gives us power to live these higher laws. We all need God and one another to fulfill our purposes and to make and keep these ordinances and covenants.

We need the opportunity to renew our covenants each week as we partake of the sacrament. Latter-day prophets and apostles have taught that when we worthily partake of the sacrament, we can renew not only our baptismal covenant but “all covenants entered into with the Lord.”

These priesthood ordinances and covenants provide access to the fulness of the blessings promised to us by God, which are made possible by the Savior’s Atonement. They arm sons and daughters of God with power, God’s power, and provide us with the opportunity to receive eternal life—to return to God’s presence and live with Him in His eternal family.

This week’s scripture chain is entitled “One:”

  • Mosiah 18:22 (How do we become children of God?)
  • Moses 6:68 (Be one with God? How…?)
  • John 17:21
  • D&C 35:2
  • 4 Nephi 1:15-17
Shcöne Woche! Tschüss!
Elder Hoffman

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