Week 100!!!! Wilhelmsburg

Week 100!!!

Week 100!!!

 

Hallo meine Lieben!

I just want to say that I love being involved in this great missionary work. On Friday I received my “Finisher Email” with everything I need to do before I go home – including writing a letter about everything I learned on my mission. I feel like I am basically trying to explain quantum physics in ten words or less! But with prayer, I can do that.
I think Wednesday was a pretty big highlight for the whole mission. Here in Hamburg we had our first Zone Conference with President and Sister Fingerle. We talked about making all those 1% changes in our lives so that we can see real progress. When we change one little thing at a time, we eventually have changed many different things and are already well on our way to becoming a new person. We read in the Book of Mormon in Alma 37:6-7.
It’s after we change those little things, we won’t literally become a new person, but we can develop a new vision of ourselves. As odd as it sounds, I always thought that if I changed myself I would only want to listen to the Tabernacle Choir and I would smile 24/7 and would somehow always hand out flowers to people. However, my mission has created no new person. For all I know, I am still Randell Reese Hoffman with the same tastes and dislikes and so on, but better. For that is what He does with us when we give ourselves over to Him: He makes us better. He doesn’t make us new or different. He worked once already with unorganized elements and made universes without end. So why can’t He improve you?
It was also a lot of fun having children at our Zone Conference. They played the violin and piano for us and we played a game outside to help us talk with other missionaries about how we are going to use the Area Plan better! It’s great.
We started doing our Zone Conferences in German, too. So Elder Bankhead and I were asked to translate. It was fun. And I still learned a lot.
We ended up moving last Pday to Friday because we had too many appointments on Monday. And this time we were FINALLY able to go see something in Hamburg. We are always so busy cleaning and doing other things. We went to the Saint Nikolai Church in Hamburg. It was so interesting! I recommend it for everyone. Or at least look it up online! It was the largest church in Hamburg and was, thus, a main target for the bombings that took place during the World War. We took an elevator up the 75+ meter tower that was still in tact. And then we went to the underground museum, which was mainly about Operation Gummorah, which lasted from July 24 to August 3. It was so interesting to pull out all these gospel lessons out of the displays and quotes that were there.
Walking around the old ruins reminded of how we can heal from old wounds, tragedies, and sin.
Those who had to experience the bombing and the war probably found it very hard. Likewise, in our trials, we think we are sometimes even pushed to the brink of breaking or death. Our loads are just too full. We cannot even pretend any longer to carry them. But I have seen, through my own life and my work here in northern and eastern Germany, that the Atonement heals all scars and mends all wounds. The remaining ruins of the Saint Nikolai church are a stark reminder of the past and what happened. So it is with us. We have memories and scars that won’t go away; and, I say, they shouldn’t. For they make us who we are. Our scars can stand for who we are and what we have lived, like this church does for Hamburg.
And… Yesterday was L’s baptism!!! It was great! I am very grateful that my companion and I were able to participate. He and his mother picked out a theme for his baptism: rainbows. It was super cool. For me it was a reminder of what happened after the great flood and what Noah saw:Genesis 9:13-17
His mother talked about the different things that the Holy Ghost does for us by using the different colors of the rainbow. Each color represented a way the Spirit helps us. And when all these colors are combined, in terms of light, we have the color white, which represents purity.
Plus there was this legit rainbow cake!

Today’s Pday was spent at Ikea in Altona. Our apartment needed some stuff and we wanted to eat lunch there. I finally have a companion who wants to go AND an Ikea near by. I never had the two together!!
Thank you for all your support and letters and emails throughout the years! I am most thankful!

And thanks for reading my really long letters! 😛

Elder RR Hoffman
Kirche Jesu Christi der Heiligen der letzten Tage
Deutschland Mission-Berlin

the old altar/front of the church

the old altar/front of the church

view from the tower at Saint Nikolai's

view from the tower at Saint Nikolai’s

IKEA!!! :P

IKEA!!! 😛

:P

😛

 Elder Enenkel blinked....

Elder Enenkel blinked….

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