October 26, 2011
I have been transferred to a new apartment. It's in a place called Green Park (yes, that's an English name). My new companion is named Elder Bathula. He arrived in Delhi on Friday. I am his Trainer.
I am still serving in Malviyah Nagar. This is my second "Transfer." My first Transfer, I changed rooms. My second transfer, I changed apartments. Now I live in Green Park. I am still serving in 4th Branch. I take the Metro every morning to Malviyah Nagar to proselyte. I think that I'm actually in Lajpat Nagar's area. The reason why I live here is because I live with the Assistants. I live right next to the Mission Office. About 10 minutes' walking distance. It's not a big deal. Going on Metro costs 9 rupees one-way. It takes 15 minutes, max. So I don't worry about it much.
I don't know the area around here very well. From what the Assistants have said, it's very expensive area. So we'll probably eat while in our time in Malviyah Nagar. But I still need to check. I saw a Dominoes and a Pizza Hut nearby. I think that I might be enjoying my stay here. ;)
As a Trainer, I take an extra hour for a new training program that the Church starting three months ago during Companionship Study. So now it's one hour of Personal Study and 2 hours of Companionship Study. Non-English Language-Speaking Missions then take another hour for Language Study. It is so advanced! I have no idea what I would be teaching him now without it. We just follow the schedule. He arrived on Friday, a day after missionaries normally arrive, so we've been doing extra practices at night to catch up. It doesn't mix with our proselyting time. The training program lasts 3 months, so he and I will be companions next transfer, as well. So no worries! I'll be in Malviyah Nagar for Christmas!
Yesterday I took him to Kalka Ji. There are several members there that fell away months ago. Of those families, I became well acquainted with two of them; the Sushil Kumar family and Joana Melton. I had spent much time with them with Elder Varada, attempting to bring them back to church. We were, for the most part, unsuccessful. Brother Kumar’s son, Amit, had recently gotten married to a woman named Anundini. She is an investigator to the church, and he a member. So it gave us a good opportunity to try a new attempt at visiting them by introducing them to Elder Bathula. It worked rather well. Anundini discussed how she wasn’t “very religious” but wanted to know more about Jesus Christ. Elder Bathula spoke shortly about Jesus Christ and opened a discussion that led us to 2 Nephi 2. Anundini read from some verses and we explained them to her. She promised to read the rest of the chapter before our next visit.
Elder Bathula did very well in his teaching. He took the initiative, answered her preliminary questions to the best of his ability, and then directed the conversation to a point that we could discuss Plan of Salvation. Unfortunately, we were unable to complete the lesson due to time constraints, but we now have a topic for our next visit. We will be preparing ourselves over the next couple of days before we return to their home to finish the lesson. I feel that it was very instructive for Elder Bathula. I am thankful for the opportunity that I have of training him. I know that he will be a great, PMG missionary in no time!
We now have 6 Elders serving in Malviyah Nagar. Elder Varada is still training Elder Veeraraj. Elder Varada is back-to-back training. He will leave Malviyah Nagar in December (he's been here since March!). Elder Sade is also training one of the new Elders. He's still in Malviyah Nagar apartment. Elder Anthony (his Trainee) inherited my side of the room. We split our investigators on Friday during Weekly Planning. I took all of the English-speaking investigators. They kept the Hindi-speaking investigators. Elder Bathula can speak very good Hindi. But we felt that it was best that I should take the English-speaking investigators. It evened out very well.
The other two Trainers are Elder Podi and Elder Bradley. They're both in Vasant Vihar, 2nd Branch. Elder Green is in Munirka now and Elder Hornberger is in Dwarka. Neither of them are training. Although Elder Green is with a companion that came only 1 Transfer after us. Elder Gubala. Great guy.
The irony that I see is that every Elder in 4th Branch and 2nd Branch is either a Trainer or Trainee. hahaha.
It's difficult to say which recipes that I like best. Cream Cheese bars are by far my favorite - but they're also, I think, the most complicated. I don't think that sending the actual bars will work. They probably won't survive transit. So the recipes will do. I don't own an oven. I have a gas stove. I might be able to make an oven out of a pot. Elder Avans taught me how. But I don't know if I have a pot big enough. This is such a new apartment. This is the first transfer that any Elder is living in it. So, we're missing many basic resources (copies of the Book of Mormon, for instance). So we're still renovating it. I like the Reese Bars. No-Bake cookies would be excellent. Never liked lemon bars. You can send them to me anyway. 7-layer bars are okay. (I think that it's sad that I can list more Christmas goodies than members in the Quorum of the Twelve). just kidding! Um... I can't recall anything else. You'd be surprised at how Americanized India is. I can pretty much find anything. I just need to find it. There are some American stores. But they're more expensive for a missionary budget. It's a weird feeling that I left Yuma exactly 5 months ago. Of course, everyone will be celebrating it by celebrating Diwali. There'll be enough fireworks tonight to make 4th of July look like a match compared to a flamethrower. I will not be sleeping tonight. Hahaha.
I received your package! Thank you! The list of what I received: Halloween Candy, Skittles, Disneyland Popcorn, Pringles, Toothfloss, Toothpaste, Toothbrush, Peanut Butter, and ... um...I think that that's it. I'm splitting up the Halloween candy between 8. I'm giving some to the Assistants (I'm such a nice guy), and the rest I'm sharing with the District. I'm still District Leader. So, next District Meeting, I'll wrap up some candy for each Elder and share it with them. Halloween status. I sent Elder Varada his Reeses. He greatly appreciates it! Thank you! I'm saving the Disneyland Popcorn. It's more than sacred to me at the moment. I'll eat it sometime next week. Thank you! I was not expecting it. So it was a great shock for me (and totally amazing!) Thank you!
Also thank you for the peanut butter. We've been in a sandwich-making mood for the last couple of days. So we'll be really making good use of it really really soon! We just need to finish our current peanut butter. Then we'll eat mine. Yay!
Happiest email ever!
Love you all,