Monday, July 24, 2017

Week 30 - Lodz


Hello all!
     How are things going for y'all?  Hope they are going well.  Things are good here in Łódź.  It's been getting a little chilly here with a lot of rain for some reason.  The weather here is pretty unpredictable sometimes.  This week we've been trying to do some finding activities in some different locations, and they've been working pretty well.  We actually met a guy who was born in New York, but has traveled all over Europe and stuff for his parents work and now his work.  He's in his twenties right now, and he's super cool.  We've already had lunch with him a couple times, and he's super interested in what we have.  He also speaks 8 languages, which I find amazing.  But yea, we're hoping to get him to church soon.  The work is going well.  So this week, I was reading some more in the Pearl of Great Price, and it's got some really good stuff in it.  I especially liked Joseph Smith - History as I was reading through it.  I'd like to share just a couple verses I really liked:

24 However, it was nevertheless a fact that I had beheld a vision. I have thought since, that I felt much like Paul, when he made his defense before King Agrippa, and related the account of the vision he had when he saw a light, and heard a voice; but still there were but few who believed him; some said he was dishonest, others said he was mad; and he was ridiculed and reviled. But all this did not destroy the reality of his vision. He had seen a vision, he knew he had, and all the persecution under heaven could not make it otherwise; and though they should persecute him unto death, yet he knew, and would know to his latest breath, that he had both seen a light and heard a voice speaking unto him, and all the world could not make him think or believe otherwise.

25 So it was with me. I had actually seen a light, and in the midst of that light I saw two Personages, and they did in reality speak to me; and though I was hated and persecuted for saying that I had seen a vision, yet it was true; and while they were persecuting me, reviling me, and speaking all manner of evil against me falsely for so saying, I was led to say in my heart: Why persecute me for telling the truth? I have actually seen a vision; and who am I that I can withstand God, or why does the world think to make me deny what I have actually seen? For I had seen a vision; I knew it, and I knew that God knew it, and I could not deny it[...]

Reading Joseph Smith's own account of the Restoration is very powerful, and it definitely gave me more faith in the work that I go about doing every day.  One thing that I love about the Restoration is that Joseph Smith's experience in it can easily be applied to our individual circumstances in one way or another.  As Latter-Day Saints, we face some adversity and persecution, but we can stand tall knowing who we represent.  I'm so grateful for the opportunity I have to be a witness of Jesus Christ here in Poland, bringing His amazing truth into the lives of the people here.  How lucky are we to be living in the time we are today.  Love you all, and hope you have an amazing week!
-Elder Hadfield












Monday, July 17, 2017

Week 29 - Lodz

Hello all!
     How are things going for y'all?  Hope they are going well.  Things are good here in Łódź.  It's been getting a little chilly here with a lot of rain for some reason.  The weather here is pretty unpredictable sometimes.  This week we've been trying to do some finding activities in some different locations, and they've been working pretty well.  We actually met a guy who was born in New York, but has traveled all over Europe and stuff for his parents work and now his work.  He's in his twenties right now, and he's super cool.  We've already had lunch with him a couple times, and he's super interested in what we have.  He also speaks 8 languages, which I find amazing.  But yea, we're hoping to get him to church soon.  The work is going well.  So this week, I was reading some more in the Pearl of Great Price, and it's got some really good stuff in it.  I especially liked Joseph Smith - History as I was reading through it.  I'd like to share just a couple verses I really liked:

24 However, it was nevertheless a fact that I had beheld a vision. I have thought since, that I felt much like Paul, when he made his defense before King Agrippa, and related the account of the vision he had when he saw a light, and heard a voice; but still there were but few who believed him; some said he was dishonest, others said he was mad; and he was ridiculed and reviled. But all this did not destroy the reality of his vision. He had seen a vision, he knew he had, and all the persecution under heaven could not make it otherwise; and though they should persecute him unto death, yet he knew, and would know to his latest breath, that he had both seen a light and heard a voice speaking unto him, and all the world could not make him think or believe otherwise.

25 So it was with me. I had actually seen a light, and in the midst of that light I saw two Personages, and they did in reality speak to me; and though I was hated and persecuted for saying that I had seen a vision, yet it was true; and while they were persecuting me, reviling me, and speaking all manner of evil against me falsely for so saying, I was led to say in my heart: Why persecute me for telling the truth? I have actually seen a vision; and who am I that I can withstand God, or why does the world think to make me deny what I have actually seen? For I had seen a vision; I knew it, and I knew that God knew it, and I could not deny it[...]
Reading Joseph Smith's own account of the Restoration is very powerful, and it definitely gave me more faith in the work that I go about doing every day.  One thing that I love about the Restoration is that Joseph Smith's experience in it can easily be applied to our individual circumstances in one way or another.  As Latter-Day Saints, we face some adversity and persecution, but we can stand tall knowing who we represent.  I'm so grateful for the opportunity I have to be a witness of Jesus Christ here in Poland, bringing His amazing truth into the lives of the people here.  How lucky are we to be living in the time we are today.  Love you all, and hope you have an amazing week!

-Elder Hadfield

Monday, July 10, 2017

Week 28 - Lodz

Hey all!
     Things are going well.  I don't have a lot of time to write today, so this is gonna be a shorty.  But this week has been good.  Łódź is a good city.  I enjoy it.  It's the third biggest city in Poland, but it's super spread out, so it almost has a small town feel to it.  This week, something we've been trying a lot is basketball proselyting.  There is a basketball court near our apartment, and so we go there often to play with people there.  There is a group of kids that we have played with a few times, and they are super cool.  We even had lunch at KFC with them the other day.  One of them came to church on Sunday, and another will be coming this Sunday.  Super exciting.  We'll try to get them to come to English as well so we can spend more time together and build that relationship.  But yea.  I guess basketball is good for more than one reason.  Well, that's about all I have for this week.  Hope you all are doing well. Have a legendary week!
-Elder Hadfield







Monday, July 3, 2017

Week 27 - Krakow


Hello all!

     How's it going?  Hope you are all doing well.  This week was my last week in Kraków, and it was a good one.  We didn't have a ton of lessons, but we did have one with our super solid investigator.  That went well.  He came to church again, and I'm sure he will get a baptismal date soon.  Looking forward to hear how his teaching goes.  On Saturday, we got transfer calls.  For at least the next two months, I will be with Elder Toone in Łódź.  Łódź actually means 'boat' in Polish, fun fact for you all.  But I'm pretty excited for this transfer.  Elder Toone served in Mielec two transfers ago, which means we were in the same district for 4 months.  He's a good guy.  I'm looking forward to the time we'll spend together.  I left Kraków today, and that was pretty hard.  I really came to love that city and the people there.  But I'm excited to be here in Łódź and put in some work.  The branch here is really solid from what I've heard, so that will be good.  This week, I read the first four chapters of the Pearl of Great Price, and they are really solid.  There are some good things in there.  It's a good reminder that "[T]his is [God's] work and...glory—to bring to pass the immortality and eternal life of man."  It's pretty amazing that God and Jesus Christ are literally working 24/7 for our benefit.  If you don't feel like you are anything special, think about that.  Anyways, I gotta go.  I've got work to do.  Love you all, and have a legendary week!
-Elder Hadfield


















Dinner with the Jeff's Family




Myśleniec
Comments from Jake's companion, Elder Ashworth:

Hello, everyone! It's the start of a new transfer. This morning Elder Groseclose and I helped put Elder Hadfield on his train to Łódź. It's about time President kicked him out of his second home. I'll miss his constant tiredness and how he was always just so hot, I'll also miss how he walked, he has a funny walk and slams his feet down, sounds like an Elephant haha, I wish him all the best in Łódź and hope that he'll find his field. 

Friday we had cleaning checks and we did ok, enough that our apartment is safe to live in. We had an appointment set up with this fella in a town called Myśleniec, about 45 mins outside Kraków, this man is a member that got baptised in Austria but recently moved back and wanted a visit from the missionaries. The pictures of us eating lunch with the little fluffy dog are from this trip. It took us absolutely ages to get out there as the traffic in Kraków is terrible, we were sat on the bus for an hour before we even got near the border of the city, I took my shoes off and had a nap. We got there and the man was waiting for us at the bus station with his bike, this is all the info he gave us, we had no idea who or what we were looking for, in a foreign city, looking for someone we've never seen before, we turned the corner and out of the crowd of people we picked him out, we knew it was him, he greeted us, and we started the few km walk back to his place. We were greeted then by his 1 and a half-year-old fluffy puppy named Czarek. The sweetest thing I've ever met, reminded me so much of our Oscar back home, just in the way he acted and how he thought he was the toughest thing about. Myśleniec is a beautiful place, small and quaint, reminded me of Springhead, hills and small houses, few schools knocking about. I think I played with little Czarek the whole time. Piotr made us food and was happy to have us round. We chatted about his life and we told him about ours, all whilst sat in his front garden. He then walked us back to the bus stop and sent us on our way home. Nice guy, hope we can go out and visit him often, help him out with the work he's doing on his house and in his garden.

Saturday was the day of transfer calls, the day all the missionaries are stressed out, wondering when President will call. I was sure I was staying so I was cool and wasn't expecting a call from him, Hadfield, on the other hand, had his phone in hand all day waiting. To take his mind off things we went to Bobby Burger for lunch, the burgers they have there are solid! he called during our few hours in the park playing footy. We found a bunch of lads and made some 5 a-side teams and played for a few hours, getting to know them, talking to them about why we're here and that, it's a good way to talk to people about our church, at least I've found it to be effective. When they see how I play on the pitch, they think to themselves..how is this guy a missionary, I've gotta figure him out and ask him questions..always works. I love a game of footy! President eventually called and told Hadfield his fate, He's off to the Boat (that's what Łódź means in Polish).  That evening we had another Lucas dinner at his home. Ribs, shepherd's pie, goats cheese and bacon, salad, smoothies, he made the lot! 

Monday, June 26, 2017

Week 26 - Krakow



Hello all!

     Hope you all had a good week.  Mine was pretty good.  We had a few lessons this week, including one with the referral who came to church last week.  He is about 25 years old, and he's super promising.  In our lesson, we read 2 Nephi 31 together and talked about baptism.  He seems really open to the idea.  He doesn't want to set a specific date yet because he wants to read more of the Book of Mormon and learn more from that, but I'm confident he'll be ready to set a date soon enough.  He came to church again yesterday, so that's good.  He's super solid.  We also had another person come to church yesterday.  He comes to our English class sometimes.  He's about 60 years old and a funny guy.  He's coming to branch FHE tonight, but goes out of town tomorrow for a week or so, so we won't be able to have a lesson with him this week.  But yea, the work is going well in Kraków.  This week is also our last week of the transfer.  Crazy it's that time again.  I've been in Kraków for 6 months now, so I'm anticipating a change.  Anything can happen though.  Whatever does come, I'm glad I have been able to spend the past 6 months in Kraków because it's just such an amazing area, and I'm sure that whatever comes will be great as well.  This week I have been studying a lot about Isaiah and the historical context of his ministry.  I'm probably going to study Isaiah in depth once I have finished the Doctrine & Covenants.  So I'm looking forward to it.  It's really interesting to see the hand of the Lord in the scriptures, and I know His hand is in our lives just the same, because God is the same forever and ever.  Hope you all have a great week!

-Elder Hadfield

Monday, June 19, 2017

Week 25 - Krakow


Hello all!
    How's it going?  This week was good.  We didn't teach a ton of lessons, but it was still pretty fun.  The other elders' here in Kraków had a baptism on Saturday, so that was super cool.  It's been awesome to see how fast the work is progressing here in just 6 short months.  It's great.  We had a lesson with one of our recent converts this week, and that was pretty good.  We're going to try to meet with the recent converts more often in the next couple weeks.  We also got two online referrals, one of them wanted a Book of Mormon but specifically asked for no missionaries to come to his apartment, so we just went there and slipped a Book of Mormon into his mailbox with our number.  Hopefully we can get in contact with him soon.  We called the other referral and invited him to church, and he ended up coming and staying for all three hours!  So that was pretty sweet.  He asked a lot of questions and seemed super interested.  He seems super promising.  We gave him a Book of Mormon and a restoration pamphlet, and he's coming to English class on Tuesday and staying for the spiritual thought afterwards.  We'll set up on a formal meeting with him then.  Super good though.  Pretty excited to see what he's all about.  We are having a lesson with our only investigator at the moment on Tuesday, and we are going to read 2 Nephi 33 with her and astonish her.  Hopefully it goes well.  

President Turek will also probably be at our district meeting on Tuesday, so that will be super cool.  He's awesome.  We also have transfers coming up in two weeks, which is hard to believe.  Time here just all blends together.  We get our transfer calls next Saturday, so we'll see what happens.  Hopefully it's good.  So this week while I read the Book of Mormon, I went through the Isaiah chapters in 2 Nephi.  And they are super enlightening.  I read them along with the corresponding chapters from  Isaiah.  And there was a part I found really interesting where Nephi does a great job of clarifying what Isaiah says.  It's in Isaiah 29:

1 Woe to Ariel, to Ariel, the city where David dwelt! add ye year to year; let them kill sacrifices.   
2 Yet I will distress Ariel, and there shall be heaviness and sorrow: and it shall be unto me as Ariel.       
3 And I will camp against thee round about, and will lay siege against thee with a mount, and I will raise forts against thee.       
4 And thou shalt be brought down, and shalt speak out of the ground, and thy speech shall be low out of the dust, and thy voice shall be, as of one that hath a familiar spirit, out of the ground, and thy speech shall whisper out of the dust.           
5 Moreover the multitude of thy strangers shall be like small dust, and the multitude of the terrible ones shall be as chaff that passeth away: yea, it shall be at an instant suddenly.           
6 Thou shalt be visited of the Lord of hosts with thunder, and with earthquake, and great noise, with storm and tempest, and the flame of devouring fire.

Now what on earth does that mean?  Luckily, Nephi explains exactly what it means in 2 Nephi 26:

15 After my seed and the seed of my brethren shall have dwindled in unbelief, and shall have been smitten by the Gentiles; yea, after the Lord God shall have camped against them round about, and shall have laid siege against them with a mount, and raised forts against them; and after they shall have been brought down low in the dust, even that they are not, yet the words of the righteous shall be written, and the prayers of the faithful shall be heard, and all those who have dwindled in unbelief shall not be forgotten.           
16 For those who shall be destroyed shall speak unto them out of the ground, and their speech shall be low out of the dust, and their voice shall be as one that hath a familiar spirit; for the Lord God will give unto him power, that he may whisper concerning them, even as it were out of the ground; and their speech shall whisper out of the dust.
17 For thus saith the Lord God: They shall write the things which shall be done among them, and they shall be written and sealed up in a book, and those who have dwindled in unbelief shall not have them, for they seek to destroy the things of God.

Thanks to this passage, we know Isaiah was prophesying in part about the Nephites and Lamanites in ancient America.  As we see at the end of the Book of Mormon, this prophecy was fulfilled and the apostasy began.  Luckily, we do not dwindle in unbelief, so we have the words of this book (the Book of Mormon) and we hear the words of the Nephites whispering from the dust, telling us how to live and playing the role of the iron rod that leads us to Jesus Christ.  I know that I talk about the Book of Mormon all the time in these emails, but that’s because it has brought me peace, safety, and joy in my life.  I know that through sincere study of the Book of Mormon, we all will come to feel God’s love in our lives and we invite the Spirit of the Lord to guide us.  I know the Book of Mormon is true, and that it was given to help guide us through the last days we now live in.  I love you all, and hope you have a great week!

 -Elder Hadfield