Wednesday, September 17, 2014

6th letter from Leuven, Belgium - Week 12

Elder Steenblik
Selfie Madness
Elder Steenblik
The tulip fields aren't as pretty as everyone said they would be.  Ha Ha

I'M STILL ALIVE!

Yes, I am still breathing so that is good.  Sorry I haven't emailed in 2 weeks.  The computer at the church has been broken and I don't have all of the documents I need to make library account so, I couldn't email.  The computer is fixed, hopefully for good.  Man, it has been a long time since I have emailed so, I will try to fit as much in as I can.  Transfers are today but, Elder Losee and I are staying here in Leuven.

These past 2 weeks have basically been opposites.  2 weeks ago, we were so busy! Some days we had like 3 or 4 lessons a day.  It was awesome!!! Then this past week has been a drought.  All of our appointments fell through and we were busy with traveling to the Netherlands so, it went from feast to famine in the blink of an eye.  We have gotten a ton of referrals so this week should keep us nice and busy teaching.

On Thursday, we had a mission conference with the whole mission there! 150 missionaries all gathered up.  Elder M. Russell Ballard was there as well as Donald L. Hallstrom from the presidency of the 70.  It was so sick! Before the meeting started, we all got to shake their hands and say hello.  Elder Ballard literally gave an hour talk with no notes or anything he just stood up and started talking.  I will share a quick thing that I liked from it.  He talked about how we need to teach EVERYBODY and he said, "When you see others, think of the price that the Savior paid for them."  That is so true.  The Lord loves every single person on the earth more than we can even imagine! That is why as we as missionaries do our best to talk with everyone we can.  "The worth of souls is great in the sight of God."

We teach lessons to all different kinds of people.  We teach in English, Dutch, French, Spanish, and even Slovakian with translators.  It is really cool to get to meet so many different people and teach them about the gospel.

The other day, Elder Losee and I were walking down the street to our apartment and we saw a free couch along the road.  I have taken my fair share of couches on the side of the road in my day so, of course we took this one.  We carried it back to the apartment and the thing was so heavy!!  We literally carried it up to our apartment on the 3rd floor squeezing it through our tiny stairwell.  It was the hardest thing I have ever done, but by golly, we got a couch!!!

 The Leuven area is the biggest area in the whole mission.  It is SO BIG and we spend a ton of time traveling on trains, buses and on our bikes, but it is awesome because we get to go to all these cool cities.  The buildings here are amazing! Everywhere you go there is a great big old cathedral or government building.  I seriously think I am at Hogwarts sometimes.

The only bad thing about Leuven is the smell.  EVERYONE here smokes!! Groups of 14 year old kids smoke.  If a bus driver is ahead of schedule, he will get off the bus and have a smoke break.  When you pass the hospital, all of the doctors are out front in their lab coats having a good smoke.  Everywhere you go smells like cigarettes!! By our apartment, is a huge beer brewery that produces a worse smell than the smoke! The best way I can describe it is as a rotten artichoke smell! Every step you take you get a whiff of something else just as bad.

On our P day, we played some of the kids here in town in a pickup game of soccer.  We played with them for a while which was super fun. 

Well, the internet is all messed up right now so I've got to go! Hopefully I will have a solid computer by next P-day so I won't have to wait another 2 weeks! Peace out.  Love you all,

                                                      -Elder Steenblik 

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