Monday, April 25, 2016

7th letter from Geel, Belgium -- Week 96 -- Today marks 22 months

Atomium in Brussells --  Zuster Harris, Zuster Hopkin, Elder Waters and Elder Steenblik  (Turnhout Branch Missionaries)
I honestly have no idea what we're doing in this picture, but here ya go  --  Elder Waters and Elder Steenblik
Elder Steenblik, Elder Waters, Zuster Hopkin and Zuster Harris  (Turnhout Branch Missionaries)
Come unto Christ  --  Elder Steenblik and Elder Waters
Just doing our thing  --  Elder Steenblik and Elder Waters
For sure one of the most flamboyant things I have ever done, but every missionary needs to take a souvenir picture wearing Dutch clothes  --  Elder Waters and Elder Steenblik
Elder Waters, Zuster Hopkin, Elder Steenblik and Zuster Harris  (Turnhout Branch Missionaries)

Goede Morgen Lieve Dames,

Well, I will be staying in Geel with Elder Waters for my last transfer! I am super happy to be staying with Elder Waters because we have been lovin it here.  Both of the Sisters are leaving (Zuster Hopkin is going home and Zuster Harris is being transferred) so we will be getting 2 new missionaries in our branch this week.

We got a new senior couple in our area named the Oliver’s and they are super cool! On P day they drove all four missionaries from our branch clear up to the Netherlands to go to Volendam.  It’s a little Dutch touristy/fishing town.

You wanna hear the miracle of the week? We had a first lesson this week with 2 new investigators that we found.  We had a great lesson and when we left, we went to the bus stop to catch our bus.  We waited and waited and no bus came.  We waited there for 1 ½ hours and still no bus! We figured we would try the good ol fashioned universal hitchhiker sign to see if that would work.  After 5 minutes, some dude slammed on his brakes and picked us up!!! (We didn’t know if it was allowed or not, but we figured we walk into strangers houses all the time, so how is a car any different?!) He drove us back to Geel and we were able to make our dinner appointment on time.  Boo Yaah! The guy who picked us up turned out to be our mailman, Chris and he was a real homie.

There was a baptism in our branch this week of a woman named Mary and she comes from Sudan.  She is super cool! She was a center on the national women’s basketball team there.  She has a super strong testimony of the gospel which she shared at her baptismal service.  She is a great new addition to the branch and is ready to help the missionaries by coming with us on joint teaches.

This week we were in Brussels again so that all of the new missionaries could pick up their residency cards.  We had an hour before we needed to be at the city hall place so we did some "selfie finding" in front of the big palace.  You basically go ask someone if you can take a selfie with them or if they want you to take their picture.  Sure enough, a conversation is started about who we are and why we are here.  It was super fun and we actually saw some success from it!

Also, one last miracle during the week.  A member gave us a deep fryer! We are pretty pumped about that new addition to our apartment.

Well, it is sad that this transfer has come to an end.  This has honestly been one of the funnest transfers of my mission! I am sure that next transfer will be just as sick.  The work in Geel is building up and we are finding new people to teach.  Thank you for all of your prayers in our behalf.  Have a stellar week folks.

                                             -Elder Steenblik

Monday, April 18, 2016

6th letter from Geel, Belgium -- Weeek 95

Turnhout Branch "Crew" in Bruges  Elder Steenblik, Elder Waters, Zuster Hopkin and Zuster Harris
Elder DeWitt and Elder Steenblik looking good at Keukenhof
Elder Steenblik at Keukenhof  --  Known as the Garden of Europe
Elder Steenblik
12 months of showers bring April flowers  -- Elder Steenblik at Keukenhof
Elder Steenblik at Keukenhof
Keukenhof  --  Known as the Garden of Europe
Elder DeWitt and Elder Steenblik on a boat tour in Bruges

Hard Rock Cafe in Amsterdam with the Boyz
Hey Folks,

This week has been nuts! We have been all over the place.  This week alone we have been in Bruges, Brussels, Amsterdam, The Hague, Haarlem, and Rotterdam.

On Thursday we had our temple conference in the Netherlands.  We spent the night in Den Haag the day before, so we woke up on Wednesday morning and spent the day working in Den Haag.  I was able to look up a couple of less active members and investigators that I taught while I was there.  It was really nice to see all of them again! I have missed Den Haag.  That evening a member took us to dinner at Hard Rock Cafe in Amsterdam! We even got a little personal tour of Amsterdam.

Thursday we did a session at the temple and afterwards we went to Keukenhof.  That is a huge garden in the Netherlands with tons of tulips and it’s beautiful.  (See model shots above.)

We also had stake conference in Brussels this week on Saturday and Sunday.  There were tons of members there from Leuven and Eindhoven where I have served, so it was great to catch up with them and see how they are doing.

We have been so dang busy with our temple conference and stake conference that we didn't have much time to work in Geel this week.  But it sure has been a blast! This next week will have a lot more time to work in our city.   What a blessing it was to be able to visit the temple this week.  I am very grateful for the temple and the blessings that we receive from it.  We are blessed to have a temple that we can visit in our mission.  Have a lovely week!

                                       -Elder Steenblik

Monday, April 11, 2016

5th letter from Geel, Belgium -- Week 94



This has been an outstanding week.  We are starting to build up a teaching pool and the Lord is blessing us with success.

At the beginning of the week we had to go up to the Netherlands so that Elder Waters could do some legality stuff for his visa.  While we were there, we were able to pick up my bike and Elder Waters bought one.  It was a super long day because we left at 7 30 AM and didn't get home until 10 30 PM.  But at least we have wheels now!

This week we had 3 first lessons with new investigators! One of them is named Tarin and she is super cool.  When we got to her house she was telling us how busy she was so we were both expecting that she would just tell us to come back another time.  She told us that she was interested in what we had to share and then she invited us to come in.  Elder Waters and I just looked at each other and we both lit up like a Christmas tree! Haha.  She is from the beautiful land they call America.  She doesn't believe in God, but was super open for it.  We taught her about the Restoration with a little bit of the Plan of Salvation mixed in there.  At the end she said the first prayer of her entire life! It was an awesome lesson.  What a blessing it was to find her.

This week we will be going to the Netherlands again for our temple conference so we are super excited for that.

The work is starting to pick up and we are seeing the Lord's hand in our work.  It is getting warmer and warmer so there is also something to be pumped about.  Have a great week!

                                              -Elder Steenblik