Thursday, May 22, 2014

Week 59: Day 483: Transferred Again! That's Right -- 7 cities in 9 transfers!

May 20, 2014


Well... we got transfer calls! Definitely a long week of waiting, since we knew everyone would be thrown for one with so many people coming in and leaving and so many new leaders needed. Turns out, I will be leaving to my SEVENTH city (7 cities in 9 transfers, in case anyone has lost track of the high count) tomorrow. I will be re-opening Dunaújváros with a greenie, so I have no idea who my companion will be yet. Sister Dinehart is also leaving, going to Kecskemét with the other Hungarian sister in our mission (if you go back and look at my email from last week, that was indeed my guess for her!). She's pretty much packed; I, on the other hand, have to go home and pack. I figured I was leaving, but I left that small speck of hope in my mind that I could still die here in Szeged.

For other news, I'm currently in single digits for number of weeks left on my mission, and that's starting to feel about right. It rained here all week last week, but the sun is finally back out again! It'll be an adventure taking all 6 of our suitcases and bags up to Buda tomorrow and then taking mine and my greenie's back... hopefully we can get the ZL's cars... (: The advantage of serving with zone leaders.

We had a really good week! Artur got confirmed in church yesterday! Csilla had her bap interview and passed, so the baptism will be on Sunday and obviously neither of us will be at it...awkward. We also bap challenged a mom and her son a couple days ago and they accepted! At this point the baptism is scheduled for August 3rd, so if we end up coming back then, maybe we can see some baptisms! (: We'll see!

Well, that's about all I have for you all this week, sorry. I read a talk from conference that really hit me this week and I wanted to share it with you, it's "More than conquerors through Him that Loved Us" by Paul V. Johnson. Read it! Have a good week, and I'll talk to you next week... from Duna...

Sister Megan Butterfield

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Week 58: Day 475: Baptism Yesterday

May 12, 2014


I'm not really sure what to write you all about today, since we just Skyped yesterday... Mostly the highlight of our week (besides Skyping, of course) was the baptism yesterday! I'll have to send you all pictures of it. It all went smoothly. It's not so much the ceremony that I love about the whole thing, but more the investigators journey and what extreme changes I was able to watch and experience with him. I am so proud of him and amazed at how he has completely flipped his life around and literally become a new person. It's crazy what the Gospel does for people and the happiness that it brings to people who were otherwise extremely sad and alone. I'm excited for his future and the continued blessings the gospel will bring to him. The service itself was interesting. It was at a Seven Day Adventist church here in Szeged, because they have a font... It's a nice, quiet place, just strange to have a baptism in someone else's church... I'm excited for the branch house to be finished here, hopefully August!

Other than that, we're just moving forward with our work. We met this super cute 20-year old girl while tracting (finally did some tracting here!) last week. We went back to visit her today and she's so adorable! Unfortunately, she's going home for the summer to a little village and can't meet until September, but holy cow! I have high hopes for this one! She was sooo excited to get the Book of Mormon and just kept saying how she can't wait to start reading it and read the whole thing! She was like, "I'm just so glad you two were here last time and that you're so normal! I was so excited that I told all my friends about you two and convinced them all that Mormons really aren't weird! I told my whole family about it too and my mom was really happy!" Ah! She's a missionary already! She said a couple of her friends already asked her if they could borrow her copy of the Book of Mormon when she finishes it. I told her that instead, we'd love to give them all copies! She said she'll talk to them all again and see if she can get us their addresses! So cool!

Now we're just prepping for the transfer and for another baptism. We have a super solid investigator (she's pretty much already a member, minus the covenants. Haha) getting baptized on the Sunday after transfers, so that should be interesting to see who is here with her..... We both feel like we're leaving Szeged, but I'll let you know next week what happens. Speaking of, we'll be emailing on Tuesday next week because of transfer calls! Strange... it'll be my last transfer. You can check me on my guesses for transfers at this point: I go to Pécs or something and Sister Dinehart to... Kecskemét or she'll (re)open somewhere new with someone fairly young. We'll see, but now you can check me on my guesses. ;)

This week I've been studying the Atonement every day in my personal study and I just wanted to share a quote that I found:

"By this miraculous physical healing, the Savior confirmed to all of us this infinitely more powerful spiritual truth: the Son of Man forgives sins! He does not excuse us in our sins. He does not condone our return to past sins. But when we repent and obey His gospel, He forgives us.

In this forgiveness we see the enabling and the redeeming power of the Atonement harmoniously and graciously applied. If we exercise faith in the Lord Jesus Christ, the enabling power of His Atonement strengthens us in our moment of need, and His redeeming power sanctifies us as we “[put] off the natural man.” This brings hope to all, especially to those who feel that recurring human weakness is beyond the Savior’s willingness to help and to save."

That's from Elder Craig A. Cardon's talk from last April. I liked it so I wrote the last part of it on a sticky note in my planner so that I can read it all the time. I think everyone has things that they struggle with and want to put off, but obviously that's easier said than done and sometimes it's a very long, painful process. But, we can know that He still wants to forgive us, no matter how many times we fall back into our weaknesses. Just know that you all have the strength to overcome whatever you are going through and this source of strength, help and forgiveness is available to all of you, all of the time, no matter what. I love you all!

Sister Megan Butterfield

 Us with Viki in front of the font in the Adventist church before the baptism.

Artur, in the middle, is the one who got baptized and next to him is the branch president, President Szűcs, who baptized him. The little kid in the front is one of our other investigators, whom we teach with his mom and grandma. 

Sunday, May 11, 2014

Week 57: Day 468: Eight Branch Missionaries Called!

May 5, 2014


6 days and we get to Skype!!! It just hit me today! Hopefully our week will fly until then. I can't believe that I only have 11 weeks left on my mission. What? It sounds crazy short, seeing as I had like 78 or something to begin with, yet it also sounds so far away still. Time is the weirdest concept; I will never understand it. Speaking of, I was reading D&C 58 yesterday and came across this scripture that was perfect after the week I had:

2 For verily I say unto you, blessed is he that akeepeth my commandments, whether in life or in bdeath; and he that iscfaithful in dtribulation, the ereward of the same is greater in the kingdom of heaven.
 3 Ye cannot behold with your natural aeyes, for the present time, the design of your God concerning those things which shall come hereafter, and the bglory which shall follow after much tribulation.
 4 For after much atribulation come the bblessings. Wherefore the day cometh that ye shall be ccrowned with much dglory; the hour is not yet, but is nigh at hand.
 5 Remember this, which I tell you before, that you may alay it to heart, and receive that which is to follow.

I just wanted to share that with ya'll. I actually shared it yesterday at a feeding program all of us missionaries had with our branch president and his mom for (Hungarian) Mother's Day. I really like the part in verse 3 about our "natural eyes" and how we really can’t see the plan of God or what is to come later, but we just need to last through our hard times and be obedient and then we can trust that it will all work out and we will be blessed more than we can imagine. Easier said than done. I'll be the first to admit that.

Other than that, our week was interesting. It was a holiday on Thursday and we were in Budapest on Friday for interviews, so that whole day was wiped out. We had a decent number of dogs and had a pretty stressful week. Luckily, we made it through our very interesting interviews and came back and were able to throw ourselves back into our work fully and have a great weekend. On Sunday, eight branch missionaries were called, so now we are starting to work with them and help them learn the ropes! I'm stoked for this branch and its crazy progress. I've never seen anything like it and it's so cool! I just hope that I'm here next transfer to see it all through and to start using the new branch house that's almost finished, but I'm not so sure that I will be :/ We have 8 new sisters coming in two weeks and we've been told that this transfer will affect every single sister companionship and they'll have to open 4 cities (probably just re-open 3 that were closed temporarily 3 weeks ago) and have something like 13 sisters in leadership positions. So... it's going to be crazy and no one really knows what's happening yet.

We had an interesting night... At about 1 am I woke up to my companion freaking out again about some cockroaches, but I was too exhausted to even get up and check, so I told her to either kill them or just close the door so that they can't come out of the kitchen. All I heard was her shriek, "Oh no! They're coming towards us!" and then she slammed all the lights off and jumped back in bed... I fell back asleep pretty quickly, but started dreaming that I had cockroaches crawling all over me and then that my comp told me I had 5 in my bed with me. So at about 2:30, I couldn't take it anymore... I got a flashlight and put on some shoes and went for 'em. Ugh. They had come out of the kitchen and were in the hallway around (on) all of our shoes and a few had crawled into the bathroom and into our living room (lost those ones). It probably would have been really funny to see. I had the phone (for its flashlight) in one hand (because the lights scare them away) and a shoe in the other and I was just going crazy on them. I only freaked out when I lifted a shoe up and three went scurrying in opposite directions and I didn't know which one to go for... hahaha. One got stuck on its back and was hiding behind something that the show wouldn't fit through, so I frantically looked around for anything before it could flip back over and run away.... The only thing I could find was hairspray. Yep, I sprayed a cockroach with hairspray. Then I ran into the kitchen to find some kind of chemical that would actually kill it. I'll send a picture of some of them that I killed last night. Some of them were in too many pieces to salvage and other ones got squished on the carpet, so they aren't in the picture...Long story short, I killed them all single-handedly and then got back in bed just before 3 and of course, I couldn't sleep. So I just lay in bed until at least 5, just tossing and turning and thinking about life until I finally drifted off. Let's just say, the morning was pretty rough and I'm exhausted. I think it's about time I come home, this whole coming home thing is starting to take its toll on my eating and sleeping patterns the last couple of weeks. But...I love it out here, so I'm not complaining! Life just needs to pause for 11 weeks and I can deal with it later. (:

I have to run, but we're finishing emailing tonight again, before out program. Let me know if you're online. Love you all! Have a good week!

Sister Megan Butterfield

At dinner a few p-days ago.

Dinner last night at the branch president and his mom's apartment. I may or may not be sitting on her lap. Don't question it. Probably one of the best meals I've had on my mission though. 

Viki just got her mission call to the Washington Spokane Mission, leaving September 9th! She'll be in the MTC with Nate! 

Welcome to District Meetings in Szeged. S/O to Elder Giacalone (the District Leader) - See, I promised you'd make it on my blog. Happy? (:

 Some of the cockroaches I attacked last night...

Sunday, May 4, 2014

Week 56: Day 461: Hair Fiasco, Testimony Building Experiences

April 28, 2014


Uh... Don't be mad, but... I may or may not have dyed my hair this week. Oops. Haha. Don't worry, only part of it, and part of that we bleached back to its normal color because it came out a little too extreme than we expected. It's kind of a long story... There's this YSA here who opened a little hair salon here and offered to cut our hair, cause I haven't gotten it cut since Perkins cut it on splits in like September. Anywho, we gave her free range to do what she wanted as long as it wasn't too extreme. Sister D's hair was about the length of mine and wanted to try it short, so she got a super short A-line. I told her I had always wanted to try brown hair but never had, so she wanted to try this style of like part of my bangs˛/front hairs dark brown and the rest blonde. Yeah... we figured out that my hair is super weird and it kind of went like blackish greyish blue or something? But the bangs came out really well. So, the next day, we went back and she bleached the one side back to its normal color, but even that took like three or four coats of bleach, so she said my hair is super stubborn and thick. Hahaha! Anyway, it looks good now, so no worries. Plus, my bangs will have grown out by the time I come home, so it'll be fine.

Also, just a warning, the stupid shift key is broken and doesn't really work, hence the terrible typing today. Other than that little fiasco, our week was really good. Our work is still going strong and we're working on adding more people to our pool. Next Sunday we have a baptism! Speaking of, we get to Skype next Sunday! We have Stake Conference that morning and then that afternoon we'll have the baptism and then we'll head over to the branch president's house to Skype. I'm guessing it'll be sometime between 6-8pm here which is like 10am-12 pm there. He said that there will probably be two computers that we can use and just Skype at the same time, but he's working it out. We'll have an hour to Skype. So…if anyone gets on by the time I email tonight, let me know what time you have church and if 10 or 11 would be better for you?

Hm…this week we had a good time. Yesterday one of the members invited us over for a palacsinta (pancakes... aka crepes) party with some of the girls in the YSA and our investigator who's getting baptized and it was a blast. We couldn't stay for long, cause we had to run to another program. But literally, I'm just in love with this branch and the city. It's so crazy. I've loved the other cities I served in, mostly when I was younger in the mission, like Buda, but this is just like home here. So weird. We also had a branch FHE on Friday and brought like 8 of our investigators. It was a lot of fun to be there with everyone and play games and stuff. I've noticed the craziest things lately. Before my mission I never would have been able to just like pull scriptures and references out of a hat, but twice since I've been here I've had super cool experiences. Both women have been members for quite a while and one had to plan a talk and couldn't remember where in the scriptures a specific scripture was. The other one was planning the spiritual thought for the FHE and was struggling to find a scripture that would go along with it. Both came to me (at different times) in panic mode at the last minute, and asked me to help them. It was just a testimony-strengthener to me, to realize that not only am I closer to the Holy Ghost than before my mission, but probably than almost any other point on my mission. Both times, a scripture popped immediately into my mind. I wasn't sure if it was the right scripture for either of them, but according to both, it was just what they were looking for. I love being able to literally see the Lord working through us as missionaries and feeling like a tool in his hands. I just feel like I've been blessed with so many cool experiences lately, in my missionary work and in my personal life and prayers. Life is just so crazy and it's literally flying by. I don't know if any of you noticed, but less than three months until I get home. Still don't know how I feel about it. I already can't wait to come back to Hungary!

On a side note - Happy Birthday this week, Dad! - and Zach last week!

We have to run again, because we have a pretty busy day, but we'll finish emailing again tonight, i think. So let me know if any of you are online then or just reply before then and I'll try to send pictures of the new hair, but it’s not really that different! (: love you all! Read conference! (:


Sister Megan Butterfield

Someone drew out all of our last names (missionaries in Szeged) Haha!

Having language study with Viki.

She's so cute! She's like my best friend here!

At the hair place! That's how much hair Sister Dinehart cut off in some places. They used it and gave a girl in the branch thicker hair. Hahahah what?

Don't worry, that's not what my hair looks like right now on either side.