Monday, February 23, 2015

Immer Noch in Leer


Hey mom!

Ok, so I am not being transferred. I will be staying in Leer for at least the next 6 weeks.

I have had quite a week here in Leer. To start off, I´d like to tell you a little story that happened this week that really strengthened my testimony of prayer. 

We decided to go to Meppen on Saturday to visit some less active members. It´s a city about 40 minutes away by train, and we brought our bikes with us, and when we got off the train we went to work. We visited the members, and found out that some of them had moved, and others didn´t want to speak with us. We were planning to go visit some other members who live in a town called Haren. There is a train that goes there from Meppen, but we had just missed it, and it didn´t come for another hour. Well, we had our bikes, and Haren is only 19 kilometers away, so we decided to bike there, to save a little time, and to burn our big lunch. We started off, and it was easy. The path was nice and paved, and it was totally gorgeous. Unfortunately, after about 2 kilometers this path turned into a mountain trail, then into really awful pavement, then into mud, and then into sand... This was very hard to bike through, and we were a total mess, but that´s not really important. About 10 kilometers into the rife my pedal started becoming loose. It eventually fell right off of the bike. So we were in the middle of no where, 10 kilometers from meppen and 9 from Haren, and there was no one around us. I was frustrated, and upset, so we got off our bikes, and said a little prayer, asking for God to help us somehow find a way to repair my bike. After we said this prayer, we went off, and I tried to ride a bike with one pedal. That didn´t work, so Elder Timmerman and I grabbed on to a stick, and he started pulling me down the road. That was hard. After about 2 kilometers we saw a house. We went and knocked on the door, and a lady answered the door. We explained the situation, and she led us to a shed in her back yard. It turns out her husband was a mechanic, and he looked at my bike and was able to fix it. What are the odds that the one house we found had probably the only man with the only tools that could fix my bike in miles. That just strengthens my testimony of how the Lord will bless us, and we just need to reach out to him first. We made it to Haren, where we were able to continue our work.

We also had an exchange this week, and I worked here in Leer with Elder Perez. Haha, he´s a funny one. This exchange actually lasted 2 days, instead of one because Elder Timmerman is now coaching a football team in Wilhelmshaven... I will let you know how this goes, as time goes on.

I actually don´t think I´m going to buy a suit yet. Elder Wilde and Elder Perez said I didn´t need to. Also I took out 100€ from my account because we are supposed to have an emergency fund, just incase we need to go to Berlin. I´m not going to spend it unless there's an emergency. There are some crazy things going on in Europe right now. Anything that I need to know? 

ALSO! We found out that Nizar has been moved by the government. They just moved him, and we have no idea where he is :(

I forgot to tell you. Haren is like a crazy catholic town! There´s a really cool giant church in the middle of the town, and there were nuns EVERYWHERE!
Ciao for now ;)
Elder Oliphant

Smoothie accident

Thursday, February 19, 2015

Spiffy New Bike!

Hey mom,
Ok with N*** he has been in Bremen for the past couple weeks because he just had some family move here from Syria, and they only speak Arabic. So he is there so he can translate for them and help them get everything sorted out with the government. He´s been gone for a while, but we still have contact, and he still wants to be baptized :)
We get our transfer calls on Saturday this week, and I´ll probably be going but I don´t know. Plus we´re not allowed to make transfer predictions ;)
Sister Bateman just went to America a few days ago, and she took it with her, so you should be getting something really soon :)
Ok. So this week was very interesting. I don´t want to make you worry, but we got food poisoning from some bad meat. So for 24 hours Elder Timmerman and I were in our apartment in total misery. Oh it was awful! Elder Timmerman wanted some medicine, so we wen´t to a pharmacy, he explained the problem, and the great german doctors prescribed us an herbal tea... Yea. Thanks Germany! Elder Timmerman didn´t think that was going to be very good, so he just bought some laxatives... Why? I don´t know. But I´ve had a lot of fun since then ;) He´s been playing little pranks on me since I got here, so I finally got him back. I put 3 times the recommended amount in his water bottle, his Chili, and his ranch dressing... haha, he´s been on the toilet a lot ;)
We´re starting an English class this week, and it´s crazy how many people here don´t want to learn english! So many people are just saying "Nein, das brauche ich nicht"... It´s a little frustrating, but we´re still seeing a lot of success with it. Wish us luck!!
Ok, I love you, I´m sorry, I don´t have a lot of time today :( BUt I´m thinking of you, and love you all :)

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Hey Mom!

I love getting stuff from you :) It makes me remember my family more, and helps me think about america!! Man, You really don´t know what you have until its gone. But Germany is pretty great too :)
Ok... So N*** is going to have to wait to be baptized for a little while because of his situation with the government. He is currently a political refugee here in Germany, and when the people come here like him the government takes care of them, but they also have almost complete control of there lives. Right now he is going all around Germany having interviews with people, trying to figure out if he´ll be staying in Leer or if he´ll be going somewhere else. He´s been so busy, and going around so much we haven´t met with him in 2 weeks, and we don´t know what´s going on with him. We´re pretty worried right now, and we´d really appreciate your prayers.
Oh well... Do you want to here about some adventures we had this week? We got a referral! This person lives in Westoverledigen, which is a good distance away. With referrals, we´re supposed to contact them in 24 hours... Now where this person lives there is no bus, no train no nothing. So, we decided to bike there! It wouldn´t have been too bad, but right when we started it began to rain. This rain then turned into snow, and then into hail. We ended up getting lost and biking to Weener... It wasn´t a pleasant experience. But we made contact! 

Right after this bike trek we received new bikes! And man, they are nice! The mission was tired of getting cheap bikes and having them always break, so they decided they wanted to get new, more expensive bikes. So now we are testing these new bikes, because "If they don´t break on you, they won´t break on anyone!" Being a big guy isn´t always bad :) But now that we have new bikes, Elder Timmerman like to test them out... We biked 60 Kilometers in 2 days... he wanted to bike 100 but I was able to talk some sense into him.
Man. It´s been a long, crazy week. But I´m still happy, and loving life :)
Keep staying great :)
Elder Oliphant

Tuesday, February 3, 2015


This is super great, because Elder Timmerman is a Broncos fan  Sweet!
Man, well that made my day. It´s been really hard though, because all of our members keep inviting us over to watch it with them, and we have to keep saying no. It´s rough, but hey, it happens. That´s so awesome that Abraham got his mission call!! I´ll be sure to give him my address so he can send me some ties :) But honestly, I´d rather be in a first world country than have cheap ties.  Also I don´t know what you had in the package, but they opened it  up in the airport. I got the watches, gum, Sour Patch kids, 
Swedish fish, Duct tape, peanut butter, tortillas, and the Pokemon stickers... Was there anything else in there?

Anyway, thank you for the package :) Elder TImmerman is very happy to have some good peanut butter again, and I´m very thankful to have a great mom that helps me out here :)
Ok... So this week was really uneventful until Friday. On Friday we finally made contact with N***, our great friend from Syria. We hadn´t had contact with him at all, since he didn´t show up at church, and we were really worried about him. Fortunately, he called us, and told us that he had been all around Germany going to interviews and trying to find out if he´ll stay in Leer, or if the Government is going to move him somewhere else. For now he´s staying here, but that could change at any moment. 
So we had contact, and he told us he was planning to come to our ward Bosseln on Saturday What is Bosseln you ask? Good question. It´s a sport, where all you do is throw a wooden ball down a street for around 7 kilometers, and then throw it back. You throw it like a bowling ball, and you play in teams, and you try to win... Somehow. It´s kind of a stupid sport. I had no idea how anyone could enjoy it, until I saw another group playing, pulling a wagon load of beer with them. I guess that explains it :P
Even though the sport was weird, N*** had a great time with his family, and is still preparing to be baptized this week.
Love you all,
Go Patriots!!

Is he standing on something?
Hard earned money...