Monday, October 26, 2015

Winds of Change...

Hey y'all!

We have had a very exciting week, but first of all, the activity we
planned for this week of going to the art museum fell out, so we ended
up making a makeshift ping pong table in our apartment, and we went to
globetrotter, the cool store with a cold room. They also have a little
pool where you can test out canoes and kayaks! It was a ton of fun!

We've been super busy, and it's awesome! Our work has started to pay
off. We met with a less active member this week who joined the church
a few years ago, but then he moved to New Zealand for work, and wile
he was there it was really hard for him to stay active. He came back a
few weeks ago, and we finally had the opportunity to meet with him! He
is super cool! We talked about the restoration with him, and asked him
how he ended up joining the church, then his mom came in to the
lesson, and we started teaching her as well! It was very spiritual,
and then he came to church this week! One other thing that makes this
guy super cool is... You ready? He's a RAPPER! And he can rap his
testimony! So cool! The church is true, and it's for everybody!

We've been doing a lot more work with less actives recently, and we
had three less active families that we teach come to church this week.
It's been great to be able to work with the other ward members here to
help fellowship them, and help them feel comfortable coming back to

We had several other appointments this week, members, less actives,
and investigators, but the highlight of the week was Definitely this
weekend. On Friday we had three appointments, plus weekly planning,
and then On top of that we had to go to the city of Görlitz for a
stake missionary weekend. Görlitz is a really cool city. It was built
around a river, which after World War II became the border dividing
Poland and Germany. So half of the city is in Poland, and the
missionaries there have permission to go to Poland. For this weekend
we had 10 elders and 4 sisters come to the city and we went on splits
with all of the young men and women from 16-18 in the stake. I got to
go out with a young man named Jeffrey Lehmann, and we had a blast
together. We went out for a few hours and just did missionary work in
Görlitz for a few hours. It was great, and we really helped these kids
prepare for their missions!

I have had a great time here in Dresden, it has been wonderful to
serve here, but, sadly, all good things must come to an end. I have
been transferred, and will be going to Erfurt, the Capitol of
Thüringen, where I will be the district leader. It's not too far away,
and it's still in east Germany. Plus I've heard that the best
bratwurst in Germany comes from Thüringen, so, I'm excited :) my new
companion will be elder Griffen, I don't know him at all, so we're in
for an adventure! But, I'll have a car! Woo hoo! (Yes it is still DDR, my comp is elder griffin, and he will be driving because i don't have a drivers license yet, but ill get one when i get there) As I got the call,
I'll be honest, I wasn't very happy. I love Dresden. I love the
members, I love the other missionaries, I love my investigators, I
just love everything about it, and I really didn't want to leave! I
didn't know why I had to go, it didn't seem fair. Then, as I was
sitting in church listening to the prelude music, the organist started
playing "Ich gehe wohin du mich heißt"(I'll go where you want me to
go) and it just reminded me that this isn't my mission, it's the
Lords. He is sending me their for a reason, and I don't need to know
why, I just need to go forward in faith. I will truly miss Dresden,
but I'm excited for a new experience in "uncharted territory" (Erfurt
was added to my mission only a few months ago).
I love you all, and I am so thankful for your prayers and support.
Have a great week

LG Elder Oliphant

Apparently they are trying to conserve on dishes by not using silverware?

Monday, October 19, 2015

Saratov Part 2?

Hey y'all! 

We had quite an interesting week. Just like last week, we were out a lot on the street just trying to talk to as many people as possible to try and find whoever will listen. Just like last week, we worked hard, and had several great conversations, but we still haven't seen any real success. But, in spite of this we are continuing in faith! We know that we'll see some success soon, we just need to keep going and not give up!

In our attempts to find new friends who will listen to our message we have also been trying to do a lot more work with the members that are already here. We spent more time visiting with members this week as we normally have, and we had some great experiences with that. I first of all just want to say how impressed I have been with the faith that I have seen that the members here have. It is remarkable to see these wonderful people, who really do "let their light shine forth." I feel so blessed to be able to get to know these amazing people. One of these members is a brother from Bulgaria named brother N****. He has so much faith and he loves the missionaries. We visited him on Tuesday, and he told us about several of his friends who he wants to bring to the church! He said one of them works in a Bulgarian market here, and he was going to take us on Friday to meet him and to get some Bulgarian tomato paste...? We thought it sounded good, so we went with him. We met him on Friday, and he took us to this super sketch DDR building, and honestly, I thought we were about to have Saratov approach pt. 2! It was super sketch! We went in, and it was an office building. We went up to what looked like a totally normal office, and brother N**** started talking with the man there in Bulgarian. They talked, laughed, and then this friend took us to a back closet completely full of booze! Haha, we were so confused, and brother N**** just looked at us and said "it's all juice!" LOL nope! Then the guy went into the back corner and pulled out a box of tomato paste for us. It was a pretty interesting experience, one that we'll never forget! After we google translated the ingredients of the tomato paste to make sure there was no alcohol in it we tried it, and it's pretty good! It's like a mixture between salsa and spaghetti sauce. 

One other cool experience this week from working with members, we have started working more with the institute program, mostly because of a less active member that normally goes who we've been trying to come in contact with, but this week we met a different man from it! His name is ****, and he's been coming to institute for a while now, mostly because he likes how he feels when he goes and he has a lot of friends there, but he never really met with missionaries. Then last week the other elders called him up and made out an appointment with him, but because he lives in our ward we got to go and teach him! He is really cool, and he really wants to find out if all of the things he's been learning about the church are really true. Super cool! We're really excited to be able to work with him!

So, yea. That was really my week. Bulgarians, YSA's and lots of finding. Today though we're switching our p-day time to tomorrow and we're going to go to an art museum with a member who paints for it! We're super excited for it, so hopefully that all works out!

I love you, hope you have a great week! 

LG Elder Oliphant
Chase said is apartment is clean so I told him to prove it with pictures


Elder Bailey

Elder Teuscher

Thursday, October 15, 2015

2 Weeks for the Price of 1

Here are 2 weekly emails and pictures from Chase.

Add caption

Oct 6, 2015

General Conference!

Hey mom!

Well, this week was difficult, but rewarding. I had the opportunity to
go on my first exchange as a district leader with elder Adams, one of
the coolest guys ever! (And his mom follows the blog. Shoutout!) we
got to go up to Meissen, and have a great time together. But, before
this, we were walking through a park an we saw a man slack lining. We
looked at each other and said "hey, let's go try!" We talked to the
man doing it, and asked him if we could give it a try, and he was all
for it! Elder Adams was really good, me, not so much Neutral Face but it was
still a lot of fun. We were able to have a really good conversation
with the man, and it turned out he was from Australia! He's living in
Hamburg, but he came down to Dresden for a few days. After a while he
asked us why we were here, and it gave us a great opportunity to give
a brief testimony of the restoration. Wonderful! Not only was this a
great way to share the gospel, but now I have taught at least one
person from every continent! Church is true!

On the negative side, I was a little sick, but... Naja. It happens.

Then, the beast of the week was definitely general conference! Man, I
loved it SO MUCH!! It was so amazed to hear from the prophets of
today. I especially loved the testimonies of the new three apostles.
Right after they were done I felt such a strong feeling of love, and a
knowing that these people really are called of God. I am so grateful
for modern day prophets. We invited several different people to come
to the conference, but, sadly, none of them were able to come to the
church to watch it with us. But fortunately, we have the internet now,
so the inspired messages that we've heard are still available to them,
and to us. I would invite everyone to go through and study them again!

Thanks for being so great, I love you so much!

Elder Oliphant Heavy black heart

October 13, 2015


Hey y'all!

Well, this week was really interesting, and I learned a lot. During
the past week we had to tschüss (say goodbye) to a lot of our teaching
pool. A lot of them just weren't progressing, or there was nothing
more that we could do. It was hard, because we love these people, but
we know that it's what is best for them and for us right now. Because
of this big change we have had a lot of time to go out and find
people! And, we have been working hard, and this week we found no new
investigators. We had a lot of really good conversations, and met a
lot of really cool people, but there was no one who wanted to learn
more. But, like I said we did have a lot of great conversations, and
some funny answers to questions. Here's a list of the top five
questions and answers from our week.

5. Q: What have you heard about the Mormons?
A: Oh I know everything! I watch South Park! (Happened multiple times)
4. Q: What brings you joy in life?
A: My polish dog! (Then went off for 20 minutes about Poland and
ended with "church? Oh no!")
3. Q: What does your family mean to you?
A: a lot
Q: What would it mean to you if you could be with your family for eternity
A: We're actually discussing our divorce right now. Could you
leave? (SO AWKWARD!)
2. Q: What brings you joy in live?
A: To recognize truth (then went off for 20 minutes about how
Joseph smith is a false prophet and how we were servants of the devil)
1. Q: Do you believe in God?
A: There is no one God, but many. Go look up the ancient Egyptian religions.

Sometimes it's hard to go and go and go without any really results,
but whenever we have funny comments like these, we just take a moment
and laugh. I love these people, even though it's hard to work with
them sometimes. We were eating with some members and they told us that
the highest concentration of atheism in the world is here in east
Germany. This does make it a little difficult to find people who
actually want to learn or who are searching, but the trick is to just
love the people more than the statistics, and remember that statistics
don't apply to individuals.

So, the subject of my letter today is taufe (baptism) because Sandra,
the sisters investigator, got baptized! This was the first baptism
that I have seen on my mission, and it was such a wonderful experience
:) the spirit was so strong, and I am so grateful that we had the
opportunity to take part in the her coming unto Christ :)

I love every day of my mission, and I'm so glad for the opportunity I
have to serve! I have 11 months left, and I plan to make the most of

Have a great week!

Elder Oliphant Heavy black heart

Sunday, October 4, 2015

Week 56

Hey y'all! We had a great week here in Dresden, Sachsen, Germany. I
don't have a ton of time today because we got up early to help a
family paint there apartment, and it took 6 hours, so that's most of
our p day, but it was great! I love serving people :) there are just a
few experiences I wanted to share.

 We had the opportunity to go back
to Freiberg this week to visit the temple. Not just once, but twice!
We had a zone training meeting on Wednesday, and it felt so nice to be
back in my little city. Man, I miss Freiberg sometimes. But Dresden is
also wonderful! So amazing, and so pretty! During the ZTM we talked
about goals, and how there are a lot of goals that we can control, but
there are a lot of other ones that we can't, and we shouldn't always
be so concerned when we don't achieve a goal that was out of our
control, like for baptism. Just because someone decides not to make a
covenant with our Heavenly Father, we shouldn't become mad or upset at
ourselves, everyone has their agency, and they can choose for
themselves. As long as we are doing everything that we can to help and
encourage our friends, then we know we are doing our part.

That was our first trip to Freiberg this week, the second one was a
bit of a surprise. Do you remember our investigator T****? Well, we
had been talking with him about the temple, and on Friday he called us
up and said "hey, can we go to the temple tomorrow?" So we hopped back
on a train with him the next morning and went to Freiberg. It was such
a wonderful experience. The sisters there prepared a very personal
tour of the information center and it really helped to answer a lot of
his questions about temples today, the Holy Ghost, and baptism.

We were so happy to go with our great friend and learn more together
about the blessings of the temple, the only problem was that it's the
end of the month, so we're pretty low on money, and we had to use the
rest of our money to buy the train ticket... Uh oh! We were really
worried that we would be eating straight rice for this next week (we
only have 3€) and then, that night when we were walking home, we
looked on the ground and found 20€! There were no people around, and
all of the stores were closed, so we took it as a sign from heaven
helping us out for this next week. Now we can afford more than just
rice :) And really, this blessing that we had isn't so special, God
will always care for his children when we give everything to him. We
spent all of our money trying to help one of his children, and he
blessed us with just enough so we could eat this week, and we are VERY

I love you, have a great week!

Elder Oliphant Heavy black heart