We can see our teaching pool slowly growing as we consistently do our best to be obedient and to use our time effectively.
We met with a wonderful woman who's been in Salt Lake because her company (4Life) that she works for is based out of Sandy. The founders of her company are currently serving a mission in Brazil. She went on and on about how much she loves Salt Lake, and it's easy to tell that she feels the Spirit. She also said that she leaves her Book of Mormon by her TV so that she remembers to read it, and she tells her kids that they can't move it. She is so prepared! We really hope that we can meet with her whole family this week and help her get to church. (She was one of five people who said they would come to church and either cancelled that morning or just didn't show up, but next week!)
On Saturday we met with a less-active who just got back from visiting her daughter in China. We decided to not call and just drop by with banana bread, and after sharing a spiritual thought and looking at her pictures that she took in China, she said, "I think I have some free time tomorrow and will come to church." And she did!!! She came with her two grandsons. What a total miracle. I don't think she's been to church while I've been in Ulan-Ude.
There's been some kind of a forest fire going on around Baikal. It's been going for a long time, and there's been this haze over the city for several days. One of our investigators who's been in Irkutsk said that the haze is over there too. However, today it looks like it's starting to clear up. It feels like the weather might be starting to take a turn toward autumn. Summer's coming to a close, and school here starts on September 1st.
And, by the way, Flip is back!!!!!!!!!! She called us on Saturday and said that she would be back in Ulan-Ude Sunday morning, and she told us about how she was so excited to see us and talk, and she even said she would come to church. That changed the next morning when she was tired from her long train ride, but we met with her last night, and she believes the Book of Mormon and this church are true! She said that she loves to read the Book of Mormon, and she showed us where she's been reading and highlighting and where some of her favorite verses and subject are. It was an amazing lesson. She totally believes. When we brought up baptism, she said she wants to study and doesn't want to get baptized too quickly, but we are just happy to have her back.
Sister Wilson and I have also developed a routine for what we do when all our plans fall through. We find an address, contact on the way, and tract the stairwell where the address is. We had two people in one stairwell say that we could visit again. One of them even let us in and listened to the 1st lesson right there. It's so cool to see how things are slowly starting to sprout here. Step by step, these people will progress toward baptism.
Speaking of baptism, the elders here had another baptism before church on Sunday. The woman who was baptized is the mom of the member whose funeral we went to. She and the man who was baptized last week both received the Holy Ghost during sacrament. Sister Wilson gave a great 10 minute talk during sacrament, and so did the dad of the Ukrainian family. I love our branch!!!
Last thing: transfers were this week. Sister WIlson and I are staying together for another two months, and both of the elders here are training. Also, President Perkinson visited us and had a district training meeting, and he said that there are now going to be sister trianing leaders in every city, so I'm also a sister training leader. He and Sister Perkinson treated us to a nice lunch at the hotel they were staying at, the Sagaan Morin (which means white horse in buryatskii).
Wow, I think that was everything, or at least everything I have time for. Have a wonderful week!