NOTE: I wrote this in October 2012 but forgot to post it??
We went to our regular ward today in Pest. It is called the Pest Ward or the International Ward, since they have translation for us who do not speak Magyar. Most of the Senior Missionaries here in Pest go to this ward because of the language issues. There is a box of earphones for us and someone sits in the back of the chapel and translates for us. I wanted to share some things that we assume are typical to small wards and branches – especially in these new-to-the-gospel lands.
First off, a young girl got up to bear her testimony. I believe she is 11. Her mother died 2 months ago and she is an orphan. She and her mother were the only members of their family to join the Church. Not sure where the father is or who is caring for her now. I know that the Relief Society was asked to bring dinners for quite a while after her mother’s death. She told how sad she was when her mother died but now she has hope and she knows the Church is true and was thankful for it. Of course, not many dry eyes during that testimony!
The organist is an oriental young woman of age 14. Her family does not speak Magyar. The father works in Budapest. The chorister is a young woman of 13, whose family also does not speak Magyar. One of the former counselors to the Bishop (just released) is from Germany and works here. He does not speak Magyar and is now on the Stake High Council for the third time.
There have been some new families that have moved into this ward. One from America (can’t remember from where exactly) and they will be here for 2-3 years. Another family just moved in from Utah. Today was their first day to Church here. The mother just had her 9th child. Their oldest child is 15. Her husband was a former Hungarian Missionary 20 years ago – when the Church first came into Hungary. They felt that the Lord sent them here and the family has been learning Magyar for the past 3 years. The father got his job here through the internet. (The mother’s parents are serving a YSA mission in Norway!) She has been home-schooling her children. They since have been asked to attend the Érd Branch, where their talents can be more fully utilized!
Our YSA are an active presence in this ward and others – serving in various positions, such as RS counselors, EQ presidencies, Mission Leaders, teachers, etc.
Yesterday, we went to the Kispest Ward Open House. The YSA were out in strong numbers there, also. Every person feels needed in countries like these. The Kispest Bishop was excited that some local dignitaries came to visit the Open House as well as a Roman Catholic Priest. Hopefully, this open house will bring in some new members and reactive some others.
The Lord’s vineyard continues to grow.