Sunday, December 29, 2013

Karlovac, Croatia December 23, 2013

Hey Mom!

I'm currently in Karlovac, Croatia right now! The presentation went really well at the Christmas Conference and President asked me and Sister Hendricks to do an exchange this week to train other cities on how to use their English programs more effectively. I'm going to Zagreb on Thursday morning and then flying back to Sarajevo on either Friday night or Saturday morning... by myself! Ah. That will be really weird not having a companion with me.

We went to Zagreb earlier this week for the Christmas Conference and it was really great seeing everyone. The missionaries in Zagreb made some really great food and put on a great event for us. There were a LOT of missionaries, and by the end of it I was feeling a little overwhelmed... we're used to being pretty isolated, but it was still fun catching up with old companions and people from the MTC.

I got some sad news this week-- another elder from my MTC group went home this week. This was the third person from my MTC group to go home early. A lot of people suffer from depression out here, just because we have little contact with other missionaries and it gets pretty cold here in the winter.

Karlovac is great! It's small, but so pretty. I'm serving with Sister B, she's also 23, is a Sister training leader in Croatia and she is an all-star. We get along really well...  one more person I would just love to serve with. The branch is really strong here. All of the members who are married have been sealed in the temple; we have a few returned missionaries, and they're trying to make sure that everyone gets their patriarchal blessing and goes to the temple this year. They are so, so great! Out of all the branches in our mission, this one and the one in Zagreb are the strongest. There is a big push for the members to run the branch, not the missionaries. It was so weird being a branch where we didn't have to do anything on Sunday, other than just sit and talk with the members and investigators.

For Christmas, we don't have a senior couple here, but we are just going to stay here with the Elders and one of their investigators, make dinner at the church and then skype our families. We can only talk for an hour, so get everyone together, come with stories ready to be re-told, and be sure the Wispy Kitten is awake for me to see too! Have you gotten my package yet? I hope it gets to you by Christmas!

Thanks for the Gift of the Magi! I'll print it out and we can read it with the Elders and their investigator on Christmas.

I love you and I'll talk to you soon!!

MERRY CHRISTMAS!!!!

S ljubavlju uvijek,

Katherine

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