Friday, March 27, 2015

Learning, Growing, Running

Family, friends, past companions, and other homies,
Let me tell you about my week:
Sunday, we went and visited Sora Natica. She is a member of the branch that is dying. Yes. That sounds very morbid but literally she is very very sick and she is dying. This is the closest I have been to death in my life and I do not like it. She fell and hit her head a couple weeks ago and since then she just has not been able to get better. She isn't very coherent but her son who takes care of her and also has autism told us he was expecting us today at church. So we went over and just began to read the Book of Mormon starting at first nephi chapter 1. As I was finishing the last verse of Nephi, Sora Natica sits up in bed and I can see her out of the corner of my eye and I am thinking "Wow we just worked a miracle with the Book of Mormon". She sits up and "blahhhhhhh" projectile vomits LL OVER US! She then continued to throw up for about 5 minutes. It was the most heart breaking thing. We had no way to help and then her son was like should we keep reading? We were so traumatized. I am still traumatized from it and we have to go back there on Tuesday and CLEAN. I don't know if we can do it. Okay so that was Sunday.
Tuesday we got a call from a very angry Romanian lady official that told us she was going to charge us 100 lei for each of the 100 English posters we had put up. So that morning we ran around Constanta with exacto knives ripping down posters. It was intense. It was like we were in SWAT. We all called each other and said We are heading north you go south you hit the park. haha I could totally join the CIA after this. We also had 60 people at English WOOT WOOT! 
Wednesday we had a lesson with a member. We invited her to do service for another sister in the branch and she said "Why we would I do that? They can do it themselves." So yeah that lesson was not effective. I also had like 100 and something degree fever that night.
Thursday was just hard. We English block stuffed in the morning, meaning we walked from block to block putting English cards in mailboxes. Then we went and visited a member that lives kind of far from Constanta. It was actually a really cool visit, she told us about how when she was in Italy, she had been in the Hospital and the whole relief society had gone to see her in the Hospital. She got teary eyed when she told us the story. It was just a testimony to me of how important the organization of the Church is.
Then Friday my fever was still going strong, we had district meeting. It was super super cool. We all brought our favorite spiritual songs. I showed a version of "Abide with Me" that is the coolest dog. I love how it is basically us just begging Christ to stay with us. Okay also we got TRAPPED ON A BUS. So Sora Sayre and I hopped on a bus to go get some work done, we forgot to stamp our tickets right when we got on the bus. So then I looked at Sora Sayre and I said "oh shoot we need to stamp our tickets." We had literally been on the bus for about 2 minutes. So we walked over and STAMPED our tickets, I repeat we STAMPED our tickets. Then a couple minutes later this lady walks over to us and pulls out this controller badge. Her job is to go around the bus making sure everyone pays for their tickets. So we show her our STAMPED tickets meaning that we paid, and she rips them out of her hands and demands 100 lei from each us. We were both pretty shocked because we had PAID. So then she explains to us that we had waited too long to stamp our tickets and that if we want to get off the bus we have to give her 100 lei each. By this point in my week I. was. so. done. This whole exchange is in Romanian by the way. I just looked at this lady, who at this point had us corralled into the back of the bus and was physically holding us back there. I just said we don't have any money, then she said okay 50 each and I said we still do not have any money so then she says fine we are going to the police. I said fine let's got to the police. She then tried to get us to give her our passports and that was not happening, so we just kind of stood back there and laughed because that was all we could do at that point.After about 20 minutes of riding the bus and yelling at each other in Romanian and a couple of escape attempts, this other Romanian lady got on the bus looks at us and distracts the controller she then mouths "fugiti" which means run! I grabbed Sora Sayre and we just booked it off the bus! It was insane. We got off ran around to the backside of a bloc and half laughed half cried for a couple minutes. It was one of those it is hard to be a missionary moments. If I did not have the name of Jesus Christ on my chest I would have ran that lady over SO FAST, but as a missionary that is not an option.
Saturday we had 'gris' night! Gris is this Nigerian food that is super spicy and super yummy. We planned this activity for all the Nigerians to come to the church and see who we are. We were planning on about 45 people and 6 came. That was kind of the perfect end to this week.
Sunday I gave a talk, I did not talk for 30 minutes this time I kept it short. I told the story about me and Austin breaking Roman's motorcycle helmet and tied into obedience. 

This church is still true, this week was nuts, but I have grown closer to my savior this week and I am so grateful for that. I am grateful for these insane experiences and I know that through the power of prayer ALL things are possible!

I love you all so much, have a great week!
Sora Armstrong

Friday, March 20, 2015

Another Crazy Week?!?!

This week was crazy! Constanta is awesome. We met the first member of romania ever he was baptized by elder utchdorf in germany during the communist times. Then president utchdorf told him he needed to come back and build up the church here so he did. We had 34 people in church this week and we started teaching a woman from moldova and she said she would prepare for baptism in april!!!! We are pumped about that. Two soras were added to constanta and yeah it is interesting. I am working on patience this transfer. The idea of patience is actually really really cool. I heard a quote that said that patience is accepting that there is a divine rhythm to life. Having patience isn't just enduring it is learning from our trials and coming to love the process of repentance. Constanta is a resort town but a lot of people live here also kind of like san diego
the area is nuts some awesome things are happening here everybody in the district is doing their best to be obedient and the miracles that are happening are incredible. we had 6 investigators in church yesterday! We teach a lot in english and so I am really worried about my romanian I liked how I was progressing in the language but I feel like I am losing it. Not good.
Our apartment is right on the water we run on the sand almost everyday and I LOVE IT!!!! 
This week we had a lesson with Mercy. She is awesome. She is preparing for baptism and had some questions about the Priesthood. Sora Sayre and I didn't feel like we could do it justice so we invited Elder Alston to come on our next lesson. He and his wife have been serving here for about a year and are INCREDIBLE. Elder Alston lives by the young missionaries standards, he has this awesome understanding of the bible and is a HUGE help to us teenagers out here. It was AMAZING!!!! He just sat there and taught with so much power about the priesthood, where it came from, how it works, why we need it. Then he gave her a blessing. HOLY COW! The spirit was tangible. He blessed her with the strength to continue to move towards baptism, he blessed her to be able to recognize the spirit as she studies and prays. I cannot explain with words how strongly I felt the spirit in that room. The priesthood is quite literally, the power of God given to men to do his work on this earth. Mercy was very doubtful about the necessity for baptism before the lesson but after you could just see that her doubts had been pacified. I know that our Heavenly Father loves each of us and is mindful of what we need. He wants each of us to move closer to him, no matter the stage of life we are in. Whether we go to church or have never heard of the bible He loves us. No matter where we are at, we can begin to grow closer to him simply by beginning to pray. This is my call to action for all you seniors couples trying to decide what to do with your life: COME TO ROMANIA!!!! The Lord needs you here. The Alston's are leaving and this mission will be have a huge hole in it because of their absence. Update me on your lives if you have time this week, I love hearing from everyone!
Va Iubesc,
Sora Armstrong

Tuesday, March 10, 2015


What an INSANE week ahhhhhhhhh. Okay so I was in Buch from Monday to Wednesday. I taught some really cool lessons with Sora Nichols a sora that just finished training. We met Sora Gorzo. She is a missionary legend and one of the strongest members in Buch. She is the coolest little lady. We also went to Chisimigiu Park and read the dedicatory prayer for Romania, it was given by Elder Nelson in the exact spot we were standing. The spirit was so strong. President Ivory bore testimony about the vision that he has for Romania. There are so many incredible promises, that we are beginning to see fulfilled and it is so exciting. But at the same time we have a lot of work ahead of us. President Ivory bore testimony that the only way this work will happen is if we are all bought into being obedient. This has been a pretty prominent theme in the mission as of late. This mission is changing and it is an incredible thing to see.
Okay so wow so much has happened. I said goodbye to Sora Allen that was really really sad. Then I said hello to Sora Sayre. She is AWESOME. I have been so blessed with awesome companions. Sora Sayre is a pro at quoting movies, and just kind of acts like a character out of a Disney movie so we are always laughing. She has been in Constanta for awhile and her love for this branch is so strong. 
The Branch Let me tell about this branch. We have four Nigerian guys, that are studying here, we have a marine, we have a rugby player from Australia, then we have an AWESOME senior couple. Then we have a returned sister missionary that just got back from Canada, then we have about 5 Romanian ladies in relief society, two Romanian families and a couple of old men. It is a very very diverse branch. There is English translation going on every single hour of church. With this group church will never be boring.
Funny Story, yesterday during sacrament they invited each of the new missionaries up to introduce themselves as I was trying to get out of my row of chairs I tripped over the lady sitting next to me and ate it! Fell right on my behind. Everyone started cracking up. I popped right up, got up to the podium and right before I began to speak, the branch president said now we will never forget you. haha it was CLASSIC. So embarrassing but now everyone knows me. Every said I recovered pretty well from it though. Probably because I am used to being on the ground a lot. 
Okay now MIRACLES. This week Elder Allphin started teaching a FAMILY. Meaning a mom  a dad and THREE YOUNG WOMEN AGED GIRLS AHHHHHH! We got to have young women's with them yesterday and it was INCREDIBLE. We watched the Elaine S. Dalton talk We are Daughters of our Heavenly Father. Before we watched the talk we asked the girls to really focus on how they felt as they were watching it. Afterwards we asked them how they felt and they said that they felt so good. That they felt love. It was like a light had turned on behind their eyes. The spirit witnessed to them they were daughters of a Heavenly Being who knows them and loves them. They said they loved how Sora Dalton talked about our faith, and how if exercise our faith we can feel God's love. These girls are just so in touch with the spirit. They thought it was hilarious when I tripped in sacrament meeting, they all just busted up into giggles and they told us to come with the Elders to teach them! I am so pumped for them!
Okay now the HOTEL FLORA. This is a hotel in Constanta full of Nigerian students, studying engineering at some of the universities here. They are all incredibly intelligent and so in touch with the gospel. There was one member Shaddrack (They all have really cool names) who got baptized in Nigeria. He came to the branch here and so far THREE other guys have been baptized. Right now we are working with Mercy, she has a baptismal date for this month and we are pushing to have her ready. She had questions about how we know that this is the only true church and if she has already been baptized why does she need to be baptized again. We had the opportunity to testify to her (in English so weird) of the priesthood authority. As we testified I felt the spirit confirm to me that we do have the AUTHORITY OF GOD on the earth today. How incredible is that? Through that authority we can be cleansed from all of our sins and be renewed EACH week. Mercy, understood us and committed herself to reading the Book of Mormon and praying about this church. She came to church (she was the one that tripped me) and loved it. I am so excited for her, she is such a beautiful person. I cannot wait to teach her more and get her ready! 
Miracles are happening in Constanta. I LOVE IT HERE. Not to mention I run ON THE BEACH every morning and get to see the sunrise. I am in a beautiful city, with an incredible district, we are going to do some SERIOUS work this transfer I am pumped.
Jesus Christ lives. We have on earth today HIS restored gospel. I am so grateful for it!
Cu Drag,
Sora Armstrong

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Brittany's Going to the Beach.....

Just a quick update this week: Brittany was transferred to  Constanta, which is located on the coast of the Black Sea, about 3hrs from Bucharest. She says she is looking forward to morning beach runs in the sand.....She'll probably start that in a few months since the current morning temperature in Constanta is 39 degrees, but you never know with Sora B!!!

Below are some pictures Brittany sent and an excerpt from the blog of Sora Parr, who Brittany has been serving with for the last few months in Ploiesti:

Transfer boards came out Sora Uhl and I get to stay together!!! We are SO happy about it. We finally feel like we know the city and are ready to take off this transfer :) Sora Allen is getting a Baby!!!! we're super excited because we get to be the fun aunts! Sora Armstrong is leaving but...... she's going to Constanta which is sooo cool!. Seriously she is an amazing missionary, she bore her testimony in sacrament and the spirit was So strong. I'm going to miss her so much, she is going to do amazing things in Constanta.