Clarice Harrison, a native of Orem, Utah is answering a call to serve the Lord in the Yekaterinburg Russia Mission for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints for the next 18 months. She will be inviting people in Russia to come unto Christ.

Monday, April 30, 2012

2012 April 30

A fun experience I had this week that could only happen in Ufa: yesterday we had only a couple more lessons that we needed to reach our goals for the week. We had called every one we thought reasonably possible trying to find a meeting with some one but we had no luck. SO we decided to hit the street and find some people to talk to. While we were talking to one lady a man stopped and I started talking to him. Here is where the uniqueness of Ufa kicks in. This man told me that he had read the BOM 10 years ago and had met with missionaries. Then he explained that now he is a devout Muslim. He said that he could never understand why Jesus Christ is needed. This turned into a conversation about repentance. He told us Muslims repent through prayer and fasting and traveling to Mecca. Sis W and I explained to him how we repent, but then told him that that was not enough. Because we are imperfect we can never repent enough. We will never become worthy enough to live with God though our own efforts and that is why we need Jesus Christ. It was a really fun conversation. If anything it helped me again understand why we need Jesus Christ better. He didn't want to even take an invitation to church afterwards. We run into a lot of Muslims here. There is even a mechet(mosque) in our area.
We had a really good meeting with a family of investigators on Friday. The mom and dad are K and U and they have a daughter K (6) and a cousin N (8). The sisters have been meeting with them for a couple of months now , but they haven't been able to focus on them as much because they had been preparing the Armenian family for baptism. K is almost done with reading the BOM, but she still has doubts about being baptized again. They all pray together as a family. The best part is U really participates with his family. He even prayed for the lesson. You can tell that he loves his wife and the two little girls. He has never been baptized before. We brought a recently returned missionary member with us to help us teach the plan of salvation. The member got married last year and his wife is about to give birth. He shared a really sweet testimony about eternal families. And then he told them that they in the end could become Gods (little bit too much information for new investigators). We think this family has a lot of potential. Sis W especially is hoping that they will be baptized this transfer.
We have another investigator named Z (Ufa has a lot of interesting names) who has nicknamed me Mary Poppins. She has investigated for a long time now. We are trying to help her have spiritual experiences connected with the BOM right now. She goes to some kind of reformed Christian church. She says that she likes the doctrine in the other church better, but likes the people in our church. We don't quite know what to do with her.
On Saturday we went to a birthday party for one of the Armenian families. I think there are 4 Armenian families now that are members. All of the women are members and none of the men. We did some Armenian dancing. It was way fun.
Don't know much what else to say. Love you all!!!!!!

Sis Harrison

We saw a lot of miracles this week. First off Pres Rust let us go with him to Chelyabinsk to see Sis Zaharova's brother get baptised!!!!!! He got baptised!!!! Isn't that so great! Sis Rust called us Thursday night and invited us to go drive down with them. Vitaly (her brother) got baptised in a slightly frozen lake which was crazy. I have some pretty cool pictures. I will try to send them sometime. Sis Denning was one of the sisters that taught Vitaly before she came to Ekat to serve with me. It was so fun to see Sis Zaharova again. She is doing well and said that she wants to go back on a mission as soon as she can. She has also been able to talk to our investigator V on the internet a bit about what he read because she read it all before she got baptised. So that has been good.
This week a lot of our investigators came to church! We had two in the Shartashki branch and 3 in the Verhisveski ( I am not sure how to spell it). One of the 3 is T our new investigator. She came with a teacher and another student from the university to learn about our church and ended up staying and talking with us after the teacher and other student left. She already has a good grasp of what feeling the Holy Ghost is and she said she felt it while she was in our church. Also A and her Mom were able to come to church. This was so good because we haven't seen A in a couple of week because she has been so busy with school. She is still doing really well and her mom likes us a lot and told us she has been reading the french BOM that we gave her and she likes what she has been reading.
We met with V and tried to do some damage control. I think he could pull through. He is praying every morning and night. Although he hasn't started reading the BOM again. He is still really friendly with us and it just feels like we still have a normal relationship even though all the bad things he read on the internet really hurt him. He also came to the church after all the meetings just to talk to us and Pres Rust happened to be there. Pres Rust loves basketball and talked to him a bit about it. Pres Rust doesn't speak any Russian and V really doesn't understand English, but they threw out some names of players that they both understood. How come no one told me the NBA or whatever no longer exists? It turns out we might have to give him to the Elders because Pres Rust has told us now he want younger men meeting with the Elders and younger women meeting with the Sisters. V told us this week that he could never get baptized because he can't give up tea and coffee (he read something online about the word of wisdom). Its funny he has thought about baptism like that.
Our Babuska V came to church also. We met her when some members invited her to a lesson we had set up with them a couple weeks ago. It is so great when the members support their friends when they come to church. These members, the Bashkirovi, served a mission as a couple several years ago and so they know all about helping people come to church and everything. We also talked to V this week about baptism and she has a desire to get baptized. We haven't set a date yet with her but we are thinking and praying about one.There were other things that happened, but not enough time to write them all. I just have to say that I feel so blessed to be serving in Ekat. I love you all!!!!!!
Sis Harrison

February 27, 2012

2012 February 27,

We had a good week this week. Some highlights were: We went sign boarding with the Elders. I never realized how trapped we had become in our habit of contacting the same way until we tried something new. It was fun. We got a couple of numbers and the elders set up meetings with them already. We had a good lesson with some active members in our area and committed the wife to invite some of her friends to the Relief Society activity that was on Saturday. She didn't end up coming to the Activity on Saturday, but she brought a friend, L, to church! And we were able to set up a meeting with her too. It was also really cool to see V be baptized this last Saturday. It was great to see all the members and friends who came to support her. We invited our investigator Tanya to the young single adult activity that happened on Saturday and she was able to come. She didn't quite feel that comfortable probably because there were so many boys there and none were really that outgoing. It is interesting to me how many young single adult boys that we have in Ekat. Where are all their wives? The activity was  a delayed Valentine's day party and the member to organized it did an awesome job. Her name is Masha and she is my friend. She served on a mission and got back a couple of years ago. She is an angel! She made all these fun challenges for every one to do and every thing was related to stories from the Bible and Valentines day. We also got to help at the Colton's English course this week. It's not English club because it is suppose to be connected to the institute program and is suppose to be only for members. Right now there are more non members than members who have shown up. It is a good thing though because that means that the members have invited their friends to come. We missionaries are not aloud to invite any one to the course. We had a lady who does not live in our area call us up last night and ask us if we would be willing to meet her friend to take her to a Relief Society activity that is suppose to happen this next month. It is so fun when you find out that the members trust you enough to recommend their friends to you. Sis F's visa trip is coming up this week. We were talking about it and it really is so weird that she is going back to Finland to the city where her parents live. Her biggest fear is that there will be a problem with her visa and she will have to stay there all weekend and have to go to church there and see all her friends in her old clothes that she has been wearing for several days. :D To have such problems! It is interesting that she got to serve in Russia at all because other people that she knows from Finland were called to Russia but they had visa problems and so were re-assigned. Its probably because she has an American passport that she got to serve here at all. Love you all!!!!!!!!!!!

Sis Harrison