Unfortunately, my homemade date treats did not survive the 2.5 week trip to Poland...they had molded. But, the last package I sent contained healthy treats that came from the health store with better packaging, so I'm sure they will make it to him in an edible state! Oh, and it appears that the small blender I sent with him to make smoothies cannot handle the power difference. He says it sparks when he plugs it in! Ya just never know what to expect when you send someone off to another country. :)
He mentions he's been reading Jesus the Christ. I'm actually quite impressed. I've read that book, and it's not light reading material! For a kid who wouldn't read anything with more than 100 pages, he has sure changed. He's read all the scriptures and now this book. Guess it's the reading material that made all the difference.
He gives us some great Polish terms with translation, thankfully!
Mam najdziaga = I have hope!
Nie wiem = I don't know
Other than the treat & blender fail, all's well on the Poland mission front.
My husband and I just love early morning Monday emails, especially today's...it contains lots of details!
"Papa! Hey! It's good to hear from you! That's amazing that you're in Alma! I love Alma so much, it's probably one of my favorite books, for sure! And Alma 32 is such a power house! I love how he describes faith to the people and that it's like a seed growing. That we must nourish it constantly or else it goes bad and we cast it out. That whole chapter is my favorite! You should check out Ether chapter 12. I read that this morning and it's so powerful! I'm almost done with the Book of Mormon again. That's so awesome you're reading it too. It truly is an amazing book and inspiring! I believe it's true without any doubt and that this is the most important book that mankind will ever have! It helps me every single day and I'm glad it does yours, too!"
"I'm glad you had such a good Christmas party! Tell Nic and Heidi hi and the kids! How are they? I miss your lessons in Elder's Quorum. You're such a good teacher! How is Steve?"
"P days in Poland are really good! They are super flippin busy! Like we have a normal day with studies, then email for about an hour, then we go do something until 6:00. Usually we go check out historical sites or go get some pirogi! YOU WOULD LOVE POLISH FOOD! It's so hearty! But, P days are crazy, usually we get with our district and figure out something to do, then after 6:00 we go back to proselyting and tracting and teaching lessons. We are always super busy! I love it so much, it's tiring, but worth it because I'm learning so much. I'm surrounded in the arms of God and the Gospel everyday. I would suggest a book to you and Mom, it's Jesus the Christ. It's huge but I'm reading it, and it's so good!"
"Mom! Hey! I got your package!!!!! But the stinkin dates were moldy :( but it's okay, I kinda thought they would be. It took like 2 and a half weeks to get here. But that's okay because I have the best mom ever who still made them and sent them, so thank you so much! OHHH, and if you could send me a list of your healthy recipes to cook because I'm forgetting how you used to cook and what you used! And how to make date treats?? I need a food processor, don't I?"
"Thank you for everything you sent, I am super grateful! I gave a copy of my CDs to Prsident Nielson and his wife and will be giving one to Elder Fletcher before he goes home. Oh and thank you for the tea and letters! Fletcher loves his, too. I have a package coming your way!!!!! It's a bunch of sweet Polish gifts for you and Dad. Everything in Pland is way cheap, so don't worry. And that picture of the Christmas tree! Yeah, me and Fletcher were there the last P day and got a couple pics of it. They're on the SD card I sent home. That tree is in a place called Old Town, a.k.a. Rynek. Get on Google pics and type in Warsaw Old Town Rynek. That where we were. It's soooooo beautiful! Like truly the definition of an old European town."
"You can tell when a word is Polish. It looks something like this, "zsczczsecze". Like the word "happiness" is szczecie. LOL! Poland is truly everything but a thousand times better than I could ever have expected! And the amazing miracle of my Polish becoming better through the gift of tongues and through God makes everything even better. I can understand people now and respond to them! I LOVE IT HERE!! AND LIFE, SO MUCH :)"
"The most incredible miracle happened last night, actually! I called I-------- to get his address so I could drop of the Arabic and English Books of Mormon and it turns out he lives literally ten feet away from us!! He met us outside and let us in and we had one of the most incredible meetings we have had yet! We taught him a bit about the Gospel and praying to God and he informed us a lot of what Muslims believe and how they pray (which is a lot like yoga/music praying). It's so cool! He gave us these pamphlets that tell what Muslims believe and it's amazing how similar they are to us! And that's funny you ask, he is actually getting me a Koran in English, so I will ask him for another and send it home to you."
"After we had that amazing lesson, we truly became friends at the end. We prayed with him and I prayed for his well being, and he was so astonished that we pray directly to God in a two way conversation. He felt the Spirit so strongly! And afterwards, he gave me his brand new Yamaha guitar because he said he doesn't play it and he wants me to have it. Hahahahahaha!!!! I didn't deny it because you don't deny a Muslim gift, so now I have a guitar! We are best friends, for sure!"
"I love you so much! Thank you for being the greatest mom I could ever ask for. I am so blessed. I am proud to be your son and here on a mission! I'm not sure what time I'll be calling. I'll let you know as soon as I find out. I wish you an amazing week. I gotta go. Love - Elder Kotter"