Elder Christopher Russell, Donetsk Ukraine Mission July 2010 - July 2012

Christopher Russell was found worthy to serve a proselyting mission for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day-Saints, and received his mission call from President Thomas S. Monson to serve in the Ukraine, Donetsk Mission.

Chris will spend the first twelve weeks of his mission at the Mission Training Center in Provo Utah learning, Russian.

On October 13, 2010 he will start his journey to the Ukraine.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

The Secret Life of a Russian Speaking Missionary

From: Christopher Russell

Date: Tuesday, August 17, 2010, 1:29 PM

Hello everyone!

So I guess this week I'll disclose the secret life of a russian speaking missionary. We are learning the Russian lessons (so far we can teach how the gospel blesses families and that god loves you) but so far we have only taught in english. We do our approaches, bear testimony, and pray in russian too. And we do SYL during lunch.

On an average day we have 7 hrs of class time and close to 4 hrs of MDT(missionary directed time) as well as 50 min of gym time. I can't really describe Sundays but there's 8 hrs of study time then there's: sacrament, priesthood, fireside, and then a film. P-Day we have 3.5 hours of studying and 2 hrs of Devotional/devotional review time. The only time that I have to write letters is during a three hour slot where we need to do laundry as well. Temple is every tuesday morning.

The food is about the same as at BYU but the lines are insanely worse since they schedule 1/3 of all the missionaries for the same time zone and we happen to be the time where the cafeteria opens so we can't show up early to beat the lines. For learning Russian we read, memorize phrases, and practice different cases (french doesn't have cases so it's weird).

My companion is from Vernal,Utah he's a bit of a germophobe and likes sci-fi shows (just like me) so it's fun. He takes a while to get ready in the morning and needs to wash his hands fairly often...but it's fine, I'm patient. His grandparents were in the MTC for a few weeks so I got to meet them and we sat down and had meals together. They're gone now to Nauvoo.

Every week that we are here we get $6 added to our card that we can use for things like extra food, candy, and supplies. I can get an oil vial here with that money.

This week we taught our progressive investigator again and he didn't pray about the Book of Mormon because he didn't see why he needed to. Needless to say he asked other questions as well (too many to write) and we were stumped. But the coolest thing happened, 30 minutes before we were going to teach him we decided to scrap the original lesson and focus on his commitment, which meant we were prepared a little bit for it. Tomorrow we teach the plan of salvation to a random volunteer for the first time so it should be really good.

I got the package from the Rixners on Friday (Thank you!!!!!) and I'm glad to see that California weather is back to normal.

Love you all!

Elder Pyccл

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