Monday, February 6, 2012

Zone Conferences- first stop- Katowice 6 Feb 2012

The Katowice Zone: Sisters Stay, Folsom, Modzelewska. Elders Hayes, Manwill, Pofelski, Gudnason, Van Bakel, Buckner, Waits, Hillyard, Klosowiak, Vreeken, Sheridan, Jensen with Sisters Marshall and Forsey. Seated are Elder and Sister McGrath. What a fabulous zone!

The day started as the Elders met us at our Hotel and carried over to the chapel the supplies for the conference. It's a chilly 2 degrees; but Elders Van Bakel, Vreeken, Dabrowski, Jensen, Krzyminski and Gudnason were eager to help.

After the morning session with President and me adding a few thoughts, it was lunch time. Sister McGrath did the entire lunch by herself...homemade shredded turkey sandwiches and polish soup. What a huge help this was---especially since there was not room for me to bring even paper plates with all the supplies we were taking down to the south! Thank you Sister McGrath! The entire Zone loved your cooking and delicious food.

Elders Hayes and Van Bakel who were MTC companions are "role playing" with Elder Hillyard on how hungery missionaries can eat quickly and consume a lot of food.

On the other side of the room the polite onlookers are Elders Sheridan, Klosowiak, Buckner, Krzyminski and Dabrowski. Our lunch break was for about 25 minutes---it was fun to visit and to catch up on the many things going on in the mission.

Patryk, a returned missionary from Ireland who is visiting family in Katowice, came by and joined us. He was a great missionary. Sisters Forsey, Modzelewska, Elders Van Bakel and Gudnason join him. This is our international group: Sister Modzelewska (Poland), Patryk (Poland and Ireland), Van Bakel (Netherlands), Gudnason (Iceland) and Sister Forsey (Highland...).

The Sisters serving in the Katowice Zone: Sisters McGrath, Marshall, Modzelewska, Forsey, Folsom and Stay. It is so great to have the best sister missionaries all serving in Poland.

Those in the Zone that will be or did celebate a birthday since our last conference were: Sister Folsom, Elders Pofelski and Klosowiak. For some reason we celebrate Elder Jensen's birthday every month. We aren't sure how this started, but we don't celebrate a birthday in the Katowice area without him standing in the group. He doesn't complain...he loves the cookies!

A few Zone Conferences ago, we held a Preach My Gospel Chase. Today we held a "surprise" White Missionary Handbook Chase. Everyone of our missionaries had their handbooks with they should have! We read a question; and everyone found the page, paragraph and answer to the question. Everyone did very well.

Elder Jensen and Van Bakel did very well in every round. The Sisters (Folsom, Stay and Modzewelska) did great also.

This was really good as companionships found the answers together and helped each other. As missionaries, they read 3 pages out of their White Handbooks each day during Companionship Study.

As I said, everyone did great and they knew where all the answers were. This went really fast They were well prepared, even though this was a surprise chase.

As mentioned in the White Missionary Handbook, you don't keep score as to not be competitive. However, there was one companionship that really knew all of the answers: Elders Jensen and Van Bakel. Their prize...a favorite Hot Chocolate mix for the cold mornings we are experiencing now.

Again, according to the White Missionary Handbook, you don't keep score. We only "played half court", and everyone received a prize. Elder and Sister McGrath are helping me pass out Vitamin C drops for everyone to enjoy and use. Always trying to keep the missionaries healthy!

After the Assistants presented their part of the training, the Zone Leaders in Katowice, Elders Waits and Klosowiak, gave their presentation. They both did a wonderful job, and got everyone involved in "role play" and discussions.

The Wroclaw District: Elders Buckner (District Leader) and Hayes with Sisters Folsom, Stay and Modzelewska (from Warsaw serving a mini-mission).

The Krakow District: Elders Gudnason (Kielce), Vreeken (Kielce), Manwill (Krakow), Hillyard (District Leader, Krakow), Pofelski (Krakow) and Sheridan (Krakow).

The Katowice District: Elders Jensen (District Leader) and Van Bakel with Sisters Marshall and Forsey; Elders Klosowiak and Waits (Zone Leaders). Elder and Sister McGrath--our great Senior couple. Elder McGrath is the Branch President of the Katowice Branch.

It just so happened to be Elder McGrath's birthday today. I think he said he was in his 30's... When we sang our 'Sto Lat' birthday song, he was out assisting with an apartment the Elders had recently moved out of.... So we celebrated with him when he got back.

Thank you Katowice Zone for a great day and the wonderful spirit that we felt. This work is true. Not much can be better than a great Zone Conference...and we had one!

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