Monday, June 25, 2012

Cave church

At the bottom of Gellert Hill is the "Cave Church". They have a self-guided tour you can take. It's amazing how well it's been preserved after so many years. The Pauline Monks worshiped there for many years but in 1951 the entire Pauline order of Monks was arrested by the communist government. The head monk was executed, the rest were put into labor camps and the church was sealed behind an eight-foot wall of concrete. In 1989, after the fall of communism in Hungary, the wall was broken down and the cave reopened.

Lunch after Gellert Hill

After our hike up Gellert Hill we stopped at this little cafe to have lunch. They had pictures of the items on the menu, but we discovered pictures can be deceiving. Megan's hamburger was huge. It was hilarious to see her face when the waitress brought it out.

Gellert Hill

Another day we hiked to the top of Gellert Hill. There's a statue about halfway up of St Gellert. He tried to bring Christianity to Hungary. But he was severely persecuted for his beliefs. He was put in a barrel filled with spikes and rolled down the hill.

Fish Pedicure

One day while Megan was here she and I went to have a Fish Pedicure. It was a very interesting experience. It feels a little creepy to have fish eating at your feet. But we had a good time.

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Lilla and Sebastian's Wedding

On June 8, 2012 Megan and I went to Lilla and Sebastion's wedding. She looked beautiful. Her father is in the Stake Pres so I work closely with him at the Center. They were sealed in the London temple the next day. According to the law they must get married in Hungary first and then they are able to go to the temple. Her little sister was adorable. It was a very nice day.

Saturday, June 23, 2012


One night in June we took everyone bowling for Gofri Est. Many of them had never been bowling. I realized after a few minutes that I should have had someone give a few lessons. Elder Reese tried to help but it was difficult to get to everyone. I was afraid some of them were going to break a finger or something the way they were dropping the ball. But they had a great time. It was so much fun.

Kinga's Baptism

In May Kinga was baptized by her boyfriend Ricsi. Ricsi has only been a member for a few months so it was a great experience for both of them. We are excited to have more and more young adults getting baptized and joining us at the Center.

The Ball

Another fun activity we had in May was our Country-Wide Ball. Adri and Ancsa did most of the planning and preparation for it. It was alot of time and work. Wendy, Jeanie and I even bought new clothes for it. We weren't sure what appropriate attire was for a Ball but we knew we didn't have it in our Missionary clothes. At the end of the evening they crowned a King and Queen. It was a very successful evening. Everyone had a great time.

Vegetarian Night

One night for Gofri Est Jeanie and I did a food demonstration. She showed the young adults how to make stuffed zuchinni. I showed them how to do decorative vegetable trays. We also showed them how to make dip for the vegetables. We weren't sure what they would think about the whole idea, but we were pleasantly surprised. They seemed very interested. It was a very fun evening. Livia translated for us. She did a great job. We love her.

Flower Pot w/ Reese and Nabrotzky

As many of you know I love Flowers. So I was planting some new flowers for our balcony off the library. Elder Reese was helping me carry the pots after I was done planting and watering the flowers. We discovered it wasn't draining very well because there were no holes in the bottom of the pot. So "bless his heart" - he agreed to drill a couple of holes in the pot for me. The only problem was he didn't have a drill so it was all manual labor. His companion Elder Nabrotzky helped him. Super nice of both of them. Good news is -- The flowers are doing very well. Bad news-- Elder Reese said his forearms were a little sore the next day. :)

Mother's Day

Mother's Day is a big deal in Hungary as well. They celebrate it on a different Sunday but it's still an important day. We made Mother's Day cards with the young adults and some of the missionaries. They had a great time. The other picture is of the flowers available to purchase in the city square. You see many people carrying flowers around town. I assume to give to their Mother's. Mothers also got flowers at church so it was a fun day.

Carmen Opera

Several months ago I decided I wanted to go to the Opera before I left Hungary. So in May we went to see Carmen. As many of you know it's one of my favorite Operas. The Opera House in Budapest is beautiful. We had such a great time.

Viki's Baptism

Right after we finished with Vivien's baptism we got in the car and drove two hours to get to Pest just in time for Viki's baptism. She has only been investigating the church for a few months but was super interested right from the beginning. She asked Elder Schwieger to baptize her. She is wonderful girl. We are so glad she will be coming to activities at the Center. She's a great addition to our group.

Vivien's Baptism

Lots of people came to support Vivi at her Baptism which was super nice. She has several close friends which will also help her feel comfortable and welcome. The Elders sang a musical number that was very well done. The entire baptismal program was very nice. I was so glad I was able to go and also that I was asked to participate. It was a great experience.

Vivien's Baptism

April 22, 2012 Vivien finally got baptized. She has been investigating the Church for almost two years. Her family was opposed to her joining so she waited for a long time for them to approve. Finally she decided not to wait any longer. We are so happy for her. She asked me and Elder Van Wie to give the talks at her baptism. Dori translated for me. As you can see the suti was ready to be served as soon as the baptism was over. :) She asked Elder Jackson to baptize her. He was super excited. There's no baptismal font in Kaposvar where she lives so the baptism was done in a swimming pool at the local High School. Afterwards we had dessert in one of the classrooms. It was a little unusual to have a baptism in these circumstances, but it was still such a great experience.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Dance Party with Eric and Erika

Eric and Erika were so nice to teach the waltz and cha cha to the young adults for our dance party. After teaching the basic steps, they went around the room and danced with some of the young adults. If the decorations look familiar -- they are. We used the same ones for the New Years Eve party. It's all about staying in our budget. :) We had a great time. Young Adults from all over the country came so that made it even more fun. Of course we had the same problem as we do in the States -- more girls than boys. Eric was busy trying to dance with as many girls as he could so they all had a chance to dance with a guy instead of another girl.

Eric teaching Institute

Friday night -- April 13th, we had a big dance party. Normally Friday the 13th is a good day for me but this particular day we had quite a few things go wrong. First we ran into terrible traffic so we were an hour late getting to the Stake Center. Then I found out about a 15 minutes before Institute was supposed to start that the teacher was stuck on his train. A tree had fallen on the tracks and his train was stopped. So I asked Eric if he would teach the class for me. He was super nice about it. He had 5 minutes to prepare. The lesson was on Agency. Livi translated for him. According to all in attendance the class went well -- so that's always good to hear. I really appreciated his help because I was busy trying to get everything else organized for the party.

Palacsinta with Eric and Erika

One night for Institute we made Palacsintas. We put vanilla pudding, bananas and chocolate topping in the middle and then as you can see, powdered sugar and chocolate topping on top. They were delicious. It was nice to have Eric and Erika there to help make them. The young adults loved them.

Szentendre with Eric and Erika

We had a fun time in Szentendre. Apparently Marty and Eric have similar personalities. Both of them decided to try on interesting masks or hats while they were in Szentendre. I think it's funny that they both found something fun to try. We also tried another special Hungarian pastry - Langos. You can't eat very many of them. They kind of drop to the bottom of your stomach and stay there for the day. :)

Carmen in Budapest

After walking around Castle Hill for a few hours we stopped at a restaurant for dinner. They had musicians playing for everyone. They came over to our table and asked if we had any requests. We couldn't think of anything so he started making suggestions -- anything from a play, a musical, an Opera. Of course as soon as he said Opera I thought of Carmen. It was fabulous. We are actually going to see Carmen at the Opera House in May. I'm very excited.