Tuesday, July 20, 2010


Hello everybody!!!!!
So transfers are here again!!!!!!!! Can you believe that??? Well what do you think is happening to me?..................... Well I am staying here in Irkutsk!!!! I am very happy because I love this city. Well my companion was transfered to Novosibirsk so I will be getting a new companion, but it is a little different then usual. My new companion is what we call a mini missionary. She isn't actually a missionary but she's a member from one of the cities in our mission. She is from Tomsk. Right now we have a lack of sister missionaries in our mission, so when that happens the President finds some worthy young sisters who can serve for a transfer. Her name is Lyuda and i hear she is great. So this transfer will be a little different but I'm sure it will be great.
Well great news!!!!! Natasha was baptized!!!! YAY!!! It was such a great service and she was soooo happy. I am so happy for her. It has been so amazing to see her from beginning to end. Of course when I say the end I mean to her baptism, of course there is much more we need to do after baptism. Well anyway she has been interested in the church since we first started teaching her and has grown so much and has changed many things to follow the savior and his teachings. She is great because she is always asking quesiton and wanting to know what she can do to be better.
So this last week we had an activity with the whole branch. My companion and one of the girls from the branch planned it and it was great. The branch here really needs to strenthen their relationships with each other so they can make the branch stronger. These branches are small, not like our wards in america. Well this activity was great and a lot of the members came and they had a lot of fun with each other. Unity is so important with a branch or ward. We need to always work together to strengthen the church where we are a part of it. The thing is that here in russia missionary work is a lot different then in america. We work very close with the members because they themselves are new converts and need to be strengthened. We have many activities and things we do with the members to help them and then ultimately they help us with our missionary work. The members are a very important part to missionary work.
Im so greatful for this oppurtunity to serve a mission. The work is hard, long, and sometimes it feels like its not going anywhere, but the best part is that as we continue working hard through the hard times the Lord always helps us to do his work. We are working very hard here in Russia to bring these people this joy from the gospel and that work we are doing is with investigators, inactive members, less active members, active members, and non members. This work is so amazing. This mission is the best thing that has ever happened to me. To this point of my life I have never felt more joy then i have while being on my mission. It is so joyful to serve and help people come unto christ. I currently have only 4 transfer left and it breaks my heart. I feel like i could stay here forever serving these people. This makes me want to work even harder, i know my time is becoming shorter with everyday, so I must work the most I can everyday so i can complete the work the Lord has for me. I love being a missionary.
Well I am out of time again and I am sorry i didnt send pics next week for sure I will :)

I love you all so so so so so much!!! Have great week :)

Saturday, July 17, 2010

7.6.10 and 7.13.10

Hello again from Russia!!!!!
So it has been another week, interesting week I'd say. Well told you about my tooth last week right..... well last wednesday wasnt quit the end of the story. Well my tooth was pulled on Monday and then on Tuesday and Wednesday the area where it was pulled still hurt really bad. We finally called my dentist and she said to come back in. So i went on Thursday and she said i had an infection. What had happened was when she pulled the tooth the blood clot in the hole didnt form fast enough which caused an infection. So on thursday, friday, and monday and i had to go in for her to treat the infection. Now basically everything is ok, the infection i think is gone but now i just have a huge hole in my mouth. Hopefully it will heal soon. Cameron what do you think, am i ok?
Well this last week we had zone conference and is was great!!! I learned a lot in which i can do to be a better missionary, now i just need to apply it my work. President and Sister Trejo were here and it was ofcourse great to see them. They have just become like our parents on the mission. Its really cool to see how we develop a family like bond with them and with the other missionaries. In our mission we are just a big family. Because our mission is so big and president is usually far away in a different city, we have to be like a family in our own cities so we can help each other and get the work done. I have heard from a lot of other missions that a lot of time the missionaries dont get along very well, but here it is a totally different story.
So on saturday Natasha will be baptized. We will be continuing to work with her this week to be ready for for great day. There is nothing better then to see someone accept Christ and his teaching and enter the waters of baptism in his true church. I will tell you all about her baptism next week.
So something interesting happened this last week with all the senior couple in our mission. So there was a senior couple conference at lake baikal this last week. So all the husbands and wifes who are serving in our mission and also president and sister trejo. Well on like the second day of there conference they all get very sick. Some very sick and others just alittle. But every single on of them got it a little. At first they couldnt figure out why they got sick, but just a couple days ago they found out it was food poisoning. At one point they were told it was because of the wind coming up fromMongolia haha but anyway some of them were really think and didnt eat for 4 days and just stayed in bed. We were all praying for them because the work they do for us is so important. They all for the most part are almost all recovered. The was one bad chicken dinner :)
A group a ladies from the branch here just got back from the temple for the first time. It is amazing to see people who just with in the last few years were baptized make it to the temple. The are great women and are striving to follow chirst and stay active members. What a great blessing for them to go to the temple and preform endowments for themselves and then for members of their families so have died. They are great missionaries. The temple is such an important part of the plan of salvation and its so great to know we can help others receive these saving ordinances. I hope you all are attending the temple regularly, if not start now!
They weather here is beautiful. Really hot most day lately, which is a suprise because i am in siberia. I am getting a pretty good farmers tan, the first one i think i have ever day, but not as bad as that time a had the sock tan from working at the golf course :) but also i have soooo many mosquito bite, they love me and bite me so much. My companion has like none. I was told that mosquitoes like A+ blood the most, which is what i have. Its the most disairable to them. So if thats true it makes sense. My companion and I refer to my blood and Belle blood, for those twilight fans you will understand!!! haha
Well tomorrow is my year mark! WOW!!!! One year ago I entered the MTC. Can you believe that? I cant. I only have 6 month, lets just not think about it. I dont want my mission to end, there is so much more to do.
I love you all so much!!!!! Have a great week!!!!
Love always from your missionary in Russia,
Sister Mindy Gneiting

Wow really these weeks just fly by so fast!!!
Well i hope you all had a great 4th of July weekend. Mine was great too, we went to the parade, went swimming, had a bonfire, and then did fireworks!!!!!! HAHA JUST KIDDING!! Of course not, anyway I am in Russia so there was no celebration, but i still thought about it and how thankful I am for America and to be a citizen. Well every night our zone leaders call us to see if we are home safe and how our day went. So they called on the night of the 4th and when we answered they had the other elders on a different phone and then they started playing the song that goes "this land is your land this land is my land from california...." So we all listened together and we all sand along. My companion is the only one in our zone who is not american, so she didnt really care that much haha, but the rest of us very much enjoyed it!!! It is weird being soooo far away from america on the 4th of July, but i can say that even all the way in the middle of Siberian Russia the 4th of July was celebrated!!!! YAY I LOVE AMERICA!!!!!!!
So actually this 4th of July weekend wasnt the best. I had a horrible tooth ache. I noticed on saturday night that my tooth kind of hurt when i ate and then I woke up on Sunday and it hurt a lot worse. As sunday went on it kept getting worse and worse and worse. If anything would just barely touch that tooth it would just explode in pain. So the pain was really bad at church but the branch president's wife and daughter, so have become like my russian family took good care of me and gave me some medicine. So I took the medicine and then we went off to a meeting on the other side of the town and soon i felt really bad. I has really weak and dizzy and couldnt talk cuz my mouth hurt so much. So after the meeting we called a taxi and just went home and i went to bed. That night I couldn't sleep very much because it hurt so bad. Then the next morning my mouth was swollen and numb, which took some of the pain away. The branch president and his family told us of a good dentist, so on monday we went. Well the sad part is that they said they couldn't do anything about it and had to pull it :) So now i am missing a part of me and have a big hole in my mouth, yeah i kind of feel like less of a person haha but the most important thing is that the pain is gone. SO what had happened is that i had a root canalin this tooth a few years ago and the dentist here said that whoever did the root canal broke part of my tooth and then it caused a infection. Im not sure if i was in american if anything could have been done to fix it, but here i guess not. So when i get back to america i guess i will get a fake tooth. So thats i guess how i celebrated the 4th :)
Well this transfer is just moving along. This week we have Zone Conference again, which i am always excited about. I always learn so much from my mission president and his wife. They are both amazing and help us so much!!! Well Natasha is progressing great, she will be baptized on the 17th of this month. We are very excited and happy for her. She has excepted the gospel so well and is continuing to learn more and more. Marina who was baptized a month or so ago is leaving this week to go back home to Ukraine. We are sad that she is leaving. We have really been teaching her about how she can continue to strengthen her testimony when is in Ukraine and how she can be a member missionary. We will miss her but she is already so strong in the gospel and is always finding ways to learn more.
Well i am really sorry this email is short. I will try for a better one next week! I love you all so much though, so dont forget it. Have fantastic week!!!!!!!
Sister Mindy Gneiting

Monday, July 5, 2010


(Two new emails - read them both)

Happy 4th of July week!!!!!
I hope you all have a great 4th of july because its my favorite holiday and I am going to miss it. I'm in Russia, so for sure there wont be a celebration here haha So I will wait till next year.
Well I am sorry this probably wont be a very long email. Soon we have to go meet with our zone for an activity we are doing today. But really nothing too exciting or new has happened this week ;)))
So our investigator Natasha who has a baptismal date set for July is going as great as ever. She is continuing to progress great and is getting ready for her baptism. She loves coming to church, reading the Book of Mormon and learning more about the Church. She is so willing to follow our savior and his commandments. We asked her if she had prayed and asked God if this church was true and she told us she did and that she received an answer that it is the true church. It has been so great to see her come unto christ and accept his gospel. Another investigator Ira is also progressing. She has no background really at all of religion, so everything we teach is very new to her. We have a lot more to teach her, but she is very interested. We are working with her on prayer right now and that God really will answer our prayer. Isnt it amazing that God has blessed us with the gift of prayer. Prayer works, it truly does. God listens and he hears us and he will always answer our prayer, but sometimes we forget to listen or watch for the answers. My testimony of prayer has grown alot lately, even in the last day. I have never prayed so hard before and its not for myself, its for others. There are people here that i communicate with everyday that I know need god's help, his love, his comfort, and his protection. I see these people and wish so much to help them, but with some of their problems there is NOTHING i can do to help them and the only thing that comes to my head is PRAYER!!! Pray for them! God knows how to help them and he may be the only one that can help them. Yesterday I saw how through our humble and sincere prayer God will help those in need. Yesterday someone we are working with here very much needed Gods help and after MUCH prayer I saw his love and help extended to this person. Prayer works and we need to have faith in our prayers and remember that they truelly are conversations with our loving Heavenly Father. I encourage you all to pray for others, recognize the needs of others and keep them in your prayers. This is a service we can do for all the children of God.
So what else is new... Well we do have a new investigator that i m excited to start working with. The elders have been teaching a young girl Yana, but they think it will be better if we take over teaching her. She is a great girl and is very interested. We're excited to start working with her.
This saturday we are having an activity with the branch and then anyone else we invite. It is a soccer game which is girls against boys!!!!!!!! Our Branch President is a professional soccer player but he will be on the girls team :))))))) it should be really fun!
So mom to answer your questions, yes I know Elders Drasso and Eborn. I only know them from the visa trip though. They both seem like great missionaries. I will probably serve with them someday. Yeah and Elder Drasso is from the Newport area. Small world!! Yeah while we were in Finland there was only 3 hours of darkness. There is not much darkness here either. We go to sleep at 10:30 to light and wake up at 6:30 to light too. I am not sure what time it gets dark though. Its interesting though.
Well i love you all so much. Thanks for all your love and support. Until next week :)
love always,
Sister Mindy Gneiting


Hello My Everyone!!!!!
So I am sitting in a internet cafe in the middle of Siberia sweating...... who would have thought that was possible. Any hoo the weather is beautiful right now. The last week has been VERY hot. It has been around 38 C which is 100.4 F WOWEEEEE!!!!! SO HOT!!!! But you know me, I love hot weather, so even though i sweat its ok with me. I think it is better then -40 F. Which it got that cold in the winter.
Well lets see what interesting things have happened this last week. Well last week one night i was doing the dishes and actually talking to someone on the phone when all of a sudden the knob on the faucet broke off and water went spraying everywhere, I started screaming like, " AHHHHHHHHH OH MY GOODNESS!!!!!!!!!" I was talking to the branch presidents daughter and she was like "Is everything Ok!!!" Anyway I hung up the phone and yelled for my companion and then she came in and saw the water spraying everywhere in the kitchen and then TOGETHER we scream "AHHHHHHHHH OH MY GOODNESS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!" So my comp hurried and put a towel over the gayzer of water (which was really hot) as i got under the sink and tried to figure out how to turn off the water. Her hand was burning up as i was messing around with the knob. Well anyway I shut it off and then we called our landlord to come look at it. Well the next 3 days we spent a lot of time at home as he attempted to fix it. One day we came home and found a note on the front door from our neighbor directly below us saying that we NEEDED to talk and then we opened the door and found a huge puddle of water on the kitchen floor. Well in the end everything was fixed, but it was an interesting few days!
Well great news.... our investigator Natasha has a baptismal date for the 17th of July. She is a great girl and we are looking forward to her baptism. We still have a lot to teach her about. She is very excepting of what we teach her and really loves the church and she believes it is true. Also Marina who was baptized a few weeks ago is doing great. She just continues to amaze me at how strong she already is in the gospel. She teaches me more than i think i teach her. She will be moving back to Ukraine soon and the church is not in her city, but she will continue to read the Book of Mormon and keep contact with the church and her uncle who is a member. She will be a great member missionary for her family and friends.
Yes mom Diana danced at the graduation at her university, but it wasnt her graduation. She graduates next year. She dances very well and did a great job at the graduation!!! She is actually my companion right now. My companion is really sick and couldnt leave the house today, but she insisted that i still have a PDay. So we arranged to be on splits today. I hope she gets feeling better soon. Its always horrible to be sick and to try to continue doing missionary work.
So a couple days ago I read a talk by Elder Uchtdorf from the last young womens conference. It was such a great talk. He talked about fairy tales. He related how we start our own live as "once upon a time" and how it is up to us to find our "happy ever after." He talked about how through the gospel and the atonement we can have a happy ever after. This concept is completely right and one that we need to think about always. We are here is this life writing our own fairytale and in the end if we live correcting we can live with God again which will be our "happy ever after." The important part it that we spend everyday living the gospel and strengthening our testimonies by reading the scriptures, praying, and living by the commandments. As we do this we get closer to that happy ever after. If you havent already heard this talk you should read it, its very good.
Well my time is over :( I love you all soooooo much!!!! Have a great great great great week!!!
Love always,
Sister Mindy Gneiting