Beautiful Russia!

Beautiful Russia!

Our great friend, Roma made dinner for us!

Our great friend, Roma made dinner for us!

Elder Rasmussen is very excited to see real food!

Elder Rasmussen is very excited to see real food!

Companion and friend, Elder Jake Rasmussen

Companion and friend, Elder Jake Rasmussen

Trifecta's Last Time In Estonia

Trifecta's Last Time In Estonia

With my wonderful friend, Faik.

With my wonderful friend, Faik.

Sunrise, at One P.M.

Sunrise, at One P.M.

Petrozadovsk District

Petrozadovsk District

Lake at Petrozavodsk

Lake at Petrozavodsk

North Zone Conference Nov. 2011

North Zone Conference Nov. 2011

Thanksgiving Dinner 2011

Thanksgiving Dinner 2011

First Zone Conference with President Clark

First Zone Conference with President Clark

Neva River Fall 2011

Neva River Fall 2011

Visa trip, Oct 1st 2011

Visa trip, Oct 1st 2011

Oh my aching jaw...

Oh my aching jaw...

Hermitage Museum on P-day!

Hermitage Museum on P-day!

Me, Svetlana and Elder Loskutov

Me, Svetlana and Elder Loskutov

Birthday lunch with Kostya

Birthday lunch with Kostya

My friend, Grisha

My friend, Grisha

Service for Babushka

Service for Babushka

MTC Missionaries in Estonia

MTC Missionaries in Estonia

Waiting in Estonia...

Waiting in Estonia...

Visit from Elder Russell M. Nelson

Visit from Elder Russell M. Nelson

Elders Larsen and Anthony

Elders Larsen and Anthony

Our MTC teacher surprise visit!

Our MTC teacher surprise visit!

Podvodov family gave powerful talks!

Podvodov family gave powerful talks!
Pskov, Russia Branch

Vyborg Castle

Vyborg Castle

St Olaf's Castle Where We Do Service Work

St Olaf's Castle Where We Do Service Work

Beautiful Vyborg on the Sea of Finland

Beautiful Vyborg on the Sea of Finland

Vyborg

Vyborg

Misty day in Kaliningrad

Misty day in Kaliningrad

Kaliningrad District May 2010

Kaliningrad District May 2010

Russian MTC Group

Russian MTC Group

Russian MTC Zone at Provo Temple

Russian MTC Zone at Provo Temple

02 September 2010

Off to Testify!

Hello! I'm still serving in Vyborg, but I have a new companion... First Russian companion!!! It's not Elder Leue... We do have an Elder with that name though... Either President thinks that I speak well enough to have a Russian companion, or he thinks that I need a Russian companion to teach me... Ha ha. Joking! Either way this transfer I think will help my Russian a lot. His name is Elder Domansky. He has been the Branch President in a city outside of St. Petersburg for the last 8 months called Sestroretsk, so he is excited to come to Vyborg. Elder Haggard is going to be Branch President there now. Cool! Not a lot of changes this transfer happened, though. Most companionships stayed the same. I got letters!!!! Yay! That is one reason why I love transfers!!! Two from Mom, one from dad, two from Liz, one from Michelle, one from Kels, one from Keri, and one from Nate Reidhead... I felt like a kid a Christmas! ha ha. Sister Luna says hi, Mom... ha ha. As of right now I am in Sestroretsk because Elder Domansky needs to train Elder Haggard as Branch President. We will return to Vyborg sometime by the end of the week. It's a cool place. Lot smaller than St. Petersburg, but bigger than Vyborg. I'll be with Elder Anthony while Elder Haggard is being trained by Elder Domansky. :) Elder Anthony is a cool guy! So I don't know why, but I have lost about 12 lbs this last transfer... My body can't decide if it wants to gain or loose weight and bounces all over the place... But what else is new, right? ha ha. We had a meeting with a guy who is Lutheran, but is very interested in genealogy work and came to the church for English club and the genealogy library. We met with the ward genealogy specialist, and the meeting went really well. We hope his interest in the church will spark as we meet with him. Other than that, not a lot of investigators are will meet with us. They set up an appointment and won't show or won't be home... Sunday was a very cool and history day here in Russia. The Kiev temple was dedicated and now the first temple exists in the former Soviet Union!!! I got to experience the Hosanna Shout and dedication of the temple in Russian, which was a very cool experience!! Felt the spirit so strongly! I did get to try on Finnish armour at the castle during our service work! Today Elder Domansky wanted to print off some pictures, so if I can print some pictures of I will send some this week. Sorry I haven't sent home letters in a while. Haven't had a lot of time lately. We've been meeting with lots of members who are trying to help us with missionary work, and teaching them how they can invite their friends and such. Sounds like things are about the same at home. Any other news from Cody other than that email you showed me? I want to see some pictures of Cody from while he is on his mission! I haven't seen any yet. Do you have any on the computer that you could send me? Thank you very much for the pictures of Kallie, Millie, and us at Provo Canyon. Good memories. Made me smile. So is everyone at school now since Amanda and her mom stayed over? I still think it is funny you are meeting so many moms from the mission. Ha ha. I love this Gospel! I'm very happy to be here serving among the Russian people. Lately I've just felt a sense of peace and joy when I read the scriptures, testify to people, read up lifting books, etc. It's amazing how much JOY can come into your heart when you let Christ in! I really love the books "Jesus the Christ" and "Our Search for Happiness." I wish I had read them before my mission. There is a story in Our Search for Happiness about Elder Ballard's grandfather and his testimony about Jesus Christ. If you haven't read it, I would advise you to do so... Love you all!! Thank you, everyone, for being a great support to me during my life so I could come and serve on a mission. Mom and Dad, thank you for raising me in the Gospel! Miss you alot and can't wait to see all of you back home again... But this is where I'm meant to be, and I'm loving it here too. Russia is starting to feel like a second home. Everywhere feels like home when you are doing the work of the Savior! Sometimes you feel like your surrounded by loved ones when you don't know anyone around you... I don't know how to describe what I'm trying to say... I hope you all get the picture. Gotta go. Thanks again! :) Love, Blake

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