elder caleb greaves

Holding to the Iron Rod in Germany


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Hey guys!

Tell me when my Christmas package arrives! I also just sent the Pyramide [wooden nativity]. So that should come soon.

[Family played “Where in the World is Caleb Sandiego” since we had no idea where Elder Greaves was for a week.  Dad chose Hanover, Mom chose Hamburg, Sister chose Madgeburg, and Brother chose Salzwedel.  And the winner was????]

Well, to cut it short, you were all wrong. 🙂

I went to Jena.

Salzwedel, though, was in my first area in Lauenburg – it’s pretty small. It was 2 1/2 hours away from our church! (That area was huge). That’s where I assumed I’d be going, because that was where Elder Anderson just came from.

My companion’s name is Elder Weber. He is super awesome! We are in the same MTC group. Actually, I’m the 4th missionary in a row to serve here from our MTC group. Elder Weber and I, Elder Anderson, and Elder Peterson before that. Elder Weber wants to study computer science. It is kind of spooky how similar to Chuck he is (from the TV show).

Jena is absolutely gorgeous. By far the prettiest town I’ve served in. The scary thing is, there is a good chance this is my last city. It has about 100,000 people, which in terms of missionary work is medium-small, but on the Elder Greaves scale is huge.

About 60,000 of those are college students, which means it’s a lot of fun. Jena has an extremely high level research center for light, so most people we meet are either getting their Ph.D’s in optics or photonics. This one guy in our branch named SR is studying optics, and wants to develop virtual and augmented reality stuff.

HOW COOL IS THAT?

I’ll put a cool experience that happened this week through google translate.

In Neumünster , we were completely packed with appointments. We have R met. Last week I wrote about R also. A brief summary: We did find the whole day . Did not do anything. All people were especially grumpy , so we were even. But we have given a Book of Mormon to Rudy, written with our number in it. He called us and said that he has noticed how happy we were, and he knew that this was so, because we were both Christians. He has asked us to teach him how to become a Christian, because he wanted to be as happy as we are. We talked about prayer. He meant that he could not pray , but asked us to say a. We made it , and he wept. He said that he already so find it and he was praying alone.

Also, the day before we were leaving, we got to finally put O on baptismal date. She was really excited, and as long as things go according to plan, I’ll be skyping her baptism on January 29th! She is so amazing. It was definitely a bummer to have to go after that. But she is super prepared, and she will make it.

I hope you guys have a great week!

Love you!

Elder Greaves

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NO time!

Hey guys! I’ll do my best to write as much as I can, but I really have almost no time for emails today. We have people to say goodbye too, and I’ll probably be up til the wee hours cleaning and packing.

Oh. So I got transferred.

I’m going to Neumünster, which is a somewhat small City (but still my biggest!) in the north, kind of near Denmark!

Look for the yellow marker!

Look for the yellow marker!

I also got called to be a district leader, which is causing me unneeded stress, honestly.  But I’m excited. My new companion’s name is Elder Weaver, and all I know about him is that he’s tall. So that’s good!

I’m feeling fine now, but I was really sick this weekend.

Germans are strangely into eating raw meat on sandwiches.

I had raw salmon the other day (smoked) and it was really good, but on Saturday I ate what was essentially raw bacon and yes, it absolutely killed me. It kind of felt like some little bacon wrestlers were using my intestines as the ropes around their WWE wresting ring, and they were definitely throwing down what I will – in polite society – describe as some wicked wrestling moves.

bacon wrestling

We kicked off the Family history class on Sunday with the members, leaving them all thoroughly confused, which was basically as expected, since middle-aged Germans are so completely inept with computers its embarrassing. We had a woman in her 40’s ask us how to turn off her computer, so that should be a fun little playhouse for Elder Allen in the future! But our plan was just to introduce the idea so they have time to invite their friends over the next 2 weeks to the first class. I think it will go really well. The members are excited. I think I’kll do the same thing in Neumünster when the time is right.

All in all, I’ve really, really sad to leave Frankfurt Oder. It’s the right time, but it hurts, too. Every transfer hurts, but this town is very special to me. I think I’ve learned the most here of any city on my mission. I’ve learned charity, and I’ve come to really love both the members and investigators in a very special way that I think only missionaries and parents can understand, in that this person has become someone you pray for constantly and think about daily and desire more than anything to help. I’m sure it’s more extreme for parents, but it’s an interesting dynamic with complete strangers who are older and more experienced than you are.

I’ve learned to love the scriptures even more, and I’ve come to really appreciate them as the Word of God. I’ve been delighted and astounded to see just how much you can get out of every verse. It is so deeply layered and meaningful, and so completely beyond the capability of any human to reproduce. It’s almost like you can feel the imperfect human language and understanding straining and stretching under the rich immensity of meaning. It really can only be conveyed through the Holy Ghost.

And I’ve come to be extremely comfortable talking to people and being around them.

I’m excited to see what type of missionary I will be in Neumünster – I feel like every area I become a different one with new strengths and weaknesses!

I love you guys! Have a great week!

Elder Greaves

New Address is: (also updated on the contact me page)

Elder Caleb Greaves
Geibelstrasse 21
24536 Neumünster
GERMANY