We are thinking that amongst the differences, there are things that are the same. Underneath it all, people are the same. As we attend Church week to week, the members are becoming more familiar with us and are very friendly There are certain babushka's (older ladies) who I exchange hugs with and the young women in their twenties also are very friendly. Dave carried on a simple conversation with one of the members today. I felt warm and welcomed by our bishop who asked how I was feeling (since I had been sick last week). He speaks very good English.
I had the opportunity of visiting with Alexsey, who we met last week at English Club. He teaches English in Moscow and showed us his certificate today that he received with a college here that is associated with Cambridge University. He is a delightful man in his 30's or 40's who loves his family and is now investigating the Church. He came to the Investigator's Class today after Sacrament meeting.
There is one little guy named Nikita who is 6 years old who has really taken a shine to Dave. He likes to rub Dave's head and enjoys hug. This sweet boy is the age of one of our grandsons. The little ones are precious and don't seem to let the language barrier affect them too much.
A couple new to the mission shared a sweet experience that they had on the metro a couple of weeks ago. They noticed a young man looking curiously at their name tags and when a seat became available next to Elder and Sister J, he came and sat down next to them. He said in halting English, "I see that you wear Jesus Christ next to your heart." He was hoping to learn more and they just happened to have some Russian Church literature which he accepted happily.
We are learning that there are people who are looking for light. The days of communist rule and aethism are in the past and many want something more. We hope next time we can be prepared with something we can share with them to read despite the language barrier. Of course, our young missionaries speak Russian and can communicate better then we can. We need to try!