Thursday, March 22, 2012

First Proselyting LDS Missionaries Assigned to Bosnia and Herzegovina

Last week, missionaries report that six young missionaries were permanently assigned to Bosnia and Herzegovina for the first time.  Four missionaries (two elders and two sisters) were assigned to the Sarajevo Branch and two missionaries were assigned to the Banja Luka Group.  Several Bosnians have already joined the Church through the efforts of the handful of members in the country and senior missionary couples within the past year.  The Adriatic North Mission services Bosnia and Herzegovina.

Missionaries also report that plans are underway to assign the first proselyting missionaries to Macedonia and Montenegro within the next couple months.  The Adriatic South Mission services these two countries.


Connor Carpenter said...

Such great news!
Hey Matt, if you are getting this information from missionary blogs, I'd like to follow them too. If so, could you post the link? Thanks!

Matt said...

Here is a great blog on the Church in Bosnia and Herzegovina.

dastew said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
dastew said...

How is the Church negotiating proselyting to Bosnian-Muslims (or Bosniaks if you prefer)? This has always been a touchy area in Europe. I was in a mission that had a "if they'll listen to you, then teach them" policy. But I know some missions were much more restrictive. Have we put any limitations in Bosnia? Are we only reaching out to the Christian population?

Scott said...

I've just been called to the Adriatic South! So excited to possibly be one of the pioneer missionaries is montenegro or kosovo

Lisa C said...

My son Conrad will be entering the MTC for the Adriatic South Mission on the 18th of April.

John Pack Lambert said...

Bosniaks are not exactly the same as most Muslims in Europe. The big concern with many Muslims is negative reprecussions to their relatives back home and the fact that many of them are only temporarily in their current countries and likely to return to countries where the Church has no organized presence, and where reaching out to former Muslims would endanger the lives of any church members there.

On the other hand Bosnian "Muslims" are more ethnic than religious in nature. They are indigenous to the area and so if the Church can have a presence there, then converting them there will work.

It is interesting to note that the story of the man who would suffer for joining the LDS Church that Elder Oaks told in conference was about a Pakistani man who may have even been a Muslim before he joined the Church, that second detail I am not sure on though.

holly said...

I am a member of the church. I descent from pioneer ancestry. That, I am proud of.
I am also married to a Bosnian Muslim ( Bosniak).
Please remember that while Bosniaks are very protective of their Muslim heritage, most have actually not practiced- ever. In fact, most of Bosnia is agnostic givent their terrible war.
While under Marshall Tito's regime, he ran a very unique form of a Socialist regime. He was successful in keeping what was then Yugoslavia out of the Cold War between the U.S and the Soviet Union.
Remember, that during Tito's regime, the people of Yugolavia were not prohibited from attending any kind of church service, but they were not encouraged as "religion was the opiate of the masses" sort of thinking.
My husband is from Banja Luka, a predominantly Serbian city. He grew up not even knowing about his Muslim heritage. He had no idea why tanks were all of a sudden invading his city. All of a sudden his mates that he had been playing soccer with were prohibited from playing with the "Muslim" kid.
Fortunately, my husband got out of the former Yugoslavia as early as 1992. He has some trauma over the situation, but certainly like those not allowed out of the country to find safety of any kind. Remember, for three long years the good people of Sarajevo lived under attack without much intervention from any world organization.
I do not believe at all that the overall sentiment of Bosnia is at all religious. Like most European countries, the tend to be agnostic.
Of course I am so glad to see missionary efforts in Bosnia-Herzogovinia. I sincerely hope that our missionaries are taught that the pride and hatefulness found in this region is extremely complicated. It is my hope that they use the spirit alone in finding those who are ready for the gospel.
These people were once countrymen. They once fought shoulder to shoulder in defeating German troops during attacks back in World War 2.
I have been studying this region and it's rich history for many years. I still cannot say I have a grasp on exactly what and who the ethnic groups belong to exactly. My husband can tell simply by appearance what ethnic group a Bosnian belongs to.
Thsi work is very important to me, however. It is my sincere belief that I met my husband as a means to bring the spirit of Christ to Bosnia.
My mother in law is someone who exhudes the love of Christ without even knowing it. She is an example that people truly are born with the spirit of Christ.
She harbors no hatred towards anyone, even though a lesser person would, most understandably even.
I am so glad we have missionary work in Bosnia- Herzogovina. As far as understanding its' pollitics, the ethnicicities, I really don't think that will be time well spent as scholars have been trying to get to the bottom of their issues for centuries.
However, I do think many people are ready for the gospel. Please, don't worry about the ethnicities. Even though there was a war fough over such issues, most people in Bosnia know better and really are trying to get past the atrocities that happened not so long ago.

holly said...

Like Jack said... exactly, Jack!

ngearwear said...

My son is one of those first elders in Sarajevo and he loves it. He says the people are so warm and kind and he is thrilled and overwhelmed with the possibilites that are there. I am sure with the Lord's help and the spirit guiding them, they will find those searching for the gospel. The rest of our family pray daily for him and all the people of Bosnia to feel the peace and joy that only the Savior can provide.

Carolina Trumbo said...

My daughter is also one of the sisters serving in Sarajevo. She loves her mission and she loves the people.They have a hand full of investigators and, even though they are very set in their traditions, they are very polite and respectful towards them.

nosbigelad said...

My son was recently transferred to Bosnia. He has spent the previous 9 months in Belgrade, Serbia. He is in Banja Luka now. He loves the people. He says they are very friendly and polite. He looks forward to helping those that are ready find the peace that only can come through the Savior.

John said...

Where can we find out about where meetings take place in Sarajevo? I can't find anything on the site (then again, I can never find anything on there and typically use Google to search the site). Any help is appreciated. Thank you!

Matt said...

The Church recently removed information regarding its two branches in Bosnia and Herzegovina on the meetinghouse locator. Units in this country are now categorized as "sensitive." I guess the Church may of had some legal issue with making this information online considering the Church does not appear to have any time of government recognition yet. Contact the Adriatic North Mission for info at 385 14-577-783.