Hugs for “Bruder” Helmut Winterstein


IHACD 3 stories


Here is my report from the years 1971 / 1972:I was a soldier at that time, and one of my comrades and his wife were my friends. One day he told me, that he was in contact with the Mormon missionaries. The chapel in Dusseldorf/Germany was right between our homes and really close. I answered him not to waste his time on that kind of nonsense. But he kept me informed about his progress in the teachings. And then one day he came up with the “sensation.””Boy, I did it, I was baptized last weekend!”My response was clear, “Man, are you mad? How could you do such a thing?”

And then I started to save his soul. I not only discussed with him, I just fought and nailed him with my questions and opinions to the wall. It came to the point, that he said, “You know, I am a new convert myself, so I cannot answer all your questions, but I make an appointment with two people who really can answer.””Ok,” I said, “So I will save their souls together with yours.”And then in january 1972 I met the missionaries for the first time. And I was surprised: Really nice people my own age, and they had answers indeed! Even for questions, I had not yet asked! I was impressed. but then the army sent me to an training course in another town and I lost contact for several months. After my return my friend connected us again and I started being taught by the elders regularly.

Following their counsel I started praying and asked my Heavenly Father, if this church was right. Also I started to attend the meetings and I always felt welcome and kind of home in the ward. I asked on and on until i came to the ward one Sunday and the feeling was totally different. It felt strange and cold. Oops, I thought. Now the scripture the elders told me, becomes true, but the other way. If it is wrong, you shall have a stupor of thought. At that time I didn’t see the paradox in that. The next Sunday I felt the same strange way and thought for myself: Ok, one more chance next Sunday and then I am through with this.

When I entered the ward on the following Sunday it was completely strong: As I felt before, it was like coming home, a very familiar and warm feeling. Then I understood, that I had my answer for a long time while I still prayed. I was raised as a Lutheran Protestant and I believed in this faith, but I had did not know, how a burning heart felt. I had never before felt like that and then I immediately decided to be baptized myself. So I went in to the water at Dec 2, 1972, about one year after my friend.

Since that time I had a lot of different experiences during 41 years. But nothing happened, which told me something different. I had much confirmation for my decision but nothing contrary. I cannot say, how grateful I am for this gift in my life. During my first year I met the most beautiful and charming young lady and fell in love with her. Now we are married for 40 years and it is clear to me: the gospel and the girl were my best decisions. It proved during more than 40 years, so I think this is a valid statement. I praise the Lord for his love and his grace and I testify, that he lives and watches for us – his beloved children. And he helps us in everything that is possible for him without touching our free agency.

Helmut Winterstein

Helmut Winterstein


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  1. It was an honor to accompany you on your spiritual journey. I am glad that you came back the third time to the ward. A big hug to you, my friend.

    • I thank you you for not being “saved” by my ideas, but following your discussions to teach me, what really matters. As I mentioned, time proved, you were right.

  2. Bro. Winterstein,

    I served in Fulda when you were the branch president there. You were kind to me and had us over for meals. I’ve always appreciated your kindness.

    There was a brother Cieslak in the branch at that time. An older man who had lost his hand in the war.

    Did he ever make it to the temple?

    Bruce McAllister

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