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First member in Slovenia wasn't looking for truth

Albin Lotric was not looking for religion when a young man dressed in a suit holding a book in his hand stopped him on the street. In his heart, he didn't feel that his religion was true but, then, he wasn't interested in learning the truth.

Albin politely gave his address, then hoped that nothing would come of it.

At the time, Albin was living in Norway, a foreign country to him where he didn't understand the language. He was born in 1963 and raised in a small village in the Julian Alps in Slovenia, then part of the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia.

His parents worked in a factory and when he became of age he worked in the same factory. He later served in the Yugoslavian army and lived as many other young men his age, wandering from place to place and drinking alcohol.

After his military requirement, he began to feel restless and dissatisfied. He left the factory for the university where he studied computers. Soon he accepted an opportunity to study for three months at a company in Stavanger, Norway, starting June 1989.

Shortly after starting this internship he met the missionaries in Norway. They gave him an English-version Book of Mormon, then later a Croatian copy, since a Slovenian edition did not exist at the time.

The members were kind, the conversation with the missionaries caused him to think about religion, and he found parts of the Book of Mormon interesting.

"Then, one day," he said, "I was reading the words of Moroni, the answer came — unexpected, unannounced. I felt the Holy Ghost giving me indescribable feelings, and my mind was enlightened."

He was baptized on his 26th birthday, on Aug. 19, 1989.

Returning home he learned that the Church had not been established in Slovenia, requiring him to travel an hour to the nearest branch in Klagenfurt, Austria.

He shared the gospel with his new girlfriend, Boza. "It took me almost six months to get my testimony," she said, describing how the answer came one Sunday night as she prayed in a grove of trees. He baptized her in March 1990.

When missionaries arrived in Slovenia a few months later in December, membership began to grow. A year later, on Dec. 22, 1991, the Ljubljana branch was organized with Albin Lotric as president. In July 1992, the couple was sealed in the Frankfurt Germany Temple.

"The Lord is blessing us abundantly," Brother Lotric said.

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