Thursday, February 13, 2014

January 27, 2014

Dear Fam,

This week was a pretty good one.  Not too cold if I remember right, but just decently cold hahaha (like average around -20 celsius).  I don't think the cold will bother me too much after this winter up here!  But first off I forgot to mention last week that we had a zone training (around 2 weeks ago now) and President Newell interviewed me then and thanked me for the card that you guys sent him and that he really enjoyed it.  Also he told me that Elder Clawson will be training next transfer and he felt that he should stay here so I will be transferring again! And if all goes as planned I will be going to an area in northern Stockholm called Täby.  It is where the mission office is and they want missionaries there to serve it full time because the office elders are busy doing stuff for the mission a lot so don't get normal proselyting time, so he said that I will be opening up the area for full time missionary work.  This ward is where President and Sister Newell go to and also it apparently is a wealthier area.  But all this is pending on if they can find an apartment which is hard in Stockholm, so we will see if I go there or not.  Transfer calls are this Saturday and then next Wednesday would be when I leave dear Boden.  

But I thought that I could tell some cool stories that I have noticed around me.  The first was when I went to Umeå for splits.  We stopped in this one building to do some tracting and visit some potential investigators (people they had met previously that said they might be interested in learning more) they had met and then I saw on the list of people living in that complex a guy who's name seemed familar, E.  Well when I came back up to Boden I was just looking through the phone for a number and saw a contact named E who was an old investigator in Luleå a few years ago.  I thought it was a neat little coincidence that we just happened to go into his building in Umeå and that I recognized his name.  But we gave his contact information to the Umeå elders and they went and talked to him and he didn't seem amazingly prepared but we will see in the future.  

Also another little coincidence I had was also while I was in Umeå.  We went and tried to teach this one African guy named A.  He lived in a weird student housing thing so there were doorbells to every room and he wasn't answering his so the elder I was with rang every single doorbell to try to see if any of them in there knew him and the last bell a girl answered and said I don't know who he is but I will go check the kitchen to see if anyone else does.  Well he was there in the kitchen and we taught him the first lesson and it went well and I didn't really think much more of it.  However the next time the Umeå elders went and taught him a girl came in and said oh I really like the mormon religion and was going to join but I still drink hot drinks so I can't.  And they asked what drinks she drinks and she said hot chocolate!  They said that was perfectly fine and she wanted to come to church and they have been teaching her and yesterday was her first time at church and after church next Sunday she is going to be baptized!  Also they were inviting A to come to church but he was saying that he couldn't because he worked until 4 AM and then had to work again on Sunday at 4 PM so he needed to sleep.  But when he said that the girl said well I work the same shift but I'll come!  It's church!  It was crazy how if we would have just given up ringing the doorbells that one day to find A this girl would have never been found!  It is neat to see the different ways the Spirit guides us.

Another one was this week we were looking out in this one town for an old investigator who seemed very positive but just disappeared off the map.  Our GPS in our car couldn't find the street name so we were just going to start looking on street signs.  We looked at one and it wasn't it and then drove a little more, in no pattern or anything just completely random and we stopped to look at another one in a different part of the town and boom that was the street.  We went and visited his house and it was his parents home and they said that he lives in Uppsala now.  So we gave the Uppsala elders his information and hopefully something happens with him because it was crazy that this random street we decided to check was the right one!

And one more fun little story.  We had a good day all set up and then it basically all fell apart and the last thing we did was go and look for an old investigator from 2010.  Turns out it was like immigrant housing or something and the first few doors we asked had no idea who we were looking for and then a really nice guy from Georgia (the country) who spoke only Russian, a tiny bit of Swedish, and read Arabic let us in as we tried to explain who we were looking for, and then that we were missionaries.  We ended up running to our car and getting a Ukrainian Book of Mormon and an Arabic one for him to read and he tried to give us the Quoran but we told him that we couldn't read it.  But we were all pumped because he was so nice, he is Muslim but really nice and there is a huge language barrier.  Anyway right after that we decided to just knock the next door just to ask if they knew this old investigator and it turns out it was an African family from Eritrea and Sudan and only one knew Swedish so he translated for the others.  They said that the two girls don't know anything about Christianity but need to learn more so they let us in and we taught the Restoration and wanted to come to church and have copies of the Book of Mormon in Amharic so they can read.  It was just cool to see how we were led to them even though it totally didn't feel like it!  
So those are my cool little coincidences that I have noticed lately, which I am sure aren't really coincidences and amazing things are going to come from them.  But the week was a pretty good one.  One funny thing that happened was that we went and had the car inspected for its normal yearly inspection (3 days ago) and then today as we were driving to Luleå to email and give the sisters the car for the next few days a light came on and the car started to make a horrible noise.  We slowed down and putted our way off the highway to a gas station and after a lot of phone calls and waiting we got it towed to the dealership to be fixed.  So that kinda threw off our day today and will probably throw off our week but we will see.  We've been joking that the dealership didn't do anything to the car actually or that they like ruined it or something because it was fine before it went in! hahaha

It is so great to hear from you guys though.  It sounds like it was a pretty good week.  And I am really happy that you guys found a renter and buyer for the house!  I actually felt that I should pray for that this week and also that Dad would not be so stressed at work and that things would work out.  I guess they were good things to pray for with all those house showings and especially with Dad's crazy day on Thursday.  That is another neat thing that happened this week I suppose.  

And I did write the Blotters a little letter, just to thank them for sending me their Christmas card and a little note and 20 dollars!  So nice!  I wrote a few other people who sent me things as well and am still writing thank you notes to everyone that sent me things.  A lot of people sent me Christmas cards and usually a little note as well.  I was grateful to receive them all.  Also I have gotten both of your packages and thanks so much for sending both of them!  So nice!  You guys are the very best!  The blue light makes a great alarm clock too, it shines a bright light on you with sounds!  But thanks so much for all your letters and packages :)

Also just fyi, I do get Grandpa's letters I just haven't had a ton of time to write him back yet!  I have loved hearing from him so thank him if you can before I do :)  I will try to write him back quickly!

That is also really fun that Abby had such a great time with Calvin.  I am so happy for her and any success or cool things that my siblings (and parents :)) have!  I'm sure you guys have an idea how much I miss you all, but just know that I love you all so much and miss you very much!  I love seeing pictures of you all on the calendar you sent and the Christmas card :)  My favorite is the one of me and Estee by that big nametag we got hahaha but make sure to tell Estee that :) haha Oh and tell Abby that that is too bad that she got those bruises from ice skating but I am glad that she had a great time!  Also that I do know exactly who Alex Outsen is.  I'm sure he will do a great job in Albania, what a neat mission.  I have met a few Albanians on my mission and they have told me that since it used to be a communist place, many people really don't have a religious background or sometimes they are Muslim.  Oh and I wanted to say that Bob sounds like the nicest guy ever and I am glad that you now know him!  Lastly, how exciting for Mollie and Luke!  I hope the best for them.  

Thanks for keeping me updated and I love to hear from you all and how things are going.  I love you and miss you and hope you have a great week!


Äldste Ward

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