Tuesday, September 16, 2014

September 15, 2014

Käre Familj,

There's a hundred and six days left of my mission
And school comes along just to end it!
So the obvious problem when you're in this position
Is finding a good way to spend it...

Like maybe:

Building up Zion
By strengthening members
And helping testimonies formin'.
Discovering families that want to be sealed,
And giving away Books of Mormon!

Planning baptisms,
Using the gift of tongues,
And knocking on doors in the rain!
Setting up goals and plans,
Contacting Syrians,
And driving the Elders insane!

As you can see there's a whole lot of work to do,
But miracles haven't ceased!
All this and more is gonna be in store
Before I get released!
All this and more is already in store
Before I get released!

I've been waiting months to be at this point in my mission so I could write this song. It's just too bad P-Day isn't on Wednesday when there are 104 days left. While I was coming up with the song Syster Austin said "Whoa...you only have a summer vacation left." That is not long enough!

Things are going well here in little old Norrköping! It's funny because Norrköping is the biggest city I've served in, but it's the smallest area (the area split is totally unequal) and the smallest ward. And it's not even that big of a city, or that small of a ward. I'm just a little city, big ward kind of missionary I guess.

One of the exciting things that happened on Tuesday was, I found a family! Of Swedes! Granted, they lived in the 1800s. Remember how Launa is letting me help her with her Swedish family history work? Well, on Tuesday I found her ancestor's whole family in a church book, so I found his three siblings and his parents. Is that cool or what?! It came with about the same amount of excitement as finding a family to teach. Family History in Sweden is really awesome because they took very detailed records. It's just sometimes hard to read.

Also on Tuesday we taught Mayda again. She's really funny, and I think she's more open than she lets on. She has a bunch of questions, especially how the Bible and Book of Mormon go together, but she seems to accept our answers. At least she accepts that it's something worth thinking about. She might be a tough one, but she's really close to the Spirit, so I have high hopes for her!

Tuesday night we got to attend a broadcast for all the women in Europe. Elder and Sister Bednar talked, as well as Elder and Sister Teixeira and Elder and Sister Kearon from Europe's Area Presidency. They showed it in the Norrköping chapel for us. It was really inspiring, especially to see what they said specifically to women in Europe.

The real highlight of the week was on Thursday when we went up to Stockholm for the conference with Elder Bednar. The Kearons were there too. They were all very inspiring to listen to, and I learned so much. I learned a lot from the way Elder Bednar taught us. He didn't just stand up there and lecture for hours. He led a discussion with all of us missionaries. First we discussed the talks that he asked us to read in advance. Then we discussed what we were noticing about the pattern of discussion he was using. So he taught us how to teach by the way he taught us how to teach. Then he opened it up for questions. It was just awesome. So much inspiration. So many ways I can be a better missionary and teacher.

That night when we were back in Norrköping with contacted a girl and her mom. They were from Serbia and the girl knew Swedish and translated for her mom. We told them who we were and that our church was just down the street and they asked if they could come see it. So we gave them a tour of the church and also happened to have the Restoration film with us in Serbian, so we watched that with them. They seemed pretty interested in it and said they'd come back on Saturday for a Serbian Book of Mormon, but they didn't. It was a cool experience though.

Saturday was Syster Austin's 21st birthday. She's officially old enough to be a real sister missionary! We made pizza on Friday night to celebrate. Then on Saturday we had lunch at Taco Bar (the best tacos I've had in Sweden for sure), and everyone cancelled on us or just didn't show up. So...that was a bummer of a birthday. But we were tracting that night and these two little girls were following us around watching us, so we got them to sing Happy Birthday in Swedish. (Ja må hon leva.) Then we came home and had Princess Tårta that we bought from the grocery store. And I wrapped the packages that her family sent. Later today we're going to have a mini birthday party for her and Äldste Miller, whose birthday was also on Saturday. We made yummy bars for Äldste Miller (they turned out really well, I think!) and the elders are going to bring a surprise treat for Syster Austin too.

Yesterday our VIPs were Olivia and Lisabeth (even though she's active now.) Olivia's doing great. We hadn't seen her since church last week but she said school's going well. We're only going to meet her on Sundays now because her mom wants her to focus on school during the week and help at home on Saturdays. If it was any new convert other than Olivia, I might worry, but Olivia is rock solid.

Pontus is back from Poland and he had a great time there. He went to church there on Sunday and he went to a single adults activity as well. He's also reading Preach My Gospel and he loves it. He wasn't at church yesterday though. Not sure why.

If you extend the kitchen to the east, what are you going to do with the crabapple tree? Can you replant it somewhere else?

I haven't met or heard of the Östheds. You only really meet the senior couples if you serve with them.

Francois didn't come to church yesterday. He said he would but didn't show up. Kind of like all the other lessons we tried to plan with him. I think he might be less busy now that elections are over. Mona called us to let us know she would be in the hospital until the beginning of October. :( But she still wants to meet after that! We passed Lyudmylo off to the elders since she's out in Nyköping which is in their area, and we don't want to go out there. She's willing to meet at the train station so they don't even need to worry about finding someone to come to her house with them.

Ultimate Mountain Biking sounds fun but hard and dangerous. I think we'll skip that idea for a sport this P-Day. I think we're going to play Kubb if we can find the set.

Thanks for the updates, even if you think you had a boring week! Have a wonderful week this week too! Jag älskar er!

Love, Delaney