I missed doing an email last week. They take a long time to write and we don’t have a lot of time here!
So much has happened. We had zone conference the week before last and it was absolutely fantastic! Sister Benedict and I gave a presentation in Norwegian and it actually went really well! Norwegian is a beautiful language. I make a lot of mistakes still but I can usually say what I need to.
One fun Norwegian fact: the word “bønner” means farmer, beans, and prayers, with slightly different inflections.
Jon Schmidt from the Piano Guys actually called into our zone conference, which is a training meeting with all the missionaries in the nearest 4 or so cities. He baptized a woman in Fredrikstad, Norway, where we met for zone conference. She told her story of how they had met and her conversion, and he told his side of the story as well. It was incredible! His meetings with her family were among the most defining moments of his life, and he was emotional when he talked about them.
He took some time to talk to us missionaries and it was very moving. He has been through a lot of incredibly difficult experiences in his life, both during and after his mission in Norway, but he and his wonderful wife have found the strength to weather them through their faith in Jesus Christ. They are great people.
Last week I had a training for new missionaries in Norway. I got to spend some time with my companions from the Missionary Training Center back in March. I hadn’t seen them since the plane ride here, and it was great to see them again!
I learned a lot during the training and I got to know the mission president and his wife a little better. Also they had sushi for us on the first day and I could have cried! I love sushi and think about it all the time. Every time I have been craving something, someone has given us that food within a day. First it was beef stew, then sushi (twice), then chocolate pudding, then Indian food. Little things like that have helped me feel like God is aware of me and loves me.
The buses in the Oslo area aren’t running right now because all the bus drivers are on strike. We share a car with the Elders, so whoever doesn’t have the car has to either take the train or walk. So that’s been exciting! We walked 1 1/2 hours home from church the week before last and the Elders did last week. At least the pandemic isn’t too bad here. Now we have to wear face masks when we are on the train in Oslo, but that’s it. We still have church and we can go into restaurants and into people’s home
I read John 14:27 a few days ago: “Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.” (KJV)
As I read it, I felt so strongly that Jesus was not just a good teacher–that the man who said those words was who he claimed to be: the Son of God. This is something that I have worked to develop faith in for a long time. Sometimes my faith is strong and sometimes it is very weak. But while I was reading that verse I could feel that it was true.
Anyway, I am so excited for General Conference on October 3rd and 4th! I love how listening to it inspires me to work harder to be a better person. You can find it at churchofjesuschrist.org.
1. The Elders getting a ball from a tree
2. My companion, Sister Benedict, with churros and nutella!
3. One of my MTC companions and I by the castle in Oslo
4. The view by a ward member’s house