I am in Finland! Can you believe it!? I sure can't. Well I hope you can bear with me while I try and write this. I am using a Finnish keyboard that I am not used to. Finland is beautiful and I have a wonderful companion, Sisar Fronk! We are serving in Kilo, which is a suburb of Espoo, which is just outside of the capital, Helsinki, and I love it! The people of Finland are amazing and seriously the nicest people I have ever met! Another upside is that I am serving in the area of the temple and am actually within walking distance of the temple!
Arriving in Finland
Anyway, when I first arrived in Finland we met up with our mission president and the AP's then we went to the temple and wrote down some of our thoughts and then we went to the president's house and had dinner, got interviewed and went to bed. We got to sleep in the next morning before we went to the offices in Nietsytpolku and had a meeting where we would find out where and who we would be serving with. To be honest, I don't remember much of this meeting because of the jetlag which was awful! I still don't think that I have fully recovered from it!
People From All Over the World
The first day was crazy! When we got to Kilo we actually had an appointment that night to go and teach one of our investigators, Alva Rewell her dad is actually already a member of the church but her mom isn't, but we realized that we had lost the keys and so we couldn't get into our apartment. It is a brand new apartment so there are no keys at the main offices either! Sisar Nyman and Sisar Francis were also staying with us but it turns out that we were homeless. So they watched our luggage while we went to teach Alva. That was my first lesson in Finnish and it was so scary! I thought that I knew how to speak Finnish and then I got to Finland and learned that I actually don't know how to say anything. Sisar Fronk would just turn and look at me and say' what about you?' and I would then have to say something in awful Finnish. But the language is sort of coming. The hard thing is that we are in an area where there are a ton of people from all over the world who are in Finland just for school. So we teach in English all the time! I have actually taught more lessons in English than I have in Finnish, which is awesome because then I can actually say something!
Planted Seeds and Baptisms
We have an investigator, Hai, who is Vietnamese and is getting baptized on Saturday! He is awesome and we love him! We are so excited for him and it is crazy because it is actually someone who Veli Arneson (my teacher from the MTC) taught while he was here.
Never Enough Time
I wish I had more time to tell you about the amazing experiences and stories that I have to share since being here. But it looks like we are out of time and I don't know if we will be getting back on or not. But If we do I will send a second email letting you know all about it and if not then I will write it and send it to you and then you can here all about my first week here in Finland! Just know that I love all of you and thank you for all of your support!
A little about Espoo
|Nokia Headquarters is in Espoo|
Espoo is the second largest municipality in Finland with the population of 248,355. It is part of the Helsinki Metropolitan Area and contains the national park of Nuuksio, situated in northwest.
The main campus of the Aalto University is based in Otaniemi, Espoo, along with a thriving technology community that includes numerous IT companies and VTT – the Technical Research Center of Finland. Nokia is headquartered Espoo, along with other high-tech companies such as KONE, Tekla and Fortum.
|Kaitalampi Lake, Espoo, Finland|
The population is roughly 95% Finnish and 5% other nationalities. Religious affiliation is about 77% Lutheran, 1% Orthodox, 1% other and 20% no religious affiliation.
Espoo contains many high income suburbs, and six out of the ten highest average income postal areas in Finland are in Espoo.