First off, thanks once again for all the emails and letters that I get from everyone! I absolutely love to hear what is happening back home and am so thankful for all your thoughts, prayers, love, and support. Te olette ihania! (You're all wonderful!) :)
|6 Week Interim Training in Helsinki with my MTC group. I LOVE these missionaries!|
|With Elders Chapman and Hugie|
|With Elders Call and|
Well, this week has been a long one but it has been also a really good one because this week I had my interm-training!! It is the 6 week training that we get to go to and get back together with our MTC group! I absolutely love each and every single one of them! So I was SO excited to see them all! The training was from to Thursday from everyday. So it is pretty long and by the end of it I was definitely ready to be done but not to say good-bye to my MTC group. It was the last time that we would all be together. So kinda sad. But what the training is, is the first hour or so everyday we get trained on how to polish shoes, clean apartments, and wash our faces by President Rawlings. Then we would have this spiritual lesson and then we would do role plays and learn how to be better missionaries, etc. The best part of the whole training was really seeing my MTC group again. It was like being reunited with family again because really your MTC group is like your family in the field. They are great!
Count Down From Five
I also made a huge step for myself this week! So to begin... I am absolutely terrified of talking to people. The most that I ususlly say is "Moi. Miten Menne?" on the street and then I let my companion do the rest of the talking. But because it was Interim-training, we had Sister Hansen from my MTC group staying with me and Sister Vath. So I ended up on splits with sister Vath and when we got on the tram to head back to the train station to get to Kilo, there was a ton of us missionaries and I just went and sat down but she couldn't get through to me so she sat in front of me. So then when new people got on this guy sat right next to her and she started talking to him and then this lady came and sat next to me. All I thought was "Oh No! Now I have to talk to her!" haha so I took Elder Ahlquist's advice that he got from the tv show Lost when Jack is in surgery and everything is going wrong so he steps back and counts down from 5 and then is able to do it. Well, not even kidding, that is exactly what i did! I took a quiet deep breath and then counted down from 5 and started talking! It felt so good! I just asked her how her day was and then told her that I was new to Finland and really wanted to practice my Finnish and I asked if I could practice with her! So I did! I didn't ever talk about the gospel. I just got to know her and mentioned the church and it was really, really cool. She was so nice too! After that one time it wasn't so hard to talk to people. I ended up on splits with Sister Hansen for the next two days and we have both only been here for 6 weeks and were all on our own and it was in MY area so I was the one incharge! It was pretty nerve racking at first, but once I started doing it, it just got easier and easier and that was just so cool to see! Plus I think my Finnish finally has started to improve since the MTC! :)
Be Lifted by the Primary Children
We also had some really cool things that we got to do this week! Last Sunday, for example, we got to work with the Primary kids and it was so much fun! We did the invitation role play with them in their primary class and they are the cutest kids ever! We encouraged them to invite their friends to church or to the Christmas party this week and guess what?! Some of them have already told us that they have tried inviting people! These kids are amazing! Plus we are now famous with the primary kids! They all come up to us and say like "Hey! I know you! You came to primary and did this and this and this...." It is awesome! They are the cutest! One of the little boys is just so darn cute and speaks Finnish and English because his dad is American and his mom is Finnish and he absolutely loves the "boy" missionaries, haha. So in primary his dad told him to go sit by us because he was kinda being a problem causer and he had to explain that we are just like the boy missionaries except we are girls, haha. He came and talked to me in half Finnish half English. He said that what he wanted for Christmas in Finnish, which was a "granadi" and then would translate it into English which means 'granade', haha. He is so cute! We absolutely love him!
We also had a funny experience with our recent convert, Hai. haha. He is so funny! So we noticed that he didn't show up to church this week and he is always trying to come up with excuses why he shouldn't have to go to church all of the time. But really he is just trying to bug us. So we marched ourselves right on over to his house right after church to give him a hard time for not coming. We decided before had that we were going to glare at him and tease him by giving him a hard time so we rang the door bell and waited in our disappointed stance. Then all of a sudden we see someone peak out the window and the next thing we hear through the door is "I'm not at home," hahaha. We just died laughing after that so when he opened the door we couldn't talk because we were laughing so hard! Haha. We then found out why he wasn't there and talked to him and it was all great!
Christmas is Christ
Anyway, thank you for all you do! I am so exited about this Christmas season and to share the true meaning and center of Christmas! Christ. I am so grateful that through Him we can return to live with Him and our Father in Heaven again. I know that He is our Savior and that He knows us perfectly. He knows what each and every one of us is going through and that through Him and His atonement we can receive strength and help to overcome all our trails. I know that He love us and that through Him we can become clean and become better people. He is the perfect example and is the message of joy and hope for the entire world and I am so grateful for that.