Thanks for all the love and support! You are all the best and I'm so grateful for all of you.
So the weather here has been super weird! It's been really warm averaging around 8 degrees celcius so unfortunately, I probably won't be having a white christmas. It sounds like it is snowing a lot in Utah. That is good. I guess in Norway it is common for cities along the coast to have pretty mild temperatures with no snow. If you drive an hour inland you will find snow.
So I saw the Northern lights this last week. It was super cool and also really rare. Usually you don't see them unless you are above the article circle in the North zone. It was like a white wave in the sky, pretty spectacular. I didn't have my camera on me so I wasn't able to get a picture :(
This last week was really good. I forgot my journal at home so I don't remember everything we did so I will just tell you the highlights!
On Tuesday, we were able to teach --- again. It was a great lesson! We taught him the Plan of Salvation. He had a lot of questions and some about life after death. He kept telling us that it makes sense and at the end of the lesson he even said the prayer. Our goal was to help him understand that through prayer he could receive answers and know things are true through the power of the Holy Ghost. It was awesome!
On Wednesday, we were invited to a Christmas Concert. There is a half American Norwegian family that we met banking and their daughters were having their Highschool Band and Orchestra and Choir Concert They invited us to attend. It was really good. The concert was in the big State Norwegian Church. They ahve these massive Churchs in just about every city. They are pretty.They also invited us over on Christmas morning for brunch but they ahve yet to let us know the time. They are a nonmember family. They are really nice.
On Thursday, we did some street contacting and weekly planning. That night we went over to the ---'s for dinner. We shared with them a message about the Sacrament. We talked about how important it is to prepare for the Sacrament each week. We talked about how during Christmas we remember the Saviors birth and how each week we have a special opportunity to remember our Savior's Atonement. It is interesting how we are often told to remember in the Church. We are reminded often about the importance of prayer an Scripture Study. As we remember Jesus more in our lives we are drawn closer to him. We can follow his example and strive to become more like him.
On Friday, we visited --- and ---. They had their baby a week ago so we stopped by and dropped off some banana bread we baked. They are doing really well. We shared with them the Christmas video, En Frelser er født, or A savior is born. I love that video. It really invites the Christmas spirit. We were also able to teach a man named ---. We met him on the street one time and he gave us his email address. We are meeting with him again tomorrow. We were also able to visit ---. --- has been super busy with his work schedule. They are doing really well though. ---'s mom is visiting for Christmas. --- has such a strong desire to start coming to church again. She is also a good missionary! She asked us to show ---'s mom some mormon messages and then she invited ---'s mom to Church. They were planning on comming but weren't able to make it. But they are doing really well and I'm excited for their progress.
On Saturday, we had a Christmas Devotional with the Telemark and East zones. It was in Oslo. It was really fun. We had zone leader training for two hours and then lunch. After lunch we had a talent Show and a short Christmas Devotional. I love President and Sister Hill. They are so full of goodness and love. It was great to be with the other missionaries and to spend time all together. After that we went banking aka knocking on doors. We drove out into the Country side to try a area we had never been before. While we were out we saw the Northern lights. They weren't super bright but definitely a sight to behold.
On Sunday, we had a Christmas Sacrament meeting. We had musical numbers mixed with Scripture reading. I sang in the Choir which was fun. There were about 8 of us. After Church we went to the Engstrøms for dinner. They are a family that lives in the Drammen ward but they come to Tønsberg to help strengthen it. It was so fun. They had their son over and his wife and some grand children. The son said that he saw the new Star wars and that it was way good. Definitely looking for to seeing it someday!
Yesterday, we had an appointment with a less active member and after that we taught ---. He is a nice man. He kept wanting us to tell him the historical background and evidence of the Book of Mormon to give him proof. We told him that a witness of the truthfulness of the book of Mormon comes from reading it and praying aobut it. We found a talk, "What is the blue print of Christs Church" by Tad R Calister that we are going to share with him. I think he will like it. It is a really good talk that explains how our Church truly is Christ's Church. After him, we visited ---. She is so nice. We helped her set up some Christmas decorations and she also made us porridge. It is a Norwegian Christmas tradition to eat Porridge. And part of the tradition is to hide 1 almond in the porridge and whoever gets it in their bowl wins a gift. I won! The gift was a couple Traditional Norwegian Christmas books. Really excited about that.
Anyway, Things are going well. Norway is a beautiful Country and the people are good. They love Christmas! In Norway their main Christmas celebration is Christmas Eve. That is when they open the presents together. Christmas also last several days. It Starts on the 23 and goes for several days after Christmas. I don't know all the traditions but it is something I want to learn.
I know the Church is true. I know Jesus is the Christ. I know God is our Father in Heaven. I know that families can be together forever. This life is a test and with that comes challenges, but every challenge is their so we can learn from it. There is a quote that I will paraphrase. Every trial, challenge, and test we face is for one reason. That is, to give us the opportunity to apply the teachings of the Gosppel of Jesus Christ. When we apply the Gospel in our life, we learn, we grow, we are happy, we are at peace, and our testimony is strengthened. The more we apply the gospel the more we are converted. It is a process.
I'm excited to talk to you all on Christmas!!!
Have a great week! Sure love you!