Happy New Year everyone!
Thank you for your love and support!
I feel very blessed to have spent the holiday season here in Norway and especially in the Romerike ward. The members took very good care of us and we had a place to visit and have dinner every day this holiday season. I love Norway and Norwegian traditions. Norway has a rich culture where families are very important. We were able to try several different Norwegian, and also Romanian foods :) In Norway you have 2 main Christmas meals, Pinnekjøtt and Ribbe. Both are delicious. Usually pinnekjøtt is eaten on the west coast and ribbe in the east.
For New years eve, a member family invited us and another family over. This is where we had some traditional Romanian food because the mom is from Romania. We had a good dinner, played some games, and then went outside to watch the fireworks. We had permission to stay up to midnight if we were with members and if the members could drive us directly home afterwards. New Years is a big deal in Norway. I believe it is one of, if not the only day that fireworks are legal. from about 11:45 to 12:15 everyone is lighting of fireworks and it is so cool!
This week we also had several other good activities. we had a Christmas morningside broadcast with the whole mission. A couple members came and spoke to us sharing conversion stories or mission experiences. President and Sister Hill also did a year in review. It brought back several good memories. 2016 was as a great year and I'm very grateful for the opportunity of missionary service.
On Wednesday, we had a mission finding day where we were to focus on finding, We had fun wrapping book of mormons and restoration DVD's and handing them out as gifts and we also went caroling in the evening.
On Friday, it was a mission wide cleaning day, where we were to deep clean our apartments. It was super helpful and a good way to start the new year fresh.
Not much happened with investigators this week so now that the holidays are behind us we are looking forward to anew week and a new year!
Lastly, it was wonderful to finish the holiday by going to Church on Sunday. This Sunday, I really wanted to focus on the sacrament. I'm reminded of a time when I was in the MTC. Elder Oaks came and spoke to us about the spirit in missionary work. He said something along the lines of Every member is a missionary but every missionary is also a member. You need the blessings of the sacrament just as much as everyone else. The sacrament is truly a renewal for the soul. Sister Esplin gave a talk about that. She quotes elder Ballard. “I am a witness,” Elder Ballard said, “that there is a spirit attending the administration of the sacrament that warms the soul from head to foot; you feel the wounds of the spirit being healed, and the load being lifted. Comfort and happiness come to the soul that is worthy and truly desirous of partaking of this spiritual food.”11
Our wounded souls can be healed and renewed not only because the bread and water remind us of the Savior’s sacrifice of His flesh and blood but because the emblems also remind us that He will always be our “bread of life”12 and “living water.”
I know that is true! Christ is our bread of life and living water. In him we can find healing. He is the master healer. I love you all and wish you a good start to a happy year. Love