Oslo Norway Mission, Called to Serve

Oslo Norway Mission, Called to Serve

Sunday, March 26, 2017

March 20 - Romerike

Hey Everyone!

Thanks for your love and support! 

It was a great week here in Romerike. The weather is warming up and we are getting excited for "spring" but you never know with the weather in Norway. I was thinking the other day how grateful I am for the different seasons of the year.  It adds variety.

Last monday, we had a lesson with -- and -- and it was awesome! We talked about prayer and watched the restoration video. Last time we met with them we invited them to church and they were hesitant and told us they were active in their congregation and so we went into this lesson not with that focus but then in the middle of the lesson, --, said that they were thinking and want to come to church in the next couple weeks. Also, -- finished 1st Nephi and told us he would be done with 2nd Nephi before we come next week. They are a great family and it was exciting to see them progress.

We also had some great visits with some members this week. Bishop had us over for dinner and we took with us fresh book of mormons and all wrote our testimonies in them so we can hand them out in the next couple weeks. We are also working with a less active member/new convert, and had a great meeting. He made the point that it can be easy to recognize the "correct choice/ right choice" when it is between something bad and good, but often we must choose between 2 things that aren't inherently bad but are good things. And in his situation, he works night shifts as a security guy and so he works often on sundays and then some sundays he doesn't work but then he has family and friends he likes visiting and so he has to travel on the weekends and doesn't make it to church. We are going to meet with him and his hometeacher this week. Really looking forward to that. 

We weren't able to meet with too many investigators this week. One canceled on us twice and another dropped us, and one is out of town. But we got some awesome potentials for this coming week. Last week I told you about a family we knocked into that knew about mormons. We went back yesterday and the mom answered this time. They just had a birthday party for one of the kids so they were busy but we talked to her and her daughter (who's birthday it was) for a while and it turns out that her daughter knows Primary songs! The mom told us she knew I am a child of god, and families can be together forever. We were both shocked that they would teach their kids primary songs when they aren't members. Anyway, they told us to please come back so we will try them this week. Way pumped about them!

This upcoming week we have mission leadership council in Oslo so that should be fun. They will be introducing the Easter initiative. The video this year is titled, "The Prince of Peace" Sounds epic. 

So this last week, I started in my journal, Elder Witt's positivity list. Every day I write down the good things that happen that day. I'm a big believer in the power of gratitude and a positive attitude. Trials, and challenges are a part of our mortal experience. Let us make the most of each experience by applying the principles of the gospel to make it a positive one. I know the church is true and that we are lead by a living prophet, President Monson.  Have a great week!

Elder Witt

Sunday, March 19, 2017

March 13 - Romerike

Hey everyone!

They posted moves this morning.  I'll be staying another transfer in Romerike with Elder Richardson. It will only be a 5 week transfer and then the next one will be 7 weeks. I'm excited to be here for a another one in Romerike. We are starting to see some progress in the area and It will be fun to keep getting to know the members better and work more with them.

Here are some highlights of the week!

On Monday, for P day we visited Kongsvinger with the sisters and the Recent Convert who lives out there. We visited the old church and fortress. It was cool to visit the site and visit another place where some of our ancestors are from. We also had FHE and a birthday party for Sister Bennett. 

On Tuesday night, we joined some ward members, mostly Young adults, at the church to play indebandy. It is floor hockey. Way fun and a popular sport in Scandinavia, especially in Sweden.

On Wednesday, We had our district meeting in Hamar. Usually the Hamar elders travel down to be with us but we are going to start going up there once a transfer. We also had a really really nice visit with a member family and had dinner with them. We shared 3 Nephi 17:21 which says, "And when he (Jesus) had said these words, he wept, and the multitude bare record of it, and he took their little children, one by one, and blessed them, and prayed unto the Father for them." I love the idea presented and it teaches us a lot of Christ's ministry. He ministers to the multitude but also the individual at the same time. He feeds five thousand but teaches the woman at the well. His Kingdom is full of ones and is built one at a time. We can all follow the savior and help the one's in our life serve them. Then we had interviews with President. I love the Hills. They are dedicated and full of love! 

On Thursday, we had a lesson with --. She is doing awesome! It was a cool lesson and we were able to see all the progress she has made in the last 5 weeks. At first it was hard for her to accept the idea of prophets and now she is reading the book of mormon and accepted our soft invitation to be baptized. She said she would be baptized when she finds out it is true. Also on Thursday we visited Young mens, and talked about our missions. They were doing a mission prep activity.

On Friday, we had a cool experience. We were weekly planning and had a random thought to try back a woman that we gave a book of mormon at the beginning of the transfer. She lived nearby so we went and knocked on her house. Her husband answered and was way nice! They both like mormons a lot but are active christians in their own church. They have twins, and are a young norwegian family. They also have family prayer each night. Real solid, good and nice people. They told us they aren't looking to "change" but they asked if we could come back a different day. So that was cool.

On Saturday, we were on splits with the Oslo elders. I was with Elder Killpack, We got a call from the member in the woods who needed service so we went and helped him, and then visited --, the new convert in Kongsvinger. Elder Killpack was the one who baptized her so it was a happy reunion. We are currently going through the stories of Christ in the New testament with her. She is amazing and a great missionary. Her best friend, who lives in Arendal, was visiting and came to church with her.

On Sunday, it was testimony meeting and we had a good day in church. We taught primary to the 7 and 8 years and taught about baptism. It was pretty funny, They were so energetic and would not sit still. After church we knocked doors in Fjellhamar and an old man let us in. We had a nice visit with him but he isn't interested. 

My thought for the week is from a member who bore her testimony in church. She shared an experience she had this last week. She explained how recently she changed the way she prayed and start to ask something a long the lines of this. "I pray that I may have the courage and strength I need to be a good example and bless the lives of those around me and help them." It teaches a principle of agency. I know that we will be blessed with greater spiritual strength as we pray for the strength and courage to be agents and not objects and thus be instruments in the Hands of God to bless his children. 

I know the church is true! Hope you have a good week! 

March 6 - Romerike

Hey Everyone!

Thanks for your love and support. It was a good week here. On Monday and Tuesday we were booked with appointments and we counted and had taught the plan of salvation 3 times within 24 hours. That was fun for us. One of the lessons was with the family we are teaching. They are a solid family. We got a message from the father that he had read already to 2nd Nephi. He is way into Biblical history and loves the idea of the book of mormon. They told us that they aren't looking to change churches but are interested in learning about our message. They show signs of preparation. And I just pray that things will work out. 

On Wednesday, we had district meeting with Hamar. It was on the christlike attributes of Faith and Humility, and then on introducing the book of mormon.  It was interesting to study Faith and humitlity together. I've come to recognize that christlike attributes are all related. Striving to obtain one will help us developed another. I like to think of Humility as the great catylyst. It is necessary to spritual progression. After that we went to Kløfta and tried some people there and then joined the Elders quorum for a ward activity in the evening.

The highlight of the week though was definitely being able to go to Hamar for splits. A small line of my ancestors come from the Hamar area. I took a train to Hamar Thursday evening to spend Friday there. While in Hamar, we stopped by the Vang church and also the old Kay farm (where my ancestors are from) The farm is now gone and is now instead a garden store. However the old farm house from the 1800's still stands but has just been built on and renovated. We stopped by the garden store and I was able to talk with to Kay family members, I explained my relation to the kays. i was able to get some good information about the kay farm and history of the Kays. They also told me that they will send me more information via email if they find anything out. It was just a really exciting experience. The spirit of Elijah is real.  

On Saturday, we tried back a potential who let us in and we were able to have a lesson. He invited us back in a couple weeks.. That was exciting. 

On Sunday, there was a special stake conference broadcast. It was broadcasted from Salt Lake and for the Stakes in Northern Europe. The speakers were Elder Clayton, Sister Reeves, Elder Dykes, and Elder ballard. It was a powerful conference with good messages from all of them. 

My thought for the week comes from when I was on Splits with Elder Dawes. He shared with me an experience he had before his mission when he and some friends read the book of mormon in a day 24 hours. They took turns reading, listening to audio recordings, and playing basketball to keep them awake and alive, but they were able to do it. He told me how it helped the scriptures come alive and he saw connections and themes that he hadnever recognized before. It reminded me of Elder Bednar's talk "A Reservoir of Living Water". Elder Bednar asks "Are you and I daily reading, studying, and searching the scriptures in a way that enables us to hold fast to the rod of iron—or are you and I merely clinging? Are you and I pressing forward toward the fountain of living waters—relying upon the word of God? These are important questions for each of us to ponder prayerfully." I know that as we make efforts to connect ourselves with the source of living Water, Christ our savior, that we will be happier and feel the spirit more abundently. 

Ha det bra!

Elder Witt

Sunday, March 5, 2017

Februrary 27 - Romerike

Hey everyone! 

Thanks for your love and support. We woke up this week to beautiful blue skies and a fresh layer of snow. The weather this last week was great. I'm grateful for the sun and sunshine. One good thing is that we were able to get in contact with some people we have been trying for a couple weeks. 

On Tuesday we met with an investigator that I met on my first day in Romerike. He ended up moving away for 3 months and then finally came back.. While he was away we gave him to other missionaries and he went to church a couple times and showed progress. He has some challenges but we are hoping we can start meeting with him and working with him. Also on Tuesday we were knocked on the door of a woman who Elder Carver and I taught 4 weeks ago. She explained how she has been super busy but really liked our message and was interested and so she told us to come back not this week but next week. And also in the area we knocked into another guy. He is from Eritrea and has studied theology for 4 years and invited us right in. WE are going back this week. We were excited about that. 

On Wednesday we met with --. We read Alma 32 in the Book of Mormon with her in hopes to help her become more comfortable with it. We will be meeting her tomorrow. 

On Thursday we had Zone conference in Oslo. It was awesome! Sister Hill talked about "recharging our batteries" each day by exercise, healthy eating, and personal scripture study. Then President Hill went through segments from the worldwide missionary broadcast. We practiced inviting people to be baptized in the context of the plan of salvation. I was able to see Elder Dial and Braunberger again so that was fun. The mission office couple has been serving here for almost 2 years and will be going home soon and they shared some touching remarks. They are so funny and great. They gave a great tribute to President and Sister Hill and the love they have for us missionaries. I'm really grateful to be serving here with President and Sister Hill. 

On Friday, we tried people around the church and in a place called Fjellhamar and also met with -- the recent convert. We knocked on the house of a mom who invited us back next Sunday. She was way cool! 

On Saturday, we had an open day so we took the train and bus to a small place called Lørenfallet and tried a former investigator there. They weren't interested but we met an American who has a family here and was really nice. We invited him to church and he said that sounded interested so maybe he will come in the future sometime. you never know. 

On Sunday, we had a great day at church and then met with --, a recent convert. She is just amazing! A huge example to me of faithfulness. She drives over an hour to church every week and is the only member in her family. 

My thought this week is from the talk Grateful in Any Circumstances by president Ucthdorf. As part of this mortal life, we all experience trials, challenges, fears, doubts, or adversity in our life. In those moments it can be difficult to understand why it is happening..Often it can feel like a mountain to climb and you are only at the base. This week I was reminded of the power of gratitude. an Attitude of Gratitude in our circumstances has the power to heal and change hearts. President Uchtdorf said,

"When we are grateful to God in our circumstances, we can experience gentle peace in the midst of tribulation. In grief, we can still lift up our hearts in praise. In pain, we can glory in Christ’s Atonement. In the cold of bitter sorrow, we can experience the closeness and warmth of heaven’s embrace."

It is something I have felt. I know the gospel is true. Keep going and keep smiling!

Love, Elder Witt

Februrary 20 - Romerike

Hey family!!

It was a good week. I'm so grateful to be a missionary. The experiences you have and the lessons you learn as a missionary are priceless. I know God is real and has a plan for each of us. 

I don't have a ton of time to write so here are the highlights!

Monday for P-day we went ice skating in Oslo. Some of the missionaries there joined us along with the elders from Hamar. I'll send pics. The Hamar elders stayed with us Monday night for splits and then district meeting tuesday morning. On Monday night I was with Elder Dawes. We went to a nearby area to knock some doors. After finishing a row of houses it was getting late so we decided to just go to the downtown and talk to people on the street. After 30 minutes or so we were about to stop because there was almost no one on the street so we were just going to do something else but we talked to one more person. It was this young guy who lived with some mormons in Florida and knew a bunch there. He had a bunch of questions and we stood there talking to him in a little over 30 minutes and taught him shortly the restoration and plan of salvation. He was way cool. He was hesitant give us his information and meet in the future so we just invited him to church and gave him our card. I would not be surprised if he meets the missionaries in the future and then gets baptized. It was really just such a joyful experience. And to go with that, the same night, elder Richardson and Elder Hall visited a woman that we knocked into on my birthday and it turns out that it is a whole family. So they taught the mom and dad and they have a young boy who is way friendly and cool. We are way excited about this family. They are positive. 

-- our investigator came to the relief society party and loved it. We also taught a different woman we met on the street at the library. IT was a good lesson but she doesn't want to go forward with it. She has her own personal questions and concerns about God and wasn't interested in going forward. maybe in the future. 

We also went on splits with the Fredrikstad elders. That was fun. This week we have zone conference in Oslo so that will be good.

My spiritual thought comes from the lesson from Priesthood and Relief society on the pioneers. They are great examples of people who made sacrifices. And because of the sacrifices they made are we blessed today.  Sometimes we are required to make sacrifices. In one of the churches hymns it says, “Sacrifice brings forth the blessings of heaven.” Elder Oaks said, "Our lives of service and sacrifice are the most appropriate expressions of our commitment to serve the Master and our fellowmen." Sometimes we are called on to make sacrifices for the gospel. Sacrifices of time or maybe our desires. Our sacrifice then becomes a process in refining us and changing us. As we learn to make sacrifices with willing, loving and obedient heart, we will come to realize that the sacrifice we gave actually gave us more in return. I know the gospel is true. I'm grateful for the pioneers and for their example of faith and sacrifice.

Have a good week!!

Elder Witt