Copenhagen, Denmark

Copenhagen, Denmark Mission

Monday, October 9, 2017

Week 60 - 17 new missionaries from the MTC!

This week I got a new companion! Søster Holbrook from Bountiful Utah. She came to Denmark the same time as me (just was not in my MTC group because she already spoke a little Danish.)
We had a fun time meeting all the new missionaries (fresh from the MTC) as they arrived to the mission office on Tuesday. They were very tired looking! We got to each take one of the 4 new sisters out and contact for the first time. They were all SO excited to go out and talk to real Danish people. I got to be with Søster Peterson. She did a great job and could understand some of what people said!

Sister Hall just arrived from the MTC.  Our moms were college roommates!
After about 4 hours with the new missionaries and helping in the office, Søster Holbrook and I decided to grab a quick lunch before we went to a lesson. We went to Meny- Just a little grocery store down the street under the office and got a Pølser horn and sat outside to eat it. We looked off in the distance and saw 2 of the BRAND NEW missionaries off by themselves walking alone, each with nothing but a Book of Mormon in their hand. It was the sweetest thing!!! 
There were around 17 missionaries in the office all waiting to get interviews with President. Some of the older missionaries had taken the new ones out, but they still had SO much time to kill before interviews were done. It just touched my heart that these two brand new Elders, who have NO idea what they are doing yet, let alone probably can’t understand anyone they talk to, off by themselves to go work! Go Greenie Fire!!!
Søster Lanham (my half trainee) gets to train a new missionary this transfer! So I get to be a step grandma! She got Søster Peterson. 
Fun little miracle!- last time we went into Downtown Copenhagen to set up a table and give out books of Mormon, this guy from Macedonia comes up to the table and starts talking to us and takes a few pamphlets. We got his number and we met with him this last week and he is really interested! We have another appointment this week. 

So there is a member in our ward named Miranda. She is from Utah, and played professional Volleyball here last year. She knows Søster Holbrook really well, so she wanted to play a joke on her when she showed up. I had to convince Søster Holbrook that Miranda had gone a little inactive and moved in with her boyfriend 'John'. Søster Holbrook got WAY sad, and actually started stressing out, because she really looks up to Miranda. Miranda totally played along and invited us over to meet him....We didn't let it go on for too long. We were “going to help Miranda and John paint their new place”. We show up and it is actually our investigators Ryan’s house, and then Miranda tells Søster Holbrook it was all a joke and we all laugh and cry together. In the end we realized it probably wasn’t the nicest joke to play, it was funny and we all laughed. 

All of our investigators are doing well, and progressing! Frank comes to Church every week and we committed another investigator to baptism on Dec, 2nd. The work is going great!!!
Love, Sister Jones

Week 59 - General Conference

On Monday a bunch of missionaries in the Copenhagen area got together and played volleyball at the church and we made dinner together.  Lots of Hygge and Fun! 

Jan is doing well and progressing. He has been reading in the Book of Mormon, and closes each lesson with a prayer. A ton of progress!
Frank is also doing well. We taught him the Plan of Salvation, and it was so sweet to see the hope in his eyes when we talked about happiness and peace after this life. 
This week we also went into Copenhagen again to give out Books of Mormon. More Miracles! Someone walked up to the table, totally curious and took some stuff! Now we are meeting with him this week! 

It is so sad to me when I think about how many people don't have the understanding about life that the gospel brings. The more I strengthen my testimony, the more I realize how necessary it is to have one! I really don't know how the Danes do it, because I couldn’t do anything without the Lords help. 
 Saturday pretty much consisted of getting transfer calls, helping a member move and watching General Conference. Around 8:30, we saw President calling (he only calls if something big is happening to you) and so we got scared!

I would be getting a new companion, Sister Holbrook, and Sister Jex would be leaving to open up and new area and train a new sister! We are both super excited. General Conference was also amazing. Saturday night we watched the Saturday morning session of Conference at an investigators house. 

Sunday we watched more General Conference at the church and had a yummy chill dinner in between sessions. The tradition here for conference weekend is to go to the local candy stores ahead of time, and have a BIG bag of chocolate and sour gummy candy to  munch on. The Danes LOVE candy, and so there are cute candy stores on every corner. I felt pretty sick afterwards....I probably won’t eat candy for a while.
The best part of Sunday was our lesson with Gaurav. Gaurav was contacted by Sister Funk, the first time we did the Book of Mormon display in Copenhagen. Then a few weeks later when I was on splits we happened to knock into him! We have met a few times and he is a perfect investigator. He is 17, SO humble and willing to learn. He is reading in the Book of Mormon and actually understands it. He has come to every lesson prepared with so many great questions and pretty much understand everything. 
After he started praying, he texted us and said, "I feel like I have a new friend" So Cute!! Just this last lesson he said he wants to follow Christ’s example and be baptized! We have not set a goal yet, but will keep working with him. After getting rejected a lot by people who don’t feel like they  "need a God" in their life, it is so refreshing to teach someone who is humble and prepared. 
If there is one thing that I have realized lately it is how important the Gospel is and how happy it makes you. It is not just a cliché thing people say. The more you learn about the Gospel, study it, focus on Christ and really apply it in your life (Aka missionary work) you really are happier! 
So..... try and apply it this week and see how it works out for you :)
Love, Sister Jones

Monday, September 25, 2017

Week 58 - Steps of Faith

Another week down! I swear they keep going faster and faster.
For P day we went to a castle in Copenhagen, Rosenborg Slot. It’s a cute castle.  It’s really neat because they have a treasury in the basement and we got to see the Danish crown jewel and apparently the oldest sword known to man! (dates back to the 1400s?). Castles are always fun! I cannot believe people actually lived that fancy though... doesn't seem very comfy.

Monday night was fun... Søster Jex's finger had been hurting her the past couple days and it started swelling up. The night before she couldn’t sleep because of the pain. Turns out she got some kind of infection. The Danish health care system is not very good (if we tried to go to the ER they would tell us to make an appointment like 4 days later....- _- ) so we decided to treat it ourselves and play doctor :) We got the pus out, and cleaned it and I had to help Søster Jex from passing out because we was getting woozy ha-ha. But, whatever we did worked and her finger is getting better! 
Missionary work has also been great. Jan is progressing. I can personally notice a change in him from day Wow, I am telling you, when you start praying and reading in the Book of Mormon, the spirit can bring about changes! He has even admitted he is a little happier. But, we are still working on smoking and understanding. 
On a sadder note, we met with another investigator who could have been SO positive, but she dropped us. She has a huge faith in God, and we taught her about the Restoration and the Plan of Salvation, but she could not bring herself to ask if it was true. She just didn’t feel like it was right, and wanted to stick with the Bible. That made me WAY sad. I just could not understand how someone who is so faithful and humble before the Lord would not be touched by the spirit and know our message is true. 
It was a sad bike ride home in silence... but I guess I came to the conclusion that it is a HUGE step of faith to accept this message. Imagine growing up your whole life ( 60plus years in her case) and then one day having two sweet girls show up on your door step telling you there is more you don't have yet. It would take a whole lot of faith and humility and the Holy Ghost to change your life! This experience strengthened me and my personal testimony. I KNOW the Book of Mormon is true and is another witness of Jesus Christ.  I have read the book, pondered and prayed about it, and literally felt the spirit testify to me that it is true. 
We had splits twice this week, and had some great miracles. Gave out lots of Books of Mormon, found a few new investigators and had a good lesson with our investigator Frank. 
Speaking of Frank and miracles, he came to church on Sunday and showed up in a shirt with a hole in it. (He does not have very much money) Some American tourists came up to us after Sacrament meeting and gave us 300 kr to buy him a white shirt for church! We were so grateful! And I am sure Frank will be too. The Lord sent some angles to us that day :) 
Sunday night the Stake had a musical fireside. A big group of missionaries sang a song, 'I Danmak er jeg født' (I am born in Denmark). Kind of ironic because we are all Americans... But it was a beautiful song and we had a few investigators come.
Practicing my hair cutting skills
The weeks keep flying by. The work keeps going! Hopefully I am making an impact on the Danish people, because they have definitely had a positive impact on me.

Søster Jones

Thursday, September 21, 2017

Week 57 - Just share the Gospel of Jesus Christ!

Another great week!

We had a little time on Monday, and so we went to 'TGi-P-days' and enjoyed some good ol' American food.

We had a really great appointment with Jan that night, and taught the Word of Wisdom. He is slowly but surely making progress!

Tuesday and Wednesday we went on splits in Søborg and I got to go back to my "baby" area! It was REALLY weird walking back into the apartment. Just a flood of memories!  It still smells the same, and I am positive the same spider is still living in the corner of the bathroom. It was great to be back for a day, and do work there.
It rained the ENTIRE day on Wednesday. I was out from 12:30, to 9:00 PM and was just so wet by the end of the night that I wasn't even wet. But luckily in between we took a 30 minute break to evaluate splits and get some ice cream. (We went to Ismagieret, which is apparently the best place for ice cream in all of Denmark!)
Thursday we took an essentials day and got to do a session at the temple. That was a good break in the middle of a chaotic week.
Friday and Saturday we went around to the 3 different district meetings on Sjæland and gave training! The Ældster's talked about setting goals.  Sister Jex and I taught about how to have effective daily and weekly planning. We taught about how everything we do should be focused on the people we teach, and not just trying to fill in our schedules with 'stuff'.

Saturday we went to Støget (Downtown Copenhagen) and did a little Book of Mormon thing Again. We had a LOT of success. It may not sound like a lot, but we gave out 56 Books of Mormon in just 2 hours. That is actually really good for a place like here! But this is what I thought was the coolest thing...

A Sister that was in my group (we had two groups, one of each side of the Støget), was sitting by the fountain talking to these two Muslim boys. They probably were not super interested, but she talked to them for a while. Then a little while later, this lady from Norway walked up to the table. Sister Lanham and I just had come back to the table to grab more books to hand out. We start talking to her and she was REALLY interested in what we were doing and why. She said she overheard a girl talking about this book to some boys and got really curious. She is Lutheran, but wanted to know more about this book. So Søster Lanham and taught her the about restoration, and then she asked for a Book of Mormon! (Ha-ha no one ASKS for Books of Mormon here...)
You NEVER know who is listening. Don't be afraid to talk to anyone about the Gospel, or share your testimony with people.

Sunday Sister Jex and I sang in church. We sang, 'Thy Word is a lamp unto my feet' by Janice Kapp Perry. That was fun! We ended our week with another lesson with Jan. At the end of our lessons he says, ' I think we should close with a prayer' and then immediately starts praying. It is just so fun to see people build their faith and repent! I really look forward to our lessons and just love the people here!
Pass-along cards are good for so many things!

Soster Jones

Monday, September 11, 2017

Week 56 - The Rain is Back!

Well, after a good week of summer, the rain and cold is back to Denmark!
Here in Denmark they have a joke, 'Don't you just love a Danish Summer? Yes, it is the best day of the year!'
Ha-ha... but true. It rained just about the whole week. There was one night we planned to go to some food trucks for dinner, but it was raining so much we decided the 5 min bike ride was not worth it. If it is enough rain to keep me back from food, you know it is a lot of rain!
Our week started off kind of sad. We had to drop an investigator that just was not progressing. Søster Jex and I just love her, but new she was not making progress and so there was not much else we could do.
We also had a great Zone Conference on the Life of Christ, and how we can teach like him. This was one of the best Zone Conferences yet, probably because it was centered on Christ. What stuck out to me most was that Christ was calm. He was not rushing back and forth from appointment to appointment, or stressing about planning his lessons. He looked outward 100% of the time, with his heart completely focused on the will of the Father. I want to be calm like Christ.

Søster Jex and I gave a training on commitments. We told the missionaries we wanted to go to the NFL next week. Then we had an Elder come up who was pretty confident in football, and had him teach us everything we needed to know to be ready to play next week. Well, it didn't work. Why? Because we would need to PRACTICE!! hmmmmmm.....
In the Bible, John 7:17 Christ teaches us, 'If any man will do His will, he shall know of the doctrine, whether it be of God, or whether I speak of myself.'
So we talked about how important it is that we DO to gain our testimonies, and that we invite our investigators to DO. They need to keep commitments so they can change and become.
Our Zone group
After that training, we thought a lot about a few of our investigators. We have a few that we keep inviting to change, and do things that will help them repent and come closer to Christ, but they won’t keep commitments. So, we decided to stop seeing an investigator that just was not progressing. Søster Jex and I just loved her, but all we can do is invite, and in the end if someone does not choose to change, there is not much we can do. So we had to get pastries to drown out our sorrows.

We had a few more lessons with people this week, and battled the rain. It was great!

Here are a few pictures from last weeks P-day at the beach!

Søster Jones

Wednesday, September 6, 2017

Week 54 - Elephants

On p day we went to the beach with all the missionaries in Copenhagen and played sand volleyball and got ice cream! That was a blast.
Tuesday we had an appointment with a person who was recently baptized that we have been trying to get ahold of for forever! So that was really nice to meet with her, and she had a table FULL of bread and pastries and everything yummy to eat.
We did a lot more finding and teaching this week. Our goal this transfer is to give out 576 Books of Mormon. That comes out to about 1 book a day per companionship. So, of course Søster Jex and I are going super hard and trying to give out as many as we can. This has been really motivational and fun. We have DEFINITELY passed our goal, and right now are leading the District for how many we have given out. (I can't tell though, don't know if other missionaries are reading this ;)
Besweri, our recently baptized is doing great. The other day he called us and we were talking and then he says, 'you know? I didn’t think I would see change this fast. I am already starting to think about church more and how I can help people.' :) :) :) then he thanked us for helping come to know the gospel! It was the sweetest thing ever. It has been hard for him to come to church because he works a lot, but he told us this Sunday how he denied two offers to work that morning because he wants to make sure he is at church every Sunday! I LOVE seeing repentant hearts :)

On Thursday we had another birthday in our District, Søster Dietch! So we surprised her with a cute, yet full blown, Danish dinner! It was amazing! Søster Jex and I made a Danish traditional dessert, RødGød Med Fløde. (Also, that is the word that all Danes ask you to say because it is so hard to pronounce.) It is pretty much a mixed berry soup with cream poured on top! Yum!

That night we went to eat with an investigator that also served some more traditional Danish food! Stegt flæsk med persillesovs. It is pretty much crispy baked meat dipped in parsley sauce with potatoes! Double Yum!
This investigator was an exchange student a while back in Rexburg, ID with a Mormon family. He never though too much about the church, until he started raising his own family and realized he LOVED the values the Mormon family back in Idaho had. He absolutely LOVES the church and everything it stands for, but is trying to figure out if God actually exists or not.
Friday Amager came on splits and we continued to Celebrate Søster Deitch's birthday.  We had a little spa night with avocado masks.   Then enjoyed eating Bananas SPLITS on SPLITS! While we attempted doing the splits.... It was a successful day, and between the two companionships, we gave out 12 Books of Mormon and got 4 new investigators in one day!

Once again, everyone important all decided to come to church on the same day. We did our best to make all the investigators feel welcome and comfortable, while trying to stay sane!

We had a very good lesson on fasting too. I have always just thought of fasting as a way to show God, 'Hey look what I am giving up, that is how bad I want your help with this' type of thing. But really, fasting amplifies our ability to feel the spirit. We become more in tune with the spirit, and more receptive to receiving personal revelation. Have you ever thought about why fast and testimony meeting are held together? Or why you fast when you get a patriarchal blessing? And at the end of our fast, when we just can't take it anymore and just want to eat, that is when it is the strongest. That is when we should flip open our Book of Mormon, go find a quite spot and just read or ponder. Because we are giving up something worldly and of the 'natural man', we are focused on the spiritual and are better able to be in tune with God. I will definitely now have more meaningful fasts. 

 Søster Jones

Monday, August 28, 2017

Week 54 - Mini Mission

Hello! Another crazy week.

So because we are the STL's (Sister Training Leaders) in Copenhagen, it seems like we always have a ton of extra little 'duties'.  Monday we went on more splits with a sister who was waiting for her new companion to arrive from the MTC. Then, some other sisters needed a little help, so they also came over, so we had 5 sisters in our tiny apartment Monday night! But I am not complaining, ha-ha it was a fun 'sleepover' !

Tuesday we were in the office when all the new missionaries arrived. A whole bunch of Elders and one Sister. It reminded me of the day I arrived, and they took us to the mission office to sign papers, go out and contact people and try some pastries and Smørrbrød. It was a crazy overwhelming day, but so exciting. I cannot believe that was a year ago, and now I am an “old” missionary.
Later in the week we had MLC. We enjoyed Søster O'Bryant’s wonderful cooking, played some basketball, ate more food, and had an amazing training on how we can teach about Christ, and be like Christ. That’s what Zone Conference this transfer will be on, so we got a little sneak peek and assignments for what we will teach. MLC is great, because it is a reunion.  We can see the missionaries who serve on the other side of the country we haven’t  seen in a while.

When we got home from MLC Friday night, we realized that there was a 'Mini Mission' thing in the morning that we were supposed to help with, but we had never heard back from the guy that was in charge. So, after calling him a few times and no answer, we just threw together the whole thing. Just a little bit stressful.....
Mini Mission is an activity the Stake puts on for the youth, to let them experience what missionary life is like. In years past each youth would go on splits with a set of missionaries, and would actually stay the night and go out and teach and contact with them. Because of new church rules, we were not allowed to do that anymore, but just do a 'one day' thing instead. So we did a one day training on what missionary life is like, and how to be a missionary, and then took the youth out contacting.
Saturday morning, (still no word from the guy in charge,) we had a few youth from the Stake show up including three that traveled all the way from Bornholm to come! Luckily the Young Men’s  President showed up, and told us the guy in charge could not make it.  ;/ So that was a little frustrating that we had no communication, but luckily we planned the whole thing anyways, so it ended up working out.
We taught the youth about our everyday missionary life, and how they can prepare now, had some lunch then taught them how to answer some hard questions, and practiced teaching the Restoration! Then, we took them out on the streets by the temple in Copenhagen and contacted people.
The 14 year old girl I was with was so inspiring. She just LOVED it. The first maybe 10 people we talked to just gave us quick 'NO' yet, she kept expressing how happy she was trying to share the message, because she knew it was true. She bore Powerful Heart felt testimony, and truly inspired me to be a better missionary. Also, she was a Dane, so it was fun to hear how she said things, and it was nice she could understand everything the people on the street said. We ended up giving three Books of Mormon away, and learning a lot from each other. All in all the whole activity turned out really well! And I am so thankful for all the missionaries in Copenhagen that came and helped out.
Sunday, Besweri came to church and got confirmed! And all the missionaries had to speak. All I can say is this mission is REALLY teaching me how to wing it, because I didn’t have to time to prepare, and I just went up there with a Book of Mormon in my hand! (Plus it was Danish, so that adds a Little stress...) but I did fine! We all spoke so I only had 5 min, so it really was not that bad.

One of the best parts of the week though, was Sunday school class. We had a lesson on the sacrament and a less active member asked a really good question that I have also wondered about.
We know that the sacrament is tied to repentance and cleansing us from sin. BUT, we also know that when we commit a more serious sin we are not supposed to take the sacrament. In 3 Nephi 18 is also talks about how we should not take it unworthily. But yet, when we take it aren't we recommitting ourselves to God, and asking for forgiveness? This was something I was always a little confused about, then a member shared her thoughts and it all makes sense!

The act of taking the sacrament itself doesn’t not cleanse you from sin, neither the physical act of getting baptized. But it is repentance. We a required to repent of our sins before we get baptized, and we are supposed to repent before we take the sacrament also. Then when we are clean and worthy, we partake of the bread to sort of say ' thank you, I am using your Atonement. I am not perfect, but I promise I will try again this week'. So it is more of a symbolic thing we do to remember Christ after we repent.
Maybe you all already knew this, but it definitely stuck out to me this week. I am truly so grateful for Christ, and after focusing on him at MLC and in Sunday school, I really just love Him so much more and am grateful for the love he showed me through his Atonement. I know he lives, and that this is truly His gospel.
Love you all :)

Sister Jones