Monday, September 23, 2013

9/23/2013 - I gotta admit, I'm grateful for that drunk man!


and I still feel like I can't understand anything! But it's coming along. Fall is officially in full swing and we didn't get to see the sun for 4 days in a row this week, but it still is soooo beautiful here with the changing leaves and misty skies. 

Basically there are a lot a drunks here and we had another encounter with one. We were on our way  home and we were waiting at the bus stop. It was around 8:30 at night and it was already totally dark. There was a woman there, wearing black and camo with piercings on her lips. We started talking to her and we brought up the gospel and she was just not feeling it. She said it was personal and that she didn't really want to discuss it. We asked if she had read the Mormonin Kirja (Book of Mormon), and she said no but that if she wants to she'll find it on her own. Basically she was a tough cookie to crack. Well when we thought all hope was lost, a very drunk man walked up to us. He started getting in our faces, and he actually ran into me with a lot of force (which I will admit scared me quite a bit). He waved his cigarette in my comps face and would not leave us alone. The Finnish woman told him to keep moving along, but he wouldn't and it was quite obvious that she was getting scared too. He just kept harassing us, so finally it got to the point where we said we need to leave. My comps and this woman and I started walking to the next bus stop. The drunk man tried to follow us, but was running into parked cars and stuff (THIS IS WHY DRINKING IS BAD PEOPLE). When we were about half way to the bus stop, our bus came! so we missed it! At this point we just kept walking. As we walked, we started talking with this woman. She ended up being sooo sweet! And we ended up walking a long time to the center of the city to wait where it was safest (Finland is a very safe country, but being out late at night with sooo many drunk men as a woman isn't the smartest idea). We passed lots of bars and men, but we just walked with a purpose and nobody else bothered us. When we finally got to our bus stop (and it was quite the walk!) we were pretty much best friends with this girl. When we got on the bus, she sat down next to me without even questioning it. I told her that if she ever needed anything, she can count on us as her friends. I told her that I was glad that we had been together. She said she was too and that she felt that she had to protect us. After that Sisar
Hubner said that she wanted to give her a Book of Mormon to thank her. She took it readily. Sisar Egan asked for her number so we could meet again and she gave it without hesitation. She told us she would love to meet again and discuss and that she was very touched by our gift (the Book of Mormon). It was amazing to see the transformation that came over her! She went form barely saying "moi" back to us to being our best friend. I gotta admit, I'm grateful for that drunk man! Heavenly Father sure does have a sense of humor. The church is true people!

Sisar Egan (my trainer) was sick a lot this week, so there were a few times where Sisar Hubner and I went out into the world alone. Two greenies (new missionaries) trying to preach the gospel! We ran into some interesting people, including a very devout atheist who tried to argue with us (even though we kept saying we were not there to argue, we were there to simply testify of our beliefs). We also taught the woman from my last email - the drama teacher who had seen us at church. The spirit was incredible. Sisar Hubner and I had to do it on our own, but we weren't alone. Heavenly Father played a huge role in our lesson and we ended up committing her to be baptized when she comes to know that these things are all true! When we asked her, she said "well everything you've told me so far makes sense". (We taught about the Restoration, about Joseph Smith, and the Book of Mormon). and so she said "why not?". I loved that. It was seriously an awesome lesson and I'm soo stoked to teach her again!

There's a family in the ward that is less active (meaning they don't come to church but are baptized members) that we went to visit. We were told they were hard to meet with - so as sister missionaries, we baked cookies and took them over. When we knocked we heard voices. We heard somebody say "kuka? kuka?!" meaning "who is it?" We responded that we were the new sister missionaries in their ward and we came by to meet them. They didn't open the door. We then said that we had made cookies and brought them over to give to them. The door flew open. A 14 year old girl stood there with her mom and younger siblings behind her. They're from Angola and only the 14 year old really knows Finnish. The mom speaks mostly Portuguese (her native tongue). We gave them the cookies and talked with them quite a bit. They actually responded to us very warmly and gave us their number so we could come back (A MIRACLE). Sarah (who was baptized a few weeks ago) is also from Angola! The crazy thing is that yesterday (Sunday) we told Sarah about this family and she got so excited. In the other ward a family from Angola has just moved in as well. Right as we started telling her this, she stopped us and said "Wait! before you tell me anything, I want to tell you about my dream last night!" Sarah has this amazing gift where her dreams actually mean something. Mine are always ridiculous and don't make much sense. Her's do. She had dreamed the night before about Angola and coming together with people from her home country. Well that's pretty much what is happening. She has already said she wants to help this less active family come back to church and she met and welcomed the new Angolan family in the other ward. She is seriously such an amazing example to me. Here she's only been a member a few weeks, and she focuses so much of her time and energy on bringing others closer to Christ. She truly is an example to us all. 

Well, the land of the Finns is doing great. I've been eating quite a bit of Finnish food lately and it's WAAAAY GOOD. I've decided to make a list of random Finnish quirks/things so you can get a little bit of a better image of my life:
1. There are no separate showers. The shower is in the middle of the bathroom and you just squeegie everything when you're done. 
2. We don't have any dryers - everything gets hung up. (which actually has proven to be an extra pain because due to the fact that it's very wet here, often times your clothes end up stinking after they dry because it took them so long to dry. and then you have to wash them again. but oh well)
3. Mummos are the best! (grandmas). a sweet mummo from one of the wards knitted me some BOMB AWESOME SOCKS!
4. Speaking of knitting, EVERYBODY KNITS. Apparently they learn it in school. 
5. Wooden butter knives are all the rage.
6. The bus systems here are amazing. They go everywhere and everybody uses them. 
7. Bread and chocolate help the world go round. and apples. 
8. Everrrrrybody and their mom has either a cat or a dog. I'm going to be honest, being on a mission makes me want to never have either one. 
9. they mostly sell juice in bottles that is very concentrated juice syrup. You then add water to it to make it into the juice that you drink. (which is actually really brilliant). Wanna know what's not brilliant? When a sweet older woman in the ward gives you some and your name is Sisar Nielsen and you're suuuper thirsty so you open the fridge, pour some in a glass, and throw it back and totally forget that you didn't add water to it! Needless to say, my throat was coated, but it's all good. 
10. H&M stores are on every corner. 

Well I love you all and the church is true. In this world of so much darkness, the gospel is my light. I'm so grateful and humbled that I have it and I never ever want to take it for granted. KIRKKO ON TOTTA. 

Sisar Nielsen  -       ps so Sisar Hubner and I have been making a couple language mistakes lately...... apparently to some people when we have tried to ask them "are you religious?" we've actually been asking them "are you faithful?" I guess that explains why they've said "that's a very personal question..." and walked away. ooooops. We were only off by one letter, but apparently that one letter makes quite the difference! Welllll just remember folks:


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