Monday, March 17, 2014

20

Well, greetings everyone from your no-longer-teenager-but-20-year-old-missionary Ældste Wawro. It's weird to think that I'm actually 20 years old, but I really don't feel much different. I'll have you know that my 20th birthday was INSANE, but we'll get to that a little bit later. :)

BTW, I did get all of my packages, Mom. Thank you so much! I am so glad to finally have pictures! They really are so great so thank you for sending them. Also, thank you for the fruit leather. You don't have to send any other candy in the future because the most of it I can get here. But if you do send anything foodwise, fruit leather is the way to go because I can't get it here and I LOVE IT! Also, Dad, thanks for sending the classical music!

That's crazy that you met one of Ældste Huffaker’s friends! What's her name? Maybe he's told me about her...but let me know!

As for Odense...it is such a beautiful place. It's an incredible city and I love it so much! There are also two wards here so it's crazy going from a branch to a city with two wards! I used to think that Danes in general were obsessed with Hans Christian Andersen, but it's nothing like here. They absolutely LOVE him. I'm going to have to visit his childhood home, it's pretty close to our apartment.

The apartment is great too. It's not super big, but it's one of the only apartments with a dishwasher. We also have a washing machine and the floor in the bathroom is heated! Awesome! I love it.


Elder Mogensen 
Ældste Mogensen is such a great companion. I am his follow-up trainer so he is just on his 3rd transfer here, but he already knows how to be a missionary. He had a great trainer and he's in general just a great guy, so I'm super glad to be with him! I'm also glad to finally be with someone whom I can learn Danish from. Since I've been training for most of my mission I haven't really had someone I could ask questions. We just speak Danish out of the apartment so that's been a great help for me. I think I forgot to tell you as well...Ældste Mogensen is the first missionary to come from Bornholm...ever. I think that's pretty awesome.

We had a lot of service this week. We helped a member move, helped a part member chop wood (a lot of wood), and helped another member dig a trench. Not going to lie, we are a little bit sore, but we are grateful to be able to serve those here in Odense.

Family History and Missionary Work
As a distrikt, we have been thinking a lot President Sederholm's call to use family history more in our missionary work. So, this last Distrikt møde [meeting], we collectively made a vision of what we wanted to happen here in Odense concerning family history and the use of the family history center by both members and non-members, as well as small goals of what we are going to do within this next week to help us achieve this vision. We have found family history to be an amazingly effective tool in working with both members and contacting people on the street. With every family that we've taught so far, they've mentioned that they have friends that would be interested in family history and took cards from us to pass out to their friends. One family in particular told us that family history is the right route to be taking here in Odense and are planning on beginning their family history as well as inviting their friends!

We had a couple less active meetings this past week. The first one is a little bit of a character, but very funny. But! He really loves the church and hopes that we can build our own Zion here in Odense. We have some plans to start getting him to come to church more often, he just has a little bit of a problem with some of our members. We're hoping to get those resolved. He also fed us some chili frikadeller [meatballs]...that was...interesting.

We also met with another awesome less active member. He's the painter here in Odense and he has some really great art. I was actually surprised to see how strong his testimony is of the Gospel. He truly loves the scriptures and this church. The biggest problem is that he only comes to church every other Sunday. The other Sundays he visits his mom and skips church. We're not exactly sure what to do about that, but nevertheless, he is a great member that we are excited to continue working with.

I also met our one investigator with a baptismal date. He is a man who is completely physically disabled and can't move anything but some of his fingers and head. He also seems to be a little bit slow mentally. He has such a strong testimony. I am very impressed with him. Despite all of his disabilities he does have quite a grasp of the basics of the Gospel. We showed him Mormonchannel.org this week and he was really excited to see all of this videos. We also invited him to church, but unfortunately, he didn't come even though he said he would. We'll follow up with him this week to see what exactly happened.

The last exciting thing that I can think of right now is that this past week we received a referral. We went out to visit it and it was this younger man who's studied religion for a while and wanted a Book of Mormon for both him and his friend. He seems pretty positive and we're meeting with him tonight, so we'll let you know how that goes!

Birthday Adventures 
Now, concerning my birthday...
It all began waking up very sore because we had been digging a trench for about 3 hours the day before. We had some studies and then went to go renew Ældste Mogensens bus pass...but they were closed. So we had no way to get around! Luckily, the last missionary here left his "Welcome to Odense" packet we get when we register at the commune which gave Ældste Mogensen a free trip one place and back on the bus. That was just what we needed to get to one of our investigators.
Birthday Toast


On the way to that investigator we saw a woman running around in a naked man suit...ya, weird. Then Ældste Mogensen bought me a pastry that is a specialty to Fyn and it was sooooo good! We then had to go down to Svenborg to have an eating appointment with a member. All of our distrikt was invited. It's about a 45 min. train ride. We get down there and meet the Svenborg Elders who proceeded to tell us that the member called just 5 minutes ago to tell us that she had forgotten our eating appointment! So she picked us up and drove us to a kebab house and bought us all some kebabs...ha, good thing I love kebabs!

After that we had some time to kill, so we decided to split up and go contacting down the gågade [a pedestrian zone]. We met up 45 min. later to see the Sisters still contacting a man. They took 20 minutes to contact him and we really needed to get to our train. We quickly scurried over to the train station and let the Sisters buy their tickets first. Right after the Sisters got on the doors on the train closed and it drove away...we just kind of stood there because it was the last train to Odense of the night. So we had to sleep with the Svenborg Elders, which was fun. We squished their two beds together and three of us slept horizontally on that while Ældste Mogensen took the couch...so uncomfortable! A brilliant conclusion to my 20th birthday.

 That was my week! I'm looking forward to all the new adventures Odense has to offer this week! Hurrah!


-Ældste Wawro
Two cool guys on the train