Tuesday, September 30, 2014

I Love General Conference!

Elder Wawro and Elder Jewkes on splits
Can you believe that General Conference is already here?! Things are flying by too quickly! We had a great week here in Ordrup, but I actually forgot my planner so I'm going to have to try to remember all of the most important details...

I started off the week on splits with Ballerup 2. I was with Ældste Jewkes in Ballerup and Ældste Metcalf was with Ældste Wilsher in Ordrup. It was a great splits and their district meeting was inspiring as well. It seems like everyone in the district really is working hard to achieve our zone goals. It was a grand ol' time!

Right after we went on splits with the Virum Elders. I was here in Ordrup with Ældste Mogensen. It was great fun to be with Ældste Mogensen again, but we also saw a lot of miracles together! We had 3 lessons in a row before 1:00 P.M.! The rest of the day we did some finding and ended together with an eating appointment with a member. Great day, but let's talk about some of the positive people we met with at those appointments:

We found 2 new investigators in one of those appointments. It is an aunt and her nephew and they come from Nepal. They are very nice people and active Hindus. That is, of course, going to be a big obstacle we're going to have to overcome, but they are both incredibly interested to learn more about Christ, even though they're not quite sure why. Great lesson and we're excited to share more about Christ in our next lesson!
Mission Leadership Council

The other great appointment we had was with *S*. He isn't your typical Dane. He loves the scriptures. Every time he reads scriptures or books about religion, he gets this feeling of peace, joy, and happiness that he can't describe and can't find any scientific explanation for. It just comes! He doesn't really have a specific Christian religion, but he goes to church every once in a while. Since our first lesson he's looked us up on Mormon.org and has read a lot about our standards. He thinks all of our "rules" are very practical and make a lot of sense. It's amazing! He took notes at we talked with him and he also wrote down all of our commitments we gave him. There's some good potential there.

The other highlight was, of course, [our investigator's] baptism. Even though he wasn't our investigator, it was such a powerful experience. He is from Iran and fled because he became convinced that Christianity was the truth. He is an incredibly intelligent man. He's actually a Dentist! It is such an inspirational story. The Spirit was so strong, actually, probably one of the most spiritual moments on my mission! He is amazing and we are so excited for him to continue to grow in the church.

So here is the crazy story for the week:
So Elijah Thomsen from the ward decided to invite us to an activity. He called it African Night. He told us that a bunch of Africans were getting together and that it would be a great opportunity for us to contact and meet a lot of people at one time. His brother was hosting it and so we could get in free. We decided, why not?!

Here's a few reasons "why not":
We finally arrive at this place, imagining a small building where they would be gathering. When we find the address we walk up to this giant 5 star hotel in the middle of Copenhagen! There's a red carpet from outside leading everyone in to this incredibly fancy African function. Everyone there is dressed as if they are going to the Oscars with tuxes and fancy dresses. We're only in our white shirts, ties, and slacks. Everyone there is African. Well, we are not African. Little did we know that we actually stumbled upon the finest African Event in Denmark, The Celebrate Africa Awards Ceremony.
Walking the Red Carpet

We tried to walk out as fast as we could, but Elijah came down in his nice suit and vest and convinced us to stay. Let's just say that the entire evening we were feeling quite out of place as we were sitting with all of these incredibly rich and successful Africans while we were, well, white Mormon Missionaries. Not everyday you experience something like that. Leave it to Elijah to leave out some critical details about the event.

This is the last week for the sister missionaries in our MTC Group! We're going to miss them a lot. But, good news, Ældste Ludlow is going to be back tomorrow!! So this is a farewell to the sister missionaries in our group, and a welcome back to our good friend Ældste Ludlow!

Thank you for everything you do! I love you all so much! Have a great week!

-Ældste Wawro

P.S. - Here's a picture of Ældste Jewkes and I on Splits together, and Ældste Metcalf "Sport Contacting" which means that if we win they have to listen to our message. We won.

Monday, September 22, 2014

The Doings in the Magical Land of Copenhagen

Elder Wawro,& Metcalf with Sister Wilhite who is from their same MTC group but is serving in Sweden and happened to walk into their
Family History Open House 
Why hello everyone! Here we are, the 22nd of September. It's amazing how time flies. It's actually especially weird this week, because of the projected return date, we have only 6 months this week until we're finished....that's just a weird thought. Gotta make these last 6 months really count!!!

CONGRATULATIONS TO NATHAN!!!  Ha, Ældste Metcalf and I were laughing so hard when we saw Nathan's Homecoming King pictures! I can't even believe it! Congrats!! And congrats to Phoebe Shepherd [Nathan’s date was named Homecoming Queen] as well!

BTW, I did get the package and we're excited to make some tacos! Did I mention that I made salsa for the entire zone last zone training? Ha, well I did!! Who know being Mexican would be so handy in the mission field?

This week was another great learning experience for Ældste Metcalf and I!

To start off with some great news...[a wife in a part-member family] is going to be baptized on the 11th of October!! We've finally been able to get in contact with them and [they] are both doing fantastic. She's already read through the entire Book of Mormon and has such a strong testimony. So that definitely was the highlight of the week!

We had splits with both the Assistants and with the Hillerød Elders. Both of them were great and I learned a lot from them. It's always fun to be on splits, although Ældste Metcalf and I have really missed working in our area together. And can be hard to focus on the area's needs when we're not together all the time, but we're also still learning a lot from our splits.

We've seen quite a bit of progress in our area, but are still really lacking somebody that is really positive in joining the church (besides, of course, the fore mentioned baptismal commitment). We have been finding plenty of new investigators, but a lot of them have either been burning us or dropping us. So we're going to have to start changing our tactics a little bit to find those that are really prepared to accept the gospel. So Ældste Metcalf and I have really started thinking about what we can be doing to receive more spiritual power in our missionary work. We're still trying to brainstorm, but we have a few ideas that we're going to try implementing in the next week.

We did find one new investigator that I'd like to talk a little bit about. He is from Greenland. He's had a pretty rough in his life up to this point in time. Basically, the only things that make him happy are the few people in his family that are still alive. His wife died a while ago and that's been especially hard for him. We really want to help him, but it's so hard to figure out how to best proceed given his situation. He has already begun to read in the Book of Mormon, so he's willing to hold commitments. Hopefully we can figure out how to best help this man, because he really needs the Gospel in his life.

Sundays are a little bit rough. We love going to church, of course, but the trains that bring us to the church up in Allerød are down on the weekends. It's already pretty far to get there, but because the trains our down we need to take a bus and so that makes our trip to church about 2 hours, and because we don't begin church until 2:00 and finish at 5:00, most of our day is taken by travel and church. We're going to have to find a way how we can be effective on Sundays even with all this travel, but it's going to be a little difficult!

Other than that, things have been pretty calm here in Ordrup. The works going well, we're working hard, and we're constantly evaluating ourselves to figure out how we can be better.

Miss you all! Love you!


-Ældste Wawro

Crazy Experience! I was holding an open house for family history and two people walked in. One was Sister Wilhite. Sister Wilhite is a Sister Missionary in Sweden that was in the MTC Group with us. She laughed so hard when she saw that Ældste Metcalf and I were companions!

The second one was just visiting. Somebody heard she was from Orem so they said, "Hey, Elder Wawro is from Orem!" Turns out, she's Jennifer Layton's older sister! Jennifer and I were friends in High School, so that was pretty fun!
Jennifer Layton's older sister

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Happy Half-Birthday 2014!

 Today's a big day. 6 months ago I became 20 years old. 6 months from now I'll be 21. Oh the possibilities.

Ældste Metcalf and I have had another great week together in Ordrup!

We've had Sister Sederholm's car for the past few days because President is in Iceland right now. Normally, that would be nice, but this time was special. It was a brand new car!! There were less than 100 Kilometers driven on it! I've never driven a car so new before. They are way nicer than the old ones we had, so that was pretty exciting.

We started off the week with our Zone Training. It was inspiring to see the excitement of the Zone and their willingness to achieve the high expectations that were presented to them. I am deeply inspired by their hard work and we're excited to see the miracles that are going to happen in the zone.

I went on splits right afterwards with Ældste Carroll, and we had a great time! It was fun to be with a new missionary and I was impressed by his willingness to work hard. You could see that he is a little overwhelmed because of the language, but he was more than willing to try new things.

We had a couple appointments together, but the highlight was with TB. Ældste Metcalf and I were going through the phone a couple days before and started calling all of the numbers that we didn't recognize. TB was one of them and we made an appointment with him. We thought he was an investigator, but when Ældste Carroll and I got to the appointment we found out that he actually is an inactive member, and he brought his non-member friend with! So we had the opportunity to teach both of them, and it went great. TB really wants to come back to the church, and he actually lives in Virum's area, so we're excited to see them start working with him and his friend.
Some very serious training going here!

Elijah Thomsen [a member-missionary] was with us for this appointment as well. It was a great learning experience for both Elijah and Ældste Carroll. We had a couple extra minutes before the appointment so I decided to go on one side of the road and contact people by myself while Ældste Carroll and Elijah contacted people on the other side. Ældste Carroll was really nervous at first because neither him or Elijah speak much Danish, but they ended up giving out a ton of cards to people! So that was a great experience and a testimony to me that God really does make up all the difference for us if we are but willing to put ourselves out there. 

Elder Metcalf and I have found a ton of potentials, but we've been having a little bit of a harder time making them new investigators. We actually had 7 Member Present Lessons planned for this week, but most of them ended up burning us, so that was a big dissappointment to us. But we know as we continue forward we'll be able to find those investigators!

We had a great lesson with [a part-member couple]. [The woman] is such a strong member, and [the man] really just needs to become a member. He is awesome. It was a fantastic eating appointment that they had us laughing like you wouldn't even believe! [He] is so open to the church as well. He comes every single Sunday, but I have no idea what it is that is keeping him from wanting to join. We'll have to find that out.

We had a crazy Saturday. Elijah was with us the entire day! We started off with soccer with the ward, which was fun. At 10:00 we invited ourselves over to help Jette move to her new ward. Thing was, the only person there was Chris Perkins. I, Ældste Metcalf, Chris, and Elijah moved all of Jette's stuff by ourselves! Luckily, we had Sister Sederholm’s car that day, otherwise it would have been completely impossible! That took from 10:00 till 5:00, where we had 15 min. to change our clothes and get to one of our appointments...which ended up getting cancelled on the way over. Elijah was still with us, so that was a huge disappointment that we couldn't teach with him, but we ended up knocking on some doors and found some potentials. He was a real trooper through it all.

I can't think of any other exciting details of our week...but I will say that I just feel good about the work that we are doing. For most of my mission I've felt pretty inadequate about my work and knew I could do so much more, but Ældste Metcalf and I are really just giving it all that we have. So I'm happy about the work, and that just gives me a much better feeling of peace. I also find myself a lot more focused on the work and not so much about home or my future. I've been richly blessed for the past few weeks.

I hope you all are doing well. I love you all and can't wait to hear from you next week!

Monday, September 8, 2014

A Special Witness of Christ

Sunday Evening Fireside at the Sederholms
 It's been another great week here in Ordrup!

We've found three new investigators this past week and had 3 investigators in church as well! We've been greatly blessed as we've been striving to do our part in the work.

But before all that...let's talk about Elder Bednar's visit to The Denmark Copenhagen Mission! There is no possible way I could describe to you everything that was learned or discussed, but basically we had three hours where he started by asking us questions, and the second half was us asking him any questions that we wanted. It was amazing. He is so amazing.

I played the prelude music, the hymns we sang, and the musical number. It was a compilation of some Primary Songs that the Sister Training Leaders sang to. It turned out really well! I also got to sit way close to him on the stand while I played, so that was pretty neat.
Traniing Sisters singing at Elder Bednar's Meeting 

Turns out that President Sederholm is very close with Elder Bednar. Elder Bednar moved into his stake, became Stake President, and called President Sederholm to be in the Stake Presidency. Basically, President Sederholm just knows everybody and is going to be a General Authority one day.

We had to leave right after it was finished so we didn't get to personally meet him or anything, but I did have a dialog with him as I answered one of his questions and he started asking me a bunch of other questions as well. Not going to lie, it was a little terrifying at first, but what an experience that I'll remember the rest of my life!

BTW, Iceland flew out to this conference so I got the package from Elder Daw! Thank you so much, you know I love fruit leather!

But here's a little bit about some of the investigators we found this week.

First is *M*. He's the brother of one of the members in our ward who has just gotten back from an extended visit to Randers. He's very believing and has been sitting in to our 15 min. lessons we've been teaching. I don't know how interested he is in changing right now, but hopefully these lessons will get him to start thinking.

The second one's name is *K*. Ældste Metcalf and I found him while knocking and I taught our first lesson with him on splits with Ældste Sakurada. He says that whenever he reads in scriptures or religious books he always gets this feeling of peace and happiness that he can't describe. We gave him a Book of Mormon and have another appointment this week to introduce the Restoration to him!

The last one is *P*. He is [a Ward member’s] little brother. He is 19 years old and hasn't really found a belief in anything yet. We met him for our first time a couple of weeks ago, but he came to church yesterday! He actually really seemed to enjoy it, so we hope that he'll be able to come in the future.

Ældste Metcalf and I have had great success as we've been striving to teach the 15 minute lessons to both investigators and members. We've had multiple very spiritual experiences with members as we've taught the Restoration to them, but I'm only going to share the latest one. We decided to stop by Helga and Hannah Nørrung in our ward Saturday Evening. As we shared the Restoration the Spirit came in so strongly. It actually only took 12 minutes altogether but we could all feel it. Right after, Helga thought of a person that he wanted to refer to us. It turns out that Ældste Metcalf met this very same person in Roskilde at the very beginning of his mission! So now they are going to invite him over for dinner and have us come as well and teach him the first lesson! It was a great miracle, and shows what happens as we strive to be obedient to the council we've been given.

Elders Ludlow and Wawro
So here's some sad news...Ældste Ludlow is heading back to the States tomorrow. He has been having liver problems and they decided that it's best that he goes back and gets inspected there because they can't find out what the problem is here. He is not getting released as a missionary though and hopefully he can come back before the transfer is through! He said he would love to meet you (actually, he's with me and Ældste Metcalf right now to spend his last P-Day) so maybe you can take him out to dinner or something.

Keep him in your prayers. We need him back in the field.

Elder Metcalf with Elder Wawro's Tube
To finish things off, I got a flat tire on my bike yesterday and had to walk home in the pouring rain. We tried to patch it this morning, but we found 5 different punctures in the tube! How does one get 5 punctures at the exact same time?! One of them was half an inch long! Needless to say, repairing the tube was a lost cause...so we won't be biking until I get a new tube! The fact that I got so many punctures at once was a miracle in of itself.

Love you all!

-Ældste Wawro

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Consecrated Missionaries (apparently still working on humility -Elder Metcalf) :)

Zone Training
Hello Folks! As you can see, Ældste Metcalf took some liberties in writing the title for this email.

This week has just been too much fun. Ældste Metcalf and I have been having a blast, but we've also been working the hardest I've ever worked on my mission. I can honestly say that we gave it everything we had this past week and we are tired! However, we have seen miracles and our area is about to get really busy. Even though we're tired, it's been so worth it and we're ready to give another week of hard work to find even more people to teach. We've set as a goal to become "consecrated missionaries," the kind of missionaries that God can trust with any task and knows that we will do everything we can to bring souls unto Him. We're not close to that or where we want to be, but we are working our hardest to get a little closer to that goal.

But before we begin on my week, you asked some questions!

I've tried a lot of those recipes that you gave me and I really appreciate them! I haven't been able to find shredded beef or corn tortillas here, though, so I haven't made tacos yet. But I'm also willing to try some new recipes as well! I also haven't seen Ældste Daw yet. He's actually and Iceland Elder so he's not even in Denmark! But he'll be coming to Elder Bednar here on Saturday so hopefully he brings it then!

Elder Bednar
We all are so excited to meet Elder Bednar on Saturday. He's given us all 3 talks that we need to study before we get there so you can already tell that he is going to be talking a bit on "Faith." We're excited to meet him!

As soon as we got Ældste Metcalf moved in last Monday the very first thing we started talking about was things we needed to change and do better in the zone. We've brainstormed a ton of new ideas that we're excited to try, and we are especially excited to be more involved with the members of our zone and their interests, needs, and concerns.

There have been 4 big things that we've done this past week to find more potentials and new investigators. We've seen a quite of bit of success from it. I'm sure we won't do exactly the same things this week, but we saw some miracles come out of them.

1. Work with the members.
2. Find effective finding activities for the morning hours
3. Previous Investigators/Potentials
4. Knocking from 3-5:00

Elder Metcalf and I have really put a focus on members this last week. We have had a lot of great experiences with many of them, but one of the many miracles was an opportunity to teach a members brother. Ældste Metcalf and I wanted to visit Lisa and Chris Perkins in our ward, but when we got there that evening they weren't home. We talked a little bit about our next destination, couldn't really decide on what we wanted to do next, and decided to just start biking. Right when we were leaving though, they came home! And not by themselves, but Lisa's non-member brother had just moved in to their apartment to live with them for the next few months. They invited us in, and after talking to them for a little bit Lisa asked if we could give the first lesson to her brother. It was a very spiritual lesson, and even though he has a lot of concerns about religion in general you could see a lot of the things we talked about really touched him. So that was a great example of members being there to help us find new investigators!
The whole Copenhagen, Denmark Mission

We're still trying to find really effective things to do in the mornings since nobody is really home, but we decided to go to the richest homes in our area and try to find au pairs that are taking care of the homes at that time. Most of them are from the Philippines, and therefore are very religious. We actually have found a few potentials from that and hope to set up appointments with those au pairs!

We found a new investigator this week from an old potential that was written in our records from 2011. She is a Filipino au pair. She was the first person that we tried our 15 minute lesson with and it turned out fantastic! The Spirit was strong and we were able to set up a follow up appointment very easily with her since we weren't taking up too much of her time. It really looks like these 15 minute lessons are going to help a lot.

A few months ago, President Sederholm said that in his son's mission they had to knock from the hours of 4-6 or something like that, I can't remember exactly when. But Ældste Metcalf and I decided to try a similar thing since we really needed new investigators. Every day this past week, when possible, we went and knocked from 3-5:00 since Danes tend to get off of work earlier. We've found quite a lot of potential investigators, made some follow up appointments, and also knocked into a Religion/English Teacher that wants us to come to her class and talk about religion! She just emailed us today and so we're going to set it up with her when we're going to come and do that, so we are really looking forward to a lot of these people the Lord has put in our way to find.

The Sisters' investigator was baptized this last Saturday. The Spirit was so strong and you could see the Sister Missionaries loved her so much and were so happy to finally see her baptized. Apparently there were some non-members that sound like they really want to learn more, so that will be fun to see where that leads. Right after the baptism we visited a less-active friend and he really opened up to us about religion and some of the obstacles that have keeping him from coming to church. We're going to get him some home-teachers because he said that would be nice. Hopefully we'll get him to church soon!

That's all I have time for this week! I'm apologizing now that I haven't taken any pictures this week...I'll take some for sure before next time! Remember that I love you and pray for you every day!

Med Kærlig Hilsen, [Love from]
-Ældste Wawro