The emails, pictures, stories, and adventures of Sisar Kathryn Crandall in Helsinki, Finland
Monday, November 24, 2014
Well hello there everyone! This week has been a great one, as usual. Quickly I'll run you through some updates on what's going on.
H is still progressing towards baptism on the 20th of dec. She's our only investigator with a baptismal date at the moment, but we'll change that this week :) I want to Lahti! The sisters there are amazing! I was with Sisar Owen and we had a great time. It was my first time in Lahti too so it was pretty fun to be able to see some of the city. Sister Dixon was with Sisar Rochette and they just rocked it as well! Really the sisters here are great.
Friday we helped out at a murder mystery party the young men and young women invited us too. Saturday we taught a class at the stake youth activity all about Preach the Gospel and how to apply it into our pre-missionary lives too. Yesterday was stake conference and so many talks were about the joy the gospel brings and being happy and becoming better. And recently I've been overwhelmed by the love and support I feel and also by the gratitude I feel for everything the Lord has blessed me with. So I wanted to let you all know what I'm thankful for this week especially.
I'm grateful for...
- The winter weather :) it sure makes me appreciate the summer!
- The 3 hours of sunlight. I could be serving up in Rovaniemi with 0 hours so I'll take what I can get
- Sisar Dixon and I's adventures lost in the woods. We found a new investigator and now I know the city a little better!
- The hour of personal study I get each day. That time has become so precious to me as a time to refuel and re-energize for a day of spreading the gospel.
- The members who are always more than willing to feed us. Came in handy this week when we were stuck at the church for a couple hours and the members come to the rescue.
- A living prophet who helps us know what is right and is always there is comfort us with the word of God. I've enjoyed reading the general conference talks this week and I can't help but think how much more President Monson and all the apostles have to give us, if only we were ready!
- The Plan of Salvation. I've so grateful that we have a way to overcome both physical and spiritual death and that we know about it! We ended up teaching this lesson multiple times this week and every time just increased my testimony of it and my gratitude that I have knowledge of this plan and the comfort it gives me.
- The Book of Mormon. No matter what else happens in my life or on my mission I'm grateful for the Book of Mormon and the keystone it is in my life and in my testimony. I've had lots of questions came up (my own and also from my investigators) and I know I can always bank on the book of mormon to help us out.
- Finnish! I LOVE this language so much. I'm grateful that I've had the chance to learn it and how much it's helped me learn about the Finnish culture.
- Finns who always help us with the language. A Finn may not want to talk to me on the bus, but I'm grateful for the many people who answered my language questions this week and helped me learn some new words although they weren't interested in anything else.
- Cold runs in the morning that always wake me up and start my day off right!
- And on that note... hot showers! And that I'm able to live in such a blessed place as Finland and enjoy the blessings of hot, running water.
- The American peanut butter I found from Prisma that keeps me going :)
- Church music on Sunday to direct my thoughts and keep me focused on my purpose.
- Preach my Gospel. I've started studying it all the way through again this week and there are so many scriptures and quotes and things I've somehow missed! So I'm grateful for this guide to help us in our work and also to help me as a member when I'm home.
- My Mission President and his Wife. President and Sisar Watson were here in Tampere this week. I was also to have an interview with him and talk with her for a little bit as well. They truly are inspired people who answered a lot of my questions and helped me with some concerns as well. They gave great advice that I'm now able to apply in my mission and in my life. Thanks :)
- The temple. I have the opportunity to go to the temple this week on Friday and I never realized how great of a blessing it is and how it truly is the Lord's House until I wasn't able to go. I'll never take that blessing for granted again.
- All of my amazing companions who still continue to help me and reach out and love me even though they're in different cities and even countries.
- All the sisters here in Finland. I've had the chance to go on exchanges with a lot of them (This week it was the Lahti sisters) and they've all taught me so much. I feel like I've had 30 companions! And I just love them all and I'm grateful they all made the decision to come out here and serve a mission so I could meet them.
- Train rides that allow me to see the beautiful Finnish countryside.
- My siblings who eagerly email me each week with pictures and stories and funny quotes and more. I love you all :)
- My dad who sends me hallmark cards with hugs in them just to let me know he loves me.
- My mom who constantly uplifts and supports me with spiritual insights and helps me learn and grow every day.
- My Savior and brother Jesus Christ who supports me in all that I do. He makes it possible for me to even be out here or for me to even be alive. I'm so thankful I'm a part of his work and I hope to keep it up the rest of my life.
As I've pondered all the things I'm grateful for, i've realized how small and insignificant I am in the grand scheme of things. But I'm also realized how important I am to the Lord that he's even taken the time to bless me with all of this and more.
One scripture comes to mind specifically.
13 Wherefore, I call upon the weak things of the world, those who are unlearned and despised, to thresh the nations by the power of my Spirit;
I am definitely one of "the weak things of the world". Especially out here in a foreign country with my broken Finnish. So I guess that makes me "unlearned and despised" as well. But still, somehow, the Lord is able to use me and my companion and my fellow missionaries to do his work in all the nations by the power of his spirit. How cool is that :)
I love you all! This week will be a great one with a trip to Helsinki on Friday (Also someone's birthday...) And a Thanksgiving dinner with an american family on Saturday! I'll let you know about all the amazing miracles next week!
Sorry no pictures this week except for one from the murder mystery party. Finns are so funny when they act :) Mom here: I can't post pictures of the Finns . . . sorry.
So, here's a picture of the sisters that will be Kathryn's roomies this winter. I love it!