The stories behind the tagline are really the only exciting things that happened this last week. Being able to meet with our now recent convert is really the brightness that keeps us trekking on through the rain and snow (yes, we had a lot of snow this week).
I can't even recall all of the ways in which I've been impressed by this guy. He fellowships investigators the moment he sees them, tries his best to reactivate people that are in our area, wants really badly to do missionary work with us, and a whole lot of other stuff.
Just yesterday, we had a lesson with him. At the end of it, he asked when he could come out with us this week. So, since this whole week is filled with being in Helsinki due to Zone Conference and MLC for my companion, we asked him to come with us out on Saturday, in the evening. He asked how long he was allowed to stay with us. We stared at him. He said his entire day was free. We said we could visit an investigator and perhaps a less active. He asked how long that would take. We said perhaps an hour, at most, for 2 20-30 minute lessons. He asked what more we could do. We suggested another less active and a few potentials we could drop by, taking another hour. He said sure, and as I blocked in 2 hours time with him into our schedule, he said, "Oh, by the way, we should meet an hour earlier-" (I thought he was then going to say "for a lesson to me" or "for dinner". He then finished the sentence,) "-for contacting on the streets." We were floored. No, we did not rope him into 12+ hours of missionary work, but he kept asking for more. He's totally awesome. My companion was trying not to cry when the recent convert then bore testimony on how important it is to get used to it before his own mission, which he has made tons of sacrifices already to make possible. He's just unstoppable.
Well, yup. That's what makes Porvoo worth it. Not too many people want to meet with us anymore, but with that mighty testimony of a Recent Convert, how can we help but feel more encouraged to do our responsibility and fulfill our purpose as missionaries?
Onto the questions.
Have you walked on water lately?
Ahh, no. All of the ice is still around on the lakes, but the river is all broken up and flowing, so I don't dare venture out onto the ice on the lakes, snow or no. But thanks for checking up on keeping me sane! If I was wandering out now, you'd probably end up with a Vanhin-sicle. (I love when he makes up words! ~Mom)
Have you met anyone new in Porvoo?
We do have a few new people we've met. None of them are investigators yet, due to them being female and us not being able to yet set up solid lessons with them and a male member, but they have copies of the Book of Mormon and are reading from it, so we'll see! They are remarkably all in the same building complex. Out of the 4 or so that we tried in that area to tract out, all of the potentials lived in the same one. Weird... But convenient!
Did you get to teach anyone this week?
Just really our recent convert. With the lack of progression that we have had with our existing investigators (mostly due to them dodging lessons) we have decided to wipe the slate almost entirely clean and focus, as has been our focus for weeks, on Finding. We are hoping that our Recent Convert can aid us in this, too.
Did you learn something new this week?
I think most of my learning was focused around our recent convert and his experiences that are helping his testimony grow even bigger. He has been seeing a ton of blessings. I don't want to get too into his personal life, so I'm not going to share those, but I think the overall thing that I have had impressed into me this week is that the Lord doesn't expect us to just go out and "convince" people that He is there without any of His aid. He has placed people in situations in their lives so that they are actively searching for Him, and it is our job to Find them, to the best of our ability, so that they can start to define what it is that they are searching for by coming closer to our Heavenly Father. The testimonies of those that have searched for answers and found them within the Gospel are fantastically strong, and I am so blessed to be able to see just how much it can mean to someone who has been growing that desire for so long.
What opportunities do you have to do service in Porvoo?
It seems that all of the service opportunities that we have had in Porvoo have come, one way or another, through a member. We semi-often are helping people with English corrections in papers they have, or sites they are making. It's kind of interesting to be in charge of editing stuff for Finns. I know far too much about different opinions of people when it comes to Global Warming and IPCC's claims now... We also are tasked with bringing the Sacrament to a less-active woman that can't leave her house, but that's a really fun thing to do, so I don't see it as a burden at all. I don't think there's been too much else in the way of service that we can do in Porvoo, we actually asked our recent convert once if there was any sort of volunteering facility and the only thing he could think of was construction-related, and that's kind of a no-go when the construction is with GIANT telephone poles and buzzing electricity.
Well, that's it for this week. It's getting pretty slow, so here's to hope that it'll pick up soon! Be safe, everyone!
Vanhin David Milligan
No filters, I promise! Sunsets are beautiful.