I made a list, this week, of stuff to talk about! It's rather short, though...
One thing I said I need to do is attach 2 pictures. Here's hoping that the library computers don't delete everything I own after connecting. The pictures have already been chosen, I just need to send them off after explaining them in their proper places. For example:
This last P-Day, I found a fantastic little toy. This thing is a 3-in-1 deal - a pen, pointer, and laser pointer, all in one little contraption. Of course, I don't have it extended all the way, here - it's really hard to write, too, when it is on the end of the extended pointer! But when it's all compact, it works very well. Yay for point-less things - or should I say it's pointful? It has 2 ways to do it...
Okay, we'll stop with the weird word-plays.
We also got to go to Kuopio this last week. We attended their District Meeting, which was really fun. It was cool to get to hear a Finnish person in a District Meeting again - especially when we started going over the Language Point. It was a simple topic - question words - but it still had things to be learned from. This is why no missionary here ever truly masters the language...
We had a meeting with our Branch Presidency, in which they gave us lots of information about members, less-active members, and part-member families to go visit, now that we have this car fully functional in this area. It was great! The following Sunday, none of them were present - and neither was the Elder's Quorum President! We were one step away from having to lead the meeting... too close for comfort! Thankfully, the Branch President called people and arranged things to work out. We did have 2 nonmembers in church, though, and my companion gave a good talk about the importance of missionary work. That was fun, and now we are starting to meet these nonmembers more regularly!
Okay, having briefly gone over the questions, I have determined that I have nothing else to write of my own creativity. Oh, well. To the Q's!
What did you teach this week?
This week, I had a fun little origami-utilizing lesson. I had made a few Butterfly-Balls, the things that break apart into lots of little pieces of paper, and my companion and I came up with a way to make a fun little lesson for the kids in the family we were teaching. We wrote little points on the pieces of paper that we felt were basic elements in a testimony, like, "I have a loving Heavenly Father", and "My family can be together forever". When we walked in with this little paper ball, the kids just were staring at it, trying to guess what it was. The lesson started working even before the lesson started... After many guesses, I said that it was a testimony. They stared. I don't think they'd ever actually seen a testimony. Neither had I, but this was a good opportunity. I threw the ball in the air, whacked it, and all of the different pieces came out. They thought it was really cool. The lesson was then about the parts of the gospel that all work together and how important it is that we have a testimony. After that lesson, they all wanted one - which was a bit of a problem, 'cuz I only had the one... Return-appointment! 😜😊
What did you share this week?
This week, Elder Hyer and I started to call different District Leaders in our Zone every night (as in, we call one Monday and Thursday, another Tuesday and Friday, and the other Wednesday and Saturday, with call-ins on Sunday for everyone). It was fun to follow-up on some different commitments given, see how the district itself was doing, and then aid in what ways we could to current questions and concerns. I guess that's a mixture of sharing time and advice, and trying to do my best not just to administer, but to minister. That's a fun little study topic right there, if anyone is interested...
What did you learn this week?
Hmm, I think the majority of my Personal Studies this week were oriented towards the upcoming Zone Training that we are having here. We need to talk about teaching the commandments and working with members. It's been great to get ideas from the district members about this - what Elder Hyer and I did, in an attempt to address things that our Zone actually wanted to talk about / needed help on, was got them all to submit questions they have and topics they want to contribute to if they come up. We found that almost all of the questions that groups had were also points that other district members wanted to talk about to give ideas - so that worked well! We also have had the opportunity to rely on 2 sets of Sister Training Leaders for this meeting. The Sister Training Leaders in Oulu normally stay in contact and conduct exchanges with the 2 sets of Sisters in this Zone, but President just changed that to make conducting splits take less travel. We now have the Helsinki Sister Trainers over one set and the Oulu Sister Training Leaders over the other. Wow. Lots of advice and opinions to fit into one meeting... It'll all work out. I hope.
Do you have snow, yet?
Yay! Just when all of the slush went away, it started to snow. Perfect timing - I didn't want the snow to just add to the wet. It's been great to walk in a winter-wonderland again.
How have you been feeling?
Mostly good - I feel sometimes that I have this prolonged feverish-temperature, but I think it's just me getting dehydrated sometimes. We, as a companionship, are trying to drink a LOT of water now. We have a high-tech scale in our bedroom that can measure things like % of body fat, water, and muscle by sending an electronic pulse through you. Tingly. I'm doing great: 5% body fat, near-on 69% water, and 51% muscle. I think that's 125% altogether... Just kidding, I understand how this works! By the way - I had written it like "I'm doing great - 5% body fat" with the hyphen like I normally do, but then I realized that it looked like I had -5% body fat... Hmm...
What is your favorite memory from your time in Finland so far?
Well, I'm pretty certain that I've shared these things before... I have 2 favorite memories here, but I think that I will hold those back unless I have permission from people. They heavily involve 2 of the converts that I've had out here in Finland. They are awesome people, and the moments when they have chosen to accept the gospel and act upon it in different ways in their lives have been truly astounding and awesome. Besides those two, though, I think my next favorite memory is of when I had all of my 2015 companions with me for the change of the New Year! That was really cool! I hope that you all got to see the picture of that. (Here it is again for those who missed it! ~Mom)
Well, that's the end. I'm not too interesting, I guess... But! I'll keep on shouting into the wind through these emails until someone tells me to stop! 😜
Thanks for all that you all do, in your own little parts of the world. I often say this, I feel - but it seriously is great to see the good people do! Be safe, all - you're all needed by someone, and they need you safe and happy.
Vanhin David Milligan