Sept 27, 2015
Spreadin' the good word
HEJ HEJ!! Yep... those four words up there is the recap of this past week. It's probably a solid recap of my past year or so in this country. I love Sweden so much. It's the best. The Scandinavian Spectacular. The Big Kahuna. The "The Great Bambino! Babe RUTH!" Alright... Sandlot has nothing to do with this email. That's just where I felt like that paragraph was going.
This week has been a really solid one. I would rank it as the second most busy week of Elder Featherstone's two year journey in Sweden, and the #1 most stressful week of Elder Featherstone's life as a human being. We have had SO MUCH TO DO! My mind is still going 1000 miles per hour. BUT... we all made it through with smiles on our faces... so that's all that matters.
Well.. the week started out with more teaching and then a flight down to Stockholm for the Mission Leadership Conference at the mission home. It went super well and I learned a ton! The Assistants, Elder Rasmussen and Sahlin, gave a stellar training on how we should work through our Ward Mission Leader and what we can do to help the members catch the wave of missionary work here in Sweden. They shared a quote from President Monson that I loved! President Monson said, "There is only one thing more contagious than enthusiasm, and that is the lack of enthusiasm." Getting excited, pumped, stoked, and whatever else for missionary work actually WORKS! It's so amazing how much just a smile can do when you're talking to someone. I remember a little while ago, I contacted a man on the street and I was just trying to be as pumped for missionary work as possible. I said, "hey, excuse me." and then ended up talking to him for a second. I remember I had a smile on my face from ear to ear and was trying to get him pumped for it. He ended up saying no... (sadly) but I remember his face and it cracked me up! If I were to put a caption on his face... or what he was thinking... it would be, "What is this tall skinny kid doing talking to me right now. And what's with that smile?" He smiled back and said "no thanks" but it was a neat experience because I got him to crack a smile and could see how contagious enthusiasm actually is.
Anyway... the Assistants talked about member-missionary work and I was eating it up! Honestly, I don't think I've ever seen a ward work so well with missionaries in my life than right here in Umeå. The members here are the BEST!!! S/O to the Umeå branch in Norrland! I learned a ton from the Assistants, and Elder Dahle and I have already seen what we took from MLC applied in the work up here.
Later in the week, I was a part of one of the neatest lessons of my mission so far. It was actually with a man that Elder Rasmussen and I contacted while we were on splits a few weeks ago. We contacted Betrand a few weeks ago and we were able to get his number. He said we could meet sometime so we finally set up a time to meet. On Wednesday, we drove to the church and Betrand was already there waiting for us. I hopped out of the car, walked over, gave him a bro-hug, and then we went into the church. Betrand is from Cameroon but has lived in Sweden for about five years. He's in his twenties and is such a STUD! We sat down with him, got to know him a little bit, and then we started teaching him about the Restoration. We talked about Prophets, Joseph Smith, and then about the Book of Mormon. The Spirit was so strong and Elder Dahle and I bore our testimonies of the Book of Mormon. It was absolutely amazing! I finished bearing my testimony and then it got a little quiet. Betrand had the Book of Mormon in his hand, looked down at it for a bit, looked back up at us and said, "is it okay if I take this book?" I laughed and said, "It's all yours bud!" He was so pumped about it and he committed to read and pray about it. One of the coolest lessons ever! With one of the coolest guys ever! I'm really praying because Betrand has AMAZING potential! He's such a stud! I'll give you the update with him next week!
On Friday, we had a less active member in the ward named Niels that was in the hospital. We went over and visited him and everything seemed to be going alright. He was just back into emergency surgery a couple hours ago because of a tumor he had. I think that is the first time I had been in a hospital since I've been on my mission and there is just a different spirit there. Very sweet, somber spirit. Just keep Niels in your prayers.
I love being here in Umeå! The work is absolutely amazing and I'm lovin' it!
OH... hats off to the Utes for putting on a show against Oregon. Heard all about it.
Well... that's about it for the week! Hope you all have a killer week! Go show 'em how it's done! I love you all!
Strength and Honor
Elder Caleb Hendrik Featherstone