Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Email #95

April 25, 2016
Skellefteå, Sweden

Well helllloooo family!

Wow... talk about a week. This week has absolutely FLOWN by and it's been another week in the vineyard helping people accept the Restored Gospel. It's some pretty good stuff you could say. Pretty good stuff? Nah... it's the GREATEST anyone could ask for! 

ANYWHO... Elder Kilton and I have had a LOT of time on the streets this week. We just walk up main street, and down main street, and up, and down, and talk to people alllll dayyyy looonggggg. It's a pretty good gig. We sifted through all of our investigators that we had and we came out with a grand total of prepared people that want to know if the church is true. It came out to a big fat ZERO. SO... are we going to get down about it? NO! Are we going to sit on our keisters all day? NO! ARE WE GOING TO FIND THE PREPARED PEOPLE? NO! OH... wait... wrong answer. YES! Dang straight! And as I would say to Scottie Tew after he aces a kid, "LET'S GO!" *insert side-bump here* SO... that's what our week has consisted of.  It may get hard but a mission is kind of like a night sky. It may seem dark, like really dark, BUT the bits and pieces of amazing experiences, the things we call "stars" can make it absolutely beautiful overall. That's kind of how I think about it. At the end, it's gonna be worth it. So keep on moving, keep on trucking, and the Lord will do miracles through you. The key is that you have to give him something to work with. 

SO... this week has been a lot of contacting! It started on Monday night and we met this super cool lady named Daphne. Turns out she's from Brazil but is studying here with her husband. (So that's a S/O to Brian and his Brazilians. P.S. Greg... I promise you all give you a S/O if I meet someone from Texas. Haha you know what? S/O to Greg for being a stud anyways! Love you buddy!) Anywho... we talk to her for a little bit, tell her about the Book of Mormon and she LOVED it. It's always my favorite thing when I can say, "This book, it talks about your ancestors. It talks about the people from America!" They always perk up and get a huge smile on their face. The coolest! We're going to meet up a little later with her and her husband so that'll be neat!

Later, we contacted.... wait for it.... ANOTHER BRAZILIAN! Can you believe it? We're in Sweden! 2 points for Gryffindor! Uhhh... I mean Brian and the Brazilians! Bernidito actually comes from Recife so that was super cool! We talked to him a little bit and he was pretty hard core Catholic and wouldn't listen, BUT... it was neat nonetheless.

OH... super fast... Elder Kilton's mom is actually from Alabama and so he claims the south as his roots. Haha SO... Noah, I might have some friends for you to meet down there. I didn't think I'd hear the words "ROLL TIDE" very much in Skellefteå, Sweden. BUT... Noah... for you... "Roll Tide baby! Roll!"

Later during the week of our "preaching to the masses", we contacted a man named Elias from Iran. We told him who we were and he said, "Hey... you guys want to go get a coffee?" Don't worry Mom, I didn't drink any coffee. But I did drink some Hot Chocolate. Mmmmm... OH... second of all... who in the Sam Hill ever says, "Hey you want to go do something because I met you 30 seconds ago?" Elias is the correct answer. "The Mormons. The Mormons is the correct answer." Turns out that Elias LOVES America and wants to move to L.A. to work at a car body shop, so he had some questions about the red, white, and blue, and then we taught him the Restoration. He came to church yesterday, and now we're going to teach him again this week. Super cool. While we were enjoying our hot chocolate, Elias had a buddy who said hi to him so we said hi to. Good thing I still remember a couple phrases in Persian. I pulled out the Persian on this dude and he just BUSTED up laughing and said, "How in the Sam Hill can you speak Persian?" ... Alright... he didn't say it like that, but you get the picture. This guy, Samire, wants to learn better English so we're going to teach him the Gospel in English and see if it doesn't go anywhere. Potential investigators on potential investigators on potential investigators. In Sweden, we call them "T-U's." SO.. that was a sweet experience! Elias is a STUD!

On Thursday, I went back home to the blessed land of UMEÅ! The boys are back in town! We had Zone Training and it was so cool! Elder Bailey and Elder Luke are my Zone Leaders and they gave a super good training. It was weird because the last time I wasn't giving the training, I was in Skellefteå, so I had a little Déjà vu moment. haha after the training, I asked Elder Bailey for a blessing for counsel and help during this last transfer. Two things from the blessing hit me really hard. I was told that Christ would walk beside me as I did his work, and that right now is the most important part of my mission. After that second part, I was a little surprised but it was a re-confirmation that you have to go to the end. I'm trying my hardest. We're working hard and we're trying to find those people that are ready. 

After this week, it was just a big confirmation for me that this really is The Church of Jesus Christ. I wouldn't waste two years of my life trying to learn a new language, being away from my dear family, and wasting the prime of my life on a fairy-tale. It's true. And the more I work in the Lord's vineyard, the stronger that reality becomes. It's true. It's all true. And I want to thank you all for supporting me here while I've been here in Sweden for these two years. It's been remarkable. It's been amazing. I don't think I could have said that at the beginning, but I know it now. I know it. And I love it. 

I hope you all have such a stellar week! Elder Featherstone is cheering you all on from this side. I love you all!

Strength and Honor

Elder Caleb Hendrik Featherstone

The classic Elder Featherstone pose
            Skellefteå sandwich selfie!!

This is my boy Elias that we contacted!

Skellefteå Äldster unite!

What happens when Skellefteå is playing Frölunda in the Swedish Ice-hockey Final. This is "main street" in Skellefteå.

Having a "fika" with one of our käre medlemmar Ulla!

Haha being goofy with Elder Bailey. haha love this kid.

                              The Norrland ZONE!

Norrland Zone round 2

                    Check out this Norrland beaut.

                           After a long day of work...

The famous "Moröbacke Mirror" that we always take selfies in! haha

The Utby boys reunite! This is Elder Bailey. STUD!

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