Monday, February 23, 2015

I Finished a Journal

Heyo Palios!

Where has this transfer gone?? We get transfer calls this following Sunday, and it is crazzyyy. Ha I'm a real missionary now; time is just goin.

This week! Happy week! Lotsa lessons fell through, soo that is Always just bummy. But! Our hours were still good and we still had great times.

Miracle of the Week: We were knockin some doors, I wasn't really feeling it, so I was kinda moseying about the neighborhood, naming all the cats (they have buckets of cats in IJmuiden) when all of a sudden, Goody, Snow Stick (a cat that is the color of snow and sticks; he's a pal), and I found ourselves in a house! A lovely middle-aged woman let us in from the windy wind and we got to talk about our favorite thing: God :) It was emotional for her, as we told her that God is a man (she wasn't fond of the idea) but she listened intently to the story of Joseph Smith and the Restoration, and said that it would make sense to get baptized if these things were true. Wabam, RAD dropped! And when her 16-year old daughter walked in to find her mother talking to 2 weird darling young girls...haha she actually ended up thinking that we are the coolest thing ever, learning Dutch and walking around talking to people for a year and a half, and she wants us to come back sometime. Good times, good times.

Happy Thought of the Week: Two days later, on this same street, we were finishing out the doors on the street and these two adorable 6-year old girls asked what we were doing. We told them that we were telling people about God. And they said they believed in God too! (though one's parents had just said they didn't...) So they told us about being best friends and living in IJmuiden and breaking their arm and sang us a song about la la :) And then they decided we should get back to work, and that they better come with us. So they would run ahead, flip the mail flap (that's how they would "knock" the door) and run behind us until we were done, then run to the next door and do the same thing. We became tracting buddies, and it made me oh so happy. :) I'll bet they will Always remember tracting with the missionaries.

Spring is coming! I see tulip buds! Ah Holland. I finished my first mission journal this week and hit 5 months. Mm being a missionary is good. Love to you all back in 'Merica!


Zuster Johanson

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Mission Life

Whelp, pretty normal week here in IJmuiden. Goody and I reached our proselyting hour goal, so that was great! We are just happy and like having fun conversations with people and being our little selves.
For Valentines, us and the Haarlem elders made dinner for our friend Kim. It was great! I will never get to have a Valentines Day like that again.
Yesterday, Goody played "This is the Christ" and I gave a testimony (was supposed to be a talk, they told me to cut it down to testimony; second time that I haven't given this talk I've written now). It was a good meeting. I think they need more musical numbers here. We are going to work on that.
Time is going by super fast every day, so that's crazy and maybe also nice.
Our zone went ice skating today! Haha we were all such funny Americans. I never even fell down!
The work is coming, and it's awesome. Sometimes crazy things work out in ways you never expect, and if you put the work in, you Always see more miracles.
Merry week to you all and to all a good day!


Zuster Johanson

Monday, February 9, 2015

Loves to Everyone

Hey Friends,

Guess what. Sometimes people let you in, too! This week, Sister Goodman and I got really excited about getting more proselyting hours. We were so enthused, that we jumped outside and went to contact out a neighborhood before our appointment that night. Well, then our appointment fell through. So we were looking at an extra two hours of contacting time, and it was not a warm day. But yay, we love to contact! So we were about to finish out a street, and then we knocked on the door of this lovely elderly woman. As we talked, she had much to share about faith and our conversation became lengthy. Then she asked, 'Would you like to come in? You can hang your coats up and come sit down." Wowie! Zingers! Crazy stuff! She told us  many many many stories, but in between her breaths, we crammed in the Restoration, and it was awesome. She's not sure about the Book of Mormon, but maybe she'll get curious and read it anyway. But, if our appointment had never fallen through, we never would have found her. God is so smart.

I have a good story to share with you. We had dinner at Sister Reijpert's the other night, and I asked about her conversion story: When she was in her 20's, she was staying with a friend and one day, the missionaries came to the door. When Sister Reijpert asked who it was, her friend told her that it was two young men, wearing long coats and hats. Well, and who were they? "De Mormonen! Laat hun niet binnen, hoor! Ze brengen de duivel aan je thuis and dansen op de tafel!" (The Mormons! Don't let them in! They bring the devil in your house and dance on your table!) Sister Reipert heard a little voice in her say, "Don't believe that. It's not true." (phew, one more point for the Spirit!)
  A couple weeks/months later, her father told her that two young men had come to their door. They were wearing long coats and hats, and they were from the Mormon church. Sister Reipert couldn't believe it! She asked, "En hebben ze op de tafel gedansd?" (And did they dance on the table??) Her father thought she was crazy. In the end, they were baptized. Yay for missionaries! Hahaha I just thought that was a great Mormon missionary story to add to the rumors we hear bout us.

Happy Valentimes this week! Hope you all experience lots of love, particularly from Heavenly Father, and share it with everyone around you. I love you!


Zuster Johanson

First day together! Squinty faces!

Christmas morning! And don't I look it..

Our Christmas breakfast cake hahaha (no cupcake pans)

Christmas in Belgium

Monday, February 2, 2015

Have Faith

Dear Pals,

Well, it keeps looking up here in IJmuiden as Sister Goodman and I have one spiritual experience after another. Here's a quick update on our people:

   M.: She's a member, and she's super cool, and we just gotta get her back to church!
   C.: She accepted the invitation to be baptized! Sister Adams (my sister training leader) and I taught her and M. the Restoration, and it went fantastically. She's looking really positive.
   J.: We taught her about the sabbath day, haha and she absolutely loves the idea of a day where you just do nothing! Still haven't got her church though, so hopefully this week.
    E.: Didn't have a lesson this week; fell through.
    L.: Still looking for her!!!

We spent a lot of time with members this week, which I think will actually really help with the missionary work. If we can just get the members here to have faith in the potential of the Church here and believe that miracles can really happen, even in the Netherlands, I think the growth will be excellently exponential. They are such good people and so dedicated to the Lord, they just need to exercise their faith so that they can see the amazing results of it.

Funny moment of the week: Goodman and I were out street contacting one night, and we stopped these two young men and asked them why they think we're here on earth. The reply of the first: "To party!!" Haha so I asked what he thinks happens after this life. "Continue with the partying!" Ah the young Dutch generation. :) But then we had an awesome conversation and it was probably one of my favorite contacts yet! Ah so fun being a missionary.

Yay February! Happy Groundhog Day! I hope spring is coming very very soon. Love you all!


Zuster Johanson

Elder Silva (with cookie), Crowson (in back), Wombeldorf (new district leader), Nielsen (old district leader), Reynolds (old district leader), Bonney (zone leader), Shaw (Haarlem with us), Hunter, Price, Goody Goodman and I, and Elder Pouwer (old zone leader)