Monday, November 21, 2011

England Fog

Dear Family,

Here are the answers to your questions.

Question #1: What are the scriptures you are memorizing during breakfast?

I am memorizing the scriptures on our England London Mission scripture memorization card. They come from the five lessons in Preach My Gospel. One of my favorites is 2 Nephi 2:6-8 which I was able to recite in a lesson yesterday.

Question #2: What took Elder Mahendran's parents to Germany and what is their conversion story?

Elder Mahendran's parents moved to Germany 20 years ago, so Elder Mahendran was born and raised in Germany. I think his parents wanted a better life for the kids. When he was 12 his family met two sister missionaries and were later baptized. They felt something missing in their Hindu faith and the gap was filled by this message. His parents especially love the focus on families.

Question #3: Did Elder Mahendran already know English or did he learn it at the MTC?

He knew it pretty well before. He went to the Preston MTC for just 3 weeks. Sometimes he struggles when people talk fast or have weird accents. But hey, so do I sometimes. It doesn't even seem like English.

Heidi, well, I guess a girl is OK. Haha. No, that is great. I am excited to see her in a couple years. I'm sure you're not allowed to send missionaries nudity pictures. Haha. Looks like all the cousins near Marty's age will be girls. Haha. Tell Abby her uncle Elder Larsen loves her.

For the first time we are seeing some of this England fog I was told about. Yesterday we walked 5+ miles to church since our bikes were stolen last week. We are yet to hear from President Patch if we need to buy new bikes or not. We had them outside locked to a gate and I guess someone cut the lock and ran off with them. It helps you realize how hard it can be for some people to get to church. It took about an hour and 20 minutes.

Here in England there is no celebration of Thanksgiving. I haven't even heard it mentioned. Ever since Halloween people started talking about Christmas. I'm always sitting there thinking, "Wow, Christmas is 2 months away." Haha. They always ask me if I'm excited for Christmas and I'm always saying, "Haven't even thought about it yet."

Derron is the name of the guy who tried to save us from the drunk man, that is also a bit of an alcoholic. He now has a baptismal date for the 30th of December, but it will take lots of work. In our appointments I can smell the alcohol on his breath. He already has a small testimony of the Gospel because of his experience with the Book of Mormon. We will hopefully meet him today and help him to progress and get him sober.

This week I have learned very much about how the Great Apostasy was starting while the Apostles were still here. In Paul's epistles you can see the people are going astray already. I know that if we can just find someone elect and willing to listen with an open heart that they will see the need for the Restoration and the truth of it. My favorite part of teaching is to explain the Apostasy and then follow with the First Vision. The Spirit is almost uncomfortably strong when we recite the First Vision in the words of Joseph Smith.

I have always seen in my life that I don't understand everything, but as I study, every principle begins to make more and more sense.

I love having all my time devoted to this work. There is nothing more fulfilling and nothing that could help me grow more. I am thankful for my family, the gospel, and most of all, for the life of Jesus Christ.

I love you all,

Elder Larsen

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