Sunday, February 2, 2014

My first full week in Helsingborg!

 This has been my first full week in Helsingborg and it has been awesome!  Actually though, putting the cold, the wind, and the snow aside for a second, I love it here.  I can start by talking a little about Skåne.  Skåne is the bottom part of Sweden and has some unique cultures but definitely a unique dialect.  Skånska as it's called sounds a bit more like Danish.  When it's really thick it can be quite hard to understand or group together with Swedish as a language.  I think it sounds really cool though.  One of the crazy things about being here in Helsingborg is that we can see Denmark from the city.  So while walking around the city we can just look over the Oresund Strait and see Helsingförs, a short swim across the water.  Helsingförs is the Danish equivalent to Helsingborg, they are often called sister cities.  Because of the proximity to Denmark a lot of people even fly the Skånish flag.  A red based flag (Denmark) with the yellow cross of Sweden.  
   Helsingborg is an old city and the biggest that I have yet served in.  There is an old wall from the time Helsingborg was owned by Denmark that overlooks the entire city.  From here you can see out over Helsinborg and even see into Denmark.  Quite the view on a clear day.
   This last Sunday we had a family walk into church saying that they want to be married and learn about the church.  So it has not taken long for me to see miracles in Skåne.  Coming into this area was very interesting. There's a lot of work to be done but that is not within itself a bad thing.  Äldste Stafford and I are excited to be working together down here in Helsingborg.
   As far as the ward goes, I love them.  They have once again given me a testimony of the fact that this is the same church everywhere and is one big family.  Just as it is the same work everywhere.  It's different people, almost a different language but I still feel the same after coming home from a good day.  I feel empowered as I work.  I am very blessed to be a missionary.  This power which I know accompanies me is not, however, unique to missionaries.  It is the Holy Ghost which empowers us and communicates God's will to us.  A missionary is set apart to represent the Lord and preach the gospel.  This setting apart represents them receiving authority to go out as a missionary.  Power to teach comes from faith, vision, obedience, and diligence.  These four steps are also what will empower us to do whatsoever thing is right and ultimately succeed later in my life and career.  Even when it's hard or annoying I am glad when I do what is right to keep the Holy Ghost with me.

  Äldste Jonathan


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