Monday, November 30, 2015


Dear Fam,

It's been a crazy week of goodbyes and hellos. I arrived here safe and sound in Bergen on Friday, but before I get there...

Monday we threw together a mission turkey bowl! We got Oslo, Drammen, and Sandvika districts together and it was awesome. A frozen field and a bunch of Americans made for a pretty good memory. It's funny cause I did the exact same thing a year ago when I was serving in Kongsberg! 

We were able to meet up with a lot of members and investigators before I left. It's made me realize how close I've come to a lot of the people in Sandvika. Tuesday was especially memorable. We had two teaches set up with investigators that we were going to be teaching for the second time. The two lessons were back to back and we felt strongly that we needed to commit both of them to Baptism. One of them was a 18 year old Norwegian/Canadian hockey player and the other was a 25ish year old woman from Liberia (Yes, she knows B!). Both teaches went as smooth as we could have imagined. We taught to needs, read with them from the book of Mormon, and when the spirit was strong we committed them both to be baptized on a specific date! And...they both said yes! It was an especially cool experience with the 18 year-old because as we were teaching him at a table in the library there was a group of teenagers sitting in the background goofing off and being inappropriate. It was such a clear contrast of two different lives and it was impressive to see a young person searching for truth and answers. 

On Wednesday we had dinner with the member from Minnesota! She's the one we've done a lot of service for (pulling out roots, etc.) and it was cool to visit her and eat some WILD RICE SOUP! Didn't realize how Minnesotan that stuff is. 

We had a thanksgiving meal on Thursday with the Hills and a bunch of other missionaries. Super koselig. That evening I said a final goodbye to B. and the fam! Ate another dinner with the whole fam, bore some testimony, sang "God be with you till we meet again." It was tear-jerking and tough to say goodbye, but it was cool to reflect on all the miracles that have happened the last several months since I found him on the street that one day. I don't know what I did or what he did to lead to all these events, but I KNOW that the Holy Ghost was involved and that I know that because I have experienced hat is described in D&C 50: 22 Wherefore, he that preacheth and he that receiveth, understand one another, and both are edified and rejoiceth together.
And to add to the sweetness, I got a call this morning that after 3 months of searching they finally recovered Benjamin's membership record number! Let's just say I started running circles around the church when Rolfson gave me the call. 

And then Bergen happened! Friday morning I headed over and joined up with my new comp Elder Osguthorpe! We've got another two elders living in our apartment: Elder Bleggi and Elder Sanchez! All three have been out less than 3 transfers making me older than all of them combined! Young missionaries are the best missionaries to be around, though, so I am way excited to be with them! There are two other elders and two sisters in the district as well. I feel so much energy, excitement, and potential in this city!!

Other things about Bergen. Bergen is the city of rain. It's been raining non stop since I've been here and I've already broke an umbrella! The ward is pretty big and eclectic like Oslo. Excited to work with a lot of less actives and to find investigators on investigators!

We've got two way cool investigators that we are working with right now. M., an incredibly prepared young Norwegian that was recently found. He keeps every committment about 4 times and keeps saying "I just want to be a good Mormon!" And we've got this other cool guy from Uganda named S. He loves the message and loves to jam out to Nearer my God to Thee with me on the piano :)

I've never felt more passion and excitement towards missionary work than I do now! There is nothing more important, nothing more meaningful, and nothing more satisfying. 

Wi gon si next week! 

Eldste Parkinson

Sandvika District

Lysfesten - They have a big Christmas tree lighting and firework show in Bergen!