Mission Map

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Finland Finally!!

President and Sister Rawlings and Vahnin Wilson

Brother and Sister Wilson,
Greetings from the great land of Finland.  This picture was taken at the mission home the night your son arrived in Finland.  We met your son yesterday, which was a great blessing for us.  We are very happy that they all arrived safely.  We are excited to have new missionaries.  They always bring a special spirit to the mission. This is a group of well-prepared missionaries who will see much success.

Hey mom and dad!! It is currently 845 PM and I am sitting with everyone in the mission home! We landed in Helsinki around 3 this afternoon, got to speak to real Finns on the plane and it is so awesome! President Rawlings and the APs picked us up from the airport and took us right to the Temple grounds. It was so beautiful! The temple is so much bigger and more beautiful in person. Then we came back here to the mission home and sister Rawlings made us all a dinner and we had interviews with President Rawlings. We are all going to shower and go to sleep, tomorrow we have a little orientation in the morning then get assigned our first areas! President just wanted us to send a quick email to let you know we are here safe and sound! Everything is great and Finland is absolutely beautiful! I love you! I will email you on Monday!

Friday, October 11, 2013

Week 6 & 7

Heading to Finland in 10 more days!!
Ran in to my Cousin Dakota in the MTC!! 
Ok we go to Finland in 11 days!!! I can't even describe how excited I am! Well this week has been fantastic! I had so many cool opportunities but I'll start with conference. Conference was incredible! Our teachers promised us that watching conference in the MTC is the best way to experience it and they were absolutely right. I felt like the entire conference was so applicable and beneficial to missionary work and I am so grateful that the church has been pushing for more member missionary work because that's how pretty much all of the work is done in Finland. I absolutely loved all of the talks but a few that stuck out to me were President Monson's Sunday morning and Dieter F Uchtdorf's Saturday morning. President Monson's poem about how strong wind creates stronger trees was just perfect and while he gave that talk I felt my testimony of him and his divine calling as a prophet grow exponentially. I received a powerful witness that he truly is God's chosen prophet on the earth today and I am just so grateful for all of the authorities of the church that we have to follow. I took a few specific questions to conference that I wanted to receive answers to and I literally received tons of answers during the very first two talks!

 I also got to see Dakota a lot during Conference weekend because we all walked up to the main campus to watch it all so it was just so much fun!! I feel like Cody was really excited to get out to Iowa and I'm so happy for him. We also had the chance to spend a lot of time with Vanhin Vormo which is always awesome because we get to here some real Finnish but we met another Finnish sister as well so it was sweet! But then the Finnish sister and Vanhin Vormo started talking to each other and all of our faces just went blank because we couldn't understand ANYTHING they were saying hahaha so then the finnish sister turned to me and said "Puhummeko nopeasti?" (Do we speak fast?) and I just said "kyllä, tosi nopeasti" (yes, very fast) hahaha but they said we were doing a great job and I feel like the more I just try to speak and practice my finnish the more I learn. So then on Monday I had a chance to help give a blessing to a sister in our district because she's been really sick and she has to have some test run at the hospital today so she asked Vanhin Hugie (because he's the district leader) if we could give her a blessing so that was a great experience. I annointed and Vanhin Hugie blessed. Blessings are always really powerful ways to feel the spirit and it is always equally as awesome for the people giving it as the person receiving it. Well then yesterday we had the chance to be new missionary hosts!!! It was so much fun because we got to actually interact with people rather than sit in our classroom all day like usual haha So basically all the missionaries that get sent down here to west campus come in on buses and they hop off and we just grab one and help them with their luggage and show them to their room and all that. It was so much fun and I even hosted an elder from Texas which was cool! But some of these new missionaries looked absolutely terrified hahaha that first day is way rough and some of these kids look like they just left primary, but it was nice to be able to talk to them and sort of help them through it. Well today we started our consecration week! So as soon as we left the temple this morning it began and I have not spoken any english all day! It is going to be very difficult but we are all very motivated to make this week 100% Finnish and I know that it will be very rewarding. I learn so much on SYL days so I can't even imagine a whole week haha I always assumed that by the time consecration week started we'd actually be able to speak pretty well but now I realize that that's not the case haha I mean I can pretty much find a way to say anything I want to say, just very simple and with a lot of hand motions. But I know that it is good preparation! 

We have kind of hit a point where they've basically taught us everything we need to learn, we've learned every major grammar principle so I feel like I've hit a wall. I think the only way to progress now is to actually go to Finland so I am so ready to get out of here. OK so for my first area: we've all been guessing where we'll go and I really really want to go to Rovaniemi which is the furthest north that they send misionaries (it's full on in the arctic circle) but my guess for my first area is Oulu which is super high north as well. I'm not sure why but that's my guess. The further away from Helsinki you are the better you get at Finnish so I'm hoping to go pretty far north so that I can immerse myself in it. But don't worry we asked Vanhin Vormo for some tips to survive the Finnish winters so I think I will be able to make it haha Well that's pretty much all for this week! Just know that I love you all and I miss you! I hope you all have a fantastic week and I can't wait to tell you all about our consecration week! I only have one more week to email you from the MTC! SO WEIRD! OK I love you! Moi Moi! 
Learning a lot of Finish!!!