Monday, June 24, 2013

I know that this is Jesus Christ's church and that Jesus Christ leads and directs it today through his prophet Thomas S. Monson.

Hallo!  det er godt å høre fra deg igjen denne strålende dagen! (Hello! It is good to hear from you again this glorious day!)

I have to say that your letter was pretty full of some ups and downs.  I am so sad to hear about Aunt Sandy.  Please tell her how much I love her and that I am so thankful for all the love and support that she gave me while I worked in the temple with her.  I wish her the best and I will be praying for her.

As far as your questions though... no there has been no travelling this week.  We just worked Narvik for the first whole week since we got here.  That made for what seemed like a long week.  Our potentials have been rather difficult to turn into investigators, essentially no one answers their phone.  Yes we do get fed, once a week.  The branch president has us over every Sunday for dinner.  Other than that I make a lot of peanut butter and honey sandwiches, pasta, burritos, stir fry, or hotdogs. Those are the staples of the missionary diet.  Every morning I have Granola cereal with yogurt, and sometimes a banana.  But ya, I think that I am still losing weight.  Last time I checked I was at 229. So I am getting back to high school weight!  I recently got p90x from one of the other missionaries and put it on my jump drive, so I do that 3 times a week.  

As far as the summer solstice, yes it gets celebrated but, nothing huge, just bonfires at midnight.  It was rainy here though that night so we didn't do it even though we had permission.  And yes, it is light 24\7.  The sun never goes down, hasn't since I got here 4 weeks ago.

Now about the week.

Things here have been pretty crazy.  We have had some very interesting experiences this week, to say the least.  We have had some serious ups and downs. This week might have topped the list for the longest week in the mission too... but I honestly wouldn't trade it for the world.  

Bad things first I guess... this week has been a lot of tracting.  I mean a lot.  We would work all day.  5 hours contacting on the main street, just walking up and down it, and then 3 hours of doors at night.  Most of the time just looking for people in the rain. So that was a little interesting. We have a lot of potentials that we are trying back to get to be investigators with not much luck as well.  BUt that being said, I now come to the experience of the week.  

When the Travelling Ap's were here Elder T and I had banked a street and given a book of mormon to a philipino kid.  He was way nice and said that he would read and we could come back in a week.  So this week Elder M and I tried to do just that.  We arrive at the house and try and ring the doorbell, it didn't sound like it worked so we decide to knock.  We see a shadow walk by the front door right after we do that so we assume that they are going to open up.  We wait a minute or two and nothing had happened.  So we decided to knock again. Just as we do so I here something strike the ground behind me, maybe 10 yards away.  I look behind me to find our Book of Mormon.  It had been cast out of the 2nd story window. I figured that means that they were not interested so we started walking away.  As I picked up the Book I realize was really had been done. The word Mormon had been cut out of the front cover, the back cover was ripped in half, some of the pages edges had been burned (an obvious attempt to try and set it on fire as they cast it out the window), the book completely destroyed.

I picked up the book and we left the house, never talking to whoever had done this.  

That was probably one of the most discouraging things that I had experienced, not only rejection but a literally attempt to destroy that which I know to be true.

So needless to say that was a hard experience.  But, after that we kept on working.  We had an amazing lessons with others.  One in particular being a man named M.  We had taught him the restoration before but we wanted to see how it was going with him and how it was going with the Book of Mormon we had left him.  We began to discuss and he told us about how he was beginning to be convinced that the Book was true.  I asked him if it was the words that were convincing him or if it was his feelings.  He then told me that it was his feeling that were telling him that the Book was true!

I echo that testimony. I know that if any honest seeker of truth reads the Book of Mormon they will know of its truthfulness.  I know because I have done that.  I know that this is Jesus Christ's church and that Jesus Christ leads and directs it today through his prophet Thomas S. Monson. 

We had many other great lessons throughout the week, some with people we taught others just to ourselves as we thought and pondered.  I have learned a great deal this week, and I am excited to continue to grow.

One of the other things that happened this week was that I finally had to give my first talk in Norwegian!  So that was yesterday!  I spoke about how happy missionary work makes us.  I shared my experience of my mission and how I am happier now than I ever have been.  How I have seen the gospel change the life of someone I know, how I receive joy as a result of seeing that person becoming a better person.

It really enjoyed the experience.

Now maybe to finish of with a funny experience...  One day Elder M and I were tracting.  We come across the street onto a new block and we look to our left and there is this abandoned house on our left. The weeds are almost as tall as us the paint chipping and falling off, the house in complete and utter disarray.  As we walk past we see these seagulls sitting on top like they own the place.  Just as we see them and they see us, and they take action.  They started dive bombing us and harassing us til we were half-way down the street haha.  Now every time we walk by the house they do the same thing.  We think that they actually have a nest or something on the top of the roof or something. 

The real funny part was when they began to do the same thing to the people behind us.  Some poor elderly woman couldn't really get away from them either.  

So that was some quality entertainment while contacting.

Anyways, that is about it.  I am still loving the mission, loving the people here, and loving the chance to be a missionary during this historic time.  We watched the conference to the mission presidents this morning and all I can say is wow.  We are so lucky to be living at this time to experience this kind of thing happening in the work.  

I know that if we seek to help others as we are motivated by love we will find success, that as we act on our love and faith the lord will bring miracles into our lives!  

Jeg elsker deg så mye!

Din sønn,
Eldste Jones

Monday, June 17, 2013



Well that is way cool to hear all of that about RJ!  It is so weird that he is so close behind me now!  He will be gone out of there in no time! 

Also, the Shirts got here!  They are awesome, they fit super well and are my new favorite shirts. Also I thought I would let you know that I asked some of the other missionaries about getting the suits tailored and they said it would actually cost more than buying a new suit.  So they recommended to just wait to the end of the summer when there are suit sales and just buy one then. Now about my week.

We had the Travelling assistants in town for a couple days.  So we worked with them all day tuesday, they helped us get 12 new potentials that we are now trying to work over into new investigators! One of the travelling A.Ps is actually a native Norwegian as well so he helped a lot with the Language to.  He is from the south though so he has a pretty funny dialect.  Very pretty dialect though.  (natives go to the English mtc) Then the next day we went to Trondheim again, so that meant like 5 hours in travel.  The time in air is only about 2 hours though.  

The time in trondheim was super short, we stayed the night then the next morning we had training.  Then we went back to the airport to go home.  The airport was a mess. Right before we got on the plan the airport fire alarm went off and we got evacuated.  So we all stood out on the Tarmac for about 30 minutes while they cleared the airport.  Not to mention our flight had already been delayed for almost an hour.  So when we got to the bodø airport we literally got off our first plane and ran to the next one and we were the last passengers to get on haha.   So that was a rather fun traveling experience.

Then we spent the rest of our time here in Narvik trying to work, but there was a City festival here for the weekend which meant blaring music throughout the city, marching bands, marathons, bike races the whole nine yards. 

Normally we do some contacting and then a lot of banking at night. So we try and do service but everytime we ask we get shot down.  The norwegians are very private.  But we will keep on trying!

Anyways that is about it for the last week,  I have been impressed over the last couple weeks for the renewed need of focused prayer. I know that as we show the Lord our desires through focused prayer, he will bless us according to those desires!  It is amazing how much He loves us!

I will need some of those prayers as tomorrow I will be taking my Norwegian drivers license test.  So wish me luck!

Jeg elsker deg så mye!

Din sønn
Eldste Jones

Monday, June 10, 2013


Heia igjen!

It is so good to hear from you today!  Glad that things are going well.

That is way cool to hear that the mission is like Popo's.  I would imagine so, I am probably not too far from where he served now. The Branch thing is definitely something to get used to.  We had about 6 of us there again on Sunday, with the missionaries.  No investigators unfortunately. 

The past week has been pretty good, we had a lot of stuff going on.  But questions come first.  Senior companion: shortly said, it is stressful.  I feel like I am learning a lot everyday and that I am being pulled in the directions that I need to grow in.  I like it though, I feel like I get to do a lot for the Lord in both helping my companion as well as the members and investigators.  My favorite part is just sitting down and counseling with Elder M.  It is amazing to see the Holy Ghost enter our lives as we try and make him the senior companion.  We were actually just asked to really focus on that (making the Holy Ghost the senior companion) in zone conference.  It was a very good reminder to have in the sense that I am just the Lords hands here in Narvik.  I do what he tells me, now the trick is learning what he is telling me to do.  I have been struck this week in how important the H.G. is in every aspect of our lives.  I am trying harder and harder to learn what he is saying specifically.

The district consists of Narvik, Bodø, and Mo i Rana.  So a very large geographical area with almost no one living in it haha.  The DL works in Bodø and his name is Elder Morris.  The Mo i Rana area is worked by sisters (ironically one of them being Sister Morris, no relation). The zone goes from Trondheim to the top of Norway, the biggest geographically, the smallest by far numerically, both in number of missionaries and in number of people.

So things we did in the last week.  First, I visited Trondheim!  It killed a lot of our work time here but it was an awesome experience.  We had to spend a day travelling to get there and a day to get back.  the focus of the zone conference was to make the H.G the senior companion and to sanctify yourself, both of which are things that I would really love at the moment.  It was definitely an inspired meeting.  I learned lots.

Other than that, we went and knocked on doors a lot.  I mean a lot.  We hit the streets for like 5 or 6 hours a day.  So that was pretty good too.  It wasn't raining or anything so we just had fun working.  

Luckily enough, we get to go back to Trondheim again this week too!  We have zone leader training this week.  So another couple days shot due to travel unfortunately.  it is kind of Hard to get work done without being in your proselyting area.  

That is all I have for you right now, so yaaa...

Jeg elsker deg! 

or in Nord Norsk

 Æ elska dæ!

Søna din
Eldste Jones

Monday, June 3, 2013



It is so good to hear from you!  It sounds like things are super busy back at home!  I did get those pictures of prom, they looked like they had fun!  

Now on to Narvik!  I arrived here on Wednesday, we only had time to do about 15 minutes of work before we had to plan for the next day. I had to take 3 different flights to get here, the last of which was on a super small prop. plane.  Those prop planes are mostly how you get around here in north between cities. Then we hit the ground running. On thursday we had an awesome weekly planning session and set some pretty high goals and started working.  We have been doing a lot of banking (knocking), contacting doesn't really work in such a small town.  There is about 27,000 people that live here in Narvik, so it is comparable to Rexburg.  We have several areas that surround Narvik as well that we can go to but they usually take between an hour and four hours to get to. Fun facts, the sun never goes down here, you can see it at any hour of the day unless there are clouds.  Super weird.  

I am in fact not the most nothern area in Norway.  We the third most northern area, Tromsø and Alta are the highest.  Alta being the most northern area in the world for missionaries.

My address is 51 Dronningens gata 51, 8514 Narvik.

Other than those shirts maybe I could get some more deoderant?  The norwegian stuff doesn't cut it.

The branch here has about 6 active members.  That consists of the branch president and his wife and daughter, a elders quorum president and his wife, and then two other members.  We meet in a Red Cross building here in the city.  There is about 45 members in the branch but some live more than 5 hours away and they cannot come to church.  So it is really frustrating for me that we cannot even reach out to all the members that we have to look after because of our boundary limitations.

Our sunday was awesome, the branch president brought a referral to church and we got to teach him afterwards.  He is from china and is here studying electrical engineering.  He speaks pretty good english.  He is also probably our best investigator we have now.  Sunday only had two hours of church though, sunday school and sacrament.  And sacrament was really short because the 6 of us bore pretty short testimonies haha...  That was a funny experience.

We also have about 2 others that are positive in the sense that they were progressing before the area was closed a couple of months ago.  So we hope to get them moving as well.

So ya that is about it for stuff here.  we are being really helped by the Lord here.  He is giving us many many blessings.

We are heading to Trondheim for zone conference tomorrow.  We will be there for most of the week.  So that is exciting as well.

Jeg elsker deg!

Din sønn,
Eldste Jones