Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Finland Missionary Moms Luncheon

March 31, 2010 -

Wanted to share this fun photo of some of the moms of Finnish missionaries.  We met for lunch at Lisa Christiansen's home in South Jordan, Utah - it was soooo much fun and Elder Campbell - freshly home a week from his mission in Finland - spoke with us about what an incredible time our boys will have in Finland and how amazing each of them are - and Lisa said: "of course they are........look at their mothers!!!!"  Well said.  :)

Top Row:  Marianne Marlor, Sis. Nielsen, Ronda Campbell
Middle Row:  Lucinda Bailey, Nancy Bryant, CJ (Elder) Campbell, Valine Quinn, Corby Young, Debbie May, Linda Christensen, Lesli Lytle, ME :), Marilyn Powell
Seated in front:  Lisa Christiansen (our gracious hostess), Sis. Burt and Susan Gorringe

Monday, March 29, 2010

March 29, 2010

Brian didn't have much to report this week but he did send some pictures - enjoy!
Brian taking a tour of the castle with some of the other elders that came up to visit.  And of course, looking studly in his shades!

Of course, no castle would be complete without some canons...........
And of course Brian just had to take a picture of the "water closet"....naturally!
Here is the apron we sent him - in one of the last posts, he was rolling meatballs in his suit!  This will be MUCH better....

Brian and his companion, Elder Beard went back to the castle to do a little "tracking" - good luck with that!
Hmmm, guessing no one was home!

Monday, March 22, 2010

March 22, 2010

I am in Savonlinna with Elder Beard for another change. With change calls, anything can happen. There is no set thing at all. But, i hear, that usually a missionary is in his starter city for a while. So I'm not surprized, I am still here. I'm a little suprized Elder Beard is still here though. Usually, you are with your companion for about 2 changes but 3 isn't rare. 

I belive it was Drew Boettcher's birthday last Monday (March 15). Can you tell him i said Happy Birthday. Speaking of which, I saw a Finnihs Drew and a Finnish Tyler Pattishaw (clearly not as big but looked like him). It was funny. They spoke Finnish and everything. haha

Haven't heard from My Missionarys in America in a while. I think the chain letter should be coming in about 3 weeks though. Did you write them?

The castle was sweet. Sorry I haven't told you about it, we didn't go until last tuesday with our district. It was way cool. I got pictures. I will send them to you through email next time. Hopefully you get them. Our district was Elders: Me, Beard, Falk, Watson, Oseen, Sharp.

Food. What of the chocolate did everyone like? Specifics. I did try Piima. I tried it my second week here. Yes, it is everything Elder Gorringe said it was, haha. I had reindeer pizza!! Best pizza i have had yet in Finland. It was awesome!!!

That's all from me. I will talk to you all soon. See ya

Vanhin Behnke

Monday, March 15, 2010

March 15, 2010

I got your package. Thank you. I'm wearing the pants right now. 
Zone Conference was awesome. I got to see Higginson and Marlor again. They were so fun in the MTC. I'm happy they are in my zone. It was fun. I got some pictures and I will send them to you through the attachments so hopefully you get them.

Driving the 6 hours to Zone Conference was tiring but well worth it to see some friends from the MTC:

with Elder Marlor

with Elder Higginson

Things are really picking up here in the mission field everywhere in Finland. Two years ago or so they were averaging 1 new investigator per companionship every 10 months. Now, in January, the mission found 108, then in February 79. The first week in March was 27. Things are happening. Its unbelievable. We are so close with the guy I told you about. We are just waiting for him to get an answer. We haven't talked to our sister investigator in weeks and we dropped one, the one who has been cutting us off when we speak. It's going well though.

I don't have much to say in this letter. I'm just out here doing it. I find out on saturday if i leave Savonlinna or not. We'll see.

Love you all,
Vanhin Behnke

Each year in Savonlinna they have an ice sculpture contest, here are some of the things they made - it is awesome - they are melting now.

Not much to do in Savonlinna for fun besides play with the ice:

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Fun new site

Here is a fun link - check it out.  It may take a couple of minutes to load

Monday, March 8, 2010

March 8, 2010

No email today..........don't know what happened.  I emailed Elder Beard's mother and she did receive one this morning so his P-Day was not changed.

Until next week I guess.

WAIT........I texted Dan on his trip to let him no NO EMAIL and he just called me.  He got a letter on his computer, whew!!!
So, here it is........

Hei Perheni,
What's going on at home? How are things going? What's new?

Well, things are going extremely well here. We have an investigator who came to church yesterday! The guy is a stud.  I think he is really really interested in what we are teaching. He enjoyed himself at church and is coming next week again. I have a lot of high hopes for him.
Things are really picking up here. We are not contacting aan tracting everyday all day cause now we have people to teach. we have one tonight, one tomorrow, and 2 possibly 3 on Wednesday. It's awesome. We have another investigator who wants our help to stop smoking. It should be really good. We have a plan! I'll let you know how it goes.
We leave for Oulu for Zone Conference on Thursday morning. We take a train out to Joensuu. Then we are road tripping again with Elders Falk and Watson. Should be good. I love zone conference. I'm pretty excited.

Yes, I do like Helsinki. I'm not used to seeing big buildings cause there is none of that in Savonlinna. I hope I can serve in Helsinki sometime in my mission. But, right now, I love being in Savonlinna. I hope I can stay here for another change or two here.

I'm teaching myself to give myself my own haircut. That is what's going on today. That should be fun or horrible haha. Also, I'm learning how to make this awesome fish soup and is so good and my own jam. These will be very useulf to know down the road and I'm excited.

It's so cool being able to speak another language. Elder Beard and I were talking to this one guy in Finnish but we couldn't speak Finnish. So we switched it to English and he knew very little Englsh. we asked him what he was and he was Russian. So we called up Elder Falk, who is Russian, and Elder Falk talked to guy and told him about the church. It was so cool. It's awesome being able to switch languages for people. Its so cool!

Finnish is going along. I feel like I just took another step up in understanding and speaking. So it is coming. I'm excited.

Also, I mailed Chris a letter. I also mailed Kristem Savage a letter at the same time. I had my mittens on when I put them in the mailbox but I only remember seeing one letter which was Chris'. Kristen's may have been stuck to it but i'm not sure. I looked around for Kristen's letter and I couldn't find it. I hope I sent it. So, we Chris gets his letter, can you, like a couple days later, asked Kristen if she got hers.? Also, can you ask Chris which of the pictures he sent me is Sophie. I have no idea which one. That would be great.

Did Dad try the samiakki? What did you like of the choclate?

Got to go. I love you all. Talk to you soon. Crazy to think that come March 14, i will be out in the mission for 5 months already. Whoa! I'm running out of time! Love you all
Vanhin Behnke

Monday, March 1, 2010

March 1, 2010

AUSTIN IS GOING TO GUAM!! THAT'S INSANE!!! Good for him! I'm a little bummed he isn't coming to hang out with me in Finland but Guam is amazing. What do they speak in Guam? How did you find out? I love that guy. Tell him I said Congrats.

I got your package. Thank you. I was looking through my pantry and I had no snack food. Then, my package came I got Beef Jerky. It was great and thank you for the pictures. Scott's new mower looks sweet. I like all of his work clothes. I'm a fan! Is there anymore stuff?

Things I need. I need a memory card charger. I have been meaning to tell you that but never remembered to. But yes, that is what I need. Thought I packed it, definitely didn't. Is Mr. Mac sending me free pants?

I bought a new coat. I figured that coats would be way expensive when i planned to buy one, so I got one know since winter is almost over. It was 45 euros. Pretty good deal for a new winter coat. It's got fur on the hood. It's sweet. I like it.

The ring. I just read your email but i don't have a ruler so i will let you know next week.

Did you like the chocolate? What did you like and not like?

DA's - dinner appointments.  We get about 1-2 a week. I think that's good. I'm not sure the average amount. I have no complaints. How many do the elders in Colorado get?

I am able to make dinners. I make a beefy barbque pot dinner which is awesome, the famous noodles garlic and peas, and spaghetti, every week. I don't want to change it haha. I learned how to cook some things, I learned how to make meatballs. I learned how to make Finnish bread called Pulla and also this fruit soup dessert thing called Kisseli, which is awesome.

I haven't gained too much weight. Iäm at 152. So I have lost 13 pounds since the MTC. I don't know what happened to me when I first came out here. I feel good though. I don't know if I still have jet lag cause I can falll alseep anywhere and all the time hahaha.

I do hear from Chris. I got a letter from him a couple weeks ago. I wrote him back. He should be getting it in about a week. That's cool that he wants to get my emails. I love that guy. I love how he got me that bell haha. It works great here. One ring and people move haha. Its great!

Finnish is coming. I still don't know anything. haha. But it will come more. There is no pride when it comes to learning Finnish haha. The minute you learn something, you get like a brick thrown at your face the next (thats the best way I can describe it haha). It's going alright though.

Slush. Slush is the kyrptonite to snow tires. It's warming up quick here and I love it. There is a bummer though. They did an ice sculpting competition and they made children's slides out of ice and they were way sweet. There was a cloud one, a monglionian themed one, and some crazy cool other ones. They are melting away. I liked them. I got some pictures on them though. :)

Dad, I agree with the Bible and Book of Mormon thing. However, Elder Holland talked about how the Spirit is so much stronger in the Book of Mormon and we should strive to use it as much as possible.That is why missionaries just teach from the Book of Mormon. Personally, I think we need to teach from the Bible to make a clear connection to the Book of Mormon. However, the Spirit is the converter so we need to teach from the Book of Mormon. It really depends on how you plan to teach it. Every investigator is different. Some need to be taught a from the Bible a little more. Example, we just found a new person to teach named Toni. He knows a lot about the Bible. We started teaching him the about the Restoration (first lesson), if you have a Preach My Gospel which I think there is an extra one in the house you can see the lessons we teach in Chapter 3,  with the Bible and then introduced the Book of Mormon to him. It made a smoother transition for him to relate and undersantd the purpose and importance of the Book of Mormon. Things are going well with him. We teach him again tonight.

We head off to Joensuu tomorrow for splits. It might be Elder Watson and I again. WOO HOO!

I will write you next week. Going to see the castle now. Haven't been yet. It should be fun.

Love you all,
Vanhin Behnke