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Monday, June 29, 2015

June 29, 2015 Dishes for Days

Hej Familie! 

I never know what to title emails so that random sentence is in reference to some service we did for the ward. They had this huge, fancy party for the adults which involved multiple courses and the missionaries were basically the waiters haha. I ended up washing dishes for no joke like 3 hours hahaha. It was actually more fun than you could ever expect! Æ Hafen and i made a game out of how fast we could wash dishes and we got our speed to approximately 7 seconds a plate! It was pretty crazy!

Probably the biggest story this week was that on tuesday we were stranded at the very south of our area for a little while! We had an adventure trying to find this person who ordered a book of Mormon online this week! We had to take a bus to the very south of our area but the stops name that we got from the bus plan website was "wave to get off" but in Danish so it wasn't really a stop and we didn't realize the meaning until we missed it. Then we walked a couple miles to this persons house through woods and farmland! One of our investigators was there already with the person who ordered the book which was crazy! He said that she could meet with us with him in his apartment in the city! But because of the delay we missed the last bus home! We walked a ways to this little town and then all the way to this other town just through beautiful Danish countryside! wanted to hitchhike but Æ Bateman said no hahah. Eventually a member came and picked us up but it was pretty crazy. I thought hitchiking would have been epic but thats "against the rules" or something! 

Yesterday we did an English Fast which means that Æ Bateman and I only spoke Danish the whole day! It was tough but not as tough as I thought it was going to be! I've been really lucky to pick up the language so fast! We both each only broke for maybe a few words the whole day until we stopped by a potential we had and he let us in! We taught a lesson in English and he said he'd like to continue meeting but just after he's back from summer vacation! Ahhhh so close. We keep finding people who would like to learn more just in a couple weeks, or in August, or with missionaries in Aarhus after he's done moving (That was actually way legit, we were walking into M---'s building and this guy said "Hey! i'm a huge fan! and pulled a book of Mormon out of the car! He told us how exciting of a read it was and how he'd like to learn more but he's in the process of moving so we gave him those elders info and got his! Pretty crazy!) But point is we are so close to a breakthrough holy cow! 

A couple other random things! I can now successfully bike without hands. I scored a goal in soccer by heading it in from a corner kick (super lucky!). I have received a few nicknames from other missionaries including Garbage Man because of my rebounding ability in basketball and I'm told I resemble the Bear from Jungle Book? don't know exactly what that means but pretty funny. Æ Hartmann the new Elder is crazy good at basketball, he can dunk so thats super fun. 

It's pretty great being a missionary because you can just talk about scriptures with people everyday! My understanding of them has skyrocketed and hopefully will continue to do so! We meet the new President and his wife on Friday! I'm excited to meet the man who I'll be serving under the next few years! A lot can happen to a whole mission in just two years and it starts with him! I love all of you so much! Be good to the missionaries in the ward! If they give a good spiritual thought or something send it my way I might be able to use it ;)'

Meget Kærlighed Hels
Ældste McBride

This is a pic of us in this teeny tiny little town 2 hours from home after we found out we missed the last bus hahaha
This ones for the kids! Pretty epic street art huh?
This is what part of the road to that persons house looked like! Straight out of a fairy tale!

Monday, June 22, 2015

June 22, 2015 Goddag!

Heeyyyyyy how's it goin everybody? 

Way to go Cole! That was a ton of football! I'm way jealous of the beach that would be so nice! By the way HAPPY FATHERS DAY Daddio! If you have any sweet stories from your mission you should send them to me! Also HAPPY ANNIVERSARY thats so crazy!!
This week was a little tough! We had a ton planned and very little that actually went through! One story I can share is that we stopped by this guy who met the Missionaries two year ago when the knocked on his door. They taught the first lesson and then set a baptismal date. Missionaries were unable to contact him since then despite literally hundreds of stop bys. So on tuesday we stopped by and a woman answered and said we should come back the next morning. A man answered that wednesday morning and said that the guy we're looking for would be there in the morning that friday! So on friday we knocked and duh duh duhyhhh he answered!! From what we know missionaries haven't seen him for two years! That was pretty crazy! He said he was busy that day so he gave us an appointment for the next day. When we showed up he still wasn't there. Dissappointing but still pretty crazy! 

This week we also practiced our contacting technique with the Book of Mormon and worked on how to make it better and that led to about 3 really potential contacts all from knocking doors (We do that a lot hahah)! One said to come back in 2 weeks, another in 3 weeks, and another said his whole family would be able to talk to the missionaries in 2 months but that he was really interested! So this week was a good set up week, but immediate victories just kept being barely out of our grasp but oh well! 

We've been learning a lot in our studies lately because Æ Bateman and I have been focusing on Christlike attributes! Understanding how to develop those and what they really are has really been a help to the Challenge we started at the beginning of the transfer! I'm also halfway through Jesus the Christ now so I feel like i have a much better grasp of the New Testament! Its been quite the experience to really dive deep into all that stuff! i also started a study journal which has been making me read the Book of Mormon more closely. Just in case you forgot its a pretty great book! Mormon 9 is awesome!  I also gave my first blessing in Danish this week, well I annointed but still pretty crazy! That's about it for this week. Things are about to explode here in Aalborg I feel it! I love all of you! 

Meget Kærlighed Helst,
Ældste McBride

P.S. Dad I saw the U2 on U2 book in Danish and had a Devo song stuck in my head for most of the week. Cheeseburger Cheeseburger...

Boooooooyaaaaaaaaa Capri Sonne and Cool American chips for one cool American!!
This what the liver paste sandwiches look like!

Monday, June 15, 2015

June 15, 2015 Breakthroughs!!!

Ok ok this week was absolutely amazing! Easily the best week of my mission! We began an awesome Book of Mormon study with M---! We discussed the first chapter of 1 Nephi for like an hour and said he'd like to continue with that next time! He's all about really digging deep into the scriptures hahaha. We also had a fantastic lesson with C---! All signs are pointing to some really amazing progress in the next transfer, she's comitted to finding an answer, she broke up with her boyfriend, and shes visiting an ex missionary in the US for 2 weeks! We're way excited!! Also that same day we were knocking on doors and for the first time in my mission and only the third in Æ Bateman's we were let in! Ya knock a few hundred times and it will be opened unto you! That's how it goes right? hahah. She said she reads the Bible all the time but sometimes doesn't understand it and we were like "Then have we got the book for you!" hahah we planning on having another meeting tomorrow! So wayyyyy exciting! 

Now to build into the most spiritual experience of the week. We have a friend that plays basketball named M--- and this week and his friend where we discussed in great detail Islam and Mormonism. It is insanely amazing how lined up a lot of the doctrines are. Literally besides the Atonement of Jesus Christ it's almost the same. So that was suprising! They invited us to come discuss more at their Mosque that Sunday, so yesterday after church we biked over to the Mosque. In Aalborg it's this way small humble building and we went inside and began discussing our faith with about 7 or 8 muslims including an Imam, which is like a Muslim pastor. Sitting there cross legged, on a carpet, in a mosque, in a circle of Muslim men I felt a confirmation from the Holy Ghost that we were right, that everything we stand for is true, the Church is true, it was the most amazing feeling of comfort in a situation that was admittedly very intimidating. All of them were very nice and very respectful the whole time but we could feel that they were used to "confounding" Christians in other faiths but there we sat, able to answer every question they had, with confidence! Just a couple 19 year old kids in a mosque, preaching Jesus Christ as our Savior and that there are prophets today. I don't think it strongly affected any of them other than they are now very impressed with our church, especially since we were fasting that day, they thought that was amazing because fasting is really important in Islam. I've never felt like more of a missionary than in that Mosque. We gave out a couple Book of Mormons, including one to the Imam. They invited us back anytime. We'll probably go back one more time, but it's not really our purpose to debate religion when we could be out finding others. It was really powerful. 

Anyway that was about our week! It was really awesome! It was also transfers and me and Æ Bateman are staying together!! Not suprising because I still have a transfer of training left. We are beginning this 40 day challenge thing that we read about in a talk which is designed to help build a habit of turning any trial and any temptation into an immediate opportunity for spiritual growth, so we're excited about that! We said goodbye this morning to Æ Gudmundson and Søster Williams who are both serving on Sjælland this transfer! Æ Hafen is heading to København to pick up a brand new Greenie who's gonna start here in Aalborg just like me!!! All 6 elders in the district slept in the same appartment last night because we were going to help take luggage to the train and Æ Willardson who was serving up in the very north of Jylland, Frederikshavn, said the best thing I've ever heard. "Can I use your dryer, my baptismal clothes are still wet" Just epic! They had a baptism up there yesterday and he transferred away this morning! The work is going forward and its really exciting. This was the best week for our distict in something over 3 months! 

It's so great to hear about Arizona, I can't even imagine 100 degree weather! It rained on us as we biked for over 2 hours last Saturday hahahaha! I'm glad to hear everyone's doing great1 Enjoy swimming!!! Holy dang I miss that!

Meget Kærlighed Helst,
Æ McBride

P.s. Sorry I didn't take pics this week! Oops!

Monday, June 8, 2015

June 8, 2015 hola familia yo hablo espanol


The summer sounds absolutely crazy! I forgot how many fun activities that go on all at the same time! The ward sounds like they're doing some absolutely killer missionary work! Way to go! I wish I could share some way amazing stories over here but still a little dry on that! We taught a grand total of buh buh buhhhh 2 lessons this week haha. :) I just laugh because I've been having to watch the District training videos, since I'm a greenie, which are about missionaries in America, who casually plan somewhere around 40 lessons a week when they do their weekly planning which is way funny hahah just way dumb videos for us to watch! Both of them were with our pal M---- but one was his friend telling us about Islam while smoking a cigarette every 10 minutes which was ehhh. It was actually way interesting to understand more about that whole business and have a feeling I'll learn much more by the end of the Mish! 

Way awesome things! The bike has functioned for the whole week! We also did service at two different members houses and when I said I was from AZ they told us their conversion stories. Both were introduced to the church when Missionaries from AZ knocked on their doors. Both stories also involved one of the missionaries being greenies, one was even named Jeff McBride. One of the missionaries very well could have been Egon Johnson a long time ago in Sweden. Ask him if he taught a young girl named Inga when he was on a mission. Those stories got me pumped! The language really came along this week! I've jumped up like crazy in my understanding which is great and I keep asking questions so I'm learning more words and expressions every day! We had zone conference this week which was President Sederholm's last zone conference. I've never met someone who can bring the Spirit into a meeting with fewer words. I'm sad to see him go but at the same time ridiclously excited to meet the new president President O'Bryant and find out what legacy he is going to start building. When President Sederholm got here he turned the mission that had been spiraling down for years around and had a solid 2.5 years of growth so I'm hoping we can keep that up! We also got to here from Elder Holland who broadcasted from Scotland till all of Northern Europe. It was powerful, just a burning testimony of the Book of Mormon! Just so good! :)

Anyway one thing I learned in studies this week is that the Lord doesn't want us to sit back and ask for stuff to happen, he wants us thinking, working, planning, acting and then asking for help. So that's what i'm trying to do Out pray, out think, out work this way slow time here and it'll be great!

Also, I found out that my quote book isn't exactly mission library so will you send a few generally awesome quotes to me every week .They don't have to be like mormon pinterest quotes haha just inspiring or epic basically. Also I found out we can listen to classical music so what are some of your favorite composers Mom/maybe send me some music please :) Also Cole didn't tell me about his little "hangouts" with "girls" so I'd love to hear from him and Ike! Anyways jeg elsker jer!

Kærlighed Helse,
Ældste McBride

We did this thing called a nougat bit challenge this morning which is a whole box of this crazy sweet cereal as fast as you can! I'm proud to say I got 2nd place with a time of 15 minutes, 2.5 minutes behind Æ Hafen but 6 behind the standing Mission record. It was like 300 g of sugar. 155 g of fat and like 3500 calories!

I didn't take a lot of pics thsi week so I made a series called mission life. this is the view of the center of our opgang complex from my bedroom window!

This is me making B fast. The kitchen is exactly one Æ McBride wide!

This is my bed, the blanket fort contraption blocks the sun which comes through our window approximately at 4:30ish every morning!

This is the Fjord that we jog down to every morning at 6:30!

This flag has everyone who has lived in our apartment on it. 
This is our living room/desks!

Monday, June 1, 2015

June 1, 2015 Min tå tog to tog til København

Thats a Dansk joke because all 4 of those words in the middle are pronounced essentially the same way. It means my toe took two trains to Copenhagen! Ahhh Danish! The language is coming along pretty great for a greenie honestly I can't really complain at all! Pronunciation is just crazy tough because theres a lot of sounds that just aren't in english! We helped with a stake deacon beehive activity and so I got some 12 and 13 year olds to laugh as I tried to reapeat these totally tough tongue twisters (alliteration what up) back to them! It was pretty funny! 

I loved all those pictures! that pic of Jack, Kyle, and Peyton was crazy I didn't realize it was already graduation! Kyle's going up to provo right? Anyway trek sounded way awesome holy cow those activities sound so sweet! Speaking of all of that I can't believe it's summer back home! Has it hit 100 degrees yet? I'm way jealous of camping and pools and lakes haha! Also Cole is just being a little stud with all those ladies! That group will be way fun going into Fremont. Cole will have to write me and tell me who he thinks is the cutest ;) Isaac looks like a total pro with the bow! That would be so sick if by the time I came home he was like an archery expert haha! Thats like three summers in a row at fossil creek! what a tradition!

Ok I guess I'll just go through my week and then I'll answer your questions! So Sunday night I broke the chain and the whole gear sytem on my bike so we got back way late but luckily I didn't need it for monday which was FARUP SOMMERLAND! the Aalborg missionaries plus two members piled in a bus with a million danish 14 year olds and rode up north till "Denmark's funnest forest" to translate their slogan! I thought it was way fun because I was in an amusement park in Denmark so wooaahhh you know! No rides were really way crazy or anything but there were no lines and basically hardly any like safety restrictions you just jump in your seat, someone maybe checks if your secure and then you're off without even a "hands and feet inside at all times" way fun! Tuesday and wednesday were just normal days but with tons of travel time because i didn't have a bike. 

On Thursday we took a train for 6 hours into Copenhagen for my one month meeting! I chatted with this pregnant woman on the way there for the first couple hours and ended up teaching her the whole first lesson! It was way good because Æ Bateman and I couldn't sit together so I was flying without a safety net! we started in English a little bit but then switched to Danish and it was just way awesome. She got off the train sooner than I expected so I missed her number but she knows about mormon.org and she seemed way affected by our talk. We spent the night in the APs apartment so there was 8 of us in a 4 man apartment which was crazy! It was soo good seeing my MTC group again we had a blast catching up and then we all got to go through the temple! In Danish!! woaaaaahhh pretty crazy! The only tough thing was that every other person from my mtc group has at least 1 baptismal date and things seem to be hopping in all their areas. President kept going around talking about how everyone could help their specific investigators and then to us he'd say but you're helping M----! Which is totally true! I'll talk more about that in a little bit but it's not like 'normal missionary work' you know? Anyway on the train ride home Æ West and I sat together and we chatted with this woman and got her number and everything pretty fun! 

The rest of the week was service, weekly planning, church, and a lot of knocking on doors. Church is going way better but it's way hard to get anything specific out of talks and when people tell long stories I get way lost! We had two people say they were gonna come this week but they no showed. The ward is somewhere like a 100 active members maybe I'm not sure exactly but its not big but not like crazy tiny! The thing is a ton of Danes speak better English than basically any missionary can speak Danish especially members because almost all entertainment is in English. From what I understand a lot of education is Danish too. So we learn the language more so that people will respect our effort I think than for actual understanding. Food wise! I'm losing a ton of weight right now hahaha coming from college to having a hurt back to the MTC I was heavier than ever but then I went to biking all day and only eating meals I prepare myself and i'm just dropping kilos! like 15-20 lbs already from when I weighed myself the 2nd day in the land. We eat rye bread with liver paste and red beats (way better than it might sound), Fried rice, Curry, Cereal stuff or bread with jam and cheese (Danish thing) for breakfast. Members also feed us sometimes and they give us leftovers too! We ate at this vietnamese womans house and she seriously made buckets of this noodle fish soup stuff which we had to fight to finish to be polite hahah and she also made like a 100 egg rolls for just the 4 of us! It was insane. The leftover bag included 2 bags of cooked white rice, a bunch of candy, a full chicken, and a liter of juice. Ridiculous hahah!

Ok so now a little more about who we visit. We try and stop by a few different inactives and old investigators but none of them really meet with us regularly. We also meet with A--- who is in the mental hospital and that's along the lines of service/missonary work. He truly believes the church is true but just has some issues that prevent him from being in a stable enough place to make lasting committments. We also meet with a girl who has been investigating for almost 2 years who has read the BoM D&C and the pearl of great price but just isn't quite sure its 100% true. M---- is a recent convert who got baptized in January I think. We work a lot with him because he is struggling and we're doing all we can to help him feel like he has support and that he can do it. He goes to college here in Aalborg so theres all those normal college temptations plus he was Muslim so a lot of his friends and his whole family is of that faith plus its like finals time here and so there's just a ton of pressure on him.  It's not exactly the missionary work I was expecting out here but its way more important. We're praying really hard this week to try and find someone new to teach because we really aren't teaching very often but no effort is wasted as it says in Preach my Gospel!

Anyway that was a long letter to make up for last week's short one!

Jeg elsker jer,
Ældste McBride
We found a hedgehog while doing service. Pindsvind in Danish!

That's me and my dad copying a lame looking nick show!