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Monday, November 30, 2015

Howdy, all! :) It's been a grand week, once more, here in the frozen land of Denmark! We had our first snowfall of the season just a few days ago, so one can indeed say that 'it's beginning to look a [smidge more] like Christmas!'' The Christmas lights in the city are lit, and the giant tree in the Square is shining in all it's grandeur!!  :) Sadly, I don't have any pictures with me from it, so that'll have to wait until next week: but then it won't even matter because I won't be emailing from Odense next week!! That's right!! Another transfer has flown by, and I'm getting kicked out of Odense :( But it's okay!! It's been a fabulous 12 weeks here :)
I'm headed back to Sjælland for what appears to be my very last area on the mission! I'll be serving in Birkerød (have fun pronouncing that one!! It has an 'ø' in it!!), which is an area that actually just opened up for Sisters this past transfer! So it's all pretty fresh :) Transfers are really weird for me this time, though; I'm not leaving Odense until Thursday, because I'm wating for my new companion to get back from Iceland!! Sister Lyman (and Sister Reed) has been up there teaching the Elders in Iceland how to use genaology in their Missionary work :) So that's fun :) I get a few more days in this delightful little city!! I'm going to miss all of the tributes to Hans Christian Andersen all over the place! But it will always hold a special place in my heart :) <3

I hope you have all had a fantastic week, because I sure have :) Life, and all of the experiences it brings, is sooooooo great :) We enjoyed a wonderful week, starting off last Monday with finding a man who is soooooooooooooooooooo super spiritual! haha, we had a great conversation, and he wants us to come back, which is awesome!!!
That night (monday), all the missionaries here on Fyn (Elders Amos, Dibble, Howe, Jeppsen, Jensen, Murphey, and Perkins, and Sisters Ackerman, Landvatter, Orr, and Soelberg)  had dinner with Elder and Sister Turpin!! It was so great! I'm going to miss them :)
we also found this sign on a door, addressed to us:

a sweet little note from a guy telling us that he wasn't really interested in us coming back. Well, at least he let us know when we came by again!

On Tuesday, we were actually feeling under the weather, so nothing tooo exciting happened.
Wednesday rolled along, and the health was back!! So we went out and did our darling missionary work :) really good night!
THURSDAY WAS THANKSGIVING and it was wonderful :) We all headed up to Aarhus, and had a great time :) we had a fantastic Zone Conference, complete with Thanksgiving dinner, a talent show (graced with my new-found talent of ukelele playing), and some good ol' American football!!
I also ran into this guy:

Elder Ericksen!! What a champ!! :D It was so great to see him! It may end up being the only time we see each other on the mission, but hey, IT HAPPENED!! We'll all just have to come back and visit in a big huge family reunion sometime in the future!! :D

On the way home from Aarhus, we caught a ride from the Turpins- a trip that should only have taken 1 ½ hours took a whopping 4½!!!! All thanks to late night traffic due to road work! But we got home (eventually), and snuggled up with hot chocolate and a ukelele :) great way to end the day <3

Friday was super awesome!! We had back to back appointments all day long, and had a great time :) I LOVE BEING A MISSIONARY!! Everyone you meet is soooo great and loving, and I love seeing them progress in their own testimonies and faith <3

Then Saturday happened- we ''enjoyed'' a couple hours of weekly planning, then did some genaology work during our lunch hour, and rode the train down to Svendborg to eat one last time (for me, at least) with our dear friend Maria Hartmann! She's soooo sweet, and I'll miss her a lot!!
On the train ride back from Maria's, miracles were happening!! I sat down in the train in a different spot than Søster Orr (it's easier to talk to as many people as possible that way), and as soon as I sat down, the man across the isle starting asking me about my nametag and the work I do here- he was actually interested in learning more, so he gave me his number, and we'll see him again!! He was particularly interested in Family History, so it's a good thing we've all been brushing up on that! 
When the man got off the train, two women came on and walked past, but after a bit of time, they made their way towards me again and took the empty seats right across from me. They chatted for a while and finished their beers, and I just let them hygge while reading out of the Conference Liahona we had just gotten on Thursday.
I had been reading Sister McConkie's talk from the women's conference about being a light to others around us, when all of a sudden, these two women in front of me started talking to me asking about who I was, if I was a nun (how many times has this now?? haha, I promise, I don't look like a nun....), and what I've been doing here in Denmark! I had another fantastic conversation with them about faith and the Word of Wisdom (they asked about it, I didn't bring it up at first ;) hahaha).
I found it so exhilerating to be so easily recognized as someone different, and someone strange to other people! Both of these occasions started because people saw that I was acting differently and doing something different than the usual slew of people we run into!! I want to continue to be so recognizibly different after the mission!

We read in the book of Psalms that the word of The Lord is a light on our path, and that we can trust the Light that He is. We know that He is the Light of the world, and that as we strive to exemplify Him in all we do, we can also become a light to those around us!!
One of my favorite songs sung by Josh Groban has a quote in it that says, ''When darkness blinds you, I will shine to guide you!'' haha, don't think I'm being cheesy here, but I like to think that this is something Christ says to us all!! He will be the light to break the darkness around us, and we can be the same for our friends, collegues, and acquaintences!!

I hope you all have a fantastic week, and that you can all continue to build your priceless faith in Jesus Christ- it is the one thing in this life that really even matters :) and your faith will lead you to great things <3

I love you all!!

Med kærlig hilsen,
Søster Morgan B Soelberg

Monday, November 23, 2015

Gå ud og skab lidt Magi til Minderne

It's been an increeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeedible week!! I feel like I have learned and experienced soooo much these past 7 days! <3 It's been absolutely incredible!

The week started out a little slow and down, but that only means that it can go straight up! Last Sunday (Nov 15) I was thinking a lot about some things we had been talking about in Relief Society about life and goals, and I got thinking about how much I want to do with my life with soooooooo little time to do it all! But alas, in the moment of utter despair (which wasn't really soooo utter despair-y) I sat down and penned out some intense goal setting! Haha, it was super weird, but super fun! I would really recommend it to you all to do that once in a while; review previous goals and make new ones! And with the New Year coming up right around the corner, it's the perfect time and season! I loved what President Monson has just said in the latest Liahona -->
''There is yet time this year to extend the helping hand, the loving heart, and the willing spirit—in other words, to follow the example set by our Savior and to serve as He would have us serve.''
 I Think this season is the perfect time to truly become that miracle to other around you (shoutout to Mosiah 8:18, one of my favorite scriptures!!).
There are so many people around us, every day and in every place! One of my biggest goals on the mission has been to make people smile, no matter the situation! It has taken a lot of effort and learning to be able to express my own personality in Danish, and while the language still isn't perfect, I have had so many wonderful experiences helping others to see that I am my own person, and that I have a brain and feelings! There is no greater joy than that of testifying to others using the song of your heart. We are all 100% individual, and we can all influence other people in specific ways! 

My challenge for you all this week is to recognize a talent that you have, and use it to help and serve someone else! Maybe you can help each other out by acknowledging one anothers talents and coming up with a ''game-plan'' on how you can do better to help the family/community around you :) ''Gå ud og skab lidt magi til minderne!!'' (Go out and create magical memories!!)

Three of my favorite things this week:
Hearing the Primary sing and testify during Sacrament meeting
Meeting with one of my favorite best friends in Denmark- Jacqueline!! She's from Nigeria and is studying here in Odense! Her sincerity in learning the gospel is so amazing <3
Eating my most favorite pastry in Denmark. At last!! I have found the best pastry ever!! It's called a ''Julehorn,'' so it's a Christmas specialty, complete with Marcipan, Orange, and Chocolate!! I shout out to the film '' the Swan Princess'' as I ask, '' What else is there??''

I hope you all have a fantastic week, and A WONDERFUL THANKSGIVING!! I look forward to hearing from you all next monday!! 

Søster Soelberg

Monday, November 16, 2015

Vær et Mirakel til Dem Omkring Dig- Idag!!

We had a wonderful day in Church yesterday :) I had the opportunity to hold a talk, and I think that it went very well indeed :) It's amazing to me how we can come to the point where Danish just comes naturally, and while there were things I tried saying that didn't quite fit with Danish wording, I was able to find ways around the different grammar structure! haha, it was really fun :)

This week has been incredible in the miracle department! We have had SO MANY wonderful opportunities to jump in for a second into the lives of other people, and be that means by which God reaches out to His children. In many of the street and door contacts we have made, we have really had the chance to make a difference in the life of the individual we were talking with. One of my favorite contacting experiences(ther are really too many to list) from this week was just this past sunday morning- there are two wards here in Odense that meet at different times, so we don't have church until 14:00-17:00 ; that gives us a lot of time to contact outside in the morning hours :) So yesterday morning, we were out talking to lovely humans when we started talking to a man about how he feels about his own personal relationship with God. As the conversation progressed, his face lit up with the spirit, and we could tell in his eyes that he could feel the Love of God, which we strive so hard to let these people feel. A lot of people in the world believe that these Scandinavians are hard and cold people, but I have found quite the opposite :) they are actually very sensitive when placed in a comfortable situation, and what is more comfortable than on a wooded path by a river?? :) haha, thank goodness for beautiful scenery!!

I have found so much joy this week in going out and spreading good cheer- and I'm super stoked for this upcoming Christmas season in Denmark! The Christmas lights are all up (but not turned on yet), and New Years fireworks have already started going off! haha, these Danes sure do love their holidays! They go all out!!

Greatest Challenge of the Week:
  • Litterally like, 30 minutes ago- realizing that my little sister will be going to college with me the next time I step foot on a university.......Life is rough

3 Best Parts of This Week:
  1. Singing a duet with Sister Orr at the Single Adults activity on Thursday :)
  2. Testifying to a train full of people (like, literally standing up and explaining to mulitple people) the joy and love I feel through living the Gospel of Christ and Why on earth I'm giving 18 months of my life as a full-time missionary declaring the Gospel!
  3. Feeling the Holy Spirit testify to my heart bits and pieces of answers to questions in my heart :) It's always so great to come one step closer to understanding the big picture!!

Favorite Quote of the Week:
''Vi har kraft nok for at vælge vores ønsker, og hvad vi gør med tiden vi har.''

Playing UNO with the Sister Training Leaders (In total, we have [clockwise] sisters Landvatter, Ackerman, Mandla, Soelberg, Sorensen, and Orr) after Daily planning- if you look close enough, you can see the appearance of a christmas tree on the table, and a stocking hanging on the door :) we're getting the season started a little early!!

I hope you all have a fantastic Week!! <3 I love you all!!

-Søster Soelberg

Monday, November 9, 2015

Den niende Nov

Dags! I hope y'all have had a great week since you last heard from me :) because I sure have!! It's so amazing just how great one feels when healthy!! Remember to never take your health for granted!! And do everything you can to keep it up!
I had a great day in church yesterday, and I hope you all did, as well :) I don't have toooooooo much time to write up this email, so I'll just copy and paste what I wrote down yesterday during Sacrament-

''I feel like it's such a beautiful day today!! :) This morning, we headed out and contacted in a large, beautiful park for a couple of hours (because church doesn't start until 14:00). The sun was shining, and we had wonderful conversations with all of the lovely Danish people out and about for a walk! The opportunity gave me a chance to really count my blessings, one of those definitely being my chance to be here in Denmark! I absolutely love it, and I'm soooooo happy! And I'm even more grateful to be here in Church today ;)
[during the passing of the Sacrament] I'm want to know how on earth I can be better to ''always remember [Christ]'' in my daily life- how I can be an example of Christ to those around me! We are all here to help one another along our path, but how can we know what to do? What if I make a bad choice?
It really is an amazing gift to have the Atonement available every day of our lives, and to be our own agents and choose to follow Him. FAITH, AND OBEDIENCE, ARE CHOICES. It's all, 100%, up to us to work hard to strengthen our resolve, and to nourish and nurture the seed of faith within us all (reference to Alma 32).''
Just as Dallin H Oaks of the Quorum of the 12 Apostles said, ''the healing and strengthening power of Jesus Christ and His Atonement is for all of us who will ask.'' Help is just a prayer away! And the Atonement of Christ is not only for when we need to patch up and repair something we did wrong- the Atonement strengthens and builds us up to a level we never imagined possible :) God loves us so much, and he provided this tool for us to master our weaknesses and turn them into strengths- to help others and serve them, and in the process learn more about our eternal worth and the Love God has for us each individually. I testify of Gods Love and promise that as we learn more about our Savior Jesus Christ, and understand more about just what He has given us, we will come to love ourselves even more, and to be able to share that love with others :) BE A LIGHT!! The world is dark, but not if you're glowing :)

Sorry I didn't have a lot of time today - I really do love you all, life is just tooooooooo exciting to be cooped up in the library!! I hope y'all can forgive me, and enjoy these pictures from this beautiful city of Odense :)

Autumn is in full swing, and I'm loving it!!! :D remember to take some fun pictures with the leaves before they're all dead and gross! ;)

Sister Orr is a master with the camera!! She snagged this shot for you all :)

​I wood post a picture of me and some wood....... but that wood be weird, woodn't it? ;)

Have a great week!! Med kærlig hilsen,
Søster MB Soelberg

Monday, November 2, 2015

Kristi Kærlighed

Greetings ye citizens of the far away land called ''the Rest of the World.'' I Hope you have all had a fantastic week, and that you've been able to accomplish new goals and experience new blessings in your lives :) This life is a time for us to gain experience and understanding, and a time for us to learn more about who we really are and reach the Potential that God completely understands and sees in us :) One of my favorite things to learn and study on my mission has been the eternal and priceless worth of souls. Every single human being who has ever been on the earth, is here now, and will be on the earth is a Beloved Son or Daughter of our most loving and caring Heavenly Parents. We lived with God before we came to this earth, and in that time, we knew God, and He still knows us perfectly. He knows our desires and our ambitions. He knows and understands our sorrows and our weaknesses. But luckily, and thankfully, He also knows our strengths and talents, and provides ways for us to learn more about and appreciate ourselves. The Gospel that God has taught to mankind throughout the generations is given to us to provide Identity and Direction. As we learn more about Who God Is, we can learn more about who we can become. Isn't that amazing?? :) I think it is! I know it is! and I love it!

I am sooooooooo incredibly thankful for the Love that God offers me each and every day! The opportunity I have to learn and to grow and to change is of so much value to me! Sometimes it takes courage and trust, but we can make it! We read in the Book of Mormon, in the Book of Moroni, chapter 8 verse 16 that ''perfect love casteth out all fear.'' That perfect love that Christ has for us, and that we can have towards Christ, enables us to do anything and everything without being paralyzed by fear.

Yesterday, we had an amazing Fast and Testimony meeting. In the meeting, one of the young adults in the ward, Anne, bore her testimony on the importance of being in tune to the Spirit of God. She told a experience/story as an analogy: She overheard some missionaries discussing among themselves in English, and as a Dane, she was usually resolved to answer back in Danish (it's very nice when they do this- so helpful!! (: ). But on this occasion, she joined the conversation, speaking in English. The missionaries were caught off guard and missed all of what she said, because they weren't expecting her to respond in English. Anne likened this to the way that we can receive answers from God- often times we will receive and answer to a question, but because we are not expecting to be answered in a specific way, we can miss the answer itself!
May we all have the courage and faith to keep our ears, minds, and hearts open to all of the whisperings of the Spirit. Sometimes, one may feel as if his answers are not being heard and answered, or her answer may seem completely off topic and out of application- but God always answers perfectly according to what we need!

This past week has been a struggle for me. I was ill and inside all week long with brief moments of going outside and being able to work. Wow was that rough and I hated it! But at the same time, I am also very grateful for the opportunity to have a short pause. I tried to focus my attention on what I could do inside that would help me be even more prepared to do what I needed to outside- and while I'm still figuring out all of the lessons I have learned this week, I am growing so much! God works in mysterious ways!!! haha, and I know He does the same to you!

This morning, as I was trying to figure out waht to write about (because let's be honest, nothing super exciting happened this week while I was indoors healing), I was suddenly bombarded with TONS of topics to write about. But then Sister Orr reminded me of the sweet testimony of Anne, and I felt inspired to share that today. I hope I was able to explain the thoughts and feelings of my heart correctly,and that someone looking at this can feel my love and appreciation :) I love you all, and I'm thankful for the love you all show me :)

I don't have any pictures of this week, so I'll leave y'all with one of my favorite quotes, from C S Lewis:

"Isn't it funny how day by day nothing changes, but when you look back, everything is different..."

I hope you all have a great week, and that you will find those small whispers of the Spirit, and do all you can to follow those promptings. I testify that God knows and Loves you, and that you can know Him just as well :)

-Søster Morgan Soelberg

an old picture of the sunrise a couple of weeks ago :)