Finland, Helsinki Mission

Finland, Helsinki Mission
Finland, Helsinki Mission

Tuesday, July 25, 2017

Exit interview.....

A nice sunset. Can I just make mention of how crazy it is that we actually saw a sunset! I couldn’t believe it, its been so long! 

Last district meeting of the transfer...and for some of us the last ever.
After getting caught in the rain
It has been a great week here and we have a busy week ahead. It is hard that some days we don’t have finding time cause we have so many appointments, but that is how is should be I guess. But sometimes I miss a good old door knockin’! Which brings me to the thought.... I wonder how many doors I have stared at…… Ponderable. I have my exit interview tonight (ahhhhhhhhh! that is a terror scream) because the Aurars are here for Zone Conference tomorrow and then we have transfer calls this weekend. It’s going to be a great one! The work is moving ever forward.

Meet the new mission president

The last MLC with the Watsons
Meeting the new mission president and his wife at Zone Conference

Things in Tampere have been great. We have had some fantastic weather and life has been great. We still wear sweaters, but summer is really here and it is just so beautiful. I have to take time every day to stop and just look at all of the beauty around me to try and take it all in. It’s such a beautiful place and I feel so blessed every day.

My week went well. We had exchanges in Lahti and it was on Sister Burden’s and mine 18 month mark. I bought a pineapple (so we could eat the fruit of our labors together) and when we got there she had bought one too, it was fantastic :) We had a great exchange and a great week of work. We had a man that we had a first lesson with and he committed to be baptized, and then he took his Book of Mormon on his work trip and read clear to 2nd Nephi. Yesterday in our lesson at the end he said, “What does God think about my smoking? I don’t think he would be very happy.” And then our member explained a little about the word of wisdom and we gave him a pamphlet and told him we would talk about it more next time. He texted us last night and said that he read the pamphlet and that he is going to start living it cause he knows the Lord will help and it is his goal to get baptized in September. We were just blown away. Also, we contacted a referral from the elders last Friday, he was a young YSA man and we invited him to church. He showed up! and he stayed all three hours and absolutely loved it! He is going tonight to our Finnish language hour to help teach. He is incredible. Miracles literally happen daily. I just feel so blessed to see the Lord’s work and to be a small part in it. So it has been a great week. 
Ilkka Olavi Aura, 54, and Paula Kaarina Tapola Aura, Espoo 2nd Ward, Helsinki Finland Stake: Finland Helsinki Mission, succeeding President Wayne T. Watson and Sister Luana Watson. Brother Aura serves in a stake presidency and is a former stake executive secretary, high councilor, bishopric counselor, institute teacher, and missionary in the Finland Helsinki Mission. Managing partner, Sequoia Partners. Born in Jyväskylä, Finland, to Urpo Olavi Aura and Pirkko Liisa Paasilahti.  Sister Aura serves as a seminary teacher and is a former ward Relief Society, Young Women, and Primary president; temple open house and dedication committee member; nursery leader; and missionary in the Finland Helsinki Mission. Born in Kuopio, Finland, to Anssi Tuomas Tapola and Kaija Annikki Rautiainen.
The Finns love to swim in the lakes

Monday, June 26, 2017

Summer Solstice and Veli R.....

(Veli means 'brother' in Finnish)

Veli R was found by Sisters Adams and Roberts. They were going through their ward list one day and there was a name of a member that they didn’t recognize. They noticed that he lived in an area that they visit frequently, so they decided they would just stop by. When they got there the building was locked, but someone let them in. When they knocked on the door a big Chinese man answered the door. It turns out that the member had moved away and that Veli R had moved there. So they asked him if he would be interested in learning more about our church. He first asked, "Is your church weird?" and they replied  “No.” He told them he wasn’t very religious and didn’t believe in God, but that they could come back. They scheduled an appointment for the next week, my first week in the area. Sister Roberts and I went over for our very first lesson and it was incredible. He was so open to listening and the spirit was so strong. He said he was willing to try to read and that the sound of a Father in Heaven was amazing. He committed to a baptismal date and said he would be in church the next week. He even said his very first prayer to close the lesson and it was the most sincere heartfelt prayer I have ever heard. He came to General Conference the next week, and said that even though he didn’t understand much of it he knew that it was good. From this point on, Veli R learned everything quickly, and he absorbed everything we taught him like a sponge. He started to read the Book of Mormon and loved it. He also told us he loved to pray, everywhere. He said people would look at him funny when he would pray in the sauna. J When Veli R learned about obedience he loved it. Any commandment he would automatically keep. When we asked why, his response was, "Well, its a commandment" and that was good enough for him. He is a great example. The ward helped so much, the p's would give him rides to church, Sister K would send him her favorite scriptures to read, and all the other members took him in and helped him to learn. Veli R wanted to be baptized to get closer to his Father in Heaven, and also because it is a commandment from God. The baptismal service went so smoothly. The Relief Society took care of the food, and all the speakers gave amazing talks. Veli B was able to baptize Veli R, and after Veli R came out of the water he gave a big thumbs up. He said he felt so clean and close to the Father in Heaven. Veli R obeys all of god commandments without question, he says if it is from God he will do it. He also is fearless in telling others about his conversion. He invited his friends to activities, has given them copies of the Book of Mormon, and even invited them to his baptism. He is always wanting to know more and to help more. When his mother came to visit him he brought her to all hours of church. He is a great missionary and example. I am so strengthened by the faith of Veli R. I strive to be as obedient to Heavenly Father as he is. It makes me realize how easy it is to share the gospel, because it brings us such joy. I am forever grateful that i got to be a part of this miracle. My mission and life is forever changed.

Moving day. Six suitcases in our car!
Summer in Finland
Taking care of the lawn with Sister Parker
Longest day of the year with the Jyväskylä sisters