Portland, Oregon Temple

Portland, Oregon Temple
Portland, Oregon Temple

Monday, October 28, 2013

First Week in Oregon

Just arrived in Portland  
At the temple with Sister Gill from the MTC District

  At the temple with Sister Gill

Reflecting pool at the temple

Temple grounds

I'm pretty sure Kristine is missing her sun glasses

Pretty Oregon

Doing service     
Washing windows

Me and Sister Newman

K, so I was getting really worried cuz none of the stores that we've been to had moose but, low and behold, I bought out Safeway's supply today.  Two for the price of one!  I couldn't even hold them all.  One fell as my companinon was taking the picture!

Sister Magnusson is one happy customer

Hola Everybod-EEEEE!

It has been my first official week as a missionary. I must say it has been an adjustment of training my mind to think like Sister Magnusson and not Kristine, but I am getting better at it.

This week has just been a lot of figuring out. Figuring out the layout of our area, figuring out who is who in the ward, figuring out less actives, figuring out people to teach etc. The ward members are so great. The ward is huge too. Like 500+....but with a lot of inactives. Lots of young families with little ones. Primary is 120+. Like everybody and their dog works for Intel. A lot of young couples straight from BYU starting their jobs that look like my age. But so many are missionary minded so that is awesome. This is the first time the ward has had sister missionaries so everybody is all excited. Especially all the single ladies and such cuz now they can have us over for dinner. The bishop is a Bishop Hatch type so it's great. So I'm living in Aloha but the ward also covers the town of Hillsboro and that's where we spend most of our day. There is a new development of townhouses that we spend A LOT of our time and a lot of members live there and it has the nickname of Little Provo. We've done all our tracting there. I must say I am not good at tracting at all and it is definitely not my fav. Sis. Newman is way good at it though. And we got three teaching appointments out of it! Hopefully they will all work out and the people just didn't set up the appointments to be nice. We've also been going around trying to contact potentials that the elders gave us. Most the time the people aren't home. Actually I would say like 90% of the time they are not which is suuuuuuuuuuuuuper annoying. We got to figure out the best time to do these things. Yesterday though we got some lists from the RS prez and clerk of people to visit and part member families and such. That will be good to make those visits.

I really like my comp. She has funny Australian words for things. She thinks its funny how I say pumpkin and parmesan cheese. Parking lots are called car parks and I must say the name of our game is to find "pull through car parks." It is sooooooooooo annoying always have to have your comp back you every time you get put in reverse. Like way annoying. So we always try to find parking lots where you can "pull through."

Part of our area is the country and we have lots of members that live out in the country. That part of Oregon is so beautiful. Beautiful little farms and hills and such. Everything so colorful. But man it sure is going to put a lot of miles on our car if we have to drive out there much. Like we had a dinner appointment with some members out there and they lived 13 miles away from the ward building. That was a 26 mile shin-dig we did. We get a 1000 miles a month. We weren't watching our miles this week cuz we got the car at the end of the month but starting in November we will have to be super careful with our miles. Our car has this dumb thing call a Tiwi in it. The senior missionary that is in charge of the cars installed it. You log in before you start driving so it knows who the driver is and it yells at you if you are going to fast, stop too fast, accelerate too fast etc. If you get so many warnings you can't drive anymore or something like that. So far its only gotten me going to too fast on this country road out in the middle of the sticks and I had no idea what the speed limit was. It must of been like 25 or something cuz it kept yelling at me for going 35. Cars were passing me on the one lane road and they were going probably 50. Annoying. Whatevs.

I'm slowing but surely starting to feel like a missionary...kind of. It helps that I'm almost healed from my annoying sickness from the MTC so now I can focus on others things rather than blowing my nose or coughing every second. It was also hard this week cuz we didn't teach this week but I think once we meet more people from the ward and figure more things out it will get better. Me and Sis. Newman are also figuring out how each other work so that's good. And like I say, it way helps that I'm not sick any more cuz I wasn't really myself when I was sick.

K, times up. Love ya alls. Think of you guys often. Glad Rachel’s move went well and lots of peeps helped!


Sis. Magnusson

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Aloooooooooooah from Aloha, Oregon

Well, aloha from Aloooooooooooooooooooooooha! Yup yup, I'm living in Aloha, Oregon right now. Although they don't pronounce it "aloha", as in the hawaiian word for hello, but they pronounce it "A-LOW-A". Weird.

But yeah, Oregon is way gorgeous. Like absolutely, positively gorgeous. It has been sunny and blue sky for the whole 2 days I've been here. The airport was cloudy when we came in but it cleared up.

Man, there is so much to say.  Sunday was good. I liked our devotional. Bro. Stephen Allen spoke. He is some MTC head guy. He was way good. Talked about if you still haven't cleared stuff up before your mish you probably should go home and clear it, then come back. But he said it way better. Then we watched an old devotional that Elder Bednar gave about "Becoming a Missionary". That was good. Then our district had our last prayer together and sang, God Be With You Till We Meet Again in our classroom. It was sad to say goodbye. I really liked our peeps. I was proud of our elders.

Went to bed around 11pm and got up at 2:30 to be at the travel office at 3:30am. We got on some buses to take all the missionaries leaving that day to the FrontRunner train to take us to the airport. Plane left at 8:30am. It wouldn't have been that bad but I have a cold so that didn't help things much. At the Portland airport Pres. and Sis. Morby were right there to greet us as we came off. We got some pics then we drove over to the temple. K, the Portland, Oregon temple might be my new favorite temple. So GORGEOUS! Oh my gosh, I love it! Maybe partly cuz it was such a beautiful fall day when we got there. And the houses and the long street to get to it is beautiful too....you feel like you are driving up Woodland Lane in Bradbury from Royal Oaks Dr. North or something. I love all they fall colors! Everything is so vibrant here! Even thought I've only been there once, Oregon reminds me of back east.....kind of. Like I say, I only been there once, but it kind of has that feel.
Portland, Oregon Temple
Photo by AngelaService.com
 After the temple we went to the Stake Center right by the temple for meetings and orientation and such. We also had a big transfer meeting. I was pretty much dying in the transfer meeting because like I say, I have a cold and my nose was just running like no tomorrow. All the new missionaries were sitting on the stand pretty much the whole time and I even had to get off to run to the bathroom to get more tissue.

Lisa, thanks for making me take all those Airbornes and vitamin C packets and Dayquils. I used all the vitamin c packets at the MTC.

I have a new companion:  Sis. Newman from Australia. She seems cool. Still haven't quite figured her out yet cuz she's quiet but I think she'll be a good trainer. We are covering a very large area. We are in the Farmington Ward and we are sharing it with some Elders. We are living in an apartment and it is waaaaaaaaaaaaaaay nice. Lisa, I kept thinking of you and how you live on like dirt floors with weird showers and toilet and such. We have all carpet (except for kitchen), big walk in closet, our own study desks, nice bathroom, a couch, lots of storage space, and a gym (oh and a pool too). Speaking of pool, Sis. Newman is also a swimmer! And she knows some people I knew from BYUH that were also Australian.

We had dinner last night with a cute young couple and their little kids. It was so weird cuz we just fed the missionaries days before I left in Duarte and here I was a missionary in someone else's house eating a glorious home cooked meal! And I was a missionary! AH! I even gave the spiritual thought at the end. Go me.

We have a car. I am the driver cuz Sis. Newman can't drive cuz she's not a citizen. Pray that I won't crash this brand new Chevy.

Mondays are our p-days but we are having our p-day today cuz yesterday was transfers. So me and Sis. Newman went to Winco and Kolhs this morning. It was so weird shopping cuz I totally felt normal cuz that's what I do normally is buy food and go to Kolhs but people kind of look at you differently and your cashier tells you "God bless you guys" and then you're like, oh wait, I guess I'm a missionary. Maybe cuz I haven't done a lot of "missionary things" yet. Like we are going tracking tonight and maybe after that I will feel more like a missionary.

I can't wait to go to church on Sunday and meet the ward. I met the ward mission leader and his wife yesterday (they both looked like my age) and they seemed way nice. Everyone just seems way nice here. And everyone dresses nice too. Like everybody seems like they are mormon by the way they dress...at least in Winco that is.

K, times up.

Love everybody!

Sister Magnusson

Kristine sent these pictures from when she was in the MTC.  You can learn about the stories behind these pictures on the previous blog posts. 

Me and my companioin, Sister Dittmar

 Me and my district girls in our dorm before gym time

Me and Sister Dittmar at the Provo Temple

The girls who are in my district

The elders who are in my district

 Check out how the elders are totally photo bombing this picture.....
It is pretty hilarious

Me and Sis. Quizon and Dittmar on our Sunday walk to the temple
 It was preparing us fo the weather in Portland

 The district

 The distict girls again

 Me and Sis. Dittmar on our way to do our laundry

Happy Birthday to our MTC Zone Leader

This here is Sister Magnusson with Sister Magnusson.  
She is from Salem, Oregon.  
I looked at her pedigree chart and didn't see any relation....
but maybe 5th cousins twice removed.  

 Me and Sis. Dittmar and the other Sis. Dittmar after Relief Society on Sunday 

 A sunny Sunday on a Sunday walk

District girls at the temple

Selfie Sunday

 Sister Magnusson

 My Branch President and his wife

The district with the Branch President

Portland, Oregon bound

I spent many moons and many hours in the classroom

Saturday, October 19, 2013

Last Letter from the MTC


Yo Yo!

Greetings from the MTC!  Thank you all for your Dear Elders!  I still haven’t had a p-day yet, so I haven’t checked any emails.  It’s kind of weird hearing from you guys cuz it’s like, man, life still goes on when time sort of stands still here.  I seriously have a 200 yard radius and that’s the only place I’ve been to for the past 5 days.  Oh wait, that was a lie....we did do a temple walk on Sunday for about 45 minutes.  So change that to a 400 yard radius.  It doesn’t even feel like I’m in Provo.  It’s like I’m in a whole other world....well, maybe cuz I am.  But life is great and grand. 

Talk about just learning and studying 24/7!  And boy, am I learnin’!  And you know what?  I seriously think I’ll be sufficiently prepared to go to Oregon after 10 and a half days.  We report to the travel office at 4:30 am on the 21st to do a straight flight to Portland.  Pretty crazy, man. 

Sunday was way good.  Had a couple of interviews with the Branch Pres.  He made me and my companion, Sis Dittmar, Sister Training Leaders.  Kind of like District Leaders, but for the sisters.  Basically that means we need to orient the new sisters that come in on Wednesday in our district, give them the modesty talk, love them, and report any problems to the Zone Leaders and the Branch Pres.  Fun stuff, man.  I still really like my companion and district.  I will miss the elders when they leave cuz they aren’t going to Portland.  We have a lot of elders in our zone that are pretty nuts, but ya’ know...a lot can happen in two years. 

But anyways, yeah, Sunday was good.  I loved Relief Society.  Sister Bonnie Oscarson, the YW General President spoke.   She did great, but my favorite part of the meeting was singing the opening song.  It was, As Sisters in Zion, but Janice Kapp Perry came to the MTC a little bit ago and changed the lyrics to the song to apply to sister missionaries.**  Anyway, with all the sisters standing and singing and those words were so powerful, I couldn’t even sing it.  I was bawling!
 My companion's dad is a Branch Pres. at the MTC so we ran into her mom at Relief Society and that was really fun to meet her.  I gave her a hug and I felt like I was hugging you, Ma.  Hopefully you got the email she sent you.  Later that night we watched an old MTC devotional the Elder Bednar gave a few years ago on Christmas day.  That was also really powerful.  Almost to the point it made me feel overwhelmed with my responsibility as a missionary and my personal conversion.  Man, wish I could write more, but time is out.  You’ll hear again from me on Thursday.  But you actually might get that email first. 

K, love you all.  I pray for you ever night! 


Sister Magnusson

**The Sisters of Zion
Words and Music by Janice Kapp Perry

The sisters of Zion are called to God’s labor

We willingly serve Him with spirit and might

We go to the nations with truth everlasting

We teach of the Savior, our Lord Jesus Christ

We thank thee, O God, for a prophet to guide us

We trust in His words and our purpose is clear

The angels of heaven are walking beside us

We’ll share our glad message with all who will hear

We go forth enlisted with Helaman’s Army

In numbers much greater than ever before

With power and spirit we’ll faithfully witness

The heavens have spoken, and truth is restored

To hear the song click here and scroll down to the end of the article by Meridian Magazine and click on the arrow by the speaker. 

Thursday, October 17, 2013

First Email From the MTC! YIPPEEE!

IT'S P-DAAAAAAAAAAAAAAY! All of us sisters in the district are very happy to be wearing jeans, to be doing their laundry and to write to our families.

Thanks for all your letters! Dear elders, emails, everything! Man, I wish I could respond to you individually but there is seriously no time. Hardly anytime on this computer.

The MTC is pretty awesome. I didn't know you could feel such a range of emotions in just a 24 hour period! First you're on a spiritual high, then you feel discouraged cuz you are doing such an important work and you are not perfect, then you teach an awesome lesson and feel on top on the world again, then you feel overwhelmed  cuz you’ve got so much to learn, then you feel better cuz your district or your comp says something to you that's nice, then you just feel an overwhelming love for everyone and everything, then you just get so tired you don't feel anything, then you go to some conference or training or something and you start to bawl, and then man....it's just all over.

But anyway, it's pretty great. We seriously are just in class all the time, either study or hearing from a teacher, or practice role playing, or something like that. I like role playing. I learn a lot from that. I am learning that sometimes I have no idea what I'm saying and I just kind of blab. It is so important to be in tune with the spirit. That is your most important companion cuz that's who will tell you what to say. But man, it's hard. And it's hard to instill to your investigators to have a desire on their own. Sis. Dittmar is great. She is way good at talking with investigators. i hope she is my companion in the field someday.

I really like my district. I think I've said that every time. The elders are awesome. They are way mature and they way want to do their best and try to do their best. It's one of the elder's birthday today. We sisters made him a birthday crown and tie. We'll probably give it to him at lunch. The other two sisters in the district and roommates are great too. Some of the elders and sisters in our zone are pretty crazy but I'm grateful that I have been bless with such a great district. I have pics to send but I have to wait till I'm in Oregon to send them cuz the MTC computers are way restrictive and won't let me download.

Oh, I'm on the main MTC campus by the way. There is a west campus and that's the one I think Mur was on.

I really like my teachers at the MTC. They know their stuff. They have taught me so much and I'm reading Preach My Gospel much better now. Remember when I was at home I had a hard time reading it? Well, now I actually have application and such so things jump out at me more and I actually learn stuff instead of reading and thinking well, that's nice to read.
Lisa, when you volunteered at the MTC, were you ever a TRC peep? Those are people that pretend to be investigators from the community. Some are real non-members, some are members, some are less-active, some are converts but you never know. Me and my comp were teaching this way nice Korean lady...probably in her late 20s. She asked some very good questions. She's probably a member but I think a convert. They say they tell converts to ask the same type of things they asked when they were investigating the church.

We are also teaching "Greg". Greg is one of our teachers but when we role play he pretends to be Greg, a friend of his that joined the church a little bit ago. He is hard! Me and sis. Dittmar get frustrated teaching him, but he is way good practice and our teacher that is pretending to be him gives us good feedback.

Yesterday, me and Sis. Dittmar did a little orientation for the new missionaries that came yesterday in our district. We were made Sister Training Leaders on Sunday. I wrote about it in my last letter home. Anyway, it's so weird to see all the new missionaries come in and know that that was us just a week ago!!!!!!!! So me and Sis. Dittmar and our Zone Leaders gave the missionaries a little tour and talked about some of the rules and did a cutie little get to know you gave and after the elders left gave the modesty talk.  Yippee. then we said goodnight to them before lights out.  Sis. Dittmar is great at that sort of thing.

I'm glad I brought my jump rope.

Some days we don't get gym time and since we just sit all day if I do nothin' I go crazy and can't focus. So I just get up early and jump rope right outside the dorm-room and do my wheel.

This is a picture of what Kristine's wheel looks like
 Although this isn't a picture of Kristine, 
this is what she looks like when she does her wheel.
It's great. I'm sure the other sisters love waking up to the tap-tap-tap or sister mag jumping her little heart out.

Today we get to go to the temple.   I'm excited about that. It's the second  time we get to get out from behind these walls.

I think I said this in my last letter, but time passes so weird here and it doesn't even feel like I'm in Provo.

I met a sister in the cafeteria yesterday going to the Arcadia Mission Mandarin speaking. I said she should say hi to my pa for me.

One of my favorite things that we did was on the first night we had like 30 new missionaries in a room and an "investigator" up front and we were all suppose to teach them. That was pretty eye opening and I learned a lot. We did three lessons. The first one I was convinced that the couple we were teaching were real nonmembers. They were so for real. But now I think they are real members but man, they were GOOD actors.

K, times up. Love you guys. I pray for you everynight!


Sister Magnusson

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

First Letter from the MTC


Family!  Hi!

Holy smokes, the missionaries here are busy, busy, BUSY!  I’m writing this in between random classes and such.  My first P-day isn’t till Thursday and that’s when you’ll get my first email.  But man, I’m learning tons!  Our day goes something like this....get up, study, class, study, workshop, study, role play, study, class, study, and then study.  Three meals are fit in there too.  Yesterday (our first full day) we didn’t get gym time.  I was crawling up the walls.  I was very emotionally and spiritually drained.  By bedtime when I was doing our companionship planning for the next day, I couldn’t even think.  We get gym time tonight and I’m way excited.  This morning I went to kick boxing with my comp and that was awesome to start out my day like that.  I was a lot more focused on our first study time.  Our first personal study time made me nervous cuz I could not focus at all!  But then our next study time after breakfast we studied as a district and that was supper effective.  I study much better in groups.  I did in college as well...funny how that works.  Speaking of college, a lot of things that I struggled with in college have come come back to haunt me in the MTC.....

About seven hours later

...Anyways, like I had a hard time focusing on what I was reading in college.  A lot of times if I’m not looking for a specific something in Preach my Gospel or if I’m not trying to answer a question in PMG, I’ll read something and I couldn’t even tell you what I read.  Or if someone from my district is up in front of the class talking about charity or whatever, sometimes I zone out. 

BUT ANYWAYS.......besides that I LOVE IT!  I’ve never been so immersed in the gospel.  It is literally apart of every bit of our day.   Except for sleeping, everything is focusing on missionary work.  Even gym time and eating.  Oh, and I had gym time a few hours ago and it was glorious.  The elders were sure being funny then.  But man, it is great.  It’s like nothing else matters and guess what?  Nothing else does!

I love my companion, Sis Dittmar.  She is 21 years old.  She is from San Antonio, Texas.  She’s a cross between my roommate Paris (in looks and how she speaks) and she also reminds me of the main sister with red hair in Errand of Angels.  She’s great.  She compliments me well.  She is way focused.  She knows the gospel.  She’s down to earth.  She is sincere and genuine.  The people in Oregon will love her. 

I love my district as well!  We are seriously so cool.  Four sisters.  Four elders.  The elders are pretty  mature.  They are way focused too.  They bring good discussion to the table.  We always eat together.  That’s fun.  The two other sisters in our district are awesome. too.  All the sisters are going to Oregon.  The elders are going to Singapore and New York.

Thank you, thank you, thank you mom, Rachel and Lisa for the Dear Elders!  Lisa, you are right about EVERYTHING!  It was so funny to read it to my comp. 

OK, wish I could write more but I probably spent too much on this letter anyway.  We seriously have hardly any time to breathe. 

Love you all!  Love the Mission!  I know I will love being a missionary in Oregon!

ps.  I leave the MTC on Oct. 21

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Entering the Mission Field

According to mormonnewsroom.org, one year ago there were about 58,000 missionaries serving missions for the Chruch of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints around the world.  Now the newsroom reports that we are approaching 80,000 missionaries serving in the  field.

We will add one more to that number because tomorrow Kristine enters the MTC  (Missionary Training Center) as she begins her service as a missionary of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

Last night Kristine was set apart to serve as a missionary.
Pres. Cornwall, Bishop Jaminson Kristine, Pres. Magnusson, Bro Blackburn, Pres. Steimle

A couple of months ago at the Worldwide Leadership Broadcast, the opening song was Hark, All Ye Nations.  It was sung by the missionaries that were attending the Provo MTC.

When I heard the missionaries sing the song, I couldn’t help but think about Kristine.  She would soon be joining the armies of missionaries that would be “teaching his holy word” about the restored gospel. 

 Click on the arrow to hear the missionaries sing
Hark All Ye Nations!
You can also access the video by clicking here

Hark, all ye nations!
Hear heaven's voice

Thru ev'ry land that all may rejoice!

Angels of glory shout the refrain:

Truth is restored again!

Oh, how glorious from the throne above

Shines the gospel light of truth and love!

Bright as the sun, this heavenly ray

Lights ev'ry land today.

Searching in darkness, nations have wept;

Watching for dawn, their vigil they've kept.

All now rejoice; the long night is o'er.

Truth is on earth once more!

Chosen by God to serve him below,

To ev'ry land and people we'll go,

Standing for truth with fervent accord,

Teaching his holy word.

Text: Based on German text by Louis F. Mönch, 1847-1916. © 1985 IRI

To read about and see the pictures of when Kristine received her mission call, click here.  

To read about how Mormon missionaries are assigned to the areas they are to serve click here.