Portland, Oregon Temple

Portland, Oregon Temple
Portland, Oregon Temple

Monday, April 20, 2015

Sister Magnusson's Last Day in the Mission

After 18 months of looking at this missionary board as we eat our family meals, we will have Kristine sitting at our kitchen table eating our meal together in person  tomorrow, April 21.  We look forward to picking her up at the airport.  
You are all invited to attend our Sunday service on Sunday May, 10 (Mother's day) to hear Kristine speak about her expereinces of bringing her brothers and sisters from Portland, Oregon to Christ.  The services will be at the Duarte Building at 1452 Royal Oaks Drive, Duarte, CA.  The services start at 10:00 am.  

Hey, don't have time to write an email but here parts of an email I wrote to my mission president this morning. I love you guys and I will see you tomorrow. I love you!

Hey President!

It's been a good last week. We were able to get a good number of visits in. We had a great visit to the temple with our investigators. The wife really liked the temple videos, especially when it showed inside the temple. She said her original notion of Mormon temples was quite unknown so there was a little bit of a negative connotation just because she didn't know much temples. She also liked learning how much of the community was involved in the building of the Portland Oregon temple process.  They liked walking around the grounds and we got to sit in the atrium for a few minutes. They said it was so peaceful and beautiful in there. The wife really appreciated being able to get a small taste of what the temple was like being in the atrium.
You can also see the video by clicking here

I had a good experience at the departing temple trip. I haven't really missed my family on the mission since I have been on my own for a while but it was in the celestial room I felt a deep yearning ache to see my family again and I got pretty emotional. I feel blessed that I haven't been homesick these past 18 months. I am really excited to see my family tomorrow....

Thanks for everything President! I feel so privileged to have served under your leadership.  You have changed my life not only for the present and future but for the eternities. Thank you.

Sister Magnusson

This is a post Kristine wrote on her Facebook page this morning:

On October 21st, 2013, (18 months ago tomorrow) I left the Missionary Training Center for Portland, Oregon. Today is my last day as a missionary for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Tomorrow I will be leaving Portland, Oregon to go home to California. It is impossible to accurately describe what it is like to be a Mormon missionary. It can only be experienced. I am so grateful for all my companions, the areas I served in, and the many hundreds of people I was able to meet in this great state. I know that Jesus Christ is my Savior and that the Atonement is real. I know the Book of Mormon and the Bible contain the word of God. I know there is a purpose to this life and in the life to come, and I know families can be together forever.

Monday, April 13, 2015

"My last email home."

Our goodbyes with our ward mission leader and his fam, the Smiths! They are going out of town this week and we probably won't see them before I go so we took some pics! 

Well family. The time has come. My last email home. Next Monday is transfers and I probably won't have time to email because transfers are crazy and they are taking away the iPad. Good heavens. It's so weird. You never think this day is never going to come. But it is and it's weird. My world is going to come to an abrupt and total change, a complete 180 in my purpose, what I do, how I think, and how I act. I'll still be me but my focus will just have a complete shift. It has got to bet he weirdest thing anyone ever experiences.

On that note….I feel like this week has been good. Of course there is all the ups and downs and crazy roller coaster of emotions all the time BUT over all we had some really good things happen. THE BEST PART WAS YESTERDAY AT CHURCH! So our investigators made it to church and the gospel principals lesson was on the priesthood. I was kind of wondering what was going on in our investigator’s head during the lesson because her first concern when we started meeting with her was about the priesthood. Anyway, the teacher asked a question for the class to answer and she raises her hand and bore her testimony of what a great experience it was to get a priesthood blessing last Sunday and it helped sustain her through the difficulties of the week! It was totally awesome to hear! It was like she was a new person speaking. It made my heart sing!!!!!!!! AND THE OTHER BEST PART was they texted us that day asking when we could go to the temple with them that week! HOLLA! Oh my gosh I CAN'T WAIT FOR THEM TO GO TO THE TEMPLE! I just know it will be such a good experience for them. They are taking the lessons to learn more about how they can unite themselves as a family and to get questions answers and I just feel that the temple is all about that sort of thing. Oh my goodness, I love that family so much! I still want to remain in close contact with them even after I go home. They even invited us to their wedding reception this Sunday! They got married last November but they are doing the celebration now because they said their wedding was a quiet courthouse wedding. Anyway, we got permission to go and I can't wait to go! It will be so fun! I can't wait to meet their families.

We had a good lesson with our other investigator this week. I think I've written about her before. She is in her early 70s and a born-again Baptist. She really likes Mormons and really likes Mormon missionaries but she isn't interested in hearing the lessons, but is willing to do a Book of Mormon study with us. Well, for this lesson instead of reading out of the Book of Mormon we felt impressed to read with her  "His Grace is Sufficient"  by Brad Wilcox in the September 2013 Ensign. So we did. She loved it! She has always told us that she doesn't believe in works but from what she has told us she totally does. Her notion of "works" and our notion of “works”— she believes them to be something different....but they are not. We gave her that Ensign that the article was in and she was all excited. She wanted to know how to get an Ensign subscription! She said some really good things were said in that article and it put the concept of Christ's grace in an easy way to understand. Uh, yeah!  She also said that she could probably share it with people. Please do!
This is a summery of Brad Wilcox's article that can be found here.

We taught our young investigator The Ten Commandments this week. She is such a rockstar. She is so solid in reading her Book of Mormon and Old Testament stories. That's super helpful because from that she already had a small background of who Moses was. She has a baptism date for May 9th and she is still solid for that date. Her mom is doing so good too. She gave a really good comment in Sunday School. She said that when she had a death in the family recently she was able to turn to a priesthood blessing instead of other harmful things to help her cope. That was so cool to hear!

We were able to have a lot of member lessons this week which was good. Some were more interesting than others. Like one older inactive lady that we visited basically straight up told us she doesn't want any commitments, doesn't want to read the Book of Mormon with us, she feels like she is super close to God, doesn't need to come to church or serve or read her scriptures (the scriptures stress her out she said)....BUT she really enjoys visiting  us and our "stories." So we can come over and share with her our "stories". Ugh. We still feel like we should see her because we will be only contact she has with the church regularly and maybe as we bring the spirit into her home her heart will be softened.

Well, I wish I could say more about these other member lessons but there is not a ton of time and I feel like sometimes writing these emails you just can't put all the emotion and stories and dialogue and the Spirit or lack of the Spirit, that goes on. You just really can't describe what a mission is like....truly. This will probably be the most unique thing I will ever do in my whole entire life. I am so eternally grateful that I have chosen to serve. I can not imagine my life without this mission. It is overwhelming that all of this will be over in literally just an instant. Just next Tuesday. Well, really next Sunday night because come Monday we aren't really going to do any missionary things, just transfers. Sister Thurber will get a new comp and I will go with the other departing missionaries to President's house for a dinner then I think all the Sisters will go to President Ward's house to sleep (he is in the mission presidency) then wake up real early to go to the airport and then fly home. Done. Wow. The church is true.

"The Standard of Truth has been erected; no unhallowed hand can stop the work from progressing; persecutions may rage, mobs may combine, armies may assemble, calumny may defame, but the truth of God will go forth boldly, nobly, and independent, till it has penetrated every continent, visited every clime, swept every country, and sounded in every ear, till the purposes of God shall be accomplished and the Great Jehovah shall say the work is done” Joseph Smith

 I love you all. I will see you  soon.

Sister Magnusson

Monday, April 6, 2015

Easter and General Conference

Doing service for Adam's Eagle project.  
We were sewing the last of his aprons.  

We had a ward Easter lunch/Easter egg hunt between sessions 
of General Conference on Saturday.  
This is a picture of the kids lining up for the egg hunt.  

A family from the ward made some delicious tacos for lunch!  
Authentic stuff.  Dad would have really like them.  

The Joys had us over for lunch on Sunday and made us a nice little Easter Treat!  

Today we went downtown with the Beaverton Sisters!  
Sis Branchini, Benson, and Halogen.  

Sister Benson and Branchini were MTC companions as well.

We went to the Keep Portland weird sign,

Powells Bookstore,

the Food Carts, 
and Vodo Doughnuts.  

Family! How is it going?! 

This morning we went to downtown! I always thought it would be fun to serve downtown amongst the craziness . One of the Sisters we were with, Sister Halgren, served there for her first area. She said it was a lot of fun! It was good to hang out with Sister Branchini too! 

This may have to be a quickie email. 

The miracle of the week award go to our investigators couple.  Their hearts have very much been softened these past couple months and the lady accepted the offer of getting a blessing. The blessing was such a good experience for her. The spirit was so strong. They also watched the Sunday morning of General Conference. Oh my goodness, Sister Wixom's talk was PERFECT for them! I'm so glad they watched THAT session because it was those talks that they needed to hear. Our lesson with them earlier this week was a pretty cool miracle too! So I can't remember if I wrote to you  last week about our investigator's concern about receive the Holy Ghost after she is baptize because she said she has been feeling it strongly for most of her life as long as she was living worthy of it. Anywho, we did our homework and talked to a convert in our ward to get her opinion on things and guess what?! Revelation was flowin'! It was really helpful to talk to the convert because she said that was a really big hang up for her when she was investigating. She said ultimately it just came to a matter of prayer and she asked Heavenly Father if this was what he wanted her to do because she didn't understand this principal.  She really liked other doctrines of the Church like eternal families. She got her answer to be baptized and everything worked out for her. Well, when we went to the lesson, she kind of already had her question figured out in her mind. She came up with a balloon analogy that was really good! She said that we all feel the Holy Ghost in our lives, some more than others. The more we feel it, the more our balloon is filled.  She said people like her have their balloon already pretty filled but when they are baptized it just gets that much more air and even MORE FILLED YES! We loved her little analogy! 

We had a really good lesson with our ten year old investigator. She is on like chapter 25 of the children's Old Testament Stories and can't remember how far along in the Book of Mormon Stories but she is understanding it pretty well! We talked 1 Nephi 3:7 and kind of the background of it all and she totally got it! They were so excited to watch conference and see MODERN day prophets! Her mom is doing awesome too! 

Mom, I just wanted to thank you for always inviting people to our house to watch conference. This whole week it feels like we were making the awkward calls to ask people to ask other people to watch conference at their house. What a difference it makes to watch conference with other members in their home. . So, thank you.

K, sorry. Told ya it was going to be a short one. Got things to do! I love you all! The Church is true! 

Sis. Magnusson

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Happy Birthday! Please pass the cake.

Birthday cards for the birthday missionary

Street contacting in the woods.
 j/k It's a paved path but it looks like you are in the woods.  

Birthday lunch with Elder and Sister Joy

Birthday cake

Birthday celebration

Birthday dinner with the Hatch family.  Sis. Hatch's father, President Swenson,
was the president of the Arcadia Mission when Sis. Hatch was a teenager.  

More birthday cake

The Westview sisters decorated our door!  

District meeting and we had more....cake!  

Helping at a youth's eagle project.  He was making aprons for some school cafeteria.  My skills I have learned making my curtains and pajama pants have not gone to waste!

Volunteering at the food bank!  We go every week.  
Does this picture remind you of I Love Lucy candy factory scene?

Zone Service at a u-pick blueberry farm!

It was such a beautiful day!  
I haven't been in that much sunlight in years!

Just call me snake whisper
Hello family!

Well it's a beautiful spring day in Beaverton, Oregon! First and foremost is the celebration of mine and Sister Thurber's day of birth! The senior missionary couple that lives above us, the Joys, took us to Applebees for lunch where I ate waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay too much food. Then had dessert after that. Then we went to teach  our investigator and the member's house we had it at had a surprise cake for us after the lesson. So we had more cake. Then we went to dinner, we totally we not hungry which was a real shame because the Hatches signed up to feed us and they always make reeeeeeeaaaaally good, yummy food. Then we had....more cake! And the Hatches invited our investigators too, so it was a lot of fun and the they had a really good time so that was good! But man, it sure was a ton of food. A ton of sugar mostly. First world missionary problems I'd tell ya....

At our district meeting, our district leader gave us more cake too. Whew-weee! I was just about ton with cake after that! But we so appreciated everybody that was so nice and kind to us on our b-days.

The next day was Sister Thurber's b-day and it was a day of a lot of finding....a lot of knocking on doors that weren't home or pretended not to be home. But then we had a nice dinner and mooooooooooooooore cake! We did get an appointment in with a potential investigator though. It was nice! Especially since we cold contacted her. We had a good lesson that evening with a less-active. We met with him for the first time a few weeks ago and there was not a whole lot spiritual discussion, more of a get-to-know-you, interesting conversion in interesting stuff he is interested in. Blah. We definitely needed more structure…. well, we decided this lesson was going to have more structure to it for sure. We decided to ask him if he would just take the lessons from us. So we go into the lesson, less small talk, and we just ask him what he wants spiritually in life (he didn't really know how to answer that, but I think I worded it weird when I asked him) and if he will take the lessons from us. He said not to long ago he took the lessons from the sisters but by the time they got up to the Word of Wisdom he and his wife (she is not a member) had a lot of issues with that, then he said the missionaries never came by again. Hmmmmmm, okay. We bore our testimony to him about faith and obedience and all that jazz on how he can receive personal revelation for himself to know if the Word of Wisdom is a commandment of God that he should follow and that could give him great blessings. In fact, we told him that is true for everything that is in The Church! We don't have to take anyone's word on anything. We can each pray to know and gain a testimony for ourselves! He said he has prayed but never received an answer. Well, you got to act on faith and faith is an action word. We read him Alma 32:21, 26- 27. I think he liked it. He seemed to get him thinking at least. We wouldn't commit to taking the lessons or reading the Book of Mormon or going to church but he said he wanted to read the Bible. Okay, well the Bible is the word of God too. We have an appointment with him tomorrow so we will see how his Bible reading is going among other things.

Well as you probably all know the new Easter video is out, Because He Lives. I'd tell ya, we were so excited for it to come out! When a new Mormon Message comes out, missionaries get so excited! I love Because He Lives! Each time I see it I get something new out of it and then I think about the whole meaning of Easter even more. When we show it to people I wanna be like, okay, now let's watch it again and see what else you got from it. Or now let's watch Because of Him because that has a very similar message and I get something new out of watching that one too.
He Lives 
You can also view the video by clicking here

Because of Him  
You can also view the video by clicking here 

We met with our Born Again Baptist investigator this week and she really liked it. She says our church always makes good videos. Speaking of that investigator she really liked 1 Nephi 8 about the tree of life. She isn't willing to take the lessons but will do a Book of Mormon study with us. She wanted to keep reading to see what happened but we had to go but we told her she could DEFINITELY read ahead on her own. In fact, we encourage it. She said, "You know what, the Book of Mormon isn't too hard to understand once you get into it." Nope, it's not! Well, at least till you hit the Isaiah chapters.

Mid way through last week one of our investigator’s mom told us about a death in her family and it was a really sad one. Well, all deaths are sad but this particular circumstance was really not a good one. We asked the mom if she wanted a blessing and she said she hadn't gotten one for about maybe 20 plus years. We were so proud of her when she accepted to have a blessing. Some beautiful things were said in there. The mom has gone through so much and Satan is trying so hard to bring her down, but she is fighting to keep her faith! Anyway, she came to church yesterday and a few hours afterwards she texts us and tells about a very sacred, special experience she had in Sacrament meeting. I started bawling as I was reading the text. It was such an answer to our prayers for her and I know to her prayers. It just makes you feel so good because you love all of these people so much and you work so hard for them and you just want to do everything for them to have them gain their own testimony but a lot of the time you don't see the outcome of what you have done with them in the short time you are there. But seeing her testimony grow so strong even in the mist of adversity has just been so amazing to witness.

Alright family! I'm going to call it quits on this email for now! Thanks for being awesome and thanks for all the cards, and money, and granola! I so appreciate everybody's support! And Sister Thurber loves her granola too!

The church is true! Don't forget to watch conference next weekend!

Sis. Magnusson

I figured if I look like Saquatch, aka Bigfoot, people would want to talk to us because people here are obsessed with Sasquatch.