Friday, August 21, 2009

Elder Jepsen - Mission Entry 023 - This is it, I AM HERE now--in MINNESOTA!

This is it, I am here now--in Minnesota! I'm finally here! It took a while but I got here and I arrived in style with everyone waiting (our flight was delayed because of a tornado raging in the south of Minneapolis). It was pouring down with rain when I came and I felt welcome and right at home! It's been "bad" weather ever since! I love this place!

Today has been pretty intense and it's been quite the experience. We had some trainings and info meetings just to make sure we knew what was going on. I still really haven't seen much of the states yet as I've only been at the MTC and the Minnesota Minneapolis Mission Home.

A couple of hours ago we had the meeting where we found out where we were going and who we were to serve with. The way this happened was by seating all the new missionaries with their not yet assigned trainers in a big circle. This was approximately fifty plus elders and six sisters. President and Sister Howell then in turn read the letters that our parents sent describing us, what we did and who we were before our missions (slightly edited for our privacy and protection), so that we all knew all we ever wanted to know--and them some about each other, before going to work. Then we were assigned a companion and an area. I already knew where I was going, as the Spirit had confirmed it to me the day before. The peculiar thing about it was that I just used a lot effort and time just to get to Minnesota. . . and then they go and deport me to Thunder Bay, Ontario (and yes, that is the Ontario in CANADA)! I finally get to Minnesota and then I'm off to Canada. Wonderful, this is all just one adventure after another. Mission travel and transfers usually happens on "Prep-Day" (the very day where I write my mail, shop for groceries and do my laundry). Please don't get dissapointed if that means no mail next week.

While it might sound ironic to go through all the visa problems to go to the US and then they send me to Canada, the country where I was born, does not at all mean that I am not excited. I AM THRILLED and way EXCITED to go up there! It is not unsual for missionaries who go to Thunder Bay to STAY up there for around six months, so they might not be expecting to see me down here again for a while. This means that I might be celebrating Christmas in the frozen north of Thunder Bay! YES! WOOOHOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO! My chances for a WHITE CHRISTMAS just went up by SEVERAL percentage points! I wonder how one might bicycle in DEEP snow?

I have a bike, do not worry! Which is pretty lucky since a lot of the required mission gear ate up what I originally had intended for a mission bike. But, the Lord knows what is going on and He's got His finger on the pulse. A missionary who had just arrived shortly before me got really sick and had to return home, so he and the Lord decided that his missionary bike could still serve the intended mission, carrying an Elder around the Minnesota Mission. His last wish before returning home was that his fancy new bike should be donated to a missionary who really needed it (ME). This whole mission is becoming a continuos line of answers to prayers as my being on a mission itself is an answer to prayer.

I feel blessed beyond belief as the Lord IS taking care of me every step of the way (lucky thing to be in the Lord's service, He knows a lot of people). While on the subject of blessings, I received this BIG BOX from Anita when we all arrived, it was the BIGGEST BOX there! THANK YOU, THANK YOU & THANK YOU, Anita! You sent me so much nice stuff, towels, bedding and everything I could need and didn't have yet! I feel so spoiled, I will send you a more personal thank you, as soon as they let me! It has been my experience that it is really difficult to find time for more than these e-mails, so please don't be dissapointed if it takes me some weeks (it doesn't mean that I am not grateful), but there is so much to do out here and I have so little time to do it. Much too soon this mission of mine will be nothing but a memory. But from what Mom has already told me about you, combined with the care you put into sending me the items so desperately needed, you are a true Saint and way ahead of me in understanding my situation. That you are one of my mom's friends makes you part of very select group of people that I think all are a lot like my mother and that makes you a GREAT person, THANK YOU again. It's almost like discovering, that I have yet another mother out there caring for me. In the meantime you and a constantly growing list of good people will be in my prayers.

I love you all, every one of you!

Elder Jepsen

My new mailing address:

Elder Lee E. Jepsen
Minnesota Minneapolis Mission
5931 West 96th Street
Bloomington MN. 55438-1715

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