Thursday, March 31, 2011

Elder Jepsen - Elder Jepsen is IN THE HOUSE!!!

Elder Jepsen is IN THE HOUSE! Our son is HOME and soon he'll be back to being Lee. I am so happy!!!!



Elder Jepsen - Flight QI 407 was CANCELLED - New Flight QI 409




In the picture: Jennifer, Elder Jepsen (Lee), Dana, Eric and Paul. 
Photographer: Brittany (sadly missing in the picture or it would be more complete).


Elder Lee Jepsen arrived in Copenhagen Airport on schedule this morning and is now in Copenhagen reuniting with his brother Paul (the second Elder Jepsen in the family), his sister Jennifer, meeting his all new sister in-law Brittany (who sponsored him with fabulous Buffalo Jerky while still on his mission), his other brother Eric (an aspiring Elder Jepsen number four) and a family friend, Dana. A WONDERFUL bunch of people, makes your heart feel good!


The next connection, Flight QI 407 was CANCELLED, giving Lee more time (for visiting) in Copenhagen Airport before continuing on to home. Our son will instead be on Flight QI 409.



Departure Information

Airport:Copenhagen Airport
Scheduled:1:20 PM
Arrival Information
Airport:Billund Airport
Scheduled:2:05 PM

We are of course EXCITED to soon have our son back!

Joseph Smith: The Prophet of the Restoration



Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Elder Jepsen - Mission Entry 102 - Thank You All and Thanks to God for the BEST Two Years!

As the remaining couple of days of my mission are running out of time at an almost frightening pace, I want to thank the many people behind my efforts. I have felt the strength, comfort and inspiration of your prayers and read your words of encouragement. It has lifted me and held me up when I have felt discouraged and it has left me stronger to know that you, your thoughts and prayers all were here with me through the tougher bits. Thank you!


My mission has been a wonderful two years, where I have been privileged to see the gospel in action. I would do it all over again if I was moved back in time and had to choose again. But, contrary to popular opinion, a mission is not two years of feasts, sunshine and non-stop success. I am not a highly skilled teacher, presenter or diplomat and many times my efforts have seemed feeble and insufficient if not for God, my Heavenly Father continually teaching, embracing and comforting me with His Holy Spirit. He was there for me and the people we were attempting to teach and once He taught them they knew in their hearts that His Spirit was there for them also.


Perhaps somewhat due to my early US visa troubles and Trans-Atlantic transfers I have had the opportunity to serve with many companions in a bigger variety of circumstance, totaling seventeen companions! But, this has allowed me the privilege to experience and learn from a wide diversity of personalities. Growing up I didn't always agree with all my siblings (two brothers and a sister) all of the time, I had the opportunity to learn to get along. Going on an a mission I didn't always agree with my missionary companions and again I was given the opportunity to learn to get along. If this was easy I would not have grown and I wouldn't have learned as much but with most of them, getting along was easy--leaving us room to focus our learning and attention elsewhere. I have found something valuable that I needed to learn from every single one of my companions.


I wish I could blame the harder times on mission on others but I can't. I wish I could excuse times with lack of success on my companion, the area or Satan for that matter but I can't. One thing that I have tried to improve on and that I am still working on, is taking the responsibility for things that happen. Out of all the factors that play in all things that I have been a part of, I have been the only one that I have been able to change. I can't choose my circumstances but I can choose to do as much as I am able and I can choose my attitude. Good choices are sometimes harder to make than easy choices and I have yet to get a lot of things right. I am sure my Heavenly Father still has a few lessons in store for me.


It is difficult describe the feelings, all that I have learned and experienced on my two years as a missionary in just mere words, it seems nearly impossible. But, first and foremost I want to express my gratitude: I am grateful for my mission and I love it. I wouldn't trade it for anything. I am grateful that my Heavenly Father deemed me worthy enough to serve, trusted me to share His words of comfort with the people seeking and needing Him, people dear to Him. I have a lot of gratitude for these last two years especially to my awesome parents who have helped me with tremendous effort to keep this one little missionary going. I could not have done this alone. I am grateful That God loves me enough to test me, put me through what's needed for me to learn and to use me in His service.


My mission has turned out to be something I would never had expected. Looking back, I'm not quite sure what I could or did expect but it has definitely proven to be a series of unexpected events, shaping me and serving to make my mission a success. Like so many other missionaries experiences, my mission has been guided by the hands of the Grand Architect, helping me reach for my potential as a person and a missionary. Having seen and felt His gently guiding hands in the lives of those around me, my life and mission, I know That He loves the people we find, the people we teach, the many people of this mission that I look up to and have learned from and He loves me.


I have learned that although I have lots to learn, I know enough to know that God lives and is there for us all. I know His gospel is true and real! I don't visually need to see my Savior to see His hand in my life. He has power to heal, mend and change lives and broken hearts. I know that God loves every single one the people on my path here, that their happiness will increase as they allow God, His words and sacrifice into their hearts. Thanks to God my Heavenly Father I know my Savior loves me and will help learn what I need to know and with that, I know enough.


Next week this time, I'll be home!
Love you all, always!


Elder Jepsen




Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Elder Jepsen - Mission Entry 101 - I Am Coming Home!

This week we haven't spent as much time teaching as we would have liked. Our car has been in the shop for repairs and we were suddenly reminded of the state of our bikes: My bike is barely functional, ready for retirement after serving me well for many miles of missionary work and Elder Messengers bike, well--it's nobody's friend these days, demanding more money and repairs. Missionary work is hard on bikes but they sure earn their keep!


Doing missionary work on foot and bike is a whole different story than sitting in a warm and comfortable car that you just point in a desired direction and go. Reduced to the inherent limitations of using shoes as primary vehicles of transportation (well, and sometimes bikes when repaired), changes our expected travelling radius considerably. Suddenly we have to postpone many of our teaching plans as they are widely dispersed on the map and focus on finding new people within walking distance. Consequently, we knocked on a lot doors this week!


I was wondering how the whole "Airport pickup" would work out. The Bishop was my first idea as well but the Pedersen's is an absolutely amazing idea. She's like my other mother, "Mother two" or "Esbjerg Mom," so it's perfect! Please let her know that I would love to do some fireside thingy when I get back home.


I got the flight plans a little while ago and it looks like I'll be in Kastrup for a short brake Thursday morning before my flight to Billund. I assume that you have the flight plans as you have obviously made arrangements with Marie-Helene. I was wondering if you could update Paul, Brittany and Eric, see if they have time to come and see me while I'm waiting in Kastrup--if they're not busy. Maybe my time will all get eaten up with terminal hopping but I just don't like the idea of waiting for what would seem like eternities to see everybody again! I miss you all and I am looking forward to see you all. It's difficult to grasp that I'm coming home...


I have learned and experienced so much these last two years and I have only one week left. I'll do my best to be as diligent and effective as I can the last little while I have left. I am just not sure what to think of it! I've looked forward to return home, see you all again and I am ready for it to happen but I know that I will miss my mission. I'm so glad I did it! It's the best choice I've ever made and truly the best two years!


Love ya. See ya soon!


Elder Lee Jepsen


Sunday, March 20, 2011

LDS missionary witnesses tsunami

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Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Elder Jepsen - Mission Entry 100 - Seeking the Voice of the Spirit

We received a text Friday morning about the catastrophic conditions in Japan and then we began hearing about it from everybody else. The pain and horror that so many people in the world currently are going through is far beyond my vocabulary and I have no words for it. I feel like nothing I could say would help these many people in their suffering.


But, I can pray that we as a civilization remember these people as our Brothers and Sisters and that we are the helping hands that God has given these people in need. I can pray that we all remember that we all are our Brother's/Sisters keepers, making us part answers to the many prayers and cries for God's merciful interception. I've already heard many miraculous accounts testifying of His helping hands and comfort when situations went beyond any human reach but we all have some reach and with reach comes responsibility.


I am sorry to hear of Boulder's aging, I've missed him. I am surprised how few people know of the Greater Swiss Mountain Dog breed. Well, I am looking forward to see and walk that handsome old dog again. Just Boulder, me and...        Don't worry, I'm not getting distracted and I'm not homesick! But, with only two weeks left of my mission it's probably nearly impossible to not think of those Danish shores, when writing home.


Our missionary efforts were well rewarded this past week and we had some good encounters with great people. I love doing missionary work but there is so much more work to be done. Being privileged with great leaders that I can look up to, surrounded by good people that I can trust and learn from, I am well aware that am not alone in this task. Yet I am not unaware that my responsibility rests on my shoulders. If I don't constantly seek God's directions in this and if I don't do the effort required to get the job done, I am still accountable for the opportunities given me to do so.


Looking toward the upcoming events in a few weeks from now, do you have any suggestions for how I should get from Billund Airport to home with my suitcases?


I love you and hope that you all are doing well!


Elder Jepsen




Saturday, March 12, 2011

Update on our Brothers and Sisters in Japan's Earthquake and Tsunami

The lives of many good people changed in an instant around 2:46 PM (JST) March 11th 2011, when Northern Japan suddenly faced a massive 8.9 earthquake followed by blackouts, fires and devastating tsunami waves as high as 25 feet.


The biggest earthquake to ever hit Japan has brought down communication services throughout Northern Japan and left more than four million people without power. People, families and whole communities have been displaced, lost or killed--while roads, infrastructure, buildings and homes have been destroyed.


As our thoughts go out to our Brothers and Sisters in Japan let's not forget them in our prayers and individual abilities. This is a time to use what powers and strengths are at our disposal to lift those in need.


The LDS Disaster Response Team at Church Headquarters is monitoring the situation and has been in constant contact with the Asia North Area.


Leaders in all area offices are on high-alert, working with local leaders to contact and ensure the safety of all Brothers and Sisters. While the Tokyo temple has sustained minor damage, temple housing is used to house church members unable to return to their homes.


Contact with all Mission Presidents in Japan has been established and all missionaries are safe and accounted for, many helped by the efforts of local members. The last two missionaries in Sendai were located on Saturday evening. Missionaries in Japan living along coastal regions have been moved to inland locations and President Reid Tateoka of the Sendai mission is in contact with the Area Office where all employees are reported safe. All members of the Asia North Area Presidency and their families are safe.


LDS Church: All missionaries in Japan safe:
http://www.ksl.com/?nid=148&sid=14700413


Video Courtesy of KSL.com


LDS Press Release - Church’s Missionaries in Japan All Safe and Accounted For:
http://newsroom.lds.org/article/churchs-missionaries-in-japan-all-accounted-for-and-safe



Families await word from LDS missionaries in Sendai:
http://www.ksl.com/?nid=148&sid=14687566

Video Courtesy of KSL.com



Japan Sendai Mission:


Police: Deaths in Japan's Miyagi may pass 10,000
http://www.ksl.com/?nid=235&sid=13460003

Video Courtesy of KSL.com




View Japan Earthquake - March 11 in a larger map

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Elder Jepsen - Mission Entry 99 - People's Lives Change as They Discover God's Words!

I'm pressing on, trying to accomplish what my Heavenly Father wants for me to accomplish in the small amount of time I have left to serve on my mission. While I realize that life is full of many important learning opportunities quite different from my mission, I hope to always remember what I have learned these last two year.


We had Zone Conference this past week, my last Zone Conference in the Mission! There is so much to say about this that I don't even know where to begin. Regardless of how much I would try, I could not even begin to do justice to the feelings that remain in my heart as I reflect back on people, whose lives I have seen change to the better, as they discovered the comfort, strength and peace found in God's words and learned that God is there for them.


I love you and hope that you're all doing well!


Elder Jepsen


Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Elder Jepsen - Mission Entry 98 - YES! I'm On a Mission... and I LOVE IT!

Elder Hoopes was transferred some weeks ago and now again our District was rearranged because of transfers. I really don't look forward to transfers at all, it changes my whole world around every time! I like the people I get to know around me, I just don't like goodbyes and I am almost dreading when I have to say goodbye to everybody some weeks from now! 


You learn to appreciate good food on a mission where the majority of meals rests on your own skills or lack thereof. I am so grateful to the many good Brothers and Sisters here that has kept us alive with wonderful home-cooked meals. You have been on missions and you too know how good food quickly becomes a precious commodity among missionaries. I can't wait to taste Mom's (and Dad's) cooking again. I miss Danish food! I miss Danish cheese, yogurt, Mom's bread, well--everything... and when I once again am back home with you all, I know I will miss everything here!


There is so much change up ahead and it's sometimes difficult to sort out my feelings about this particular time in life. I love the people here and serving God is a very gratifying experience as you see people's lives change when they recognize that God is indeed there, in their lives! I love it here and yet there is so much that I love at home and I also look forward to all the things I am to learn next. I miss you all at home but I am also going to miss everybody here and it's difficult to not feel a little torn up about it.


I love you!


Elder Jepsen




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