Monday, January 27, 2014

Goodbye January

Kjære alle,
Haloooo! Right now, I wish I had all of you here to complete my fairy tale of a snow globe world I am living in. It has not stopped snowing since the last time we talked, and the sky is constantly a mysterious gray-purple color with no traces of sun. I am hoping that February will promise some sun, but I heard that I will have to wait until April. We will see I guess! Other than the sunless sky, I am continually amazed at the beauty of this place! It seems so surreal on the most normal of days. Words cannot even describe. I guess you will just have to come see it for yourself!
The beginning of February also means that transfers are soon. Next sunday is 'transfers call' when President Evans tells the whole mission who is moving and to where. I am almost certain that Søster Pyne is getting transferred since she has been in Oslo for 5 months and with me for almost 3! I am so sad about that, but know that we can't be together forever...
Oh, I almost forgot! February first is good ole mama and papa's wedding anniversary. Congratulations you two, you still love each other! Seriously though, thanks everything you both do as parents to us four and especially for me!! Keep doing what you're doing, you got another 50 mortal years to go!
None of our investigators came to church this Sunday, bummer! It is always disappointing when they don't come to church or follow through on their commitments, but I just have to remember that they have their agency too! We have a new investigator named Anton and he is from Iceland! Did you even know people lived there? haha. He is so neat! He is 26 and loves the Bible. He is so interested in the Book of Mormon and just finding the TRUTH! We have not been able to get a hold of Gustav this week which is disappointing, but we will continue to try! Teaching is probably my favorite part of being a missionary. It is so fun to get to konw all kinds of people and teach them about God's plan for them. Watching the fire in their eyes get lit is so rewarding to me.
Last night, we were coming home from an appointment with our investigator Monika and we got on the wrong T-bane (subway). We figured it out quickly and was able to get off and change to the right one. It probably put an extra 10 minutes on our travel, so it was not too bad. Well, once we got to our stop Søster Pyne noticed a man walking right in front of us on the sidewalk and questioned if it was one of our investigators we haven't been able to contact. Sure enough, it was Svein! We caught up to him and starting chatting on the street. He apologized for not being in contact with us and blaimed it on his busy-ness. We asked him where he was headed to and he said the Pentecostal church service, and then he invited us to come with him! Long story short, we went with him, and it was the craziest thing I have ever been to! Good crazy. First of all, their church has a beautiful starbucks-like cafe in it. (who wouldn't go to church?!) Their 'chapel' was more like an auditorium and reminded me of being at byu. The first 30 minutes of the service was a full on concert. Lights, live instruments, and beautiful voices. Not a gospel choir though, it was a bunch of young, hipster Norwegians sinGing about Jesus in a Mumford & Sons kind of way. I was loving it, and was disappointed there wasn't a CD to buy afterward! haha. Having said that, it was more like a social event than church. It was a good experience, and we were able to schedule a meeting with Svein for this week! God works in myserious ways I guess!
Last thing, I was reading President Packer's October conference talk this morning and loved the simple straight forward council he gave. He tells us that the Scriptures are the KEY to spiritual protection. There is so much bad in this world, but amid the evil we have something SO good to learn from and to protect us. In his words, 'The scriptures teach us where to go and what to do. They offer us hope and knowledge. Make scripture reading a part of your regular routine and the blessings with follow. The gospel teaches us to be happy, to have faith rather than fear, to find hope and overcome dispair, to leave darkness and turn toward the light of the everlasting gospel. Peace can be settled in the heart of each who turns to the scriptures and unlocks the promises of protection and redemption that are taught therein.' SO POWERFUL!
Thank you as always, for your incredible support and love. I sure do love you!
Med vennlig hilsen, 
Søster Frampton

Monday, January 20, 2014

High Five

Min kjære familie og venner,
Hei hei! I hope all of you are keeping warm where ever you might be. It has been COLD in Oslo this week, and I don't see any signs of that stopping any time soon. Seeing my familys' pictures in Hawaii today made me SICK! I have not seen sun like that since October! I have been singing 'The sun will come out tomorrow' for the past month.... Maybe someday it will actually happen! It is hard to be the sunshine when everything and everyone is so gray. It actually gets to be a bit draining, but I pray that I can avoid the grayness to get to my heart! Luckily the snow continues to fall, so I continue to feel like I am living in a snow globe. I really cannot complain about that.
Our investigator Gustav is doing great! He came to church yesterday, and we gave him a Doctrine & Covenants and a Pearl of Great Price to read. Knowing him, they will be completely read by tomorrow. He continues to be a sponge trying to soak up all the knowledge we give him, and for that reason, I really love teaching him. He has not committed to a specific baptismal date yet, but we are still working hard to get him there. We are still teaching Umar, David, and Andreas pretty consistently, but they just don't want to make the gospel a priority in their lives. As much as we emphasize the reason and importance of the gospel, people still have their agency. But I am not going to lie, it is frustrating! We got two new investigators this week which seem very positive. We will be meeting with Monika on Tuesday, which was a referral from a member. And we will be meeting with Andrei tonight, and he is bringing a referral WITH him! Exciting stuff!
Sometimes it is really hard to walk the streets of the city and try to find that one person who is prepared to hear the gospel. It is discouraging when your toes and fingers are freezing and no one is interested in talking to you. Sometimes I think to myself 'What in the world am I doing here?' but what I seem to forget is that the Lord is on my side! Preach my gospel reminded me of that 'God loves you and all of His children. He is anxious to support you in your practical AND specific challenges. You have been promised inspiration to know what to do and have been given the power to do it. He will help you as you try to recognize and understand the spirit through diligent scripture study. He will guide you to people who will receive the message of the restoration. He will give you power to deliver the message and testify of Christ and His gospel. He will shower His blessing upon you through the gift of the Holy Ghost. He asks that you remain worthy of this gift and ask, seek and knock.'
I am still absolutely amazed at the beauty that I see everyday here in Norway. We were contacting in a large, popular park on Saturday and I could barely focus on actually finding people! The simplest things are the most stunning. There was a young couple with their three little kids just out for a fun and snow-filled afternoon. The mom and dad were on their cross-country skis and their kids slowly followed behind falling and laughing and wobbling along. The huge naked trees draped over the emaculate white powder and I was just standing in awe. I had to pinch myself to remember this is really where I live.
Well, this week I begin my sixth month of being away! It has actually gone kinda fast... I never thought I would be saying that. But, the work is moving along here. Søster Pyne is probably going to be transferred away from me on February 5, so I am savoring every moment until then. I am doing well, and I hope all of you are too! Have a great week! Love you guys.
Ha det godt!
Søster Frampton

Monday, January 13, 2014

The Ice Age

Kjære alle,
Halo! Wow the temps have seriously dropped from the last time we talked. Oslo is like a big freezer. And walking around without slipping every three steps is the everyday challenge. The snow, though, lightens everything up so I don't miss the sun as much. With the cold temperatures came the cold apartment. We have two small heaters in our apartment that are usually sufficient to keep us warm inside, but not this week! We were both bundled for studies and ended up turning on and opening the oven for some extra heat. I was just grateful that we had closests full of more clothes to keep putting on!
I started the Norwegian Book of Mormon for the new year, and it is awesome! The cool thing about Norwegian is that they don't have as many words as we do in English so the Book of Mormon is a lot simpler. It is a whole new book to me and it is wonderful! I sit back after reading a few chapters and I am like did I really just read that and get something out of it? I feel so lucky to be learning a language, have I said that before? It challenges a whole new side of my brain than I have ever used before. I don't judge people by what they say, because half the time I don't even know what they are saying! But really all I wanted to say is how grateful I am to be learning a new language, and completely relying on The Lord as I do so. 

Gustav is our most positive investigator right now. He read the whole Book of Mormon in three days! He asked where he could get the Doctrine and Covenants and the Pearl of Great Price so he could start reading those. How cool is that? We are SO blessed to have sciptures. As they sit there on our bed side tables I hope we don't let them collect dust. We literally have God's words right there at our finger tips!!! We are so lucky. We challenged him to be baptized yesterday and he told us he would pray about it!! I wonder what his answer will be. Daily miracles!
One of the questions that we get from investigators is that "If God loves us so much, why do people go through trials and hard times?" That was a hard question for me, but after studying about it over the past few weeks I think I have finally got a sufficient answer. In Ether, we read about the Brother of Jared and how hard it was for them to cross the waters in a boat with little light. But, the Lord was the one causing the wind, rain and waves. Even though they were suffering in the storm, the wind was blowing them in the direction of the promise land! Sister Reeves said,
"The Lord allows us to be tried and tested, sometimes to our maximum capacity. We have seen the lives of loved ones—and maybe our own—figuratively burned to the ground and have wondered why a loving and caring Heavenly Father would allow such things to happen. But He does not leave us in the ashes; He stands with open arms, eagerly inviting us to come to Him. He is building our lives into magnificent temples where His Spirit can dwell eternally. The Lord has a plan for each of our lives. Nothing that happens is a shock or a surprise to Him. He is all-knowing and all-loving. He is eager to help us, to comfort us, and to ease our pain as we rely on the power of the Atonement and honor our covenants. The trials and tribulation that we experience may be the very things that guide us to come unto Him and cling to our covenants so that we might return to His presence and receive all that the Father hath."
"No matter how well prepared you think you are, there are hills on the course. People cheering for you along the way are absolutely essential. We are never alone. Our Heavenly Father is only a prayer away, and the Holy Ghost is within whispering distance." -Sister Dalton
Each of us have many hills ahead of us, but the Lord is by our side every step of the way. This mission is one of those hills for me, but I am down on my knees as much as I can and clinging to my testimony of the gospel. You are all my cheerleaders on the sides of the course, and I really could not do it without you there. Thank you for your prayers and cheers! I could not appreciate them more!
Så glad i dere!!!
Søster Frampton

Monday, January 6, 2014

December 6th Pictures

Nytt år! January 6th 2014

Kjære alle,
Happy new year! Okay so yes, New Year's Eve was incredible. Looking over Oslo city was seriously a dream come true. I didn't get a New Year's kiss, or was I able to sleep in after staying up until 1am, but what I did get is a big, fat cold! As you can see in some of the pictures I sent home, all the missionaries serving in Oslo spent the evening at the senior couple's apartment. Around 11:30p we went outside as the fireworks were beginning to start. Everyone except for me grabbed their coats. I was just too excited and distracted by the celebration! So yes, I spent an hour on the balcony outside watching the snow fall and fireworks all across the city exploding. Did I mention that Norway has no firework laws? Yes, drunken people were lighting mortars left and right. It was magical, and a bit chilly.
Something I did accomplish successfully though, is the Book of Mormon!!! Wow, I do love that book a lot. It never ceases to amaze me. It truly is God's word and the most perfect book for the most imperfect life! ...aka my life! I have never had such a strong testimony or love for those 530-something pages!
This last week, we visited this perfectly ancient and Norwegian couple. He is 94 and She is 88. They are both walking around like its nothing... A few pairs of glasses and some hearing aids and they are as good as new! Seriously though, they are my favorite people in Norway. He was trained and performed as an opera singer his whole life. After eating with them, we went into their living room and he turned on an old record of him performing 'Abide with me' from about 50 years ago. It was awesome! What was even better though, was when Søster Pyne started playing 'Deilig er Jorden' and I nudged Brother Gaarder to accompany her. He popped up so fast and marched over to lean on the piano. I thought, 'No way is this happening.' What happened after this is too good for words to describe. His 94 year old lungs opened up and he sang an angelic opera performance that was even better than his 45 year old record performance! It ended with tears running down my face and a hug that probably wasn't allowed. It was an experience I will never forget.
Saturday, the Christmas celebrations finally came to a close. The ward had a traditional Jul tre fest, which is when they finally take down the Christmas tree. Almost 200 people were there, so that was really good for the ward, even one of our investigators came! The missionaries were asked to perform 3 Christmas numbers to bring American traditions to the party. We got a little carried away and put some special twists on Jingle Bells, Rockin around the Christmas Tree, and Rudolph. I have been involved in more musical numbers on my mission than I ever have in my whole life. Its not because I am musically talented by any means, it is just because as a missionary you can't say NO! Well, the party continued with the ward members holding hands, singing, and dancing around the Christmas tree until Santa came! He passed out bags of candy and took a few pictures with kids that were brave enough to sit on his lap. I sent a picture home, but this Santa looked like he could star in a scary movie! Ho ho ho!
I will end on an amazing experience we had with our investigator Umar this week. Umar has been searching for God ever since I first arrived here. He has been keeping his commitments here and there, but we really wanted him to actually progress. We had a lesson with him about how the Holy Ghost will communicate with him, and it was really insightful. We then got down on our knees together to say a closing prayer. We asked him to pray, like we always do in hopes that he would finally pray with us, and he did! He was very nervous, but said a beautiful, simple and sincere prayer. It went a little like this, "Dear God, I thank you for leading me to these fantastic people. Please help me to find the truth. A lot of time in my life I have forgotten you, but I know you haven't forgotten me. You know what is in my heart and I can't know the truth with out your help. Please help me to know you are there. Thank you. Amen." The spirit was so strong, it was almost tangible. Søster Pyne and I sat back with tears in our eyes and told him the feeling that was there was the spirit! With shaking hands and a fast-beating heart he told us that he could feel it!!!! It was at that moment that I was again reminded why I am on a mission. It is hard to be away, there is no argument with that. But it is the look in their eyes when they seriously find their Father in Heaven and feel of His love that I am so glad that I am here.
We are all human, and we are going to continue to forget simple gospel truths that have been testified to us at one time. But, I have learned that if you sincerely study and pray just a little bit every single day, your testimony will not ever faulter! "Conversion is not an event, it is a process!"
The work is working! Thank you for all of your love, prayers and thoughts!
Love you all,
Søster Frampton

DECEMBER 30th Pictures

2014 December 30th lettter

hello everyone!!

What a crazy week this has been. Definitely bittersweet. It was so amazing to experience Norwegian  Christmas and of course to skype my family, but the day after Christmas was a hard one! Thank you to all of the people who sent their cute Christmas cards!!! They made me feel at home, and they were so fun to look at. Norwegian Christmas was a dream. I literally thought I was in a fairytale the whole time. My favorite part was on Christmas Eve all of the kids hold hands and sing and dance around the Christmas tree until Santa comes! It was hard to be away, but I felt more Christ in my Christmas than I ever had!

Over the weekend we had a multi-zone conference with President and sister Evans. It was really great, and just the energizer that I needed! I was able to see some of the elders I was in the MTC with also and that was so fun to catch up with them!! After the spiritual meeting we played games for probably two hours. It was so fun to relax and laugh and mingle with missionaries I do not get to see very often. Transfers are also happening this week! I am still staying in Oslo with Sis Pyne, and I am really happy about that. I love her to death, and we have a lot more work to do before she is taken from me.

Yesterday was quite the day. Sundays always seem to be that way. But we got a text from one of our new investigators saying he started the Book of Mormon and didn't put it down until he got to Alma!! Unfortunately he could not make it to church, but our investigator Andreas did, and he brought a friend! Gosh, he is a pretty good missionary. Sister Pyne had to lead the music so I was stuck with two Norwegian men talking to me in their strange dialects about what the sacrament was. They thought the sacrament water was shots of vodka, because they knew the savior drank wine.... they were a little disappointed to just find water!I kept making eye contact with Sister Pyne on the stand and she was just laughing at me. Luckily, we made it through ok. Well the night continued to be quite hectic. President Evans wants me to practice driving so I can take a Norwegian driving test to get my drivers license, since some of the areas have cars. Well, last night was the night. We had an appointment about 30 minutes away, so we took the senior couples car and headed in the direction we thought it was. I haven't driven in 4.5 months, nor have I ever driven in Europe. Round abouts, people, trains, buses, and street signs in Norwegian make things a bit difficult. Fortunately for us, we made it to our appointment in one piece, and I was able to lay my head down on my own pillow at night, not one at the hospital.

This morning was another magical moment. We decided to run around 10:30am instead of 6:30am because we wanted it to be lighter outside. We ran a few miles through the peaceful city and down to the fjord. The sun was rising on the most beautiful sight I have ever seen. Ice chunks floating on the water and islands with beautiful Norwegian homes on them. I literally stopped and stood all amazing. This place never ceases to amaze. A picture would not even do it justice. A boat passed by as we stood on a dock and the water started making waves against the stone wall. Sister Pyne and I closed our eyes and imagined we were at lake powell in  the warm sunlight, instead of the cold. But I was still happy to open my eyes and find I was still in my fairytale. 

One of the things I have really been trying to work on is faith and hope. I have set a goal for 2014 to live in the moment, and not be doubtful about the future. With faith and hope I can know that if I am doing my part, The Lord will do the rest. Sister Pyne's favorite quote is "I hate to spoil the ending, but everything will be ok." It reallly is true. Afflictions, trials, doubts, worries are but a small moment. We can overcome anything with The Lord on our side. I hope everyone has set goals for 2014 that can help you become a better person all around. It is hard work to actually meet a goal, but the reward is so much better than the work to get there. "There is no growth in the comfort zone, and no comfort in  the growth zone." (thanks for that  quote dad)

Love you all, keep pushing forward.
Sister Frampton 

Dreaming Of A White Christmas

Kjære alle,
GOD JUL!!!! MERRY MERRY CHRISTMAS! I hope you all have a wonderful week filled with family, love, joy, and warmth!
I am so sick of eating! The members here have been SO kind to have all the missionaries over everyday, but they just stuff us! So. Much. Meat. But, it has all been out of the goodness of their hearts, and I really am so grateful everyone is making us feel so welcome. One of the members here told me, "its not about what you eat between Thanksgiving and New Year, its about what you eat between New Year and Thanksgiving!" haha! The members all gave us so many Christmas gifts at church yesterday, we looked like Santa on our way home. I love them all so much!
Well, I made it through the darkest day of the year! The sun rose about 10am and went down a little bit after 2pm. It was crazy! Luckily, the weather has been like autumn here so the skies have been beautiful! It is one of the warmest winters recorded here in Oslo. I can't believe that though because it is still so cold! We are hoping for snow on Christmas! It brightens everything up, and who doesn't want snow for Christmas?
This week was a very exciting one! We got three new investigators! All three of them are referrals from members, and they really just fell from heaven. Two of them are learning Norwegian/English from Søster Pyne and I, and also learning the gospel. Then the other one is just very curious about the Book of Mormon! The first lesson we taught, all he wanted to do was quiz us on the Bible. After we passed that quiz, he was willing to listen to us! After hearing the Restoration, he was full of questions and just so excited to learn all he could! He also invited Søster Pyne and I to go Samba dancing with him............ We explained the mission rules, and he made us promise that we would go dancing with him after our mission is over. haha! We are meeting with all three of them this week to continue to teach, and we are very excited!
We are going to a cute member family's house tomorrow for Christmas Eve celebrations. We are both really excited, because Santa is coming! Christmas is going to be great as well. I can't wait to see my family!!!!!!!!
Wish I had more time to write all of the amazing things that I see everyday. Hope you all have a fabulous week. Love you all!
Søster Frampton


kjære alle sammen,
Hi everyone!!! First thing is first, I gave my first talk in Norwegian at church on Sunday. Scariest thing I have ever done in my life, but I did it! And people actually understood what I was saying! I sat down afterward and just thought to myself "did I really just say that whole thing in a different language?" The gift of tongues is REAL! I am not learning/speaking Norwegian without the help of God.
Before sacrament meeting started, a young man walked in the church building that I have never seen before. He looked a little lost and I just happened to be in the foyer! Well his name is Magnus and he had ordered a free book of mormon on the internet a year ago, just out of curiousity. When missionaries delivered to him, he just wanted to read it and find out things on his own, so they left him be. Well Sunday, Magnus just decided to come to church for his first time. I snagged him and got to know him a little bit, then after church we taught him a really cool lesson. Magnus had read some of the Book of Mormon so he had so many really deep doctrinal questions! He said his first prayer with us and the spirit was so strong! We are planning on keeping in touch and then meeting with him after he gets back from Christmas break. We are seeing miracles! Our other investigators have tentatively set baptismal dates for January 18 and 25!!!!!!
Today for preparation day, we went to the Freia Chocolate Factory! (that is why we switched it to Monday) I felt like Charlie in Willy Wonka!!! It was magical. There was no oompa-loompas or chocolate river (unfortunately) but we were taught the history of chocolate, shown the production of all products, tasted way too many samples, designed OUR OWN chocolate bar, were taught the marketing strategies and all that jazz! It was so much fun. Friea was created by Johan Throne Holst in 1892, and he named the company Friea because that is his wife's name! Norwegian chocolate is to die for.
I have been studying the general conference talks and seriously love them! Octobers conference was so amazing. We are very lucky to be able to read words from our prophets so easily. One of my favorites I read this week was from Elder Soares "Be Meek and Lowly of Heart." He said, "Being meek doesn not mean weakness, but it does mean behaving with goodness and kindness, showing strength, serenity, health, self-worth, and self-control.... Christ faced extreme physical and spiritual suffering, giving us the opportunity to change our spiritual character and become meek like Him." I have really been trying to adopt this characteristic, as it is one I struggle with. I know that as we all resolve to become more Christ-like, however it may be, we will see Christmas through different eyes. As we focus on Christ this season, we can all give gifts of more eternal worth as well as the material ones! I have loved this time of year in Noway and am trying to soak in every Norwegian tradition that I can!
Really quick, I just want to tell my cousins and sister on a mission how grateful I am for them! Lacee, Alisha, Parker and Kevin. Love you all so much, and so glad to be doing this work along side of you! The work really is working!!!
That is all I have got for now! Cannot wait to see my family on Christmas! That is the best present I could ask for! Happy birthday Lacee on Monday!!!
Love you all,
Søster Frampton