Monday, December 11, 2017

Sie ist schwanger? Was hat sie gemacht?

Hëÿ,

To start you off on this pleasant P-day, I’d like to relieve you of your worries from the subject line of this email. If you’ve already translated it for some reason or your German is just taking over and you’re forgetting your English, you’ll recognize that the sentence means „She‘s pregnant? What did she do?“ That was a quote straight out of our ward Christmas party, ladies and gentlemen. A few of our legends were acting out the nativity with hand puppets with the kids of the ward participating. Well, Mary’s part comes on and the actor of Joseph (the true legend himself) says to the kids those questions, followed with an „uhh.....I mean....“ and before he could get another word out he had all the adults in the room weak at the knees; great experience.

Christmas is getting closer and closer and that’s great. We had a Christmas party with our fellow workers from the Tafel. We were a little freaked out, because we had no idea what to expect; eating at some random German restaurant (that looked more like a bar from the outside) in the middle of nowhere with a bunch of Germans. But, oh man, was this a treat. I was blessed with some really awesome tasting duck, along with Knödel and Rotkohl of course, and Elder Hillyard unfortunately got Grünkohl (cue Sister Stewart‘s classic „GRÜNKOHL??“), but he enjoyed it. One of the saddest parts was when we realized that it was all free, drinks and everything, and we hadn’t used our free refills to our advantage until about 20 minutes before we were done. Never making that mistake again. But once half of them were drunk and singing it got to be quite the show. Germans and their alcohol, man!

We were also „surprised“ at our Christmas party with the assignment to sing a song. I put quotes around surprised, because we had talked about it before that they might do that. Apparently it’s a German tradition to have the missionaries sing a song at the party. But luckily we were prepared and had gone over the words to „Jingle Bells“ beforehand. We were also pleased with the opportunity of meeting one of the greats this week; Stephen Sinclair. The man who created the legendary pie loving Elder Ryan Sinclair. It was quite a funny experience though, I don’t think I could’ve been able to count how many times this legend said goodbye before he actually left, quite fantastic.

Anyways, other than that the work is going great. We are just waiting on Georg’s papers to be finished then the legend can be baptized, Jason is still getting baptized on January 6th, and Richmond will come around sometime and quit letting our appointments fall through haha. We’ve also been doing lots of finding and spreading the joy of the Christmas season through the light the world initiative. Macht mit.


Peace out



district Christmas sons

ِگِندس (Persian Group in Hamburg)

Huh?


Elder Glenn Johnson
Kirche Jesu Christi
Heckengang 55
21079 Hamburg
Germany

Monday, December 4, 2017

Well that's not pretty

Merry Christmas everybody!

We had quite the week. Nothing compared to last week’s craziness, but it was still fun.

winterdom is good
We had a lesson with Jason again that started off not too well, but did a full 180 and ended with him deciding he’s going to be baptized on January 6th and there’s nothing going to stop him from that, so that was dope.

Georg is also doing quite well. The Rathaus in Wilhelmsburg was super classic and not open at all until today, so he wasn’t able to get the papers done to get married quite yet. But we’re hoping for about 4 weeks from now, we should be ready to baptize the legend. We also had a good amount of lessons fall through this week, which included one with Richmond, so that wasn’t very fun.

legendary poster at Richmond’s house

Other than all that, we’ve just been doing lots of finding and getting everyone to Light the World. We’ve had some super dope conversations with some legends about the real meaning of Christmas, and how most people forget what it actually is. We’ve found the perfect question for people when we talk to them on the street und zwar „What is the real meaning of Christmas to you?“ and that’s perfect BECAUSE, if they are religious, most of them would say it’s about the birth of Jesus, about coming closer to God all that good stuff...but, even if they aren’t religious, they will talk about how it’s about family and just being a good person in general. So no matter in which direction it goes, it’s always super possible and easy to bring it back to the #LightTheWorld initiative, which is great by the way. We’ve been trying to do something every day that goes along with the initiative and posting it on our WhatsApp story so that we can hopefully inspire someone to also try to Light the World.

cute Tannenbaum 

district pdayyyy

nice

You all do the same. Be nice people and love others—that is all.

Byeeeeeeeeee


Elder Glenn Johnson
Kirche Jesu Christi
Heckengang 55
21079 Hamburg
Germany


Von meinem iPad gesendet


Monday, November 27, 2017

Pastor Johnson

Instead of greeting you on this fine cold day, I’m just gonna go straight into our week because 1) the bock is running low and 2) the iPad battery is running lower. We had 3 big events this week.

Harburg Christmas Market is in Full Swing
First, we had Thanksgiving!!! We had almost no time throughout the day, but we didn’t let that stop us. We made sure to find a window of time to get some good meats and Thanksgiving feast ingredients. We also made sure we told everyone at the Tafel Happy Thanksgiving. Even though Germany doesn’t celebrate it, they are obsessed with all that happens in America so most people knew what we were talking about.

After our busy day, we were able to finally feast. We had country fried steak, fried chicken, mashed potatoes (done the American way), corn, and of course Mountain Dew. Even though we both know at home we would only be allowed to have water at the dinner table....dad..... But it was truly wonderful and we truly had the spirit of Thanksgiving with us throughout the day.


Thanksgiving feast boys
The next big event was Elder Hillyard’s birthday!!! I was able to sneak off on splits earlier and buy him a new basketball and give it to him on his birthday which was lit. We went and played some soccer where I was the second to last picked (classic), but destroyed nevertheless. Afterwards we headed to Elder Hillyard’s favorite pizza place and got his favorite pizza and enjoyed that.

Harburg Christmas market #birthdayboy
Then we hurried and changed and headed to Stade, to a fireside about baptism. Jason came with us, which was awesome. We had a good time there, the members sang to Hillyard, and we ate some cake which was fun.

As we got back in to Harburg, the suburb of Hamburg we live in, we realized the Christmas market is already up. So we decide to have dinner there and man did we have fun! There are not many better things on this planet than Christmas in Germany. We had some classic Kinder punch, and rode on the carousel with this 5 year old German legend who had not a single clue what America was—it was great. We then ended the night off with a legendary lesson with Jason.

Harburg Christmas market
Lastly, yesterday we hosted a mourning service for a Ghanaian member of our church. I was informed a few hours before the start that I would be needed to, „Preach the word of God.“ So, that I did!

The mourning service advertisement

Needless to say, it was something I’ve never experienced before and also something very cool. They mourned the loss of this member’s mother, but it was nothing like the funerals I’ve been to. They danced, they made sure they were happy and left no room to be sad—it was truly influential.

There were a couple more interesting parts, but we don’t need to get too into that. These people really love God though. It’s awesome!

All in all, we had quite the week. Not enough time to write it all, unfortunately. We had some freaking bomb churros today.


I don’t think I can begin to describe how excited we are for Christmas and how well it’s done here in Germany. But for now, the bock and my batteries almost on empty, sooooooooooo bye


Bahnhof Train Station



Elder Glenn Johnson
Kirche Jesu Christi
Heckengang 55
21079 Hamburg
Germany


Von meinem iPad gesendet


Monday, November 20, 2017

Fazed

Welcome back, earthlings. I am honored to have yet another chance to report of my doings here in Hamburg to you all again.


a Beauty from last week

We had a heck ton of appointments fall out this week, which is super lame and not fun, but whatever—you’ll have that. We did get to meet with Jason again this week, and we had a solid lesson on baptism again and answered a couple questions and helped him with a couple of concerns he’s got. To our other baptismal candidates, one was sick this week and the other had completely no time...but we are for sure meeting with all three of them this week--for sure.

One of the days this week, we were in a bus on our way to do some finding because a lesson had just fallen through, and I noticed a mid-twenty year old guy just flat out staring at my nametag like I had a bullet hole in my chest or something. But that’s nothing new, so I ignored it, and once this guy is walking out of the bus, he yells back „DIE BIBEL IST EIN MÄRCHENBUCH!!“ Or for you lesser English speakers „THE BIBLE IS A FAIRYTALE BOOK“ and for those of you who can only speak Persian „کتاب مقدس یک کتاب افسانه است.“ Funny, because 1) he’s pretty wrong on that statement, and 2) he waited until he was out of the bus, because he couldn’t say it to my face. He must’ve been scared I’d just punch him right in the soul with some bomb truths of why he’s completely wrong. Naja, there’s always a next time.

Other than that, we did lots of finding this week and didn’t have much luck. We talked to a man from Italy who is catholic (which is super classic) but hates his church (even more classic). We told him our church is cool and he said he’d try it out so we got his number and hopefully something will come out of it. We also were on an S Bahn to Hamburg as a couple from Poland spoke to us, asking what church we were from. Once we said the name and asked if they’ve heard of us, they said „nope, and we don’t want to hear anymore,“ and continued to ask us about our church. Probably the longest conversation about the church I’ve had with someone after the conversation started with them telling me they don’t want to hear anymore. Neato.

Even though this week wasn’t as successful as some of our others, along with Thanksgiving coming up soon, I’ve been trying to stay grateful for what we have, and it’s helped a lot. Sometimes there are things that don’t go as well as we planned in our life, and it can really bum us out and keep us down. BUT when we try to always keep the spirit of Thanksgiving with us and actually realize how blessed we are to be living in a 1st world country with running water and heating systems; it’ll keep you humble for sure. Since we’ve got Thanksgiving this week, I want all of you to find someone you’re grateful for who you don’t get a chance to tell often that you’re grateful for them, and just say thanks for all they do. I can tell you now, it’ll brighten not only their day, but yours too.



ok bye



St. Michaelis Kirche


on top of the church


apparently the place where Harry Potter was filmed when he goes through the fire and says „diagon alley.“ Somebody fact check it. 




Elder Glenn Johnson
Kirche Jesu Christi
Heckengang 55
21079 Hamburg
Germany

Monday, November 13, 2017

#DerLichtEinWelt

Good day, acquaintances.

Well, this week was a crazy one. We started off this week with a total of 0 investigators with a baptismal date and ended with a legendary 3 investigators with baptismal dates.

Let us go through them. Jason, he is a son of a member in our ward, who we’ve been meeting with quite often and playing sports with every week. He is trying hard to find an answer for whether or not the church is true, and if he should get baptized. Well this legend decides to take the 2nd of December as a date for him to get baptized, as he searches further and further to see if the church is true.

NEXT on the list, we have our legend Georg. He is an older gentleman, but he has got quite the young sense of humor might I say. He is getting married, and then gonna get baptized about a week later, how legendary. He reads in the scriptures about an hour a day, and isn’t even a member yet! That’s a pretty solid roast to all of you who ain’t got time for that. An overall legend.

Last but certainly not least, we have our friend Richmond from the wonderful country of Africa. He’s very new to Germany, but has family members in our church and realllyyyyy wants to be baptized. He has already fought against his job to get Sundays free, and he was finally at church on Sunday as well! If all goes well, we can probably get our legend baptized on the 1st of December.

Overall, I am super pleased and satisfied with how well the work is going here. We continue to find new people to teach every week, lose a few every now and then, but wow, it’s wonderful. Anyways, enough with the sappy stuff.


Our district. Rip Elder Ausobsky

We had the chance to go out with some „future missionaries“ on splits this week which was fun. It was good to have a solid conversation with someone who can tell me all about the new xbox games coming out and which ones I gotta play and which ones I shouldn’t. No, but he was a legend. We met ourselves with Georg, drank some God-sent peach tea, some less God-sent weird cake things, and he had a great time getting a taste of the mission life. He did wonderful, also gave out his first Book of Mormon out of many to come.


after the mission prep day

On our mini splits, we were standing in a bus back to the church, and I heard a small family speaking English. Now friends, in Hamburg, hearing English isn’t so rare. But bear in mind, even though not many speak it correctly, there are other countries where the people speak English that can be living in Germany. For example: anywhere in the UK, many parts of Africa, Canada, usw (etc.). This family though was speaking the real correct English, I could just feel it. I headed down towards them and was straight up with them. I started off, „Excuse me, I don’t mean to interrupt, but I couldn’t help but notice that you guys sound very American.“ Of course they were, and we got to have a solid American conversation with two people not from Utah. Wonderful.

In any case, the work here is walking beautifully, and it’s amazing to see the power the gospel and the Book of Mormon can have in changing people’s lives and bringing them closer to our Father in Heaven.

Stay lit this week boys.



nice







Elder Glenn Johnson
Kirche Jesu Christi
Heckengang 55
21079 Hamburg
Germany


Monday, November 6, 2017

Super Classic

Happy Monday everybody,

Well, this week was a fun one. We had a zone conference this week and it was quite an entertaining one. We learned a lot about the Reformation and the role it played in the growing of religion in Germany because we had Zone Conference on October 31st—one of the biggest holidays in Germany—HALLOWEEN. Oh yeah, it was also some random 500 year anniversary of some guy posting a bunch of complaints about the Catholics on a door; but who even cares about that right?



Altona Church is a legit Mansion
Hamburg and Neumünster Zones

Afterwards, we were blessed with the opportunity to hitch a ride with our dear President Christian Hans Fingerle back down to Wilhelmsburg where he accompanied us in a lesson with Georg. Also freaking GOOD news: Georg is getting married on December 5th!!!! That means this legend is gonna get baptized as soon as possible after that. Also he wants me to be a witness at his wedding, how dope!

Halloween is quite interesting here in Germany. Unknown to most, the kids here actually are going trick or treating nowadays here. We saw a bunch, but didn’t have any candy to give out so we blacked out our apartment so nobody would ring hahaha. But the young teenagers here celebrate Halloween in a different, more German way. Und zwar they find joy in pelting almost every single bus in the city area with eggs. I didn’t see a single bus that night that was without egg splatters. Classic German youth.

On Friday morning, we were doing some weekly planning and we get a call from a random number, but knew it was a missionary in our mission. Well, I answered it, and it turned out to be a very good friend of mine, a sister missionary in a former district. Well, she talking to a Persian guy on the street at that very moment who couldn’t speak English or German and she was like „Well, can you talk to him for me??“ And so I was like, „Uh, no but I’ll try haha. “ And then he got the phone and it was crazy. I was understanding a ton of what he was saying, was able to get my point across with what I was trying to say. I talked to him about God and Jesus and all that good stuff and he was super excited. I got a chance to introduce the کتاب مورمون (BofM) to him and he ended up taking a Book of Mormon and swapped phone numbers with the sisters! All in Farsi too—like what the heck? (The gift of tongues in action!)

Anyways the time is flying by and I can’t believe I’ve been here in Hamburg for almost 6 weeks already, it feels so fast. Elder Hillyard and I are killing it out here, and are super pumped for our upcoming baptisms in the next couple weeks. Let us pray for miracles, because God wants to give them to us. It’s great to be able to see the hand of the Lord frontline out here!
Have fun this week 🙂




the Altona church is a legit mansion
Most of the Persian group ❤️ 


some cute pday sights 

TV Tower in Hamburg

Elder Glenn Johnson
Kirche Jesu Christi
Heckengang 55
21079 Hamburg
Germany


Monday, October 30, 2017

Out for a year? Nah

On Wednesday, October 25 of the year 2017, my fearless Zone Leader, Elder Jarom Hickenlooper, and I were on splits for the day. Going throughout our planned activities for the day, it comes time for us to make our way over to a sister in their ward, who needed help moving things around in her house.

As we are both fairly new to Hamburg, we were a bit lost on the U Bahns, so we decided to get out at a station called Wartenau. Now we are looking for a way to get there, soon to find out, we can take either a U Bahn (the one we were just in) or a bus. We decided to take a bus instead of more U Bahns, because we’re both used to busses and U Bahns are a little foreign to us.

As we are walking up towards the bus stop, I see a woman walk towards me in the corner of my eye, and speak to me starting off in English, and when I turned around it switched to German. „Elder Johnson?“ she asks, looking at my nametag, „Yes, that’s me,“ I reply. She then asks a question I had never thought I would hear for a long time. „Is your dad‘s name, Chuck?“. To this question I reply (in English, even though we were speaking German) „Yes..?“

She then proceeds to recall her memories of my father serving in her ward, as he served in Hamburg more than 30 years ago. She could still remember him coming over to their house for Christmas all those years ago. She saw us two Elders, and knew she recognized my face from the very first sight. She is one of the only people who my dad is still in contact with from his mission in the Hamburg mission, and the chances of us running into each other like that are very very small. But as we learn from the prophets, es gibt keine Zufälle (there are no coincidences).

My Dad's friend, Petra

I hit my year mark on the mission this week, pretty sick.

That was the big highlight of my week. Other highlights: we had a lit supertausch in Harburg where we played an intense game of BS, had some more lessons with some legends, gave some Books of Mormon out, and feasted upon one of the most heavenly pizzas on the planet.

a stake dance we helped set up a bit
This pizza had Ground beef, pepperonis, bacon, chicken breast, AND bbq sauce. We’re talking one of the most American things you can buy here; ‚twas a blessing to eat.

dürüm lit laden



Elder Hillyard is scary when he’s mad

Happy Halloween

Well. The bock is getting lower and lower so I’m gonna say Tschüss!

Elder Glenn Johnson
Kirche Jesu Christi
Heckengang 55
21079 Hamburg
Germany



Von meinem iPad gesendet