Sunday, September 28, 2014


So... the day came and now I am home. Its 4 am in Utah and I am exhausted, but I can’t stop thinking about what I would be doing at 12 pm in Sweden right now. I am happy to be home of course but it already feels as though it was all a dream which kind of scares me.

My last week as a missionary is one that I will never forget. We had a good last couple of days- tracting, contacting, packing, laughing, crying... sitting on my last bus and train rides, looking out of the windows at the beautiful city that I love... saying goodbyes, attending the Stockholm Temple, bearing testimonies, having my last interview with President Beckstrand, and waking up at 4:30 am to get to the airport. I felt content but also unsure and a bit nervous... 

The morning at the airport was stressful because our flight got changed last minute- But everything worked out and on our first 9 hour flight from Sweden to Chicago, I think we were all a little “slap happy” and I didn’t really have any emotions/couldn’t comprehend what was happening. We landed in America and one of the Sister Missionaries without thinking said “hej hej” to a flight attendant who answered back “hello” in the most American accent I have heard for a while and we all looked at each other in shock and a bit teary eyed realizing that we were not in Sweden any more... The airport was so loud and everyone seemed so rushed and that is when the emotions hit me... that this is all really over- that there were no more lessons to be taught in Swedish and that my missionary tag would soon be coming off. 

We boarded the plane to fly from Chicago to Arizona and I sat next to a man to the left of me and my MTC companion, Syster Hauglid on the right- It was fun to be with her on the flight home. I noticed the man sitting next to me, put a thing of mints called “Läkrol” on his table, which is a Swedish brand. I immediately knew that he was from Sweden so I began talking to him- he just so happened to be a professor from the Uppsala University and was attending a conference in Arizona. I knew at that moment that it was no coincidence that our flight plans had changed that day. I told him that I just lived in Uppsala and was given the most amazing opportunity to teach one last lesson in Swedish to a Swede. He took a Book of Mormon and we ended up talking about it for the next 3 hours. I opened up my scriptures to read for the next thirty minutes we had left and read this scripture in 3 Nephi 5:13- “I AM A DISCIPLE OF JESUS CHRIST, the son of God. I have been called of him to declare this word among his people, that they might have everlasting life.” 

It was a peaceful confirmation that my mission is not over. I will always be a disciple of Jesus Christ. I am so grateful for a thoughtful and loving Heavenly Father who knew that I needed this experience. To be able to teach one more lesson as a missionary to a Swede who lives in the same city that I lived in. 

I am filled with so much gratitude. 

I love missionary work.

I love the gospel.

I loved my mission and I know that it will forever be a part of me and that I will continue to think of my experiences and feel the blessings from it everyday for the rest of my life. 

I am so grateful that I was welcomed home by my wonderful friends and family. 

It feels good to be here. It is going to be hard- I can already feel that but I know that it will be awesome. 

My cute mom and dad went to some serious work on my new room and I love it. I think that is what actually woke me up this morning- I just started bawling because I am so grateful for them and all that they have done for me over the past 18 months. And I don’t think that they are wanting me to be moving out any time soon :). It feels at home in this new house that I have never been to. It was so fun to sit with my little Lillie and sissy Hannah and just hold them. I love them so much. And it was so fun to sit in my room and talk face to face with my parents for hours. They are incredible people. 

Life is wonderful and filled with so many happy endings and beginnings- I know that this is where I am supposed to be. 

- l i d e. 

Monday, September 22, 2014

looks like i'm being transferred home

Our amazing investigator Gabriella
Wow. What a wonderful week to end on. We have been so busy- trying to get everything done and ready for transfers. We had a group of about 12 students come to church yesterday which was soooo cool! I gave my last testimony and said a lot of goodbyes- which are always hard. I have met the best and sweetest people who have influenced and blessed my life and I am going to miss them. 
I tried my hardest everyday this week to just ENJOY every single moment- the good and the bad. I have had so many thoughts and emotions running though me as I tried giving my last week my all and also as I have been preparing to come home. I have been overcome with the spirit again and again this week that I have done all that I needed to do... and I am so grateful for that. I was not a perfect missionary- in fact I know that I did a lot of things wrong but I was learning along the way and I was trying my best... and I do not have one regret. 
It is interesting that even though there are not very many things that are "comfortable" on the mission, I feel comfortable and look forward everyday to being here. Everyday I have to stretch outside of my comfort zone... it has never gotten easier for me- and yet I know that I am going to miss it with all of my heart.


Thank you for allowing me to be here.

Thank you for your letters- I couldn't have made it through some days without your inspired words and love and prayers. I will miss this time that we get each Monday to write home and to read letters from home. It has been spiritually uplifting and very fun for me.

There were beautiful moments this week that caused me to pause, smile, and offer a prayer of gratitude for the opportunity that I have had to be a missionary in Sweden... Here are a few of those things... Having an hour every morning to study the scriptures. Singing Swedish hymns with my companion. Taking buses and trains. Going up to strangers on the street to invite them to learn about the gospel. 
Taking a plane to the top of Sweden and looking out the window at the beautiful world that God has created- and having a confirmation that God is real and that he loves us. 
Luleå- splits with sis eborn
Going on splits with the AMAZING sisters on this mission. Teaching the Restoration. Bearing testimony countless times during the day. Laughing with Sister Anderson about everything. 
Gabriella at church
Eating food that I would NEVER eat at home. Looking for ways to serve others all day everyday. Speaking Swedish. Running in the fog before the rest of the world has woken up. Being surrounded by inspiring members of the church. Listening to people tell us about their adventures and their struggles. and last but not least, admiring the forests, lakes and huge skies. SWEDEN IS BEAUTIFUL and my mission has been INCREDIBLE. I have been so so blessed. 

We were invited over for dinner or lunch almost twice a day everyday this week. Everyone has been so sweet to me and I am so happy that I got to know this ward so well in the past 10 weeks. I love them and can't wait to visit next summer. 
dinner at my favorite family!!
I read an awesome talk this week while preparing to come home. It is called "Get On with Our Lives." :) In the talk, Elder Steven E. Snow says,  
"Most of us do not seek or even welcome dramatic changes. But change is an essential part of life's experiences. Many of these changes come as we naturally make our way though our earthly journey. Our lives change as we progress from childhood through youth and on into adulthood and finally old age. Schooling, missions, marriage, employment, and retirement are all examples of milestones of change." 
We were at the Swedish Church with a less active and these people asked me if they could film me with the King's crown on top of my head hahahaha. It was hilarious.
Although I know that coming home is not going to be easy- I am so excited to get on with my life. I am excited to hold you all in my arms and to continue to learn about the gospel and do the things that I have learned how to do on my mission. I look forward to learning and working and fulfilling the rest of my goals and plans and dreams. 
baby milla

Elder Snow also says that our answers to how we should deal with any type of change is by listening to the prophets, keeping an eternal perspective, having faith, and being of good cheer. I have a testimony that we can accomplish any change in our lives if we do those things. Those are the things that helped me adapt to being a missionary and they are the things that will help me when I'm home. 
my favorite girlies

painting our favorite family's fence
I love you all. I WISH LILLIE THE HAPPIEST BIRTHDAY OF ALL!! I canNOT believe she is 17. She was 15 when I left!! So crazy. I look forward to squeezing her guts out in a few short days. :)
We are going to the temple with everyone who is going home on Wednesday, sleeping at the mission home and then heading out on Thursday morning. C U SOON.

Puss puss och MÅNGA KRAMAR-

love, Sister Christensen ~for the last time.

hahaha mohammad's texts

Mohammad made dinner for us on the beach!

Elder Bednar spoke to our mission!

Monday, September 15, 2014

embrace who you are!

sunflower field
Käre familj och vänner! 


This week, I received the nicest letter and package from cute Shauna Benee, and letters from Steve Christensen, Papa and mom!! THANK YOU!! I can't believe I am still getting spoiled! I am so so so grateful. THANK YOU FOR THE CUTEST RING MOM! I love it. And Happy Birthday to TRUMAN!! I love you little buddy!
sister bass and allred
This week was so busy and so fun. We had splits with the Täby Sisters- Sister Bass who is training Sister Allred who just arrived last week. It was fun to be with someone who is just starting their journey here. She is a hard worker and is working really hard on Swedish. It is always fun to be around greenies because they have such a strong desire to work and they are so humble and just want to learn. Sister Allred was telling me about weird things that people are saying at home now- like phrases from songs or something and I was so confused. hahaha I am going to be so out of the loop. She said that people make a clicking noise with their mouth and then say "or na"??? I don't get it. hahaha. Do you know what I am talking about?
bednar conference
We had an awesome Mission Leadership Conference this week as well. It was my last one- which is weird. President Beckstrand asked for those going home to please stand up. It was me, Sister Richins, Taylor, Morris, and Klingler. It was a tender moment for all of us. They are going to be losing 17 Sisters when my group goes home next week! I am guessing that a lot of Sister areas will be closing down. Our conference was on the importance of faith. We focused on these scriptures: Mark 11:22-23 
"And Jesus answering saith unto them, HAVE FAITH IN GOD. For verily I say unto you, that whosoever shall say unto this mountain, be thou removed, and be thou cast into the sea; and shall not doubt in his heart, but shall believe that those things which he saith shall come to pass; he shall have whatsoever he saith." 
our generation pic (I trained hosie and hosie is training Sandberg) :)
We talked about mountains being symbolic of traditions and beliefs. We went through and listed what the different mountains are in the Stockholm Sweden Mission- And I wrote down that the biggest mountain for me is actually feeling like I do have faith and that I have tried to be positive but still haven't seen a lot of success... So the mountain has been that I have needed to CONTINUE to have faith and CONTINUE to be positive even when (or maybe especially when) times are the hardest. But I have also found on my mission that we determine or own success. And I am grateful for that- because I truly feel like I have been given more success than I deserve. 
Sister Beckstrand gave an awesome presentation about our individual gifts and strengths. She asked us to write them down and then she talked about the reason we are given specific strengths- and that is so we can give to the Lords storehouse (D&C 82:18-19). So that we can help those around us. We watched an awesome video of a farmer who has no arms or legs and he said that his parents raised him like they would have raised a child who HAD arms and legs. They taught him that he had the potential to do anything- he had no limitations. He said that it is not EASY to be a farmer- in fact he has to put in 400% instead of 100%... but he can do it. I love that. 

We were ALSO treated to an amazing conference with Elder Bednar. I learned so much from him and felt the spirit so strongly as I sat on the first row right in front of him-- I could just feel and see that he is just a normal person with strengths and weaknesses but that he is an apostle of the Lord. I think what I got the most out of his presentation is how the spirit speaks to me personally. He didn't stand up and give a talk- he asked us to stand up and ask him questions that we have, and as we did that, I felt the spirit answering my individual questions that I had in my heart as I listened to his words and the words of the missionaries around me. One impression that came to me was that I love the Holy Ghost. And that I want it to always be with me so that others can learn- not from me but from the spirit THROUGH me. And the spirit comes through personal testimony and through our worthiness.
our investigator moses
We taught the girl (TWICE) that I wrote about last week, Gabriella... and she is AMAZING. I will tell you about her more in a week! We are so so blessed. Mohamad is the biggest sweetheart and he just wants to share the gospel with all of his family and friends. He had his sister invite us over to her house for dinner this week so that we could teach her family and he bore the sweetest testimony. And then he turned to me and said "I used to love to drink alcohol and do all things bad but the Holy Ghost help me so much and I don't want do those things anymore and I am so happy." :) 
our sunday school class :)
I loved this quote that Shauna sent to me: "Authenticity is a daily practice. Choosing authenticity means: cultivating the COURAGE to be emotionally honest, to set boundaries, and to allow ourselves to be vulnerable; exercising the COMPASSION that comes from knowing that we are all made of strength and struggle and connected to each other through a loving and resilient human spirit; nurturing the CONNECTION and sense of belonging that can only happen when we let go of what we are supposed to be and embrace WHO WE ARE. 

Authenticity demands WHOLEHEARTED living and loving- even when it's hard, even when we're wrestling with the shame and fear of not being good enough, and especially when the joy is so intense that we're afraid to let ourselves feel it. Mindfully practicing authenticity during our most soul-searching struggles is how we invite GRACE, JOY, and GRATITUDE into our lives."- Brené Brown. 
doris and olle took us to lunch this week and watched us get on the bus hahaha they are like our parents. :)
I especially love how it says that we feel that sense of belonging when we let go of what we are supposed to be and embrace who we are. This is what the Gospel of Jesus Christ teaches us. This is what our Heavenly Father and Savior are trying to teach us over and over again everyday. I have really come to love myself on my mission for who I truly am as I allowed the gospel to come into my life and as I pushed away all that the world wants me to be. Yesterday in our Sunday school lesson, we wrote a list of values that we have in the church and we talked about how Satan and the world is asking the exact opposite of those values. It is hard, but as we live the values of the gospel, we will learn that we are meant to have different strengths to add to the Lords storehouse, we are meant to be unique and authentic. We are meant to feel like we belong when we are doing things that are right- not when we are doing the things of the world. 

SO... Embrace who you are. Invite grace, joy and gratitude into your lives as you practice being authentic. Because as we embrace who we really are, we will embrace being members of this amazing church- because the gospel and its values are what shape us into being who we are. WE ARE UNIQUE and WE ARE AWESOME!
we walk through forests to get to our lessons :)
I will be writing home for the last time next week. I am excited to work hard for one more week! We are doing our last sister exchanges in Luleå tomorrow and Wednesday and we have a full week planned with members and investigators so I can say my goodbyes. It will be awesome! 

I LOVE YOU ALL-- have a happy and good week. Thank you for the letters and love and prayers and kindness and goodness. Tell cute Truman Happy Birthday for me! I love that boy!!


OH YA: And a member from Gubbängen called me this week and said that he ran into a less active and they started talking and she is also related to Peter Forsgren! He knew I was serving here and called me and gave me her number to call her- he said that she was excited to talk to me. So that was pretty cool! 

AND I found Ulla Birgitta- the lady that dad taught for 6 months and she got baptized but has been less active for some years now. I found her address and called the Elders in Hägersten and they went by her and she said that she loves dad and our family and was excited to meet with them! I told them to tell her that we would love to meet up with her next summer when we come :)

ANNND I am happy that Henry is out in the field! Even if it is in Idaho! I am totally road tripping it up there to see him hahahaha just kidding but really.

Monday, September 8, 2014

indian summer.

There is a time of year that the Swedes call "Indian summer"- (maybe it’s called that all over the world but I've never heard it before- haha). It occurs after a few cold weeks of fall when the sun comes back out and is really warm during the day time. To me it is kind of like a mix between summer and fall. The seasons, like Papa has said, match the seasons of our lives. I know I have mentioned this before but Papa said that winter, spring, summer and fall are like our trials, opportunities, blessings, and lessons learned. This has been a good time to harvest the lessons I have learned over the past 18 months and with this Indian summer I feel like it was a good week to notice all of the blessings in my life as well.
ahahhaha this is a funny picture
We got a call this week from the Sisters in Norrköping saying that one of their investigators has just moved to Uppsala and would love for us to call her. The Sister that was talking to me on the phone said "And Sister Christensen... I think you were the one that contacted her!" Her name is Awet and Sister LaFontaine and I contacted her in April when we were in Norrköping for General Conference. We randomly decided in between sessions to go outside and get a few contacts in, so we did, and we met Awet! We got her number and gave it to the Norrköping Sisters and they have been teaching her and she has been coming to church for the past five months! And she just happened to move to Uppsala where I am serving! I was on splits with Sister Ludvig (she is serving in Gävle) when I got the call so we decided to call her that night and we ended up meeting with her and then she came to church on Sunday! She is from Eretria and there is a bit of a language barrier but she is such a sweetheart.
the guy that owns this went to the bathroom and asked for us to watch over his stuff hahaha
Another blessing was that we got a text from a girl named Gabriella who said that she used to meet with the Sister Missionaries and is now ready and interested in meeting again and learning more. So we are meeting with her tomorrow!
And among so many other blessings, MOHAMMED WAS BAPTIZED!!! He was baptized on Saturday and it was a beautiful baptism. He was so excited and his Sisters came to watch and support him and it was so quiet and peaceful. The Spirit was so strong. And afterwards he gave a "speech" that he had prepared. It was so awesome. At the end of the speech he said "I just want to be a good Mormon." :). It has been so cool to watch him progress and go from being muslim to gaining an understanding of our Savior and wanting to be more like Him. He is so happy to be a member and wants to help translate for persian speakers and teach lessons in church. He is filled with so much light! I haven't experienced seeing many baptisms or reactivation's on my mission, but when I do, there is a peaceful confirmation in my heart that it is never me or any of the missionaries who did anything. Our job is just to invite and to teach with the Spirit. And I am so grateful that the Lord does the rest.

Mohammed received the Gift of the Holy Ghost yesterday in church and it was so cool to watch him take the sacrament and renew his covenants that he made yesterday. He is already planning on getting the Priesthood next Sunday and he is so excited. It made think of how much I love the Priesthood and need it in my life. I am so grateful that I grew up in a home where my dad was worthy of the Priesthood and was always willing to give myself and others blessings when they were needed. I remember, almost exactly a year and a half ago, when dad gave me a Father’s Blessing before I entered into the MTC. The spirit was strong, we were both crying, and at that moment, I felt his love so strongly for me. And as I sat in a chair in our kitchen, listening to the words of my earthly father, I felt so strongly the love of my Heavenly Father... That He knew who I was and what I was about to do and that He was going to help me and comfort me along the way.

The Priesthood is so powerful.


During that Sacrament Meeting as I thought of the Priesthood, I looked around at all of the amazing men in our little Uppsala ward who have been such great examples to me over the past 8 weeks. The first one is Pontus. He is 25 and got baptized three years ago. He was Atheist and was a total skater with long hair and baggy clothes. One day at a school event, he was listening to a gospel choir group from Africa and that is where he met Kele. She was singing in the group and he talked to her afterwards and she told him that she was a Mormon. He started meeting with the missionaries and got baptized a year later and just got married to Kele in the temple two months ago. He is so strong and I love his story and really look up to him. Other men in our ward that I love are Jon Wellin-berg- (He is in his 70's and is the happiest man. He never stops smiling and he is so humble), Torsten- he is also in his 70's and is so humble and grateful. If you ever compliment him on something he says that he is just so grateful that God has provided him with so many blessings (like his tie or his shirt) :) haha. Kurt- is a huge guy who looks kind of scary but he is the nicest sweetest guy. He loves the gospel and does so much for the ward. These men are so Christ-like and I am so grateful for them.

I love going to sacrament meeting! I always learn so much and feel the spirit so strongly.

beautiful uppsala

we took a raft down the river!
Our Bishop always encourages us before Testimony meeting to just bear a simple short testimony. The difference of the spirit was so amazing when the members did this. It gave almost every member a chance to get up and just bare a short testimony of something they know is true and that they are grateful for. Almost every part of the gospel was testified of. If we do this on Fast Sundays, we will allow more people to have a chance to bare their testimonies. To simply state what they know is true. And I have a testimony that if there is anyone who is doubting something in the gospel, that it will be testified of by someone else during testimony meeting.

This week I am grateful for Indian summers- for the sunshine that has come back out for a couple of days. :)

I am grateful for Baptism, the Priesthood, and for the companionship of the Holy Ghost. I am grateful for my companion and for Isam who translated for us in Arabic about 5 different times this week- haha.


I am so sorry for Henry. I know he must feel so sad to not get going in Taiwan- but it happens to a lot of missionaries and he will be okay. The Elders who are going home with me, didn't get their Visas at the beginning of their missions and had to serve in West Virginia for a couple of months. I am kind of praying that this is a tender mercy on my part- because if he stays at the MTC for two more weeks until I get home, I might be able to see him at the temple for a quick hug!! But I know that is a selfish desire and I will continue to pray for his Visa to come :)

Love you family and friends!!! Have a happy week.

bye bye- adelide <3