Elder Teagan J. Pitcher ... Serving in the Copenhagen Denmark Mission
Elder Pitcher
"I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me." (Phillipians 4:13)

Tuesday, March 31, 2015

March 30, 2015

Hey Ma and Pa!

Here's first and foremost the week:
I am so happy to be here in Sønderborg!  I feel so blessed to have been sent to this branch, and couldn't be happier with my companion. 

Elder Higby and I got around to a lot this week, and probably one of the best things was that we were able to get around to so many of the members, and do a kind of inventory and see how everyone is getting along. 

A great deal of this week has been put towards building the relationships between the members and the missionaries, and I think this is the best I've done as far as getting in contact with the members goes. 

This last week in church was also great because we had a specific focus on missionary work in our branch.  People were sharing personal experiences, and everything focused back to inviting everyone to be with us.  I feel like it was an answer to a prayer because we have a fireside coming up this week that we still aren't 100 percent prepared for, but there has been more and more support from the branch, and I think that it's going to go quite well. 

‘MA’ is still being taught, and things are moving slower than before, but still moving.  We also had a great opportunity to go up to ‘S's baptism, and that was an awesome ordinance to witness.  He seems to really fit in. 

Now getting on to the fun stuff... Yesterday we had our media training.  The district had so much fun.  We all were laughing and having a good time, and with some of the pointers we learned I feel much more confident going into this interview.  I'm excited to see where we are able to take this.  It's been great being able to just get our name out there a little bit more. 

Other than that... I'm glad that things are going so well back at home.  I want you all to know that I love getting to hear how things are going back home, and that I always feel like my prayers for family are being answered.  You'll have to be sure to take lots of pictures, and say hi to all of my grandparents. 

I love them all so much :) 

The weeks keep flying by here, but I'm so happy for the time that I do have, and I'd like to say that I'm making the most of it.

I love you both so much!  Have an awesome week!
Ældste Pitcher

Monday, March 23, 2015

March 23, 2015

Hey Ma and Pa!

I got a new Elder today, and Elder Lawless went to Frederiksberg, so we're only two now.  He's actually Elder Ogden's trainee, from the same time I was training Elder Pike.  His name is Elder Higby, and he's a go getter.  I'm really looking forward to this upcoming transfer.  We are going to have a lot of fun. 

There is a new Sister missionary in our District from Denmark, Sister Mølholt.  She doesn't speak much English, which should make district meeting a new experience, but I'm looking forward to it.  I still love everyone in my district, and I think we are going to have a great time.  

My week!  This week has been another great one in Sønderborg. The most exciting thing I'd have to say is the opportunity we had to hold that interview with the two journalist students this week. They seem really excited about the whole project, and if all goes well, it will be a really good resource for the church to be able to get some publicity in a positive way. 

We actually are going to be holding a media training to prepare us for the interviews, and how to respond to potentially controversial topics and things like that, just so that we are getting the correct information out about the church. 

We also got to see Meet the Mormons at our Zone Conference this week.  Kind of a random thought, but it was awesome to see the kind of media the church is using to get our name out there.  

The week seemed so short because of how busy we were. I felt like we were constantly running from one thing to the other even if it wasn't always for an appointment. I wish we actually would have had a better opportunity to meet with some of our investigators this week, but what we lacked there, we made up for in visits to some of our wonderful member families here.

One specific visit was to a single mother's home with her 3 daughters.  She is from Germany, her name is ‘S’, and her daughters are all lots of fun.  We went over to help chop some wood (very typical Danish service project) and also to set up an electric fence for some of their ponies. They are an awesome family. 

I've made it a personal goal to meet with all of the active members outside of church this upcoming transfer. It's something that I feel like I could be better at making an effort toward, and especially with the need of some extra hands now that we are no longer three, the branch is the best fit to help us out.

I'm very excited to be getting Elder Higby. He brings a lot of energy and motivation to the table, and I feel like this companionship is already making out to be a great fit.  

I'm so happy to see and hear about how everything is going back home.  It seems like all of my family and friends are growing up so fast, and everyone is maturing and it's awesome to see.  I wish I could be a bigger part of it right now, but I couldn't be happier than where I am right now.  Things just keep cruising by.  I love this mission.

Other updates. Here's the portion of the 6 month letter for mom and dad... 

“Dear Parents,
If you will be traveling to Denmark to meet your missionary upon his release from the Mission, the following information is important for you to understand regarding the new church travel policy, as you make your travel arrangements.

Church missionary Travel policy requires parents to pay for their missionary's return travel home when they are going to pick up their missionary.  You will be reimbursed in the amount the church would pay from the missionfield to your missionary's home destination.  If you need to know the amount of this reimbursement, please email *, at Missionary Travel, for this information.  Please do not call Missionary Travel for this information.  

Please include in your email to Kristen Nielsen, a copy of your missionary's return travel itinerary once it is purchased and include the amount paid; a current mailing address and to whom the reimbursement check should be sent.  A copy of your missionary's travel itinerary should also be sent to *.  This will help us in preparing for your missionary's departure from the mission field.”

My release date is September *.

Other important info, I'm working on the little BYU quiz thing.  It's just been really hard because we've been busy and I haven't been good about making time for it.  It's being worked on, I promise.  

I love you both, I hope you all have an awesome week!
Ældste Pitcher

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

March 16, 2015

Hey Ma and Pa,

Time for a few updates about the week.

First off, the ‘T's were in church yesterday! It was great to see them there for the first time since I've been here. I'm really pulling for them.

Things are going really well in Sønderborg right now. It was a really even spread this week and we got around to a lot of different stuff.

Two new investigators. One of which is the Icelandic man ‘S’, whom has a lot of deep Christian roots, and then there's ‘T’, a self-referral college student with a lot of curiosity.

We started working with a less active, ‘J’, this week who got ahold of one of his old church friends somehow, and would like to come back to church. His only concern it seems is committing to make the drive each week because it's about 45 min away, but I can tell that with time and getting member relations in the branch going, he should be coming back to church fairly soon.

There are so many things to see to this week, and are again looking at another packed week. We are really trying to take advantage of being three right now as well.

A new member, ‘S’, in our branch has just moved here from Germany with her three daughters. She's a single mother and isn't accustomed to having missionaries over because of it. She was VERY happy when were able to set up a time this next week to come over and put up some much needed fencing around their new home. They're such a sweet family, and I felt like we were their best friends right off the bat.

She also had us give a blessing to her daughter just after church this week because the little girl had fallen off of her bike this last week and got pretty scuffed up.

I just feel like it's been a very fast, exciting week, but the things that happened were all incredible.

Along with everything else it's been a good week for finding. The time we were able to plan in finding ended up finding us with a good number of potentials as well.

The district is awesome. I feel like I've really been able to connect with them over these last weeks, and have decided that I like being at this level of leadership, because I feel like I can be more personal with people, but still reach out to a group.

This last week in District meeting was an especially spiritual experience. After a visual example of the topic we were discussing, I bore testimony and gave a little bit of time for others to bear their testimonies, and I could tell that the spirit was touching everyone in the room. It's been a very good week.

I really enjoyed one of the quotes you sent Ma.  Christ changes men, and changed men change the world.  Perfect!  :) 

It was good to hear about how everyone there is doing.  My friend Whitney came home from her mission this last week.  I can remember her going into the MTC just before me.  It really put Things into perspective for me today. 
Received the dreaded 6 month letter - AKA Death Letter

I'm sure sending my companion home next week probably won't help that perspective either.  Weird..  I'm loving my time here in Sønderborg.  The mission has SO MANY baptismal dates right now.  The hastening of the work of salvation is accelerating in Denmark, and it's incredible to be here. 

Aunt Val also shared a neat experience she had this week with a certain Danish hymn. If she hasn't told yet, I want you to just ask her about it.  It was very touching. 

I love you both lots and lots, have an awesome week!
Med Kærlig Hilsen
Ældste Pitcher

Monday, March 9, 2015

March 9, 2015

Hey Ma and Pa!

On to this week’s events.

We have so many new friends! Some return appointments just need to be coordinated.

We taught one of our investigator's father this week, who originally actually comes from Iceland. His name is Sigurdur (with the Thorn instead of the d) and he's very bible competent. He is willing to hold commitments and takes what we say seriously. Things are looking up for him.

We also were able to meet with ‘E’ and her sister this week. They have just moved into a new apartment, and she had lost her Book of Mormon, but we have a return appointment this week, and she's making progress.

Zone training this week was great. Everyone from my district came up to me after pumped up for the coming month.

This week we also met with a less active family in our area, the ‘T’ family. ‘P’, the mother, asked for a blessing due to some recent family struggles. We talked about the importance of the sacrament and coming to church, and I think she just kind of feels hopeless about it.

The family can get kind of rowdy, and hard to calm down, but I've already started to see a difference just in the few times I've been there, and ‘P’ called us to have us come do a service project for them this week, so I think they are starting to put a bit more trust in the missionaries.

Our good friend ‘M’ finally came to church for the first time in a long time. It was good to see him there with his family after having been away for so long. I think the sting of being offended a while back might be going away. We're still meeting with him, and things are looking up.

Some other awesome news about church: ‘R’ got up to bear her testimony and has decided to serve a mission! She thanked the missionaries and her friends for being a positive influence on her, and said that after some encouragement, she feels like this is what she needs to do. The branch is so supportive of her, and I can tell she's pretty happy with her decision.

We're still teaching ‘R's mom, and we realized this week she has some interesting views about how things work, but from what ‘R’ said, they still talk about the church often, and find time still to read together when time allows. ‘R’ told us she'd like to teach us how to make some good authentic Mexican dishes (a topic we got on before) so we're looking at a delicious return appointment here in the coming week :)

Things are going really well here. They aren't slowing down for anything either. Basically our entire next week is already planned!

I love you both a Whole bunch!  Have a great week!

Ældste Pitcher

Monday, March 2, 2015

March 2, 2015

Hey Ma!!

I am still need to get around to pictures, and the weekly update this week took a pretty long time.  Things have been really busy lately, but that's good right?  :)  Here's the weekly update:

The Elders and I had a really great week for teaching. We taught two new potentials this week, and have been finding a lot more people at home recently which is awesome.

We set as a district goal this week to find two new investigators, and use that to pump up the members in our areas to get some great member missionary work going, and for us at least it's really helped.

We talked with the recent convert ‘A’, and talked with him about a few new friends we had made, and what he thought we, or they (he and ‘MA’) could be doing better to help ‘MA’ come to a sure answer on baptism. He talked about improving on their family reading, especially because it's so hard when they are hardly ever home at the same time, but without making more excuses, promised they'd be better at it. They are on their way I think.

We also had two great appointments with our member friend ‘R’ in the area. She has been a great missionary over the last week! She told us to stop by her mom to set up a time where we could all meet, and got to know her a bit better. Her mother (whose name is also ‘R’) has previously investigated the church, but had been a little apprehensive to learn more after ‘R’ got baptized.

The next day we had an awesome lesson with the both of them, and they agreed to our commitment to read together from the scriptures each day over the next week. ‘R’ has a very strong faith in God, and Christ, and I think that coupled with her daughter's strong testimony will provide an excellent environment for the spirit to come in.

‘R’ also set up a teaching appointment with her brother's girlfriend who recently had questions about the church. ‘E’ is her name, and we were able to cover a lot of ground, and invited her to church and to read from the Book of Mormon. ‘R’ was able to bear testimony of everything that we talked about, and the spirit was really strong.

Like I said, it's been a great week for teaching.

Along with that, I can't forget to add that we got into the local newspaper!!! It's actually been a very good opportunity for us to let people know WHO we are. We had several of our investigators text us excited to see us on the front page, and despite a few misquotes, the article itself was actually done quite well. We have even had a few times contacting on the street this last week where people have recognized us from the paper, allowing us to talk with them for a few minutes about the church.  What was kind of lame though (also kind of funny in an ironic sense) was that they put our article just above a lingerie ad. Ha!  Oh Denmark! 

This Saturday we went on exchanges with the Esbjerg Elders in Esbjerg. They seem to be doing pretty well despite being sick off and on for the last two weeks.

Elder Gudnason and I were able to teach a less active named ‘C’ who is actually a good friend of mine, only knowing him previously from Christmas time when he came to visit his parents Annalise and Steffen in Helsingør.

He's struggling still with a few things, but the Elders have a good plan with him to help him overcome smoking before his girlfriend is baptized this week.

The other Elders also had a really good split for finding which was really good for the area.  It was also a really good chance for me to get to connect with my district because we had an organized soccer activity and the sisters were along, and then in the evening, the man that was supposed to have us over had a really bad asthma attack, couldn't host anyone that evening, making it so that we had to just go pick up the food he'd prepared, and have a nice district dinner in the church. 

The rooms weren't big enough, so we had a luxurious hallway dinner, and we even had the newest sister share a message to make it feel like a real dinner appointment :) 

The Sisters in my district also both asked for a blessing, and I had the honor of being the mouth piece for both Sister Rovig and Sister Mandla’s blessings.  That was a neat experience.  I have the best district no doubt. 

This is going long, but last, I also got to catch up with Elder Pike on Sunday because it was stake conference on Jylland.  I didn't get a pic because my camera died, but I'll be seeing him again on Wednesday for Zone training.  It was awesome to hear him speak with people around him like Danish was no big thing.  He's continued to progress, and it made me really proud :)

An awesome week here in Sønderborg.  Much Love!!
Ældste Pitcher