Elder William Perry's Mission Address

Elder William Neldon Perry
Finland Helsinki Mission

Neitsytpolku 3 A 4 FI
00140 Helsinki

Send all mail to the mission home above


Serving from
March 2011 to March 2013

Monday, August 29, 2011

August 29, 2011

Mom I don't know why you worry so much... I had a helmet on haha. It really wasn't that big of a deal. Secondly, I have an appointment with the eye doctor on this wednesday. I don't wear my glasses because I sweat so much on my bike, that they slip off my face. It's easier to wear just one contact. I am completely okay with that. Don't worry, I am using my head. Take it easy over there haha.

Some missionaries just leave clothes, and coats and stuff in the apartment when they leave, so I grabbed mine. Sister Rawlings, and the Doctor in Germany both know about my eye, and everything is under control.

I'm going to zone conference on wednesday so I should get my package then. If you don't send my packages to the apartment, then I either have to pay for shipping inside the country, or wait until zone conference. By the way, I'm almost out of taco shell things haha. I'm grateful for everything you're doing, thank you for your support.

This week has been a really good week. Our district leader Elder Casity commited us to really taking advantage of our 3 hour study block in the morning. I have been so happy all the time as I have done that. We were listening to a BYU devotional talk by a quorum of the seventy, and He suggested that every latter- day saint have a personal devotional every morning. He suggested four things: 1) Get up a little earlier than usual 2: Get ready for the day, exercise, shower, do your hair, get dressed in clean clothes etc 3: Study the scriptures for 7- 8 minutes per day, 4) Find your personal "Sacred Grove." As missionaries, we have a lot longer to study the scriptures and do all these different things, but I want to focus on the sacred grove aspect.

Every night I pray for our investigators individually. I remember in the past thinking at one point... gosh I have to pray for all these people. I caught myself in the thought. I thought about what prayer really is. We are literally communicating with our father. I wonder how he feels when I throw out a bland prayer, and hope for answers. In the bible dictionary it talks about how when we understand our relationship with god, namely that He is our father, and we are his children, then prayer becomes instinctive. It really does become natural. I had forgotton who I was talking to.

I have really seen how important it is to pray out loud. Although He knows our hearts intent, it seems more important to me if I pray outloud. I have tried to visualize myself, like I'm sitting talking with Him. I have noticed that as I have really tried to talk with him, and express my feelings about the work, and what is going on here. I felt I have been guided to the answers which I have needed. I have been so grateful for prayer lately. Missionary work is so much fun, but it can be very hard. There have been some times when we have been rejected so hard that my heart was so angry, and I felt like how am I suppose to love this people if all they do is stare me down, and look at me like i'm a polar bear at the zoo?? Then the hymn, "Did you think to pray?" comes to my mind. I always go and say a silent prayer, and I find peace knowing that I have a loving Father there who is with me.
We definately see miracles though. We contacted this guy once who called us the same day and said He wanted to know more. We met with him, said He felt the spirit and everything... next day nothing...... didn't here from him again. We prayed that we could talk to him again obviously. That particular day, I prayed to know if Heavenly Father really was guiding us. We were riding our bikes and for some reason I took a wrong turn, and ended up going to the church haha when we were heading home. What's funny is I know the streets here so well... but anyways we pull up to the church, and I turn to Vanhin Weaver and said, "I don't know why I came here haha." We turned to go home, and that potential was across the street!!! Of course we went and talked to him....... Not interested....... but I walked away knowing that Heavenly Father is leading us. I can't explain everything, but I know He is there.

I heard a quote from President Spencer W. Kimball who said, "I want to wear out my life, just as I wear out my shoes.. in the service of the Lord." I have realized how much of an priveledge it is to be here. The time is so precious, and so short. I can't believe I am almost at my six month mark. It motivates me to work harder, because I know I will never get this time back.

I'm sorry that I made you mad about the car thing... I'll be more careful. All is being taken care of, If there is a problem that needs to be taken care of then I'll let you know.
Love you both,

Monday, August 22, 2011

August 22, 2011

Yo Ihmisiä Amerikassa!

Hello Äiti, ja Isä

HAha Mother, I am going to the eye doctor in a week. The doctor in Germany gave me a call and said I should just go ahead and go. I have been wearing one contact in one eye, and leaving the other one out. Not sure why that eye is giving me a problem, but I think it is the contacts for my right eye. When I don't wear it in my right eye, I feel fine. Winter coat, I have a winter coat already, haha everything is hyvin suomessa.

Ya andrew came in a few weeks ago! He was sitting next to my District leader on the train up north when I called, and I got to talk to him for a minute. He is in a city called Kaajani, which is north west of me a little ways. He is not in my district but in my zone!! I am so excited to see him at zone conference in a couple weeks!
I am sorry to hear about grandma mckinney, It is very sad, but everything will be okay. There is a plan, and everything is part of it.

I got that package from sisar Luik!! Thank you so much for the taco stuff, and the pen, and the tortillas!!! keep them comming!! oh if you only knew how much I love them!!! I have not recieved the other package yet, but I'm looking forward to it. Hopefully it will come today!

Things have been good this week. President Rawlings came to Joensuu thursday for His fireside. Scrub, scrub, vacuum...door bell rings..." AHHHH!!!VANHIN WEAVER PICK UP YOUR UNDERWEAR!!" Just kidding... we keep a pretty clean apartment, but the mission president has not visited Joensuu for years!! We met with him for a minute, and we went to a teach. After the teach I walked out, and half the ward came! It was sweet, we also found new investigators at the fireside. President Rawlings knows how to talk with people that's for sure. He said that He is very happy with the work we're doing here, and to keep going! I was so happy to meet with him. He is so funny.

So mom you may want to sit down for this one haha... I have to come home... psych... but seriously sit down. So Vanhin Weaver and I were riding our bikes home from an area... and I love going down fast down hills!! I love the jumps, hills, anything reckless haha... anyways, we are riding and I felt a feeling saying I should slow down... I brushed it off, and kept going right through the intersection where... I GOT HIT BY A CAR!!! hahahahah it was so dang funny. I was riding... He was driving, and he slammed on his brakes, and so did I... BBOOMMM!! I got knocked off my bike, and landed on my backpack... convenient haha. Kaikki on Hyvin.. no broken bones, no injuries. My leg was sore for awhile, and I was a little shaken up. When I was on the ground, Vanhin Weaver told me, "Hey You just got hit by a car!!"... "Thanks bro!!" haha So now I slow down through cross- walks... But what is so funny is I was so excited to say that I got hit by a car. While I was getting hit, I was thinking," I'm getting hit by a car!!! haha what the deuce.. weirdo...)

This week I had my first opportunity to be senior companion. Elder Wessman and I went on splits (He was in Andrews mtc group) and everything was so legit!! We went contacting, and stuff, and I understood a lot of the finnish that was spoken. My language is really coming a long. Sometimes things don't come out super pretty, but I understand a lot, and can communicate pretty well. The gift of tongues is so real. I can't deny that. As we are simply willing to put in the effort, and do our part in the Lord's work, the Lord will take care of the rest to make sure we're successful. We talked to this one guy about the Book of Mormon, He said," Look maybe I should have God in my life, but right now I'm just not interested. Maybe someday I will die, and He will say to me, You should have read that Book, and I'll feel bad... or something like that." I started laughing so hard! Elder Wessman didn't get it, but that's okay. It is so much fun talking to people, and trying new things in finnish. I could push myself more to use different grammar principles.

I can't believe I'm in my third change... I love it.. I really am so happy.. and I can't explain it other than, Paljon Hauska tällä Joensuussa! Elder Weaver and I are still getting use to each other, but things are going really good. We are having a lot of fun, and seeing a lot of miracles every day. Sometimes I miss home, and some aspects of my old life there, but I realize that this is where I belong, and everything is all part of the plan. "All things work together for good, to them who are called of God according to his purposes (Romans 8).

I gave my first talk in Sacrament Meeting kaikki Suomeksi!!!! I didn't use one line in English! Except for a coupld words....... Also I only had a few quotes, and three vocab words written down!! I tried to do it all by my heart. I didn't bring my bible with english tabs in it, so when I went to start my talk and grabbed the churches' copy, I realized it was in Finnish!! I said, "Yksi Minuitia, and turned around to have the bishop help me find Romans in the New Testament. It was so sweet. I realized during the talk how much I love Joensuu, especially the members. They are literally my family here in Finland. I will always remember this city, and I hope I can stay here for a long time. Some elders have been able to stay here for like 8 months, I hope that is me. I don't want to leave here!!

Papa, haha Hair cuts here are like 20 Euro's... so unbelievably expensive... so I just have to make due with the clippers, and ask the mom's in our ward if my haircut looks okay!! They are all so nice, and so far I've been good! Sounds like fun with the ATVs, and you got me a poster with autographs from the BYU Football players!!!! LEgiiiit.... I will be waiting for that anxiously by the door!!

I love you all, I want to give you my testimony... That I know the Work is true, the Book is blue, and Yesss.... God is a mormon,
love :n Kanssa... eiku... Rakkaudella,
Vanhin Perry

Monday, August 15, 2011

August 15, 2011

Alright so pretty good week!
Wau Vanhemmat! The change is over, and I am now on my third change! Next month I hit my sixth month mark wowowow!! So I felt bad when I got your letter that said I never answer your questions so I am going to do that first. Mommy: I have no idea where the cord to charge the camera is haha unless it is in natalies room either on the black shelf bin thing, or in the surge protector I always used.

We just got back from this amazing teach!!! We made time for them in our p-day schedule because they are so amazing!! We are teaching a members two kids. Their dad left their family because she refuses to leave the church. We taught about baptism today. We showed them the baptismal font, and talked about how Jesus Christ was baptized even though he was perfect. I told them the story about when I was baptized. I ran into the font, dad baptized me, and I said can I do that again?? But we commited them to baptism, and they both said yes! They all have such amazing faith. The kids understand a lot. Thank thee heavens, and all the inhabitants there for their mom haha. I am so grateful for them.

Elder Weaver... He is pretty cool. I don't know if we are as close as Elder Nielsen and I were haha. He is a lot different, but I am grateful that He is my companion. The Lord has really been helping me with my language this last little while. My capacity to speak has really improved ever since we changed companions. Vanhin Weaver has only been here three changes longer than me. So we both are very new!! But Heavenly Father has really been helping us. He is a very funny guy, He is from Texas. His grandpa bought a huge property down there and He talks about that a lot. He calls it, "The property."

It has been pretty hard, becasue although He is the senior companion, and I totally respect that, I know Joensuu better. So I have to take charge in finding, and getting places, and our investigators. I am grateful that Vanhin Nielsen trained me well because, it would be so hard without that training. Even though we are both very new, I know that Heavenly Father will help us to be strong. Despite of our incapabilities, and our capabilities we are to rely on Christ. It doesn't matter if your not confident in yourself, or your too confident in yourself!! Your confidence should rely in Christ. That is really what I have been trying to focus on this last little while.

Anyways stories!!!
We were on this huge bike ride and on the way home we saw this American Flag post mark thing!! We decided to go tract it! We turn left, and end up going down this bumpy dirt road for awhile! We get to the house, and it is full of American trucks, and cars, and there is this waterfall font thing with the statue of liberty on it!! We go up to the door, and this kid answers speaking Finnish. We ask, "Oletko Amerkiallinen?" are you an american? He answered in Finnish saying, "Olen Suomallinen haha!" The whole family was Finnish but they just really liked america. On the way out we hurried and took a picture in front of lady liberty haha.
So I gave myself a hair cut..............first time without vanhin Nielsen.....
Vanhin Weaver just shaves his whole head, and I was like heck no haha. So I sat down in front of the mirror, took a deep breath............................... bzzzzzzzzzzzzzz..... yeaaaaaaahhhhhhh...... it turned out okay haha. I didn't trust Vanhin Weaver so I asked sisar Turunen today, and she said it looks good. I hope she was being truthful. And I hope that I understood her finnish! She probably said, "Uh.. yeah... Elder Perry maybe I should hit you with my car, maybe that would make it look better....

So now to the spiritual aspect of things...
Vanhin Nielsen and I went to Kuopio to get my new comp, and we ended up going to a teach with the elders there. Apparently the Elder had felt they should go to a particular area, and they did. They knocked a door and found this amazing family who was ready to recieve the gospel. We went back for a lesson with them. This was Elder Jones (District Leader there) last lesson in Finland. He was going home with Elder Nielsen. They have a baptismal date, and are so ready to join the church! tHey were so humble and ready!! At the end of the lesson, Elder Jones gave them His name badge. They cried and the husband grabbed him and embraced him! They were saying through their tears thank you , thank you, and it was so special that I got to see that. It made me motivated to have my elder jones experience. It motivated me to go out and find those families that need this gospel. I can't even describe the spirit that was in the room. I just remember the joy in their eyes.

Elder Hunziker really motivated me to set change goals. My change goals are: Be able to teach all parts of all five lessons in finnish clearly, Read 1/4 the Book of Mormon in Finnish. Learn 3 words/ 2 phrases Daily. Make phone calls in Finnish and be able to set up appointments! (Which I have been doing, and am so excited about!!) I have more but I can't think of them. They are written, and are hung up on my wall by my desk.

I am really sad about grandma mckinney, and I wish I could be there to comfort grandma. I am running out of time, and I think my companion is giving me a dirty look... so. Dad thank you for the pictures, and I hope things go well with your acting career at the Manti pageant. I remeber going down there with jen, and thinking wow..... LAAAMEE haha but the temple is so amazing. I show that picture of maya, to everyone haha. It's a conversation starter.

Anyways I love you both, My package is with my district leader, and I am picking it up tomorrow,

Monday, August 8, 2011

August 8, 2011

Isä ja Äiti

This week has been a crazy week haha. Officially next week, I am no longer a greenie! But I don't think I hit my six- month mark until next month. We picked our mini- missionary up last tuesday, and dropped him off at the train station today, and wow..... crazy!! He was a good boy. Hard worker. It was so funny, because this has been a crazy hard working week. Poor guy. One day we had to go on a huge bike ride to visit a member. When we got home, we had to finish some study sessions. I walked into the room after awhile and found him asleep on the bed!! haha. It made me realize that I am so proud of our work. Elder Nielsen and I work hardd... with two d's. I remember veli Jäkkö said,"I am so tired!" haha I said,"Welcome to the life as a missionary!" It is so funny, because you wake up at 6:30am exhausted, go work out and stuff... go through the whole day exhausted haha......... then finally collapse in bed... dead + exhausted. Then start the whole thing the next day! :) I love it! Never been so happy.

President Ralings called me on Saturday and told me who my new companion is............. d.....r....u.....m....r......o...l.........l.........Vanhin Weaver!! He is so funny. He has been in my zone, and I have met him at zone conferences and stuff. He is such a good guy. But has only been in the mission like three changes more than me...... Language skills... hahahaha this is going to be crazy! Both of us are going to see some amazing gift of tongues action. I prayed that Heavenly Father would give me a testimony of my new companion, and I know that him and I are going to do great things. President Ralings also gave me the assignment to organize a fireside here, at the end of the month because He is coming to Joensuu...... but don't worry i'm not stressed.................................

I was actually really nervous to get my new companion before change call. Elder Nielsen has been an amazing companion who has really taught me how to be a missionary. I am so grateful for Him. He is one of my best friends now, and I'm going to miss him. I don't know if I told you this, but when I came to Finland I prayed that my companion would a good one, who would teach me everything I needed to know. When I had my entrance interview with President Brown, He gave me a blessing, and told me that my companion would become one of my best friends, or good friends or something like that. I want you to know that everything is going good. I am really gonna miss him.

That is so cool that you are finishing up the down stairs, and I know that when we set goals things happen. I'm sorry, but I have to go soon, Vanhin Nielsen has a lot to do before He leaves. We are going up to Kuopio tonight, and He leaves to helsinki on Wednesday, and I come back here with my new comp. Things will be good, and Looking forward to an awesome change!

love you,

Saturday, August 6, 2011

August 1, 2011

Terve! Perheni!
Hyvää Viekoa Suomessa!
We are doing very well here in Finland, having so much fun! We have been laughing at almost everything. We actually just recieved an awesome assignment from President Ralings. We are getting a mini- missionary. His name is Ville Jäkkö! We pick him up from the train station tomorrow. It's going to be legit! Every year in Suomi the youth get to come work with the missionaries for a week. I think He is like 17. So He will be with us all week, so pray that we'll train him good! It is going to be an awesome opportunity for me to learn finnish better. Vanhin Nielsen was in his ward somewhere in Southern Finland. Say's he's crazy! L-E-G-I-T!!

Anyways, I have a lot to share this week haha. First of all, last week I forgot to tell you. We were cutting bushes for a guy in our ward. I was using the saw, and was on this stand so I could reach over the bush. The stand was about 5 feet long, so I started cutting and cutting, inching over, and over, and over... Getting every single stray branch... until... AHHhhhhhhhhhhhh I fell off the stand into a stinging neddel bush hahahaha!! It started killing!! Vanhin Linden (He's a swede) took me to the car and bandaged me up hahah. Now I have these huge red marks on my legs that itch like a mother bear!!!

Kokemus numero kaksi... We were tracting last week and we came across this guy who said I don't have time right now, come back huomena at 2. So we of course came back. Him and his wife were so nice. They put out cookies and juice, and awesome! However... Then He talked to us for two hours about how our church was wrong, and all of these faults. He told us straight up that Christ was going to reject us at the last day because we are preaching false things. Told us all these things, that weren't true from the bible. But for some reason nothing was coming to our minds to defend ourselves. We held our cool. We bore testimony of the things we did know, and left. It was really hard for me. I think it was the first time in my life when my testimony was really challenged. But I went home, and we talked about it for a minute. I said a personal prayer. And I know without a doubt I am where I am because the Lord sent me. I was so impressed with my companions answer to His statements. He said, "I cannot deny what I have felt, and what I know to be true." He said that with power and authority. He also said that was the worst bible bash lesson He has ever been to.
But for some reason it still bothered me. I couldn't explain some of the questions, and statements he brought up. It made for an awesome personal study!

I studied out the arguements, and what our church really believes. Everything can be explained in the scriptures, and through personal revelation. Poligamy, blacks and the priesthood, callings by prophecy, Diety, any question can be answered. And Heavenly Father helped me to feel peace. That man was not ready to recieve the gospel. Anything that we would have shared would have been thrown right back at our face.

It was really funny, because he said something along the lines of why aren't you mad at what I'm saying? The answer is, because we know our message is true. It doesn't matter if people don't agree with it, or try to justify it. The law is the law. "Behold this is the way, and there is none other way nor name given under Heaven whereby men can be saved in the Kingdom of God."

Our investigators are doing very well. We went through a short while where all our baptismal dates fell through. But Heavenly Father has really been helping us with our investigators. One of our investigators asked to see the baptismal font haha. We are really progressing here, not just with our investigators but as individuals. Elder Nielsen and I have really been working on the principal of becoming. Elder Bednar said,"There is a difference between doing missionary things, and becoming a missionary." "Someone can go on a mission without becoming a missionary." I have realized that the thing that distinguishes a good missionary from a christ-like missionary is in goal setting. It doesn't matter what you are doing in this life, if you don't set goals you won't become the best at what you do. Heavenly Father really showed me some goals that would help me to become rather than just doing good things.

So ya... now down to the serious things haha. Everytime we get in the elevator, I have a panic attack and I start telling Elder Nielsen that I HATE ELEVATORS!!! Haha He get's annoyed everytime haha. One time I did it, and we walked out of the elevator and a guy was standing there looking at us like, "What the weird??" Haha I was laughing all the way down the street. I do it everyday at 11 O'clock sharp! We have been having so much fun. Elder Nielsen and I are like best friends. I can't believe the change is almost over! I get my new companion next week. I love elder Nielsen. We are literally like the same person, both stubborn, but just these two little kids always having fun. uhmmm.. Men... Football... uhmm Rugby!!

So mother, thank you so much for the stuff, and I hope that it is the jersey kind, but I trust you. Thank you so much! Elder Nielsen is going home next week, and He is wondering if you can help him with FAFSA. I told him that you could, and you would probably have things ready for him before he gets home. Also I told him about your amazing taco's and enchiladas. He wants to come visit you and say hi. I think he is expecting those meals. If he asks I never used rubber sheets, He thinks I did, but I promised him I didn't... after I was sixteen... I guess that's better than when Rhett slept in His parents bed because he was scarred of the grudge!! Does this go to him?? anyways... if it does, SHout out to RHETT!! Yo bro! Man you ridin the Jet SKiis in CaBo BRa!? Send me his address so I can write him.

Daddy, You flooded your basement?? haha that is ei hyvää!! Mutta, I used to love the samoens by grandma. Everytime we drove up they'd stare us down!! But we would smile and waive, and then we would get the smile of approval haha. I think I am going to send some chocolate to her. How is the M1A holding up without it's owner haha? Did I say that out loud?? How is Toni? Tell her Hi!
So many experiences but such little time....... I miss you family. Pray for you, Rauha!!

Rakaudella, sinun poiasasi,
Vanhin Perry