Monday, March 25, 2013

Kralj Kranja je preselil

Pozdrav Family and Friends!!
So, to start, A LOT has changed in the last week. A LOT.
Kralj Kranja je preselil.
Kralj Kranja - Currently in the mission, I am basically the ˝King of Kranj˝ because I have been there the most of any other mission in the entire mission. I love Kranj and the people there so much and have gotten to know them really well.
preselil je - However, ˝he moved˝. I am no longer in Kranj.
This week is the beginning of another transfer, which we have ever 9 weeks. With the end of every cycle (with a few exceptions like what happened with me and Elder Bateman) we have the chance of moving to a new area and getting a new companion, staying but getting a new companion, or nothing changing what so ever. I have now experienced both.
This last Thursday night, knowing transfers were soon, but not expecting them until Friday, we got a call from the Zone leaders in Ljubljana, telling Elder Wilson that he will be staying in Kranj, while I will be moving tooooo...... Celje!!!!
And so , from the point of right now of writing this letter, I am sitting in the Celje library, looking out the window at snow falling in Celje instead of Kranj. Celje is slightly bigger than Kranj, with about 50,000 people instead of 40,000 people. It is another city set at the intersection of two rivers just about in the middle of Slovenia, between Ljubljana and Maribor, and is a bit more industrial and built up. It has its own branch (church) here though! (No more 30 minute car rides to church every Sunday!) And the area has been having a good amount of success in the last few months.
Also, another interesting thing with the transfer, is that President Rowe took the Sister companionship out of Celje (before there was one Elder's companionship and one Sister's companionship.) And so, we again have the whole city to ourselves. But this also means we inherit all, ALL of the people the sisters were meeting with also, in addition to all the people the Elders had here before as well. It is going to be a nice and busy transfer!
And so my new companion is Elder Simon. He actually came into Slovenia along with Elder Wilson, my last companion and the Elder I trained in Kranj, so he's only been in country for 2 months. He's also, originally from Utah, Bounitful Area, and also, didn't have the opportunity to go to college before coming out, but is planning on going into exercise science. He's a great guy and we should hopefully do miraculous things together here as well.
This weekend, Sunday specifically, we District Conference (like Stake Conference) in Slovenia. What that means is that all the members in all of Slovenia came to the Ljubljana church on Sunday and we had a great, amazing meeting. President and Sister Rowe spoke, as well as a general authority from Germany came down. It was an amazing conference and was fantastic to see all the people from Slovenia together in one place.
One of the talks given (little sermons you could say) was about how Jesus Christ is like a doctor for our lives. Last Sunday was the day he would have entered triumphantly into Jerusalem for the final week of his life, to glories and praises, of the great Savior he was. But throughout the course of the week, he had to go and experience the pains of all the people of the world, to fully know and be able to prescribe and give the medicine we need in our lives to be emotionally and spiritually healed. He is like the doctor who is helping a person overcome chemotherapy, but instead of the painful procedure being administered to the patient, Jesus experienced the pain, so that we as the patient can be healed without going through the torture of the medicine. That is the miracle of what we call the Atonement of Jesus Christ. This, and the reality that he rose from the dead, proving his work, and that we can rise too if we are humble and come to him is the true significance of Easter.
I hope everyone has a strong and restful Easter holiday.
The Best, from Celje-
-Starešina Benson

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Help One Another

Hello all family and friends!!!

I won't comment on the weather. It's snowing again right now. But spring is here. Flowers and coming up. But it's snowing. Again.

But everything is well otherwise!! This is the last week of the transfer. A week from today three Slovene missionaries will go home and two new ones will come in. What President is going to do to fill the hole of not having 2 sisters come in instead of one? We will see. Also, today. Today!! Is my six month mark being in Slovenia. It's been a fantastic experience and have had the blessing of meeting so many wonderful people and seeing the opportunity of people changing through the power and Atonement of Jesus Christ to become significantly happier and better people.

I have especially seen this in one of the people we have been meeting with recently. The first time he came to church, he felt something unique, that Spirit of God, which began him on the course to change and happiness. Even the other day when we met with him, he was able to tell story after story after story of how he has become a different person recently, in some cases week to week and day to day. He is better able to be a real, sincere friend to others instead of one who is more concerned about self. But most significantly, his relationship with God is one of the most amazing things which he has grown. From being in a world of acting out of tradition and nothing else to coming to an understanding of who God is, and how to build a real relationship with Him and His Son Jesus Christ, His life has changed. As he has learned to ask and search for help from on high, he has been able to receive, which is more valuable than anything else.

I know this work is real and that God works through many people. Awhile back I compared God to the master Architect, not the architect of buildings, but the architect of people. He knows exactly how each and every person on earth fits into each other's lives in a composition of more incredible complexity than we can even hope to imagine and understand. But as we come to a better understanding of our personal place in God's scheme, the better understanding we have of His overall scheme for everyone. This knowledge and surety is something which cannot be replaced, and has no comparison, and is something I have had the opportunity to experience everyday on my mission so far. I'm grateful that I still have so much time ahead of me to be a help in the lives of others full time.

I hope everyone is well at home. I hear the weather is frightfull..lly warm. 
Enjoy and much love!
-Starešina Benson

Monday, March 11, 2013

Spring is Springing

Hello all family and friends!!

As is the norm I feel like now with these letters, I usually start talking about the weather. SPRING IS STARTING!!!!!!! The snow is mostly melted off the fields now. Just the big clumps are still around which really piled up from the snow plows. It's been a mixture of rain, drizzle, sun, and fog for the past week. And the first flowers of the year popped up yesterday! Not that it doesn't mean that it's still cold. Just that I can take the liner out of my heavy coat now and I don't have to wear my scarf everywhere I go now. (Which is a good thing because I think I left it at some one's house. Oops!!)

This week has also been a great week in terms of work also. We found a bunch of new people who are interested in meeting with us, and a younger kid we've been meeting with is beginning to progress towards baptism. It truly is amazing how, when you do your part and go out and work work work, the Lord shows you just how much He has been working before you even arrived to prepare the people you are meeting to first come into contact with you to receive the gospel of Jesus Christ. Elder Wilson and I are not alone in this work, but rather there are whole concords of people, and the greatest of all, God involved in this effort as well.

We are promised as missionaries, and you could even say every person in the world is promised this as well, that the field is white, already to harvest, or in other words, that the place of our labor, the place we work, is already prepared for our success. We just have to ˝thurst in your sickle with all your might˝, or work work work, to gather what has already been prepared, or already grown for our benefit.Whether it is missionary work in your personal area, whether it is success in your school or job or recreation, success has been prepared for you before you even started or arrived. All we simply have to do is be a willing instrument and have faith in this promise, and because it comes from God, it WILL be fulfilled because God's promises must be. But rather if we don't look. If we don't endeavor (se truditi in Slovene), if we don't thrust our sickle with our might and only stare at the beautiful potential, there is no chance of having success. True success only comes through the Lord, marginal success comes from our own hard work with out His help and promises.

I've really learned this lesson really well this week, and I hope everyone, regardless of which labor you perform, recognize that the potential we have is greater than we can imagine, and we are guaranteed it if we labor in faith and humility that we are not alone in what we do.

Hope you have a great week. I heard Spring Break is coming up. Enjoy!!

-Starešina Benson

Monday, March 4, 2013


Hello all family and friends!!

Hope everyone has been well with the weather changes, school beginning
to ramp up, and work moving on.

Here in Slovenia, the winter is finally starting to lose it's grip.
This week I think I've seen just as much sun as I have in the past 3
months. Its a great thing. Also, the sun is up in the morning now when
elder Wilson and I are waking up nice and early at 6:30 in the morning
(1:30 PM Central time?) The nights are still bone chillingly cold
below freezing, but the days are increasingly and increasingly nice. I
hope this only increases to get better as we move forward through the

This week, we've had a great week of helping people progress to the
Savior Jesus Christ and come to know him more and more. The seeds we
have gathered and prevented from being cast into the cold of winter
are beginning to take seed. As the next few weeks progress, it will be
interesting to see what kind of fruits these seeds we have been
nurturing will manifest into.

Also this week, we reestablished contact with a family who had met
with missionaries a long long time ago and were warmly welcomed into
their home at the first meeting at the door step. They are a good
family and eagerly invited us to come back.

Through the dark of winter (and cold), times can seem as if little is
being done. But as time moves forward, with continued nurture and care
through the winter of our efforts, the seeds gathered from the Fall
can begin to sprout into glorious result. Such is the parable of the
seed of faith in Alma 32: 28-43. As we plant the seeds of faith with
the people we meet, and help them nurture that seed, it will grown
within them to a greater knowledge, peace, and direction in life than
they had had before in life.

This week and the next few will be interesting to see how it all
begins to grow, the plants of spring and the people we meet.

Much care-
Starešina Benson