Posted by: merrymission | June 20, 2012

We just had a wonderful Zone Conference. Elder and Sister Jensen of the Seventy were here for their last assignment. He will receive emeritus status in October. Elder Jensen had visited Soldotna Stake years ago and now he and his wife visited here in Iceland. We thought it was wonderful to hear from him again.

President and Sister Andersen are completing their calling as mission president and wife. President Andersen will still be coming to Iceland, but now as the seminary and institute director. We all said our good-byes to them and thanked them for the wonderful job they have done.

Thank you for serving us as our mission president and wife.

Good-bye, President and Sister Andersen and Elder and Sister Jensen

Last week was a very eventful one; Zone Conference on Thursday, seminary graduation on Friday, and Þjóðhátið on Sunday. While other places celebrated Fathers’ Day, we celebrated the Icelandic Independence Day, which is June 17th. Each town has its own celebration. In Selfoss we had a fair-like celebration in the park behind the library. People performed musical numbers until late at night. A biplane flew over doing acrobatics and a monoplane later flew over several times tossing out candy. There were also jumping events for the children. On Þjóðhátið people with national costumes wear them. One of the sisters in our branch, our Young Woman president, has a beautiful one.

If you click on the picture and enlarge, you can see the beautiful designs.

I serve in Young Women and work with two, soon to be three, wonderful young women from one family. Our Sunday schedule is that each of our young women teaches the lesson one Sunday per month. Our YW president teaches one lesson and I teach the another. Each of our young women speaks 4 languages; German is their mother tongue; the family moved to Denmark so they speak Danish; they moved here to Iceland and so speak Icelandic; and in school they learn English. I am so impressed with their ability! One Sunday when I was the only adult in class the young woman teaching the lesson was going to give it in Icelandic, but knowing that German is her mother tongue, I mentioned that she could give it in German. It didn’t matter to me; I didn’t speak either one. Half way through the lesson I realized that she was translating the lesson from the Icelandic manual into German as she taught! They both are thoroughly amazing! I now have downloaded the German manuals onto my iPad so they can teach from the German manual!

Most of the people in Iceland speak several languages. Whenever I express my admiration for their language abilities, they tell me that Iceland is a small country and if they want to communicate with people from other countries, they have to learn another language. English seems to be a common language for people in Scandinavian countries to learn. Elementary school children start studying Icelandic, English, and Danish. At the high school-college level they can add two more languages. Many people practice their  English by watching TV, movies and videos, and by playing video games.

We are grateful to be here in Iceland, serving our branch, enjoying meeting the people, and helping the young elders.



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