Monday, May 25, 2015


The Rapsölja fields

It's a shame that I haven't taken a picture of any of the kebab that I have eaten since I got down here. Among missionaries, the kebab from Skåne is legendary, and the kebab of Stockholm is legendary: just in a negative way. So the problem is that when I get that pizza in front of me, I don't have many thoughts other than, "eat it." However, it is my goal to get a of these days. I just think that it is worth mentioning that kebab is an important part of a missionary's life in Sweden. 

Malmö is a city, rich with art and history. :)

This week I had a very unique experience in talking with people. We started our morning like usual, and headed out the door. We had made a goal to talk to everyone that we could that day, so there wasn't even a question when we saw an elderly man walking down the street that we would extend our invitation to him, to come closer to Christ. And best of all, he stopped and listened. It's not every day that the first person we talk to gives us the time to discuss the important message that we are here to deliver. But as we were talking, we had another guy walk up and start asking us questions. At this point we had to split off so we could speak with them both, leaving Elder Bailey teaching about The Book of Mormon in Swedish, and me improving my English with the man who came up to us. As we finished talking with them, I remember thinking, "This is going to be a good day." And it was. Everyone we met on the streets was nice; giving us smiles, taking cards. We hope that we were able to reach out to more than just those two guys on the street that day. But, I was also grateful for the smiles and kindness that I received in my day.


 32 Yea, come unto Christ, and be perfected in him, and deny yourselves of all ungodliness; and if ye shall deny yourselves of all ungodliness, and love God with all your might, mind and strength, then is his grace sufficient for you, that by his grace ye may be perfect in Christ; and if by the grace of God ye are perfect in Christ, ye can in nowise deny the power of God.  

Me and Elder Bailey

One of the coolest things to see, is a person trying to give their friend the same opportunity and joy that they have themselves. It's missionary work at its finest. On Sunday, we met two new people. One is named Williams and the other is Stanley. Williams comes from Jönköping and has the Church, which is something that he values because of the good it has done in his life. He came down to visit his friend, Stanley, and invited him to come to church. This was not the first invitation. I talked to Williams, and this has been a process to be able to get Stanley to this point. I think that Williams' persistence helped show Stanley that church isn't just a Sunday activity to kill a few hours. This is a way to improve all aspects of life. Everything that we do in our church is meant to increase the joy and growth that we can have in this life. We preach what we believe, but living it is what makes all the difference. 

Monday, May 18, 2015


Some random lake we saw as we were biking past.

Well I haven't quite finished my first full week in Malmö, but I feel like I'm starting over again. The language down south is a little different, so I've had to readjust my language comprehension. But it feels good to be here. It's amazing just how different Malmö and Stockholm are. Malmö is the third largest city in Sweden, but I sometimes feel like I am walking through a ghost town. I am surprised at how few people we pass in a day. But there is an exception, sunny days. But then, people are not out on the streets; rather they are planted in the parks or anywhere that they can get their faces in the sun, and they just enjoy it. It's almost a shame to go up and interrupt them catching their rays. But our message helps turn them to the Son that never loses His radiance and warmth, that is, Jesus Christ. We turn to him for help through those dark times in our lives, and He will help us. For that, I am grateful.

I don't know if you can see it, but my bike has a basket. I was apprehensive about it at first, but have since learned to love it for its practicality.

We met with a guy named Bill who was recently baptized into the church and discussed what the Book of Mormon means to him. As I listened to his testimony of the power in the book, it reminded me of the importance and the treasure that I have within it. We must search diligently, and we will find jewels that help us develop and grow. It is not a read that can be done once, or even twice. This is a lifetime growth for all of us, and I was grateful for his reminder of something I do not appreciate enough. 

Swedish kid bombing my photo.

Monday, May 11, 2015


It's a cloud family. 
In the life of a missionary, our lives seem fairly routine. We plan for our days and wake up knowing what we are going to expect. Our schedule is fundamentally the same every day. But we do have several large events that switch things up for us, and two of them fell on this week. The first was getting to Skype home. We get this opportunity twice a year, so, naturally, I was super excited. It was wonderful to see my family's smiling faces, hear the laughter, and have that chance to speak with them. The occasion that is important enough to allow me to call home is Mother's Day, and though the day is over, I cannot say enough to express my appreciation and love for what she has done for me. But the second bit of news has been transfer calls. I was hoping that they wouldn't come to me, because I have loved my time here in Stockholm, but on Saturday, I found out that I would be heading south to Malmö. My companion will be following me to work in the same city, but we will both receive new companions. I'm excited for the changes, but the reality of leaving Stockholm hasn't hit me yet.
You try not to have favorites. And there are great families in the ward, but then there's the Layne family. 

Thursday was a beautiful day. The sun was out, and everything just seemed to go well. We started off our day with a lesson we had planned with a man named Roger. We were planning on meeting him at noon, but he had not answered his phone to confirm with us. We decided to head to his building anyways, but it was locked and we couldn't get in. Luckily there was a bench in front of the building, so we sat down and decided to wait. About ten minutes later, the doors opened, and Roger came out. He had his pack of cigarettes in hand, and I think he had forgotten, or didn't want to remember, that we were going to meet. But he joined us on the bench, and we were able to talk about what he believes in. He mentioned that he had lost his Bible, which he wasn't happy about, but we taught him about The Book of Mormon. When he found out we had it in his mother tongue, he got excited and was very grateful to receive it. We don't believe that The Book of Mormon can, or ever will replace the Bible. But, with the Bible and The Book of Mormon, we have the resources to establish the truths that God has given us. We went throughout the rest of our day, enjoying the great weather and going to our appointments. But our last appointment of the day dropped. So we found ourselves with an hour to see what we could do. We were walking to T-Central to catch a subway home so we could contact around the area by our apartment. But Elder Downing asked if I wanted to walk home, and I had been thinking the same thing, so we went on our way. But as we walked home, we ran into Sofia, again. Which, Stockholm is not a huge city, but there are a lot of people. So to see her, was really cool to us... She thought it was a little creepy. But we laughed about it and had a good time. 
This is four stories underground. I don't know how that poor pigeon made it down there.
Rickard is doing great. He feels like so many things have improved since he has started implementing God's principles into his life. He got a job, accepted to school, and he feels great about life. He is planning on getting baptized this month. We won't get to be there for that day, but it's great to know that I have a friend who has recognized the peace he can receive from all this. It's that simple peace that I try to share with others. Most people don't realize the good they could receive, so it's a joy when someone like Rickard has progressed to this point and is able to see the blessings he has received from following God's commandments. 

Monday, May 4, 2015



I haven't really seen the viking blood in Swedes until this week. We had a holiday called Valborg. Basically, the Swedes burn huge piles of organic waste, get drunk, and take the next day off. It's their way of welcoming in Spring. As we were standing around the pile, waiting for it to begin, I saw a line of torches coming our way. They were led by a group of six Cub scout-aged kids, hungry for fire. Then they all circle the pile. When the cue is given, the torches are unleashed. On the cue, some of the kids threw the torches to the top. The perfect arcs the torches made were reminiscent, in my mind, of the vikings as they would burn and pillage buildings. The crowd quickly changed shape as the smoke charged out of the fire and the heat built. We left before we got to see it all die down, but I thought it was a pretty cool way to definitively put an end to the winter.
Springtime is here :)

On Wednesday, we finished the work we began on the ward list. We were super excited to be done, and now be able to move forward in getting contact with them. But as we were in the church talking, a lady came in. She had seen us go into the church and decided to come in and ask us some questions. We ended up talking to her for almost two hours touching on many different subjects. She thought it was interesting, and said she'd drop by church one day. As she left, we talked about how when we show our interest and take responsibility for others, then we will be given more opportunities to serve. 
Landscaping service project with the youth of Täby and Stockholm wards.

On Tuesday, we had a lesson with one of our friends named Lyle. He is a Born-again Christian, and has a strong faith in God and Jesus Christ. But he was struggling with the thought of people dying without accepting Christ in their lives. We talked about it, and from what he has read in the Bible, that is his understanding. But we talked about our relationship to God, as a father to his children. We have a Heavenly Father who cares for all of us. And He has created a plan, not to condemn us, but to allow everyone an equal chance. We turned to 1 Peter 3:19 to show that there is a chance to learn and accept Christ later on. Just as on Earth, there are conditions that must be met. But we all will have that opportunity. Our Father in Heaven cares about all of us, and for that, I am grateful.

1 Peter 3:19  By which also he went and preached unto the spirits in prison; 

We celebrated Johan's birthday and my year mark with some fried goodness.

*Note from blog publisher, Becca Sweat.  Aldste Sweat purchased a deep fat fryer in November of 2014, while he was serving in Utby.  Here are some of the photos he sent us when he first started using Elder DF Fryer.  I wanted to show his audience these photos hoping it may add some background for the way he celebrated Johan's birthday and his one year mark!  (We had wondered if he packed up the fryer and took it with
The newest addition to my family, Elder Deep Fat Fryer (11/17/14).

Our homemade chicken strips (11/17/14)
Fried Snickers (12/29/14)