Friday, April 24, 2009

Our First "Friendship Family Night" in Odense

A few days ago we had our first "Friendship Family Home Evening" for some of our young adults here in Odense. Our "friendship Family Nights are:
1. Small family home evenings.
2. Held on our Preparation Day which is Monday night (or other nights not used in the center). --at our home, in the park, or maybe at their homes.
3.Designed especially to get acquainted with and share a message with-- our young adults who have no families here in Odense, or who live alone far from home.
4. We have a large Family Home Evening on Tuesday for all of our Young Single Adults, so our personal Monday family night will be for small groups- one by one, or two by two.

We had our first "Friendship Family Night" Sunday night at the center because our new friend, "Guang"- had to work Monday through Wednesday. What a lovely time we had.

We had Guang, from China..We have enjoyed getting acquainted with her these last few weeks.
We had Khai, a newly baptized member from Burma and India.
Then we had Dan, a Danish Young Adult who has been a member for less than a year. It was a very fine event. What a great group of kids. (They say that they don't mind if I call them "kids."

We began with an opening song. Since we were all from different countries, we had no songs in common. We turned to children's songs-
Khai and Daniel both knew "Row,Row,Row your Boat, so we all tried to sing one verse. Guang wasn't sure. Maybe next time I will teach them all "Popcorn Popping on the Apricot Tree." or "Give Said the Little Stream."
Then came the opening prayer. Dan knows how to pray in Danish- but he wanted to say as much as he could in English. He gave a beautiful, sincere, Danish/English prayer.
Then Carl explained a bit about why we were having our "friendship family night." I found a very good story from the Liahona- August 2007, page 35-
called "Learning to Hope" by Mariama Kallon. This is a story about a young woman who was trapped in a civil war in west Africa. She witnessed the murder of her mother, father and brother.
When we were in Sacramento, our Relief Societies helped put together hygiene kits for a Humanitarian Project. Mariama was given one of these kits and she describes how she shared it with many of her people who were fleeing from the rebels in her country. Later she joined the church and became a missionary on Temple Square...where she visited the Humanitarian Center and discovered, for the first time that her sacred, little kit was sent from the church she had joined. What a moving story. Look it up on under church magazines.
Our lesson ended with a discussion about our center here in Odense and why we are on a mission here.
Our main purpose is to "Bring People To Christ." I asked all three of our group- questions about Jesus when he lived here on earth.
Where was Jesus Christ born?
How many years ago was he born?
What did his father do for a living?
How long was his earthly mission?
What happened to Jesus at the end of his mission?
How is the story of Jesus Christ a message of hope?
What does Jesus Christ have to do with you?
At the end of our night, we had a little meal together- ham sandwiches, apples, grapes, chips, and a tasty Dream Cake with broiled brown sugar icing.
We talked a lot about where each of us were from and what we had discovered in Denmark. What a good way to make friends and learn about other cultures. We are looking forward to many more "friendship family nights."

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