Monday, September 8, 2014

Auf Wiedersehen

Hallo Familie und Freundes,

     Here is a great thing about the German language. When saying goodbye to people, there are numerous things you can say:  Ciao! Tschüß! Pfurdi! Bussi! Tschüßie baba! Auf Wiedersehen!  
     I have always before said Tschüß or Ciao; but I have switched to Auf Wiedersehen this week. Do you know what Auf Wiedersehen literally means? 'To see again', isn't that a beautiful sentiment? When I say Auf Wiedersehen, I feel like it is equivalent to the American version of telling someone "see you later!"  or "goodbye, until we see each other again." It's not an end, it's just a short pause between visits.
     Isn't that the beautiful part about the gospel? Isn't that the amazing part about the world that we live in today? With technology and with our knowledge of the Plan of Salvation, it never has to be a good-bye forever. There is always a 'wiedersehen' hanging in the air, whether it will be on Facebook or Skype, or through phone calls, letters, and vacations; there is always an opportunity to see people again.
     Yesterday was my last day of church as a missionary; my last Sunday, not only in Munich, but here in the Alpine German-speaking region. I was expecting it to be super, super sad, but with a 'wiedersehen' perspective, it was okay! Yeah, there was a few times where I was near tears; especially when Sister Motto and Br. Miller (the ward mission leader here) got up to bear their testimonies- both included how much they will miss me and how grateful they are for my service. I was almost a bawling baby at those points, but zum Glück, no tears have been shed..yet! 
     I will be sad to go, it will be hard to take off the missionary name tag, but on a pair of jeans, and go to the movie theater and ice cream shop alone, or even worse, with a boy! (gasp!) But hey, I have had a great 18 months; really the best 18 months I could have ever dreamed of and some of the best experiences. I have laughed so hard that I have cried & I have cried so hard that I have laughed. I have eaten more Swiss chocolate and marzipan balls as comfort food than I ever will the rest of my life. I have met so many amazing people, worked with inspiring servants of God, and learned more than I ever expected. How grateful I am to have been here, but...   
     I need to look forward with faith and look back with gratitude. 
     I do not want to say much about leaving, I am trying to stay focused on Germany while I am here and I do not have much time... But, I do want everyone to know that I love my mission! I love these people, but more than anything, I love my Savior. I am eternally grateful that He paved the way for me to not only come to this world, but to return to my Father after this life. I am grateful that He made it possible for me to repent, and not to just repent from sins, but to align my life and my habits with His. His love has made it possible for me to be more loving, more kind, more patient, more diligent; to have more faith, more knowledge, and more hope. 
     So I want to close my final email home, to all of my friends and to all of my family, "I'll go where you want me to go dear Lord and I'll be what you want me to be." For the past 18 months, He has needed me as Sister Peterson in the Alpine German Speaking mission, but now, He needs something else from me; He needs someone else to do different things. I don't know what that is yet, but I have faith. And, as a very smart man (namely our prophet) would put it, ''The future is as bright as your faith.'' So lets make it shine.

-Sister Peterson

A P.S from Sister Peterson's mom- 
     Even in our private emails between one another, Kori has been adamant that until she gets on the plane on Friday, she is Sister Peterson and has refused to discuss matters of coming home. Though this has been somewhat frustrating to me, I admire that she has wanted to remain dedicated to serving The Lord until the final moment. She has been an example to me in a way that she will never truly see or know. I consider her growth and hope that through her testimony each week she has brought you a little closer to Christ- for truly that has been her purpose as a missionary- to bring the light of the gospel and our Savior to the lives of those she touches.
I received this message from the mother of another Sister serving in this mission:
     "I had the chance to work with Sister Peterson, who will be heading home this week. It was really nice to finally work with her. I've heard so much about her (she was one of the only Sisters I hadn't met before coming here and she was the one I replaced in Linz). She is hilarious and really cool! We saw lots of miracles just talking with everyone, despite all of our plans falling out."
     Thank you for your prayers and your love in supporting Sister Peterson and, in turn, supporting us in sharing her with the people who live in that beautiful part of the world. 
*** No pictures this week, so I wanted to share a few of my favorites:

Sister Peterson and the sisters of her travel group

Sister Regneir & Sister Peterson- last night in the MTC

Sister Peterson & Sister Jenson- her trainer!
Sister Peterson's trainee turned great friend, Sister Henry

One of my favorite pictures from the entire mission

Sister Peterson's second trainee, Sister Wunderlii

Sister Erdenstogt (training in a Driit), Sister Wunderlii & Sister Peterson

Sister E & Sister Peterson were a match made in Heaven

Sister Peterson's greenie buster- Sister Ackerman

Sister Peterson's fourth trainee, Sister Pentz

Sister Peterson reunited with Sister Jenson and Sister Erdenstogt

Munich at last 

Sister Motto & Sister Peterson, the beginning of a beautiful friendship! 

1 comment:

  1. It's going to be hard not to get my fix of Alpine pics -- this blog has been so beautiful! I'm so proud of Kori and her companions and will be waiting to see what comes next for her. I love you all!