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Autobiography of Christian J. Larsen, con't.

(September 9, 1852 - October 15, 1852)
     9th.  We landed in Hals and went to a Sister Jacobsen, where we had something to
eat.  We administered to her children, who were sick.  Afterwards we returned on
board the vessel and set sail for Brevig in Norway, about 4 P.M.  The following
missionaries for Norway were on board; Elder Christian J. Larsen, president; Elder
John F.F. Dorius, Peter Beckstrom, Svend Larsen, Ole Olsen, Priest Christen Knudse
now called Nielsen, and Teacher Niels Hansen, and we had a pretty fair wind during the
night and reached our destination within ten miles at nine the next day, the 10th.

     11th.   But it became a calm almost,  and what little wind there was, was contrary,
which was also against our wishes; for we had a great desire to be in Brevig on Sunday,
the 12th.  We found, however, afterwards, that Providence had bestowed a special
favor upon us, and although we tried to work our way into port, by tacking towards shore
all night, we discovered, when it became day light, that we were yet about two or three
(nautical) miles from the fjord, that leads up to Brevig, and we then again tacked against
the wind to reach our destination and on Sunday the 12th, we entered the Brevig Fjord,
and when we had come near the city of Brevig, within about two or three miles (English)
about 10 a. m. we were very happily surprised by meeting two of our brethren. Elder
John A. Ahmanson and Priest Jeppe J. Folkman, coming out in a small skiff, not aware
of our coming, but going to a family of investigators living across the water.  Those two
missionaries had just been liberated from jail in Brevig, where they had been held four
days for preaching the gospel or Mormonism, and they had obtained their freedom on
condition that they should abstain from performing any religious act or rite within that
county or district.  These conditions were accepted because they had no means of
communication with the presiding authorities of the church, and they were looking for
our arrival, yet, not knowing when we might come, besides the town of Brevig was in
an uproar and the mob had threatened to kill any Mormon Priests that might attempt to
set foot on shore; for it had been rumored that some more Mormon Priests were
coming from Denmark. When we learned this, we all felt to give praise and thanks to
God, our Heavenly Father, for it now became clear to our understanding, that He knew
the plans of our enemies and had frustrated them, by keeping us out of their power,
and now were in communion with our brethren in such a convenient place and time.
We now accompanied our brethren to a fishing camp, called Bauen, and I, with some
others of the brethren, went up on one of the rocks and implored the Lord for His
guidance in our peculiar circumstances.  We had a very interesting conversation with
one family in that place upon the principles of the Gospel, and they showed their good
will and appreciation by giving us a good meal.  When we again came on board our own
yelled (Zion's) Love) we found the other brethren, whom we had left there, engaged in
singing and prayer, which was a source of joy to me.  We now held a council meeting,
and it was decided that Elder F. Dorius should remain and labor in Brevig and its
vicinity quietly, while the rest of us would proceed  to Frederickstad, for there to be
assigned their respective fields of labor.  I advised the brethren to work in wisdom,
and always seek for the guidance of the spirit of God, and several of the other brethren
also gave expression to their feelings, and we had a very pleasant time together,
because the spirit of God was present to a very great degree, although that important
meeting was held in the bowels of a lion, (Zion's Love). After this meeting was
dismissed we, Ahmanson, Dorius, Folkman, Fred Andersen and I sailed to a place called
Satre near Brevig, but not in view of the town, and we held a good meeting with the
saints who lived there, and we spoke encouraging to them in their faith. This was in the

     13th.  We went to our rented hall and slept there that night.  Elder Dorius and I
visited some of the saints, and administered the ordinance of laying on of hands to Sister
Isackson and F. Anderson, and we also blessed the child of Niels Isackson and encourage
the new saints that were present to be faithful.  When the two brethren, Ahmanson and
Folkman were ready. Elder Dorius and two of the brethren took us in a boat out to our
Mission Vessel, "The Lion."  We set out for Frederickvarn, on account of the darkness
that set in, and because it is very difficult to navigate on the Norwegian coast under such

     14th.  At five o'clock in the morning we again set sail for Frederickstad and arrived
there about I p.m. that day, having sailed ten miles (Norwegian) and we were well
received by Emil Larsen and his family at their home in what is called Vaterland, a
suburb of the city.  We next visited the branch president, J. Johansen, and found him am
his family all well.  In the evening he held a meeting in the house of Emil Larsen, and
Brother Ahmanson and I administered the ordinance of laying on of hands to Brother
Ole. We appointed Brother Emil Larsen clerk for Frederickstad Branch. Elder Peter
Beckstrom and Priest Christian Knudsen (now Nielsen) to labor in Frederickstad Branch
and Elder Ole Olsen and Teacher Niels Hansen to travel in country districts towards
Christiania, the capital, to try to open the way for the gospel there, and that Priest
Folkman assist these brethren as much as wisdom would dictate, and to introduce them
to some friends that he had found before.  As Brother Folkman was not in possession
of a passport, he would be liable to be arrested at any time for vagrancy and perhaps send
him back to Denmark or Brevig, where also his passport was in the hands of the police.
At this meeting it was also decided to get up a petition to the government for obtaining
recognition and the right to preach and administer the gospel under protection of the law
of the land.  Such a petition had already been sent from Risoer and Brevig but we had not
yet received any answer to it. We blessed Brother Johansen's child and I and some of
the brethren talked, teaching upon our doctrine and also administered the sacrament.
This meeting lasted during the night till between 2 and 3 a. m.

     15th.   I wrote some letters in the forenoon, and in the afternoon, about three o'clock
Elder Ahmanson, Svend Larsen and I went on board the vessel "Lion" intending to sail
for Risoer but we were overtaken by darkness, and did not reach farther than Arrestholi
where we therefore stopped over night, having sailed only half a mile.

     16th,  Thursday.  We sailed seventeen miles and reached Fredericksvorn that day.

     17th.  Started again at 2 p. m. and went ashore on what is called Jomjruland
(Virginland) to buy some provisions, and then sail again, but on account of contrary wind
we did not proceed more than seven miles (Norwegian).

     18th, Saturday.  We went ashore again and stopped by a farmer, by name: Anders
Hansen, and we had a good opportunity to preach the gospel to him and his family, and
they all paid good attention.  They sold us some provisions very cheap, and we left their
with a good impression, and proceeded on our voyage, (13 miles) to Risoer, where we
arrived about 5 p.m. and went at once to Brother Larsen's home, where we spent the
evening very pleasantly in conversation with some of the saints.  A few new converts
had joined the church, by baptism, while the missionaries had been away, and we did
our best to cheer them up to keep their covenant.

     19th.  Several of us went to Levang, about one mile (Norwegian) from Risoer, where
Brother John Olsen baptized four persons, and Elder Ahmanson and I confirmed them,
by the laying on of hands, and I explained to them the great importance of keeping that
holy covenant, which they had just made with God, and to stand firm and faithful through
all circumstances, because the Lord intended to have a tried people.  After prayer and
singing, we returned to the town, where we held a public meeting in the evening in
Brother Svend Larsen's house, and quite a number of strangers were present and I
preached to them. Afterward we partook of the sacrament with the saints and we felt a
great outpouring of the spirit of God upon us.

     20th.  I wrote a letter to the saints in the Greis branch, Denmark, and afterwards,
in company with Elder Ahmanson, I visited the saints  in their several homes,
encouraging them to faithfulness.  In the evening we held a meeting in the home of
Brother Svend Larsen, where I and several other brethren bore our testimony, and we
all rejoiced.

     21st.  I wrote a letter to the saints in Fredericia, Denmark, and also one to Pres.
Forsgreen.  Later in the day I visited some of the saints in their homes, where I also
found opportunity to explain the gospel to some strangers.

     22nd.  Elder Ahmanson and Svend Larsen went to the city of Arendal, with the
intention of purchasing a suitable ship for emigration purposes for the saints.  I stayed
at home and wrote a letter to Brother J. C. Olsen.  I afterwards visited some of the
saints in their respective homes, and I blessed the child of Sister Evens en.  In the
evening I conducted a prayer meeting in Brother Svend Larsen's house; a mob had
gathered  outside and made some disturbance, but this only had effect of making the
saints more fervent in their prayers.  I occupied some of the time in speaking, imparting
instruction to the saints and encouraging them, and we all felt highly blessed.

     23rd, Thursday.  I wrote letters to Pres. Forsgreen and H.P. Jensen.  In the
evening the brethren returned from Arendal.  We visited the parents of Sister Ingeborg
in the evening, with a view of convincing them of the truth.

     24th.  I spent some time by writing.  Later in the day, in company with Elder
Ahmanson, Svend Larsen and John Olsen, I was upon a mountain and had prayer and
gave praise to God for His mercy.  In the evening we blessed Sister Ingeborg and also
a child of Brother S. Larsen, that was sick.

     25th.  I visited some of the saints and bore my testimony to some strangers but they
were not converted.  This was in the house of Henry Evensen.

     26th,. Sunday.   I administered to Elder Ahmanson, who was sick,  and he became
well at once.  We then went to meeting and on the way we were joined by Brother Henry
Evensen, who had just returned from a voyage to Denmark.  He had the pleasure of
baptizing Halvor Torgersen, while he was away.  The meeting was opened at 10 a.m.
and I and several other brethren spoke to the saints, encouraging them to faithfulness
and good works, and to be prayerful all the time.  At this meeting it was proposed and
sustained that Brother Henry Evensen act as clerk and recorder for the Risoer Branch,
and to assist Elder John Alsen, the branch president, in the work, connected with the
branch in that city and the country round about. Also that Brother Aaron Olsen was
ordained a Teacher.  I and Elder Ahmanson ordained him to that office.  We also
blessed one of the sisters who was sick.  We spoke to the saints, laying before them their
duties to the brethren who held the Priesthood to preside over them, to pray for them,
that they might be wise in all their doings.  In the afternoon we had a  large congregation
and I occupied all the time in speaking, and the spirit of God was with us in a great
measure, and we felt to give God the glory for it. After all the strangers had left, Elder
Ahmanson and I administered the ordinance of laying on of hands, confirming Halvor
Torgrimsen a member of the church, and we next partook of the sacrament and also
spoke to the saints, as the spirit lead us to speak in regard to their duties and obligation
We also had the opportunity to speak with two young women (girls) and to convince
them of the truth of the gospel.

     27th.  This day we visited the saints in their respective homes, admonishing them to
faithfulness in their duties.

     28th.  Visited some of the saints and administered to a sick child, belonging to
Brother H. Evensen.  In the evening held a meeting in the home of S. Larsen.  I was
lead by the spirit to address the saints concerning their duties and to sustain the servant
of God by their faith and prayers, even all, from the Prophet Brigham Young in Zion
down to the very least of the offices in the church, showing them that every member on
the human body was necessary for the performance of its functions and use, and they
could not be dispensed with. Several of the brethren bore testimony to what was said.
It was agreed to create a saving fund,  by free will donations,  for the benefit of the poor,
and that Brother H. Evensen be the treasurer for said fund.  We also administered to a
brother who was sick, and then dismissed by singing and prayer.  Later one of the girls
referred to before, was baptized by Brother John Olsen, and Elder Ahmanson and I
confirmed her by the laying on of hands.

     29th.  I spent the day in writing and studying.  In the evening we held a prayer
meeting in Brother S. Larsen's house, but as quite a number of strangers came in,
we turned it into a public meeting and several of us spoke, presenting the principles of
the gospel,  and we were supported by the spirit of God.   Outside the house there was
some mob demonstration, but we were not disturbed inside. Thanks to God for it.
Later in the evening. Brother John Olsen baptized the other girl, before referred to,
and in connection with Elders Ahmanson and J. Olsen, I confirmed her a member of
the church.  Closed the day with singing and praying.

     30th.  This day I wrote a letter to my girl (in Aalborg) and also to Elder H. P.
Jensen.  I had an opportunity to explain some of the principles of the gospel to several
persons, and in the evening we held a meeting in the house of Brother John Olsen, the
president of the branch,  and the spirit of God was present in a high degree, but a mob
outside used every means in their power to disturb us, yet they did not commit any
harm or violence to any of us. At midnight;, the mob dispersed and we continued our
meeting a while longer, encouraging the saints as we intended to sail for Brevig the next
day if the wind would be favorable.  We prayed earnestly for Sister Maria, who was blind
that God would restore her sight, and then we had prayer and retired.


     1st.  In connection with Elder Ahmanson, I administered to a sick woman and a
girl.  I received a letter from Pres. Forsgreen containing some encouraging news from
Zion.  In the afternoon about 5 o'clock, we, Ahmanson, S. Larsen, H. Evensen and I,
went on board "The Lion, " and set sail for Brevig, but did not reach the mouth of the
fjord before midnight and therefore stopped there.

     2nd.  Early in the morning we sailed up the fjord to the town of Brevig, where we
found Elder Dorius at our rented hall.  Here I received some letters from Elder
Beckstrom from Frederickstad in which he asked my advice concerning certain matters
pertaining to the saints in that branch.  Elder Ahmanson and I visited some of the saints
in their homes, among which was a Taylor Ulstad and his wife, who both had apostatized
from the faith, but had not at that time been excommunicated, and we found them very
stubborn, with all we did to convince them of their error, but to no use.  I went to the
mayor of the city to have my passport registered, and by him I was strictly forbidden
to preach and to perform any religious act or ordinance pertaining to our doctrines,
under penalty of imprisonment and fine.  The same official constraint had been placed
upon me in Risoer, but it only had the effect to give me an opportunity to bear my
testimony to them for the truth of the gospel, as proved by the Bible.  In the evening we,
several of us brethren, rowed over to the other side of the Fjord (in Bamble parish) to
Gunner Sorensen, where we held a meeting. Elder Dorius and I preached, and Elder
Ahmanson closed with prayer. About midnight we returned to the city.

     3rd.  We held a council meeting in our rented hall in town, and we agreed upon the
following: That Elder Ahmanson and Henry Evensen remain and labor in Brevig, Skeen
and the country there about, and that Elder Dorius sails with us to Frederickstad.  In
the afternoon we again held a meeting in our rented hall, but we had taken the precaution
to speak to one another, so as to be safe from the law officers, but as several strangers
came in, we told them that we were forbidden to preach publicly, we had taken this
course, talking to one another, but were perfectly willing for our visitors to be present
and hear what we were talking about and the spirit of God was with us.  In the evening
we held a meeting in a suburb, called Saetre, where only the saints were present, and
we had a very enjoyable time with them and instructed them in their duties and
encouraged them. to faithfulness.

 4th.  I wrote a letter to Pres. Forsgreen, and afterwards, we. Elder Ahmanson,
Dorius, H. Evensen and I, visited Shoemaker Jens Jensen and carpenter Isacksen,
and explained our doctrines to them and when we left them, we felt impressed that they
would embrace the gospel, as they had exhibited a very friendly disposition.

     5th.  In company with Elder Dorius and S. Larsen, I boarded the vessel, "The Lion,
and set sail for Frederickstad, but a mob had gathered before we got off, and they made
some noisy demonstrations as we departed, without doing any harm.

     6th.  We reached the mouth of Frederickstad Fjord about 8 a. m. but we could
proceed no farther, on account of contrary wind.

     7th.  On account of the contrary wind, we were unable to proceed, and we, therefore
went ashore to get some provisions, and in landing, our vessel ran aground.

     8th.  We succeeded to get our vessel afloat and set sail, but the wind was against
us, and we, therefore, used a small boat and rowed, landing us in the suburb Waterland.
Later I and Brother Niels Hansen returned to "The Lion" to bring the other brethren in
as they were left without anything to eat.  We succeeded in getting the vessel "The Lion"
off the ground, and came back to Waterland before it became dark.  In the evening we
had a well attended meeting in the home of Brother Emil Larsen, and many strangers
were present. Elder Dorius and I bore our testimony to them and a good spirit prevailed
throughout, and the saints felt happy.  A girl, by the name of Emilie Halversen, was
attacked by a fit of convulsions, and I, in connection with the other brethren present, laid
our hands upon her, and in the name of Jesus, and by authority of the priesthood, we
rebuked that evil spirit and she was instantly relieved and we gave God the glory.

     9th.  I visited some of the saints this day, and also had a conversation with a man
of the orthodox believers in the Lutheran persuasion, and tried to convert him, but in
vain. In the evening some of the brethren who had been out as missionaries in the
farming districts, came in and reported.  Elder P. Backstrom reported that he had been in
Christiania and had tried to obtain an audience with the king, who at that time was in the
Norwegian capital, but he did not succeed. His object was to obtain from him a decision
that would grant us religious toleration.

     10th, Sunday.  This day I held fasting.  We held a meeting in Brother Mons Petersen
home in Orii and we had a good time. Two persons requested baptism. Several of the
saints in that locality returned with us to Frederickstad where we held a meeting in the
evening, in the home of the branch president, J. Johansen, and I and several other
brethren were the speakers.  At that meeting it was decided by unanimous consent, that
Brother Johan Johansen, the president, should be ordained an Elder, and continue as
president of that branch of the church, that Brother Emil Larsen be ordained a Priest
to do missionary work in the town and its environments; that Niels Hansen be ordained
a Priest to continue has labors in the same localities where he had been laboring before;
and to assist Priest Anders Larsen Ingulsrud, who had been ordained by Elder Ole Olsen
that Brother Mons Petersen be ordained a Teacher, and Ole Filings en to be ordained a
Deacon, the three last named brethren to labor in Onseo parish and environments.  I then
spoke to the saints and the brethren in particular, to be continually prayerful and humble
before the Lord, that they might always have His spirit for a guide.  We next proceeded
to ordain all the before mentioned brethren, and afterwards partook of the sacrament,
and all of us felt to rejoice in the blessings of God. After the close of this meeting we
went to Waterland where Brother Emil Larsen administered the ordinance of baptism
to the two persons from Orli and the branch president, J. Johansen and I confirmed
them members by the laying on of hands.

     11th, Monday.   This day several of the saints were summoned to appear for trial at
the police court in Frederickstad, and interrogated about when they were baptized and
by who, and where performed, and also in what way it was done; also how often they had
partaken of the sacrament.  Elder Dorius and I were next summoned to appear before
Mr. Berg, the mayor of the city, at 2 p.m. We were asked if we had administered the
sacrament, and for what special purpose we had come to Norway, and if we were not
aware of the fact that we were transgressing the laws of the country, and if we would
consent to do so no more, after thus being warned.  We answered respectfully that our
doctrine and faith impelled us to respect and honor all good laws, and furthermore, that
our doctrines were in perfect harmony with the Bible, and that as Christians, they would
not find fault with us for following its precepts.  We took occasion to give the court a
brief outline of our faith and added that if these principles were considered to be against
the laws of the land, then we considered to be ourselves in duty bound, to obey God, by
obeying man. The court demanded and obtained our passports and also our certificates
as Elders and missionaries, but at our request, we received a certificate from the court
to that effect.  From there we went to Brother Johansen, the branch president, where
we had an opportunity to explain the principles of the gospel to a stranger. In the
evening, we had private meeting with some of the saints, to consider matters with regard
to our course to pursue under present circumstances, and it was decided to write and
present a petition to the government to obtain from that source the same religious
toleration as other dissenters enjoyed, and that Elder Sven Larsen and Priest E. Larsen
present it along with some of our tracts and if possible to see and speak with the king,
who, at that time, was in Christiania, and thus, verbally present him with a statement
of the wrongs, which some of our people had suffered on account of their religion.

     12th.  I wrote four letters to Denmark, and the brethren, missionaries, proceeded
towards their various fields of labor.  Elder Sven Larsen and I had intended to sail for
Risoer, but on account of contrary wind, we did not get off that day.

     13th.  The wind was still unfavorable, wherefore we concluded to remain in
Frederickstad till Monday, the 18th, and make visits among the saints and our friends
in the neighborhood, and that the brethren, S. Larsen and E. Larsen, make the trip to
Christiania by our vessel, "The Lion, " to present the petition before the king.  I wrote
three  letters this day.  In the evening we held a meeting at Emil Larsen's and quite a
number of people were in attendance. A certain candidate for office was present to
oppose us, assisted by some school teachers, and they did do their part to disturb our
meeting, and they, for that purpose re-iterated the old lying stories about the prophet,
Joseph Smith, but, by the aid of the Holy Spirit, we were able to confound them success
fully.  They therefore, claimed authority from the police to act as they did, of which we
became convinced, when the mayor and several of his assistants suddenly appeared and
ordered us to desist from further proceedings.  I tried to convince them that our religion
was in harmony with the Bible which was their own standard for their religious belief,
and that laws of the land granted toleration to all Christians, and we considered ourselves
as Christians, but to no effect upon them, for they showed very great hostility towards
us as a people.  When the hostile crowd had all left, we held a prayer meeting, and the
saints exhibited much zeal in their prayers for themselves as also for those who had
opposed us.

     14th.  Thursday.  In company with Sven Larsen and Jeppe J. Folkman, I visited
two families on Trarud and we had long conversation with them concerning the principle
of the gospel, when we left them to go to Ingulsrud, did we happen to meet the country
judge, Birk Reikewald, who ordered us to state our destination and our business, and
when he learned who we were, he ordered us to return to Frederickstad forthwith, to
which we objected, but soon after our arrival at Ingulsrud, we were face to face with
the county sheriff and a posse of ten men, who arrested the brethren and took them to
the county jail, while Sven Larsen and I were ordered to walk back to Frederickstad,
arriving there in the evening.

     15th.  This day I fasted.  About 9 a. m. an officer presented himself with orders
from the chief of police. Mayor Berg, to accompany him at once to his office. I was
no sooner inside the office door, than I was ordered to follow the officer to the jail house
I requested an explanation from him about why I was put in jail, but he only replied
that all that I had  to do was to follow the officer and be gone.  I was placed in what was
called the citizen's room, where I found two sea captains arrested, to viz. : Jensen and
Jacobsen.  They were in prison for disturbing the public peace, and were of the Methodist
persuasion and very noisy in their zeal, especially was Jacobsen so, and he finally
became full crazy on religion. Elder Sven Larsen was arrested and lodged in the same
prison with us that afternoon.  We, of course, bore our testimony to our fellow prisoner
the two skippers, and Capt. Jensen finally embraced the gospel and joined the church.
From that date to October 31st, we were arraigned for trial by the police court in
different localities, but I am not able to state in detail all the proceedings because I have
lost one leaf of my daily from that period.


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