I hope you all had a fabulous Thanksgiving and ate lots and lots of turkey;) Thanksgiving isn't celebrated in France, but we celebrated it quand même:) I'm so thankful for many things in my life. My Savior, family, the Gospel, friends, France, food, health, tender mercies, trials, awesome companions, portable heaters, a bed to sleep in, French pâtisseries, our ward in Lyon, president and sister Brown, AND SO MUCH MORE. I am blessed beyond measure. I hope you took some time this week to reflect on your many blessings. :)
So highlights for the week:)
He just keeps getting better and better. We had an awesome lesson about baptism and confirmation with Terencia. He is so ready and so excited to get baptized. He talks about it all the time:) He is all set for the 12th of December, so if you could please please please keep him in your prayers that everything will go well, that would be great. Like I've said his health isn't great so some extra prayers could help. He came to church yesterday! He was SO happy. He kept turning to me and saying how everyone is just so nice and welcoming. Before he left he told us that he felt like he was in a big family :) and that is exactly what the Gospel is. A giant family. All united helping each other make it back to our Heavenly Father. Also he has been completely coffee free for 4 days now! My favorite thing about being a missionary is watching people change. On my mission I have seen the Gospel change lives, including my own. It's a beautiful thing to watch someone become converted to the Gospel they once knew. :)
She is so great!! We were able to see Sarah twice this past week. We talked about temples in our first rendezvous and she was so touched. She's been looking around lds.org and she saw the photos of the Paris temple and she was wondering what the temple was all about, well we just happened to teach her about the temple after she saw those pictures. She really loved the fact that we can do work for our ancestors who have passed on. It was a cool lesson, because now Sarah knows that her goal isn't just baptism, but the temple. That's what we've been trying to do in our mission is really help our investigators see that though baptism is a huge important decision, the goal is the temple. Baptism is just one of the steps to get there. Sarah also came to church and had a great time, she has a huge fear of leaving her house, but always feels calm and at ease when she is at church. She should be getting baptized the 13th so please pray for her as well:)
Ok so a couple of months ago, President Brown launched this initiative to do business contacting. Meaning find small businesses (not chains like McDonalds or something) but businesses that are self owned and operated. Businesses that would be easy for us to walk in and strike up a casual conversation about the Gospel. Well this week we were out trying to find a less active when we saw this super cute postcard shop so we walked over and were casually looking at the shop. The owner came out, she was maybe like 65 and asked us to come in. Turns out she has owned this shop for like 20 years. As we looked at her adorable postcards we explained to her that we were here as Missionnaires for our church and we were sharing a message about Christ. We gave her out card and she gave us a free post card and thanked us for the work we were doing. It was so cool! Business contacting is so cool because it's a cool way to meet people that you normally wouldn't get to meet because they are working when we are out proselyting. We are excited to go back and see if she visited the website and give her a Book of Mormon for Christmas:)
So we were really blessed and had the opportunity to go to President's house for thanksgiving dinner! It was SO good! I haven't eaten something that American since I left America. Haha it was fantastic. And mom, sister brown even made orange jello salad!! I really felt at home:) I'm grateful to be led by the Brown's who love us like we are their own family.
THANKSGIVING PART 2:
So we organized a Thanksgiving activity for our amis and members on Saturday! It was SO fun! We didn't have tons of amis there, but we were actually surprised with the amount of people that did come! Martha our recent convert came and she was so sparked by all of it, she was having the time of her life! Then Laura a recent convert in our ward brought her friend with her! And we had some members and the elders had amis there and it was great! We all cooked for hours getting ready for this and I would say it didn't turn out too bad :) The pictures are on another elders Ipad so I'll send them next week.
COOL P DAY MIRACLE!
Ok so as we were walking here to the church to do our emails we ran into the elders recent convert Gabriel who got baptized on Saturday! He was with his friend Ludovic and he just straight up asked us if we could teach him the missionary lessons!!!! SO COOL! We set up a rendezvous for Wednesday and we are pumped!
This week was a really good one, the first week of the transfer always feels kind of long, but I know now that the week is over the rest of the transfer will fly by. Too fast probably. I want you all to know how much I love this Gospel. It is true. I know that God and Jesus Christ lead this church today through a living prophet.
So I decided for the rest of this transfer at the end of each email I'm going to put something that I have learned on my mission or something that has really touched me, ok?? So for this week it is pray too much. That has been a theme in our mission since way before I got here. I think I have prayed more on my mission than in my entire life. I have gained such a powerful testimony of prayer. God wants to hear from us all the time. Throughout my mission I have met too many people that say, "Well you know I pray when I need something or when life is hard, but when it is going well, I don't really think about prayer or religion." It is so sad. I love this quote from Preach My Gospel, “If prayer is only a spasmodic cry at the time of crisis, then it is utterly selfish, and we come to think of God as a repairman or a service agency to help us only in our emergencies. We should remember the Most High day and night—always—not only at times when all other assistance has failed and we desperately need help” -Howard W. Hunter. It is so important that we communicate with our loving Heavenly Father all the time. It is through prayer that we come to know Him better. :)
I love you all:)
Challenge: Share the Gospel with a neighbor, co-worker, friend, or family member. You can do it!
Soeur Kira Holmes
The beautiful city of Lyon