Last week started with a pumpkin carving activity at the Church with the Elders- as you can see I stuck with the traditional out of fear that I would mess anything else up and Soeur Atkins went extremely patriotic with a maple leaf!!
Soeurs Holt and Atkins had two Family Home Evenings last week. The first was with Derlie and baby Julie; she is house sitting in our area and so we taught her the Ten Commandments with hand signs!! This is something she learned as a child during our own Family Home Evenings- we’ve never filmed it unfortunately.
The second FHE was with Soeur Manitta and her family who were moving to France this week. Such a heart breaking fhe- I love this family; we ate Haitian riz djon djon and chicken so good. It’s ok though- Manitta has already invited me over to visit her and eat banane pesee in France!!
It seems as though this week was mainly focussed on contacting new people. Contacting, contacting… a cool Brazilian lady who, if my Portuguese is correct, might have been taught with her husband by the Elders a few years ago before they moved house and lost contact. She seemed really open and invited us back!… Wednesday, contacting… we met a kind gentleman who made us both laugh. He opened the door and after we asked if what we could smell was his cooking, he went on a ten minute rant about how youth these days don’t know how to cook, then they don’t know what real relationships are and that romance is dead. We introduced him to the Book of Mormon only for him to tell us that he was born Catholic and will die Catholic. But then he found out that I was British; he thought that was cool at least and then started another ten minute rant in the fact that the French aren’t like the Brits in that if the French move somewhere and they don’t have their caviar, borsin or red wine then the world is over- the French in his opinion are too habitual… Saturday, contacting… a lady had a nice discussion with us about Christ and his role in her life but she said that she is too stressed with work and children to ever have time for us. Then a cute Haitian lady who took a Book of Mormon and was excited to share it with her grandchildren- so sweet she invited us back…
It seems that President Macron made a visit to Guyane this week. We got time to talk with Trinity’s mum a little bit. She is a really busy lady- this week I am not sure if you have been following the news but the French President visited Guyane and she was his nurse for the time he was here. She’s not interested in the message but she seemed really happy that her daughter had the chance to be taught by us and come to church and activities, etc… Friday evening, we got a phone call from the Elders to go home early because due to the President being in Guyane people were taking advantage to make political statements through protests. It was felt that to be on the safe side we should go home- we did extra language study! This makes us realise that although we follow the news regularly, French news doesn’t really make it to the UK unless it’s really big- e.g. there’s a new President, or something happens that affect us. We had no idea- so will have to find an English language French news website to keep up to date with things. Suggestions are gratefully received.
Teaching continues with new and existing friends. They visited the young man who is preparing for baptism in the hospital; super cute he was telling us about how he isn’t scared of his white doctor because his grandfather was white- that led onto a conversation about genealogy and I showed him my pedigree chart, he loved it and kept on saying “I chose a good church didn’t I? I chose a good church didn’t I?” Something else funny he has been reading a lot in the Book of Mormon during his stay at hospital but in the guide des écritures and told us all about the Kirtland temple!! [The LDS versions have some study helps alongside the scriptures]. …We visited him again in the hospital; he said the prayer and he prayed for us but also that God will help him prepare for his baptism!!
We picked up Soeur Wilna and went to see a local Doctor. He invited us in and we had probably one of the most interesting conversations in French that I have ever been a part of- especially after his friend came and joined us! He is Muslim but not really practicing from Tunisia and his friend is not baptised but was raised by a Catholic mother and Protestant father. We spoke about a belief in God and then the topic turned more to proselyting and why we are here and what they think of our missions. They were very impressed with our sacrifice as young people for something that we feel can truly impact and improve the world. We have been invited back!
We also taught the couple we met last week, where the husband is a preacher. They had read the assigned reading in Moroni 10 and we saw the miracle of the Book of Mormon as it softens people’s hearts to the message of the restored gospel. By the end they were excited to read more, meditate and then pray for the knowledge of the truthfulness. They love the Bible, the Book of Mormon doesn’t compete with but completes the holy scriptures.
The members of the branch continue to be a great support. We went to visit the Lazou family- we made banae pezee together and Mamai just kept offering us food; we left with banane pesee, water melon, oranges, pineapple, and some soya milk that we just had to try. We asked her why she keeps on giving us so much stuff, and she said that she herself doesn’t go out preaching but in giving to us she is doing her part before God. She is so amazing!!
We also dropped off cookies that Soeur Atkins had made for Derlie, the Souverains, the Lazous and others.
Spiritual insights this week are based around the Book of Mormon specifically because I finished the Book of Mormon in French for the first time this week!! yaya!!! I really liked Ether 12.2-3-
“And Ether was a prophet of the Lord; wherefore Ether came forth in the days of Coriantumr, and began to prophesy unto the people, for he could not be restrained because of the Spirit of the Lord which was in him. For he did cry from the morning, even until the going down of the sun, exhorting the people to believe in God unto repentance lest they should be destroyed, saying unto them that by faith all things are fulfilled—”
We should preach the gospel morning until sunset and declare repentance. Sometimes I am very tired but scriptures like this inspire me to continue a diligent ministry and serve an 18 month mission.
Moroni 9.25 – “My son, be faithful in Christ; and may not the things which I have written grieve thee, to weigh thee down unto death; but may Christ lift thee up, and may his sufferings and death, and the showing his body unto our fathers, and his mercy and long-suffering, and the hope of his glory and of eternal life, rest in your mind forever.”
Through Jesus Christ’s atonement he can console you through the experiences that he had. Such a central message of the work of our Saviour.
Love you all – sounds like Soeurs Holt and Atkins have an eventful week coming up- this week we are heading off to Barbados for a Sisters conference and then to Martinique for a Zone conference- cool huh!! We are sad to be leaving our area for so long but are excited to see all the sisters etc!!