Thursday, 18 February 2010

February 12, 2010

Dear family,

This week was another great week. They always are.

At church on Sunday, Jess, Martha and her 2 sons was there. The less active we visited came and said she is going to come next week. One other less active was also there. It was really funny, the elders have an ami that is with a single woman, and they said she doesn't really trust women for some reason. At church I saw her and told her that her purse was cute. She responded by asking me if I wanted to go shopping with her this Saturday after a Relief Society activity. We said sure, but then it got cancelled because she is going to a ysa dance tonight and she wanted more time to get ready. Soeur Bellini and I hope these dances aren't like the ones in the states... we think she will have a good time.

Oh my Jess! She is doing great! On Tuesday we taught the 10 commandments, obey the law of the land, the law of chastity, and scripture study. She said she wants to get married, Jean-Paul just doesn't think he's ready. When we taught scripture study I gave her this pencil that has different colored pencil leads in it for marking her scriptures. When we went back on Thursday, after the prayer she asked if she could show us what she marked from her scripture reading and explained to us what it meant to her. Seriously, Jean-Paul needs to marry her so she can get baptized. After we were making Reese’s peanut butter cups [I gave her some from my Christmas package and she loved them and Soeur Bellini knows how to make something close] and we told her that I am probably leaving soon. She asked if I would be able to come back for her baptism and I told I would be able to. She is just great.

Sylvie is doing well. She said she is praying about the Book of Mormon every night and that she hasn't received an answer yet but she knows one will come. She had a lot of questions about the difference between resurrection and restoration. I thought about it and I am really grateful for restoration and that we will have our same personalities and what not when we are in heaven. Sylvie agreed to come to a baptism on the 20th. It is a ward baptism, it will be good for her to come to it and hopefully church the next day.

We had exchanges this week. I went to Paris Lilas, which is the ghetto of Paris. I stayed with Soeur Fischer-Laudenbasch. She is German and 70. She is the coolest ever. She runs everywhere and it was kind of like going to visit my grandma. She handed me something to put in my pocket and I told her I couldn't because it had a hole in it. She responded "how wonderful, I can fix that!"

We had a rendezvous and before we were trying to pick a hymn to sing. In the mtc they had this tiny piece of paper that lists all of the hymns and their French page numbers, I had hand wrote them on note cards and put them on the extra pages of my little hymnbook. Soeur Fischer saw them and asked if it was my handwriting and I said yes. She put her hand on mine; looked in my eyes and said, "I am so proud of you." it was so awesome. She is a remarkable person and I hope that I go to Paris next transfer. Even though I won't be her companion, I'll still live in the same apartment as her. She is just great and spent the whole time we were together telling me how great I was. In the morning I was getting ready and all of the sudden I see her polishing my boots. She reminds me a lot of grandma Wickham in that regard; where if something needs fixed, if you just leave it somewhere, grandma finds it and fixes it.

This morning we went to a Relief Society lunch and it was good. We were going to relax tonight, but instead we have to go back to Paris to work the expo, so we once again don't really get a p-day. Oh well I guess.

Big new for the France Paris mission! Starting March 1, our mission will include all of the French speaking part of the Belgium Brussels mission. No one is really quite sure what it means. I hope I don't get sent out to by Brussels with Jess's baptism hopefully approaching. I will probably cry if I don't get to go to her baptism.

Love and miss you all!


Friday, 12 February 2010

February 6, 2010

I'd be all about the zona pride
Chere Famille,

I will start off by telling you about pizza pai. Back on October 31, 2009 the elders wanted to go to this pizza buffet and invited us. We drove for about 20-30 minutes due to getting lost. After they move a bunch of tables together because people don't usually go out in groups of 10, they inform us that the buffet is not offered on Saturdays. We ended up at KFC. Soeur Roberts and I were not happy that night, which is probably why I didn't tell you about it. Anyway, this last Wednesday we were on our way to English class and the elders called and invited us to go to pizza pai after with them. We went and it was so much fun. The buffet is a bit tricky, what they do is they bring out a board that is a meter long with 6 different types of pizza on it, none of it resembling anything you would get in the states. They usually only give you 2 meters at a time, but one of the elders said that we needed to start with 3. Notice the word start with. We weren't even halfway done when the same elder told the waitress the prep our next 2 meters. Oh goodness....however, there was a lot of funny conversations. This one elder asked me what it's like being from Arizona. I told him I enjoyed it and he said "if I was from zona I'd be all about the zona pride." right after he asked me what the water is like for wakeboarding in Arizona. I told him I didn't wakeboard and he was shocked. "Really, you don't wakeboard? Wow, I just thought you did." so, I guess I seem like a wake boarder.

We saw Jess this week and it was really good. She totally has a testimony and is praying for a baptismal date. Jess was at church last week and I gave her an extra cantique [little hymn book] that Soeur Roberts had. She was so excited. One of the members asked Jess if she was a member and she said "pas encore" [not yet]. One of the best moments ever.

Jeanne, my dear sweet Jeanne. She couldn't come to English class last Wednesday because there was a train strike and she had gone to Paris, so we went to her shop on Thursday. While we were helping her with her homework she pointed to a pair of earrings and asked me if I liked them. I told her that they were pretty and she asked me if I wanted them. I told her no thank you and then she pointed to another pair of earrings. This finally ended when she gave a pair to Soeur Bellini and a customer came in. the customer was looking at these bracelets and Jeanne goes "Pobst, come pick one." so I went and picked a simple bracelet with a shamrock on it. Jeanne called us yesterday to see if we could come back and help her with more of her homework. We went in there and helped her and when we got there she went into the back office of the shop and said "my friends are here!" oh she is the best. We are thinking about giving her little readings out of our search for happiness because it is easy to read and understand to help her learn about the church.

We went to Martha’s last night and watched finding faith in Christ. It was awesome to watch Jason watch it and to watch him feel the Spirit. It was very tender and at the end he said that he didn't have a favorite part that it all was his favorite, but watching him I could tell his favorite part was in the garden when the resurrected Christ appears to marry. We also watched this movie in Spanish and I could understand most of it. We gave Martha a list of three things to do this week to help Jason’s testimony grow and told her after she had done those things that we would have another rendezvous. I think this was good because it will help her realize that there are things she can do to help him..

Love and miss you all!

We went to visit a less active family in the ward with a member and they hit it off great. The two women have had similar difficult circumstances in their lives and so this will be good. We expect to see the less active family at church on Sunday.

Sunday, 7 February 2010

February 1 2010

quoi de neuf famille!

This week was an intense, good week. Very full.

Monday was Paris p-day as I told you. Sadly we didn't see the Eiffel tower sparkle but I did see it up close for the first time. I got to see all the sisters that were in the Paris area and that was cool.

On Tuesday we were supposed to see Jess, but she cancelled. We did meet a really cool girl on the train named Matild that I hope gives us a call. We went and saw our good friend Jeanne and started to help her with one of her English worksheets and then we headed out to meet with one of the relief society counselors. She had a 15 year old son and it was just like being around Aaron for a bit. We talked about various members that the ward wants us to work with because less active work usually only works with member involvement. When it's just missionaries, it is pretty pointless.

Oh Wednesday...the best day of the week. We went to visit Martha and Jason. The last time we saw Jason in his prep for baptism lessons we taught the plan of salvation, so logically, the gospel of Jesus Christ would be next. He was so good and attentive and so happy. We talked about baptism and I saw his excitement fade a little. We asked him the baptismal questions and he answered "oui" to all of them. However, when we asked him if he felt ready to be baptized he looked down at the table and said no. I asked him why he felt that way and he wouldn't answer or even look up. I looked over to Martha and asked why he felt that way and she said she didn't know, but that she thought he wasn't ready. I asked her why she thought he wasn't ready, that he had a testimony and had answered all the questions "oui" and she also had no response. I asked Jason if he would pray everyday this week to know if baptism was right and he said he would and I told Martha it was necessary for him to be at church the next Sunday [every other weekend he is with his dad]. I love Martha, but sometimes I just don't understand her.

We also met with Sylvie on Wednesday and that lesson was great. She had read Alma 7, Mosiah 27, and had started the book of Mormon. We taught the plan of salvation and she listened intently and took notes! I love it! Afterwards we asked her if she had prayed about the book of Mormon and said she hadn't, but that she would this week. Her commitment was Alma 40-42 and 2 Nephi 9. We also gave her Elder Holland’s talk "The Only True and Living God and Jesus Christ Whom He Sent" because she had a lot of questions about the Godhead. She’s a champ.

English class with Jeanne had a very sad moment. She asked us point blank if Brigham young had more than one wife and we had to say yes. She was a little upset, but we explained it to her the best we could since there is a HUGE language barrier [she refuses to speak French with us], but in the end she was ok. She is still defending us in her English class.

On Thursday we went to zone conference in Paris. It was a little sad because it wasn't with the usual people because on Tuesday, the day we are supposed to go to zone conference, I have to go get legal in France. However, it was good to see other missionaries. There were a lot of really good talks and a lot of new ideas for things I want to implement in my life.

After, we went district contacting with the elders and had a really good one. We got into this building and were porting. This one guy answered the door and immediately started speaking English with us. He told us that he still believed in God, but that he had turned towards Buddhist ideas; he felt that most Christian religions were just made up by people. We told him that the beauty of our message was that our church wasn't made up by man, but that it was restored by God through a prophet. He seemed interested, hopefully we hear from him.

The only good thing about Friday was that Jeanne called us and asked us to come to her shop and help her edit a letter for her class. The letter was supposed to be written to a friend that she hadn't seen in a long time. The best part was as follows: I am taking an English class at the university institute and going to the Mormons church on Wednesday nights. I'm not going to convert, but I love the missionaries. They love to talk about their Mormon book and explain to me the documentary-novel "the 19th wife." I listen because I'm broad minded. She also gave us these really cool rings that I will probably wear all my life.

Love and miss you all!