What is up Gang?!
Nice work at the sectional J&M!! Mom--your week just sounded too exhaustingly productive if you ask me (granted anything that involves the word "caulking" would warrant that opinion from me)! Dad-- alright already i get the point about your missionary work rant! hehe. and please tell me that that was you and josh who decided to stop and get those wyoming fireworks. oh and happy Father's Day next week! "why dont you get yourself something real nice" and then ill have a real gift for you here. ha. Tara--i started a letter to you today and was so excited to get another one in the mail. Joshy--i want to hear how you like the feel of your new racquet? thats pretty sweet! halle--girlfriend!!! i absolutely loved loved loved the picture you sent me of you on the podium with your medal! so cool!
Well, the work goes well. We set out this week determined to teach 20 lessons. And yeah....it didnt happen. BUT, we taught over twice as many as the first two weeks of the transfer and we set a baptismal date! That's what I'm talkin' about!! (If I may borrow Dad's new favorite phrase.) Her name is Nadia Lopez and she is from Cape Verde. We were mining the area books a while back, and it was kinda a mystery why the missionaries said she didnt seem interested and stopped teaching her, so we decided to investigate and find out what the story was. She was way excited to meet with us. She doesn't have much religious background, but she says she just feels good when she comes to church and when she has the missionaries over. So, it is so fun being able to teach her why she can feel that difference. In a lot of ways she's like teaching a child (like she had never heard of moses or abraham or read any of the Bible), and it is so refreshing! I know that for the honest and earnest seeker, all big concerns about our church and being baptized can and will be resolved (hullo truth on your side gives you a little edge up), but sometimes people get these crazy ideas (example--being re-baptized, even with authority, would mean that they didnt believe in Christ before or something) that really limit their progression. But Nadia is totally open and willing to do the work and make the changes necessary to be a member of the Church! And there are some other people in our ward who are from Cape Verde as well and they have already been great about welcoming her, teaching with us, and are getting excited about coming to her baptism on July 3rd. Hey, our zone is "Dreaming of White" and miracles happen every day.
I haven’t actually ever heard it from President myself, but I guess his “miracle of 2010” came about because one night he woke up & just felt the spirit really strong. So he went to his office & prayed, & I don’t know how he described it, but something like somehow he felt like he “felt” the keys he was given, for his calling as president of this mission, turn. And that he kind of had a revelation of where things could go. You know how I said that there have been > 100 baptism already this year? That might not sound like a whole lot, but when you compare it to the fact that, that’s more than ALL of last year, it’s sayin’ something! Anyway, I don’t know the details, but good things are happening in the mission.
Last week we had FHE with a two sisters (marie and kiki is what they have us call them) in the ward, and one of their non-member sons, and it was awesome. It probably helped that she didn't force feed us, but mostly it was cuz after the lesson and dinner, we were talking and Sister Nikiema said something about dancing in Africa. And so I asked her to show us and teach us. (Hey gotta profit from bein in a very African area!!) And I think she loved it cuz she got up and turned on some nice chill african style music and man she went to town. I was really glad her son had left, because we had an awesome girls dance party! (keep in mind these sisters are like 50 years old, but dang they still got it. they got some moves!!)
Another good night this week was when we were teaching English class to a bunch of men (mostly African) and I know I sounded super dumb when I asked if they knew the ABCs. haha. But, no, they didn't and they didn't know how to say the alphabet in English. And you know--that's kinda a good foundation to have! So we practiced and then we sang the song a couple times. And they loved it! They asked to sing it again next week even. I can only imagine how hilarious that would have been to pass by a bunch of old African men singing the ABCs with these little American missionaries. The things we do as missionaries. gotta love it.
Speaking of old men. There is this super cute, TINY old man in our ward named Frere Micale. We're talking he might be a few inches taller than me...maybe. He drove Nadia and us to church in Versailles on Sunday (it was Stake Conference), and when he came to meet us at the gare, the cute thing still had the huge sticker showing the size of his pants on the bag of his leg. He lives all alone, had obviously bought new pants, and didn't have anyone to tell him that he needed to take the tag off before going out in public! I know it probably wasn't super dignified, but I couldn't help but just being endeared to him and squatting down to give him a hand. You know how I have a weakness when it comes to cute old men!!
Two best public transportation sitings of the week:
1. little boy using the wall inside the train station as a urinal while mother stands by waiting for him to finish. for real.
2. little girl getting bored while standing and waiting for her mom to finish talking on the phone. So she sees a little crumb of food on the ground and picks it up and puts it in her mouth. oh how i wanted to cry!!!
Well, sorry I dont have very funny stories for the week. I love hearing about your adventures from home and am glad things are going well! I dont remember her name, but one of the church leaders who spoke at the conference yesterday (transmitted from Salt Lake), talked about 3 ways to be virtuous and strong or something (dang i need to pay attention better), and they were reading your scriptures every day, praying every day, and smiling!!!
Mom I loved that you talked about laughing in your e-mail, because it's so true--laughing and smiling give us power and make life so much better! I know I sure have a lot to smile and laugh about. I'm grateful for you guys and I miss you, but I am so grateful for this opportunity to be a missionary. I am sure blessed.
Love you lots and lots,
ps ive been waking up with these new huge bug bites every morning and it is so not a comforting thought!!! hello im in Paris, France, not Guatemala....I am so NOT okay with it!
ps mom your little dialogue on being funny made me giggle. i am not concerned about you, but after this e-mail maybe i should be concerned for myself.
pss LOVE YOU!!!!