Lyon


Monday, May 29, 2017

5/29/2017

Bonjour ! 
This week was awesome! I'm currently in Lyon, cuz Elder Johnson has MLC, so I get to go on an exchange with the Port des Alpes elders- party ! Not a whole lot happened this week (apologies in advance for the lack of pictures). But we had such an incredible stake conference! Speakers included Elder and Sister Adler, or stake president, and president and Sister Brown. So many good talks, and I got to hang out with all the awesome missionaries in the zone, as well as everyone I've met from exchanges in Switzerland. I love Dijon and I love Lausanne! The highlight from the conference was when Elder Adler did a private Q&A session with all the Amis and new converts that came to the conference. Super spiritual! There was one sister who told her conversion story in Spanish, which her daughter translated to French for everyone. The stake president translated that into German for Elder Adler, while President Brown translated to English for Sœur Brown. It was kind of mind-blowing. Other than that, it's been awesome working with my new colleague, Elder Johnson. We've had some pretty cool experiences, and I'm psyched for this transfer! That's about it for this week. 
Spiritual thought for the week! I was reading in Alma 23, and found something cool in verse 14. It says "And the Amalekites were not converted, save only one; neither were any of the Amulonites; but they did harden their hearts, and also the hearts of the Lamanites in that part of the land wheresoever they dwelt, yea, and all their villages and all their cities." 
At first glance, it's a pretty sad account, but if you look at the start, you'll see that, after all that work, one person was in fact converted. It may have seemed like a lot of work and hardships for nothing, but it was of eternal consequence for the one. This is a one by one gospel. To the missionaires out now, and to those leaving soon, this is an especially important idea. I promise that there is someone waiting for you. Someone whose life only you can touch. Now go feed some sheep! I love you guys! 
Elder Suisse 
Sorry again for the lack of pics, I'll take more this week :) 

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

5/22/17

Bonjour à tout le monde ! 
So apologies in advance for the short email, I'm in Lyon and don't have a ton of time to email before we drive back to Dijon. But this week was so cool! We had some exchanges and mangezvous - nothing super crazy. Weirdest thing we ate this week was probably the pig tails we had with Soeur Cuisiat. Highlight of the week was that the Paris temple was consecrated yesterday! We had the cultural celebration Saturday, which was a huge party. Lots of dancing and music and it was so fun. Then the consecration was fantastic! We went to all three sessions, and it was so awesome! We all cried a ton. President Eyring and Elder Anderson (who served his mission in France), came and it was all so fantastic and I'm just so grateful for the temple! This is the first chance that the members here will have the opportunity to be baptized for their ancestors in their own country. So so powerful. 
Then today, Elder Laney and I drove to Lyon and parted ways. My new companion is Elder Johnson. He seems super cool and I'm psyched to see what else we can do in Dijon (I get to stay another transfer!) anyways, that's the biggest stuff that happened this week. I love you all tons! 
Elder Suisse 

Attached:
All the goodbye photos with Elder Laney! Love our ward! 


Monday, May 15, 2017

Best...week...ever! 5/15/17

Bonjour!
Okay, so this week was super crazy! Probably my favorite week since coming out here. So good!! I'll try and remember everything!

Monday: P-day, so lots of relaxing and then emailing family. Super awesome every week. We ended with a mangezvous chez Soeur Cuisiat, and she made us rabbit stew. Literally just every part of a rabbit chopped up and thrown in a pot. Surprisingly good! Good day.

Tuesday: Exchange with the Yverdonne Elders. I was with Elder Pesnell. We got tons done! We passed a bunch of people and drove a lot but it was super fun. We ended up arriving and hour early to our dinner appointment with la famille Guerin, but that was okay because Soeur Guerin just had us help make dinner (also rabbit. If anyone just really wants to learn how to make rabbit, I got you covered. So much rabbit...). But it was a super awesome spiritual lesson, and I love our ward! And a great exchange too, Elder Pesnell is awesome and a really good example. Another great day.

Wednesday: We had a rendezvous in the morning with a dude named Richard that Elder Laney contacted on the street a week ago (cool story. He told me later that the dude looked like his brother out of the corner of his eye and that's why he contacted him.) We met him in the park and started talking, then this drunk guy came over and started babbling at us and we were super confused and sketched out, but we just tried to comfort him and then he started crying and it was WEIRD and then he was walking away and he said "Jesus est fils de Dieu" (Jesus is the son of God) and we were like "Amen brother" and then he disappeared. Richard was a little weirded out but then we had an awesome super spiritual lesson and we committed him to baptism at the end and he said yes! So we'll be meeting with him regularly to help him try and receive and answer from God by the end of June. Then we drove to Lausanne for zone conference on Thursday and slept over with five other elders in the tiny Lausanne apartment. Party!

Thursday: Zone conference! So so so so so so so gooooood! Lots about the temple consecration and geneology, then Soeur Brown spoke and talked about eternal marriage, and then that was the topic for the rest of the conference (we teased Elder Laney a bunch that the conference was just for him cuz he's going home soon). So President and Soeur Brown and the STLs talked about marriage the whole time, and it was actually super super spiritual. Like, everyone cried a lot. The temple is a fantastic thing, and we're all so so excited for the Paris temple to open! My favorite quote was from Soeur Brown talking about marriage and family and the importance of it. She said with tears in her eyes "Don't you EVER settle for just this life. You deserve eternity." I one hundred percent agree. Weird thinking about all that at the start of a mission, but I am so very glad to be in the one true church and to know that I get to be with a family that I love with all my heart for all of eternity. Anyways, after that, Elder Laney bore his departing testimony and we all cried again, then we had Ecuadorian completos (hot dog things) for dinner. I had my once a transfer interview with president (love that guy), he gave me my recommend for the consecration, and we drove home.

Friday: Poe's wedding! Aaaahhh! So awesome! We went to the actual wedding in the morning and it was awesome! Super small and cute and so good! Then we helped with the reception and it was so so fun! Poe cooked a whole pig in a whole in the ground and that's what we ate, plus some poisson cru (raw fish) and shish kebabs and "fafaru" (fermented, rotten fish. Not my favorite, but apparently lots of tahitians love it). There was a live tahitian band and it was just the awesomest thing ever. We had a blast hanging out with members and I've never seen Poe and Tatiana so happy.

Saturday: Poe's baptism!!!!! Could this week get any better?! Apparently so! Poe got baptized and we all cried and it was so beautiful and I can't even express how great it was! He had this look in his eyes after coming back from changing after the font that I will never forget in my entire life. It was pouring rain the whole time, but stopped as soon as we opened the doors to leave, with a beautiful rainbow (in the words of Soeur Cuisiat "Dieu est grand"). So very incredible. I don't even know what to say about it other than that it made me wish I could live that day over and over and over again.

Sunday: Poe was confirmed and given the Aaronic priesthood. So cool! And in sacrament, Bishop Casagrande opened the pulpit up to everyone to bear their testimonies on the temple, with the consecration being next week. Everyone cried a lot (that seems to be a common theme for this week). I want to recount one really touching testimony that one sister told. She said she was a guide for the Paris temple open house and that they got a lot of really critical and sometimes malicious people trying to work their ways into the tours. She said she had one guy who said that he'd signed the petition against the temple "to keep Mormons out of Paris" and that he was just totally against everything the church stood for. He was super loud and rude the whole tour, until they reached the sealing room. She said that as soon as they walked in, he went silent, then fell to his knees and started crying. The people around him gathered and were concerned and asked how they could help, but he just sobbed and said "My mother passed away a month ago. She's in this room right now." and was silent for the rest of the tour. I just want to say that I know for a fact that the temple is the house of God, where families are made eternal. It is the meeting place between the past and the future, the confluence of both sides of the veil. I don't get to go for two more years, as there's no temple in the mission, but I look forward to the day when I get to go be reminded of my covenants and the purpose of my life on earth. I love the temple and I want to challenge anyone who is able to go to really ponder on its purpose and what it means to you. Anyways, Sunday was a huge cryfest and I'm sure there were like nine other miracles I can't even remember. So awesome. THEN I got to Skype my awesome family! What the heck?! Best week ever!

Anywho, that's about it for this week. I love you guys tons, et que Dieu vous beni.

Elder Suisse

Some of the pig that Poe cooked. Literally had to carry it in on a grate.
A panorama of the food at the wedding. I had to take a panorama. Crazy.
Fafaru. Nothing more needs to be said.
The wedding!!
The party!!
The baptism!! We weren't fast enough to get one with him in baptismal clothes, he was just too excited to get in the font (;
One last comp photo with Dijon in the background. Elder Laney leaves next week...
Our awesome zone!!







Monday, May 8, 2017

"All the Blessings!" 5/8/2017

Bonjour!
This week was so good! Everything's been coming together, and I'm so excited for the next couple weeks! I got to go on a bunch of exchanges with my awesome district, we had quite a few lessons with our fantastic amis, and everything's just the coolest! The work is going well, as far as I can tell. We've officially planned everything for Poe's baptism, so next week's email should be pretty crazy! We have Zone conference, Poe's marriage, baptism and confirmation, as well as Skype calls this week, followed by the opening of the temple and the beginning of a new transfer the following. Should be super cool! As for this week, it was super great too. We had a district meeting in Lausanne, which was awesome as usual. It was Elder Laney's last one, so he talked about all the cool stuff he learned. 10/10 edifying. We weren't able to see Steve on Sunday, but we saw Poe a couple times, passed by Regine, and are starting to really progress with Felina! We had a lot of lessons with members, and I'm really starting to understand the importance of member missionary work. It'd be so much harder to find people to teach etc without all of our wonderful members. So people back home, help the missionaries! And missionaries, appreciate your members! In other news, French is coming slowly but surely. I've gotten super good at smiling and nodding, so hopefully it's just one of those things I'll look back on and see the progress I've made haha. But really though, the gift of tongues is real! I've found that if I've prepared and I'm worthy of the spirit, the words I need to speak come to my mouth without fail in teaching situations. Super cool! Umm, I can't think of anything especially crazy that happened today (all the stores in Dijon are closed again - another random national no-work holiday? probably.), but it was pretty much just a really cool week. Anywho, I love you all tons. Keep up the good work and know that God loves you!

Elder Suisse

Cool picture on the way to Lausanne
One of the many random castles we drive past all the time
Giant snail we found. They're everywhere here, and my first thought was "Oh gosh, I've eaten those before." So that's cool.




Monday, May 1, 2017

5/1/2017


Helloooooo!

This week was suuuuper crazy, so let's see if i can remember everything that happened - always a struggle. First off, I've been out for officially 102 days, so that's super weird. Loving life though, I'm pretty sure I've never been so blessed. Now what did we do this week... We had some super cool exchanges! One pro of Elder Laney being the District Leader is that I get to do an exchange with every elder in the district while he goes with their companions. We did two this week, and that was a huge blast. I got to go on one with Elder Seaman, a fellow bleu in his first transfer, and we got super lost, which was great haha. In other news, we have two new amis this week! Regine is an old investigator who is super nice and a big talker, so we have that one in common. We should be seeing her regularly, so hopefully that goes well. We are also officially seeing Felina twice a week, so that's sick! We get to teach her at the University de Burgogne, so that's a weird flashback to college every time we go for a lesson. Steve is becoming more and more interested, and we have high hopes for him! All in all pretty cool. One highlight of the week: we're all planned and set for Poe's baptism next week! Aaaaahhh! We have zone conference next thursday, Poe's marriage the next day and the baptism on saturday! So so so so excited! Then the temple is being consecrated the week after that! So many blessings, it's a little crazy! What else happened... We had some good mangezvous with members, and a killer CP (Counseil de paroisse - Ward council), and i realized that we've probably got the best ward in all of France, so that's awesome. Transfer day is coming up super quick. Elder Laney is finishing his mission, so I'll be picking up a new companion that week, so apologies in advance if I email that wednesday instead of monday (not for a couple weeks though). That's about I can remember as far as what happened. We've been trying to remember to do that Addler challenge every night. I've also been reading in John every personal study as well as memorizing the Living Christ, and I really feel like my appreciation for our Savior is growing. I love the mission! It's hard sometimes (like when you're totally lost on a bleu's exchange in a sketchy area and it's cold and everyone's mean and no one speaks english), but there's always a positive (I got to get to know my area better, learn more french, hang out with an awesome new missionary, and build character). I love love love being out here!



Elder Suisse



Pics:

The Chouette of Dijon

Elder Laney and I rocking our new hair cuts

The Crest of Dijon

Us at the Cuisiat's (always a party!)
(p.s. the twins in the last pic David says remind him of his brothers...like crazy lots!)