(Sing to the song "We did it!" from the end of every Dora the Explorer episode)
We did it! We did it! We did it! HORRAY!! Now you see us, we did it!! Nananananananah!!
We worked really hard and we prayed a whole lot, yeah we did it. We did it. We did it. We did it.
We scratched and we bit and we taught 20 lessons, oh yeah, we did it! We did it! We did it! Hooray!!
That's right freres and soeurs!! Soeur Jacobsen and I finally reached the mission goal of teaching 20 lessons this week!! I will tell you one thing... it took a whole lot of work and faith, but with the Lord, all things are possible. We didnt know if we would make it, but the Lord carried us through the finish line, with plenty of time to spare. Let me tell you how it was done...
Well, actually the beginning of the week was spent in Lyon, with a great Zone PDay where we played Werewolf for 3 hours while eating sugar cookies, ha. Fun! Then we had a suuupppper cool exchange with some sisters in the Vale de Saone ward in Lyon. I did an exchange with Soeur De Feo from Rome, Italy!! Took me back to the days with all my wonderful European companions... Miss them to much :,,) They literally tried to call all of their less actives and amis, but NO ONE was free! So we had a day full of contacting ahead of us. Good thing we are both experienced missionaries... so for us that just meant a day full of MIRACLES!! We went to a little, GORGEOUS outer ville called Villefranche. It took us almost an hour to get their on bus. WELL WORTH IT BECAUSE THE LORD HAD PLANNED OUR DAY ALREADY! We immediately began to talk to EVERYONE. Soon hereafter we met a nice lady who invited us to visit her husband with her in the retirement home... so we went and met some nice old folks and then talked to Josiane for about an hour and a half and taught the restoration and gave her a copy of the Book of Mormon. She was such a Christlike woman... we learned a lot from her. We headed into the TINY central ville afterwards and contacted like crazy women! We ended up having 2 other lessons and found one of the coolest elect couples I have ever met in my mission... I was slightly jealous that they were not my new amis... they were so wonderful, and both Soeur De Feo and I had a feeling that they were the whole reason we had gone to this little ville. The Lord puts the people in our path, we just need to be willing to talk to them. So, we had a wonderful miracle filled exchange, which was celebrated with some very delicious and much deserved dark chocolate and coconut pasteries. Yum. Missionary work rules. So we lost 2 days out of our sector because of this exchange, but we felt as if we were able to help those sisters advance their work! Preach My Gospel tells us "Leave every sector better than how you found it." I take this very seriously, thinking also of the sectors that I visit even for a short day or two... the Lords work needs to be done everywhere. Also, Soeur De Feo taught me some cool Italian "Ho del pesce nelle mie tasche."... which means "I have a fish in my pocket."
We got to see some great amis this week including the ADORABLE famille Ferreira. We watched the Restoration DVD and it was the first time that the kids were quiet and payed attention the whole time, and then Nabil, the punkish 10 year old offered the closing prayer... families can be eternal. I can practically see this family in white!! They are progressing SOOOO slowly, but they are progressing. Annabella, the mom, even read this time :) invitations being respected!! WOOHOO!! We saw Marie-Lou and got her a Portuguese Book of Mormon. Shes excited. We got to teach Amandines little sister Gaelle this week by surprise! And the even better surprise... she had stolen her moms Book of Mormon and read and taken notes!! We had to teach her the commandment "Thou shalt not steal", but she read! SO AWESOME! We have only taught her twice, but the crazy thing is is that we think Gaelle could be baptized the 9th of November! And she wants to!! Pray like crazy for her :)
We received revelation this week. Straight up revelation from the Lord. We received revelation that we needed to invite Camille to be baptized the 8th of November. Crazy, beccause her mom is completely against the church and wont give her permission. But we had tearfilled lesson with her and then we all fasted together on Friday to soften her mothers heart... we will see how things go as Camille takes those steps of faith to talk with her mom and hopefully receive permission. Pray for her as well, as she could just as well be our baptism at the end of this transfer.
Friday was an anwer to our prayers... The Sister Training Leaders came to our rescue and we had an exchange in Clermont. We had 2 teams of sisters working in our names sake!! I was lucky enough to be with Sister Bragg... great missionary. We felt prompted to go to a little ville outside of Clermont called Royat. Our excuse was we were going to find some lost less actives, but the Lord knew the real reason. When we arrrived there, and we began talking to people, we met a middle aged man named Yves. He immediately asked us to sit down with him on the steps to do the questionnnaire. However, his friends kept coming up and bothering us. So, we got up and he took us to a table near by where we could sit down without being disturbed. We taught him the restoration. As we talked about Joseph Smith he looked at us and told us "That is compeletly possible." When he recognized the Mormon title, he talked about geneology, because his mom was a professional! He put his glasses on all seriously and looked at us over the table and asked "What do you propose then?"... we exchanged glances and then told him that we wanted to teach him several times a week and we would invite him to read and pray and keep the commandments and change his life if necessary in order to know if our message was true. He agreed full heartedly. We prayed. We fixed our next meeting, and then we were on our way as if it was every day life. Soeur Bragg and I had to pray and thank the Lord for this unforseen miracle. It was just wonderful. We were able to meet many, many other great children of God. Then the Rapinat family strengthened us physically with a delicious meal, and then spiritually by sharing their inspiring conversion stories. Our ward is wonderful.
Amandine taught with us this week. WOOPWOOP!! That was fun. We also discovered that Armelle is still in Clermont! MIRACLE! We hope to start teaching her again this week. Saturday night we were determined to teach 2 more lessons... even though it was freezing cold and dark outside, Soeur Jacobsen and I ventured off into town to teach some lessons. For about 2 hours we talked to everyone in our path... not too many people were willing to stop. We finally taught a lesson to a cool dude from Sweden who is here on vacation. We needed to head home to make curfew... we were worried, because to reach our goal of 20 lessons, we needed to teach 5 lessons Sunday. We made plans. We already had 3 lessons planned, so we would just need 2 miracles! It almost seemed too easy...
We woke up on Sunday morning with hope in our hearts. We went to church and had a very inspiring broadcast from Lyon for our stake conference. Afterwards we had weekly planning... totally normal. We called our amis to confirm our lessons... and they ALL cancelled. Fear kinda struck our hearts. There were some young adults still at the church. We asked them to pray with us before we left. They prayed that we would teach 5 lessons to meet our goal, and off we went into the vastness of Clermont to find 5 lessons, floating on the faith of our remarkable JAs!! We talked to everyone... and I mean EVERYONE! The second person we talked to was a young girl named Gloria. We felt kinda creepy as we followed her off the tram, but things worked out as she is a devout Christian. We had a great little lesson with her and then prayed holding hands in the street... also, I am so impressed with the number of people that are comfortable praying in the streets with us, haha. We also met two super cool guys in Jardin le Coq that we taught lessons too, as well as the most radiant old lady in the world! That was 4 lessons in 2 hours... we went to Jaude and Soeur Jacobsen lead the way to an adorable young woman who loved speaking with us in English... about faith and Christ and the restoration. And then it was done. We had taught 5 miracle lessons in 3 hours. We even had time to spare, so we started wracking up the points and talked to more people! Angels were with us.
We know that it was only through the Lord that these miracles were possible.
I am so thankful for this gospel. I am so grateful for the opportunity to serve the Lord and teach this gospel. I am so thankful for the inspiration of my mission president to help us set goals to teach 20 lessons. Its possible. With the Lord, it is possible. I love Him. He loves you. I love you too. Have a great week.
Avec tout mon amour,