Tuesday, July 15, 2014

BOLD Miracles

I am waaaay waaaay too blessed and I have NO idea why! I just want to spit everything out but me and my OCD... that can’t happen. So we will start from the beginning! 

On Monday me and Soeur Pettingill were overbooked with our FHEs which is not something that I will ever complain about because I LOVE FHE!! We went to the family Paoli first and our ami Emmanual was there and is totally comfortable to just hang out with the family without us and that is what I call an INTERGRATION family! We only had about 20 minutes because our next FHE was the priority. So we did the quickest but probably most solid retab lesson together and it went perfect! We invited Emmanual to be baptized and he said yes and he explained that he feels like a light inside of his heart! TOO cute! Next step... DATE! 

Then we had the famille Benoit! This is a family that I have been dying to have an FHE with since I got here! Mik has three ADORABLE kids and a wife that is inactive! We met him and his kids at his parents’ house and had a fun lesson. The kids are like 6 8 and 11 and haven’t been baptized but really want to be and are sooooo cute! We had a lot of fun just laughing and telling jokes! It was good because it was our last time doing an FHE together with me and Soeur Pettingill! 

RDVs galore!! On Tuesday we went from rdv to rdv which is also something that I don’t complain about because I LOVE being busy! We said lots of goodbyes for Soeur Pettingill and made the rounds with Tiaré and Slauco! They are both just wonderful! Slauco was feeling goood about his baptism and is still sooo cute with his love for the gospel! We made the ''long'' drive out to the Famille Brice and taught the parents! They are sooooooooooo wonderful and had all of our favorite pastries out for us! We really talked about baptism and how they can know for themselves but also to have trust in God. Once the father is ready then the whole family will be. They want to be baptized together and it was awesome because the wife was like the third companion and testifying with us! We set the goal to be ready as a family in the end of August and I think they will be for sure! 

It was a really good transfer with Soeur Pettingill! Lots of laughter and good times and I am still sooo happy that she was able to help me not be miserable in Toul! To top off a SOLID transfer we recieved a phone call that the sisters in Lyon had an ami that moved up to our area. All we knew was that her name is Mouna and is incredible! She was practicing Muslim and her family is still very active. She read the BoM in 12 days and wants to be baptized but her family is not okay with that and so she was kicked out and that is why she moved up here so quickly. So we ended our time together with this little miracle referral! 

Bright and early on Wednesday morning and we made ANOTHER trip to Paris but this time I wouldn’t be coming back with Soeur Pettingill. In Paris there is a metro stop Chatelet right by St. Meri and ALL of the missionaries pretty much meet there on transfer day to find their new comp. So I spent a solid 6 hours there but I didn’t mind at all because I was just able to hang out with all of my best friends INCLUDING the Chinese speaking elders. I don’t know why but my love for Asians just grows and grows. And turns out that one of them has a best friend... WHO TRAINED MY SISTER!! Holy small world! He is really good friends with the girl that trained my sister in Spain! After all of that I got my new comp Soeur Nielson and we were on our way back to Toul! 

Soeur Nielson is almost 20 and from Kaysville, Utah! She is in her 4th transfer and sooooooo fun! She is probably the fastest unpacker in the world which made it nice for me because I get bored easily! We called our referral Mouna and fixed a time to see her on Friday and get everything worked out for the next few days and crashed! 

The Elders pulling Emily's hair just like in Third Grade
Our branch president loves us and asked us to go to lunch with him and I seriously don’t know how people can spend sooo much money on a meal. Also I still don’t know why I have gone on soo many lunch dates with middle aged men the past couple of weeks but maybe it is to prepare me for the dating scene after the mission but hopefully with younger guys and not being in the awkward third wheel status? We then went to see Evelyne and wanted to watch Finding Faith in Christ but she HAS A BOYFRIEND!! I don’t know how this is possible or how this happened but he was there and wow. Right when the door opened the smell of alcohol and cigarettes followed. I just wasn’t in the BEST mood to be in a smoke infested apartment and that smell gives me a headache so I just straight up asked him to open the window and to stop smoking. It is soo weird because in France on every box of cigarettes it tells you that it will kill you yet people do it. He was COMPLETELY hammered but that made for a pretty interesting conversation about the big bang theory. It was just bizarre because I told Soeur Nielson that this lady has NO ONE and that we are her only connection with the outside world and she just stays in her apartment all day and then we go and she is like a giddy teenager with him which could be cute if the situation was different. 

Then we were off to the tiny village to meet our ami that we found the week before the one named Christianne that worked for Chanel... Only she forgot or something so she wasn’t there but we were able to chat with the Pagots and have a little lesson with them before back to Toul. We decided to wonder around Toul and see what we could find... we found Slauco’s mom!! They are back or didn’t leave or something but they are all still there! So we went to Slauco’s and taught his uncle Johnny... right now he is smoking 20 cigarettes a day BUT he let me take his pack after I left him with a couple and he kissed me on the cheek..... Scarred all over again from men doing that! It turns out that you just have to ask people why they smoke something that says they will die and then they are more willing to give you their pack! MAGIC! 

FRIDAY FRIDAY FRIDAY... no weekly planning got done OR transfer planning. We were stuck in Toul because of the Tour de France and our gps/boyfriend Lee couldn’t figure out how to get us to our destination without going through Toul so after about 45 minutes we were able to escape and we were on our way to Chaumont to meet Mouna and her son Moon. Chaumont is about 2 hours away from Toul and so we got a lot of good music in and talking but no sleeping because I have to stay up. We get there and Chaumont is COOL!! There neeeeds to be missionaries there! It is bigger than Toul I think and there is a lot more going on. We find Mouna standing on the street with her Book of Mormon and ready to meet us! Her son is 30 and a little mentally handicapped. They have NOTHING! No running water, electricity or anything there because it was such a fast move and really are in third world conditions! We had an incredible lesson with them and really got to know them and they are SUCH a miracle! They just love the gospel soo much and want to be baptized more than have water! Our challenge was to figure out a way for them to get to Toul on Sundays so that they can come to church. We started praying HARD from that moment on!

While out forever away from Toul we saw an old ami named Steven and his family! They are also soooo cool and we had a great first lesson with them! They just live sooo far away and there isn’t really a bus or train to get to Toul. But we will find a way for us to be able to see them again while staying inside of our kilometer limit! 

Saturday was filled with more and more miracles! We first went to Evelyne who was soooo drunk and hadn’t taken any of her life or death medicine! It was sooo sad to see her like that and she has completely given up on anything to help her live but we will hopefully see her again in better conditions. 

We were in the process of checking trains and buses to find a way to get Mouna and Moon to church when they call saying that they are just going to hop on different trains and get to Toul somehow... well they did! They arrived in Toul after three different trains and getting caught by the security people! A member met us and helped soo much! Our prayers were answered SOOO much faster than we expected! Our new problem was what to do with her now that she was in Toul. Our branch is the BEST ever and found them a hotel until Tuesday when things will be open to talk with the social about getting help. MIRACLE! Also that is when Moon told us that he wants to be baptized with his mom! AMAZING!! 

We saw all of Slauco’s family and taught them despite all of the creepy winks and not being able to really communicate with half of them. We invited them to church and they all said yes... 

MORE MORE MORE miracles on Sunday! Mouna and Moon were at church AND the branch found them a place to live for 6 months free until everything gets worked out and groceries and everything! Mouna gifted us with lingeré... not entirely sure what we are going to do with it but it is a nice gesture right? It really is from the faith of them that these things are possible! The members here are really soooo set on growing the branch and doing anything that they can to help others. ALSO the Spanish people of Slauco AND his two cousins came to church. So out of the 5 of them only 2 speak French but they all loved it! Normally in Toul there are 35 people there every week but last week with 51 and yesterday with 53 it just shows how things can happen!

Me and Soeur Nielson have waaaaay too much fun together and have had soo many funny things happen already! We are being TOO blessed and I don’t know why we are soo lucky to be here right now in Toul! I am soo grateful! 

Thank you all soooooooooo much for all of your love and support! I am a lucky girl! 


Soeur Emily Johns

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