Monday, November 26, 2012

I am thankful for you!

Hi family!

Happy Thanksgiving!  A few days late.  We all went to Tours and had Thanksgiving together, we also played football (american obviously).  So funny, it was Soeur Deleu's and Soeur Mejia's first time playing football ever in their life.  Soeur Deleu learned the "7 banana" trick, aka rush the quarterback.  She was definitely one of the MVPs of the team.  Soeur Grewar popped a blood vessel on her finger so she has partial use of her right.  Aka I had to wash her hair for her two days ago.  And Soeur Mejia, I think still at the end of the game thought we were playing by rugby rules.  It was really fun.  At the end, we were running for our train and got on the train.  About five minutes later Elder Burgess turns to me and says, "what if we just got on the wrong train?"  and come to find out we had. ha so we were in St. Pierre for about two hours before catching a correct train back to Angers.  Overall,  it was an awesome Thanksgiving.  We all have so much to be grateful for.

On Friday we had our activity we had planned by the missionaries "faisons le tour du monde."  All of us in the ward are from different places right now (USA, France, Peru, Canada, Australia, New Zealand) we had a spiritual message and then it was to celebrate the diversity of everyone but how the gospel is what has brought us together.  It ended up being really good, some members brought their friends who were able to meet missionaries and meet members and learn a little more about the church, less-actives came and the members got to know each other better and were going out and meeting new people.  So overall, it went really well.  We were stressed right before (but it was still fun) and it ended up working out.

Oh, I wanted to tell the story of Nadege since I didn't really get the chance to last week because it was so amazing.  She told us a little more last week when we went and visited her while Soeur Mejia and I were in Versailles for a couple of days.  She was contacted by Soeur Horn and Soeur Jenkins during exchanges on the street at night just before they went home.  Nadege said that usually she would just say "ça m'interesse pas" and not pay attention but that night for some reason she didnt.  She had just seen the reportage on mormons a couple of nights before and the two missionaries approached her, and it was dark and they were both pretty new so their french was very broken but they just said, "we are missionaries" and then they pulled out a Book of Mormon.  She said she couldnt really understand what they were saying too much but she saw their badges and she saw the book and just thought, "sure why not" so she set up a RDV for the next day.  The next day, Soeur Horn and I went to go and teach her (right before the first session of conference).  She said it was when we came that first lesson that she felt something different.  She said she had always been a happy person but there was something different.  I remember the first lesson she asked us what made us so happy because we were always smiling and she could see that we were really happy and she wanted that too. From the beginning she progressed so quickly, she came to church every week after that, we met her most days during the week.  The second time after she went to church, we walked home with her and ended up having a really spiritual experience and invited her to prepare for baptism and she agreed.  When Soeur Mejia and I were there with her that night she kept talking about how she knew there was support of members and she would be joining a new family, etc. etc.  I wanted to make sure she had a testimony of the doctrine of the gospel so I asked her, "do you have a testimony that the Book of Mormon is true?"  She said, "Oh, yes, Soeur Chard, I will tell you how I have a testimony of the Book of Mormon."  Our last lesson Soeur Horn and I taught her together was really emotional for her and basically we told her the importance of gaining her personally testimony of the Book of Mormon and invited her to really get on her knees and pray to know it was true.  She said a couple of days later had been really difficult for her and she was in the bathroom just crying and just fell on her knees and prayed to know that the Book of Mormon was true.  That day she started looking to move to a different apartment because there were some problems at home and Soeur Horn and Soeur Hurrell texted her to see if all was okay, she told them the problem and ultimately they were able to help her find a place to stay with one of the members.  And there were experiences like that that for Nadege showed her that God was aware of her, loved her, and was showing her the correct path to grow closer to Him.  It  is people like Nadege that make all the hard days of a mission worth it because when you see the gospel change somebody's life like that you begin to understand more the incredible blessings that we all have because of the gospel and how much it brings us every day. 

Have a great week everyone!  Danielle, I am praying for you, you are prepared, I promise.

I love you!
Soeur Chard 

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