Monday, January 28, 2013

Cat Woman

Hi family!

I am loving be with Soeur Searle.  Every picture we take is followed by, "better send this one to the holladay south stake."  It's so fun.  Did I tell you too that Patriarch Falk's grandson, Elder Flitton is my zone leader now too?  So it's just a Holladay party!

Last Monday night we ended up going porting for a little while.  While we were out we sonneried someone's apartment building, and the person opened the door to let us in.  As we walked up the stairs, there's this lady just hanging over the stairwell balcony staring at us.  So we start talking to her and she tells us we can come in.  As we are walking in the door, she says, "I hope you're not afraid of cats."  I see one cat, so all is good.  Walk through the door, I see two cats, then three, four.  I keep seeing more and more cats appearing in this small room.  Huge community bowl of cat food in the middle of the room.  Cat picture images on every single wall. I ask her how many cats she has.  Straight up 15 cats.  In one small apartment room.  So, we start talking about God and how He is there and knows each one of us. (we are still standing up).  I feel a cat jump onto my coat and is just hanging off my coat as I'm talking.  We sit down.  Cats.  Everywhere.  I look over at Soeur Searle and had forgotten she was allergic.  She's just tearing up, and then talking a little about the Plan of Salvation.  I look over, cat dangling off the tablecloth.  So funny.  After the RDV, we kept porting and on the way home we passed by her apt building again.  we see two of the cats looking out at us from the window.  Soeur Searle decides to take a picture, as she takes it, the woman's head appears at the exact moment she's taking the picture.  So perfect, it is captured.  Don't worry, I am bringing a copy home!

Miracle we saw this week, we were porting a couple weeks ago and a woman answered, said she was practicing Catholic, not interested in further but maybe would be interested in reading a little of the BOM.   So last week we decided to go bring her a Book of Mormon.  She answered the door said, "hey, you already came by here."  We gave her the Book of Mormon and she said, "okay, I'll try reading it and then you will come back to pick it back up?"  So we set a RDV for a few days later.  We ended up going back for the RDV and she let us in.  Beautiful french woman with five children, all practicing in the Cahtolic church.  She told us how hard it is to raise her kids in society today because of so many bad influences surrounding her family and that even at school they teach that all the stories in the Bible are fictional myths.  She also said in school they are teaching her kids that same gender attraction, and the difference between men and women is not a big deal, etc.  and how it is really troubling to her.  So she asked us how we were raised and how we had been able to stay believing and close to God.  It was awesome.  She said at the end she will try reading some of the Book of Mormon before our next lesson (on Wednesday).  She is amazing and it was such a blessing to teach someone like her.  

We also found a Chinese girl named Anna last week on the tram.  My entire mission I have had this weird obsession with always contacting asians.  Probably because I have always loved asians.  She is the first asian I have actually taught though!  We taught her Saturday for the first time and she told us how she was Buddhist at the base but has started believing in God a little bit.  It was one of the most simple first lessons I have ever taught my entire mission, it was amazing.  We talked about faith and prayer and at the end we kneeled down and she said her first prayer to God and simply thanked Him for the missionaries and asked if He was there.  It was so cool to hear such a sincere prayer.

Otherwise, all is good.  Soeur Searle is amazing, I don't know what I would do without her.  One of her greatest strengths is her ability to remain calm and carry on, no matter what happens.  She is amazing and I love serving with her. 

Have an awesome week and I will see you soon!!  I love you!

Soeur Chard

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Sisters Chard and Searle . ...Angers!

Soeur Searle Arrives!

Hi Family!

Yes, Soeur Searle and I are together in the end!  I am honestly so
grateful and so happy to be companions with her, it is the best.  She
is basically my angel.

Miracles of the week:

We went to go teach the Dati/Richard family (a family we met last week
with soeur mejia and deleu).  We showed up and the eleven year old
daughter had been readingin the BOM and loved it so much she hid it in
her room so hre other sister couldnt read it.  While we were teaching
them two of their friends came over and we ended up teaching them as
well and setting up another lesson with them for this next week.

We were contacting the other day and stopped someone just in front of
the church.  AFter talking for a little while she said, "you just
called me a few days ago and I said I wasnt interested."  the elders
contacted her and passed her to us about a month ago and after
vacances (a few days ago) I had called her again (she hadnt been
available all during the holidays) and she said she had changed her
mind and wasnt interested.  We asked her if she was interested in
fixing a lesson and she said, she would because it is bizarre in the
last few weeks she keeps meeting missionaries.  We taught her  this
morning and the spirit was so strong.  She is a french woman with a
little boy and said she has so much anger because of things people
have done to her and has a hard time also understanding why Christ
would have to suffer for us, and why there couldnt have been a miracle
by God so He didnt have to suffer for us.  We were able to testify of
the Atonement and the why of the ATonement, it was amazing.  We are
praying for her, she said she may come to church on Sunday.

ONe of the recent converts Emmanuelle told us her new years resolution
is to do a lot more with the missionaries (she's a convert of like
three months and was baptized after one week of missionary lessons).
She she came with us Saturday.  Our RDVs all got frugged (aka they
arent there when you go to teach them) she we ended up doing lots of
porting and street contacting.  But, we actually got let in by a
Vietnamese girl and it was so cool to see Emanuelle testify of the
truthfulness of the gospel, etc.  Awesome.

On the train we contacted this Chinese girl and she ended up coming to
church on Sunday with her Chinese friend.  English and French are both
a little sketchy but they were there and they felt good at church and
we got them chinese books of mormon, so it's all up from there!

Soeur Searle is amazing.  I am so blessed to have her and she is
helping me so much.  That girl is wise.  And tell her parents that her
french is awesome!!  She's just an overall incredible missionary.

I think more than anything this week my testimony of the Atonement has
grown.  God gives us challenges and experiences so that we can learn
and progress and continue to grow.  We can always decide how we react
and what we take from a challenge, but the goal is always to help us
continue to progress.  That's what makes the gospel so amazing.
Through Christ, all things are truly possible.

I love you all!  Be safe and eat bratwurst and schnitzel to start
Danielle on her german 50 pounder. :)

Soeur Chard