Monday, January 26, 2015

The miracles of the forgotten phone

The week went rather well again.  We actually didn't get many lessons, but we had a lot of member work and we are seeing things moving forward rather quickly.  Monday night we went out to try and see Fr. Didier, a less active who is nearly impossible to get a hold of.  Apparently he's been having a lot of personal struggles and decided to send us a text asking us if we could pass by.  Sadly, Elder S-J and I forgot the phone in the car as we went out working, so we didn't get it, but the second he sent it was the second that we knocked on his door!  He came outside and asked us if we had gotten his message and we just said, "Haha... we forgot our phone in the car... why?"  We talked with him and gave him a blessing because he was sick and he has asked us to send him a scripture passage every day to help him come back to church.  I was so amazed.  The Lord is very good at doing his work.  He came to church yesterday which made a fifth Melchizedek priesthood holder at the Basse-Terre group.

After church we went home teaching with Fr. Duflo who has just gotten back to full activity.  We saw Fr. Didier and he testified with all his heart that it is worth it to go through the repentance process.  I was so filled with love for these people I almost started crying.  We are seeing miracles down here and I will be eternally grateful to the Lord for letting me be a part of it.  I love these people so much!  Basse- Terre is most definitely one of the places I want to come back to after the mission.

Another miracle is that Sr. Samuel has been coming back to church as well.  I didn't even do anything there. I haven't even been able to see her outside of church, but Fr. Duflo saw her in the city one day and asked if he could pick her up for church.  Its now been 2 weeks in a row that she has come and is planning on teaching the Sunday school lesson the next week we are in Basse-Terre!

We also did quite a bit of service this week.  Friday night we stopped by the Nerellep family to see how they were doing.  Oddly enough, again we forgot the phone, and again we showed up right as they called our phone.  They wanted us to help them some more with the renovation of their house.  So we helped them move some furniture.  Then the next morning the Branch priesthood men met at David and Cindy's to help them cut down some trees and fix up their garden.  It was super fun.  Mindya, their 4 year old daughter and I picked up the cut branches. haha  She's so funny!  She started ordering me around telling me which branches to pick up, "THE BIGGEST ONE!" haha We are basically best friends now.

Well I hope you liked this one I had a lot to say this time around!

I hope everyone is safe and sound.

avec amour,
Elder Call

Fr. Pommier, Sr. Pommier, Christopher, Christiano, and little Clavia 

Elder S-J got a allergic reaction to David's cat.  David then attacked him with the eye drops, but not before I could snap a photo!

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Quote from Pres. Mehr


Well, well well!  I didn't expect to get a letter from the world famous "Big Momma" this week! haha!  Big Momma is apparently Nate's backyard sports name   Thank you very much Dad!  haha  I loved the letter!  I couldn't help laughing as I was reading and everybody in the library was giving me weird looks.

This week went by really well, we had a family home evening with the Pommiers, she loved the letter that Mom sent!  She wants to send mom a letter.  I love that family so much, I feel so happy every time that I am over there.  At church yesterday we had a group meal afterwords and everybody had a great time.  I really, really love these people I just cant explain it...  Fr. Abenzoar has been helping us a bunch with the missionary work.  He introduced us to all his family and we are going to start teaching his sisters soon.  Fr. Potan got his calling as 1st counselour in the Elders quorum.  Things are going good.  David and Cindy's baptismal date was changed to the 14 February so that we have time to get all the lessons in before the baptismal interview. David is crazy for cookies now, we also went runnning with him in the morning.

Here are some answers to your questions:

There are only 2 AP's in Trinidad, none are French side AP's, ever.  They stay one transfer in their actual area and then the next one is spent flying around the mission for zone conferences.  There are 4 French zones Grand-Terre, Basse-Terre, Martinique, and Guyane Française.

I have had one baptismal interview.  I was super nervous but she did very well, she had studied the entire week to get ready for the interview. Now she is baptised and is doing very well.

President Mehr sent us a quote from Neal A. Maxwell this week that I really enjoyed.

"One reason to 'search the scriptures' is to discover these sudden luxuriant meadows of meaning, these green pastures to nourish us in our individual times of need. The Book of Mormon surely has its share and more of these...

"For my part, I am glad the book will be with us 'as long as the earth shall stand.' I need and want additional time. For me, towers, courtyards, and wings await inspection. My tour of it has never been completed. Some rooms I have yet to enter, and there are more flaming fireplaces waiting to warm me. Even the rooms I have glimpsed contain further furnishings and rich detail yet to be savored. There are panels inlaid with incredible insights and design and décor dating from Eden. There are also sumptuous banquet tables painstakingly prepared by predecessors which await all of us. Yet, we as Church members sometimes behave like hurried tourists, scarcely venturing beyond the entry hall to the mansion.

"May we come to feel as a whole people beckoned beyond the entry hall. May we go inside far enough to hear clearly the whispered truths from those who have 'slumbered,' which whisperings will awaken in us individually the life a   discipleship as never before." ("The Book of Mormon: A Great Answer to 'The Great Question', pp. 13-16)

We just barely started over our reading for the Book of Mormon.  I finished my Book in which I was marking everything about Jesus Christ (it was full and was also the reason why I need a purple marker, because Christ's words were purple, and there are a lot) This round through the Book of Mormon I will be searching for the steps of repentance. Something I have noticed already is why Laman and Lemuel never really changed.  Sure they felt sorry for what they did, they even "humbled themselves before the Lord" and confessed that what they did was wrong, but they never committed themselves to change. Repentance is not a punishment, nor is it just feeling bad for having done something. It is truly a change.  Laman and Lemuel felt bad and were punished plenty of times and yet did not repent fully because they did not change.

I love you all!
Have a great week!
avec amour,
Elder Call

Monday, January 12, 2015

Happy Jump Day!

Bonjour Ma famille!

Well you're right, I did have my "Jump Day" on Saturday.  18 months as a missionary!   And yes its true, the transfer is over this week, one down with Elder S-J.  Its been going by super quick... I guess.  Its all seems the same to me now.  We'll be staying the same, no surprises.  Sr. Vance will be going down to Guyane Française and Sr. Bailey will be replacing her.  Elder Peterson our zone leader is going to Martinique to be with Elder Lewis and Elder Telga the assistant is going to be our zone leader now (he's the missionary from Martinique) Its going to be super fun with him here!  He's only got 2 transfers left and he'll be going home, and then the Martinique branch will explode!

The terrorist attacks were a big deal here, just as I assume they were everywhere.  If people talk about anything it would be that, or carnival which is going on right now as you know... which reminds me.  Last night as we were driving through the city, everything was quiet and calm, when out of nowhere comes a parade of  kids playing drums and cracking whips. They turned the corner right in front of us.  We waited at the stop sign for maybe 2 minutes as they passed and then carried on our way.  Just another day on Guadeloupe!

We had some fun on Saturday when Fr. Abenzoar asked us to come clean up the church property. We were there for a good 2 and a half hour hacking at vines and trees with machetes, it was super fun, but I got some pretty gnarly blisters which made it hard to shake hands at church on Sunday. haha!

Friday night we got to do something really different.  David was invited to sing in a production for disabled kids about non-violence.  We got permission to go listen to his song and support him.  It was pretty cool. We need to get some lessons in with him though because we are a little behind if we want to make it to his baptismal date for the 24th.

I do know Elder Creech, he was the assistant while I was in Guyane and for the fist part in Martinique. That's interesting that dad's nurse knew him and he remembered me.  Say hello from me.  I only saw him three times or so, but he did cross the river to Suriname with me in the same canoe, which is definitely not something you just forget right?

I also finished translating the letter for Sr. Pommier, more like a novel really, but she loved it!  She wants to write you back so there might be something coming!

Well, I love all of you very much!  Thank you for your prayers!

avec amour,
Elder Call

Me and my machete.  "Cutting the grass" at the church's property

It was some serious hard work!

David's concert

Monday, January 5, 2015

Another great week!

Bonjour President

So we had another great week this week!  Once again the Pommier family the Duflo family and David came to church, that makes three weeks in a row!  David and Cindy are progressing very nicely.  They are very humble and open. They come to church and participate and the members have brought them in so lovingly, its incredible!  They continue to be very involved in the lessons and are keeping engagements very well. Cindy wasn't able to come to church because sick with  her pregnancy, she is going to get tests done today and they are going to be finding out if there are maybe twins.  I love this family a bunch!  We are going over tonight and I am going to teach them how to make cookies for family home evening.

It's been really funny being with Elder Stewart-Johnson!  He's such a great guy!  He hasn't quite adjusted to the missionary eating schedule yet (which isn't very scheduled, its more of, we'll eat if we find time)  I have gotten so habituated to it that it doesn't bother me if a meal goes missed because something unplanned comes up, but he gets very worried if we miss a meal haha!  This morning we had to get up early because we were hiking to the first Chute du Carbet.  Naturally I chose sleep over breakfast, but as the alarm went off he was up and cooking, so as soon as I finished saying my morning prayer he was shoving food in my face.  I just looked at him all, "Elder, its 4:30 in the morning, I don't know what you want me to do with this..."  I still just can't eat that much in the morning, my stomach just can't take it.  But he chowed down.

Well... I'm not really sure what else to say... hope you all have a great year, I'll be seeing you soon! Crazy! I've got 5 days until I've reached my sister missionary mark... getting close!

Soyez prudent!

avec amour,
Elder Call

Merry Christmas!

The sunsets are beautiful here!

Eklder Okano and I on bikes

It's been raining a lot lately

Hike this morning.  With Elder Johnson

Can you see me?

Me and my distant cousin Elder Glover!  Together again!

Elder Stewart-Johnson and I got really distracted during planning one night, that's a pizza box

Friday, January 2, 2015

Joyeux Noël et Bonne Nouvelle Yeat!


J'espère que vous avez passé une joyeuse noël! C'était bien pour moi!

This week was really great!  For Christmas day we didn't really have a lot of stuff that happened festive. Most of our time during the week was spent walking everywhere and giving people cookies that we made and caroled just the two of us, we made a ton of cookies!  Saturday was one of the greatest days ever. Elder Stewart-Johnson and I started a fast before we headed out that afternoon and right afterwords Fr. Abenzoar called us up to help him clean the group building.  When we got there he was going crazy zealous for missionary work!  He was asking when he could come with us to see all his friends, he finished painting his house and is ready to start inviting everybody over to learn about the gospel and even called up a few of his friends on the spot to talk to us.  Right after we stopped by, a lady that I had contacted with Elder Drennan came over. Her kids were sick and it seemed like they hadn't had such a Merry Christmas.  So Elder S-J and I sprinted home to make them a big ol' batch of cookies, I even cut them into gingerbread men and Christmas tree shapes. We gathered plates of cookies and sang silent night for them.  It was very moving even if we weren't the greatest singers.  Then as we were walking Fr. Abenzoar showed up to take us around. I realized that we were close to where Davis and Cindy lived so I asked if we could stop by and say hello.  We were there for a good little while and had an incredible discussion with them.  They were telling us how they wanted to be a part of a church but never felt right anywhere, but it felt good at our church.  They have one of the happiest families ever, its incredible!  Their 5 year old daughter Mindiya is so cute haha! Every couple of minutes she would run up to her mom and ask her to kiss her boo-boos haha.  I testified about temples and how the family can be together forever.  The spirit was incredibly strong!

Better yet was the next day, Sr. Duflo was at church, the Pommier family, and David and Cindy.  It was a miracle. Sr. Duflo and Sr. Pommier testified a lot about the church during Sunday School and I had a hard time keeping from crying and just prayed that David and Cindy could feel the spirit too.  David even asked me if he could choose who would baptize him during church. I can not deny that the Lord is preparing people, he sure has prepared this family, it amazes me every time I think about it.

During my personal study I had a thought about Christ. Christ had a perfect knowledge of everything, everything was before Him.  Past, present, future.  Imagine how successful He must have felt as he was going about His life!  With every action, every step, every word, every miracle, He saw perfectly the impact of what He was doing.  For example, as he opened the eyes of a blind man, surely he knew the significance it had for the blind man as well as his family and friends.  Yet, He also knew perfectly that one day some guy on an island in the Caribbean would read the account of what He was doing and be comforted, someone He knew by name and loved profoundly, not to mention every other person that ever read that account.  If only we could see the eternal perspective of what we were doing right now, how much more hopeful and grateful we would be.

I love all of you so very much!
avec amour,
Elder Call

Christmas dinner with the missionaries

My two former companions, Elder Johnson and Elder Glover

Using my new apron and making cookies

Our Christmas Bûche that we bought (Yule log)