Monday, September 12, 2011

a moroni man.

well, it is officially september. leaves are changing, that lovely fall crisp is in the air, and, best of all: the tourists are leaving! we are in heaven. today we went to Napoleon's tomb and the army museum and we had the place to ourselves! the museum was SO cool. Soeur Smith and I are both history buffs, so we bounced around the place oohing and aahing over the helmet collections, the war propaganda posters, and the video archives of the french army marching through the Arc de Triomphe and down the Champs Elys√©es after the end of the war. Bliss! We are so well matched, she and I.

this week was a good week. we met with Lou, our 11 year-old ami, on wednesday. she is so cute and super smart. She lives with her grandma, who is a member of our ward. She wants to be baptized, but her dad, who is an atheist, won't let her. Grr! We keep teaching her and hoping for a miracle. This week we introduced personal progress to her. She's all over it!
After Lou, we had our last rendez-vous with Hana. She left for Taiwan the next day. It was so sad. We read Moroni 8:26 with her:

"And the remission of sins bringeth meekness, and lowliness of heart; and because of meekness and lowliness of heart cometh the visitation of the Holy Ghost, which Comforter filleth with hope and perfect love, which love endureth by diligence unto prayer, until the end shall come, when all the saints shall dwell with God."

She read it outloud in Chinese. As she read, a big smile spread across her face. She said, "before coming here, when I was at the supermarket, I have question in my head- 'How I always keep Holy Ghost with me?' then I come here and you show me this scripture and I get my answer. How did you know??" It was so, as Soeur Smith would say, tender. I love that she always finds her answers in the Book of Mormon. We also helped her find the kind of man she wants to marry. :) The three of us made a pact to marry a "Moroni man" in the temple one day. She's so cute. She loved these verses about Captain Moroni:

"And Moroni was a strong and a mighty man; he was a man of a perfect understanding; yea, a man that did not delight in bloodshed; a man whose soul did joy in the liberty and the freedom of his country, and his brethren from bondage and slavery.
Yea, a man whose heart did swell with thanksgiving to his God, for the many privileges and blessings which he bestowed upon his people; a man who did labor exceedingly for the welfare and safety of his people.
Yea, and he was a man who was firm in the faith of Christ, and he had sworn with an oath to defend his people, his rights, and his country, and his religion, even to the loss of his blood.
Yea, verily, verily I say unto you, if all men had been, and were, and ever would be, like unto Moroni, behold, the very powers of hell would have been shaken forever; yea, the devil would never have power over the hearts of the children of men."

We cried, we hugged, we prayed. We love her so. Teaching her has been life-changing, even though it was only for a week and a half. That is how amazing she is! I miss her already.

"I wish we can lock our hearts together."

On Friday we did some district contacting with Elders Gubbay, Tauhiro, Walker, and Dick. We didn't find any "golden" contacts, but it was fun anyway. We contacted a chinese college student who told us to go give the Book of Mormon to someone who really needed it... great. Then we saw a cute little old man shuffling along the sidewalk, so we started talking to him. Turns out he didn't speak English or French... he was Colombian. I somehow motioned and smiled enough to get him to follow us-- I felt like such a creeper! Props to him for not running away. We brought him to Elder Gubbay, who is fluent in Spanish. The man turned out to not be interested, but it was a good try!

This week Soeur Smith and I have been studying a lot about Joseph Smith for an upcoming activity in our ward. It has been a really neat experience. On Saturday, we had a rendez-vous with a less-active, Christine. It has been really hard to get through to her... She doesn't remember anything we teach her! We end up teaching her the same lessons over and over. She keeps asking why our church is different from other churches and why our church is the only true church. Just talking and reading out of the scriptures wasn't seeming to help her, so on saturday, we watched "Joseph Smith: the Prophet of the Restoration" with her. As I watched, the reality of the Restoration just washed over me. Joseph Smith's story felt so real. I know it happened. Afterwards, Soeur Smith and I gushed about how cool it was to watch that film after having studied Joseph Smith all week. And the best part: Christine loved it. She said the film was very touching and it helped her understand so much. We were so happy we finally got through to her!

autumn is in the air, the work is good, and i am happy. 

avec tout mon amour,
little mish. 

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