gotta love the information age... My family found out about my week before I got to write my email about it! So funny. Anyway. yes, we had a major plumbing problem in our apartment this week.... I'll spare you the (disgusting) details. Let's just say we were without a toilet and a shower. We talked to President and he told us to pack our bags and head over to the Ferreiras, a couple in our Branch. They are the BEST. He is Portuguese, and she's half Portuguese, half French. He's paralyzed from the waist down, so he cruises around the house in a wheelchair. She is literally like four feet tall- just barely taller than him while seated in his chair. Thus, their house is miniature. Soeur Larsen and I are not at all what you would call tall, but we literally had to bend down to reach the handle to the front gate! We felt like we were in a little hobbit house. We stayed there for three nights, until finally a scary-looking plumber with a glass eye came and shot a power hose into our toilet. He came out and told us, with a satisfied smile on his face, that it was fixed. He left, and we went into the bathroom to check it out. He had left something black all over the toilet (enter: large quantities of bleach) but other than that, it worked! So there is the story of the homeless sister missionaries.
the work in Blois is going really well. Maria is getting closer and closer to fixing a baptismal date! we're so excited. I have never seen an investigator with so many experiences with prayer. She is amazing. Her faith is so simple and strong and childlike. Last week, her boyfriend/father of her children (we're working on getting them married) left for like three days and she had no idea where he went. She doesn't have a cell phone, so she couldn't call him. She was all alone at their apartment with their two little kids and did not know what to do. She went to her window and prayed that Heavenly Father would send her Carole, a member in the branch who is friends with Maria. Minutes later, Carole and her husband showed up, having no idea of Maria's plight. Carole's husband sent out a mass text to us and the branch council asking us to pray for Maria. 10 minutes after that text was sent out, the boyfriend came home.
Fastforward a few days. Maria was outside, on her way to go grocery shopping. She had her little baby in a snuggly and her toddler in a stroller. The elevator at their apartment building was broken, so she had to go down six flights of stairs carrying her two children and the stroller. She didn't know how she was going to get her two kids and the groceries back up the six flights of stairs, so she prayed as she walked that she would run into the missionaries. She looked up and saw Soeur Larsen and I in the distance. She called after us. Within minutes, we had a member there to drive her back and help her back up the stairs to her apartment. I love how prayer works! Another cool sidenote: Soeur Larsen and I were walking to district meeting. We had let the Elders go ahead to the church because we had to run to the store. We left the store and that's when Maria called after us. If it had been any other day, we wouldn't have been there. If we hadn't gone to the store, we wouldn't have been there. Miracle.
We had a rendez-vous with Maria on Saturday. We brought the Book of Mormon edition of the Liahona to show her. I had the idea to read one of the little stories in the back, so I flipped to one and we read it outloud together. I had just glanced at it, but it turned out to be the perfect story for her! It talked about a young mother, which, she said, spoke to her. After the story, she told us she had been hearing the word "baptism" everywhere the previous week. The story had mentioned it at the end. She's not ready to set a date yet, but she has been thinking about it! We are so excited for her. She is so sweet. We just need to get them married, then they'll be ready to get in the water!
Big things are happening in Blois. Soeur Larsen and I are in awe of all the tender mercies and miracles we have witnessed. As it says in the Book of Mormon,
"O how great the goodness of our God."
love from the loire.