Clément got baptized!
and it was so perfect. the week proceeding the baptism, soeur larsen and i would just randomly look at each other and start giggling. who would have thought that she and i would be having a baptism together in the field? it was surreal.
since there isn't a baptismal font in Blois, the baptism was held saturday evening in Orléans. the ENTIRE branch of Blois showed up for the event (all 50 of us!), plus Clément's in-laws and friends. it was a full house! everyone was chatting and laughing and bise-ing. (seriously, LOTS of kissing goes down at a french baptism!) He was so calm and happy, despite the fact that the heating was not working at all in the building and the water in the font was cold. It was so much fun to see him in white, then in a suit and tie. he just looked so mormon. it was the BEST.
The Branch President gave a talk after the ordinance, welcoming Clément as a member of the church. He said everyone in the world is like a little fish, swimming along the current. But we, as members of the church, have to dare to be different and swim against the current. Clément joked afterwards that he was a little frozen fish :)
Afterwards, we all ate Galette des Rois, a french new year's tradition. it's kind of like a tart with a little toy hidden inside. the person who gets the toy in their piece gets to wear a paper crown. it was a party.
yesterday, Clément got up in sacrament meeting and bore his testimony. It was so sweet and humble. Soeur Larsen and I felt like glowing parents. He also said the closing prayer.... the branch is REALLY excited he's finally a member! He was so ready. He's getting the Aaronic Priesthood next week, and then he'll be off!
we went and had lunch with Odile, a member in our branch, this week. She's a tiny little frenchwoman and we just adore her. She 's so eccentric and so herself... for example, if she wears a purple dress, she wears purple lipstick and carries a purple purse too. she loves to laugh and to talk about beautiful things and deep things too. we had a delicious little french lunch and talked. She told us about how much she loves David Bowie and Captain Moroni, and all the gospel ties she found in the Lord of the Rings. We love to partake of her wisdom. :)
we have another member in our ward who is a pâtissier. (he is also the fiancé of one of our amis) so this week, we went over to their apartment and he taught us how to make macarons while we taught his fiancée the gospel. it was a pretty good system, if you ask me! it was fun to learn how to make something french... now i can make something a little more impressive than crêpes and quiche!
i had a little personal triumph this week: i finished the Book of Mormon in French! i was proud of myself. i even read the Isaiah chapters. It was a really cool experience to read the Book of Mormon in my mission language... something i'll never forget!
love from the loire.