Monday, June 30, 2014

Soeur Finneran had a conversation with a member that went a little bit like this.....
Member: 'My son just returned from his mission in Africa, and I can tell you that is was awful. Living conditions were awful, he got diseases, his housing was awful. But spiritually and emotionally he was VERY blessed. You missionaries in the Paris mission, physically you are spoiled. But emotionally, spiritually, nothing'.
I'm here to testify that that isn't true!! We just got done with the office elders looking at our apartement, and they say its the worst on the mission, in 1 month we are getting a new apartement. So there goes the physically spoiled. haha I've got nothing!
Just kidding, i've got something better than a nice apartement. This week we had to say our goodbyes to the family Swanepoel. They are moving to La Rochelle, where they will be baptized in a few weeks. Even though I wont be able to see their baptism i'm so happy I got to be a part of it. As we were having our last lesson with them they asked us to share our best moments from our missions, and after we did that we asked them what was there best moment here in St. Nazaire.
Georgette replied 'Finding out about eternel families. In our Christian church we have learned all the other stuff, the life of Jesus, ect. But never did they teach us that there was something after this life, that our family could be together forever'.
If the only good thing that came from my mission is giving them the hope of getting sealed together, even if I wont see it, my mission will never ever be a waste. I'm so grateful that that hope, and that message is what I get to bring to people.
So that was definately the highlight of my week. :) Short but sweet, I hope you all have a wonderful week! Love you! 

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

                                          Me and Soeur Finneran in Paris
                                          watching boat races
                                          District Meeting
Bonjour tout le monde from sunny side up beautiful saint nazaire!! things are popping like apricot trees up in here and we are melting like popsicles on a scorching hot black top!!! I guess when the Lord asked us to hasten his work, he also asked the weather to turn up the heat to help us out! ;)  haha ok for reals was a good week! (yes, this was from Soeur Finneran, she thinks she's gangster).
   On monday and tuesday we had the lovely privelege to go to Paris to pick up Soeur Finnerans legality card. Since we were there for our P-day we got to explore some of the beautiful historical sites, such as: The Eiffel Tower, Sacre Coeur, Chipotle, and the well known Paris metros. But most importantly I got to sleepover with Soeur Sorenson! It was so great to catch up, 4 weeks without seeing each other was way too long. We had a wonderful little trip. We also got to do exchanges with our lovely STL's this week, and after go to the farewell conference of President and Sister Poznanski. Tears might have flowed (from Soeur Finneran)...but the spirit was present, especially with the last remarks from Soeur Poznanski. We were uplifted and reassured of the eternal nature of the relationships we develop here on the mission. I really will miss the Poznanskis after all the things they have done for me. I think it would be impossible to name all the times they have helped me on the mission and all the good that they have done for me. But I am excited to have the Babins come in, and see what they do with the mission.
   The last story I will share with you today is that of the family home evening that we had with the Hemon family and our friends Ludovic and Ambre. We went to the Hemon's and they are a lovely family! Normally we go into FHEs with the mindset that we will do the spiritual though and they will provide some food. But the Hemons were so prepared, it was adorable. They have assigned children to do spiritual thoughts, prayer, make a dessert, and a game. Many stories were shared on personal conversion and thoughts on prayer. Ludovic even shared a personal testimony on prayer and it was powerful! Ambre was touched and even expressed that she has "a thirst" to know more! It was a testimony to us that family nights are so powerful and help our friends develop good relationships with the members. It is a good model for us all, they really were awesome, and everyone had so much fun!
   Thank you for all your prayers and kindness! I love you all! Have an awesome week!!!

Soeur Sarah Jackson!!!

Monday, June 16, 2014

Hey everybody were in Paris this week! Get to do some legality for Soeur Finneran, so this email will be short because I want to go do some fun things this pday in Paris!! 
Also just to start off the email with some wonderful news!! A bunch of people filed multiple law suits to stop the progression of the temple, so it hasn't really gone anywhere. But! Last week the French courts passed everything! They were all shut down, and officially the construction of the temple can start. Elder Andersen was here for it, in 2 years France will have its temple!! Were pretty happy about that.
Another cool thing that happened this week was a rendez-vous that we had with the non pratiquant, Ludivic, the cool guy who contacted us in the street and his girlfriend. We got there before his girlfriend and so we were sitting in the hallway waiting for her and we hear the gentle sounds of Mormon Tabernacle Choirs 'god be with you till we meet again'. We just started laughing. So apparently Ludivic had done a mini-mission. He really is an awesome guy, but because of his dad he fell away. Darn those parents.
But we were teaching his girlfriend, Ambre, and asked her about her beliefs and she was all 'I believe in God, but how do you know which church is the true one?' :) So we told her about the young man who had the same question. And then Ludivic bore a really good testimony. He may be inactive, but he has a testimony. It was really a special moment. They'll be sealed in the temple in 2 years. ;)
Sorry that's all the time I have. But have a great day!!! Love you all!!!!
June 9

This was a week full of strange and miraculous miracles. So basically me and Finneran were basking joy, plus it got warm, so we got to buy ice cream on top of it all.
So we were walking down the street and this tinted window black car pulled over, and this tattooed black kid got out, a bunch of black gangsters in the car, and he came running up to us. First reaction was of course 'i'm getting taken'. But then he was like 'your the sister missionaries?! I've been looking for the Church here, i'm a member but have been inactive for a long time'. You could tell that by the looks of him. So we chatted for a second and then gave him the address of the Church and our phone number, praying that he wasn't going to bomb the chapel later that night.
And then a few days later we got a call from him. He asked us if we have Finding Faith in Christ DVDs, and we said yes and asked why. Apparently he has a girlfriend that he told he was a member of the Church to and that he want to go back, and she wants to take the missionary lessons and learn more! So we fixed a dinner appointment with them and he was like 'i remember the missionaries made really good cookies, feel free to bring some!' It was so awesome! Only on the mission can a creepy, crazy experience turn into a miracle.
Then another miracle we had this last week was while we were out contacting and we passed this lady and introduced ourselves, and right away she said 'oh your the Church with Joseph Smith'. Now I need to make it clear that no one in France knows Joseph Smith, they know the mormons and polygamy, but not Joseph Smith. So we were really caught off guard and asked how she knew Joseph Smith. So apparently she had seen the Book of Mormon in the store and wanted to read it. So she bought a Book of Mormon, and read it, and then in the inside was a little pamphlet about Joseph Smith, and she read that too. It was the craziest, coolest thing. So we were like 'we would love to explain the book and our beliefs better to you'. And she was all 'I dont have time right now! But come back Friday and we can! Around 4'. It was the coolest thing you guys. Huge miracles from the Lord. Its amazing the people he actually does prepare for us!
So I hope you all have a wonderful week! And see all the miracles that the Lord puts directly in our paths. Some pull over and stop us, others we have to put forth the effort to get them, but dont let one pass you by!!! Love you all!!!
June 2

Hey everybody! So yes, my new companion is a Davis Dart, and yes, we graduated together, and yes, we know all the same people. Basically I don't think i've talked so much my whole mission. We're having a lot of fun here in good old St. Nazaire. But Soeur Finneran has had a way different mission than me, a much harder one in some ways. She hasn't seen a lot of success as a missionary. She hasn't had a baptism yet, and she almost never gets let in porting. Its actually quite sad. So she came here and we have amis that are progressing, some going to get baptized and she was SO surprised. So this will hopefully be a good transfer for her. But she's a stronger missionary because of it.

Anywho, this was a good week. On Tuesday night, my last night with Soeur Sorenson, we went and had a lesson with the Swanepoels and brought up baptism again. And Soeur Sorenson invited them to be baptized and right away Bookie was like 'oh yeah, I would love to be!' It was awesome, without hesitation!! Georgette said she's already been baptized, so she needs to pray about it, but she's ready to pay tithing to our church so i'm not that worried. And Bokkie was all 'could it be in 3 weeks?' And I was like 'anything is possible with God'. So we are pretty happy about that, trying to get ready. They are moving in a few weeks so they actually might be getting baptized in another area in France, but I really don't care, i'm just so happy for them. Although I don't imagine that the church has a baptismal outfit in Bookies size.....

And we had a lesson with Marion, she's 24 and French, really cool. And she striaght up said she was atheist, and we were like 'why are we here then?' So we taught her a bit, and she is secretly believing (like all French people. And we brought out the Book of Mormon, and she was like 'yeah I cant really make a decision until I read the book!' So she's reading. It was really great.

On another side note, we had a member who lost her baby this last week, and she bore her testimony on Sunday, it was the most powerful thing i've ever heard. It was so sad, probably the most powerful testimony meeting i've been to. Members, they amaze me.

I hope you all have a great week! Love you all!