Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Week 23 in Albi!

Bonjour à tous! C'est incroyable qu'une autre semaine soit déjà passée! I say it every week but really, the weeks just run together!

So! Brigitte got back from Marseille at the end of this last week but we still don't have our stinking car. I honestly don't know what we would have done if we actually had a job where we could get fired because honestly no one cares if you don't have a car to go places here. One thing I don't really appreciate about European culture is the total lack of customer service. If it is broken it is your fault and your problem. Oh well... I'm just bitter about not being able to see amis we would have been able to see. But! I digress, Brigitte is doing well. She is excited to come to church this next week. It has been a while.

Zone p-day Volleyball

 We had two lessons with Elisabeth this week and she was progressing really well. She is still praying about her baptismal date. It's funny mom that your brought up the elders teaching Marisa and how they extended the invitation really quick and how we were kind of upset and in disbelieve that they would do that so early... But as missionaries we are supposed to invite people to baptism no later than the second lesson. Elder Kearon of the seventy came to our mission and told us we should be inviting people to baptism as often as we are inviting people to pray. Hahaha. Pretty crazy. But that is what holy boldness is all about. :)

Anyway, Elisabeth was supposed to come to church this week but she called the members that were going to bring her an hour before saying she wasn't feeling well. We sent her a text asking how she was and she said that she was tired and needed to rest and take a break from lessons and that she is going to re contact us :( But it doesn't make any sense that she would say that! We really think she is having family opposition to her taking the lessons. She said she feels really good when she is at church and with us and she said that every time we leave her house she waits with anticipation for our next visit. I just hope it works out. Pray that our suspicions aren't true. I would say through out my mission the number one reason people drop us is because of family. We will see. I just need to have faith things are going to work out.

Still looking for new amis! The weather is cooling off and I think people are starting to be nice again. Haha. 

Paris Temple
When the mission shifted its focus to temples and the ordinances we do inside of the temple, it was kind of weird at first that in contacts we are talking about baptisms for the dead and eternal marriage. But it works really well! We have been showing people pictures of the temples in contacts and then talking about how we do ordinances by proxy for our ancestors and others and it works so well! People are captivated by the temple and when we tell them there is going to be one in Paris they get really excited. We are really tapping into one of the big "F's" of the French culture... (FAMILY, friends, and food... Unfortunately it isn't always in that order but that is besides the point). It's cool to see that our mission president truly is inspired.

I did an exchange with elder Hansen this week, on Monday actually. After we did p-day in Toulouse elder Hansen and I caught a train to Carmaux to visit the famille Allal. I really like them. They are such a fun family. One thing that I have really appreciated in staying in a ville for so long is all of the friendships I have made with members
and Amis. The Allals are really fun because they love to joke. They have this never-ending game called "blague pourrie" which means rotten joke. Basically whoever says the dumbest joke wins but you never really officially start or end the game. No one can officially win but periodically you can take the lead. I think we as missionaries are pretty good at it because our jokes in French are pretty basic. And almost all jokes in French are play on words so if we can come up with a joke. It's always really dumb.

Zone P-Day Volleyball

Anyways! We had a good rendezvous with them and then rode home with Frere Allal. Elder Hansen is a really good missionary. He was in the same district as me when I was in Marseille. I love that despite how big the mission is, you still get to see people again.

The next day we taught Elisabeth, contacted and we were suppose to have another rendezvous but it fell through and we had brought the Famille Billet with us. So we ended up doing a spiritual thought with them before barely catching our train back to Toulouse to end the exchange. We ended up staying with the zone leaders again because we missed our return train. Oh well. I fight the little "if we only had the car voice…" Pretty often but now I'm like a billion times more thankful for it.

Saturday we went over to Eda's house for the first time since she got back from her emergency trip to Maurice. She fed us so stinking much. She makes food for like ten people and only invites four. Eda cracks me up but sometimes she stresses me out too. Sometimes she asks questions or pretends to be for something that isn't compatible with the gospel just to "test us" as missionaries. She is a stinker.

We are slowly reteaching her all of the lessons and slowly correcting some of her odd theological ideas. I mean she has been catholic for like her entire life in France so I understand why some of her ideas are mixed up with half-truths, but we are just super bold with her because she knows that we love her and only tell her the things we do because we care.

After stuffing our faces with Eda we were invited to Mimi's to eat. We cooked with her and it was really fun. She told us how to do everything and we did it. We made this really good pasta sauce with sundried tomatoes and pickles... Sounds odd but it was good.

We felt like giant fatty pants afterwards though because of the back to back meals. We were joking how it was probably better that we didn't serve in Utah because our bodies simply would not have handled all of the meals. Hahaha.

We drove our car this week... and it was super sketchy! But we had to. Eda sent a friend to look at it. He replaced the battery and then we drove it about 30km to his house. Hahaha. We were praying the entire time that it wouldn't explode. The power steering went out several times but then it would come on right before we needed to make a scary turn. Haha. It was an adventure.

One other thing! Today I got a call from Elder Schneider! Which is totally against the rules but it was him that called me so I talked to him. Hahaha. The phone call was super funny because I didn't know who it was at first. I answered and we made small talk and then he asked... Elder Johnson de l'Arkansas.. Il est là? And I said oui and then asked who it was because the entire time I was trying to match the voice to the person because I recognized his voice but just couldn't put my finger on it.

He is doing really well. It was so great to hear from my trainer. He was amazed at how much better my French was. Hahahah. I would hope it has gotten better considering he had me for my first three months. He said that he thought it was another person on the phone :) I'm going to have to visit him. He is so awesome. It pretty much made my day. It made me realize how fast time goes by! We served together forever ago!

Anyway! I love you all! That was it for this week!
Que Dieu soit à vos côtés.
Elder Johnson

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