Monday, December 28, 2009

Christmas in France

Jenni and Soeur Brunt visiting Soeur Nazeroff (she is 90). The Bishop and his wife and little girl also dropped by to see her.
The missionaries visiting with Sr. Garcia and her two granddaughters. She is an amazing woman.
The missionaries eating Christmas lunch - an all American PB & J sandwiches!
Soeur Brunt and Soeur Lake - great companions

December 28, 2009

During the week we had found some clothes that other missionaries had left in the apartment and put ribbons on them, then prepared some cookies to give out to people on the street. Then as we were walking we gave them our to homeless people. There was one guy that I was really touched. He was sitting on the side of the road begging for money. That day it was really cold. He had a skimpy jacket, a t-shirt, and a pair of jeans on. That day we actually didnt have anything but Sr. Brunt saw him as we passed took off her purple gloves and went and gave them to him. since that day I have thought about how Christ gave everything. She showed me such a great example that day. She was cold yet she didnt care he needed them more than she did. The real spirit of Christmas wasnt in those big fancy meals. They were in the little moments with Sr. Nazeoff, the homeless people, talking to you.
We had some really cool experiences this week. We were able to go to Toulouse for our Zone Conference. The morning was the usualy meetings and very spiritually up lifting in the after noon we had a talent show. Then we were able to go caroling. There were about 40 of us missionaries in a huge park. It was so much fun to sing for the people . i dont know if we really sounded good but really did make some noise. it was fun to watch the people that stopped and listened.
Yesterday we had the coolest thing happen. Sr. Brunt has a super bad cold and could barely talk yesterday but still wanted to work so we were doing some pass backs. We had planned to go and see this lady but when we got to the corner of the road we saw her husband and little girl coming out of the bread store. He doesnt really like us so we decided we would wait and go to see someone else. We had turned the corner and ran We contacted this lady. At first she said in english I dont speak French. We were like oh well that is ok we speak english. As we started to talk to her she. she saw our tags and was like "normally I wouldnt have stopped to talk to you if I would have seen you tags. and if you would have been two men I would have just ignored you, but I guess you talk about Jesus. What is it you do exactly?" We ended up talking to here for bout 20 minutes. Her name is Hieka. She has been here for 4 weeks. inthat for weeks she has been thinking a lot about Jesus Christ. She said that she was glad to have talked to us. She isnt too sure about what we said but she said she feels good about it. It was such a cool experience. And amazing to see how Heavenly Father helped us to find her. He knew we needed to turn and go down the other road and not follow what we had planned.
I am so grateful for the Holy Ghost who helps us along the way that even with little things he helps.

Monday, December 21, 2009

December 21, 2009 - Merry Christmas!

A man that we contacted during the week we gave the Restoration lesson on the street. He was a little skeptic; but in the end he wanted to know more and said that he would come to church yesterday. And he did. It was the coolest thing. He didnt understand much of why but he said he was willing to keep his promise and he came. The funny thing was he and his girl friend came in in the middle of sacrament meeting and sat on the front row. There were a few members that went and talked to him after because they thought he was a member. He fit in with the members.
I am learning a lot about myself. And Heavenly Father is really humbling me and helping realize that I need him more than i realize; So many times I think that i can do it myself i get too confident. I still have a long way to go but i am working on it; He helps me.
I dont know how much i have told you about the Oger family but I absolutelly love them. They take good care of us missionaries. and spoil us to be honest. They ahve a little girl that is severly handicapped. It is hard for them when it comes to coming to church because one of them has to stay with her at home so they take turns eah week coming. We were at their house on Friday and Brother Oger was talking to us about the plan Of Salvation. he said that in the beginning it was really hard that they cant go to the temple together, they cant come to church together, but then he said that They accepted it. That as much as it maybe a trail during this life they wont complain becasue they literally have and angel living with them. And Every day she is a reminder of their eternal goal. she cant talk to them in this life but after this life in the celestal kingdom she will be able to. But that means for them they have to live worthy to get there to talk to her. Their house is a house of the Lord the spirit is there. I feel different when i am there I feel like I am home.
It was a great testimony to me of the importance of doing our very best everyday and keeping and eternal perspective.
I Love you so much. I want you to know especailly with this week being Christmas that i know that Jesus Christ is my Savior. That in humblest of circumstances he started his life. I know that he died for us that his is the only way we can return to live with our Heavenly Father again.

Monday, December 14, 2009

December 14, 2009

Soeru Brunt is from West jordan. She is absolutely amazing. We said in the MTC that it would be so cool if one day we got to serve together but didnt really think that it would be possible since se got here about the same time. But you know what we were wrong. She is so strong. I cant tell you how good it is to be with an American. I will admit we have spoken a lot of English together but it has been so good. I dont know how to explain it but it is like we have been friends for a long time. And when you are friends with you companion and can talk about anything the work goes so much better. I can testify that this week I have seen the hand of the Lord helping us and leading us to people. I can honestly say that I love being a missionary. Not that i didnt like it before but really i love this work. We laugh together and work well together. It has been hard for me to contact people. Just to stop them on the streets and talk to them but with her we have fun with it. We have had all sorts of people this week. A guy that didnt want to talk to us and kind of screamed at us but we didnt understand anything he said as soon as we turned around we both started laughing. Then there was an afternoon this week that we were contacting and no one wanted to talk to us. We both said we are going to keep trying there will be someone that will listen to us and just then a man came into view and we started talking to him he was really nice and wanted to talk to us again. random side note we met a guy with a monkey yesterday. It was the funniest thing the money even shook our finger, then tried to bite Sr. Brunt's finger.
The work is moving forward we are finding new people all over the place. I am so thankful that Heavenly Father let me stay here. This a city of many miracles just waiting to happen. And with Christmas in the Air people seem to be more willing to talk to us or maybe it is just that I want to talk with them more. Which ever it is I like it.
It is kind of different to hear about all the different traditions here. We have many members that want us to celebrate with them. to be honest I was so confused at first because here you celebrate the 24th until midnight. From what i understand the 25 is just the relax and chill day; I am excited to see it in action.

Jenni with Brother and Sister Oger

Monday, December 7, 2009

And Soeur Lake gets to....?

I get to stay in Perpignan!!!!! I have literally been praying for a couple of weeks to stay. There is something inside me that I dont feel like i have accomplised what I need to here. I felt like I would change cities because I have been here for 3 transfers already. But i exercised faith and you could say I had a heart to heart with Heavenly Father. But in the end I said I know it is in your hands. After that i waited. THe entire last week I worried about it but prepared myself to accept to leave. And Friday came and President finally called around 4 and he only talked with Sr. Royer. When she hung up she started crying and said, "you are staying and Sr. Brunt is coming. And i am being sent to Marseille to be in a Trio." I literally wanted to jump up and down. I was so excited. I thank my Heavenly Father to be able to stay. And with Sr. Brunt. She was in the MTC with me for 3 weeks. I love her. This is going to be a good transfer!! I am so excited!!!!!! I love this city and I love the people here. I know that Heavenly FAther has prepared people for us to find and to teach and it is up to us to work hard and to find them. And with it Christmas time what better message to share than the true meaning of Christmas. I have really realized this week that I have been selfish and until the last few days have not really thought about the true meaning of Christmas. It has hitme in the face this week as we have contacted a couple of different people one man has been homeless for a long time. We passed by him not really thinking to talk to him but something pushed us to turn around. a memeber had given us some packaged soup and we gave it to him. He was very grateful. He told us a little about him that he has been on the street since his mom died a couple of years ago. He has nothing he lives on the street and sleeps where he can finda place. As I walked home i thought about all the blessings i have more than anything i have a family who loves me a I have somewhere to call home I have food to eat.Another time day we were contacting and ran into another man who 2 weeks ago had everything. A job, a wife, a home and now he has nothing. he is sleeping at the red cross and has one sack of belongings. He didnt have much hope, There wasnt much we could do for him.And encore we have a lot of single sisters in the ward and amis as well that will spend Christmas by themselves. They dont have family close so they will spend Christmas by themselves. I really got to thinking. Christmas is the time to celebrate the birth of Christ and to think of all the things he has done for us. To do something for someone else; to look beyond what we need or want and find someone who could use a helping hand. We have decided I dont know how we are going to do it but we are going to do some kind of christmas meal at the church and invite these people that are all alone. I realized i dont need anything i have all my needs taken care of. It took seeing so many people who have nothing and who are alone to realize that is the reason for the season. the lights the decorations add to the atmosphere and remind me everyday that there is so much i can give to others. more than anything I have the opportunity to share the gospel.I love this time of year. I love what i am doing. I am so excited for this new transfer. TO continue to serve the Lord and to share the real meaning for the season!Have a good week!

Work hard and travel safe!


Monday, November 30, 2009

November 30, 2009

This last week was a little weird all or our amis were really busy and we didnt really get to see or teach them :( but like last night we stopped by to see a sister in the ward that is active but who I have never talked to. It was the best visit of the week. She told us a cool story of when she was at the temple one time ther temple president had spoken to a group that she was with. she said the meeting was absolutelly amazing and as they were leaving a brother said to her "i wish that he(the temple president) could come to Perpignan. We need someone like him there." After he had said that the temple president who was just behind them siad "you know what you dont need me to come there, you dont need to wish to be like me. You can be like me. All the good that you see in me you can create and be yourself." - Sister Meunier went on to say that she had never thought about it like that. but how true it is that we need to be the positive change we want to see in the world. I was so gald that we had stopped to see her last night.
It is interesting at this moment in time all of the new converts here in Perpignan are having a trial of their faith. We had the chance to visit with celine this last week. And I thought that she was doing well. But come to find out she is having a hard time too. All that to say that I realize that Heavenly Father will try our faith just to the point when we dont think we can handle it anymore. The cool thing is he never forgets us and he is always there. But like Sr. Royer keeps sharing that if we are being faithful to our covenants and all that Heavenly Father asks of us we have every right to ask for specific blessings.

Pictures - Yeah!

Sister Oger cutting Jen's hair

Final version of the haircut and showing her Christmas spirit.

Jenni modeling her new coat!

Ward Mission Leader who reminds Jen of Gramps!

Monday, November 23, 2009

November 23, 2009

We have been so busy this last week we even had to start making appointments with people for the next week because we didnt have place. It is such a blessing to be busy and working hard. I am learning a lot about repentence and forgiveness this transfer. Everyone has the chance to repent and to change. There is no exception to that Christ doesnt tell us that only a certain number of people will be allowed to repent but rather each of us can and that if we have the desire and are silling to change he is willing to forgive us. Sister Garcia is an amazing example of forgiving others. She has suffered a lot in her life and when we were talking to her the other night I was near tear just listening to her story and how she has changed.
On top of weing busy I dont think we have had so many rendezvous cancelled at the same time. There were 2 days that almost every single one of our Rendezvous was cancelled just minutes before or a couple of hours before. It was frustrating at first but then as we worked and went with our backup plan to go see other people or to talk to the people on the road we were blessed. I cant remember which night but our Rendezvous was cancelled and as we were walking to go see one of our other amis we were stopped 2 different times by men who wanted to know what we were doing. It was really cool to see that there are people all along the way. That Laybe it was in heavelny Fathers plan that what we had planned was cancelled so that we could talk to the other people. One of the men was actually the man that owns the cyber cafe where we do our emails. We got talking and he said that he has never met someone like us that wears a badge that is not nice, polite and humble. He is muslim and not really interested in changing he beliefs right now but I really believe that he will always remember those missionaries.
We havent been able to meet with The girl that we contacted at bus stop last week. She was sick one day and something happened with her daughter the next but I have a lot of hope for her.
I dont remember if i have told you much about Rose-Marie one of the less active sisters we have been working with for quite a while now; But she raelly is an artist. She has showed us a lot of paintings that she has done and last night when we were there visiting she actually gave us one. well she gave me two. She is the sweetest sister. She is amazingI dont know anyone that prays as much as she does for other people. And when she gets tired she reads the book of Mormon.
I am so grateful for good people around me. I have been thinking about my blessing with it Thanksgiving this week.(its sad they dont celebrate thanksgiving here but we might do a little celebrating as missionaries) I really am so blessed and protected. I am have great family and so many great examples.
I hope that you have a good feast this week! I love you lots!

Monday, November 16, 2009

November 16, 2009

This week was good. We had our Zone Conference in Toulouse Wednesday and the theme that our zone leaders have chosen for this transfer is "open your mouth and see the miracles." In conjunction with something that Elder Holland had taught us "teach the byt the way lesson" where ever we are teach find someone to teach. It was so cool I had decided that I would do the very best I could to talk with the people where ever we are. and I have been praying that Heavenly Father would help me to see the miracles each day. He hads done just that. One really cool miracle was on Friday we had just left the church to catch the bus. (The bus stop is right next to the Church.) At the stopThere was a girl about 25 sitting there and asked us what time it was. her simple question started a conversation. During the conversation she said that she was from Africa, the same country as a brother in the ward. Long story short we talke about the church just briefly and as the bus arrived i asked if she would like to talk more another dayShe was excited and said oh ya I will write my address doan when we get on the bus. As we continued to talk she asked lots of questions. I feel that she is really prepared we are going to teach her this week. Heavenly Father really does guide our words if we put our trust in him and open our mouths.
Another miracle was Gabriel and Marcel both came to church yesterday. Gabriel is amazing since he had already been taught a few years ago it is cool to see the spirit work on him and help him remember the things he felt and learned before. for instance we were reading a scripture and at the end he said i remember that verse. i remember having read it before.
Honestly it is the little things that are the biggest miracles. Heavenly Father gives us miracles everyday And I have found that I need to pay more attention.
This work really is amazing! There are oppontunities all around to teach and to help others. But not everyone is willing to listen or to accept help that is why we have to continue and try again or try in another way. When we show Heavenly Father that we are willing to work and submit to doing what he has asked he is there and will help. I know that he loves each one of us. He is there for us.

Monday, November 9, 2009

November 9, 2009

My testimony has been strengthened this week. A little over a month ago i had told Celine that when we decide to follow the commandments and make a strong decision to change that is when the opposition is the stongest. Well that was the case this week for me. after the weekend of being well fed spiritually and really having that desire to do better and to work harder I have fixed some goals and was ready to do everything that i could. I can testify that Miracles happen amongest the opposistion.
Wednesday came Sr. Royer has literally been sick since she got to Perpignan. But she has tried dfferent things that the mission DR has suggested and nothing has worked. And Tuesday she was not doing well at all. We had a day full and were going to be running all day so instead of doing her language studies she took a nap to see of that would help. We ended up spending a good part of the afternoon at the doctors office. Sr. Oger had given us a ride and when she dropped us off she told Sr. Royer to get some rest. And she did. While she was sleeping I was able to make cookies as a thank you for some of the members as thank yous. So that was one advantage. Then Thursday we had a weird day, nothing we had planned worked out. SR. Royer had to go have blood drawn well we went the first time and she didnt have a paper for her insurance with her they couldnt do it. so we went back to our apartment and got the paper this time she didnt have enough money so we had to leave and come back again. It was litearlly a circus; I am so grateful for doctors at home and the fact they can do everything all at the same place at the same time. So after those 2 days I was thinking what else can we do evertying thatwe plan is falling through. But Heavenly FAther really did bless us on Friday He really led us for the day. We had Rendezvous with a lot of less active members and were able to see all of them. The very last one was Sr. Dulac. She is awesome. She was converted when she was 14. she is now married to a man that is awesome but not a member. (but I think one day he will be) And they have a little girl elora. She has such a strong testimony and even though she doesnt come to church very often right now she has not forgot and she is still strong.

Monday, November 2, 2009

November 2, 2009

This weekend was amazing all of the missionaries in the mission were in one place at the same time. I think we have somewhere around 80-90 missionaries total. there are 17 sisters. We were all assembled in Toulouse. It was the coolest experience to see to be there when Elder holland and his sister Holland, and Elder Kopischke walked into the chapel. They are men called of God. I can now say that i have shaken the hand of an apostle. He had planned the time to greet us all. I cant explain the feeling the spirit as i was standing face to face with elder Holland. Then as he talked to us. He has a great love for this gospel i have no doubt that he know that this church is true. I was very grateful yesterday that I understand english. During the Stake conference of course when Elder and Sister Holland, and Elder Kopischke talked they had someone translate. The translation miss a little bit of the enthusiasm and power. THey really focused on Christ. Christ has not and will not ever forget us or leave us alone. He is always there!
The conference was a great ending to the week. the work ahs beena little bit rough but it can only get better. The conference brought some great blessings. A young man who has been less active until just recently volunteered to take us to Toulouse yesterday. He has really started to come around and is finding the importance of the gosple again in his life. that was miracle number one Gael took us to conference. Miracle 2 was another one of our less active sisters who is going through many trials in her life decided that she would come to the conference. I was able to talk to her just breifly after yesterday and she she said she was reminded of how much Christ really loves her. and as we were leaving she said "a dimanche" or see you next sunday. She is going to come to church next week! I am so grateful today for all of the blessing that I have and to see the hand of the Lord in my life. This gospel is true. It is not a fairy tale. Christ will come again. He lives and loves each one of us. even if we arent perfect.

Monday, October 26, 2009

Halloween Pictures from France

Jenni with her companion, Sister Royer
Jen's Halloween Costume - half missionary - half goof ball

Jenni with a ward member dressed as Sister Lake
An American Family
Ward Halloween Party
The Sister Missionaries planned a Ward Halloween Party for Saturday, October 24th and it was a huge success; everyone had fun.

October 26, 2009

we were trying to teach Mattius this last week that Heavenly Father is there that he does hear and answers. We dont need an appointment we dont have to worry if he is on vacation or if it is his day off because he is always there. It is hard for Mattius to understand that there is a way to get rid ofall the pains and trials that there is someone that understand exactly how we feel. But little by little he is understanding. Before I forget I have to tell you about the Halloween Party and this weekend. Sr. Royer and i really stressed and worked to prepare everything for the party. All week we were preparing little things. I have never planned a ward party before and i have to say that it is stressful; But it all turned out great! Saturday was a busy day. There was a baptism Saturday morning; It was a young man, Teddy, the same age as I am. He is actually married to a member that has been in active for a while. It was another amazing baptism; It is cool to see the love that grows betweena couple when the nonmember spouse is baptized. And they start progressing together to go to the temple.AFter the baptism we decorated a little bit bu then had a couple of rendezvous. The party was supposed to start at 6 and we got there about 5 to finish decorating and preparing; like most ward parties every started showing up shortly after 6. There were tons of people that came. It turned out so sell. They ate; The little kids did trick or treating int he church, and Fr. Neuvre brought his computer and was the DJ for the Evening. Everyone loved it! Halloween isnt really celebrated here. so it is kindo f a weird concept for them, but they love it. This week was an interesting week and a week that if you look at numbers and things was the greatest week but yesterday we were really blessed. We met this guy and the road and had just said hi to him when he says to us do you want my address come over visit with me and eat with me. It is has been so long since the missionaries have been to see me. I guess he lost contact with the missionaries and was soexcited when he saw us yesterday. Then shortly after that we were sitting on a bench waiting for Didier when another man walked up and asked what is your message do you preach the good word of GOd? I can testify that Heavenly Father helps us out. There are people that are searching for the light of Christ in their life. I am so excited for this week. We have set a goal to find 2 families to teach this transfer. And we are going to find them. This week is also the conference with Elder holland. I cant explain to you how extremely Excited I am! So tune in next week tko hear what he had to teach us. I love you! I hope that you have an incredible week! Happy Halloween!

Monday, October 19, 2009

October 19, 2009

I cant belive how fasts this week went by. As I was thinking about what I wanted to share with you and just what had happened this week i couldnt help but think that it feel like it should still be the first of October. Anywho It has changed from being nice fall weather to being freezing cold. The wind has blown pretty constantly for the last week. Soeur Royer and I decided that there is really no use in doing our hair because the minute we walk out the door it blows away. We are finding more and more that the wind and skirts dont get along very well....Aside for that it was a great week. There is a sister that we have been visiting a lot lately named Sr. Garcia. She is someone that has gives all she ahs for others. She is divorced but still stays strong, She has a son that lives not to far and she would do anything for him and his family. SHe has been like that all her life. But now she is in the last year of work and so stressed. so stressed that she is sick. The sad thing is that she is in a position that she needs someone to give back to her. So we go and visit when we can. We have talked about how sometimes Heavenly Father pushes us to the point that we really cant take any more yet we know that we cant giv up an just have to keep going even if it is only one day at a time. She is so strong. That is exactly it we have to stay stong even when we think that we will break. I have learned something really cool this week form One of our new amis Mattius. He loves to talk and it get hard to teach him. but the other nigth we were getting ready to go and he asked us what he could do because he has some problems with his neighbors and he doesnt know what to do. As he explained the problem we didnt know what to tell him he could do but the idea came to have him read int he Book of Mormon and pray. We invited him to read Enos that night and to start with a Prayer and ask God his question. He agreed but asked if we would read at the same time as he did. We agreed knowing that he was going to receive and answer. We called him the next day and he expalined that as he read he had a voice tell him what he should do. Later in the week he asked for another chapter that he could find an answer in. The same thing happend he received his answer as he read. For me I am realizing that it is the same for us that everytime we open the scriptures we can receive an answer. Like the promise in Moroni "if you will ask with a sincere heart" you can receive an answer. He doesnt say that it will only work one time but everytime we open and read we can find answers to all or our worries and questions. Sometimes it is jus peace that we find. I love the Book of Mormon I know that it is the word fo God. Its incredible to have the time each morning to study it fora few minutes.

Monday, October 12, 2009

October 12, 2009

This last week I have realized even more how often the spirit speaks to me. A lot of times it is just little things a little thought as we are getting ready to leave the apartment or the thought to talk to someone. Saturday night as we were planning and making a list of all the people we needed to talk to at church I had the thought that I needed to Talk to Sr. Ramano and see if we could go visit this week. I didnt write it down but I thought about. Then yesterday as we were getting ready to start Sunday school she came in and handed the book for the lesson to the Elders and asked them to teach and then walked out. I could see that she was crying. I knew then why i had had the prompting Saturday to talk to her. I go up and followed her out. By th time Sr. Royer and I caught up to here she was just sobbing. I we spent Sunday school talking to her. She is struggling as a single mother with 2 teenagers. Really there was nothing that we could say or do to make it all better but just being there for her was enough. It is the promptings like that that we need to act on everytime. When we act on those promptings the Lord sends us more. It has been interesting in this ward. I love this ward. I have realized that the work in this ward is to strengthen the memebers as much as it is to find new members. Yesterday as I walked into sacrement meeting I saw a less active sister that we have been working with that hasn't come for i Dont know how long, then a brother that we stopped by and saw one time, then Celine and her family. i had this overwhelming feeling of love and joy come over me. I know that the work I am doing is important even though sometimes it seems useless. I cant explain how happy Iam to be here. There is always someone that we can touch it may take time but it is not useless. I am very content. Heavely Father has blessed us so much this week. We found a new ami this week, Mathieus. We had received a list of old referrals that the mission office had sent at the beginning of the year but the missionaries hadn't contacted and he was one of them. When we called he was more than excited to talk to us again. He has had a hard life and is looking for peace and happiness. I could go on and on with all the blessings of this week. I know that this is the Lord's work I know that he has called us to find our brothers and sisters that are lost and in need of us.

Monday, October 5, 2009

October 5, 2009

FOr the Saturady Sessions of Conference the only way we could go was if we had an ami or one of our less actives that there. I knew that for the first session (the RS) we would have someone there. We were lucky and someone for both session Saturday. Just before it started we had a rendez vous with Marie. As we entered the chappel everything was already set up and I could hear the choir singing. I have never been so excited for conference in my life. During our entire rendez-vous I couldnt quit smiling. I loved the Relief Society session. Seeing all of the sisters in the conference center and know ing that you and Kort were there, and just seeing the little piece of home I was overewhelmed and couldnt help but cry. I cant explain the feeling that overcame me. There is a special unity in the Relief Society that you cant find in any other group of women. It is an orginazation of charity. And we share that from sister to sister to strengthen each other. I felt that there was a real theme of listening to the spirit and holding to the values of the church and to our families. And if we do these things that is when we will find the most happiness. For the sessions yesterday I was able to listen to it in english for me the element of hearing the proper voices of the Prophet and the apostles has more power. The people that translate just dont have that umph in their voices. I feel like I have rambled for most of this email. But I want you to know that more than anything my testimony of this gospel was strengthened this week. I know that we have a prophet today, President Monson, who leads us. I know that if we will listen to his counsel and apply it in our lives we will receive countless blessings. I know that this church is True. Christ lives and stands at the Head of his church. Heavenly Father hears and answers our prayers.

Monday, September 28, 2009

Pictures from France

Soeur Folituu and Sister Jenni Lake
At Celine's Baptism
(Doesn't Jen look happy?)

Septermber 28, 2009

I have to tellyou that this week was such a good week. It was a very neat experience to attend the bapsim of Celine. On Wednesday we went to see her. Like always she prepared a good lunch and we passed a couple of hours talking. She has been well prepared. She was excited and nervous all at the same time. Saturday finally came. Jean-luke and Celine got all dressed in white and were absolutely beautiful. I dont have the words to explain how touching to witness the baptsim. It was amoment that Jean-luke has been waiting for and praying for for a long time and moment that Celine has been preparing for to quite some time. You could see the great love they have for each other. As I talked with Celine after she couldnt quit smiling she is so happy. I was able to talk to Jean-luke for a minute and he said he didnt realize that his love for his wife could go so deep. I love that family. I think that within a little moment Lea, celine's daughter will be baptized as well. I look forward to hearing form them when they go to the temple to be sealed. What a special occassion it is to see an ami make covenants with our Heavenly Father.I am so excited for our other ami Marie. She is making such progress and really has the desire to learn more and to change her life. The sad thing is that she has been coming to the ward for so long that there is a lot of doubt from the members. As Sr. Royer and I have talked everyone can change. Yes it takes some people more time than other but the beauty of the Atonement each and everyone of us can repent and change our lives. I pray that the ward will see the change that we have seen and help her in her journey and preperation for baptism.

Monday, September 21, 2009

September 21, 2009

We are preparing for the Baptism of Celine this week. She is amazing her and her husband have done most of the work. Are job has been easy; Satan has been working so hard on her to place the doubts and fear in her mind. She is so strong and every time she works through it She is so cool!There was another baptism this last Saturday. We had invited one of our amis to come with us. Her name is MArie. She has been in contact with the church for close to 10 years and never attended a baptism. It has been crazy the since we started really teaching her she has not been progressing but after the Baptism we talked about the importance of baptsim and making commitments with the Lord. She was really touched by the spirit of the baptism and wants to be baptized. It is so cool to see how it takes time and just the right moment for the spirit to touch the heart those who you may think it is impossible to touch. Just this morning we had a really cool appointment. We had fixed a rendez-vous with Henriette last week and this morning was the only time she could so we went. As we had studied and prepared for the lesson we felt she really needed more of an understanding of the Book of Mormon. During my personal studies I found some Verses in 2 Nephi 29 that really explained why. Then in the few chapters just before Nephi prophecies of the coming for the the Book of Mormon. As i studied I thought how cool is that for him to see our day and to see how it will all unfold. What I didnt realize was how much that study would help us during the lesson. She asked some questions that if I wouldnt had studied this morning I dont think we would have been able to answer confidently. The spirit guided us and helped us use the scriptures to explain the answers. I am so grateful for the guidence of the spirit. In something that I thought was little turned out to be a big help in the end.

Monday, September 14, 2009

September 14, 2009

It is the start of a new mutation, with a new companion and a new spirit. The work continues to go forth Celines baptism is in just a week and a half she was not so happy when Sr. Folituu told her the other night that she was leaving. Sr. Folituu has told me that it is a fulfillment of her partriarical blessing that she wont see the fruits of her work while she is here. And it is also kind of funny because she had been in Nice just before I came and she had been teaching Violette and Marc who were baptized my first week and here in Perpignan with Celine. Celine continues to be so strong she is so ready to dive into the font. There was another baptism this last week. The spirit is always so strong at a baptism. It is such a cool experience to see the change in people as they take upon them the name of Christ and make those first covenants. Thursday when we went to our Zone development we had been told that we would be doing some work and each companionship would be doing something different. The Elders had called us Wednesday and told us to bring clothes so that we could do some service. We were all excited to know that our task was going to be service. The morning started out a little rough i forgot my tag at our apartment and didnt realiwe it until we were on the train. But Heavenly Father blessed me and My new magnetic tags were waiting at the chappel when i got there. I was so excited! Well at the end of the normal development and after our interviews with president we were given an agenda and a map and then we were introduced to a memeber from the ward in Carcasonne that we would be working with for the afternoon. It was a really fun afternoon. We got to go out and contact and porte a porte. On our agenda we were given specific roads to go to and certain times to be in at the differents places. I have to say that it was a good afternoon to work with the sister from carcasonne and to search for the elect. We were able to meet some nice people and to work with the members. All around it was a good experince. I can testify that it doenst matter where we go if we have prayed and asked the Lord for direction for who he wants us to talk to and what he wants us to say he will place those people on our paths. He helps me to open my moth and helps me know what to say. He is by our side to help us at all times . I Know that with all my soul.

Monday, September 7, 2009

September 7, 2009

On Tuesday we had our District meeting as we were finishing we were getting ready to take a picture in the foyer of the chappel when this lady comes to the door. As we started talking we found out she was baptized almost 20 years ago but has been inactive for wuite awhile. She said she had been looking thought her things and found the picture taken the day of her baptism and she wanted to come to the chapel and see if anyone was there. The craziest thing is Sr. Folituu and had already planned to pass by her house that afternoon. The Lord works in mysterious ways. We ended up going to her house the next day and talking with her. She told us she feels completely alone in her life. It was cool to just talk with her and get to know her a little bit. We invited her to the baptism of the elders on Saturday and she came. It was amazing the difference in her face. Elder Blosil and I were talking about it. Going from Tuesday to Wednesday it was like there was a light that had turned on in her she was filled with hope and a little happiness. She came to church with us yesterday and we are going to see her again tonight. It is really cool to see some one refind the joy in the gospel.Our amis Celine is progressing really well and is so excited for her baptism. Yesterday at Church i could tell something was bothering her. As we talked she said that it was like a constant battle between the little angel on one shoulder and the devil on the other all week. The adversary is working his hardest with her. We talked and gave her some suggestions of things to do like pray; read the scriptures or even call us or her Husband when she needs a little encouragement. I was thinking about it Satan knows when we have made a decision to do something right and between the time we make the decision and the time we actually accomplish our goal whether it be baptism or going to the temple or on a mission. he is going to try us and work as hard as he can to get us not to do it. I think of a a quote also that says "It is important to know that Satan exists and has power but is even more important to know that God Exists and has more power." We just have to decide who we are going to listen to or what power we are going to use.

Monday, August 31, 2009

August 31, 2009

It has been a good week. We finally had our zone conference. It was so refreshing. I was thinking about it this morning you know when you are hot and you take a drink and realize that you were really thirsty and could just keep drinking. that is how zone conference was. I didnt realize that I was so spiritually thirsty, I couldnt drink it in fast enough. It was areally good conference. President and Soeur Carter had been to their regional training the week before and had many things to tell us. I was suprised to hear that in Europe there is 70% inactivity. As you can imagine we talked a lot about how we can help the inactives come back. I am realizing more and more that working with inactives ia big part of missionary work. I have also realized the importance to do visiting and home teaching especially if it is someone who is less active because we have been working on contacting the members in the ward list that we dont know as we were talking with some of the other members and such asking about different memebers they dont know very many of the inactives. Its interesting too we are finding many members who have moved, a couple who have died, and some that have turned back to their previous religion. In the back of my mind I keep thinking about the words to the the hymn 220, "I would would be my brothers keeper, i would learn the healers art....I would be my brothers keeper Lord I would follow thee." I've always thought the parable of the lost lamb to be talking about the nonmembers the people who dont have the gospel but really it is also the our brothers and sisters in the gospel who have just lost their way. Its an important work to do.
I cant imagine being anywhere else than here serving the Lord. No it is not easy, nor is it always fun but it is possible and at the end of the day it is always worth it.

Monday, August 24, 2009

August 24, 2009

Firday I was probably the best of the week. We had a rendez-vous with Celine she live way out of town so it was an all afternoon event but such a good lesson. She continues to read the book of Mormon and prepare for her baptism. I love talking to her she told me that she has been searching and prepareing slowly for this day and now she can hardly wait to be baptized. Her Husband is just as excited as she is. when we got back to Perpignan we had a Lesson with Cheik. I love to teach him. He always has such good questions and has a strong desire to learn more. It is an amazing feeling to see the light come on in some ones eyes and for them to start to understand their purpose here. We were at the church for the last Rendez-vous of the day with Christophe. I don't know if I have told you anything about Christophe so here is a little background. He is 42 and is basically starting his life over. He quit his job because he wasnt getting payed; He is also searching for an apartment. So he is starting new. our lesson with im was one of the most powerful lessons we've had; We had Jean-Luke and Christian, 2 members with us. The 2 Are absolutely amazing. They connnected very well with Christophe We started talking about the book of Mormon as the discussion went on we talked about how right now he is starting to rebuild his life and how if he builds on Christ and how Christ is a sure foundation. I cant explain how powerful Jean-Lukes testimony was. Heavenly Father really does prepare his childern to recieve the missionaries to receive his gospel. As we knelt to pray at the end the I really felt like Christophe is going to be baptized pretty soon. Oh how amazing the spirit is. The Lord prepares us to do his work and to help his children. I am so blessed to be here. It was very humbling yesterday we were invited to eat at a members house and as we sat and talked I realized that I understand French. I dont have to think about every phrase. Yes there are things I still dont understand but it is making sense. One funny thing about the family they have a son that is almost 16 and really I could have sworn that it was Jackson they act the same it was just funny. And a good reminder of my little brother.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

French Missionaries singing?

Missionaries practicing ??? their singing in the MTC.

Monday, August 17, 2009

August 17, 2009

What an amazing week. It takes being humble and running and working all day and thinking that you have accomplished nothing then turning back at the end of the day and realizing the Heavenly Father was there everystep of the way and really blessed you in more ways you can count. THat is exactly how this week has gone. Tuesday was a perfect example of that We walked all day in the heat. Around 7:30 we had turned down this road to pass by and old amis apartment when I saw Didier. He had a crutch in one hand and 2 large bags full of groceries and he was walking veryslow. I said to Sr. Folituu I think he needs some help. When we asked if we could help him it was like a light turned on in his face. He was so appreciative. I dont know how he had walked so far already with the bags they were really heavy. We took the bags and walked with him to his apartment. Come to find out he makes the trip solo to get groceries every week and never has he had someone offer to help him. He is older and has many medical problems. It was a good experience to get to know him a little bit. We offered to help him each week. It is always so uplifting when you can serve someone else. He is there and always listening. Even on those days taht are long and frustrating he is there and helping us.

Monday, August 10, 2009

August 10, 2009

Just this morning during our comp study we started planning our lesson for lext sunday; We get to teach the YW. I couldn't be more excited. As we were talking Sr. folituu explained that they dont do the weekly activities or activities at all. And our lesson something to the effect of how activites can help strengthen the YW. I am so excited to plan and maybe in some way help them learn to love young womens like I did. Like my mom, I like change. I really couldn't be any happier than i am right now. I love pergignan and my companion. Soeur Folituu is from New Callidonia. She was converted 8 years ago when she was 18. She is awesome. She does not speak english; that means I speak French all of the time. In just one week I am amazed at how much easier it is and how natual it is becoming. It is getting harder to write and speak english than it is to speak French. What a great blessing. I swear that she is happy all of the time which makes it easier for me to be happy. We sing and laugh and talk all the time as we are walking and while we are in the apartment and on the bus... ok so just all of the time. As for Pergignan it is much smaller than Nice. Iloved it the first day! As we pulled into town in the train and i saw the mountains in the distance, and then there are fields and open space. I honestly felt like I was a little closer to home. Something about the mountains and the feel of open space brings me comfort. i really think it is the small town girl in me. We walk alot here. there are buses but not nearly as many as in Nice and they dont always go where we want to go; Not only is that good for the health but for the contacting too. not only do we have the mountains in the distance but the sea is in the other direction. So really it is the best of both worlds.A lot of our work this week has been with less active members. This city is full of less active. I am seeing the importance of "being my brother keeper;" And helping the new members and those who could be struggling, to feel welcome and loved at church. and the importance of doing our visiting and home teaching. I pray that we will be inspired to say the right things and to really be able to help this ward become stronger. Yesterday it was fun to meet some of themembers. They are always excited to meet the new missionaries. They really love the missionaries. After church we had the opportunity to go eat with the family Oger. They are an awesome couple. they take turns coming to church each week because they have a little girl titan who is severly handicapped and cant come to church. It was so fun to be with titan for a few minutes. I was reminded of how special the handicapped are and also how much i miss Kyler.

Monday, August 3, 2009

August 3, 2009 - First Transfer

The big news first. Today was transfers. Sr. Bitanga and I both thought that we would stay together in Nice for another transfer but Friday night the assistants called and said I was being transfered Perpignan and would serve with Sr. Foulituu. To be honest I was really excited. I was ready for a change. I loved my time in Nice and am really going to miss it but I am excited to be ina new city.Saying good bye as always was not my favorite thing. THere are some members and amis that will forever hold a special place in my heart. But to back up a little bit We had a crazy week. It is deffinitely summer and very hot. It is always refreshing to climb on the tram or the bus for a moment of air conditioning. We had to travel to Toulouse so that I could do my medical paperwork for my carte that allows me to stay here. Tuesday we went as far as Marseille and worked with the sisters there for the evening. Then Wednesday we took the train for 4 hours to toulouse ate with one of the districts at the mission office went to my appointment then got back on the train to Marseille. i have to say my favorite part was to be able to see and talk with other sisters. Being in Nice we dont get to see them very often. Tuesday and Wednesday nights in Marseille we had companion exchanges. I loved every minute of it. I was able to work with Sr. Roca. We got talking and just getting to know each other. She told me something she learned when she had just started her mission she said remember to always "soyez vous meme." which means be yourself. A light all of a sudden turned on. for a couple weeks I have just not been content. but really I hadnt been myself. It was a great moment for me one of those everything makes sense now and I knew what I needed to do to be content. The rest of the exchange was fun it was good to learn different approaches for contacting and to be balanced in teaching; She is an amazing missionary.
Our testimonies the things we know the things the spirit has testified to us, no one can touch. I am so grateful for my testimony. i know this gospel is true. It wasnt something that I found or proved in chemestry lab or read in a book, it is things i have prayed about studied and learned by the spirit. No one can take taht away form us. Testifing is the strongest tool we have as missionaries. I'm grateful for this gospel for the knowledge of a Savior who loves me who is always with me who wont leave us comfortless.

Monday, July 27, 2009

July 27, 2009

Our schedule was all thrown off this week. We had to get all of our stuff repacked Tuesday so that we could move WEdnesday morning. The couple that is called to over see the housing for the mission came and cleaned our new apartment then helped us move our stuff. Our new apartment is so much nicer than our old one. It is in the center of the city which is very helpful. We were unable to get all of our stuff moved Wednesday morning because of some trouble with the cops and not being able to park the car just outside the new apartment.....Wednesday night found us sleeping on our mattresses on the floor with boxes and suitcases all around. We didnt have our chairs or desks so w e ate and studied on the floor as well. It was kind of fun. Brother and Soeur Alanic and the elders finished moving our stuff over Thursday morning. Trying to get all moved took a lot of our time. and really it was spiritually draining. One would think that it would be a nice change of pace and a break from the work but really it was just exhausting.Walking and teaching all day can be tiring but just physically it is spiritually recharging. If that makes sense. Yesterday we had a really neat experience. We only had one lesson for the entire afternoon. We had just finished it and were walking to catch the Tram with Nelly(who had taught with us in the lesson) We were waiting to cross the road when I saw this lady that we Soeur Mongas and i had contacted a long time ago. I debated for a second whether to say anthing to her or not; lets just say that i followed that promting. Next to her was a young man, named Karim. He asked us something then we started talking. the other lady left but Soeur Bitanga, Nelly and I stood and talked to karim for close to 2 hours. REally the time passed really quickly. We fixed a Rendez-vous with him for tonight. The Sporot really touched him. As we were saying goodbye he said there is something different about you. i could see the light in your eyes. As we walked away we talked about what a miriacle that was. we are only in that area maybe once a week. Heavenly Father really does direct us to find those that are ready, those who have been prepared.It was really a testimony builder for me that even those little promptings are important to follow. The lady is not interest in the gospel but because she was there we found Karim. On saturday I was so grateful to have rules. We have been teaching this single man that is in his 50's. He has seemed really interested and read and was full of questions everytime. In a Rendez-vous earlier in the week we engaged him to come to church he said that he was scared to come so w e suggested that Saturday w e could all go to the Church and we could explain a little of what goes on during the meetings. As hard as we tried we couldnt find a sister of the ward to go with us so when we got to his appartment we said we couldnt ride in his car with him but that we would have to take the bus. well come to find out he really didn't want to go he wanted us to go in his car. As we continued to talk we foudn out he wasnt reallyinterested in the church but in us.If we didnt have rule about being alone with people of the opposite sex we could have been in a lot of trouble. I will forever be grateful for the mission rules and the commandments because really they for our goodthey dont take away our freedom they actually protect us and give us more freedom. I know with all my heart that Heavenly Fathere watches out for the missionaries. He leads us and hleps us when we are willing to do our part. I look forward to this new week to move forward and progess in the work of the Lord.

Monday, July 20, 2009

July 20, 2009

I am getting more confidence in myself to just open my mouth and talk with people. Talking to people is the only way to find new amis. We have a lot of amis that are on vacation right now so it is hard to fix appointments. That is one thing ab out the French they take their vacation seriously. Everyone takes almost a whole month to go on vacation. and most people go this time of year.We had a really cool experience this last week. Rossni one of our amis has been telling us for almost 2 months that she know the next step is baptism and that she is wants to be baptized but she just isnt ready yet. She hasn't come to church for the last month. I was really beginning to think that we wouldnt be teaching her anymore, I kept praying and hoping that we would atleast be able to fix a rendez vous with her. Finally she called us and said we could see her Thursday. I was so excited we planned to talk about baptism again and propose a baptism date with a plan to help her prepare for that date. Before we could really start she told us that since the last time she came to church she has really felt a difference in her life like something was missing. She recogniwed that it was the spirit. She wants to be baptized but she doesnt want to cause tension in her family. They say it is ok but she wants a little more confirmation on their part. It was a really neat experience to talk to her and be guided by the spirit to promise that if she prepares to be baptized and works for it that Heavenmy Father will bless her family and help them as well. She is going to be baptized on the 15 of August! She is amazing! She also told us that she finished reading the BOM this last week. Her testimony is strong. I cant help but think of all the good she will do in the church and in her life. Another cool experience yesterday we had no rendez-vous after church which meant pass backs and contacting all day. There was one man that said to call him and he might be able to see us yesterdayso we called him We were in luck he was free. It ended up being a really good rendez-vous. He doesnt have a religion but he has a very strong testimony of Christ. The rest of teh afternoon we were really guided in the places we went I dont have enough time to write all of the miracles that happened. Just one other was an inactive sister. The Bishop has asked us to teach her and help her come back tok church. She was baptized 30 years ago but never gained a testimony of JosephSmith or the BOM. I was thinking about it that is exactly why she is inactive without a testimony of those 2 thing really there is no difference in our church and anyother church. She has agreed to see us again and hopefully we can help her gain our find her testimony of the BOM and Joseph Smith. I am so grateful for the opportunity to be here serving; No it is not the easiest thing i have ever done in my life but at the end of the day i think of how manytimes the Lord directed me or helped me to talk to someone, then I realize that those moments of being tired or rejected were worth it. the reward in the end was so much greater!

Friday, July 17, 2009

More Pictures from Nice

Jenni with her huge calzone at the Bishops restaurant
Jenni with Nice in the background!
She looks happy!

Monday, July 13, 2009

July 13, 2009

I have to say that this week was a week of miracles and jsut really good lessons. On Saturday we had a lesson with a new amis; He had been contacted by the other sisters in January and agreed to meet with us. His name is VIn and speaks English. I was excited to teach a lesson in English. During the lesson the spirit was so strong. It was a lesso unlike any other i've ever had. He really has no religious background. It was very humbling to teach him how to pray then teach the Restoration. Not going to lie i went into the lesson a little big headed thinking that it will be easy to teach in English. Let me tell you it wasnt. yes i did have the vocabulary but when I teach my mind thinks French, it was very humbling. The Spirit really is the teacher in all lessons. I think I have said this before but I dont know for sure but this ward loves to eat together. since most of them live a little ways from the church they bring the stuff they need to prepare a dish for a picnic. Normally they eat together after a baptism, fast and testimony meeting or if they have an activity during the week. but yesterday there was a group of them that decided to have a picnic just because and invited us to stay. I had a really good time just alking witht he members and helping prepare the food. Until Friday I hadn't tried anything that i absolutely didn't like. Friday we ate with some members. Soeur Aslin had worked with us earlier in the week and she said she would make some african food for Soeur Bitanga. She made this chicken (that was really good), and this stuff called foofoo. It was so grose. I dont even know how to explain it. if was goopy and kind of like bread dough. litterally it made me gag. i tried my hardest to pretend that I like it. but Soeur Aslin knows me well enough and could tll i didnt like it. I hope that i never have to eat that again. One last miracle for the week yesterday we were in a parking lot waiting to meet someone when we saw Anastacio. He hadnt come to chruch and he hadnt answered when we called after. come to find out he had locked himself out of his house and didnt have his phone. But we were talking with him and following up on his reading in the BOM and his prayers; he said that He finally received his Answer!!!! He knows it is true. It was a really neat experience.This work is amazing. It is really the work of GOd on the Earth. There is no place i would rather be. It is not easy but every minute is worth it.

Friday, July 10, 2009

July 7, 2009

This week was really good. It was a week of reevaluating and setting goals. First Last Tuesday we had district meeting. Our new district president Elder Mayo asked us to bring pictures of the people we love the most. He had us put all of them up front for everyone to see then proceeded to talk about how when we teach we should teach each person like they were one of those people int he pictures. Because really we are all brothers and sisters. Just because we don't speak the same language or we come from different places doesn't change the truth of us all being brothers and sisters. That hit me pretty hard. I thought about it all week and have been trying to look at people in a different way. What if it was my family that didnt have the gospel? I sincerely have been trying to apply that. When you have love for a person you are teaching you want so much for that person to understand, you want them to have the happiness you have. STreet contacting has not been something that i have really loved. But After that lesson I have looked at it with different eyes. It is still not something that is easy for me but I am trying. THen yesterday at Zone Conference Soeur Carter said to us "it is better to try to talk to someone and have them reject you than to not have tried at all and ignore the spirit." I thought that was pretty cool. I loved all of zone conference. It is like a half time pep talk from the coach. AFter you leave you feel like you can take over the world, that nothing is going to stop you. On the train coming back to Nice last night soeur Bitanga and I were with Elder Mayo and Elder Miller We talked a lot about random things but it was like a wall that was between Soeur Bitanga and I came down. really for the past two weeks we haven't talked all that much. But when we got home thing were different we were talking and things were just different. I don't know how to explain it. It was really cool. I am excited for this next week to keep working. President Carter yesterday talked about attitudes and motivation. They go hand in hand. Attitude is really all a matter of choice. If you want to have a good day you have to decide that you are going to have a good day. then when things go wrong or things are hard during the day you have already made the choice that it was going to be a good day and thos things aren't going to stop you. Life really is 10% what happens and 90% how we react. Soeur Carter had talked to us to about how we can creat things in our life. How we can create joy specifically. It is the same principle that if you want something you have create it you cant wish for it to come to you.

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

June 29, 2009

I have to say that changing companions is not something that is easy. it has been an interesting week for me. I am very glad to still be in Nice. i love it here and I love our amis and the ward here. My new comanion is French, this is her first time being a senior companion. She has been out for about 6 months, so neither of us really know the role of senior compaion. I'm glad its her not me. I think Ihave spoken more French this week than I did the whole time with Soeur Mongas. THere have been many times I've opened my mouth not knowing exactly what to say or how to say it but it came out in a way that was understood. Heavenly Father has really helped me this week. On wednesday we had our meeting with the ward missionaries since soeur Bitanga is new and doesn't know our amis I had to talk about each of our amis. I prayed that I could atleast get my point across. I struggled and went slow but when I had finally finished with the last amis Frere Feuga said that I made sense and that I'm really improving. That compliment made my whole day. We did a lot of walking this week. I realized how much I didn't know about the city. but it is all good. We have been trying to pass by inactive members houses this week we have a ward list that is 18 pages long and i would dare say that I haven't even met half of the people on the list. SO in effort to help strengthen the ward we are trying to find the lost sheep. I am grateful we walk a lot because really 30 minutes really isn't much for exercise. Incase you want to knoz a typical day goes as follows: 6:30 wake up pray exercise. 7 get ready for the day8 is personal study. I love personal study. I have finally found what works best for me and how I can get the most out of that hour. That hour of study can make or break my whole day. 9 Is companion study at first I didn't like comp study but really it is the best hour to prepare to our lessons and contacting, and to talk about our amis. 10 Is an hour for French Study. honestly that hour is hard for me by the time i sit for that long I have no desire left to study. but it really is a good time to look up new words and how to conjugate verbs and just practice speaking and reading. From 11 until 9 is prosyleting time. each day is different. some days we have rendez vous all day long and other days we are contacting and passing by peoples houses all day long. needless to say there is always something to do. then at 9 we return and plan for the next day eat and go to bed. There you have it in a nutshell. We are very lucky to have a lot of support from the ward they love to help and love to wteach with us!One miracle for the week. Anastacio has been progressing and doing most everything we commit him to do. But he hasn't been to church for a couple of weeks he kept saying he would come but then Sunday morning would come and he wouldn't be there. well this sunday we were about to start Relief Society I walked out in to the hall and guess who was there? Anastacio§ i was so excited! It was so cool! I do get to plaly the piano a little bit. Soeur mongas played most of the time last transfer but now I get to. We have 2 young men in the Ward that play very well that is what they study at school and lets just say that I dream of playing as well as they do. I hope you have a great week! I love you! THanks for your love and support.Until next time!Soeur Jenni Lake

Sunday, June 28, 2009

Pictures from France

Baptism of Violette & Marc
Jenni's very first Saturday in Nice and first Baptism
Sisters L-R - Soeur Lake (Jen), Soeur Mongas (her companion) & Violette
Men L-R - Elder Swanson, Frere Meunier, Frere Pietri, Marc, Elder Miller, Elder Mayo & Elder Suppan
This is the view from Jen's apartment window in Nice
This is our French Baker making a cake from scratch

We received these pictures this last week. Tonight I received a call from a Sister Steenblik from the Salt Lake area, she and her husband have just returned from France from a vacation. Brother Steenblik served in Toulouse France many years ago and they had finally made a trip there. They attended church in the ward where Jenni is serving and they called to report that she is happy and healthy and doing well.

Monday, June 22, 2009

June 22, 2009

As for the weather you could send some of that rain here I would love it! It is getting very hot! I don't know exact temperature but i do know that in our apartment when i went to bed last night my alarm clock said it was 81. For the most part it is just hot right now. The humidity is something else. i feel like i have this oily nastyness all the time on my skin. At night it does cool off a little. And during the day it is always a belssing when the wind of the sea is blowing. I am my mothers child i hate it when my feet are hot Soeur Mongas just laughs when the first thing I do when we come in is take off my shoes. The heat doesn't stop the work. We continue and work and work some more.
I have to tell I had the coolest experince this last week. In the time that i have been here I have witnessed 6 baptism's, 2 children and 4 converts. By far the baptism on Saturday was the best one. His name is John. He met Angilque ( a memeber in our ward) sometime ago. and Through Angie's example started taking the discussion. I haven't had the chance to participate in teaching him but we have had dinner with them a few times. John has been a great help for me and ever so patience to talk wih me. So the baptism the spirit was so strong during the program, then as I saw him walk into the font and Elder Mayo baptize him the spirit was so strong again. It is the nbest feeling to know the conversion story of someone and watch as they make their first covenants with our Heavenly Father. Then while we were waiting for them to get dressed. We sang "Je suis enfants de Dieu" (I am a child of God) I was thinking about the words to the song. Literally we are all children of God. And that he will lead and guide me if I let him. He walks beside each of us. What a great knowledge that is. I am so grateful that he sent me to you, my family. And that we are an eternal family.

Monday, June 15, 2009

June 15, 2009

SO last Sunday we had a dinner appointment with a member. She told us that one of the older ladies in the ward was saying to people that she didn't think I could speak french. It really bothered me especially because I had never talked to this particular sister before. So as I thought about it this week I decided to make a point to talk to her on Sunday just to prove to her that I could speak some French. I know a little prideful but It made me mad that she was spreading rumors and she had never even talked with me before..... so anyway yesterday right after church we had another ward picnic. This time because the Bishops daughter was being baptized. Lets just say the bishop really knows how to feed people. but during the lunch I went and talked with the sweet sister. She was baptized 47 years ago and helped build the chappel here in Nice. Her name is Soeur Carbonne I think that is how you spell it. Now she knows that I can kind of speak french....
As for the work it is going well. All day we are teaching. One miracle for the week was Wilfried. He is a student here, 25 and just starting his finals. Soeur Mongas has been trying to call him for 3 months now and he hasn't responded that was until Monday night he called her back and wanted to see us. he had been taught by some sisters before but didn't have the time to continue to be taught. We got to meet him and start teaching him. He is amazing. He has such a strong faith in Christ. He is very humble and receptive to the spirit and the gospel, and to make it even better he came to church! without an hesitation he was like ya I will be there on Sunday.
I don't know if i told you about Rossni or not but she is a student as well. She has been progressing really well until a couple of weeks ago when we asked her if she would be baptized and she wanted to but she needed to talk with the Mom first. For three weeks we prayed and encouraged her finally she did it!! Her mom gave her the go ahead!! so we will see what happens when we meet with her tomorrow.
I can Everything else is going good. like everyone I have my good and bad days. I continue to see the power of the gift of tongues in just little ways each day. Heavenly Father Provides for his servants.

June 8, 2009

This has been a weird week. We had a "bleu's conference"(conference for all the missionaries that got here the same day as I did) at President's on Wednesday. so tuesday night Soeur Mongas and I went and said with the sisters in the next city. She stayed there while me and Soeur Call went to Toulouse. it was an early morning. the train was supposed to leave at 615am. Soeur call and I were sitting on the Train and they made an announcement that we didn't really understand we got the jist that the train was being delayed for 2 hours. SOmeone farther down the track had jumped infront of the train. No trains were coming or going. That was an interesting couple of hours we had to figure out how to work the payphone because they don't take change you have to buy a special card for them. It was quite comical. The rest of the day was amazing. It was really good to be back with my friends from the MTC. We had so much f un sharing stories. WHen we finally got to Toulouse Soeur CArter had made us an amazing lunch!!! We got some great counsel from President and played a french game. President is awesome! Needless to say felt revived and ready to take on the world. The days are kind of blending together. I can't remember what happens which day. But I love it! We have had some awesome lessons this week. Anastacio continues to progress. I don't know if I told you this but he loves to cook for us. and he is a really good cook! It is a good thing that we walk a lot. This week has really been a testimony builder for me of the importance of the plan of Salvation. We have two new amis that are Jehovah's Witness couple. They are very interesting to teach. Their doctrines are so messed up. I don't get it at all. It is so mentally exhausting. I loved fast and testimony meeting yesterday. THere is one language in the gospel everyone understands and that is the language of the spirit. there is such power in someone's simple testimony. there were many that I didn't understand with my mind but with my heart i kenw exactly what they were saying! It was an absolutely amazing feeling. They do a big lunch after the block. It was pretty fun. everyone Brings something and they have a picnic of sorts. Today we went to Monaco! It was so pretty there. It is a very clean city. We went with some of the elders in our zone. they all went to an aquarium but soeur Mongas and I wandered around this really cool garden and were just outside. For me that was perfect. We were really close to the sea and could hear the waves crashing against the rocks. The Our bishop has a restaurant in Monaco so we decided to stop in and see if he was there. He wasn't but his wife was and she gave us lunch. I had a calzone!!! when I say a calzone it was huge and tased absolutely amazing!! Deb could take some serious lessons. I couldn't eat it all. then she gave us dessert! Basically she gave us a 20 euro meal for free. She is amazing! the Members here are awesome. THey love to feed the missionaries and are always willing to come teach with us. So in answer to someone's question I love the food! I do have to say that some of the cheese is nasty. I love the nutella, and the bread. I do have to say that miss my peanutbutter. They don't have it here and the french people think it is disgusting.

Monday, June 1, 2009

June 1, 2009

This is from todays email from Jenni:

This week has been a good week. I can't believe how fast it went. I have realized how blessed I have been my whole life to live in Utah with so many members and so many temples. Soeur Mongas and I have taught about temples a coulpe times this week the picture we use is a picture of the Salt Lake temple. For the saints here it is mearly a dream to one day go there. Not even to go in but to just see the Salt Lake Temple. We were talking one morning about temples in general and Soeur Mongas Explained that the saints here dream of the day that they will have a temple in France. FOr them they have to travel 7-10 hours to get to the nearest temple. They go for a week and do work every day for that week. I was thinking how at home there are 10-12 temples within a 7 hour drive. Because they are so close we don't realize what a great blessing it is. I will forever be grateful to have the temples close. French is still coming. Each day I understand something new. I finally figured out that if I write it down what I want to say I remenber it better.We continue to teach Anistacio he is progressing really well. I can't remember exactly what it was we were going to teach him the other day but that morning I practiced and wrote down what I wanted to share. Throughout the day i continued to run through it in my mind. When we finally got to his house and started teaching I was able to say what I needed to. It was pretty smooth coming out of my mouth. i know that Heavenly Father was helping me. I realized after taht lesson too how much you grow to love a person that you pray for and study for. You can't really help but love them. I realized that night that it is possible to love people that you don't understand and have know only for a short time. So I have to explain a little about Nice. Everyone here lives in apartments. the first floor of most apartments is usually little shops. These shops are so cool. Above these is apartment 5-7 stories of apartments. there is no such thing as a house here in the city. when you go farther out there are some. So that has been really weird. Our house is a mansion compared to these apartments. I laugh because most of our amis live on the top floor too so if there is no elevator we walk a lot of stairs :) and to get into the buildings it is like on the movies you have to find the name of the person and then push the call button to call up to their apartment to see if they are home. Its so crazy. Another thing I love is each morning along the sides of the road there is basically a farmers market. Everyone is selling their fruits, veggies, or flowers. They set up around 8 in the morning and take down around noon or 1. It really is the coolest thing. Mom you would love it! Most people will go down and buy only what they are going to eat for the day. and do that each day. Things are still going well. I love you! the work is going well I can't complain. I pray that I am doing the best i can each day.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

May 26, 2009 Update

This is an update and recap from Jenni's email this week.
So I was thinking a little bit about President Erying Talk a few conferences ago when he talked about looking for the tender mercies of the Lord each day. I've tried to do that and pay special attention to even the little miracles i see. I testify that it works. Right now we have two amis that are really progressing. the first (I can't remember if I told you about any of them last week so if I did sorry) Anistasio he is originally from Portugal he has learned French over the last few years. He is so humble and very prepared for the gospel. We had the chance to teach the plan of Salvation earlier this week during the lesson soeur Mongas talked a lot about baptism. At the end of the lesson he said someting to the effect that little by little he wants to follow, he feels all the things we tell him make sense and are true. The spirit really has touched his heart. Friday and Saturday this last week were fruitless days. all of our appointments cancelled and all of our passby people weren't home either. So we didn't really get anything accomplished. Saturday night during planning we planned Sunday with 5 lessons all with different members and we were also fasting with one of our amis. We prayed that all of our lesson's would go through and that Rossni would get her answer. Sunday morning we got up and went to church. I was really excited because I could enderstand just a little more than I could last week. right after was our first lesson with Rossni. Usually during the lesson she will mostly listen, when ever we would ask a question she would give really short replies and not say much in general. On Sunday we watched part of the Special Witnesses video then Soeur Mongas was talking to her trying to ask quetions to get her to say something. Finally she asked the right question. (don't ask me what it was because i really didn't understand.) She started crying and got up and walked out. We waited a minute then followed. She completely opened up. She admitted she had a testimony and that she knew what we had been teaching was true. It was a really cool experience to see how sometimes it takes asking the right questions and not settling for an easy answer to get someone to talk. The rest of our lessons Sunday worked out. WE were able to find 3 new amis and teach all of our lesson's with a member. Heavenly Father blesses us so much when we give all that we can and do our best. Yesterday was Zone Conference. It was actually combined with another zone so we had to go another town about 3 hours away from here. I can't remember what it is called. We had to catch our train at 6am meaning getting up at 4:30. so really i was up before you had probably gone to bed Sunday night. Crazy! I was so tired. On our way there I stared to have this mental struggle. Satan knew i was tired and he worke don me the whole way there. I started to feel so insecure with speaking and understanding French. We were traveling into another city that I wasn't familiar with, I started to think about home and my family it was just a bad struggle. When the conference finally started i treid to push it all aside and focus on what President and Soeur Carter were teaching. It kind of worked. But then after lunch I had a total break down and started crying. You know how I get when I get really tired and stressed. I felt so dumb. but after crying for awhile I felt better. The spirit really touched my heart and by the time we left the conference I was feeling so much better. Even today I have felt that I can do this there is no way Satan can talk be into giving up. no matter how hard it gets. I love this work. I'm trying to Love FRench and the French people. Heavenly Father is by my side helps me a lot.

Monday, May 18, 2009

First Email from France:)

This is excerpts from Jenni's first letter home and I am leaving them unedited (good luck deciphering what it really says):
So you thought my spelling was bad before you are in for a treat now the French Keyboard is just a little bit different than the a,erican one for example the a and the q button are switched and I cant find the period so this ,ight be one long run on sentence, other than in french the comma is our period,
They took all of us to the Bus station and dropped us off, If you look at a map you will see toulouse is on one side of the country and Nice is clear on the other side, we were on the bus from about 11am until about 830 PM, I got to see so much of the country side and glim^ses of teh cities, Everything is so green and pretty, There were red poppies everywhere, So pretty! > my first day in Nice was not a typical day either the elders had arranged for us to help a member that lives out in monoco do some gardening, It was awesome, I have to tell you first that everywhere we go it is by the tram or the bus, to go to monoco we took the bus, there were 2 other members with us who dont speak french so that was fun to actually speak in english, as we traveled through monoco we were actually on part of the track for the Monte Carlo race, it was really cool to see that, I hope you dont mind you are getting a play by play but it is all so interesting so far i dont know what i can leave out: but anyway,,,That night we had 2 teaching appointments with a member named nelly, the only way I can explain nelly would be to have you picture Aunt Kathy as an active new member, When you picture that you have Nelly She is awesome we teach a lot with her, > French People speak so fast, most of the time i have no idea what they are saying it get frustrating but at the same time i try as hard as i can to listen and figure out what they are talking about: so far in our lessons i will bezar my testimony at the end and that is about it, but ca va, I have been really lucky to be here Soeur Mongas had been teaching a man named Marc and a Woman named Violette who were both baptized on Saturday, So my first week here I witnessed two of Heavenly Fathers children returning to him making covenants with him, That itself was really cool, I was so overwhellmed by the time we left I just started crying, I hadnt understood anything and was so frustrated, I was glad we were going home, Yesterday at church it was better; I pray everywhere we go that i will be able to understand something, and at churhc I did understand so,ethings, still not much, it was funny when the 2nd counselor in the bishopric announced that there were 2 new missionaries in the Area me and an elder Miller, Then he said we would like to have them come and tell a little us where they are from and share their testimony, That was actually fun, It was broken French but it was something that i have parcticed many times and could do!> I am still adjusting to being in such a big city, it is so different than anything i am used to but its all good, Each day I can feel my Heavenly Father leading me and helping me to understand just a little bit more than i did yesterday; Especially during the lessons, that is where i can see his help the most,

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Arrival in France

We received an email from President and Sister Carter today stating that Jenni had arrived safely in France. She has been assigned to Nice. Her p-day's are Monday so watch for updates on Mondays. I am sure when we hear from her we will have an address besides the mission home.

Monday, May 11, 2009

Flying Out!

Today Jenni flies to France. Her flight was scheduled to leave around 4:30 pm this afternoon and she is scheduled to arrive in Paris around 3:00 am (Utah time) where she will go through customs and then fly on to Toulouse. She called home this afternoon and we talked for almost an hour. She is ready to begin a new phase of her mission - she will be an awesome missionary. The next post on this site will be after she arrives in France.

Saturday, May 9, 2009

Pics from Mission!

Here are a few pictures Jenni sent back, they are in no particular order.
I don't know who all these people are, but half of them are her district
Jenni and Elder Zach Garling (he lived in Morgan awhile ago, and was my age)
Jenni and her companion

I thought that this looked fun.
Jenni, Elder Jansen Bennett, and Elder Brad Mead
I just thought this picture was kinda cool.
Snow Angel made in the garden at the temple
Elder making the Snow angel

I thought this was kind fun lookin

San Fransico (where she flew to get her Visa)
Jen and her district
Jen and her district again.
I thought this was a cool picture, and represents what she is doing.
Jenni and her companion Sister Cordner