Well the news is in and I am staying in Dunkerque for Christmas!! Mixed feelings and I don't really know what's going on in my head cause I think I was expecting to leave and so its gonna be interesting!! So in other words, send all the Christmas packages coming my way!! I can't wait to get them:)
Elder Tanner Libby
150 Quai Des Anglais
so here was my week
so tonight was pretty cool! I don't know if I told you all but President Babin has set the challenge for our mission to have a 40 day fast, a purification fast if you will. He has asked us to pray every hour from 10-10 every day from last Saturday, the 14th of November til Christmas Day and asked us to search for one new investigator a day. He told us that as we are worthy, willing and ready to recieve these new investigators that we would get them! And so that has been our goal! We are going to get 40 new investigators! So after we had finished emailing and eating today, we changed and headed out to do some major searching. We went to an area that I wasn't to familiar with and went deep into the neighborhood and started knocking doors. The second door we knocked was a lady named Frédérique. She was very happy to see 2 missionaries outside her house. She let us pray with her and asked which church we were from, and we gladly told her l'Eglise de Jesus-Christ des Saints des Derniers Jours (the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints) and then told her we are sometimes known as Mormons and she goes OH! I know your church! I had a friend who used to be president of the branch in Dunkerque! And told us her friend was one of the old branch presidents. (He's dead now. So I have no idea who he is) she told us that seeing us tonight brought her peace and she said that that is what she needed in a time like now. She asked us to come back again and took our number to fix something for next week. It was a miracle!! We were also let in to pray with another lady who told us she was in charge of arranging the hymn books for her Catholic ward in Dunkerque;) lets just say she wasn't quite ready for the gospel quite yet! But she was nice we'll try to stop by another time. It was a great night of porting! We ended the night with a little spiritual thought with Jean Paul. He gave me a Christmas card tonight that KILLED me. And he told me he received a call this morning from Heavenly Father telling him I wouldn't be leaving Dunkerque this transfer;) he's a funny old man!!
Today was a good day. President and Soeur Duez told us that they weren't going to be at church this Sunday because of a meeting and so they invited us over for lunch cause we didn't know if I'd be getting transferred or not so they invited us over to eat. We ate REALLY well and had a fun time! We went to President and Soeur Duez's house for lunch and I am going to tell you something here and now. MOM AND GRANDMA FOOD IS THE BEST KIND OF FOOD ON THE PLANET. There is not a ton more that I miss than some of my mom and grandma's cooking! 🤗 but I can wait another little bit for that. Soeur Duez makes some amazing food and we ate well! We had some studies this morning and then had to get up and catch our train out to their house. We had a decent train ride with nothing too crazy but we got out to their house and President Duez came and picked us up at the Gare. As soon as we walked into their house, it REAKED of tartiflette! And my stomach almost screamed for joy. Someone should go to Costco in America and tell me if they have the cheese 'Reblochon' or 'Tartiflette' because I am going to make it for you all when I get home. Tartiflette is the best French meal. So I was like super happy and Soeur Duez had us sit down and brought us a tartiflette and it may have been the best one that I've tasted since being in France! It was amazing and I ate until my stomach was about to explode haha which isn't a ton with cheese and potatoes! But still I ate as much as I could!! Then for dessert she brought out....THE APPLE AND RASPBERRY CRUMBLE SHE'D MADE JUST A COUPLE WEEKS EARLIER! She said that she knew we loved it and since it might be the last time they saw me she wanted me make it again. Words cannot describe the amount of hate and love I had in my heart at the same time!! I was so happy but my stomach was so mad! No I wasn't mad at all. Just counting my blessings;) after we had eaten we shared a little message for our home teaching and then president Duez took us back. Before I left Soeur Duez gave me a little bisou and she told me to keep in contact on Facebook and so that was cute. And I forgot to ask for a picture:( We mad our way home and once we had gotten home, the ZLs were here for an exchange and so we went with them. I was with elder smith. He's new this transfer and he was nice! We went and tried to stop by a less active but no one was home and so we went porting in his neighborhood and we were let in by this one dude who told us he'd pray but didn't want anything more...so that was crummy. But we ported a whole street and so that was good! Then we came home and ate and played some monopoly deal #bestgameever
Today was pretty cool! The Lord prepares souls. That is for certain! But to make matters better, I finished off my second journal tonight!! I haven't missed one day of writing in my journal from day one and I am currently starting my second journal. I have truly gained a love for record keeping and because of it, I have decided to try and write a little bit in my journal every night for the rest of my life. So I hope that that works out. Going back and reading what was up is a lot of fun! So this morning we woke up and had our studies and then sent the ZLs off and then went and did some contacting. We were just walking around talking to people and stopped this one man and we were talking to him and he all of the sudden goes, 'why me? How did you know to stop me? I just left the church praying asking God for help and direction and you just stopped me. How did you know to stop me and not someone else?' #godanswersprayers!! We were talking and fixed a rdv for tomorrow! It was a really neat experience! Then we went and finished up contacting and then came in and took a lunch break. After we had finished we went and had our rdv with Mike. We taught Mike about the creation and gave him a gospel principles book and told him that we were just going to teach him out of that from now on. It went really well. He's a fun kid. Then we decided to go out and try to get some passbacks that we had and so we went out and tried to get them and none of them were home so since we had nothing better to do, we just went porting! We knocked and we knocked and we knocked again and people were telling us no. But the whole time we were porting (WARNING!!! This next sentence is going to sound super missionary and not 'Tanner' like at all!!!) we were talking about how much we are realizing the power of the gospel in our lives and how really the only desire we had was to end up in the celestial kingdom with our families. I hope I make it someday! Cause I'm just starting to realize how much I want it and how great it is going to be. Sorry. I know. I'm pretty surprised too. so I had this idea in mind the whole time we were porting and we got to this road and we both thought we'd already done it, but we weren't sure. So we just went and knocked. And on one house that we were ALMOST sure we'd knocked before, we knocked and the husband answered. And as he answered, his wife pulled up in the driveway in her car. As we asked if we could pray he stood there with a smile and was speechless. As his wife came up he explained that we wanted to pray and they both finally said why not. So we went inside and we prayed and talked a little bit and then they agreed to have us come back! The crazy thing?? Many people in this neighborhood had told us they'd seen the Mormons porting there before, but these 2? They've lived there for 25 years, 5 minutes away from the church building, AND HAD NEVER SEEN OR HEARD OF MORMONS BEFORE! They told us that many times, they'd turned the Jehovahs Witnesses away, but they'd never seen us! It was a miracle! So we fixed another day to come back and see them and left them with huge smiles on their faces!! It was amazing! The spirit works in amazing ways. His presence makes us happy and I'm grateful for that! Then we went and got some drinks at the store and because of the great winds and tumultuous rain we decided to call it a night for work outside and end the night with making some calls.
Today was kind of a rough day...it was cold and wet and rainy all day and doing the work was just a little sad. I know...#complainer but we did it anyway and we did it with a smile. No matter how wet or cold or tired we were! And the Lord put those blessings right in our path! So this morning we got up and had studies and yesterday the ZLs told us that the rules for studies had changed and that from now on we were supposed to be out of the apartment at 10. And so we left the apartment and made our way out to contact. We first made our way to the gare to print off some train tickets and then we went around and contacted, for what seemed like hours! But we did it and the last person we talked to invited us to come to his house. He let us in and discussed with us for a little bit. It was an interesting discussion and I don't know if he will become a legit investigator, but we shall see! He told us a lot about how his sister had told him not to talk to us and how he lets the homeless people sleep in his house and how he had been to an evangelical church before...so we'll see! Those crazies are all around us! ;) then we went home for lunch a and after we went to go meet up with our miracle from yesterday! We went and got to the meeting spot and waited, and waited, and waited some more...and sadly he never showed up:( and the sad thing was that he didn't have a phone number and so we couldn't even call him. So we left the area after a half hour of waiting and we were just a little bummed. But we went out to an area where we had received a referral from a less active member and so we went and talked to her and she told us that we were nice but that it wasn't necessary....so we were already in the apartment building and so what did we do?? We knocked all the doors! We went knocking and talked to some nice people but nothing really. These two Arab women let us in to pray with them but didn't want anything more so instead of insisting we just left our card in their mailbox. Then we had to get going so that we could try to stop by some pass backs. We got to their houses and they weren't home...but we were in the same neighborhood as a less active and so we went and stopped by his house! He let us in and talked with us for an hour or so and we shared a little message to get that home teaching done. After that we had received a call from Jean Paul and he was asking if we could come over to his house tomorrow night, but tomorrow night was really full for us and so we asked we could come now and he said yes. So off we went;) we just sang some hymns and he shared a little thought from what he read in the scriptures this morning.
We woke up this morning and headed out the door to make it to district meeting on time! We got into Calais and had to go into the store to buy some baguettes OH OH OH NOUS SOMMES FRANÇAIS (oh, oh, oh, we are French!)! Haha after that we headed to the chapel and had a great district meeting that was based on fear. It was great and I learned a lot. We then took some pictures and then ate. After we had eaten we had to leave and catch the train back to Dunkerque. On the train ride home l had to go to the bathroom and so I went to the bathroom and as I opened the door, there was this 12 year old in there just sitting on the toilet and he freaked out!! Haha he took the door and slammed it shut and I just laughed! I know I'm terrible and rude but it was so funny! Once we got back, we went out and tried to contact some of our pass backs from a few nights ago but none of them answered. So we finished up the area and got all the houses done and then decided that since we had some home teaching that we needed to get done, we'd go out and get that finished. So we made our way to a members house to teach her and she told us her life story me we found out that she was the oldest member in the Dunkerque branch and she had a crazy story. But she is super nice! Then we made our way over to Mado's house for a little rdv and we read in the scriptures about charity and let's just say she knows she has need of improvement haha but don't we all?? Becoming Christlike takes some time. Then we went in for the night and called some other elders to do some TRANSFER PROPHECIES!
well we started out the day studying and I tried my hardest to stay on topic...my brain goes all over when I'm expecting something! Haha so after studies, we went and did some contacting and taught some interesting people and tried to stop by this one dudes house from the other day and he told us he couldn't see us right now but that he'd call us soon to be able to fix something so we could get together. So after he'd finished we headed over to macdo to get some lunch and then headed over to Jean Paul's to look at transfers! He was SO happy when he found out I was staying. He told me 'Père Céleste m'a appelé ce matin et il m'a dit que vous restiez! Je le savais!' "Heavenly Father called me this morning and told me that you stay! I knew it!" Lol he kills me. Staying for a fourth transfer in Dunkerque will be good for me. I was kind of expecting to leave and so it was weird for me to see that I'd be staying. But I'm ready to finish what the lord needs me to do here. And with the miracles that we saw this week, I'm super excited to be here!! Plus we are having thanksgiving as a branch on Thursday! So that will be good:) why don't the French have thanksgiving?? They sure do love it hahah. After we finished looking at the transfers and eating we headed out to the less actives house that has been hospitalized in her house for a long time. We go see her every Saturday and she likes our visits and so we'll see if, when she is able to move again and get out of her house, she'll come to church or not. It will be interesting. We shared the little video about continuing in patience and she commented, as does everyone, on the cute little girl that gets the 2nd marshmallow in the end haha she told us that that is what she's had to do with this whole hospitalization. She said that it really has been a test of her patience. So it went well. On the way home it began to POUR rain and hail hahah it was great. So we decided to go in for the night and weekly plan and make calls. The wind was blowing and the rain just wouldn't stop! I kept thinking to myself 'Master! The tempest is raging! Linger, oh blessed Redeemer, and leave me alone no more' it's crazy to me how much the scriptures and hymns can relate to our daily lives today! So after we had finished planning we had a rdv and had to go out in the tempest! And I then thought 'carest thou not that we parish? How canst thou lie asleep?' Haha no I'm kidding but I may have complained a little in having to go out in the tempest...we went and waited and sadly he never showed up...so on the way home elder Sorensen stopped and bought a pizza from dominos!
well today went well! Remember how last week we found that one lady from Romania and she didn't speak a whole ton of French?? Her and her husband came to church today!! They couldn't stay for sacrament but they came and we taught them during Sunday school cause right now we are in the middle of revelations and it is CoNfUsInG...just imagine trying to have to learn it in French....OH LA LA. So that went well and they told us that they wanted to come back next week! So that was a tiny miracle in itself! At the beginning of church all the members came up to me asking if I was leaving haha it was cute to see their little anticipation, and it made me feel special when the cry for joy was when they found out I WASN'T leaving! I was a little scared it might have been the other way around. During priesthood we talked about the talk from Neil L Andersen 'Thy Kingdom Come' and talked about the second coming of Christ and it went well. Then we taught our Romanian friends and then we had sacrament meeting where I had to give a talk because they all thought I would be leaving. I was asked to seek inspiration on what to talk about and ended up using my moms talk from my grandpas funeral on how to live a 'Jolley' life. It went well haha it's just had to translate and I don't know if I will be doing that in the near future;) hahah after meetings Mike, our recent convert, had expressed how he wanted to have general conference and the DVDs that we had made for him didn't work. And so we put all of the conferences on an SD card instead. After that we headed home and ate lunch and finished weekly planning and then we had to go and catch a bus to make it to St Omer for the night cause we were going to be spending the night to hang out with them for PDAY! And so when we got in for the night we partied. It was fun!
Well start sending all the Christmas goodies! I can't wait to hear from you all! Christmas in Dunkerque will be interesting...it's gonna get cold!! I love you all and hope you have a great week!