Already another week!! Crazy how fast time goes by. This week went really well. Luckily there were more ups than downs and we made it through alive! We've found some places to go for Christmas so that is good:) keep the packages and letters coming! Nothing beats a full mailbox! And it's gonna be a fun Christmas with all of them.
Elder Tanner Libby
150 Quai Des Anglais
Well here was my week:
well tonight we went home after emails and ate some dinner and then made a few phone calls because for some reason we had a ton of phone calls to make. Then we got all dressed and headed out to go porting. Elder Sorensen is taking the reigns on things in Dunkerque now and so he picked a spot to go porting in and so we went on our way. We knocked tons of doors and tonight was kind of a sad night for porting. We didn't have any discussions with anyone, we just left lots of seeds and hope that someday they'll be found by some others.
today was straight up fun! I had a blast today and made a new best friend! Lol I got to go on an exchange today. We had exchanges with the district leader and I got to go with his new companion who just so happened to be a......BLEU!!!! Now for all of you who don't speak French, ;) bleu is the French way of saying 'GREENIE' so for the day I got to be a trainer and play with a brand new bleu! It was so much fun!! We woke up this morning and went for a run....😑🙄 it was awful....running is of the devil. When we got home we had some studies and then the other dudes got here to start the exchange! Elder Griffith is from Charlotte North Carolina and has a little bit of a southern accent and is just so bleu. I'm trying to describe it but I can't and the best way to describe how he is is to say that it is just so cute haha I love little bleus just trying to be French;) not that I can do it any better! But it's still fun to see it! Plus being with the bleu today just made me realize that I CAN (somewhat) speak French! So after the other two guys left me and elder Griffith planned. We then went to a rdv with the less active who likes us to sing hymns for her and we shared the thought from the ensign this month of making time for the savior from Thomas S Monson and she liked it. Then we went out and contacted for a while and slowly made our way into the apartment for lunch. After eating lunch I realized that I was a terrible 'father' for the day (yes I know, I was having WAY too much fun with a bleu. Maybe I'm baby hungry??! I even named myself his godfather lol) cause I forgot to even set goals for our exchange. So we set some goals and then went out contacting again. Nobody was super interested in talking to us today, I mean we got into a couple good conversations but we just took some time looking today. After a couple hours we decided it would we good if we took a little break to clear our minds, get a drink....you know. All the necessities. So we headed to the church and chilled for a good 20 minutes and then headed back out and contacted til our rdv tonight. We even knocked on a couple doors to try to talk to people. It was good. Then we had a lesson with the less active member from last week. His wife is mostly active and he expressed his desire to quit smoking...remember him?? They kept their engagement to read 1 Nephi 1 as a couple!!!!!! It was great! So we then taught them the restoration cause he told us he wanted to start over and so we taught them all about that and he said that some of it sounded familiar and they told us they would continue to read in the Book of Mormon. And elder Griffith did great! He shared some principles and even bore solid testimony. He's a good bleu;) on the way home he told me he wanted another kebab, which made it even more cute! It reminded me of me as a bleu, just always wanting to eat a kebab!! Haha so we went and got a kebab. It was a great day. We got along great and had the same opinions on tons of stuff that not everyone has the same opinions on haha so we had a great time. I'm hoping to serve around him again or maybe even do another exchange with him!
Well because all good things must come to an end, we had to finish up our exchange today. We woke up and we got ready and had our studies and then made our way out to the gare to catch our train into Calais. On the train ride in I was writing letters and getting all ready to send some off cause #worldsworstpenpal I had so many to write! So when we got into Calais we went and made our way into the elders apartment there and we sat and talked and ate lunch with them until mine and elder Sorensen's train back to Dunkerque left. We got out to our train and made our way home and the whole train ride home, I was writing letters again! Haha I had a ton to write...we got back and made our way to the apartment to do some planning and then left so that we could make our way to a rdv we had with Bruno, an investigator we met like a week ago, remember him?? We made our way to his house and gave him a brief explanation of the plan of salvation and he told us that it made sense to him and that he was ok with understanding all we taught him. So we fixed another rdv with him and made our way out. We stopped by the post office so I could drop a letter off and then went and did some contacting until we had our rdv with Jean Bernard, a less active we work with. He had told us that he was already trying to reduce on cigarettes!! He told us he had been trying to only smoke one every three hours, which is still a lot, but it's better than nothing!! We then taught him the importance of coming to church and shared Moroni 6 with him where it talks about how people in the church come and gather TOGETHER to fast, to pray, and the talk among one another for the well being of their souls. It was a good rdv! He told us he'd be making a better effort at coming to church. We then went home and took a dinner break and somehow got on the topic of scary movies. And funny to admit, cause we all know I'm a scaredy cat, I miss scary movies!! Maybe just the fact that I miss movies??! Idk. But then we went out to meet up with this one potential we'd been trying to see lately but it wasn't working...til tonight! We got him!;) we talked about the restoration but focused on prophets and told him we had a prophet on the earth today and told him about Joseph Smith and he stopped us and told us what a prophet was, 'someone who is CALLED of God, our loving Heavenly Father, who guides us, directs us, and receives the needed revelation for the sons and daughters of God on the earth, to help us in our earthly lives' and then goes onto say that the idea of a prophet makes so much sense and that what we were telling him was true! So I was super stoked!! I know that President Thomas S Monson is a prophet of God and I am so happy to sustain him in his calling as our prophet!!! I thank my God for a prophet!! In the French version of that hymn, We Thank thee O God for a Prophet, there is a line that goes, 'Car pour nous l'Evangile est vie!' Which translated says, 'For us the Gospel is Life!' And that makes so much sense to me. As we sustain the prophet, he helps us in our daily lives because simply, the gospel is our lives! I find that translation somewhat inspired after our rdv with Julien, we headed over to Jean Paul's to sing and share a message. We shared the new Christmas initiative with him made by the church, which is really good! You should all go watch it. Then we went home and made some of that apple raspberry crumble for district meeting tomorrow:) it was a good day!
Today was a good day. We had a lot to do and we got it done. We started off our day by getting out of the apartment to make our train out to Calais for district meeting. We got there and had to chill at the church and wait for everyone else to get there. We then had district meeting and the new ZLs came and so that was weird...I don't know either of them and so it looks like I'll have to be getting used to them with my last transfer here. So we ate and had a good time and then they pulled out the flan...flan is kind of like a mix between jello and pudding and what you do is take it out of the cup and put it on your plate and the goal is to SUCK it all up into your mouth in one fluid motion...we call it the Flan Suck...,it's disgusting and I cannot do it. But everyone else did and so I got some funny videos! we made our way out the door to catch our train back to Dunkerque when a member from the Calais ward stopped us from walking out and offered us a ride! So that was awesome. #blessingsoftherighteous when we got home we came in and got all our stuff and headed out to try and go attack some less actives. It was good! We found the houses of 2 and so we felt pretty accomplished haha sadly none of them were home but we found them and we'll try to go back another time. We were then contacting and we stopped this lady, she told us she was believing and so we were talking to her and she told us she didn't have time to meet with us another time (classic response!) so we just asked her if we could pray and she said yes. So we prayed and after the prayer she looked straight at me and said, 'that prayer brought tears to my eyes.' And she began to weep. She told us that seeing us and talking to us was something she was very grateful for. So we gave her a card and we're hoping for the best with her! We then went to a rdv with that English family that we'd met a few weeks ago! Remember the less active?? It was really good. We got in and hung out and talked with them and they were super nice! The mom had been out of the hospital for a couple of weeks from a recent surgery and she is doing well. We talked with them and when we told them we'd prepared a spiritual message, the kids slowly, one by one, started to sneak out of the room....haha we'll see what happens! After we finished there we went and had a practice round at the Deslypper's house for our Christmas number we will be doing at Christmas! It was good. They had grilled cheese and ice cream for us;) it was a good night.
well there isn't a ton to report on today haha we had kind of a boring day that was filled with weekly planning. I guess the most exciting news of the day is that we finished ALL of weekly planning in one day! I felt pretty good about that. But all in all it was a decent day and we got our weekly planning out of the way...we woke up and went running and YES, I did want to kill myself. Running is of the devil. That crap is for rich people who hate themselves. #NAMETHEMOVIE we got home and had some studies and then went out and did some good old contacting! We went around downtown and at the same time we were going around looking for some less actives that lived around downtown. We didn't see any huge miracles but we did meet this nice lady who took our number and gave us hers who said we could call some other time to go and pray at her house. So that would be cool if that works out! We then contacted our way to the friterie and got some fries for lunch and then headed in for some lunch. After lunch was over we started our weekly planning. Nothing too exciting to report other than we called a member to ask if he'd be available to come help us with a lesson tomorrow and he told us yes...but his response took a half hour on the phone to get;) haha old people LOVE to talk;) so anyway we were challenged by President Babin this week to set some co-companionship leadership goals and so we had to take time to do that also. Then we went out to go contacting and walked a bunch of places and then went in to Mado's house for our rdv. We've been trying really hard lately to get her to church on Sunday's but we can't seem to get her to come. It feels like we've tried everything. We've tried being nice, we've tried being a little rude, and we've even tried bribing her! And it doesn't work. So tonight we decided to guilt trip her into it. LOL we were kind of nervous for the rdv but we went in with a story from dieter f Uchtdorf about the parable of the the dandelions. And we asked her to read it for us and the last sentence when the man walks home and doesn't notice his own dandelions, she started to CRACK up laughing! She told us she knew exactly what we were going to do with this. So we told her and she told us she knew she needed to improve and that she was sorry and she'd come to church this Sunday. So we'll see if it happens! Then we had a rdv with Mike and so we went to our rdv and taught him about faith in Jesus Christ. It went well!
Today was cold!!!! And I was ready to go inside all day haha. It was super cold and cloudy and that made me a little sad...so today Sorensen made me get up and run....and we all know how that was...I *don't* LOVE EXERCISE! So after our run we came back and had some studies and they went well. We then got out of the apartment and went and did some contacting. Trying our best to talk to people about Jesus;) we talked to a few people who were nice but there was nothing too crazy that happened. Then we met up with Frere Price cause he was coming to our rdv with us. So once we got together, we went and taught our investigator named Bruno. He's still kind of iffy for me! But we'll see what happens with him. He told us he would come to church tomorrow so we'll see. We taught him about the creation and the fall of Adam and Eve and he said that it was nothing new he was hearing so I guess you could say that he took it well! Then we went home for lunch and then went to get Jean Paul to head out to see Soeur Alleart, the lady we go see every Saturday. She is doing really well! She learned how to walk up the stairs, and how to get in and out of her car so she's really happy. We shared the December message in the liahona with her and she really liked it cause she is really sad how Christmas had become all about the gifts and everyone had forgotten about Christ. So she was grateful for our message. As we were leaving, Jean Paul had his walker and he fell as we were walking out the driveway he said he was ok but he was limping as we were walking. Keep him in your prayers! We got home and walked Jean Paul to his house and then came in to grab our jackets and then headed out to do some work! We first went and tried to find some less actives cause contacting is always so much easier if you have a destination to go to...if not you are literally just walking around nowhere....but we got to a house and they weren't there and so we were walking away when we contacted this couple who asked if we were Mormons and we started talking to them. They asked if we really believed that Jesus went to the Americas and we said yes haha so that was a fun contact. Then we went and found some more less actives and ended to night with porting. It was a decent day.
today's fast Sunday was great! Fast Sunday is always a good time. I love having a fast and testimony meeting in a small branch like the one here in Dunkerque. Everyone gets up and bears testimony and it's really good. The spirit is there. Plus bearing your testimony while being a missionary is really fun. I feel like there are so many experiences that I can share and I feel like they mean so much more cause they actually involve others! If that makes any sense;) today we got up and out to church and we were a little bit late because 1) the road leading to the church was under construction so the bus couldn't pass by and 2) we were walking with Jean Paul haha so we were just a little late. We had a good lesson on food storage and 72 hour kits for relief society and priesthood today. It made me and elder Sorensen think about how it could really be a good thing if the missionaries all started one in each of the apartments. Just like the teacher said today, 'if you haven't yet started, just start!' So we think we are going to start a little something like that....you know #JUSTINCASE Then we had a good Sunday school lesson on the beatitudes and those are pretty interesting if you think about them. Then testimony meeting. Today I got to bless the sacrament with President Duez and it was super cool. The branch of Dunkerque is super blessed to have the Duez couple here. During sacrament, Jean Paul told me to go bear my testimony, like usual;) so I did. It was a good Sunday. We then went home for lunch and then Miguel had invited a few people over to his house for St Nicolas...which I guess is like an early Christmas of some sort?? It was today and he wanted us to go over. So we went cause we found out from President Babin that we were allowed to go, if we have a member with us. So we went and sang and he had Coke, AND gave me a Christmas present haha he didn't have one for elder Sorensen, but he had one for me lol! It was this little Eiffel Tower candle holder so it's pretty cool I guess. #itpaystobethefavorite after that we went to our rdv with Julien. We taught him all about the Book of Mormon and why it's important and why we have it and gave an explanation on the story behind it and then he accepted a soft baptismal invite! He told us he'd want to be really sure about it and come to know its true before he makes any decisions, but if he found it true he'd be baptized! Then we went porting around his house and someone seemed to be stalking us and was on the phone so we think they were calling the cops on us so we left and contacted back to the apartment. On the way in, we stopped this lady who told us she knew who we were and told us we could pray with her and when I asked if there was anything in specific that she needed help with in life that I could pray for she just looked at me and began to cry....she told us about some family problems going on and how her son-in-law had just passed away from cancer and that it's been hard. I testified of life after death and told her about my experience with my grandpa and how I know he is still living and she told us she wanted to believe it but she just didn't know. It was a tender moment. She let us pray and we gave her our card. I know that there is a life after death and that because of Jesus Christ and his sacrifice for us, we will be with our families after this life! And I find so much happiness in that!
Well thank you all for your love and support! I wish you the best of weeks and hope that you all are enjoying the snow....here it's just cold and windy....I much prefer the snow. Have a good one! Keep the letters and packages coming!!:) love you all