WEIRDEST AND MOST WONDERFUL WEEK!Wow this week has been absolutely crazy.. But to be honest, it has
been one of the coolest weeks on my mission. I'll try my best to get
all the details in.. Long story short, we met Linda K Burton and we
now have a super ami, Gabriel! I'll start off with my favorite
So this all started on the very first day of the transfer. Elder Hutch
and another missionary were shopping in the mall (it was Pday and
their very last day in the mission). This guy contacted them in
English! He said he knew the missionaries in Toulouse, and he'd like
to see them again! So Elder Hutch passed his name and info over to me.
We were completely busy the first week, but we called him this last
Sunday and set a rendezvous.
His name is Gabriel! He's 20 and from Nigeria. We teach him in
English! We had our first rdv with him at his apartment; he has been
in Lyon for about 3 weeks now. We had a simple lesson on our role as
missionaries and what we do. And we talked about the plan of
salvation! He told us about how he was doing things that he knew
weren't good, and so now he really wants to change. So we said we're
here to help him out! He was super happy and excited. We left the rdv
excited and had planned for another one on Thursday.
Thursday we took him to the institute and gave him a tour of it! We
saw a cool miracle with him that night.. I'll explain in a second.
|Bellacour part of our Sector|
MY PATHWAY TO TEMPLE BLESSINGS
Thursday morning was zone training. We talked about a lot of good
stuff, (such as business contacting! That'll be cool) and we talked
about the temple. They introduced these little trifold pamphlets
called my pathway to temple blessings. Basically it just shows us what
e need to do to receive temple blessings! It has a little pathway that
starts with baptism and leads up to the temple. At zone training, our
zone leaders were like "we don't have the pamphlets in French yet, but
you can have this one in English for practice!" And at the time we
were like "okay cool."
Later that evening we had a rdv with Gabriel! Like I said, we gave a
tour of the institute and then taught a lesson. We were talking about
eternal life, and out of no where he was like "can people that have
died still get baptized?" So Acheson and I thought for a second, and
remembered the trifold we had received that day! We pulled that
straight out. Again Gabriel is a native English speaker, so it was a
miracle for us cause we only had it in English! We were able to talk
about the temple and baptisms for the dead. He thought that was super
cool and he really enjoyed it! We talked about how amazing the temple
is and how that all starts with baptism. We asked him about baptism
and if he wants to be baptized! He told us "yeah of course! I knew
that I want to be baptized even before I met you guys" haha
Afterwards, we played ping pong and he destroyed both of us haha he's
really good. He said if you're from Nigeria and you don't play ping
pong, then you're not Nigerian haha! He's a super humble guy.
We had planned a rdv with him for Saturday night; we wanted to give
him a tour of the chapel. The grenoble elders were with us at the
time, because they were staying at our apartment for stake conference
on Sunday. So we got to the church with Gabriel and the other elders,
but it turns out that we didn't have the code to get into the
building! Haha so it was about 8:30 at night and no one was answering
their phones. So we decided to just do a little spiritual thought
outside! We talked about the power of prayer with him. Gabriel prays
with a really good intent! Listening to his prayers, you can tell he
cares! So it was a nice spiritual moment in this random parking lot in
Sunday was stake conference; we invited our ami Gabriel to come! We
met up with him and went to conference. The conference was held in
this big conference center in Lyon! President Brown and his wife was
there, Elder Homer (he's in the quorum of the seventy) and the stake
president! Gabriel speaks French pretty well, but English is his
native language. Fortunately, Sister Brown, Elder Homer, and Elder
Homer's wife all spoke in English and had translators! After the
meeting, we went and introduced Gabriel to President Brown and Elder
Homer and a bunch of people. Gabriel told us he really enjoyed the
conference! For his first stake conference, he met the stake
president, the mission president, and a member of the seventy! Haha
pretty sick stuff!
Last night, we planned to see him again to actually show him the
chapel. So we met up with him at about 8PM. We were walking to the
chapel and Gabriel was saying how happy he has been today! After
church he had taken a nap, prayed, and read the bible and Book of
Mormon. He called his mom in Nigeria and told her about how he went to
church and all. He said that his mom was super happy about all that!
We taught about the restoration and the Book of Mormon. He's totally
engaged! He was telling us about how much he's already changed. We
didn't know him two weeks ago, but he said he's feeling like a changed
man from just two weeks ago. He's super happy!
Gabriel has become our best friend In just a few days.. I'm super
happy that we have this opportunity to be his friend and to teach him!
We're seeing him tomorrow and we're going to family home evening
together at the institute.. So we're pumped!
LA CONFÉRENCE SURPRISE AVEC LINDA K BURTON
work.. We were doing some moving and work around Geneva and Lausanne!
We needed some keys for certain apartments so we could move stuff
around. All the missionaries in Switzerland were invited to a special
conference with Linda K Burton, the general relief society president!
So on Friday we had to go to Lausanne to get some keys to start moving
stuff around. We show up in the middle of their lunch. Acheson and I
were in our service clothing, because we were planning to grab some
keys and then just head out. We got the keys from the certain
missionaries. Then quickly, the Lausanne zone leader, elder Hladky
from Austria (elder Hladky is one of my really good missionary
friends), was like "hey come over here and meet Linda K Burton" so we
were like "haha sure!" So there we were.. In basketball shorts and t
shirts, meeting Sister Burton.. Haha we had to explain a little bit of
what we did so she could understand. We also met Elder Homer from the
On our way out, I went to say a quick hello to President Brown! He
asked me what our plans were for the day. I said we're just moving
stuff around. He then asked if we would have time to stay for the
conference (Sister Burton and Elder Homer were gonna speak to the
missionaries) I said something like "oh I don't know, we're not exactly
dressed for the occasion." President Brown then told me, "don't give
that a second thought; this is your uniform for your calling. I think
you should stay for this." So of course I accepted haha! After that,
he asked Elder Acheson and I about the work. We told him about our new
ami and how he wants to get baptized. He was super stoked about it!
|Elder Acheson, President and Sister Brown and me!|
So here's where things get good.. All the missionaries, senior couples
(all the senior couples of the mission were invited to come) and
guests went into the chapel. A couple people spoke; Sister Brown
started. President Brown followed! President brown was talking about
unity! During his talk, he was like "Will Elder Steadman and Elder
Acheson come up here please?" Hahah again... We're still in our
basketball shorts and t shirts! He had us come up; he explained to
Sister Burton, Elder Homer, and the other guests about what we do. He
then had us share our story about our new ami Gabriel! We shared it,
and after, President Brown explained that every missionary, no matter
what their calling, takes part in every baptism of this mission. At
one point, he pointed at us and said this mission wouldn't run without
us. So that was cool! Haha it was a nice lift up for us.. Sometimes we
don't feel respect from other missionaries because we don't do as much
missionary work as they do. But I really liked what president said!
Often times, missionaries say "it was my baptism" or stuff like that..
But really we're all one team working for one goal! I loved it.
|Speaking in Zone conference!|
We've been driving around Switzerland and France all the time;
|Fall in Switzerland|
We've been sleeping at other missionaries apartments; my back hurts from
sleeping on bad mattresses or floors in other place (also from
building IKEA furniture); we get less sleep than most other
missionaries; we eat terribly because we're always on the road; we do
physical work from 8am to 9pm, and we carry washing machines up 4
flights of stairs.. but I know that what I'm doing is worth my time!
I'm having so much fun and time is flying for us. I'm super grateful
for our new ami, Gabriel! I know the God loves me and loves him.
Through God, all is possible. I might not have the most normal calling
as a missionary, but the work of the lord is still moving forward! Im
thankful for my friends and family who have helped me get here!
Thank you so much :) I love you all!
|We got to eat some pizza!|