This was a week 5 of transfer 13. Week five always seems longer than the other ones.
We started off last Monday by going to Paris for exchanges. Last December, the first Burger King in France opened up in Paris, so BK has been the latest mission craze. Everyone who's anyone has eaten a mythical Double Whopper with fries, and now Elder Oliverson and I can join the crowd. They announced last week that a Burger King is supposed to open up in Lille by the end of the year, and everyone is going crazy. It was the headline on the newspapers when it was announced. Viva America!
Priorities, priorities. I went on my exchange in Versailles with Elder Price, who was also in my MTC district. We went and taught the Restoration to the father of a mega famous French soccer player then went out tracting. We were in the process of being rejected by a man yelling from his porch, when a nicely dressed man walked behind us and said, "Hey, what's up?" Since the first conversation with the porch sitter was going south, we turned around and gave our attention to the English speaker behind us. He ended up being a cool guy in his 20's from England who has been living in France for awhile, and he recently became interested in Christianity. We talked to him for a half hour or so, then went back to the apartment.
We went to district meeting in Versailles the next day and since I was the only one that left last transfer, it was a little district reunion. I got to teach the legendary recent convert Robin with Elder Price afterward, and then Elder Oliverson and I made our way back to Lille. We had an FHE that night with our muscled, Australian ward mission leader, who also gave me a sweet white shirt out of the kindness of his heart. Maybe he was sending a message that I need to go buy some new clothes.
I went on another exchange the next day, but this time with Elder Gee in Valenciennes. We taught some cool African bros and talked to a drunk guy with no teeth who admitted to us that he makes a living from stealing things. We advised him that he should probably find a new hobby, but he didn't understand our reasoning. I guess that's why he's homeless.
And so it was that I took another train back from Valenciennes to Lille in time to once again join up forces with Elder Oliverson and go do some service for a lady in Belgium. We rode up there with a sweet member from the ward, who also happens to own a very nice Jaguar. He sped through the border on the freeway, when we started talking about music. From there, he decided to show us the new 3,000 euro speakers he installed in the car by blasting EFY 2004 down the highway with a decibel level higher than the engines of most military F16s. It was so so fun.
Other than that, we've been teaching "G", a 16 year old high schooler that became interested in learning about the church. He comes to the church during his lunch breaks, and asks for more lessons every week.
We had a nice and relaxing conference weekend in the Lille chapel, and watched most of the sessions in the English room with the 10 other Lille missionaries. All of the recent converts came and enjoyed it, but then we had to eat corn flakes for Sunday dinner at the church since we were out of food for the week.
In between sessions of conference, Elder Oliverson jumped on the bus to pass by a big African family that let us in while tracting through a big apartment building last Sunday. They were there again this Sunday, and they let us in again. They had a bunch of guests over and, in their classic African way, said things along the lines of, "NO WAY! Missionaries! Well, of course we have to let in the men of God! Come pray with us! Come back Thursday and teach us!" Well, if you insist. One of the sweet friends that were over visiting them told us, "Hey, guess what my name is! It's LORD! I'm a good Christian man." See ya next week, guys.
My commitment to you this week is to enjoy your air conditioning just a little bit more while you reflect on how hard your local France Paris missionaries are working away in the French heat of the day. Have a good one,