"In the service of the Lord, it is not where you serve but how."
David O. McKay - Teachings of the Presidents of the Church

Friday, August 1, 2014

Sleeping spiritual giant

Ni hao! 

How's it going? Great I suppose! This week was good, just full of service and party planning/party plan realizations and spiritual experiences. 

So last p day, we were on our way to the store to do our shopping for the week, and a really nice older man starts talking to us, turns out he had a pretty crazy story! He is about 70, German but living currently in Tonga and on vacation here alone. When he got here he got super sick from some boat mold and it caused his lung capacity to go down to 29%! Thus, he is not fit enough to fly on an airplane. He explained that he had to pay so many hospital bills and hotel rooms that he was totally out of money. He is not a member, but had been talking with the missionaries in Tonga and assisting church in Tonga with his wife, who is a member. He asked us if we could help him find a place to sleep, so we tried the hospital and some hotels and the hostel but had no luck, and eventually found him a room with one of our very charitable members, the Poisbeau family. He just asked them for one night, but they let him stay for 3! How incredible is that?! So much charity in these members. 

Also we had an awesome branch BBQ! This was the surprise baby that the sisters left us before they left: that we were supposed to plan and throw the party for the branch. Turns out that planning a party is pretty stressful but also pretty worth it! We invited everyone to bring their friends and we actually had a super good turn out! Two really nice families came and they had a really good first exposure to the church. The power of member missionary work is to huge though! Instead of trying to kindle a great relationship that permits a person to feel the Spirit while screaming over cars and construction, you can kindly talk to a friend in the comfort of your own home about something that can change their life and let them realize who they really are. Do you understand the importance/awesomeness?!! The St. Nazaire members are really making some great efforts to do this and its coming along! There is SO much potential here, we just need to unlock it! That'll be the plan for this week, awake the sleeping spiritual giant that is St. Nazaire. 

Make a difference for somebody this week! I love you, talk to you soon! 

Elder Wood 

This week. What even happened this week? I know a lot of hard work happened that's for sure! Before I forget though, 

4 Rue Pierre Mendes-France
44600 ST. Nazaire

Voila my new address! 

This week though we got some exciting news, coming in August/September of 2014..... Ipad's in Western Europe!! What? I never thought I'd be in the mission field when this happened, but it's here everyone, we're getting ipad's. Which means that Sister Wood will probably get one too?! I have no other news than that we have to buy them ourselves, but we also get to keep them after our missions, and that's basically it. I'll probably tell you a little more in weeks to come, when I find out haha. 

Also this morning we went to see a partially submerged retired submarine! That was super cool! The Harris', the missionary couple here, who rock a ton, took us! It was the first submarine to break through the ice in the North Pole, so that's pretty cool! There are a lot of things to do like that here because St. Nazaire was a huge naval base for France in both world wars I believe. I will attach a photo. 

 As far as work, this week was really good and really hard! I love it here and there is so much potential in our branch and just in the city in general, but for some reason I just feel like you have to work a lot harder to keep things going how they need to be! In a couple of instances on my mission I've felt like we were just given blessings and things were relatively easy, but here, it's like I have had to take everything I've learned so far from those successes and experiences and put them to the test. Honestly this week was a challenge! But on Sunday night when you just get to reflect over your week for a minute, it feels really to good to be able to have made even a little difference in the lives of some of Heavenly Father's children. And we did get to make some differences this week.  We taught our ami Y yesterday and he kept saying "This is all the same stuff I've learned in the Catholic church, what was even restored?" From there we just got to talk about everything, what happened to the prophets? The apostles? Why did revelation stop and nobody wrote scripture after the bible? Where are the temples? Why aren't people obedient to commandments anymore? Just tons of stuff to show him that the church is here again! And it was super cool to see him start asking himself questions and being a lot more open and curious. Also we are focusing on less actives this transfer and have seen quite a few of them start coming back to church already! They all have a their own difficulties and everything, but it's such a blessing to see them act in faith to overcome those. Just a ton is going on! And we're going to keep fighting to help everyone have the blessings of the gospel!

I am super happy though and being a missionary gets better and better every day! We've gotta run and do our shopping but I'm stoked to get your letters and I love you guys! Have a missionary experience this week! Bisous au revoir! 

Elder Wood 
  The "swardfish" submarine