Serving a mission for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in northern France, southern Belgium and Luxembourg.

Monday, May 23, 2016

Sickest week ever

So life here in the middle of Paris is crazy. 
In one week, we went to a giant soirée familiale with all the young single adults in the Paris area, went to the cities of Rouen and Caen for meetings, saw a riot in Rouen on the aforementioned trip, had exchanges in Versailles, brought the Cherbourg elders to Paris for exchanges, got another freaking blood test for this tuberculosis scare, and taught over a dozen lessons...all while I was sick. It's this mega-cold that's lasted for about six days so far, that's made me go through multiple rolls of toilet paper (no missionary apartment invests in Kleenex boxes), gave me a gnarly sinus headache, and allowed me to sing lower than ever before. And it's still here. And I'm not allowed to take certain medicines that help with colds because of the other drugs I'm taking.


In front of the Paris Temple
This is Elder Richards, with whom I live. He is serving Mandarin-speaking and is currently training a new Chinese missionary, Elder Chen. Elder Chen was born in Taiwan and grew up in Montreal, but somehow his first language is English. He speaks French and Chinese too though. 

Elder Richards is just a better human than all the rest of the humans. The man will not let ANYTHING go to waste. I've seen him steam banana peels and pineapple husks and eat them so he didn't have to throw them away. He's vegetarian, takes cold showers, sleeps on the ground, grabs recyclable stuff out of the trash, runs barefoot outside, and picks up litter whenever he sees it here in downtown Paris. 

The other really cool person I have the pleasure of working with is Fr. Keita, from Mali. Over the course of a couple of months since the missionaries contacted him in the street, he has gone from non-practicing Muslim to practicing Christian. He has a baptismal date for June. It's an interesting situation, because we have had to start from the very beginning with him: who the Saviour is, why we needed to be saved, why we call Him the Son of God. Super cool, open guy. He knows that his family in Mali will likely reject him for becoming Christian, but he denies any actual physical danger, so we'll be able to proceed with the baptism when he's ready for it. 

God is there, He answers prayers and His church is again on the earth! Love you all!

Elder Stanford

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