Monday, December 22, 2014

Mom, I'm sorry, but I've been adopted!

Alright, so really quick- Skype time is at 4:30 this Thursday. I will call directly from our ward mission leader's house. And you are welcome for all the pictures!

Okay, so this week we have spent a lot of time meeting people that I have yet to see in this new area as well as visiting less actives. It is interesting how the dynamics change from area to area. Here, we really are going to be spending a lot of time with less actives and building up the church, as opposed to my last area where we focused on finding. Also, the church out here really relies on a lot of the help from the missionaries: my companion is a counselor in the ward's young men's program, we spend a lot of time helping the Bishop with people, and we translate for the few in the ward that do not speak French because there isn't an English ward here like there was in Longueuil. It is interesting to see the differences in dynamics, but the people here really loooovee their missionaries so I am happy to help.

One of the members in our ward is this old guy from Germany named Hans. He's got a really long story, but apparently his face was used as the model for the guy in the movie UP. Apparently he is going back to California soon for that as well. He's an interesting old dude, he's got a great faith and testimony, and he reallly loves to bake. Some pretty dang good stuff too.

This weekend we went further North to Shawinigan, and it was -18 there... It was such an incredible experience to go up there and meet a ton of MORE new people haha. We went for a baptism of a guy named Jean Louis who was excommunicated. He has a great story, and his parents actually lived in Tennessee for a time while they worked at the Atlanta Temple- HECK YEAH! We went to the Christmas party up there the day before the baptism and just had a great time. I got to meet up with one of my old MTC district Elders as well. We spent the night at their apartment, and his companion is from France too so it was nice to learn more about how to speak French.

As for me getting adopted: Four Elders, Jean Louis, and I went together to visit this old lady they call Mamie. She is absolutely one of the sweetest and youngest spirited ladies I have ever met. She has been adopting elders for over 20 years now. She had sign a book and write down some information including my family members, so yes, y'all are in the book as well. Apparently she writes us on our birthdays and prays for us every day. I am officially her 158th Elder. We sang to her and talked with her for a little bit. She is getting up there in age, but like I said she has such a young spirit- it is amazing to see. She keeps name-tags that Elders give to her on the wall and on the way out I offered her mine. Her reaction was priceless- it absolutely made my Christmas just getting to spend a little bit of time with her.

We also went caroling as a district last night with our ward mission leader. That was a great experience as well and a good way to get out there and reach out to the less actives. We are going to be doing that on Christmas Eve, too.

I Love y'all and can't wait to see everyone in a few days!

Love,

Elder Cody Warren Ritz

Elder Gentillion from my MTC district at the baptism

Mamie's Wall (without my name-tag on it yet)

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