Monday, May 4, 2015

Il fait beau dehors

Ca va bien vous autres? It's lookin nice and purty down there in Georgia- everything is so green in all of the pictures. Things are finally warming up here, but we are still waiting on those plants to start growin again. This past winter has been one heck of a deep freeze- I've conquered the coldest winter Canada has ever had on record- I'm feeling pretty good about myself. I am looking forward to the skype on Sunday as well! Can't wait to see Loyd's pretty face again...it's been too long. Sounds like this week is gonna be pretty exciting- Kaitlyn is finally graduating...dang. Thanks for the update on all things sports in the ATL as well Andy- I completely forgot about the NFL draft until you emailed me haha. That's kinda sad. Anyway, things are looking good as always down in Georgia and it's good to hear that everyone is doing well. Also, I apologize for not being there to eat the excess of strawberry jam- you could always send me some... if that's possible?

This past week for us has been a busy one- we finally started teaching a whole Colombian family instead of just the father so that was pretty exciting. The lesson was probably about 3/4 Spanish haha. My goal is to come back trilingual. It's crazy how your mind works when learning and speaking a different language. We have had some great experiences in getting members more involved with the work here as well- we have such a strong support from the ward and they have done a great job in supporting the different types of people that want to come to church. We are having on average about 10 investigators at church every week- most of which come from this huge African family haha. Seriously, things are just going great here! We set up a baptismal date with Pierre as well in July so we are excited to help him work towards that. Beatriz is wanting to get her court on the 12 of May out of the way for the custody of her kids before she picks another date, but she is still doing great in working towards that as well. We are seeing a lot of miracles here too as well in regards to the reactivation efforts for less active members.

I also just met a guy in the store when we were shopping just a little bit ago who hiked the entire appalachian trail. He is from here, but 20 years ago he started the trail in Georgia and finished it all the way up in Maine. He was even wearing his shirt from it as well haha. When I told him that I come from La Georgie, he freaked out.

The picture that I took from the temple a while back- the one for which the guy contacted me the other week, apparently it is posted somewhere on the site which talks about the temple reconstruction and my name is cited with it as well. I have had a few people come up to me and talk about how they saw my photo- my photography exploits are starting to make some noise...mama, I'm gettin famous. Speaking of the Montréal Temple...they finally released the dates for the open house, cultural celebration, and the rededication this week. It will be reopening the 24th November. That will be such an exciting time for the people here- seriously, the people here love their temple. It will be great to be a part of that.

Something that always comes up again and again- the importance in being able to recognize the Spirit. I always feel like I am learning so much in regards to that. Helping people recognize it for themselves is one of the most powerful things we can do in helping them in their own process of conversion. In the end, the Spirit does all the work- no matter what aspect of the church you may find yourself in. Christ directs the church through the Spirit. For us, we can`t help people recognize the spirit if we aren't able to recognize it ourselves. That is something that really came up in one of our past lessons this week. I love how in Helaman 5:14, it talks about how in order to teach the commandments to others, they had to live them as well. We can't have power or conviction in what we do if we do not have our own personal witness for ourselves. If we aren't able to recognize these things for ourselves, we will not be able to help others do it either. The great thing is that what we teach to people, is the same thing that we need as well. I am learning so much every day from the people that we teach and I can definitely feel the Lord and his Spirit guiding us throughout this work. I can feel your love and support carry me every day as well. The people of Athens are the best! End of story.

I look forward to seeing y'all over skype this sunday at 4! Au revoir!

-Elder Cody Warren Ritz

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