Monday, February 1, 2016

Sometimes, it pays to be an assistant

Bonjour y'all!

So good to hear your thoughts, news, and comments! It seems like things just keep on moving down there, I can't believe it's already February. Kaitlyn, I hope you are enjoying your experience with your wisdom teeth :)) - I really wish I could have been there to see you in your drugged up state, haha. And Ryan needs to quit thinkin he's hot stuff just because he's growin- he's forgotten what it's like to have a big brother there constantly to keep him in his place. Don't worry bud, I'll be back. Enjoy it while you can.

As for our week- well, it started and basically ended with Zone Conferences, haha. We went up to Quebec City on Tuesday (or the "Nation's Capital" as people like to say here)- it was pretty sweet. It's got a bit more of a European feel in some parts. We drove up there and gave the team in Alma our Equinox, so we got to drive their Colorado truck back down from the conference because we traded it in for our own new 2016 Rogue! So sweet! The conference went great! I got to talk to the missionaries from Sherbrooke as well as the Petersens, which is always a pleasure so I was definitely happy. I also got to see Elder Lloyd and Elder Hattaway- we ended up going out to eat dinner before heading back to Montreal that night in the winter storm (which was fun, lemme tell ya.) We stopped at this giant mall to get food where they had an indoor skating rink, roller coaster, and Ferris wheel- yeah, ridiculous. It was pretty cool to see. And I actually got to see an actual Zamboni in real life! Crazy...

The other two conferences were great as well! And we ended the week on Friday with a great mission leadership council. We have some new changes coming to the way we do transfers as well as the way we conduct exchanges with other missionaries, so that clearly put some excitement into things this time. It'll be interesting to see how it all pans out. Basically with exchanges, both missionaries will be transferring into the leaders' area- so basically we will be receiving both zone leaders in our area for an exchange. It's like blitzing areas now. Along with all of that we had some transfer planning and some last minute things to take care of before this week so needless to say, we have been pretty exhausted all week.

But then the weekend came... SYLVAIN GOT BAPTIZED!!! We got to go to his baptism in Lasalle which was such a great experience! Elder Pinkham baptized him (I was beaming with pride for the both of them). It was awesome to be able to see things finally come together after a lot of hard work! Even his friend, Oliver, got to come- we got to know him pretty well too back when I was in Lasalle. It seemed like the experience really touched him. Not only that, but we had a HUGE miracle on Saturday as we were out with a member and went to go teach this guy named Gregoire from Benin (in Africa) that we had met just the other day. When we first met him, he said he would talk to his family and some friends about us coming over. When we show up- we could hear a ton of noise and when we walk in it was Gregoire and his wife and four kids as well as his friend, Charles, with his wife and 3 kids. 11 people! Plus they were all from Africa! We all crowded around and sat on the ground as we shared a little bit about our message. It was just a super powerful lesson as the spirit was there, everyone was attentive and they were are super open. When we talked about the Book of Mormon they all read from it and passed it around like it was something so precious- it was super cool and the little 10 year old daughter of Charles even started crying when she read out of it. It was a super awesome experience and one of the most beautiful ones I have had on my mission up until this point. Incredible. We are working with them in helping them move towards baptism now that they are all committed to it. It was pretty sweet. Along with that, last night, we went to go eat with Frank and Majorie at their place and it turned out that they had some exchange students staying at their place who were from China and Taiwan. Ping, Porshe, and Howard. So funny! We had a great dinner with them and talked to them about the basics of who is Jesus Christ. It's always super humbling to talk to people that don't have any sort of Christian background or even a slight concept of it. They were a lot of fun to talk to and we ended up taking pictures together before they leave tomorrow for Toronto.

Also, we did indeed have transfers. Elder Brooks is leaving, and I am receiving Elder Caine, my old South African friend from Ile de Moise. We are stoked! Transfers are always exciting and we are looking forward to what the next few months will bring. Along with that, one of my branch councilors who served in the MTC when I was there is coming to this mission with his wife as a senior couple this week. That'll be fun to see them again! We'll see if they remember us!

That's basically been our week! I will do my best to try and get that picture, mom. No promises though! Thanks again for the amour et soutien ya'll! Have a merveilleuse week!

Love,

Elder Cody Warren Ritz

Dragon Fruit

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