Monday, February 22, 2016

Es Tu Malade?

Why hello tout le monde! Good to talk to y'all again after another week here in Canada full of winter wonders! Mam et Paps, thanks for all the work you are doin for the housing and signups! It's much appreciated! Not too sure how comfortable I am living that close to Alex and Kaitlyn- not sure if they'll be able to handle me... oh well :))

Super exciting to hear about Daeshaun goin to the temple! Super proud of you brutha! Keep up the good work! And good luck to Maddie on her paper process! Keep workin hard y'all- the adversary works hard on the Lord's missionaries.

It seems like everyone is sick over here- this time of year with the constant highs and lows in temperature wreaks havoc on the immune system. Literally like half the mission has been sick in one way or another. Not only that, but a lot of the members as well- like I said, everyone is getting sick around here. But we're stayin strong :))) (knock on wood)

We've seen pretty much every one of the 8 types of snow this week (according to the Inuits) There's the wet snow, the dry snow, the hail/snow, the huge and really clumpy snow, and the melting snow (otherwise know as the "neige fondue" or sleet). It's been an adventure here this past week as things are changing almost every day. This winter has been quite weird compared to last winter which was just bitterly cold.

We also got a chance to go out to Valleyfield again on exchange with the Valleyfield elders after our zone training meeting. I was with elder Evens and Elder Houston- a trio. It was a lot of fun and I always enjoy my time out in Valleyfield! They have some interesting people out there to say the least... someone literally told us that we were "le justin bieber de la théalogie". What does that mean? I dunno, ask me again after my mission. I'll try to explain it to ya.

I also felt like I might share with y'all a fun fact from my last week just to try to illustrate to ya how culturally diverse our weeks are: The meals that we ate late week were as follows...

Monday: African

Tuesday: Taïwanaise (dunno how to spell that in english)

Wednesday: Vietnamese

Thursday: Haitian

Friday: Lebanese

Saturday: Peruvian and Brazilian

Sunday: Canadian/Québecois

It's so interesting to get a taste of different cultures from all over the world. Not only do we get to experience the food, but we learn a lot about traditions, beliefs, etc. It definitely is a challenge sometimes as you have to learn how to adapt to each different culture as some things aren't viewed the same way- especially in speakin the french language, but seriously- I love it all so much.

Basically, I got connections all over the world ;) people are already planning vacation trips for me.

This week in reading through the Book of Mormon- the last two chapters in Mosiah really stood out to me more than ever before. It's not quite so heavy on the doctrinal side of things, but it gives us a beautiful illustration of a significant societal shift as the people of Zarahelma shift from a Monarchie to a Democracy. The "pride cylce" and overall civilization cycle are so well illustrated in those chapters and it's easy to see how all of it applies to us today- especially as we try to live in a society that tries to maintain equality and human rights. I'm not very big on politics, but I find those chapters seriously good reading. Even a system of checks and balances was implemented. It's funny to see how a civilization that existed thousands of years had this all figured out- even before the Magna Carta existed. Yet, "and thus we see" in reading through the history of the Book of Mormon, the eventual downfall of a civilization as they distanced themselves further and further away from God's standards. What a blessing it is that amidst all the societal outbursts and changes that happen, we can find comfort and stability in the Gospel of Jesus Christ. That's the only way to avoid having our feet pulled out from underneath by the shifts in society- God's standards do not change. The doctrine, does not change. The way we apply the doctrine to our lives may change, especially as we implement the principles of what Christ teaches us to fit and meet the needs that we have today- but in the end, the fact that we are all children of a Heavenly Father that loves us and cares for us, never changes. The fact that the family is ordained of God never changes. Look at the Doctrines that we know to be true- they all answer "why" questions. The principles and application answer "what" and "how" questions. If we lose ourselves in trying to spend too much time answering the What and the How questions, we may want to take a little time and try to dig deeper. In the end, a true understanding of the Doctrine will fix any problem faster than any other study or pursuit. We need to seek the Savior, seek to understand his doctrine. As ourselves, "what part of the doctrine is misunderstood" and then seek guidance in trying to find a better understanding. If we find ourselves trying to change or justify changes that WE want to make to the Savior's doctrine, then we find ourselves doing the exact same thing the people in the Ancient Americas tried to do. I love the Book of Mormon. The scriptures are our insight and our compass.

So... READ THE SCRIPTURES Y'ALL! Those are my words of wisdom for the week!

Peace and Love!


Elder Cody Warren Ritz

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