So it's begun. The members have started giving us sweets--we currently have loot from the Harvest Party (Boot or Treat), which they wouldn't take no as an answer, three 5lb tins in the flat of Mars, Bounty, Twix, and Malteasers fun size, and leftovers from all our TAs. Bah, cycling after a TA with a Korean cook is a BAD PLAN.
In the short time Christensen and I have been together, we've picked up four new investigators, a baptismal date, and we're preparing for Holly and Linda's baptisms on Guy Fawkes Day. Linda is 40, deaf, and has a daughter Holly, who's ten and believes in Jesus even though no one else does. She's come to church 6 times now, and she was the star of the Primary Program, even memorizing the words of Praise to the
Who of us adults knows what
"communed" and "extol" mean? Linda is really good at
reading lips, and I'm learning a bit of British Sign Language--the alphabet
calls for both hands to be used for each letter, rather than just one. They are
so excited to be baptized, and their commitment to pay tithing and come to
church forever after is already apparent. Man.
There is a huge Portuguese community here (our mission leader Brother Tiago lives three floors below us) and enough Portuguese members to hold their own sacrament meeting. On Sunday. Robert and David came to church, and we had to teach Gospel principles in English, Portuguese, Polish, and British Sign Language. Talk about intense. But even when we couldn't understand the words, the Spirit was so present. Brother Tiago even blessed the sacrament in Portuguese, and the Spirit still bore witness that the words were acceptable to God. So cool! David is tired of living on Jersey and wants to go back to
and has been wronged by the Catholic church in the past, but he smiled through
the whole Primary Program and declared that it was "beautiful, perfect,
not like Catholic church". Robert was charmed as well, and both were eager
to have us come back and teach them. I'm so grateful that even on posh, posh Poland Jersey, the Spirit still bears powerful witness to help
the work move forward.
Other things about Jersey: We can't cycle everywhere, and mostly stay in St. Saviour,
St. Helier, and
occasionally St.Clement. The church is in St. Mary, and we get a lift every
Sunday. There are no such things as week/month bus passes, or even returns.
It's £1.70 one way, anywhere on the island. Amen. Those tickets really add up.
I was surprised at everyone's pleasant manner during finding--maybe it's
because Christensen is six-foot and could clearly beat them up if they were
rude, I don't know. We did get told the other night to go home and live our
lives because you've only got one, and I was like, "I couldn't agree with
you more." Do it now, or regret that you hadn't.
It's a little ward on Jersey, and really young compared to
. You can really
feel the camaraderie and just silliness, but we're struggling with home and
visiting teaching in the worst way. The bishop has been there 5 or 6 years, and
it's no secret that he's exhausted and ready to be released. I hope that we can
encourage everyone to visit these new converts, because VT and HT are the
lifeblood of the church. I'm thinking to write to the First Presidency and get
it added to the worthiness questions for a temple recommend. Are you doing your
visiting teaching? Maybe that would help things here. (Missionaries aren't
allowed to write the First Presidency, so maybe I'll just bring it up with
President Shamo.) Weymouth
Big news! Steve got baptized in
! He wore the new tie we bought him
and apparently looked very dapper. He is so solid, and so grateful that the
Gospel has entered his life and changed him. I think teaching him really hit
home how the Lord truly does prepare the hearts of his children, and it really
opened my eyes to the before and after that those born into the church only see
from the outside; the life of an addict, compared to the life of an Elder. As
we immerse ourselves in the Gospel, we find we stand stronger and stronger as
the world drifts away, and our thoughts of "if I wasn't a member, what
would my life be like?" get bleaker and darker. It's so cool to watch the
sometimes shocking conversion process because it reminds us that we, despite
our inadequacies, can change just as abruptly when we humble ourselves before
the Lord. It's so cool to be here with Sister Christensen, who's so smart and
as fun as Sister Housley and just makes everyone feel loved and comfortable. I
hope I can develop those qualities and share it with the members here. Weymouth
HEAT WAVE! This is my island in the sun! (Name the movie! Hint: It’s Christmasy)
Thank you for all the post :) I hope I stay through New Year, because fireworks over the water are the BEST!