Lyndi-lou and Eddie too...

Lyndi-lou and Eddie too...

Sunday, September 13, 2015

Feeling the Spirit in Lille

Sunday, September 13, 2015

We'd like to start by saying congratulations to our niece Bryanna who got married yesterday to Clayton in Lethbridge.  We are so happy for them and wish them all the best.
Mikeyla and Austin looking great.
Mr & Mrs Clayton Verbonac
Today and yesterday was our Stake Conference.  We had to travel two and a half hours to Lille.  We only had three members from our Branch who were not able to go.  We had quite a contingent there which was impressive.  This speaks to the faithfulness and dedication of our Branch members.

Stake Conference was an uplifting experience.  We had a visiting 70 from the Europe West Interegion, Elder Boutoille.  He had an opportunity to speak to us three different times about keeping the Sabbath day holy, honouring the priesthood, magnifying our callings, remembering to do the important things and missionary work.  His words were very uplifting.  It was very interesting.  He is from Lille and has a home there but this was the first time in over 4 years that he has spoke at the Lille Stake Conference because he has always been assigned to speak elsewhere at the same time.

We had three out of four of our recently baptised converts at the conference.  We had the pleasure of driving two of them there.  It was very touching to see how they were moved by the spirit by what they heard and saw at the conference and by the people they met.  The members of the Stake went out of their way to make them feel welcome.  The Stake Presidency took time to speak to each of them individually and they also held a special meeting for new members.  Elder Boutoille spoke to each of them at this meeting.  It was very well done and we know it was appreciated.  

After the Saturday evening session we went out to dinner with the three converts from our Branch and other members from the Stake.  It was a great opportunity to socialise and get to know each other better.
Stake Conference is a time to see friends you haven't seen for a while as was the case for Elder Rivas
Our Beautiful Bed and Breakfast
This week we started a French Preach My Gospel class.  Most of the students are English and do not know very much French.  We are hoping they will take this opportunity to learn the Gospel and some French at the same time.  Lesson one went very well.

We had a great Genealogy class for our Wednesday Night Activity.  We were taught how to do indexing.  Many of our members, including Ed were able to try their hand at it.  It was interesting, informative and fun.

We had four teaching appointments this week.  For one of them we had to split up.  Lynn went with one Elder and Ed with the other.  We taught the Law of Chastity, the Plan of Salvation, the Sabbath Day and Keeping the Commandments.  We like this part of our assignment.

We got a call from a Friend of the Church who lives in Paris who we have become quite friendly with.  His parents live in Charleville.  We visit them often.  When he is in town he comes to our Branch.  He was quite worried because his mother is in the hospital.  We were able to visit her this week and let him know that she was doing well.

We also had an opportunity to do one apartment inspection, the easiest one because it was right here in Charleville-Mézières.  The Elders are doing a great job keeping things clean and tidy.

Because we are getting close to the year mark on our mission there a couple of hoops we have to jump through in France.  We have to apply for a "Titre de Séjour" and for a French Driver's License.  A "Titre de Séjour" is basically asking for another year's extension on your visa.   Both of these processes are much more complicated and expensive than they need to be.  We have to pay a sizeable amount for both of these and we have to get documents translated by an official translator, including our driver's license and a Driver's Abstract.  Even as we write we have a translator working on this.  We have to then take these to a préfecture office and pay a sizeable amount.  We went to the Préfecture.  They were unable to make an  appointment before November 10.  This was the first available date.  However, it is 6 days after the anniversary date of our arrival in France so there would be a 180€ ($280) late fee for each of us as well as a 106€ registration fee each.  This does not even include the costs for our driver's licenses or the cost of translations.  It is very frustrating.  We are hoping to get an earlier appointment.

Despite the frustrations we encountered at the Préfecture the rest of the week more than compensated for the frustration.  It's all part of living in France.  As they say, "C'est la vie."
The Great District Meeting Meal  made by Elder Rivas
Reggie, our grandson.  He really wanted to go to school with the other kids.
That's it for now.
Au revoir de la France,
Lyndi-lou and Eddie, too.   

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