Two weeks to go . . .

Bonjour tout le monde!

This week was really GREAT!

We were so busy and running from one end of Chalon to Lyon to Beaune to Le Creusot. We did a LOT of traveling this week.  And it looks like this next week should be similar.

We went up to the zone pday activity last Monday and it was fun! Everyone loved the cookies. I didn’t even get a chance to snap a picture before all 99 of them were gone! After decorating the cookies, we played a bunch of group games, our favorite of which was Lougarou (Werewolf). You know that one game that’s like murder in the dark, but there are villagers and werewolves and seers and witches and stuff? That’s the one. We played about three rounds of it and all twenty of us were practically in tears from laughing so hard! It was a great, relaxing, fun pday.

The next day, we stayed in Lyon for an exchange with the Portes des Alpes sisters. While I was there, I ran into Dan! Do y’all remember Dan? Our engagée from Val de Saône? I was so happy to see him. I talked to him a bit and he’ll be getting baptized this Saturday! How great is that? He said he’s really been reading the Livre de Mormon and has been gaining a firm testimony of the restored gospel. I am so happy for him!

Wednesday, we were back in Chalon and we got to teach english class again. I LOVE teaching english class. It’s so fun! This last week, we taught them the song Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious. It was HILARIOUS.

Thursday, we were back in Lyon for district meeting which was great! Then that night, we took the train to Beaune to teach our recent convert, Alain, who is doing GREAT! And he always makes us chocolate mousse when we come over. Yum!

On Saturday, we had a small geneaology party at the church. Laurent came (who is now an avid geneaologist) and he helped our friend Madame Fistarol work on her geneaology. Want to hear a cool story? So, Mme Fistarol has Italian ancestors from a little ville called Termini Imerese in Sicily. Well, just before going to help her, we were watching a movie called “How Rare a Possession” about the Book of Mormon and this guy in Italy who was one of the first converts there. And he was baptized in Termini Imerese!!! What are the odds? Mme Fistarol’s ancestors probably knew Vincenzo di Francesca. Maybe he talked with them about the church. When we recounted this story to Mme Fistarol, she wasn’t nearly as excited as we were, but she agreed that it was a very cool “coincidence”.

Yesterday was stake conference. Luckily, we were actually able to get it shown at the Chalon building for the first time thanks to the Millers! So, we watched conference there and it was so great! We had lots of great speakers. Our stake president launched a challenge to all the members to, this year, focus on Elder Ballard’s challenges: Study Preach My Gospel, prepare one name to take to the temple, and invite someone once a trimester to take the missionary lessons. They gave every member of the stake a little satchet with one yellow stone, one blue stone, and 4 red stones in it.  The yellow stone represents PMG, the blue stone represents the name prepared for the temple, and the red stones represent 4 friends invited to take the discussions. They placed three jars in each church building. Whenever a member meets one of these challenges, they place their stone in the jar. Next year at stake conference, they will collect all the jars and we will see how much we were able to do as the Lyon stake towards meeting Elder Ballard’s challenges. It was a really cool and motivating idea! We in the Chalon branch are excited to get started! We know that Elder Ballard is an apostle of the Lord and that if we follow his counsels, we will be blessed!

This week is Halloween! The frenchies aren’t much for Halloween, but I’m trying to drum us up a Halloween activity anyways.

We will be traveling to Lyon this week for zone conference with Elder Kearon of the seventy! We are so excited to have him and his wife coming to speak to us. It should be pretty cool! Stay tuned!

Have a good week!

Avec amour,

Soeur Jones
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le motier

Bonjour tout le monde!

This week was really great! We had lots of fun stuff happen!

On Monday night, we went out to Beaune to do a FHE for the members that live out there (it’s too far away to drive to the Chalon FHE every Monday). So, we gathered in our recent convert, Alain’s, apartment and sang and had a little lesson on obedience and for an activity, we made thank you cards for all the people that had borne their testimonies in sacrament meeting the day before. Plus, Alain made us his famous chocolate mousse. So it was good times all around.

On Wednesday, we spent lots of time at the church. We have this little old lady (a non-member) who comes every week and we help her do her geneaology on Family Search (’cause she doesn’t know how to use computers). We sit there and enter things into family search and do research on geneological websites for her. She never knows what’s going on though. She just sits there and randomly points at the screen and says, “1928. Yes. That’s my grandfather.” Even if it’s a totally random unrelated person. We’ve been working with her for a while, and we’ve been hitting a dead end the last couple of weeks. However, this week, we hit the jackpot! We found birth and baptismal records for an entire line of her family from Italy! Soeur Andreasen and I were so excited! We were freaking out and little ol’ Madame Fistarol was just like, “what?”

Then we taught english class. This is one of my favorite missionary activities. I LOVE teaching english class. It’s so much fun. This week was especially fun, because Soeur Andreasen and I taught our class, “Popcorn Popping on the Apricot Tree.” And the hand motions. 🙂 It was so funny to watch them all, concentrating really hard to sing “Spreeng as brot me sutch a neece supreese” and do the hand motions at the same time. Then we talked about holidays and the difference between certain holidays in America and in France. At the end, one of the people asked, “Ees all you americans do ees eat?” And I said, “Oui.”

Thursday night, we had dinner at our ward mission leader/collector/building a museum in his backyard-er’s house. And it was good times. He’s building a museum in his backyard where the first exhibition will be about the Bourgonian vineyards.

So today, we are supposed to have a zone pday in Lyon. But, by the time that Satuday evening came, we still didn’t have any information about it other than our train tickets. So, I called the zone leaders and figured out that it was a giant unorganized mess and they didn’t know what to do. They had some activity ideas, but it was too late on Saturday for them to try to call everyone to bring treats and everything. So they were stressed. But since we live right next door to a Carrefour, I said, “We will take care of the snacks!” So we ran to the Carrefour and yesterday afternoon, I made 99 sugar cookies. And about 1 kilo of frosting.

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These boxes are FULL of cookies stacked up like that… Hope we have enough.
I’ll take some pictures of the finished, decorated cookies today and send them out next week!
Have a great week everybody!
Avec amour,
Soeur Jones

Chalon, week 2

Bonjour tout le monde!

Well. We spent this week running around like crazy hooligans because we have SO much to do.

I feel like we spend our whole lives on trains.

We’ve been taking the train out to Beaune, a small ville about 25 minutes from Chalon, twice a week to visit our recent convert, Alain, and his next door neighbor (who is a member), Soeur Ziveri. Going to Soeur Ziveri’s to teach Alain is always fun because Soeur Ziveri’s apartment is like a boarding house. There’s always new and random people living there. Also, she has 8 cats. Less fun, but equally as entertaining. However, Alain is doing great! He loves the gospel and is preparing to receive the Aaronic Priesthood. Yay! Take that Satan.

We were also on the train to Lyon again this week, going to zone training. Zone training was AWESOME! One of the best I’ve had my whole mission! So, a few weeks ago, President Roney, in the mission newsletter, told us that he had been inspired recently by the story of the Title of Liberty. So, in his attempt to be all Captain Moroni like, he rent one of his white missionary shirts and wrote on it:

In memory of our God, our religion, our mission, our pleasantries, our homes, and our families (present and future). REMEMBER. Trust in God continually. France Lyon Mission.

And then he signed it. And called it the Title of Baptistry. And then he invited us all to do it too! So, in our zone, we all made titles of baptistry. And we talked about sacrifice. It was a touching meeting and I had the opportunity to do a musical number with another sister in the zone. We performed “Come Unto Christ”, the youth theme music for this year. It was really fun!

On Saturday morning, we had a fun young adult activity that we planned. We had planned on going out and playing football, (as in soccer….) but it was raining (it’s been exceptionally rainy here lately), so we had an indoor game day with Laurent and his sister and some other JA’s from the branch. It was super fun!

It was fun going to church yesterday. Because of General Conference, we didn’t have normal church last week, so this was the first week that I finally got to see everyone. The sister missionaries are now the young women’s presidents of the branch, so Soeur Andreasen and I get to teach our one young woman every Sunday, which is good times. I’ve been reading through the new youth manual and I think it’s so great! But it was fun to be back. It was just like coming back to my home ward. I’m pretty sure some of the older members didn’t think that I ever left…

This week is looking to be a super busy week as well. Wish us luck!!! (Especially with our 20 lessons!)

Avec amour,

Soeur Jones

Chalon chalon chalon

I AM SO HAPPY.

I love Chalon Sur Saône so much. As I’ve been getting back into contact with the members of the branch and old investigators this week, I’ve felt SO much love! I am so blessed to be back in Chalon for my last transfer.

Unfortunately, we were rarely in Chalon this week. We were in and out of Lyon every other day! Wednesday morning, we got a call from the office saying, “WHERE ARE YOU?” I said, “Uh… we’re in Chalon…” They said, “You are supposed to be in here in an hour and a half for Soeur Andreasen’s legality appointment!” This is grave because legality appointments CANNOT be missed… or the governement gets mad at the mission. However, we had never received any tickets or notification that we were supposed to go that week. So, the office told us there was a train in 15 minutes that could MAYBE get us there on time. So, we RAN out of the house and SPRINTED to the gare and we caught the train. And made it to Lyon. And were only 16 seconds late for her appointment. We were pretty proud of ourselves. So, we spent a surprise Wednesday in Lyon.

Then we were back in Lyon on Friday for Blue’s Conference. It was super fun! Soeur Andreasen got to reunite with all of her blue friends and I got to see lots of cool missionaries that I know from all over the mission! We spent time being taught about the important principles that trainers teach in the first 12 weeks and did LOTS of awkward role plays. It was great!

And the time we were in Chalon was even BETTER! I’ve been so thrilled walking around and realizing that Eric the street cleaner and the guy with the big moustache that works in the kebab shop still remember who I am. It’s super fun. Chalon is blowing up with missionary work too! We have LOTS of amis and less actives we are working with. Sometimes I wonder how we’re going to fit it all in in a week!

ALSO, we had General Conference. Which was really just the best. Apart from the serious technical difficulties. The church had a hard time getting conference on the Internet in different languages, so on Sunday, we were only able to access conference in English… So. I had to translate. Conference. I never noticed before, but those guys use lots of big words that I don’t know how to translate in French. But I did the best I could and I think everyone caught the drift. I felt so uplifted by conference! I loved the emphasis on personal revelation and introspection. WE ARE SO LUCKY to have a living prophet and apostles on the earth today and to have the opportunity to listen to them share the will of God for us!

We are looking forward to another VERY busy but VERY great week here in Chalon! Hope everyone else’s weeks are equally as great! If you didn’t get a chance to watch all the sessions of conference, you totally should find some time to do it this week! They were all SO great!

Avec amour,

Soeur Jones

Sorry about the total lack of photos. I’ll repent and do better next week.