Brrr, it is cold now, though it is supposed to snow tomorrow so I am excited. This week was a planning headache but it turned out well in the end.
Monday, we visited an elderly sister in our ward, Soeur Merer. She is in her eighties and lives in a cute apartment that is crammed full of memories. She is very thin but so full of energy and life. She talks a lot and I think one of her most recent trials is learning how to not overdo it. I don't know if she sat still for more than about 30 seconds the entire time we were there. Her grandson is serving in this mission so we heard a lot about "Glen." It was really funny because we saw Glen on Thursday, luckily I manager not to call him that to anyone else. Soeur Merer has an amazing testimony and her relationship with the Spirit and with God is so personal and strong. I learned a lot from her, she is very close to the Spirit and she loves this gospel. I want to be like her when I grow up.
Thursday we were invited to go to the Secret Mission Council Meeting. Okay, its not really secret, but it is only for the Zone and district leaders. Every time they invite one sister missionary companionship. It was really fun to see all the missionaries I know. It was cool, all the Elders from my MTC district but one were there, it was a little reunion. The meeting was from 10:30 to 5:00. In the morning we talked about prayer, and how much it is important. It was exactly what I needed, this week I have once again been studying prayer. There is so much power in prayer and I know that I don't comprehend all the thinks that can be accomplished through prayer.We talked about praying for each other, for the success of the missionaries in our mission. There is even more power when we pray for a common purpose, unity in prayer. We read the story of Hagar in the desert with Ishmael, and how Hagar prayed for help as did Ismael, but God answered Ismael's prayer for his mother rather than Hagar's prayer. One of the Elder's made a comment that often our prayers for others have a much purer desire than when we pray for ourselves. Thank you for all your prayers, I know that God has blessed me because of your faith.
After lunch we talked about things that the missionaries do that are not in keeping with missionary guidelines. It was very interesting to hear all the problems. I think I am very out of things because there were several things brought up that I was like, "really?" I learned that emails to our families are only supposed to take one hour, so these might be getting shorter because my typing still isn't the fastest. We read the scripture about obedience being better than sacrifice. It definitely made me take a look at the area I need to improve. Obedience is so essential, especially for missionaries!
After leadership council we met the sisters from St. Ouen for exchanges. I went with Soeur Martin to St.Ouen. Soeur Martin is French, from Toulouse, she is so cute, and she is an artist as well. Our exchange was a little strange because Friday morning we went and picked up Soeur Didier.I am still not entirely sure why, but for some reason she was temporarily without a companion, so she came with us. We did our studies and then went and visited one of Soeur Martin's amies, Ester. Then we went back into Paris to drop Soeur Didier off. Then we went picked up our stuff and headed to Versailles. Soeur Martin and her companion spent the night at our apartment because they got special permission to move their P-day to Saturday to go to the Varsailles Chateau. We had a lot of fun. We, or rather Souer Dremeaux and Soeur Martin, made crepes. The Chateau was very beautiful, and very gold. The luxury and ridiculousness of the building is quite amazing. I decided that i could never live in a place like that. There are statues that are twice the size that I am and i think that I would feel very lost all the time. I think is is interesting that the riches of the world, when you se them up close are kind of sad, and very empty. Especially when compared with the happiness I feel when i serve others and live simply. I think of the Nephites living after the manner of happiness, and I can't imagine that they were living in gold plated houses. one of the first steps to happiness is realizing that it isn't found in things.
Have a lovely week! I love you!!!!
Soeur Gaelin Turney