Tuesday, February 28, 2017

Love from Lyon Week 36

Bonjour a tous!
        I hope you have all had a wonderful week! Time is flying by, I can't believe last week was the last week of the transfer! So me and soeur Lowder are staying together in Lyon, I am so excited I love Lyon so much and I am so excited to keep working with all of the wonderful people here! Last Monday was presidents P-day where all of the missionaries get to go to President's house, and we played volleyball and had lunch and just got to hang out! It was a lot of fun, and a great start to an awesome week!
        We have really had so many miracles this week, and some incredible lessons! The beginning of the week was a little bit slow but by the end literally miracle after miracle:) One of the funny lessons of this week was with Jaqueline, whose husband is a less active. We were teaching about the Priesthood and Temples and he was saying some crazy things (apparently he is also a part of a Catholic Church) and he was saying how Priests have the priesthood, and how he has lived the lives of his ancestors (he is all about reincarnation) Ha he is a little crazy, but I was so proud of Jaqueline because she was correcting him and understanding so well, she has been progressing wonderfully!
        On friday morning we got to go out to Vienne and see Martha, which was so good! It's been so awesome to be working with that family! Then that night we had an awesome lesson with another ami named Michelle,
and got to meet her whole family! And her sons were super interested to come to Samedi Sportif! Saturday though we really did have so many miracles! Me and Soeur Lowder both had the thought during planning to go and see a less active who we have tried to visit multiple times. We headed out to see her before Samedi Sportif, and she was there and let us in! She was so kind and is now interested in coming back to church! Then that afternoon we headed out to see Joy, so she is an ami of the elders who we are going to start teaching with them. She is from Nigeria and is kind of a refugee here, she is an English speaker and so kind. She is so humble, and its been really cool to see her start to accept the gospel. She said the cutest thing in church that she wants her two daughters to grow up like me and sr Lowder, to teach people and speak about God. I love her!
        Then the best part of the day, that night Frère Paran (our DMP) invited us over to his house for dinner. And when we get there Irina and Seda were there! Irina and Seda are a mother and daughter who are Russian refugees who I have never met but we have been trying to get in contact with them all transfer! It turns out there phone has been broken, but we finally got to meet them and we are going to start seeing them again! They have been through so much, that the faith they have in God is really so incredible! Really so many of the people we get to teach are such examples for me!
        I have been reading in Jesus the Christ, and this week I read about Christ's atonement. What's been amazing to me is that no matter how many times we study about the atonement there is always something new that touches me. The atonement is literally the greatest act of love that has ever been accomplished, and I am so thankful for my savior and what he did. What has really hit me this week is that Christ really wasn't accepting to suffer as much as he did, and multiple times during the garden he asked that the cup be taken from him, however he always finished by telling his father "not my will but thine be done." Christ suffered an anguish we can't begin to imagine, and he did it out of love for us and his father. He had to conquer Satan and all forms of sin but he did so, and he came out a victor. However if we look at Christ's life through mortal eyes it was a failure, that ended in his death; however we know better because we have eternal perspective. Because we have the knowledge about our Heavenly Father's plan for us we know that Christ performed the greatest act in history.
        I know that sometimes life is really hard, and no we will not always want to do the hard things. I know though that Heavenly Father knows better than us, and even during our trials we will never be alone. Christ already suffered alone, so we never have to be. Keep your eternal perspective, because amazing things are waiting for us, because of what our Savior has done!
        Sorry that was really long, but I am so thankful for my savior and I know that he lives and loves each of us so much!
        I love all you all so much, and I am so thankful for everything you do!
Je vous aime!
Soeur Soffe

Presidents P-day on Presidents Day.

Family I love!! The family Blackburn from Utah! They had us over last Monday
(comment from McKenna's dad...I love that Soeur Soffe's english is starting to sound like it's her second language..."Family I Love" instead of I love this family. Haha...that's awesome!

Castle ruins in a near by city of Vienne! Super cool!

Lyon, near the confluence of the two rivers that divide the city.

Lyon street

Tuesday, February 14, 2017

Livin' it up, Lyon Style🦁 Week 34

Bonjour a tous!
I hope you have all had a wonderful week, time is flying by I can't believe it is already week 5 of this transfer! 
Starting off this week we had some really great lessons with our amis on Tuesday, its been really awesome to see how Jaqueline and Jose is progressing. We had our awesome DMP and his wife teach with us for Jose and it helped so much, they helped answer a lot of his questions and we saw some progress! Jose is a little different, and learns very slowly so we were stoked to see him start to understand:) 
On Wednesday we had Zone Conference! It was a little stressful getting everything ready for it. President and Soeur Brown came, and me and Soeur Lowder presented a little as well as the zone leaders. Ha what we had planned to speak about changed a little bit, but in the end I'm hoping to went really well. We talked all about Temples, we have a new brochure le Temple et la famille that we just got translated to French and we are using it to get people excited for the first temple in france!! We have actually been teaching about the temple a lot this week, and each time I am lucky enough to testify about the temples I am so thankful we have them again on this earth. That is our goal for every person we talk to and teach, to go to the temple and feel of the eternal joy that we do. I know that temples are truly the houses of the Lord, and I feel so thankful for the amazing gift we have of eternal families!
That night after zone conference we had a really incredible lesson with a less active we have been teaching. Her name is YoYo and is from the Congo and we both felt like we really just needed to teach her about her divine identity. As we testified that she was a beloved daughter of God, for the first time she opened up to us and talked to us about her past. The spirit was so strong during all of the lesson, and at the end she said she would come to the open house of our new church! It as awesome, and one of those moments that helped me remember why I am here:) 
The end of the week we were delivering these cookie plates that we have been making for all of our members. We made notes that said this was our way of showing our love and now it was their turn to give that love to someone else. We wrote down a few ideas of what they could do, like inviting a friend to church, or introducing an ami to us, or praying for someone, etc. We haven't had a lot of time to deliver all of them but I am super excited to start sparking up the members:)
Today us and some of the other missionaries headed up to fourvière and vieux Lyon and it was gorgeous! Fourvière is a beautiful old cathedral that overlooks all of Lyon. And then right next to it is an ancient amphitheater which dates back to before Christ was on the earth! Super super cool to see!!

I love you all and thank you for all of your love and support and prayers!
Je vous aime!!
Soeur Soffe 

Had another Chinese night to celebrate the lantern festival! 🏮 me and Sr Lowder have decided to be the next Chinese sisters:) 

We love Lyon

Roman ruins


Vieux Lyon


Monday, February 6, 2017

When you take a mission tour Week 33

Bonjour A tous!
I hope it has been a great week for you! I feel like time is just flying by, this week seemed so fast! In the beginning of the week we were traveling to do Soeur Lowder legality we ended up going to Montpellier and Grenoble! We were on so many trains, and we ended up playing a game of who could spot the chateau (castle) but when we came back we had some really good lessons and great work here in our sector! It's crazy how when for a few days you don't get to work very much, you are so excited to get back home and get to work again. On Thursday after district meeting I had an exchange with sister Meyers, she is super cute and from Germany and we had so much fun together! She is so kind to everyone she meets and has a really incredible optimistic attitude. The lessons we had on the exchange weren't the easiest, but she still did really well. Me and Soeur Lowder had some little miracles this week. What we have really been focusing on following the spirit with all of the promptings we receive. As we were waiting at a bus stop this woman came up to us and pointed to our tags, and in broken french told us she had just moved here from Brazil and was baptized in our church there! We quickly exchanged contact information and invited her to church. Sadly after talking with her Sunday morning she didn't come, but hopefully we can see her this next week!
Then Saturday  night we had a really great lesson with Martha and Hector, we taught about the plan of salvation and the spirit was really strong. It's still a little difficult with the language barrier, but what was amazing is that hector would speak Spanish (to his family) and I could actually understand a little of what he was saying, it's really amazing to see how the gift of tongues is manifest sometimes. The lesson went really well, and at the end we invited them to be baptized and they didn't want to fix on a date, but they said they know that they need to be baptized! So I am so excited to keep working with them!
Je vous aime!!
Soeur soffe

Fourvière, in Lyon!! So pretty!

Exchange with the Clermont sœurs!

When the best parents in the world send you nerf guns in the mail, you go hard

Wednesday, February 1, 2017

Changes and Chinese New Year!🎊 Week 32

Bonjour a tous!
I hope you have all had a wonderful week, its been so wonderful here in Lyon and I am loving it so much!
        Monday we had a fun p-day of soldes shopping, and then our rendez-vous tombez'd so we did some very cold contacting.
        Tuesday we had our first exchange and it was so much fun! I was on exchange with Soeur Tupua'ata, she is from California and has been out about a year and is now serving in Chalon. She is so sweet and funny and we had so much during our very busy day. We had a really great lesson with one of our amis Jacqueline, who told us about how she has been reading in the BOM and read about Lehi's vision and she loved it! She is awesome, and that is one of the best things when your ami's love the book of Mormon:) hen after a few passes we went to a really sweet JA (young adult's) for a 15 minute and she was awesome. I made my burritos for dinner that night, and it was a success! (Don't no hands were cut open this time thanks to a nifty avocado slicer, thanks dad;) )
        Wednesday we sent of the Chalon sœurs and then headed to a lesson with one of our members neighbors, but when we got their she told us that our ami didn't want to have lessons our anything to do with the church anymore:( sad but everyone has got their own timing. Then we had a fun 15 min with our DMP and his wife, they are the cutest old couple and are so stoked about missionary work. Then we headed over to the office to watch the missionary broadcast, a lot of changes but I am stoked about them! Then all of the STL's came and slept in our apartment (because our apartment is literally lined with bunk beds
there is 17 beds in all!) it was super fun though and I got to see some of my favorite people, including soeur smith! I love her!
        Thursday was MLC and it was really really good. We talked about the new changes for the missionary and things we can be doing better. Also we can now take metros, which is super exciting!! What I am really excited about is with these new key indicators we can really just focus on people and not on numbers. Now we have more liberty to really follow the spirit and focus on what our real purpose is. We are here to bring people to Christ, yes through baptism and going to the temple, but we are here to help people return home to our heavenly father! We have the path that will take us home and bring us joy, and it is our role to share that with as many people as we can:)
        Friday we had some passes and lessons and then that night we went to the Rigby's (a senior couples apartment) to celebrate Chinese new year! There are a few recent converts here who are Chinese, and just might be my favorite members in the ward! It was them and a lot of missionaries and they taught us how to make dumplings, and we really all just had a lot of fun:)
        Saturday night we headed out to Vienne to see a family that we are teaching, I have been dying to meet them and they are so awesome. It's hard to catch them all together because of their work schedules, but we did and we had a really awesome lesson. They are from the Dominican Republic, and have two cute little kids. They have so much love in their family and have such strong faith! Sunday was great as always, and ended with a fun dinner at the Rigbys!
I love you all so much and hope you had a wonderful week!!
Soeur Soffe

Exchange with Sœur T!


Dumpling party