June 15, 2015
Boy, we love you lots, I hope you know!! Thank you for the very kind and generous emails; I like hearing about the heat down there, whoo boy, that's really pushing the thermometer up there! It's interesting, because here in Nantes, it's not so hot, but it is also much more humid, so it's a little different. Mostly, it's pretty cool. But that might change. :D
I would be happy to give you some information! First of all, I need to tell you a little about my MTC companion, elder Johnson. He is a very strong, sweet character with a lot of love for Christ and a good sense of humor. He'd had very powerful experiences as a youth to give him a great testimony of the love of Christ that is truly there for each of us, and it's amazing to me now to look back and see his dedication he had, even at his young age in the mission, that he was just doing his missino for the Lord, and he didn't really need any other reason, you know what I mean? Other than that, he was a great guy, we had lots of fun times and laughs together, I look back on the MTC as a very positive experience. He was always pretty patient with me.
Now, my new information: our new address for our apartment is:
8 Rue Lamoricière-Villa Lamoricière
We are now in the zone of "Rennes-Angers," which means we're in the stake of the city of Angers, which is an hour or two north and a bit east of us, but our zone leaders, and our zone in particular, are separate, and we're stationed in Angers, which is maybe 30 to 45 minutes west of us, on the way to Paris, which is about 2 & 1/2 hours away from here. Nantes itself, the town, is about 45 minutes from the ocean, maybe 20 if you have a car. I believe you can get there by bus. Technically, we are allowed to go there until July, but I imagine that, given we're in France, it really isn't the best environment for a missionary to be at the beach in the spring/summer time. So, I think I'll avoid that. But it is fun to be so close to the sea, and to be in such a nice, cool, humid climate. (I say that knowing I may have just jinxed myself into a 95 degree constant week. Please pray that doesn't happen. Just kidding. :D) Our district is the district of Nantes, however, our district leader, Elder Adams, is stationed himself in Saint Nazaire, one hour north of hear, right on the coast.
My new companion, Elder Young, is a great guy. He has great dedication, and his strenghts lie in desire, obedience, and continally striving to do the right thing, even if it's hard, such as trying to contact people in the tram. He's been teaching me a lot about that, which has been good for me. I've been trying to do more of that, talking to people when we're just in the tram or bus, you know. It's fun, I guess. But yes, he has great dedication, to him, his mission is a gift to the Lord. He thinks a lot and very deeply. We've had a pretty easy week, he's very easy-going and very kind to me, sometimes even too kind, so we haven't had any big problems getting along. Now, the first couple weeks are always an adjustment, but I think we will be able to do great work if we focus on our objective, to serve Christ. I realize now that that dedication that some missionaries have, though completely internal and hard to describe or see, perhaps, is irreplaceable and invaluable to the people around them, and such people as Elder Young or Elder Johnson, my MTC comp, may serve their whole missions without ever realizing what they've done in such an importnat area as dedication to the Lord. I hope someday they get to read this.
Our members here in Nantes are fantastic. Truly, if we had more time, I could give you some names of people who are just amazing. I miss the people and ward in Charleroi 1, they were great, too. But i'm also happy to come here and meet all these new, amazing, strong saints. I love the part of French culture that is nice and strict, by the book, you know, whe, people try very hard to teach and run the Church the way it's meant to be run. I loved feeling that hard work, that effort here. Boy, and I met and talked to some great members on Sunday after church. We were able to even help them a bit by playing the piano for their choir performance. Now, it didn't sound very good, because they had a couple very challenging hymns that I had never learned completely, one of which I hadn't even heard before, but it was still good to be with the members and hang out with them for a while. Member work is a priority here, I think, and we talked to the bishop to see if we could get a weekly or bi-weekly or something to that effect meeting with him, so we could work in unity with him and the ward council. Also, we're going to start going to ward council as missionnaries, which should help the unity between members and missionaries increase. I really want to "kill," or do very good at, member-missionary work here. I feel like that could really bring us places. We have a HUGE number of missionaries here, six, just in one ville, which may not seem like much, but it really is! Plus one companiohship is the sister training leaders, so they'll probably baptize three people before we even know it! No, just kidding, but we're likingi t here in Nantes. I hope that's enough informatino to run on.
Joseph Warren Young is my comp's full name. He is now in his third trasnfer, he started his missino in February. We're in the Nantes Ward.
Thank you so much for the great papers and quotes you've sent me, I have three or them right on my wall here in Nantes, and I enjoy looking at them every night, and even more often than that. They help elevate my thoughts, send as many as you want, i love them! Thank you so much Brother and Sister Hughes. Is the family doing well? Ih hope that the ward is, too. Boy how is the old organ, still working in good condition? I miss it. Yeah, you know, I might try and get to play an organ on P-day next week. Do you know where that big cathedral was? I think maybe we could find it, Elder Young should know where it is. But God bless you, Brother and Sister hUGEHS. May his blessings be with you always! Until next time! I'll be praying for you! Till next time!!
Lots of love, your good friend,