Thursday, April 26, 2012

Satan = Loser, Righteous = Winner

Life is good. This past week and a half were great. Last week we spent most of the time in our area and it was great. We met some oppostion, but what it is new? Satan hates what we do. We were teaching one of our amis about baptism and confirmation during Sunday school. We had invited 3 recent converts to come and participate in our lesson. We talked briefly about faith and repentance and then we had a good discussion about baptism and receiving the gift of the Holy Ghost. Everyone remarked that the Doctrine of Christ was very clear and simple. Then almost all at once, each of the recent converts took the time to testify that the gospel was plain and simple, but before each of their baptisms they met opposition from friends and family. They each testified that it was worth the opposition in order to have the blessings of baptism and confirmation. It was a very powerful moment and our amie could feel the support of the other members, understanding that if she met opposition, there would be people around her to support her. We finished the lesson and as we opened the door of the classroom, the mother of our amie was standing there and wanted to speak to us immediately. We then stepped right back into the classroom and the mother told us that she was frustrated and that she was opposed to the baptism of her daughter. Our amie was very sad and she realized that what she had just learned was very real; she realized that the powers of Satan were very real and that Satan did not want her to be baptized. We spoke with her and her mother and then said a prayer together that the opposition of Satan would not keep our amie from being able to follow Jesus Christ. This experience was a testimony to us that we are truly at war with Satan, he controls the powers of evil and we, as servants of the Lord, hold the powers of heaven. I know that we are called to rebuke the power of Satan and pull down the power of the Spirit from Heaven. Satan will lose, and the righteous will win because we stand with the Lord. We as missionaries are all called of the Lord and we must do all we can to overcome the opposition of Satan. We spent Monday and Tuesday back in Aix-en-Provence and Marseille for P-Day / an exchange. It was great!!!! We got to see the Kool Family with Greg and Jolaine, with Elder Baret, Elder Claflin and myself. I love them so much, I am sure you will love them when you come to Aix. We also got to see Robine, which was so good, she is doing well and it was great to see her again and remember how much we experience together. We spent Wednesday and Today with Elder Heywood and Elder Allen, in Lyon on an exchange / a training for all the new missionaries from last transfer. It was great, I spent the day working with Elder Heywood and was with Elder Allen in the apartment and out an about for the training, I love them both. It is cool to see all of my mission brothers again and so often because we can see how much all of us have learned, and experienced. I love you all and I am sorry that I couldn't write before today! LOVE Elder Smith

Wednesday, April 18, 2012



Wednesday - We taught Anai the plan of salvation, she had lots of great questions and it went really well, she is excited for her baptism. We taught a new family, the mother Victoria is not ready for the gospel but her daught Jessica was really cool, I hope that we will be able to teach her in the future enough if her mom isn't ready. We also went and ate with the Serrano family, the family that Elder Bollero and I helped come back. The mom and dad and 2 daughters are back and active and the one son, yoan, who is so cool is almost back. He is going to EFY this year in Provo!!! SOOO COOL!!! I have already set up the dates and I am going to go see him in the middle of July in Provo. We also stopped by a partial member family for the birthday of one of the daughters and had cake.

Thursday - It was pouring rain, but when we left if was just a little gray. So we got pretty wet until we found our way into an apartment building where we knocked some doors. We taught a less active sister, Aurore and it went really well. She is stopping smoking, she has a real desire and we had a powerful lesson about obedience and faith with her. We then went and knocked some doors with the rule of 10s (the rule of 10s is Presidents counsil to us knock at least 10 doors around every person that we visit) we have met a good amount of people just by that simple finding idea. We got let in some doors and taught, I will let you know if they progress

Friday - We had interviews with Presdent in our Zone. We went and taught Celia the plan of salvation, she is excited for her baptism but there is some oppostion that has popped up for her date, her mom (she lives with her step mom) is open to the baptism but whats her to be with her during that, so we might have to move her baptismal date. There was also a partial member family, the frossard family that called us because their non member kids had questions about the church and they wanted to have priesthood blessings. That was a way cool experience, even though they don't know the gospel they literally called upon the elders of the church for a blessing. It went really well and we had a very powerful moment with them. There was a moment during the blessing that I felt to talk about Chasity ( I was giving a blessing to a fairly cute 19 year old girl) .......awkward...... so i hesitated and I lost all flow of words, I realized that I needed to talk about it and as soon as I did the words came back and the spirit came and she began to cry during the blessing. It was a lesson learned for me to never doubt the inspiration of the spirit.

Saturday - We taught a less active family that is coming back with their home teachers and we also taught Anai about the restoration again because she had a question about Joseph Smith, she told us that she told her mother about her baptism and that her mother supported her, her mother is coming up to France from Spain for her baptism but in order to be there we will have to move her baptismal date, that is ok though because it is going to be really cool for her mom to come.

Sunday - We had church and during church. We taught some people in the afternoon and on the way to an appointment we were headed to an appointment and I saw a young mother but I didn't contact her because we were in a hurry. During the whole lesson I couldn't stop thinking about her. After the lesson I told my companion that we had to go knock on the building that I had seen her by in hopes that we would find her, she lived in the second to last door in the building and her name is Gracy. We taught her and have an appointment to come back this week and teach her with her family.

I love preaching the gospel and this week was one of the best weeks of my mission, I know that this doesn't mean anything to you because you are not on a mission, but we met EVERY SINGLE ONE OF OUR GOALS this week. We were very blessed, never once have I had every goal, I have had great weeks where we had really great opportunities to teach and find peope but this week we reached the standards of excellence in each level and we had many opportunities where we were led by the spirit in finding and in teaching! I love this work and I know that if we did not have the spirit to lead us and to guide us and to teach us that we would never be able to accomplish anything, life is beautiful and being a missionary is great :)

Love you all!
Elder Smith

PS This thursday it is the birthday of one of my best mission buddies, Elder Pittson. He served in Aix in the other companionship while I was there and he has been in the office with me for the last three transfers. He is gone today for some apartment stuff so for a good portion of my P Day I made a homemade mustache pinata for him with hangers, tape, card board and paper.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012


Behold my week

Monday - P day and dinner and a lesson with a less active family that is half way back to church. It is a family that started to come back when Elder Bollero and I were together. La Famille Aeberhard, they are really cool and I love them, we spoke about how they came to know what the missionaries were teaching was true. It was cool to see that their testimonies were still burning strong

Tuesday - A new missionary, Elder Stanford came into the mission all alone, so we spent the day with him, his trainer and President getting him ready for the field. I wish I could be in his place, after President and Sister Murdock took us out to a delicious restaurant and we ate this super fancy great fondue. I ordered horse, it was pretty good

Wednesday - We spent most of the day in Lyon at a Zone Leader Council and then we went and did an exchang in Montpellier. I was with Elder Brough, with whom I served in Nice, it was great. We went out into this huge square and put up a sign and talked to people, it felt like the good ole days back in Nice

Thursday - We finished up in Montpellier and then drove back to Geneva, We met some cool people while we were out contacting and knocking doors, they didn't have any appointments so we did lots of finding and I hope that they will be able to teach some of the people that we met. I contacted a less active member from the north of france and spoke with him for awhile about the sacrament and I invited him to go back to church, he was on vacation. He told me that he kept crossing the missionaries and I told him that it was not a coincidence and that he needed to come back. After all this Elder Claflin and I had a nice 5 hour road trip back to Geneva, lots of laughs and it is good to be back with him.

Friday - We spent alot of the day catching up on projects and things that needed to be done in the office and then we went out and had a really cool experience. A member is taking some post high school classes with a friend and she has wanted to inviter her to church but she didn't know how. She came up with the idea that we stand in front of the high school with a big sign that said 'LAN' on it (her friends name). When she came out of the school her friend was surprised but really loved it, the member, 3 of her friends and us spoke for awhile and gave a Book of Mormon to her friend, she was really touched and very interested in coming to church. We set another time to go see her and I hope that we will be able to teach her

Saturday - We went out and knocked doors and such and then we went and taught Anai, we taught her about the ressurection and invited her to come to the baptism of an 8 year old on sunday afternoon. It was a good lesson and she was very excited to come to church and to the baptism

Sunday - MIRACLES!!!! We went to church and we ate an easter lunch with some members and then we went to the baptism of the 8 year old with Anai. While we were sitting in at the baptism service Elder Claflin looked at me and told me that he needed to speak with Celia, a 14 year old un baptised daughter of a completely active family, so he leaded forward and started to talk to her, he felt that he should invite her to be baptised and she immediately said YES! I would love to, I have been waiting to be baptised. She thanked him and was very touched, we are going to teach her and she is getting baptised on the 5th of May!! 45 minutes later we were teaching Anai and we asked her what she thought of the baptism, she really enjoyed and in our lesson we had 3 sisters from the ward with us, they each took the time to testify of their baptisms and then we invited Anai to be baptised she said yes as well and she will be baptised on the 5th of May as well. 30 Minutes later we were eating dinner with the Celi Family and Vicente, who is a 19 year old non baptised son of a completely active family turned to us and said "when are you going to baptise me?" I said May 5th right away and he laughed, we explained how that could actually work because he was joking and then we asked him if we could teach him so that he could see if he would like to be baptised on the 5th of May and he said yes. We also spoke to one person on the street during all of this 3 hours of miracles and she invited us to teach her and her family the next day.

Yesterday - we went back and taught the woman, victoria and her daughter jessica and they are very interested in coming to church and reading the Book of Mormon, and they already know some members!

This week was full of faith and miracles, I had some great discussions with President Murdock and Elder Claflin and I have never felt so full of fire to find and baptise people, the Lord is pouring out blessings after we put a good amount of hard work and faith into Gex and I am so grateful for his mercy and love to let us work along side him.

I love you all! Happy Easter!
Elder Smith

Monday, April 2, 2012

le primtemps a Geneve

Spring has sprung and life is good. I am already back the groove with Elder Claflin and I am still a little stunned that he is my companion again. He is honestly like a brother to me, funny enough he kind of reminds me of Ben. We get along great and we are excited to baptise. Elder Claflin is just who I needed to help me finish my mission at full blast, and if I am not mistaken you will maybe meet him when you come to pick me up. (concerning picking me up, I think that you said that you are going to arrive in Geneva, but I am going to move to Lyon in like 5 weeks, so I think that might pose a couple of problems :) Can i start emailing members and recent converts and stuff to make sure that we can come see them, that would be great if you can let me know where we will be on what days and how long we will be there)

so my week

Monday - Pretty normal p-day, I recieved Elder Claflin and it was just a normal P day

Tuesday - We got up early and sent off the oldies and then we picked up the newbies. We did a nice round of contacting with them on their first day, I loved it, I wish I was a newbie, we did some training stuff and then we let president take over and we went out into our area and did a little work, passing some referals that the members had given us.

Wednesday - We sent off all the missionaries and then we came home and went out into our area and taught Anai, we are going to try to baptise her this transfer, she is great. Later that night we went and taught a partial member family and had dinner with them, the Yesli family. The mother is remarried and her new husband comes from a muslim background but he comes to church every week and really enjoys the members and the church. We went and invited them to general conference and started see what we can do to help him progress towards baptism, we will see what happens.

Thursday -Thursday we woke up and started moving the office into France because there is legal issues with the new office couple. Then we went home and started packing the mission home and garage because there were some things that had to change because of legal issues and bla bla bla, long story short we spent a good part of the day with president in our jeans throwing away stuff and boxing up stuff.

Friday - (BEST DAY OF THE WEEK) I went on an exchange with Elder Moore, he is a zone leader in Geneva, but there was a problem, neither of us have drivers licenses. So we took the bikes!!! He talked to WAY more people than we usually do in the car, because we would ride up to people and stop them while we were on our bikes and people are surprised because they think that you need help or something. We were also able to help people with groceries and random service things because it is very easy to stop and park a bike compared to a car. The day was full of miracles need less to say, there was even a woman that stopped in the middle of traffic because she recognized 'les elders' on their bikes, she had been trying to get in contact with missionaries for awhile and she is know has the number of the elders in Geneva. We were quite tired and we had to ride our bikes for like 40 minutes to get home because the bus driver wouldn't let us in the bus with our bikes, but it was a great day and I think that we are going to start using the bikes more often.

Saturday and Sunday - Both days were filled with conference and setting up things and stuff, but the spirit was strong. OH it was strong, I love general conference, it is like missionary super bowl or march madness. I got to see saturday morning, priesthood and sunday morning. I would have been able to see saturday afternoon but there was a problem getting conference into mongolian for a bunch of people at the stake center so i spent most of that session running around looking for a laptop and projector and speakers and flashdrives and bla bla bla, I am happy to that we got things to work but it is not very interesting to explain to you how things got working.

Today - we went and play soccer with the elders in geneva and then we rode bikes around in geneva, then we came home and threw a frisby and hit wiffle golf balls with president in his yard and then I just got done with a temple recommend interview with him because my recommend expired at the end of march.

Lilfe is great here in Switzerland and in France
Elder Smith