Sorry for the late letter. Everything in Guadeloupe closed down on Monday for a "holiday." People here take any excuse they can to take a day off of work... It's so weird to be in the city on holidays! It's like a post-apocalyptic scene from a movie where EVERYBODY died and you're the last ones one earth! But no, people are just inside sleeping or watching TV.
Editor's Note: It was Armistice Day on November 11th, a holiday in most areas in Europe commemorating the end of World War 1.
We had Zone Conference last week. It was great! I loved it! I got to see almost all of the rest of the French missionaries in the West Indies! They're great! I'm excited to work with some of them in the future! :)
I got to see Elder Taylor David Russell!!!! :) He's one of my childhood friends that's serving here in this mission, but on the island of Martinique. We've always had a special connection because we have the same first and middle names! He came to Guadeloupe for Zone Conference! It was a great reunion! :) We've literally known each other since kindergarten, and he lives just around the corner from me. We even learned French together in High School! Now we're speaking "fluently" on our missions in the West Indies! :) It's sweet!!
One thing that was really stressed in Zone Conference this time was obedience. Our senior couple, The Bennions, just went home, and we don't have any senior couples coming in on the horizon! We have 16 missionaries here on Guadeloupe, with no immediate adult supervision. Oh boy... I'm sure we'll be okay. But President Mehr really wants to make sure that we're all doing our best to be EXACTLY obedient. He wants us to be using our time completely, and wasting none of it at all. He gave me a new persprective on disobedience... Glorified beings give off a certain amount of liight. The more righteous the being was in this life, the more light they'll have in immortality. In immortality, we cannot do anything to change the amount of light we have. We are stuck with exactly the amount of light we deserve. And in this life, all we can really do is lose light. He told us that EVERY SINGLE TIME you do something that is even slightly disobedient, you are literally losing light! It's really grave and scary to think about it like that! That wasn't the only thing we learned though. The rest of it was lovely. :)
One thing that we've gotten started here in our branch this last transfer is English Class! It's great here! Since I've been here I have only met ONE American, and it was completely by chance at the grocery store. That just goes to show how rare of a species we missionaries are in Guadeloupe... Tons of people here want to learn English, and who better to teach it than missionaries?? So, we've been doing it every Friday night and it's great!! It's far from professional, but our students love it! We get a consistent flow of investigators who come, which is great! The members love it too. On average, we get about 6-10 who come! For any of you missionaries reading this who are in foreign language-speaking missions, English Class is really fun and a great way to teach people! :)
WE GOT A BLENDER!!!
When you're in the Carribean and there's fruit everywhere, you've gotta have a blender, right? Well we didn't have one until just recently. But now we have one, and it's the best! :) We've been making one or two smoothies each day! It's the end of the transfer (transfer calls this weekend!!) so we used up some of our leftover money on a bunch of fresh fruit! Bananas, pineapple, strawberry syrup, coconut syrup, peanut butter, honey, nutella, etc... :) C'est bon!!
That's the news I have for you on our blender. I'll keep you updated on that next week. ;)
WORKING TOWARD BAPTISM
This past week we have been able to firmly set a baptismal date with Jocelyn for December 7th. He is our investigator who comes to church every week, but just hasn't been baptised because he doesn't have his own house! He's been taught by countless Elders, but we are really hoping that we can be the ones to make the jump into the waters of baptism! This past week we've been working a lot with him to help him get through the process with all the legal stuff (I think like social services, etc.) We've been really trying to encourage him and get him excited about baptism. We've fasted with him, made him two cakes now (one was for his birthday last Monday!), and we visit him several times a week to keep him thinking about it.
If you can remember, please pray for him to be able to do all that he can to keep his commitment for December 7th! This is something he's been putting off way too long, and he really needs this change in his life right now!
Our other investigators haven't been so strong as of late. Annie and Rudgy sadly had a family member pass away this past week, so we didn't get to see them for our last two appointments. And Adrian just has a lot of doubts and wants to move really slowly. We're still working with them though!
The weeks are really flying by now! I can't believe that I've been in Guadeloupe for 4 months now! It's so crazy! I have gone through so much already. But there is so much work to be done here, I can't even say that I've even scratched the surface of the iceberg! I have a lot more I still have to do. I'm excited to keep going and I hope that when I come home, I will be able to say that I'm satisfied with the work that I did while I was on my mission.
That about wraps up this last week here in Gwadloop! :)
Je vous aime!!
Elder Taylor David Dayton