Tuesday, May 3, 2016

Week 95 "Visiting Tours, Bourges, and Blois"

May 2, 2016

This week we traveled to four different cities. Here are some of the many adventures!
        Tours: Working far from Paris means that President and Sister Babin came out to Tours to interview us, and observe our district meeting. Taking the train south of Blois we arrived in Tours a few hours early, just enough time to do some contacting, see some sights, and grab lunch at a little Chinese restaurant. Later that afternoon I met a Sister missionary from my Grandparents ward (Jones side), and that was a great coincidence. I loved interviews with President Babin. I have had some questions for quite a while that he helped me resolve....... he and his wife are just great!

 Bourges: We also call it Bourgeous, 
(Bourges + Gorgeous = Bourgeous). A beautiful city with lots of cobblestone and really French people.  We came to help the Elders there to find some new investigators, and we found a few people despite some really hard rejection from others.  The thing I like most about Bourges is the Chorizo Bread, it's an indispensable item at each of our district meals.  I had always wanted to come here because my previous elder Smith companion (Devyn Smith) and my trainer Elder Johnson had served here and really loved it.  I didn't get to spend that much time there but I enjoyed the finding day all the same.

        That night we received an emergency assignment from the Sisters to create a big publicity on a four-by-eight foot board advertising genealogy through the FamilySearch.org website.  So Elder Pro and I went to work and four hours later we had created an awesome design for this board, we finished at 10:00pm and got home around 10:15....just dead tired.  We had to cram on the board because the Sisters needed to set it up the following morning for their finding day in Orleans.  7:30amafter sleeping two nights on a leaky air mattress we packed up and took the train to Orleans for our second finding day in a row.
Here's a picture of some church members in Orleans working at the
apple crate stand.

        It was pretty funny how the day played out.  First we got to the church, finalized this giant Board for FamilySearch, then drove out to the public market where we planned to set up the advertisement for FamilySearch.  Two downsides: one, it started to rain and with no tent we had to set up our stand under a bridge; two, nobody had considered what we would put the stand on. From the looks of things we were about to be four confused Mormons under a bridge with a giant display on the concrete ground - kind of pitiful to imagine -  But I wouldn't let it happen.  We walked through the market thinking of how to get a table, and eventually we were able to bargain with a lady selling apples to use her empty crates to set up the stand: haha, innovation!  So you
will see the attached picture of our big display board sitting on stacks of apple crates - and the best part is that people actually stopped to look at it and the members did most of the talking to people!
        That was just the beginning of our Orleans adventures.  The afternoon began and we split off with a group of youth to contact people in the center of town.  At first the two teenagers I was with, were really reluctant, but as we got going, they got pumped and started talking to people too.  We met a really cool girl who seemed down on her luck, so
we introduced the Book of Mormon, and though she seemed suspicious at first we clarified some false rumors she had heard about it and she accepted to read the Book!   It was cool seeing the teenagers I worked with really enjoy talking to people and see how happy missionary work makes you and other people.  I will say it stressed all of us out to contact down the main street with hordes of people; things got better as we got onto more quiet roads.  All in all we had a blast in Orleans!
Beautiful Hidden Passage-Way in Blois 

        We made it back to Blois by the end of the week, just enough time to weekly plan, teach a lesson, and contact on the street. Let me talk a little about the fun event we had at the other end of the week. The Decaux (pronounced DayCo) family invited us to a multi-family dessert/game night and encouraged us to invite as many amis as possible; out of the five we invited three came, and we taught them all about the Book of Mormon and the Plan of salvation.  Then I showed
them how to play telestrations and everyone there laughed really hard.
Elder Jones kicking a dandelion to Elder Smith 

        You've seen the highlights of our week, I'm just going to share a part of the week that was more of a struggle to victory.  Over the past while I've had a great struggle with learning to follow and deal with spiritual feelings.  Whether it's from Heaven above or my own thoughts has made me feel some anxiety, and I've prayed for a lot of help.  I've also sought help from my parents, my companion and other
trusted leaders.  I'll tell you that for a conflict that seemed large, the response to my call for help seemed bigger and made my problems feel very small.  I say this so you all know that if you have a difficulty, ASK FOR HELP.  Satan wants you to think you can do it alone. That's a lie.  Our Father in Heaven is willing to help you through all of your challenges, every one!  I think the main things I've learned through all of this are: One, you cannot force the spirit. Two, Be Thou Humble, and the Lord thy God will lead thee.
I love you all!
Have A Great Week!!!
Elder Jamison Jones

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