Monday, July 23, 2012

Avignon 5 July 23rd

Hello everyone!  So real quick to the questions!

    Zone conferences are usually mostly in French, but there are parts
in English as well.  SO both... really depending on how the person

    The Roneys have two little boys with them (10 and 12 years old I
think) one who just got back from a mission going to BYU, and a son
and a daughter on a missoion... I think.  At least a daughter.

    Yeah with the weight loss I can do a lot more things without
getting tired.  I have still stayed at the same weight, but my waist
size has gone down.  I have been doing lots of weight lifting, so I
hope it is starting to build muscle.

    My shoes are doing fine.  Starting to crack a little at the ball
of the foot, but still good.  The destroyed shooes were Elder Bell's
old pair.

    I loved the Bday package!  Thank you so much, and it is Ok that
you didn't find all the cat shirts, you sent the best one.  Guess
what, that shirt is pretty big on my now ha ha.  I loved the cat card
the most.  It took me a long time to figure out what the green and
pink things were saying.  Make sure to pass the thank you to Bruce and
Robin as well for their card! also they sent me a check... can you
cash those in other countries? There are no Wellsfargos here.

    President and Soeur Roney already had everyone's names memorised
when we first saw them, and yes, they did mention that they knew
president Hunt.

    I study in French, outside the apartement we speak french (except
P-day), I write in my journal in French a lot, some of it every day,
and I dream in French, I already have trouble talking to people who
speak english because even among other missionaries, we speak
Franglais.  It is interesting, but I still remember english pretty
well =)

    I'll tell you what I did for my birthday in the daily section.

    We do interviews for zone conference usually every other or every
third zone conference, so next time we won't have them.  Usually they
only last about 5 minutes an interview because there are a lot of

    I titled the email that because they call the wind here "le
mistrale" in english, the title is "the mistrale is angry at us".  For
some reason, the wind from the Rhône and the wind from the mountains
mix here, and it gets really windy some times.  This whole weekend was
constant strong wind, crazy!  All the flyers for the plays that were
put up everywhere are now scattered par tout!  The centre ville is a
mess, but there wasn't any damage or anything.

Monday:  Elder Hamilton's birthday! I bought a shirt, and then we saw
the fun street performances the rest of the day.  (today monday we are
going to a big shopping district to get some suit pants for real.)

Teusday:  We saw Mme Didier, a french woman contacted by the
missionaries a couple months ago who said we  could come over.  She is
some yoga instructor who worships "l'âme" some bhuddist cult thing.
Anyway, she talked again about how love is everything and all the
churches are right and all lead to God, we left her 2nephi 32 to read
which says how you have to be baptised and recieve the holy ghost to
be saved... we'll see what she thinks about that probably this week.
After we saw Sylvan the cool member guy for an FHE, and  then Elsy a
new ami from cameroone I believe, she was fine, we have tried to
contact her since, but no luck... we'll see on that too.

Wednesday:  We worked in Villeneuve then taught Fr, Jeunehomme a less
active member about forgiveness, taught English class (we are getting
7 or 8 people every week now, that is a lot better than what it used
to be... 0) Then we taught Quansah tithing and fasting, he was totally
Ok with it, he is so freaking cool!

Thursday:  District meeting.  it was fine, it was about finding people
again, how to serve, endear, and teach people in about 15 seconds.
Then Elder Hamilton and I went to Vitrolles with the elders there for
an exchange.  I got to be in the companionship with the car, and I
hate it, I feel like I waste so much time driving around.  We had a
good lesson with some friends of a member.  I also got a call from
President Roney reminding me that it was my birthday.  he said, "what
are you doing to celebrate?  Tracting?"  he is so funny.  The Aix
elders made me cookies at district meeting.

Friday:  We spent the last night at vitrolles, our train left aroun 1
oclock, so we went to KFC for a real american lunch, also because it
was Elder Hamilton's and my birthday week.  European KFC is pretty
good, I would say better quality chicken, but smaller... and it is the
only restaurant in europe that offers free refils!
Back in Avignon, we had a cool miracle with a brazilian guy walking
out of his apartement, actually it wasn't even where he lived, and he
told us that the night before he was praying for help and guidance
from God.  We took his number and will see him ... maybe tomorrow, His
name is Marcos.  Another Brazilian girl was walking into her
appartement and told us  in very broken French that her brother was
about to go on a mission, and that we should come back another time.

Saturday:  Went to Vedène to work, saw Didier, who is basically a
member who keeps all the commanaments and knows it is all true, but
isn't baptised because he lives with his girlfriend although they say
they keep the law of chastity, he just isn't humble enought to move
out yet. they would be married, but there is a personal problem that
will hopefully resolve soon.

Sunday:  Taught Quansah chastity, and now he knows all he needs to to
get baptised!  6more days!  Then we passed that brazilian girl we met
a couple days ago.  She and three brazilian friends  were their,
invited us in, and fed us dinner!  They are so nice, but it was a
little intimidating at first because all of them are in the foreign
legion, so they are all huge and buff, but like I said, they are
really cool.  We talked about a lot of things, which eventually led to
the book of Mormon, they gladly accepted a copy and said, "any time
you want to come back, it will be a pleasure to have you!"  I love
brazilians!  They fed us rice and meatballs with sauté green beans and
other veggies.  You would have loved it Dad!

That's all I really have time to write!  Je vous aime tous!  Soyez
fidèle dans la foi!  Dieu vie! J'espère que tout se passe bien là-bas,
et que monte a eu un bon anniversaire!  Rappelez-lui que je le
donnerai un beef-tech quand je rentre.  Que Dieu vou benisse!  Ciao!

Avignon 4

The lame computer logged me out again, but it is ok because I just
started writing my email this time.
Yes I have had several madelines, they are really good;

The branch president gave us appricots, peaches and figs, and we have
also gotten tomatoes and pizzas from people (how they got pizza to
grow in their garden, I do not know)

The festivale goes to the 20th I think, or one more week or something,
but it is still going on right now.  It is getting kind of annoying
now, because it is kind of interrupting the work.

I got some hot new jeans last week, but not a new suit because
european pant legs are really really tight, the waist fits me fine,
but i can barely get the pants over my legs.  We are going to look in
other stores today though, there are bigger people than me who wear
suits here, so they have to exist somewhere.

I get a weekly email from Travis still.  He is doing well, he got
transfered to northern Rostov.

Quansah is getting baptised the 28th of July, and there is something
that is really cool that happened at church.  He came to church with
his two kids as usual.  We asked him how he was, and he said fine,
except he had a "petit souci" a little problem.  He then showed us an
email from his ex-wife's lawer saying how she didn't want her kids
participating in the mormon religeon.  Now Quansah is going to have to
do some legal junk because he wants his kids to be baptised, but more
than that, he wants his kids to choose for themselves.  The cool thing
is he told us that this is just another sign that he is on the right
path, because with righeous living always comes opposition.  He is
amazing, and the most prepared person I have met on my mission so far.
I hope that the thing with his kids and ex gets worked out soon and

I met the president at our zone conference last teusday, and I can
write about that in the "what elder crossman has done today" part of
my email

Monday:  Taught a new lady about the plan of salvation, and she told
us about her weird buddist cult thing she was in where this guy Swami
Roberto or rodrigo or something is the reencarnated Christ, and that
how all religeons are good because they all lead to God and that the
only thing that god has ever asked us to do is be nice and lovey dovey
to everyone.  we were polite, but she was more interested in
converting us than hearingn about our message.  Very nice woman
though, and she gave us some pineapple juice that was incredible, I
wanted to ask her where she got it, but I didn't...  Then we helped a
less-active clean his appartement. After helping him we tried to teach
the word of wisdome, which he thought was "don't drink... too much,
and don't smoke... that often... and that it would be nice if you
didn't drink coffee or tea, but a little is good for you, but hard
drugs are not acceptable"  we tried to tell him that is was actually
none of any of those substances, but he didn't want to listen... sigh,
I love him though.

Teusday: Zone conference with the Roney family!  It was great and
really inspiring like all the other zone conferences I have had.  This
one though seemed to ... hmm, how do I want to describe it.  President
Roney has some very high hopes for this mission, and he is confidant
that we are going to see some great miracles ahead of us.  They
presented, or retaught about the importance of members, and "loving
people" into the church.  We talked about how to help make church, a
celestiale experience.  I really feel that great things are going to
happen, and I am excited for it.  Just pour vous dire, his goal is to
quadruple baptisms in the mission.  It is a bold goal, but God is
capable of all things, and we are going to work hard to achive it.
President Roney is really cool and down to earth, and his family is a
lot of fun too. I played catch with their youngest son and a couple
other missionaries after zone conference.

Wednesday: I was in Aix again for exchange!  we did quite a bit of
contacting, then taught English class, and taught Irma and her
daughters again, that was nice because I was not able to see them
before I got moved to Avignon, and I was able to tak e a picture with
them, so you guys will see it... eventually ha ha.

Thursday:  Went back to Avignon.  and did lots of porting ha ha

Friday:  We went to a town called Le Thor, and passed a couple people
who said they were interested a while ago, and a member, and a couple
less actives... none of them were there.  We ended up getting some
good exercize though, we probably walked over five miles.  Le Thor is
a tiny tiny country town, so we probably won't go back for a long

Saturday:  Again nothing but contacting the whole day.  We were
feeling kinda down, so we decided to treat ourselves to a soda at
Subway, the only place in France with free refills.  We sat at the bar
looking out into the street trying to make people smile, figuring
spreading joy was good, and it made us feel better.  Then one of our
old amis passed by and saw us, so we started talking to him and were
able to set up a rendez-vous.  I love inspiered drink breaks ha ha.

Sunday:  <<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<church, quansah, the
Ughettos (the family who's kid got baptised the other week) and yet
more contacting.

I love you all very much.  I know that God lives, I also know that the
adversary is doing all that he can to keep the work from progressing.
It can be really difficult to keep going, but it is so worth it.  I
know that we really are nothing, but for some reason God still loves
us, and we are still important for him.  I know he will forgive us
whatever we do.  I wrote down a few quotes this week that I heard and
liked, and I would like to share them with you:

"Giving up is denying God's power"  --one of the quorum of the twelve
(i forget which)
"never give up, never surrender!" --galaxy quest
"Contacting is FUN!" --Elder Hamilton

I love you all.  till next week!  Keep dating everyone JJ!

Monday, July 9, 2012

Avignon 3

Salut tout le monde!, here are the answeres to the questions:
I know nothing about the tour de france... sorry, but I think the olympics will be in Paris this year right?  Or maybe London...
Yes Quansah, and his two kids came to church.  He was telling everybody that it will be his turn to be baptised in two weeks!  He is so cool.  i could see his daughter getting baptised in the next transfer or so as well, so there is lots happening here in Avignon.
There is only me and Elder Hamilton in Avignon, and our area covers all the way north to Orange (a great little city, we have worked there a few times) and all the way south to ... Arelles I think.  So it is a really big area.  Usually we work in the little villages just outside of Avignon.
Our appartement is not fixed.  we called the office  and they said they would get back to us.  We might get if fixed some time before the year ends... if they hurry.
MONDAY:Did some lovely porting.  Played a game of RISK, and walked around town.  Soldes starts this week so I didn't buy anything that day.
Tuesday:  Went to Mont Fevet to work, nothing too speciale.  Then we had an FHE with Sylvain one of the cool young people in our branch. 
Wednesday;  Worked in the morning in Villeneuve, we found a really cool mother with three kids who was interested!  wooh, there are people who want to talk to us!  What was really cool is I was imagining earlier that morning finding a young mother with black hair and three kids.. and she fit the description.  It was a really cool experience.
Then we went to le pontet where are church is, and talked to some muslims, taught our english class and taught the gospel of Jesus Christ to Quansah afterward.
Thursday:  Had the Baptismal interview for Cyprien, then I went to Aix again for exchange.  I was able to work with Elder Tulley who was in the MTC with me.  It was a fun exchange, no real big news.  I was able to talk to some of the members who were confused because they had thought I left ha ha.
Friday:  Back in Avignon in the morning to have lunch with our Branch president.  He is a little... harsh with this jokes, but I still like him.  He has like an entire orchard in his back yard, and he gave us a bunch of fruit.  We worked a bit in Orange (where he lives) then took the train back to see Frère Jeunehomme a less active member... and his cat.  We had a good talk about obedience, and he said he would come to church this week (he didn't...)
Saturday.  Weekly planning!  Then we had a baptism!  Cyprien and his cousin were baptised!  It was really cool and went smoothly.  It was my first baptism where the I didn't have to do anything, and nobody yelled at us because nothing went wrong yeah!  Really good time, Quansah and his kids came, and he was telling everyone it will be his turn soon, and his daughter was asking about baptism too!  Reallly fun.  then we had dinner with the family and played sptitunk... which is like shuffle board only you throw balls instead of.. shuffling a puck.  I believe in english it is called boules.  I also learned what hide and go seek is in french.  it is cache cache en noir.  And hide and seek tag is cache cache touche touche, it is cute isn't it?
Sunday, Church, ate, talked to lots of people, oh, and the theatre festivale started... It started saturday, but we were out of town all day.  It is now nuts here.  Tons and tons and tons of people and weirdos in costumes walking all over.  The entier city is covered in adverisements for all the plays... most of them have no nudity.  There are a group of asians who parade outside our appartement banging drums and gongs and such every few hours.  Mobs and mobs of people.  It is crazy.  P-days look like they are going to be fun ha ha.  I just need to make sure I don't get pick-pocketed.  Then that evening we taught Qwami, an african homeless guy who we have seen a few times.  He actually has a job now, so that is good, but he cancles pretty much every rdv.  He was about 35 minutes late to this one.  anyway it went well.
Another thing about the festivale, there is supposidly over .. or maybe close to 1000 productions in all of avignon.  It is huge, though most of the theaters only sit 20 to 30 people.  I don't know if we will see any or not.  There are lots of free stuff just playing on the street too, so maybe we'll look into that.
I love you all very much, and I miss you!  I love my mission and am reading my scriptures and se rapproching to the lord every day.  It is amazing to see all the little miracles that he gives us, and the big ones too.  I know that the promise "ask and you shall recieve, search and it shall be given you, knock and it shall be opened to you" is true if we ask in faith with a pure intent.  I love the poeple of avignon, even the weird theatre people.  I'll see you all next week!
Also, parents, thank you in advance for the birthday stuff, it will be well appreciated.  I am sorry to hear that robin still is feeling bad, I'll be sure to pray for her.  I love you too Bruce and Robin and Brett, and everyone else.  I don't have enough time to write all your names, but you know who you are.  Have a good week!