Monday, December 29, 2014

Week 7 in France

 The no bake cookie pictures were just for me.  We sent him the oats and cocoa to make them for the holidays.  So glad he remembered how to mix them together.  Below is his package of treats from grandma and grandpa k.  Quite the package they sent with lots of goodies.

 For ethan...

So our second lesson with Thibaut(T-bow, don't think to hard on this one)  this week was super exciting! He didn't understand why he needed to go to church! So we, as simply as teenagers could, explained that Sunday was special because we take the sacrament on Sunday. We explained that sacrament was a renewal of one of our covenants with god! After explaining what a covenant was we explained that our first covenant is. Baptism! And after explaining what and how a baptism worked we asked Thibaut why he would want to be baptized. He said "to make promises with God".

 After giving the classic " will you follow Jesus and be baptized...." line we spent some time setting a date and explaining minor details! The only thing that I can ask all of my wonderful friends back home is to Pray that Thibaut can feel the spirit when he reads the Book Of Mormon and kick his cigarette smoking. I think dropping the cigarettes will be the hardest for him. He was up to a pack a day at one point, but since he has been cutting down on them his whole body shakes pretty bad.

That was a super high point of the week! It kinda makes everything else kinda dull. I have been using most of my spare time to read Articles of Faith by Talmage. I thought Jesus the Christ talked about deep topics but Articles of Faith is ridiculous! I finished one of the chapters and was just completely stunned. I had to Reread the Entire chapter to understand everything Talmage talked about. I just can't help but be blown away by the fact that Talmage wrote these books 100 years ago. He proves the authenticity of the Book of Mormon using central American Archaeological findings! My confidence that the blue book is 100Percent(sorry I couldn't find the percent sign on these french keybaords) authentic couldn't be stronger.

So Christmas eve we got invited to the D's. We ate So. Much. Food. Not to mention the variety of food here! The French like to eat Seafood for Chirstmas? Who could have guessed! I ate three different types of caviar, four different ways to cook salmon, and two different types of muscles.  I am a missionary, and missionaries eat Everything on their plates. It probably would have been fine if Seour D would have asked if we wanted more food before she dumped heaping piles of fish on our plates. I say all of this in good light! We love the D's, they are the only family in our branch that does member missionary work! 

I love you all, we got our first snow the day after Christmas, Je vous aime! Joyous Noel.

Elder Keller

After skyping with Grant on Christmas day we learned that they did have a couple investigators and so Troy wrote and asked if he could tell us their names so we could also pray for them.  This was the letter he wrote to Troy in reply.

The one constant is change! I love it! Our investigators are Thibaut(pronounced T-bow) and Charlotte, they are living together. We just committed Thibaut to baptism, not sure if Charlotte needs to be baptized. Katy B is a black lady in her 20s and comes to church and reads the blue book but really just needs that final push to get baptized and make the steps. Françis is a black French lawyer who helps immigrants get into the country and makes sure that they can stay in the country by lining up their law papers. He does all of that for free. Françis just needs to read the Book of Mormon; he is a smart man who needs to just read the book and discover how true it is. Those are our consistent investigators.  

Last week we ran into Cyril, a punk teenager who we gave a Book of Mormon too and set up an appointment for the following day. The next day he brought two more friends Benjamin, and Flaurant to the lesson. All three teenagers had scary black shirts with inappropriate logos and such but they all showed a sincere desire to listen to our message. They all took Book of Mormons home and wanted to share it with their families. The real selling point for them was that you found out if the church was true by praying on your own! That was something that all three of them loved about the church. I have been fasting for these kids. I felt a strong connection with them. Pray that we can meet with them again after the holidays and that they will feel the holy ghost when they read the Book of Mormon. 

If you want to pray for Philip-Jacquelyn that would be wonderful. We were just calling people who's numbers the Elders from a few transfers ago had gotten and when passing over Jacquelyn's number Elder Perry told me not to bother calling her. He said last time she got super mad and accused us of being a cult and performing magic on people. But by the time he told me all of that I already had the phone ringing. We waited for the answering machine but then Jacquelyn picked up and, long story short, we gave them the church web address to clear up misconceptions and were having a lesson on Friday! With her Whole Family! 

I am curious dad, so Françis discovered that at one point our church wouldn't let black have the priesthood and the REALLY offended him. He accused our church of being racist and being affiliated with other racist organizations. I was hoping you could explain to me about the whole blacks and the priesthood, the history to that and what cleared that up. I know thats a big topic to cover! 

I love you Father, your voice often echos in my head to stay on task; or fills my head with the words that I should say when speaking to members. 
Your son, Elder Keller

Thursday, December 25, 2014

The week before Christmas

 Ethan and Morgan performing at their Christmas Orchestra Concert.  Beautiful.

Sunday night we had the Tingey Christmas night.  Some musical performances by all of the cousins, gift exchange, ice cream sundays, etc.

Tuesday, after the YW brunch, we picked up Victor and then packed up the car and headed to Idaho to see the Keller cousins.  We spent the night at Lesli's home and were spoiled to wake up to a very yummy breakfast!  We spent some time at Kim Keller's and then headed to Grandma and Grandpa K's for the Christmas Eve festivities.  We had the musical program/talent show, dinner, live nativity, presents from Grandparents and dessert.  Quite the party and after all the girls stood around the piano, playing their instruments and singing pop songs.  So fun to see them hanging out together.

We woke up Christmas morning to skype with Elder Keller.  I had forgot my computer cord, thank heavens we were able to load skype onto Grandma K's ipad!  She saved the day. Our visit with Grant was so sweet and it was so great to see him.  I just love him, he saved the wrapped gifts in his box to open with us, which turned out to be sort of funny because I wrapped a jello box and a jar of peanut butter...  live and learn, next year it will be the cool stuff : ).  We then had a very delicious breakfast at Kim and Sheree's.  They made some really yummy french toast with cream cheese and raspberries inside.  We didn't stay long because it was pretty icy out and we heard it was snowing in Utah.  So we hit the road.  Not too much snow until we hit Ogden, but it was pretty wet and slushy the entire drive.  Glad we were driving while the sun was out.

Low and behold we got home and Santa had already visited our house, it was probably a good thing Tanya had stayed home, for work, to leave a light on for Santa.

Monday, December 22, 2014

Week 6 in France

 We make cookie trains at Christmas every year and Ethan suggested we send Grant the stuff to make trains.  Sweet, but not going to happen (it would weigh too much!).  So we sent him oats and cocoa to make no bake cookies, a Keller favorite.  Looks like he made them : )

He said this is a cat that like to sit on Elder P's back.

The bag of almonds Grandma and Grandpa Keller sent.  He was pretty excited about the almonds.

 Meeting Elder H and David Archuleta.

 Running into Elder C, from our stake.  Again with the blue guitar.

 We sent light up noses in the Christmas package...  and Grant sitting with a cute little santa.

Yah, so for the past few weeks President has been saying that David [Archuleta] would come and Thursday was the day! He sang a bunch of Christmas songs and a song that he wrote for the Meet the Mormons video. He has a really great voice and we all got to shake his hand! I told him about that one time when Momma Keller, Momma Jenson, Hunter Jenson, and I walked in a corn maze of his face. He Laughed pretty hard and just kept saying "Im so sorry! Im SO sorry!" His manager was next to him and laughed a bit too and asked "the corn maze in American Fork?" I said yes and they both laughed a little harder. I think there must have been an inside joke because there is no way it was that funny.

At the David Archeartbreak-uleta concert I GOT TO SEE ELDER C!!!! Yes! I finally got to see my older Trek brother! He gave me a huge hug! It was SO good to finally see him! We exchanged some stories and talked for a while before the concert started! And, dad will be proud of me, I found Elder H! We didn't have a whole lot in common but I told him that our dads know each other! I also asked him if he ever got to ride in the private jet with President Monson. Apparently, thats just something his dad gets to do.

Sorry I wont write much this week, I am saving all the stories and stuff for Skype :) cant wait to see you in a few days!! :D
Love you all! 
Elder Keller

PS I finished Jesus the Christ and President Roney said that if you send me a copy of Articles of Faith by Talmage I can read that too! 

***Grant did send pictures this week, I'll send them out in a separate letter and post on the blog.  Not everyone can get the emails with pictures.  

I had asked him some questions a couple weeks ago & here are his answers:  

I asked how the language was coming along:
Doing Great! Yesterday a lady asked us,P and I, if we would help her carry something somewhere and right before elder P could translate for me I told him I understood everything that she said. We spen ALOT of time with the two future missionaries in the ward and Elder P forces me to talk to them. I have learned a lot about French by doing that. Also by reading EVERY sign and billboard that we pass.I have a little notebook that I collect new french words and then during Language study time P Quizzes me. Often during lunch and dinner Elder P turns on a gospel movie in French and I try to pick up as much Language as I can from that. I asked Elder P how good my French was in comparison to the other three Elders he has trained. He said he trained an Elder who had 4 years of French before the mission and he said that at about week 4 that we were about the same when it came to comprehension and speaking. I would say that I can say a lot, but there is a lot I can not say. During lessons I add 3-4 comments at random points in the lesson, each one being 3-4 sentences(not counting bearing testimony but actual parts of the lesson).

I had heard David Archuleta was going to visit their mission.
Yes I met archuleta

I asked if he received mail or packages.
I received 3 Christmas packages! Two from you and one from Grandma and Grandpa Keller! (and the guitar book! [I sent it through, happy it made it to him] very helpful! all the missionaries and part of the ward are going to play at an old folks home and thanks to that book! The sister who plays the flute can play some songs and we can play some songs on the guitar for them!)

oh, package wise! I LOOOVE your freeze dried potatos! we eat them two to three times a week with a huge stir fry pot of veggies!  Letters are the most valued objects I think. I take the best care of them and they have the most sentimental value to me. We use the Freher fox for role plays! The silly putty was exciting but we play with it to much. The lights and christmas tree were SOOOO COOOOOL! haven't pulled out the little vibrating bugs... those might be really distracting... I use the jump rope 10-20 minuets a day depending on the workouts! I also use Elder P's resistance band A LOT. when he leaves if I could get one of those that would be nice but only if you want! Thankyou for all of the wonderful gifts! I havent opened up the wrapped packages, Ill open those up with the family over skype! Oh and I only opened up one of your brown packages. the one with the Christmas tree, the other is for Christmas day!

do you think you can send Articles of Faith by Amazon?

I love you and all your beautiful motherlyness! sorry if there R Tons of type Os ;)
I love you! 
Elder KEller