Wednesday, September 28, 2016

28 Sept 2016 - Week 46: BONJOUR!

Hi everyone!

I'm just gonna send y'all a quick little email because the cyberbase is closing early today. :( 

Just know that I'm doing great. Even though we've have lots of things get cancelled this week, we still had a pretty awesome miracle! The other week, we found Malia while we were looking for an inactive family. The missionaries had taught them YEARS ago (probably at least 15 years). We were definitely guided to her, and we went and taught her on Monday. She just opened up to us about the financial struggles they've been having and how she was feeling that God had abandoned her. But because we were there, she realized that God had sent us to her to comfort and help her. We're really hoping she's ready now to accept the Gospel, even though 15 years ago she wasn't. And we're hoping to get to teach her, her husband, and their son. We know already that they have a lot of faith and rely on prayer a lot. Also, they still have their cantique (hymn book) from before, and they like to sing the hymns they know when they need a boost. So miracle that we found her and miracle if they end up getting baptized!!

Oh, and Soeur Kelekele, an inactive member, came to church on Sunday! Woo hoo! :) 

And now I'm out of time :( 

Je vous aime!!! Merci pour tous les emails! Bonne semaine!! 
[I love you! Thanks for the all the emails! Have a good week!]

Soeur Matheson

Tuesday, September 20, 2016

21 September 2016 - Week 45: Find Like Crazy!

Bonjour! Ca va?

Thanks for all the birthday wishes! I had a great birthday! it was a normal missionary day, but I opened my presents and a lot of the missionaries called me and sang to me in French, English, and Tahitian, haha, that was awesome. Mom, I love the dragon! C'est tres mignon! We didn't make the cake yet because on my birthday another set of sisters made a cake for me, so we were a little caked out. We're saving it for a special occasion.

So our catchphrase for September is "find like crazy!" because we're getting ready for the month of miracles in October! And this week we have a lot of stuff in the works because we were finding like crazy last week. But we weren't finding in the normal way--contacting. We were working with the list of sisters in the ward searching for inactives. As we were looking, we found some old amis that used to be taught by the missionaries. We're hoping to be able to teach them and that they'll be ready for baptism in October! Also, another inactive sister (who's gonna come back to church on Sunday!) told us that her daughter's husband and his parents are interested in learning about the Gospel, so we're having a big soiree tomorrow night with them. Yay for potential amis! :) Oh yeah, and there's a member who lives in our same apartment building whose husband isn't a member, but she said we can plan a soiree and see how that goes! So for us, the more effective way to find is through the members, so we're working on that and our relationships with the members.

Our amis with the baptismal date, the Falevalu family, are doing better and working their way toward baptism. They have to quit smoking--that's the biggest problem. But the mom and the daughter came to church on Sunday (we actually walked with them, so that was awesome). The daughter loved it, and the mom received a testimony during Sacrament meeting that she needs to join the church and she needs to make the necessary changes to do that. The crazy thing is that right after she had that experience and made that decision, her neck suddenly got all stiff and blocked up so that she could barely move. She feels like it was Satan trying to attack her and stop her from changing. I'm so happy that she was able to recognize the difference between the Spirit and Satan. And I think now that she's had this testimony, she'll be more able to quit smoking. And the dad has taught himself to read and he's been reading the Bible in Futunian. We challenged him also to try reading the Book of Mormon in Tongan. There's no translation of the BoM in Wallisian or Futunian (yet), but Tongan is pretty close so he'd be able to understand well enough. It's just a little progress, but I know that if they continue and if they ALL come to church on Sunday, they WILL be ready FINALLY for baptism in October! Miracles!

So we're excited because there's a lot of stuff in the works this month with amis that could potentially get baptized in October! We just need to keep working and keep believing in miracles! :)

Je vous aime tous!!! Merci beaucoup pour votre soutien! [Thanks for your support!] :)

Soeur Matheson

This is from when we went to the WWII museum with our district!
We found some really good strawberry eclairs! Yum!

Cute gifts from mes soeurs for my birthday

Soeur Caress in the Yaris

14 September 2016 - Week 44: Staying in Magenta! And a lesson with the Ghandi of Lifou :)

Bonjour ma famille!! Ca va?

Donc, we got the transfer news and I'm staying in Magenta with Soeur Caress! So still STLs and all that, too, haha. Things are going a lot better here in our little secteur and I'm excited to stay and see what else we can accomplish here during this transfer! 

So this last week, we had a district activity and we went to the WWII museum and it was pretty cool. New Cal was affected a lot by the war because the US used it as a naval base. In fact, people here still really love Americans because of all the help the US gave back in the day, haha. So when people find out you're american, they immediately love you. JK not really but the people here super like America. Anyway, during the war was when there was all of the culture-mixing because a lot of people came/were brought here during the war. And now there's still tons of "metissage" (mixed races/cultures) because of the war.

This week went a lot better in terms of missionary work! We were able to see a lot more inactives and actually we have been teaching this inactive man who's from Samoa but joined the Samoan circus when he was younger and then he met his wife (who's from New Cal) when she went to see the circus. They got married in Vegas, haha, and they have a little boy and they live here in New Cal. He works for her father building houses and they're also renovating a house for them in Robinson. The funny thing is is that he doesn't speak much French so we talk to him and teach him in English and it's WEIRD! But also fun to see what it's like to teach in my native language. And if y'all are wondering, I feel like it's way too easy to teach in English because I can actually say all the words I want to, haha. Anyway, this inactive really wants to come back to church and do the right thing, but his wife and family in law don't really want to have anything to do with the Gospel, so it's hard for him to get to church and all that. But he's really trying and it's so great! 

We also finally got to see a recent convert that was baptized in July by the other sisters. He's a fisherman and he works out at sea for about 15 days at a time and then "on earth" for 3-4 days, so it's hard to get a hold of him and know if he's en mer ou sur terre, haha. But we finally got to see him and he's solid! 

Oh yeah, on Monday, we were going to see an inactive sister but we ended up knocking on the wrong door (don't know if it was just us being dumb or if it was divine intervention) and this big guy from Tiga (an island next to Lifou) opens the door. Definitely not the little inactive sister we were expecting, haha. We were kinda flustered and awkward and were just gonna say, "Oh sorry, we knocked on the wrong door" and leave, but he recognized us as Mormon missionaries and he said he wanted to talk with us. Woo hoo! So we scheduled a time to come back later in the day, went to the lesson with the inactive, called a member to come with us to the lesson with the man we met (and it's so cute because this mami is always so willing to help us out), and we went to the lesson. It turns out this guy really likes studying philosophy and religion a lot and the lesson was a little all over the place but we invited him to read the Book of Mormon and pray about it. So hopefully we'll have a new ami who progresses!! 

We have big goals for the month of October/the month of miracles and so September is supposed to be a big finding and preparation month for that. We need to find like crazy! Soeur Caress and I have had to drop amis and others are still not really progressing and we want to find the elect! So we are making goals to get out and find and do all we can to have miracles! :) 

Oh and to explain the "Ghandi of Lifou" thing: The mami that came with us to our lesson is Soeur Waia and she's from Lifou. Apparently she was involved in some non-violent protests/resistance in Lifou (like front lines) and people called her Ghandi, haha. She was telling us the story and she was like, "They were calling me Ghandi and I don't even know who that is!" So funny :) But honestly you would never think she'd be part of that kind of thing because she's so small and nice and cute. 

So I hope y'all are doing well!! Thanks for all the birthday wishes and the love! I'm excited to open my package, haha! I've been waiting for weeks! :)

JE VOUS AIME!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Soeur Matheson

Wednesday, September 7, 2016

7 September 2016 - Week 43: Not lots of time to write!


So I don't have tons of time to write (comme d'hab) but I will do my best to fill you in! 

We had zone conference Monday and Tuesday with President and Sister Granger and the APs. It was great and definitely inspired by the Spirit! None of the things were new concepts, but definitely a much-needed reminder of the things I need to do to be a fantastic missionary and have miracles. Our goal for the month of October is 180 baptisms within the mission, and in New Cal the goal is 25! We believe we can do it! We have a month to be finding, teaching, and preparing our amis for baptism in October. Last Wednesday, we actually set a baptism date for a family of 3 (mom, dad, daughter) for October 8! We are so ready to help them change and be ready, but they still need to put in a little more work on their part. We were going to walk with them to church on Sunday, but when we got to their house, they wouldn't answer the door or their phones.... Depressing, but I don't want to give up on them!

Last week we also decided to drop some amis who are "eternal amis" or have been taking the lessons and not progressing at all. So fewer lessons and more finding. But yesterday, we actually chased down a lady to go talk to her and it wasn't totally awkward and she was super nice. Not interested, but nice. But now I know that it's not too awkward to chase people down, and if that's what we need to do, we're gonna do it!

So there has been a change in rules about using cyberbases outside of our secteur so I may or may not be able to email next week. President is making a decision about that and we'll know soon. But if I can't email, I'll write a letter! haha

Je vous aime beaucoup!! Vous me manquez! Et joyeuse anniversaire Charlotte!! Bonne semaine!!!!
[I love you all so much!! I miss you! And happy birthday, Charlotte!! Have a good week!!!]

Soeur Matheson

Pics from Zone Conference:

New Caledonia Missionaries
Photo credit: Sis. Granger

My district (plus the Glades)
All the New Cal missionaries

All my Tahitian soeurs!!
The South zone (laughing uproariously at something!)