Monday, July 1, 2013

Oui Je Suis Dans Belgium! Semaine 7 (Yes, I am in Belgium! Week 7)

The Mission President, His Wife and me!
Eating Chinese Food in Paris! Crazy!
Finding out my new companion, Elder Davis
Hey everyone!  I made it to Paris and now Belgium!

Monday and Tuesday were days full of traveling.  Plane food was not so great but the 10 hour flight wasn't bad at all.  People thought I was funny using the face mask and earplugs but it helped me get a couple of hours of sleep!

After we arrived we picked up our luggage, exchanged our currency and then met our Mission President on the curb.  With fresh "Pain au chocolate" we found out we would be going to the metro, which is 100 times crazier than any subway in New York, and started contacting.  Elder Rigsby and I contacted a man on the subway and had a 40 minute conversation with him as we made our way into the city.  He took our card but was shocked there were missionaries in France and asked us if we knew the history of France?

We then made our way to the church in central Paris known as Saint Mary. (picture of us in front of the church in blog last week)  It is the 2nd most expensive property the church owns in the world!  It has secret passages, chains in the basement and is used as a chapel and visitor center.   We all so tired and tried hard not to fall asleep as they told us about the church.

Next we had interviews, chinese food and then the Soeurs went to the mission home and the Elders went to a hotel to sleep.  I was asleep in minutes!

Wednesday we work up and had some fresh baguettes and pastries at the hotel and then made our way to Consecration Hill, or Saint Germaine, where you commit yourself to the "work" and set your goals,  It looks over the city of Paris and was absolutely gorgeous.  We made our way back to Saint Mary to find out where we were going and who our new companion would be.  We had a little extra time so we stopped at Notre Dame - oh the perks of being in Paris!

My new companion and trainer is Elder Davis from Seattle, Washington.  He's been out since December and will be great.  We get along and he'll be a great companion to get started.  We found our area is Strombeek or Brussels, Belgium!  We are opening a new companionship here so we have not investigators, no lessons and an empty area book.  On top of that I'm a bleu (or greenie).  We are living in a brand new apartment with 2 other Elders - 1 is the District Leader.  They were putting together furniture as we arrived.  It's a great apartment, known as the mansion, and right by a park..  That night we scavenged for food and had 30 minutes to get to the know the area before we were due back.  We ran into a man, Zack, and he was interested and so we taught him a lesson right there on the street.  We got a "follow up" so that was cool!

Thursday, Friday and Saturday consisted of lots of contacting since we didn't have any appointments.  There are lots of African-Americans here and I love them!  They are so believing and as soon as you mention Jesus they love you too!  We found 11 people on Thursday - all African-Americans.  The French just put up there hand and say, "I don't believe", or "I don't have time" or walk by without saying anything.

On Friday we had another "8:55" miracle with a man named Phillipe.  After lots of rain, bible bashing, and Muslims that we can't really talk to it was amazing how the Lord put Phillipe in our path.  I know as we work hard and are obedient we will be lead to those people that want to hear the gospel.

Saturday we taught two lessons in peoples homes.  It's amazing how small their places are and how humble they are.  Finally, after hours of contacting I decided I needed a coke and a "Pain au Chocolate".  It was the most delicious coke I have ever had!

Sunday are different here.  Belgium is known as "the melting pot of the world" for languages.  Most people speak English, which makes learning French hard, but is cool to be able to participate more.  I'd say its about 50% French and 50% English.  Our ward is full of people who work for the European Union and NATO.  For 3 hours I introduced myself first in English and then in French.  The church is a real church building, which is rare, and is really nice.  There were probably 80 to 100 people at church.  We also taught Phillipe again too!

Today is PDay.  We had studies, cleaning and went shopping for groceries.  We are going to go eat at the Grand Complace after shopping.  It's "Soldes" here right now so everything is a killer deal - 10 ties for 15 euros, sweet!  We had 2 missed calles fom Amis today.  Adalbert, who asked for a Book of Mormon and then called and said, "Me and my family will be home tonight and want you to come teach us the word of God."

It's been a busy few days but I can already see miracles and feel the spirit.  Can't wait for the weeks ahead!  I hope you all have a great 4th of July - we'll be celebrating here too!  Love hearing from all of you.  Here is my address in Belgium:

Les Missionaires
Elder Chase Player
11, Ave des Gloires Nationales
1081 Koekelberg

Supposedly it takes about 7 days for something to get here.  Thanks for all of your love and support!  Till next week...

Elder Player

Notre Dame

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