Typed from a handwritten letter posted 9/29/2014 ( the French portion was typed by Rob as it made more sense to him!)
Chere Mere & Cher Pere,
I haven't written a letter to you for a while, so I thought I would update you! The weather is getting colder here! It really does remind me of Oregon here. I love it. I just need to figure out my boot situation lol. So this week has been super stressful, not because of anything other than transfers, as far as amis go , it could not get any better! We have 8 new amis, 2 in progress and 1 ami with a date for baptism! So between that and Soeur Tupai and I getting along so well and being so comfortable in Nogent we're so so stressed we will be transfered! Tonight we get phone calls from President and the APs if we have responsibilities this next transfer ( i.e. trainer, STL) So super nervous, this is one reason: at legality ( OFII the medical apt that makes us legal for living in France) S Erickson got a call from President saying her trainer is becoming an STL and she's getting a new trainer and a visa waiter franc phone so she'll be in a trio! Anyway he told her that this transfer will be crazy and everyone practically is changing because the old Mission Pres Poznanski got a call from church headquarters saying our mission has the possibility to hold 300 missionaries. ( we only have 230 now) and a ton are leaving because they all came in the waves of age change. So they're sending in more missionaries than missionaries here, so he has to open up a ton of new places and take every trainer possible for these next two transfers because so many missionaries are coming into the mission! Its so good, but stressing me out so much! So we shall see what happens! But that and in our formation ( announcements) from Pres. he said EVERY missionary needs to be ready for transfer week so it will go smoothly, which was a surprise because he usually doesn't talk like that. I just really want to stay in Nogent. I love the people " my africans" LOL, I'm used to them , the place, I love being in Paris! I love my trainer! Ahhhha! Oh, but I think all the stress is making me lose weight! We went to OFII and I think I've lost a couple lbs…hope lol.
Well its the next morning, last night no phone call! Yah! We went to the Paul Cardell concert! We took our amis. It was so great, he plays so well, and has a very cool life story. Went great with his testimony. I'm so happy here in Nogent, there is so much going on and so many people to teach, and S Tupai is just an amazing missionary that has helped me in every way. I want to be in Paris for fall/winter and Christmas, how cool would that be?
Ah! Ok this next sunday is missionary Sunday in the ward so I just have to speak in French about the Restoration, so not looking forward to that… but its ok, hope all is doing good there in Oregon. How is everything? How are the pups? Is Moki still with us? lol. Its weird I'm already on my 2nd transfer! Time is flying by! Is almost October! C'est FOU! I think my comprehension of French is coming along a lot better than I thought, I'm understanding more and more! Even when they talk super fast I can finally make out a little of what they're saying! I just really need to work on vocabulary. I need flashcards or something- IDK. Still thinking about how I can improve. I'm about 1/2 way through Jesus the Christ. Its a really good book , I've loved it.
The hardest part of teaching investigators is they always say " I've already been baptized" Nobody here understands the Priesthood! Its really sad, but given me a great testimony of it and it' power.
Ok back again, just got the official transfer list and I am so happy to be staying put. Although now I know it will be my last transfer with her. OUr district haws 2 new missionaries Elder Ruttan left so we have a new zone leader Elder Mattson, and Gaule and Powelson are in a trio with a franca phone visa waiter Elder Taochy. We're so excited to meet everyone and that is all about the same almost! Next transfer will be crazy because elder meg, Powelson, and S Tupai are leaving! 2 sisters in my group had to train this transfer! But they're in small towns not Navigo zones. I think when you are in Navigo you stay for a long time so I will probably stay in /around Paris for 6-8 months is my guess. I also keep asking to stay here lol. Theres always something to do, and I can get close with the headquarters so when I want to leave one can pretty much choose where lyon want to go. Ok so beyond that, it finally feels good to know people! Whooo!
We have so many amis that we know are just ready for baptism and we think this month will be awesome for it!
Ok, now some of the daily things I forget to say in emails:
- all the RER's/Metros have jungles and S. Tupai and I have memorized them all lol.
-the names here are crazy!
-Africans wear bobo's ( traditional clothing) and want to give us some ( kind want one)
-A lot of people here speak Portugese
-A lot of street vendors selling grilled corn.
-Nobody in the mission know where Nogent is, they just call it Paris East lol
-We have district meetings every week in Paris Lilas ghetto with the Elders, they're hilarious and we're all super close.
Teaching families is my favorite thing to do!
-I'm getting more used to the food here, learning to love it ( i.e. the bread diet)( horrible milk).
- I absolutely love the city! I love the big villas!
-I still can't get used to the euros coins here, but trying.
-the language really is beautiful and learning to love it.
-the worst thing is getting on RER/Bus/Metro to a warm wet seat…or it being 8:30 and I'm in the south which takes 1 hour by RER to home and having the RER come late because it broke(happens quite frequently)…thus forgetting reading materials because nobody is ever outside here after 8:00…it's the ghetto lol
-the best are the stories with Africans trying to pass through the same stall/ticket line as you.
-I've been hit by many a metro door/once there was a swinging door and it swung back right as i lifted my hand and cracked all my knuckles…that one was the worst…or having the Navigo not register as you run into the bar and break your pelvis, Sis. Tupai has got that on lockdown(I think those are the best Metro doors because Sis. Tupai and I just laugh at each other when it happens.
-everyone who meets me wants to know if I'm from Utah too when I say no they are alway happy to meet someone from another place lol.
-Ok now I will bear my testimony in french because it might be language study and I need to work…lol much love Soeur Stevens.
Je voudrais rendre ma temoinage, je suis que Dieu nous aimons et dieu et Jesus Christ vivre aujourd hui au travers l'expiation nous pourrons vivre avec Dieu et Jesus christ encore. Je sais que Jospeh Smith a était un propret qui a vu Jesus Christ et Dieu dans la priemer vision. A travers Jospeh Smith et Dieu a rétabli son évangile. Je suis très reconnaissante pour le Saint-Cere et les alliance que nous faisons quand nous prenons le Saint Cene. Je sais que le livre de Mormon est au autre témoignage de Jesus Christ et juste comme le Bible, il donne un grand témoignage de la vie de Jesus Christ, et quand j'ai lu le Livre de Mormon j'ai ressenti l'amour de Dieu. Je sais que mes priers reçoivent des reponce si nous avons la foi. J'aime l'église et le propret Thomas S. Monson. Je sais que Dieu est rétabli son évangile et parce que Joseph Smith a reçu la pretise nous avons les clés et l'autorité pour faire des alliances avec dieu Au mon de Jesus Christ. Amen.