Hello-Bonjour!How's everybody doing? Good, I hope.
#65 16 November 2015
Well, this week has been pretty good. In preparation for our new companion, we had to do a TON of cleaning this last p-day. We filled up our garbage can with junk and rearranged our apartment some to make it more suitable for 3. Elder Sorensen still has to study on the couch with a little table, but it's better than nothing.After picking Elder Soresen up from the Mission office we went to the temple open house with Chad and Mike, 2 recent converts who are planning on going to the temple for the 1st time when it reopens. It was SO great and I even saw a bunch of people from my previous areas! Even from Saint Jean! It's been over a year since I've seen some of these people! And the temple is wonderful! It was renovated due to some mold and foundation troubles, so they basically redid the whole thing. It used to be one the basic small temples they have all over, but now it has some Montreal flavor to it, implicating the 4 different flowers of Montreal's founders all over. The English Rose, the French Fleur-de-Lis, the Scottish Thistle, and the Irish Shamrock. It was beautiful! Shout out to Sister Ashcroft from my homeward who helped with the mural. It's amazing the artwork and decor that it is put into the temple. Thanks to everyone who helped make this such a wonderful place. Only the best for the Lord!
#64 9 November 2015
Sorry, super short letter this week. I'll do better next week.Probably the most exciting news this week is that we got our transfer calls. We had expected us both to stay here in Hawkesbury, which is exactly what happened. What we didn't expect was that we will now be in a trio! The missionary that will be with us is an Elder Sorenson (not sure how it's spelled). So we've been cleaning and preparing for him almost all p-day. So now we'll have a small army of Elders at all times. It should be fun in our small apartment. The next most exciting thing is that we've been having to feed our investigator's cats every day this week because she was sick with double pneumonia. She has 5. It's been an adventure. But we've had fun. The third most exciting and the most frightening experience of the week happened yesterday night. We had stopped by the chapel to do some business stuffs on the the computers. We entered the chapel and I was opening the door to the clerk's office. Just as I got the door unlocked a super loud, bone cracking, ear-drum popping, booger blowing, tear inducing, socks knock-offing, heart stopping BRRAAAP! went off. Imagine your annoying alarm clock hooked up to the speaker system at a college football stadium that goes off to scare away rhinos. I might be exaggerating, but that's what it felt like to me. I thought that we had not turned off the alarm properly and that we were going to be shot down by a tactical missile. Turns out that it was just my companion seeing if this certain button had the same sound as our doorbell. Let's just say it took me a good 5 minutes for me to breathe again and another 20 minutes of adorable Mormon commercials (Homefront videos on lds.org. They're wonderful) to get my heart out of my stomach and my brain right-side-up. Good job companion. You've done it again.
#63 2 November 2015
This week has been pretty. . . Uneventful. Johanne was in Utah and she came back on Monday. She seemed to enjoy it but she's still not sure on baptism. We're working on that. Tuesday we did some service at the food bank which is always fun. Stacking shelves and helping people.Probably the most exciting thing this week was when Elder Pryor scared the beejeebeez out of me. One night I walk out of the bathroom and Elder Pryor asks me to change the alarm on the phone. So, I walk over and open up our phone and I notice a message that says it's from Pres. Patrick. Every time I get a call or text from the APs or President my heart starts beating in my ears. So I look at the phone and it says, "Elder Perkes, we'll speak further of this but just so you are prepared you are being transferred next Wednesday to Ottawa." In my head I was like, WHAT THE JUNK?!? So I run over to Elder Pryor almost yelling at him, "Did you see this? Did you see this?" I send back an "Ok" without really knowing what else to say. But then the 'ok' came straight back to my phone and I know my face turned bright red. Elder Pryor had sent the message to our own phone then saved our own number as "Pres. Patrick". I then proceeded to punch his arm and kick his shins several times. I was just so hyped up in the moment that I didn't sit down and think logically like: Why would President send this over text? Wouldn't it be the APs call me? I've only been here for 5 weeks! Why would he send this on a Wednesday? And other things similar. So, he got me good.
#62 26 October 2015
This week was pretty great. It started off with a speedy P-day because we had to rush down to the Mission Office in Montréal to get to a leadership meeting with Elder Golden. Unfortunately I was not allowed to go in (which upset me, but it's ok). So I went on a splits-blits-thingy with Elder Roubicek, Elder Carr, and Elder Critchlow, 3 missionaries who have been out for about 4 months (Elder Roubicek is my 'brother' as he is also being trained by Elder Hunter). Basically what we did for an hour was we walked up a street, walked back down, and talked to everyone on the way. It was cool to see all that greenie fire. We placed 4-5 Book of Mormons, I believe.After the meeting we met back up with our companions and then E. Pryor and I went with 4 other elders and got La Banquise. Good stuff. We slept over at the Zone Leaders apartment in Kirkland and then woke up bright and early the next morning so we could get to the Papineau chapel by . At we sat in our seats waiting for Elder Golden and then we all got up and we formed a line into the gym where we were all able to shake his hand and introduce ourselves. He asked us how long we've been out and where we were from. I told him that I was from Logan (no one knows where Hyde Park is) and he said, "I know that there are a lot of Perkes up there." but the line moved too fast and I hesitated and so I wasn't able to ask how he knew that. . . But it was still cool!
Hopefully that wasn't too long for you, but it was an excellent lesson on prayer, perseverance, and faith that all will be well. It was a needle in a haystack miracle, you could say. I'm thankful for a companion who hung in there.
Thank you for your prayers and I hope you all have a wonderful week!
p.s. Alma 34:27 Pray and ponder always for you and those around you
#61 19 October 2015
The answer: 15 cords (read on to find our more!)
Proverbs 22:1 "A good name is rather to be chosen than great riches , and loving favour rather than silver and gold."
#60 13 October 2015
Dear Everybody,This week has been pretty good, but we didn't do too, too much. We were able to go do some service at a farm. We picked up about 12 laundry baskets full of apples, and it was only from 8 trees. They have 250 trees in total. . . Pretty crazy. But it was pretty fun and we got a whole bunch of fresh apples and some fresh apple juice. Pretty great stuff, if I do say.
#59 5 October 2015
So, this week was pretty exciting. It started with a nice lunch at La Banquise (poutine) where Elder Shumway bought a regular poutine, ate a third of it, put the rest in a box, went up to pay for his meal, then left the box on the counter. Basically he left 8 dollars on the counter there. Pretty funny when he found out on the metros. The rest of the week was mostly preparation and packing for transfers, which went smoothly besides the fact that I got sick. We were able to visit a few families before I left and take a few pictures. I'll be missing Hochelaga, but I'm excited to be in Hawkesbury with Elder Pryor. Elder Pryor is from Orem, Utah and it going home in December. I met him when I was in Ottawa and now we're companions and we get along pretty well. It's been pretty fun so far. Hawkesbury is full of bi-lingual people and is very small compared to Montreal. The actual physical area is huge, but it's all small towns. My first night I was not feeling super awesome, but we still helped this one family move in. It was pretty fun, but the house was not in the best condition (the previous owner didn't clean it up very well) so that fired up the husband a bit. They had been through a lot the whole day because they weren't able to get people to help them pack up the trailer and then they come to a home that's not clean. But we were able to unload just about everything beforeand I was very happy to get a nice rest. Mostly I've been meeting our investigators, less active and active members. Conference was SO great! I learned so much. One thing I got from 3 different talks that we could apply to almost anything is Simplify, Magnify, and Clarify. A new goal I have is to Ponderize a new verse each week. This week my verse is 1 Nephi 6:4-6, and it's Nephi explaining how he wants to write the things that are most pleasing unto God, and not to man. I hope that we can all take and apply the new things we learned in conference, because I know that if we do that, we will find more peace and happiness in this world that seems to be unraveling more and more. Have a great week!Elder Perkes
#58 28 September 2015
Important points because I don't have a ton of time, sorry.
Hugo has a date! We had a great lesson and then later that day he and Guylaine, our newest investigator, came to the baptism for 3 kids in the Montreal Est Branch. They both loved it! We had over 80 people at the baptism, which was great.
Probably the next exciting/sad thing is that after 6 months of being in the big city of Montreal in the lovely ward of Hochelaga, I shall be transferred to a little English branch 45 minutes away called Hawkesbury. I'm sad, happy, excited, and scared. I'm excited to be in a new area, happy that I know my new companion a little already and he seems pretty cool, sad to leave all the wonderful people I've met and worked with (note: must come to visit), and worried I shall lose my french. But it's ok! That's what studies are for, right?
Funny story of the week:
Last Sunday at our pot-luck Elder Shumway bit his lip. 3 days later, it started bothering him a lot and we looked it and it had gross white spot on it. We had some mission people look at it and then Elder Shumway decided to go to the doctor. It took about 1 hour to get to the doctors office where we waited 10 minutes because we were early and then another 30 because the appointments were backed up. Finally the doctor invited us in, looked at Elder Shumway's mouth and walked out. 5 minutes later he walks back in and says that it's going to heal on it's own and that he just needs to avoid touching it and eating on that side and that he can gargle salt water if he wants. . . Then an out back to our next appointment. [face palm] Quite an adventure.
So, change is coming! I hope everyone has a FANTASTIC general conference! How lucky we are to have a prophet today!
#57 21 September 2015
This week was pretty good, but I don't have a ton of time so here it is in a nutshell:
I had splits with Elder Hernandez where we ate $5 Thai food, gave a haircut to one of our good friends in the ward, Daniel Bolduc, I attended some District Leader duties and did 2 baptismal interviews with 2 kids going to get baptized this Saturday, and then visited the Cosmes, a Spanish Family in our ward. They made us Agua de Horchata which is the delicious drink of rice, milk, and sugar. SO GOOD.
The rest of the week was filled with normal stuff. We got a new investigator from the English Elders, Guylaine and she seems pretty solid, searching for truth and stuff. We had few Dinners with members which is always nice and we did LOTS of planning.
Sunday was fun because our 2nd and 3rd hours we did a genealogy activity, which most of our investigators liked, in preparation for the reopening of the Montreal Temple. Then we had a nice big pot-luck after with so much good food and stuff.
And we finally got a baptismal date for Margalie! [cheers] So, she should be baptized in the mid-October. (we have to do some scheduling magic with the stake to have it). But it should be good!
Have a fantabulous week!
#56 15 September 2015
This week wasn't the most exciting week. We were able to go to the Biodome, which was basically a mini-zoo. My favorite was the poison dart frogs and the puffins, which I have decided is my new animaux preferé (favorite animal en français). We had a few suppers at members houses and I had this Mexican drink made from flower pedals called Jamaica (pronounced like huh-my-kuh) and few good lessons. Hugo and Margalie are doing good, but we're still working on the coffee thing. But they both committed to stop. We also had pass-off with the English Elders, Elder Hunter (my trainer) and Elder Roubicek (his new trainee). His name is Hughes and he seems like a pretty cool Haitian. Sunday was a little crazy. I was able to play a duet with Elder Shumway in Sacrament meeting with me playing the piano (that's for you mom) and he was playing the organ. We played the song found in this months Ensign called "My Shepherd Will Supply My Need". Everyone loved it and said it was perfect (there a few timing errors, but no one really noticed). Then we had another pass-off with the English Elders in a sketchy part of the our area, but the guy seemed nice. His name was Hugo (yes, we now have 2 Hugos we're teaching) and he's just young guy but his environment isn't the most...inviting. We were interrupted by a lady who jumped in, told us her life story and why she believes what she believes. It wasn't necessarily bad, it was just. . . odd. But we got a return appointment. After that the Chinese Elders, Elder Chou and Elder Woo, called to ask if we could open the church for them and come help them with a lesson. So we sat in on the lesson, which they kept mostly in English. It was a long Sunday and we weren't able to eat until quite late. But it was good and I got a good night's rest for our Zone Conference the next day. It was such a good Zone Conference. A big chunk we talked about the Sabbath Day and how if we keep the Sabbath Day more sacred, if we really dedicate it to a day of rest from the world, all other aspects of our life will be better. We also learned about Sacrifice and how we need to cut of the bad branches and purge the good ones so that we can become better (John 15:1-2).
So, pretty good week.
#55 8 September 2015
This week was pretty fun/crazy/normal/yummy. We had a little district activity where we all went up to Mount Royal to see the view point of the whole city. Yes, it's more of a hill than a mount, but it was cool anyways. While up there, we saw this kid and his aunt playing together. The kid was playing the accordion and the lady was playing the public piano. They were really cool and we were talking with them after and the lady said that she had actually met President Hinckley! She had been in a group that had performed with the Mormon Tabernacle Choir and they had lunch with a bunch of general authorities.
Wednesday we had a pretty good district meeting and after we did a split with the other Elders. Elder Smith came with me to our area and it was ok. Nothing super exciting, but after a long night of bus rides we stopped at this tiny Thai restaurant and it was FANTASTIC. I got a plate of special noodles, shrimp, and chicken. Then we had fried ice cream. It was SOOOO good. The next day we had ANOTHER split with the Zone Leaders, but this time I went to their area with Elder Gutierrez and Elder Shumway stayed in ours with Elder Munoz. Unfortunately, all of our appointments fell through and we spent a lot of time in the car making calls and figuring out what we were going to do. We were supposed to have one solid lesson in the evening, but that cancelled as soon as we showed up. So we talked with the member who came with us (well, he did. They talked in Spanish) and while I awkwardly stood there picking out a word here and there, two younger men walked by. As they passed us, the one walking closest to us lifted up his hand and said, "High-five!" I reacted with such great reflexes and returned the high-five. They just continued walking. Random moment, I would say.
Saturday we went to our first lesson and I COMPLETELY forgot to wear a tie. I almost felt naked without it. But it was ok. The lesson went well. We have 2 solid investigators Hugo and Margalie. Both come to church consistently and Margalie really wants to be baptized. Hugo is still a little hesitant. He doesn't feel like he's ready for the moment, but I think he'll be fine.
For fast and testimony meeting I bore my testimony about Charity. I shared something I had learned in District Meeting from Elder Plumb. Charity is the pure love of Christ, which doesn't necessarily mean that charity is your love for someone. Really, Charity is the Atonement. And how we have Charity is by sharing the blessings of the Atonement with everyone. That is true charity. So, that was a cool thing I learned.
Then yesterday, for Labor Day, all of our appointments cancelled. It was long day of walking and trying to find lost ward members and investigators. My feet were very tired at the end and I was happy to get some sleep.
Thanks everyone for your love and support and have a great week!