Tuesday, March 26, 2013

On the Rise...

Salut mes amis et ma famille,
It has once again started to get a little bit warmer and I think we might be really on the upswing for good now... I hope. I'm excited to go outside without a coat on, And I can only imagine how beautiful Quebec will be in the Summer. It's been a long Winter haha.
This week was good because we were able to sift through the investigators we had been finding and really figure out which ones are going to progress. One of them is Pierre-Luc who is in his 20s, is into boxing, and is super cool. We gave him a book of Mormon 2 weeks ago and stopped by again this past week with a member who is preparing for his mission. We had a good lesson teaching the Restoration, and when we asked him what he thought about it he said if it wasn't something that interested him, we wouldn't be there, so that was pretty cool. At the end of the lesson we committed him to baptism and he accepted it. We're super excited to work with him.
Our second success this week was Jean. He's from Rwanda and was referred to us by a member in Montreal. He grew up Catholic and has a strong belief system so that's super cool. A large majority of people in Quebec were baptized Catholic but don't necessarily have much of a belief system, or even care much about religion, so it's always good to find people who realize the importance of beliefs. We taught him about the Book of Mormon (he already had a copy from his friend) and the Restoration. He was really open to the message and shows a lot of potential.
Yesterday was a bit of an interesting day haha. We kept finding random items throughout the day... The first thing was while we were waiting at the bus stop I found a box of matches on the bench, and there were three left so I figured, hey, they might come in handy in the future, so I put them in my bag. Later on during the day, we got on the bus and sat down and Elder Leon sat right on a box of cigarettes that had been dropped by someone... We opened it up and there were no more or less than 3 cigarettes in the box! It was like Satan was trying to tempt us or something haha. It was pretty funny. So we threw them away, and went and did some door to door for a while until we were ready to head home for the night. We started walking up the street toward the bus stop and Elder Leon bent over to pick something up. I just kept walking and didn't think anything of it. A few seconds later he caught up to me and said "Elder, you'll never believe what I just found." Then he pulled out an iPhone from his pocket! It was pretty crazy. We decided we'd hold onto it so no one else could find it and steal it (I was a little worried they'd think we were trying to steal it). We stayed in the area where we found it and we figured when the owner realized they had lost it they'd call it from a friend's phone and try to track it down. A few minutes later it started ringing so we answered it and told them we had found it and wanted to return it. We met at a grocery store nearby and returned it to her. She was pretty relieved, and she asked us is she owed us anything. We thought about committing her to baptism haha but we didn't. So it was a pretty interesting day.
I hope everything's going well back home. Everything's in ship shape up here in Quebec. Love you all!
Elder Oxborrow

Cold Again...

After a good stretch of lukewarm temperatures, it has dipped back down again. Last night it reached about -17. I'm excited for summer ha. It's not as bad now though because we've reached the point where the sun actually helps warm us up. We'll be out in short sleeves before too long though. It's just a matter of time.
This week we continued to find new investigators, but also continued to have a hard time meeting with the investigators we already had. We had a lot of good visits with less actives as well. Also this week, Elder Leon starting teaching me some Spanish. There are a lot of Spanish speakers in the area so it would be sweet to be able to learn it as well as French. The pronunciation is a lot easier than French, and a lot of the structure is the same so it shouldn't be too difficult, but I'll have to practice it a lot.
This week in Quebec there was a huge event called Red Bull Crashed Ice, which is basically a race on ice skates down a track with jumps and sharp turns and such. We were lucky enough to go see it! We were only able to stay for a few minutes but it was still awesome to be there. Also, on Saturday we had transfer calls and we found out Elder Leon and I are both staying here. I was super excited and relieved. Ever since I got here I've wanted to see this place in warmer temperatures. There's a lot to do and see in Quebec in the summer, like there is in the Winter.
Also, this week we got mail from the mission office and I just wanted to thank everyone for the happy birthday wishes!
Love, Elder Oxborrow
P.S. The pictures are from the past few weeks.
-A scorpion at our investigator's house
-My birthday cake
-Red Bull Crashed Ice

Monday, March 11, 2013

Birthday Week

Dear family and friends,
Just another week in paradise here in Quebec City. The work in the area is really starting to expand. It seems like it had been at a bit of a standstill for a while but little by little we're finding ways to hasten the work. It's been a bit of a challenge lately though since all of the students are studying for finals then leaving for Spring Break. We did have good lessons with our investigators Bin Li and Carlos.
The other day Donald, our investigator who had been in the hospital for a month was discharged. We happened to stop by the hospital a couple hours after he had left. I was immediately worried because I thought he'd probably start smoking again the second he got home. We went by his house and our fears were realized. I was super bummed since he had gone a month straight in the hospital smoke free, and had gained a lot of his strength back. He says the last few cigarettes he has are the last ones he'll smoke before he quits but we'll see. I wish there was more we could do to help him but it has to be his desire.
On Friday the 2nd counselor in the branch presidency took us out for dinner and Elder Leon mentioned that it was my birthday. He immediately started asking me what I needed for my birthday and I kept telling him I was fine and had everything I needed. He said he'd buy me a cake haha. So we walked to this fancy cafe/bakery place and he bought me a cake, then when we were walking back to the bus stop we passed a sport merchandise type store and he asked me if I wanted a jersey. I said I was good and he said we should just go look. He kept offering stuff and I kept trying to resist but he persisted and in the end he won by buying me a way nice Montréal Expos hoodie. Ah man I felt so bad but he said he's young, single, doesn't have a car, and has a well paying job so he's well off financially. In any case, it was a good birthday present. We also went out to get ice cream earlier that morning with the other missionaries. It was a good day. Thanks to all for the happy birthday wishes!
Love, Elder Oxborrow