Monday, December 30, 2013

Happy New Year!

Hey Everybody!
I hope everybody had an awesome Christmas. Elder Yan and I had a great week and truly realized how blessed we are to be missionaries. People reached out and showed love for us in so many ways it was crazy.
On Christmas Eve we ended up helping a Sister fix her tempo (temporary shed thing) since some of the poles had collapsed from all the snow. That night we had a dinner appointment with the Morin family and extended family. It was a fun environment with good food and good people. After we ate dinner and the family passed out gifts, we shared a message from Luke chapter 2 about the shepherds' reaction to learning of the birth of the Savior. It's interesting how sharing the message was one of the first things they did. On the 25th we had a couple visits before going to the Lambert family's to skype and have dinner. We also played some card games and after dinner played some hockey in the road. Although being American and not Canadian is an automatic disadvantage for me, I still managed to score some goals.
On Friday we had a really cool opportunity. There's a recent RM in the branch who got home just the week before Christmas, and he's the only member of the church in his family. Before he left on his mission, his parents had met missionaries but never really had any visit with them. On Friday we had dinner at their house! They were an awesome family and really enjoyed talking about our mission experiences since we are doing the same thing their son had been doing for the past two years. His mom even asked us if we have a lot of investigators haha. They were super cool. Hopefully they will start opening up to learning about the gospel soon.
I loved seeing the family and a few of the grandparents through skype. I'm grateful for all the support from everyone and the love that's been shown to me! Love you all, and Happy New Year!

Elder Oxborrow

Monday, December 16, 2013

Happy Holidays from Trois Rivieres!

How's it going? I hope it's nice and cool down there like it is up here. That cold wind of humidity bites hard up here. At least I'm in a car area unlike last Winter (knock on wood since there's a transfer coming up in January). I'm really enjoying the Christmas season this year though. It seems to be easier to forget yourself during Christmas and desire joy for those around us. This week we were able to visit a lot of less-active members and share a message reminding them of the "reason for the season". While we were watching 'Mr Krueger's Christmas' with one family I was reminded of the importance of spreading love to those around us during the holidays, and it's certainly not hard when so many other people are doing it for us.
While we were doing some home teaching with a brother in the branch, a less-active lady pulled out a loaf of homemade bread and a box of cookies for each one of us. Every Christmas I find myself wondering why we don't show the same love throughout the year, and then as I think about it I realize that some people do. Some people never stop loving, giving, and acting with charity; we just have to decide to be one of those people.
Yesterday we had a huge snowstorm so there weren't a ton of people at church. It was hard to see where the lanes were on the road but for the most part people were driving pretty safely. The worst part is that we have a Chevy Malibu (commonly referred to as 'Maliboat' among missionaries) which is pretty terrible for snowy conditions. I miss that little green pickup truck.
Elder Yan and I have been playing a lot of Christmas songs-him on violin, me on ukulele. We're going to try to record some at a member's home. I'll try to send you some if it works out.
The picture was taken and edited by one of our less-actives Frère Paquin.

Love, Elder Oxborrow

Monday, December 9, 2013

Happy Winter

Hey everybody!
It's starting to feel a bit like Christmas... Just got a French Christmas album today so that will help set the mood. Sounds like it's been pretty cold back home. It actually wasn't too bad up here this week. It stayed above freezing a couple days. When January and February come we won't want to step outside though. Our branch Christmas party is going to be the 20th and we're getting a song ready to play with one of the members we visit. I'll try to record it so I can send it home.
This week we had splits with the zone leaders and I stayed in my area with Elder Stillwell who was actually in the MTC with me. I hadn't seen him much since then so it was cool to catch up. We had an appointment with our investigator Jean-Phillipe. At first it was kind of hard to read him and we were having a hard time getting the Spirit into the lesson. We kind of stopped talking and decided to ask him about his life a bit and he started opening up a little bit about his trials and what he was going through. It turned the lesson in a good direction and the Spirit became more present. Marcel Croteau is one of our other main investigators we've been working with. He's actually and excommunicated member who has been working super hard to get back. He's so close! He's already met with the Stake President and is awaiting the date for his disciplinary council. We see him a couple times a week. The only thing he's struggling with a bit at this point is smoking. He's trying so hard but he has a puff here and there. Be sure to pray for him.
So we've already received multiple invitations for dinner around the week of Christmas so we'll be well taken care of!
Love you all! Enjoy the snow!

Elder Oxborrow

Monday, December 2, 2013

December in Trois Rivieres

Hey everybody,
Sorry I didn't have much time to write last week. I guess the first thing I should tell you about is transfers. So of the four of us who were in the apartment, Elder Willardson finished his mission, Elder Francois (my old companion) got transferred to Hawkesbury, leaving Elder Yan and I as companions and working the two areas into one. We've had a lot of appointments and stuff to keep up with but it was a fun week. He loves basketball so we talk about that a lot. He's a stud. The apartment is a little more quiet now but it's nice to have more personal space. The investigators are doing well. I'll write more about them next week. Hope you all had a great Thanksgiving and watched some football for me!

Love, Elder Oxborrow