HAPPY HAPPY BIRTHDAYS!!! Jordan is SEVENTEEN today. Holy cow. What a champion. Also Jordan, good call on going to Chipotle for the birthday. I've actually been talking about Chipotle a lot this week. I miss it so much! You just go ahead and stick a candle in that burrito. And then eat an extra on for me. And mother, really? Another birthday? How do you do it? One could never tell. You don't look a day older than the day I left.
In response to mom's question: for Christmas... socks and ties? Probably not. I'm drowning in ties and I just bought a bunch of new socks. In all it's reality and ungloriousness, money in the account is definitely the most attractive option. You see, I am quite a fan of all this whole french clothing thing, and well... the big sales are right after Christmas/before I come home. So that is kind of where my heart is lying. Although I would definitely appreciate a little package of cheap American candy and doo dads to open on Christmas morning :)
Answer to dad's question: Luxembourg is RICCHHHH. Holy cow. BUT, really really pretty and I don't think that the people there are very proud about their wealth. The people are apparently a lot nicer than french people. It is a very cool place to go. I highly recommend it. Especially at night. Sounds like the football world is spinning just like it always has. I love your updates.
Josh, way to go snagging those iphone 4's. I've got my mind set on one for when I get home (hint to the parents). Everyone and there dog in France has an iphone 4. And everyyyybody has a dog.
Well, we set a baptismal date this week. We were just passing by a few people's addresses out of the area book, and we stumbled upon a cool guy named Georges. During our rendez-vous I was like, we can totally set a date with him. Then the Spirit confirmed that when he said "I have everything I want, but I don't have what I need. Something is missing in my life." So we explained about baptism and why we set dates as goals with people, and then he chose his own date and he prayed about it himself at the end of the lesson. He is really cool. We will probably end up pushing back the date because he will have to get married in the meantime, but I have a lot of faith in him. He sent us a text the other day to tell us that he had already started reading the Book of Mormon. He even put a smiley face in the text :)We have a member of the bishopric that doesn't live far away that is going to come start teaching with us. Good stuff.
We are also teaching an incredible man named Jean-Michel. He has a house, a mini-van, two little girls, and a wife. He is one of the most soft, kind people I've ever met. He took notes during our lesson this week about how his family can be together forever. He is amazing. We hope to see him with a different member of the bishopric. When I asked him the "will you be baptized if you find out that it's true?" question, he answered with "yes" before I had even finished my sentence.
We didn't get to see Kevin this week, but he seems to be doing well and we hope to see him soon. We had a good lesson with Erasto about the Sabbath day, but then he still didn't come to church :( and we saw a good number of other people around town too. We have been doing a lot of contacting lately and it is paying off with new people to see every week.
Last night Elder Hales and I went to Catholic mass in the Nancy cathedral. It is the second time I've been to a mass on my mission. Very cool. Last time was in Evry so all the Africans were pretty evangelical about it, and this time was almost all elderly french people and it stayed pretty calm. I think it is a really good experience to go to mass. Practically everyone we teach and invite to church is Catholic so it's good to know what they are used to. Elder Hales and I also got some good harmonies going on during their hymns and stuff. It enthralls me how much their is a cut off in religious belief between the old generation and the young generation in France. It is like black and white. Nobody knows what is going to happen to the Catholic church because in 20 years there will not be a whole lot of people filling the cathedrals. Nine out of ten young people that we talk to were baptised Catholic as a baby, no longer believe in God, and don't plan on giving their children any sort of a religious experience. Kind of sad. Hmm.
Guess where I got to go this week??? REIMS!!!! I got to go back for a day because I had to do some stuff to update my visa and that is where all of my legal work is being done. I ADORE that city. Nancy is good but Reims still feels like home. Dang I love that place. I was smiling the entire day long. I even ran into Yiping (our old investigator) on the street! I also got to go see Guillaume, the most awesome recent convert. Oh Reims. So so good. Elder Hales seemed to quite enjoy the tour of my old city too. I am going to have to go back one more time in a month or two, so then I will have seen it in every season :)
This week I will not be in Nancy very much. Tomorrow and Wednesday I am going on an exchange in Versailles with one of the AP's (from Portugal). I am way excited about that. Versailles is gorgeous. Then when Elder Hales and I are reunited we are going down to city of Mulhouse to do a training for their district and then we are both staying there for exchanges until Friday. Crazy. Next week we have two more trips to Paris too.
Happy happy Halloween. The Nancy zone leader companionship is sporting matching orange ties to celebrate the occasion. All four of us in Nancy are going to a big scary cemetery tonight and we might go to the town fair before that :) Want to here one of my new favorite Halloween jokes?? How many vampires does it take to screw in a light bulb? None. Vampires like the dark. ha. ha. haaa. My kind of humor :)
Well, that's about it for this week. Love you loads. Happy Halloween (and birthdays!) It's funny... I remember emailing you two about your bdays one whole year ago :)
Avec tout mon amour,
Elder Ben Coburn