Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Hey there, well it looks like it's been 11 months and I can't believe it!

Wow! 11 months!!

Dear Family,

And once again, the sun is shining, the trees are blooming, allergies are kicking in and it's summer time in France! Again! Wait, a second? That must mean that all the other seasons rolled around and I totally didn't even notice. Not to mention Christmas and Easter. Wow. That's not ok. I've still got so much more I need to do and I need to find the time to do it!

I'm sure you've felt like that at one point or time in your life with regards to so many others things. But that is the gospel truth out here --that the weeks speed by faster than we can keep up with.

The other day at church, we were teaching a lesson to a young couple that is investigating the church. We were teaching with one of the member about the Restoration of the Gospel and I asked him to share his testimony. Pretty soon, he was talking about prophets seeing Christ in temples and all other kinds of things that would and did cause our investigators to make some of the most interesting faces. But after he shared his heartfelt testimony, I did my best to just chime in and say," Thank you Frere. I really liked that you...and I really think that the most essential thing to remember is that God is the same yesterday, today and forever. He loves His children.."  I love those colorful  and incredible moments while teaching people! I'm also grateful that the spirit is the teacher and that we usually only retain about 40% of what people say to us.

Saturday night Soeur Stevine was driving us home and she told us about a song that she wanted to publish for the church in Congo. Turns out that she was quite a famous singer when she was living there and was able to do a lot of good for the church and the humanitarian efforts there. I asked her to share her song with us and so she started singing. It was the most piercingly beautiful African melody. She sang in Lingila, her native tongue, and then translated it for us. She talked about how she met the missionaries,how they showed her the Book of Mormon and how she read it to find out if it was true. She got her answer that it was and she invites others to do so too. It doesn't take very much to recognize a song that's almost a hymn. It comes across with a power and surety. I just turned to her and told her, "Soeur--you have to share this!" Heavenly Father blesses us when we use our talents to glorify Him. That's all I ever want to do now because I finally am understanding just how great the blessings of the gospel are. This is eternal life we're talking about.

We ended up being able to go to the Louvre this past week and a family from Draper, Utah came up and talked to us.They were so fun to visit with and they told us about how He had served his mission in the Ivory Coast and their girls were taking a french immersion class and they were so excited to be there for a week or two. And that was probably the highlight of the Louvre! We did try and take a quick look at some mummies and I could resist but take a video dancing in the french statue exhibit (I mean, who else gets to say that they did that anyways?)

And mom, I finally got the Christmas package you sent me four months ago. Haha. It was all dusty and half opened when it showed up in the mail. I have NO clue where it had been for that long! haha. Probably looked suspiciously large and so they tossed it somewhere for a "little bit." Thanks for the letters and gum!
I hope to be staying here for at least another transfer, but I'll be finding out at the end of this week. And Mother's Day skyping is coming up. So mark your calendars family!

Much love and sincerity wrapped into an email and sent your way,

Soeur Bronte Hopkins

"Did I ever mention that we live right next to the sacred grove? That's the park right next to us. And I somehow could not figure out how to keep my tag on straight."

"Catherine and me"

Lots of love,


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