Sorry for the lateness of the hour, we had a power outage. Just to let you know that I'm still alive and well.
Due to stake conference this week, Président extended the current transfer by one week to avoid the chaos of moving missionaries across countries while also organizing an entire country for the coming of Elder Vern P. Stanfill. So, that means that Elder Phillips is still in Akpakpa for at least another week, baby! Yeah!
Frère Victor had to get his driver's license, so he got released. He really was a good companion, I love him a lot. During my time with him, I realized that, while I have become a really good missionary (doing the missionary things), I had left being a good person by the wayside. Looking back, I should have focused more on giving him a good experience than on my personal desires of the sector. Victor's going to be a great missionary, I've got high hopes and expectations for him.
I'm currently working with Elder Ogoudiran again! He's free for missionary work pretty much all the time. I will say, being with a companion the second time in a row is awesome! You already know each other, and what frustrates one another, so you avoid the tipping points, and you just have a blast together. Honestly, it feels great to laugh. Elder Ogoudiran's a great guy.
Concerning stake conference, me and Elder Hansen are teaming up to split up the mountain of hymns to master for two days of prelude and conference. I will take all of Saturday, me and Elder Hansen will split up the prelude Sunday morning, and Elder Hansen will take the actual conference. It was an answer to my prayers! There is much less stress, and because of the diminished stress, I did so much better in our practice with the choir! Keep the prayers going! Y'all have been praying for me, I definitely felt it this week. I'm so grateful, and I hope you can feel my love and prayers from this end too.
We had an awesome zone activity this morning. We went to Stade de l'Amitié to do some sports, then we went to a zoo in Gbegamey. It's not nearly as good of quality as the zoos in the US, but the animals are much cooler, and you get much more close to them, and you get to touch some of them. Afterwards, we went to a restaurant, and I had a dish called igname pilée, with a side of sauce and goat cheese. Sooooo good! (:
The sector is doing good, same ol' same ol', but I'm not letting it get me down. I'm trying to return to that wonderful doctrine of "happiness is a choice". This week I'm going to focus on being happy with whatever comes my way, counting blessings, etc.
Yvette got baptized on Saturday. Unfortunately, Elder Alexander had a surprise doctor's appointment, and Elder Kola was going to baptize, so we went on a split to the bureau. Président Morin gave us a ride in his truck to the doctor, and the conversation turned towards Yvette's baptism. Président was pretty happy to hear that she got baptized, and he said "Now the family is complete. When the family is complete, it's much more powerful". That's something that I've always known (it's emphasized in Preach My Gospel), but I never really felt until then. The Spirit really touched me. I now realize that I am not just here to find, teach, baptize, confirm, and retain recent converts, and reactivate less-actives; in all, I'm here to help build eternal families.
I believe and know that God has given to us again the power and authority necessary to ensure that families can be together for eternity by living and obeying the laws and ordinances of the Gospel. I know it!
Have a great week!
Avec tout mon amour,