Monday, September 29, 2014

Photos of New Caledonia...finally--This is my life.

Me & Soeur Gunn

Me and Soeur Pulsipher

This is how we go.. with our companions
Me & the Local Totem

My District

Traditional New Caledonia Meal with Root Vegetables

Me in my Manu outfit handmade just for me

The beautiful clear waters of New Caledonia

Porte a Porte Adventures and More Miracles

Well hello hello hello!!!!

Ok, this is gonna be a wee bit more brief than usual because fiiiiinally I sent pictures! 

Highlights of a spectacular week:

We've been really trying to find new amis this week. I realized something crazy the other day. Out of my whole mission, I've never found someone and then had them stick with it. The ones I've found have puttered out, and all of our other progressing investigators at this point were found about a year or more ago. So. That is definitely a need in our secteur. 

Well we found a whole new apartment complex neighborhood! And we're siked about it because instead of just yelling at their gate "BOOOOONNJOUUUUUURRRRR!!! NOUS SOMMES LES SOEURS MISSIONAIRES.....", we get to legitimately knock on their doors and share a testimony face to face in real person volume levels where the Spirit can actually testify too. Hurrah! 

We've been seeing some huge blessings too! The other day we were sitting at the pizza place waiting for our pizza when a woman walked in and goes "bonsoir les soeur missionaires!" Oh. So I'm racking my brains trying to see how I know this woman, when she continues to introduce herself as an inactive woman who lives in the booooonies of Paita next to the ocean in a neighborhood I've only been to once with Soeur Pulsipher. We never would have found her if she hadn't introduced herself. Just another friendly reminder from Heavenly Father that we're missionaries ALWAYS. You never know when someone is watching or observing or listening. Friendliness works wonders and miracles.

Had some delightful run-ins with people on porte a porte: man still wet from the shower answering his door in a towel, door slammed in our faces (first time on my mission, happy to say that. But usually we're not by people's doors either so that may be a factor), man in just his underwear yikes, and the classic, running through my head on rerun at this point, line, "deeeesoleeee! J'ai vraiiiiment pas le temps, je suis vraiiiiment desolee". Porte a porte is fun :) Always a new face and a new story and a new need behind every door, and we have the one-size fits all solution for all of them!

We were contacting the other day and having no success. Lot's of no's. Well about 40 houses later we were about out of time. We're walking back to our house and are a wee bit drained from talking to everyone and trying to help them see how much they need the Gospel in their lives. But we walk past a house with a family playing outside and a man in the yard. And I feel like we should go talk to them. Families here are extremely difficult to find. But so precious. So we start talking to them and long story short they are married, super faithful and really interested to learn more. MIRACLE. And the HUSBAND is interested which is seriously like almost unheard of here. It was so so happy walking away from their home. 

Alrighty loads more fun stories, but not loads more time. Suffice it to say the Lord's hand is 100% in HIS work. If you're doing His will and His work, He will give you His help, and there's no better help out there. Definitely feeling blessed this week. 

Love you alls! Hope the photos work so you can see a little bit of what my life is like enfin.

Soeur Evans

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Smoke Truck and Miracles Encore

Well boooonjouuuuur tout le monde!!!

Favorite french phrases that slip out whether I'm speaking english or french:
"ca vaaaaa??"
"pas grave" aka no worries, no problemo, don't even worry about it
"bonjour les soeurs/bonjour les filles/bonjour les enfants" Basically
anything "bonjour les..." just warms my soul
" voila quoi" still not sure entirely what it means but our Ward
Mission Leader says it all the time and I just think it's hilarious so
we always throw that into awkward pauses or ends of stories.

baptismal date!!! Background. This is with an amie who has a lot of
things in her life that need changing. She wants to be baptized so
bad, but has always said its a "long path' for her to arrive at the
gateway to eternal life. Well. Me and Soeur Gunn decided once again
that what she needed was a goal. A goal with her and the Savior
working together to attain it. We decided she needed to set a date.

In my head I was all, "ok, even if it's for July or October of next
year, pas grave, it's still a date"! Well we both took a moment,
prayed, pondered, counted to three and said the month. FEBRUARY. No
way. We had both felt really nervous about saying it out loud, and
both of us had looks of total skepticism like "really???is that really
what He's telling us??" But then we BOTH said it! Wowwww!! Then during
the lesson, the Spirit was crazy strong the whole time. At the end,
Soeur Gunn proposed the date and she said yes without the slightest
hesitation. Oh my the joy was so deep. Is so deep. I've been with this
amie since almost the beginning and to get to be there when she
finally fixed the date of when she's going to make this promise with
the Lord is just too good to describe. God is so good.

Another amie came to church!! She came with her older handicapped son.
We sat outside so that he could play with his cards, but all
throughout church she kept tapping her chest and saying "ca fait du
bien d'etre ici, ca fait du bien". She was close to tears. Every
lesson with her, she's glowing the second we walk in. And by the time
we walk out she's literally dancing and bouncing around with joy. When
she feels the Spirit she says her body feels "fresh". I love that. The
gospel makes us feel like new again. She's 72 by the way.

Soeur Gunn loves bread and says so, so everytime we leave a house
we're holding a baguette. Pretty much. People are givers here.

My current district leader is a Tahitian who trained to be a baker for
6 months in France. He already made us chocolate mousse that was to
die for. And next week he's making us bread from scratch. Elite,
french trained, boulagerie bread.

I've been in the same secteur my whole mission so far (my whole
mission in NC that is), but my love for these people just runs deeper
and deeper. And sometimes it's a love that's just there. Maybe it is
still a little awkward when we're not talking about the gospel. But I
still feel this pure joy being with them and just want to radiate the
love I feel for them onto them cause I know it's straight from our
Heavenly Father.

Have the best new porte-a-porte method! Thanks to Soeur Gunn and her
American mission experience. We just offer to say a prayer with
people. Right off the bat. It works! It's really sweet getting to pray
for strangers.

It's getting hotter and hotter here as the summer approaches.
With that the mosquitoes are out in full force and ooooweeee they love
our white skin.

They have this mosquito smoke truck here. It drives up and down the
streets spewing and i mean SPEWING a toxic smoke out the back end out
of this giant torpedo thingy. It's a smoke that kills the mosquitos.
That's how they fight the dengue here. Hahah kill the mosquitos...that
smoke could kill everything hahaha note to all do not breathe it in.

The stars are brighter and brighter. We can see the milky way by our
house. It's divine in every sense of the word.

Off to go preach some more of the good word! Love you my good sweet
lovely people! When the world gets you down, look UP! Christ can
always pick you back up.

Soeur Evans

Monday, September 15, 2014


Bonjour ma grande!!

Hahah words of an ami to be. Aka "hello my tall one!!!" It's the
little things like that that all add up to happiness.

Wowza motherhood is an experience. God is hilarious. I really was
pretty convinced He would send me my complete opposite to train.
Someone who's brain works in a different way than me. But ooooh nope
He basically sent me my baby self to train. Hahah it's unreal. Soeur
Gunn is great and such a hard worker. She's already a superb
missionary. She is going places. (shout out to Soeur Gunn's mom, you
did good!)
It's been a huge blessing for me to hear all of her opinions of things
and to reflect on the ways I've changed in the past 6 months. Because
she keeps reminding me of things I thought initially and things that
are hard and things that are new and goals, etc etc. And it is exactly
the thoughts I had in the beginning. And now I can see so much clearer
just how much the Lord has changed me, or tweaked me. How much I've
changed by applying the Gospel of Jesus Christ. By loving these people
and this culture and this country. By feasting on the words of Christ.
Of course, I've got my specific rough patches that needed and still
need sanding, but I'm so grateful that I've gotten to see a little bit
more the hand of the Lord on my heart.

We set a baptismal date last week!!!!! FIRST ONE!!!!! Oh my goodness I
am so excited for our ami! I know that if he really turns to the Lord
he can totally be ready by then. Miracle of that. We went into that
lesson with a date in mind that we were going to invite him to aim for
if the Spirit so prompted. Well we get to halfway through the lesson
and he tells us the date that he wants to keep the Word of Wisdom by.
And then casually says, "yes, so of course that will be my date de
bapteme aussi"....SAME EXACT DATE. He picked the same date that we
did! MIIIIRACLE!!! God wants him to be ready by then and so do weeeee

I now drive a fancy new automatic Toyota Yaris. Which is not important
except for the fact that I JUST got used to stick shift so now my left
foot and right hand are bored out of their minds when I drive. The
first few days I keep trying to shift and hit the clutch only to hit
air and well that was interesting.

Tontouta blessedly received it's Elders once again. So that is no
longer under our duty list and those people will get much more
attention, as they very much so deserve.

Had a deeeeelightful last week with Soeur Pulsipher. And can't
remember any of it because transfers happened and it feels like a
millenium since last Thursday with all the new changes.

It's turning into summer! Which means sweating like crazy, getting
eaten ALIVE and almost lychee and mango season!!!

Tried our first lychees. Texture of a jellyfish. Aftertaste of garlic.
Overall not my favorite flavor experience but not too shabby and
there's loooots more of those to come :)

Still loving Paita and learning gobs.

All my loving!
Soeur Evans​Soeur Pulsipher with Soeur Evans

District Meeting with Soeur Evans

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

I'm a Mother with Island Hair

Bonjour bonjour bonjour!

I'm a mother! Well thought I'd just get it out there! Not a mother in
the same sense as Alex though. I'm TRAINING!!! All the baby
missionaries get here on Friday and we're so intrigued and excited to
see them all!

It's been 5 months or so since our mission has gotten new sisters.
Again. 5 months. And about 2 months since we got new elders. So our
mission is in dear need of some reinforcements. We have definitely
been feeling the weight of missionaries going home and their
replacements not coming in (visa problems). But sweet rejoicing
they're coming! A whopping NINE of them! That's the biggest group our
mission has ever gotten! When I came in there were 7 of us and THAT
was a big deal, but 9 is unheard of. So yes basically everyone is
training in our mission. Hhahaha not really, but a good half of them.
Small mission details.

All I know about my baby is that her name is Soeur Gunn and she's from
Amurica. Enchante. Can't wait to meet her :))))

It is humbling and exciting to know that I'm training. I pray that I
help her have a wonderful start to her mission. It's wild to think
that was 6 months ago for me...feels like yesterday. Seriously time
whizzes by unbelievably fast. Me and Soeur Pulsipher (she's training
too!) do NOT feel like the old kids on the block, but we kind of are
at this point. Strange.

Paita has been seeing MIRACLES with our inactives. One inactive came
back to church after years and blessed her baby last week. Another one
came back out of nowhere and was enveloped by the ward. And another
one this week told us "I'm just being lazy. The Lord only asks 3 hours
of me all week. That's the least I can do for him. I'm coming to
church on Sunday". Speechless with joy. Inactive work has been such a
foreground part of my mission thus far, and the joy of seeing them
come back to church is TREMENDOUS. I don't know what it feels like to
see an ami baptized, but already, this kind of joy is so fulfilling.

One of our amis didn't come to church on Sunday, who we were really
counting on. We stopped by to make sure everything was ok later on
Sunday afternoon. We got to talk to his wife a little bit and were so
touched by the testimony she shared with us. That ever since she went
to church for the first time (only 4 weeks ago), she has seen life in
a whole new light. She declines invitations to go out and party
because she knows now that that's not what life is about. She reads
the Book of Mormon when she's feeling down. She has all of these new
desires and hopes for her life. She feels like a new person already.
Oh my goodness. Her heart has been so touched by the Spirit. What
sweet, powerful words to hear from a woman I love so deeply. A woman
I've prayed for countless times and fasted for. All we do is invite
the Spirit. He does the rest. And once the Spirit is there, once
people let Him into their hearts, the changes happen naturally.

A huge blessing this week was people expressing their gratitude for us
and for the message we bring. Four or five times this week me and
Soeur Pulsipher were thanked for the light we bring into a home, for
the hope people have found, for the Spirit people feel. For these
people it's us, it's the missionaries. But it's not us at all. It's
the Spirit. It's the light of the GOSPEL. It's the message of the Plan
of Happiness. It's the love of the Savior. What a privilege it is to
bring that into a home. To introduce that into people's lives. Into
their hearts. Into their families. Oh how sweeeet are the tidings we
get to bring.

Got our hair braided by a Futunian ami. Never ceases to be cool. She
braided it tight like nobody's business. Then she rubbed baby oil all
over our hair and our faces. Hahahahaahah uhhh.... yes so we showered
that morning, but walked out of that house looking like we'd been
camping for days. It was like Trek or girls' camp all over again
haaha. Either way, stinking cool and so fun to get your hair braided
by an islander :)

Speaking of hair, we now put coconut oil in our hair like the
islanders so that by the time we get home we'll have hair down to our
ankles. That's the goal at least.

Well that's all for this week! Still in Paita! Still loving it!
(unfortunately that means you probably won't get a picture of me until
November or so because that's the soonest I expect to get

Loove forever and ever,
Soeur Evans

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

God's Pocket of Paradise

Bonjour ma grande famille!!!

I loveth you all.

Blessing of the day! After loads of preparation, fasting and prayer, I
passed the code today! Aka, in english that means step one done for
getting an international driver's license. Now I just have to pass the
driving. Yikes. Still not the smoothest stick shifter. But it was a
huge blessing and I know the Lord helped me so much. (remember, it was
all in french)

Had a great lesson this week. We read through
Mosiah 18:8-10 once with them. Then we read it to them again changing
it to make it apply to them. Instead of "waters of mormon" it was
"chapelle de Tontouta" and instead of "keeping you from being
baptized" it was "keeping you from taking the Sacrament". As we read
and applied the verses to THEM their faces changed completely. You
could legitimately SEE the understanding and clarity wash over them.
It was a really powerful moment. And it was definitely another 'click'
helping them refind their testimonies and desire to come to church. To
understand WHY it's important. I just love helping people to see how
relevant the gospel is to THEM. Sometimes I think we talk about "the
gospel" nonstop and it turns in a giant blanket idea. Which it is. It
covers all. But it is also so specific and personal. Reminding people
THAT is incredible.

Who has a testimony of home teaching and visiting teaching?? THIS
missionary. It. Is. Beyond. Important. Please oh please do your
visits. The Lord needs us to do our visits. That is the most important
calling we have. I really feel that way. The work can't hasten if the
flock is scattered. And if the flock is scattered and the shepherds
aren't gathering...well, ca fait rien. Yes the work is hastening. But
it can hasten a whole lot more when people help it. On Sunday we
introduced an inactive to her visiting teacher. And by the end of the
lesson, she asked "what time does la chapelle start again?" I told her
and then asked her if she would like to come to church this week. She
paused, looked around a little and then looked up, "if all works out,
yes. We'll see, but maybe". Yes, I understand that that's not the most
committed response. But that is a HUGE step. And I know it has so much
to do with the wonderful soeur who was with us.

One of our amies dressed us up in Walisian wedding garlands today.
Like those ribbon/confetti/pearl giant necklace laies. And then told
us to take pictures and tell our parents we're married. Hahahaha donc
voila mes parent, je me suis marie! Not really, but the pictures sweet

Almsot forgot! Last week we went to the abandoned ship again! And sat
on the beach just staring out at the gorgeous water and island we live
on. It was only us and 2 couples on the beach (hahaha), so it was
peeeeaceful and quiet. We're really on such a little corner of the
world. Safely tucked away. God's little pocket of paradise that He
keeps a special eye on.

People grow everything here. Literally you can live off the land. And
the sea. I never realized how true that was. But God gave us
everything we need. Blessings!

It's almost mango and lychee season and we haven't stopped hearing
about it. CANNOT WAIT. Been siked for this since I grasped that fact
that I was going to an island on my mission. (side note for Hay, mango
season is in december....coincidence? I think not!)

loveth you all!

Soeur Evans

ps taught primary and ooooweeeee these children are cute. Also i know
none of the primary songs in french. what a shame. But the kids take
the lead so all is well