Dear Friends and Family,
We have had an interesting week at the temple. Almost 95 percent of the people bring family names to the temple. Today the Cheve family was baptized for 30 ancestors. The father baptized the mother, son and daughter. It was a tender moment for them.
When the temple was first talked about in 1998 by Pres. Gordon B. Hinckley here in France, the people began researching their family names. They have been waiting to do these French names in the Paris France temple.
An American couple has done the research and processing on Family Search for the early French members who joined the Church when missionaries were first sent to France in the 1850's and so forth. They felt it was only appropriate to have their temple work done in the first days of the Paris Temple. There have been many spiritual experiences connected with this.
Many of the new temple workers who are coming to help the temple missionaries come from big distances and stay in Patron housing for a few days and are trained to be "servants" or temple workers. We enjoy hearing of their conversion to the gospel.
One sister was born in Lebanon and had a dream one night that she should leave her country and travel to Paris to live. She said the Lord said it was necessary for her to do so. Her father was a famous Lebanese artist living in Paris. This woman met a man and began living with him, smoking, drinking and doing drugs. She then had a friend in Paris who met the missionaries and was going to join the Church. The friend was hesitant to tell her about the Church because she would have to give all of this up. One day she had the courage to tell her and to her surprise she accepted the Book of Mormon, knew the Church was true and gave up the bad choices she had made.
Eventually she married in the nearest temple which was Frankfurt and served for 11 years in that temple. She is delighted now to be in the Paris Temple and is a big asset.
Another story is when a young woman was going to be baptized and she rode to the church with a young man who lived in her apartment building to see the Bishop. He was also preparing for baptism. The Bishop interviewed each of them. He told them they would need to be married before they could be baptized. He assumed they were living together. The couple thought this was unusual but they believed in the gospel and so they married each other. A few years later the woman was visiting with the Bishop and asked if everyone had to get married to be baptized!
Saturday evening Richard and I went for a walk and ended up at the Palace de Versailles. There were throngs of people there going to a program. Many were dressed in authentic 1700's costumes. We wished we had a ticket to go to whatever it was. Later there was a huge fireworks show there.
On Monday, our P-day Richard and I went by bus and train to see Sacre Coeur, a very large Catholic Church on a hill. We enjoyed a sandwich at the base of it in a small brasserie or cafe. We then went by metro to Notre Dame. There were hundreds of people there in line to see it but it went quickly and we entered 20 minutes later. We had a nice day in Paris, but were glad to return home with our tired feet.
We are thankful for a Church who worships the living Christ. We are also grateful for this marvelous opportunity to be in His Holy House.