Some days it is hard to believe it is summer. It has been cool in the 70s and rainy this week. Back home in Utah it is in the 90s and 100s! We enjoy the cooler weather since we walk quite a bit.
As we have mentioned before, people are coming to the Paris Temple from all over the world. We have met members from Scotland, England, Switzerland, Madagascar, New Zealand, Canada, South Africa, Germany, USA, Brazil and Australia just this past week.
When Sister Chadwick of Australia came, she was overcome with emotion. She said, “The Spirit is so strong here.” It was such a contrast from the tourist sites she had been to especially the Palais de Versailles. The next day she came to Church at the Versailles Ward. She told me she would never forget her experiences in the temple and the workers there.
Richard and I have also been coordinators at the baptistry again during our shift. We have had youth who will come every day in order to do the baptisms for their ancestors. The matron of the temple, Sister Annie Giraud-Carrier, helped me today and later said she loved being there in the baptistry. One young man who was baptizing did it with such zeal, we had to smile a little. These youth, and also some adults, are excited to get the work done and they come with stacks of family cards.
On Tuesday, Elder Christoffel Golden and his wife, Diane, came to the temple. I was a session leader in the first session and enjoyed being with them. He was the visiting General Authority when Richard was released from the stake presidency and remembered us. They are very kind people. That night he gave a fireside for the Paris Stake in the Versailles Chapel. He said the Lord will intervene when we are hanging by our fingers and will bless us with the desires of our heart. We do not need to verbalize each word in our prayers. The Lord can read these desires. The Goldens are headed to Moscow, Russia, as he functions in the area presidency.
Elder Golden, who is from South Africa, said the Church is exploding in Africa with new converts all over the country. Right now the Church is organized in cities. If they go to the rural villages, the whole village will join the Church! They can hardly handle all of the growth in Africa.
At our senior missionary family home evening, Soeur Cecile Pelous talked to us about her experiences being a world-famous fashion designer with Dior and other Paris fashion houses, selling her home and going to help Mother Teresa in Calcutta. She then, on her own, set up orphanages in Nepal, Morocco, Arnokot and Melamchi. She spoke for two hours barely covering all the experiences she has had. One time, she arrived in Nepal and a major earthquake occurred the next day. She floated down a river rather than ride in an ox cart. The raft turned over, and she clung to a rock fearing for her life. It sounded like she has had more harrowing and exciting experiences than Indiana Jones! Soeur Pelous has adopted 79 of the orphaned children. These children and others are growing up and graduating from college and now have jobs and families of their own. She was unable to have children of her own with her husband and they divorced early on. But Soeur Pelous has many children now who love her and are happy she came to help them. Her story is featured this month in LDS Living magazine. She is a temple worker here in Paris when she is not in Nepal or other areas.
May we all think of ways we can help those around us who need help. It will bring joy to our lives and help us to be more Christlike.