November 27, 2017


Le Chesnay, France


Food, friends and experiences

Dear Family and Friends,

We have had a busy few weeks the first part of November. Karen, along with other sisters, helped put up the decorations for the celebration of the 175th year of Relief Society for the Church. At the celebration, there was an hour reenactment of the first Relief Society in Nauvoo, Illinois, with great costumes. The American, African and Tahitian sisters were also represented by song and dance. It was all very nicely done.

We had a visit by Michael and Maria Moody, friends and members of our home ward to see the new Paris Temple. They also accompanied us to the Relief Society program, church at the Versailles Ward, a visit to Marie Antoinette’s Chateau, and our senior missionary family home evening.

While we were going through the Marie Antoinette Chateau, we just happened to see Rob Brough, the boss of our daughter, Julie, and his wife and another associate, Dave Thomas, and his wife. It was quite a random coincidence.

For family home evening, we had a farewell night for Zella and Rick McGurk who had been recruited to serve a six-month mission at the Paris Temple. We will miss them and their good cooking as well as Rick’s hilarious stories — the best one being when he got locked out where the garbage is picked up and had to climb a metal fence to get out. This 76-year old was teetering on the spiked top when an elderly woman passed by. He smiled as he was perched on top and said, “Bonjour, Madame!” I am sure she wondered what was going on in this Mormon enclave!

On Monday, Nov. 6, Brother and Sister Zobiri fixed a very delicious couscous luncheon for the senior missionaries and temple presidency. It was also a farewell to the McGurks. It took many hours to fix the couscous, vegetables, broths and meats that went into the dish. The Zobiris are wonderful people.

The temple has still been very busy. Our sessions are full, and we have had many spiritual experiences. One was in the baptistry where a man who had been baptized a member of the Church came with the missionaries who taught him and baptized him to do work now for his ancestors. He seemed very solemn waiting to be baptized, and we were praying he would have a good experience. When he went into the water, he started to smile and seemed overjoyed as he hugged everyone afterwards.

There was also a woman who had been baptized a month earlier and received her endowment on a Wednesday. On Thursday, she was there to be baptized for her mother and two grandmothers. After each baptism, she sobbed. It was contagious, and we were all in tears. Then a young man was baptized for her father, grandfather and deceased brother. We always feel that these people are present from the spirit world for this important ordinance, and it was very evident that day.

On Nov. 12, everyone was invited to bring an investigator to church. It was a very inspiring day with great talks and lessons. Sister Giraud-Carrier gave a wonderful talk as did others. They really explained the gospel clearly.

A special experience Richard and I had was to help a young woman in the temple who was deaf and could not speak. She had a special spirit about her.

We are behind in our messages and will send more sooner. We love and appreciate each of you and hope that you will find healing and peace in the temple. We enjoy our time at this new temple and wish we could share more of the sacred things. As the holidays approach, we are trying to light the world for others in the temple as we serve.
Elder and Sister Bradford


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