Monday, December 10, 2012

December 10.2012

Hey Guys!!

So, Goodness, transfer week when you get transferred is just crazy! We hardly got anything done! But that also might be because we spend so much time in transit walking or on the bus because we don't have a car... =( 

Life is super good though. I live in Ste-Foy with Elder Wright. He is from Alaska and has been out for one transfer. I shall include my address at the bottom because I just know that so many of you are dying to send me letters and packages and presents and such. =) 

Uh, not a whole lot to say this week, other than the weather here just turned super sour. lots of snow, lots of wind, lots of ice, lots of cold. Grocery Shopping was going to be brutal walking to the store and then walking home with the bags, but we were able to sneak a ride with the Zone Leaders, so we didn't have to carry anything. =D So happy... 

We have a baptism on wednesday, so that will be awesome! His name is Rémy and he is 18 and just awesome. Super glad to have gotten the chance to meet him! Other than that really the only big thing is just how small I feel here in Quebec. There are so many people!! And in Alma it was so small! Haha, but that's OK, I mean, I am kind of short so.... =)

Anyways, I love you all, and I hope you have a great week!

Elder Austen Oviatt

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

December 3, 2012

Well Hello there. Hi. Hey. How's it goin'? Hi...

Well, Big news coming your way!

Transfer calls! Saturday night we got a call from.... President Cannon!!!! That means a leadership change! Assistant to president/Zone Leader/District leader/Trainer. So we were both a little... Uhhhhh... What on earth is going on!!

I am leaving Alma :'( Elder Beaumont in staying here and he is training a new missionary!!!! I'm so happy for him!!! =) =) =) He is a little freaked out though. I am super excited for him, he is going to rock it up here in Alma  So much is going on, We have a baptism here at the end of December, and with Brad, things are just going super well!

But that being said, I'm headed off to Quebec City, to Saint Foy. I will be "training" a new missionary. He has been here one transfer, but technically until you have been in the mission two transfers, you are still in training. So I'm companioned with Elder Ryan Wright. =) And with that, I am also the District leader. In my district is the Zone leaders, and the sisters who are in Quebec zone. I'm exicted, but I have to go. I still don't have an address, so if things must be sent, they need to come to the mission home. otherwise, I will have the address for you guys next week.

I love you all, and Hopefully I don't die in a car accident this week because it has been raining the past 2 days and the roads are completely iced over. It's brutal out here!!

Elder Austen Oviatt
Here is one of the family's we are friends with up here in Alma.   Paul and Renée. And their kids Marie-Louise and Philippe and Albert.

Friday, November 30, 2012

Nov 26, 2012

Bonjour mes amigos! 

Goodness, this week was just an all around good time!

We got a text from our zone leaders at the beginning of the week saying that as a zone, we needed 20 more new investigators to make our monthly goal (our month ended this week. I don't understand why a month isn't just the same as a regular month, but that's OK... I guess...). so they needed us to really go hard. the break down was for every companionship to find 3 new investigators. Which, individually isn't too hard to do! But to have every team in the zone do it simultaneously, that is where the difficulty level increases. So we had a big zone fast, and ended up finding 35 new investigators this week! That is incredible  Elder Beaumont and I found 5 new investigators this week! WOW! That is incredible for us! Super huge faith builder. Fasting is so powerful, for some reason... But hey! Who are we to fight against something that works?! 

We did splits this week! It was tons of fun! I got to drive around Chicoutimi! Man, the layout of that city is a little... wonky... =) I was with Elder Thia, so I got some hardcore French Lessons again, which was grand, because there is only so much that you can correct on your own when you don't know what mistakes you are making and how to make them better. 

Saturday we did another little trip around the Lake. Well, not around it at all, but just to a little town called La Doré. There is a man who lives there, who was baptized 10 years ago in Southern Alberta, who is Less active, so we decided to go out and visit him! What a fruitful visit it was! We had his address, and so we went and knocked on his door, and a man came to the door, opened it about 3 inches, said, I'll pass on my turn, thanks, and shut the door. I knew that wasn't our man though, because he spoke french Perfectly, and I had talked on the phone to the guy we were trying to find, and I knew that he had a very thick English accent, so I decided that we were going to knock on his door again. And again. And again, until he came back and we could talk to him. So I think we knocked about 6 or 7 times. And it was terrifying. After every knock I was certain that he was going to come to the door with a shot gun or something! But finally he came to the door, threw it open and was about to start yelling at us, but I got in faster with a large string of  "SORRYSORRYSORRYSORRYWEDONTMEANTOBOTHERYOU!" That caught him off guard, and he paused, so I had time to get in a "We are just looking for our friend Brad" And luckily our man knew exactly where Brad lived! He directed us to his house just a few streets (Ok, just around the corner, the town isn't big enough to have a few streets, there were 2ish...), and off we went. The guy Brad is super cool thought! He is from BC, Lived in Southern Alberta for a long time, working the summers in Waterton and stuff, specifically the Prince of Whales hotel!!! We had a nice little chat about that, since I have been to Waterton countless time! He was super nice though. Has a 7 year old daughter, and his wife is awesome too, and they were super excited to have us come back too! He met his wife in Waterton, they both worked in the POW Hotel for a summer. She is originally from La Doré. 

Like I said in my last email, time is flying by. This week I will officially hit my 6 month mark! BUT, Pres. Uchtdorf asked missionaries to always think like we are in the middle of our missions, so I'v actually been out for a year! 

Transfer Calls are this Saturday, so that will be insane! I hope to stay in Alma for the next transfer (Christmas!!) but whatever happens, happens! Next email you get will contain big news! If I stay I will spend at least 7.5 months in Alma, and if I leave, well that is just cool news!! But with that, Dont send me any mail to my apartment for the next week please. If I go and I don't get my mail before I go it will be like a month at least before I get the mail after it arrives in Alma... =) 

Anyways, I love you all!! And can't help but laugh at all the snow you guys have out there right now! We still have none. A little skift here and there, but other than that none! 

Elder Austen Oviatt

1. Remember how I told you we bought a lot of Chef Boyardee? Yeah, well, we made a pyramid out of them... =) 72 can exactly. Minus all the ones we already ate. 
2. We bought even more bananas this week. Like, 42. Hahahahah, needless to say, we finally have enough left over bananas to make banana bread! 

Monday, November 19, 2012

November 17, 2012

Well Hello there! 

How has life been these last few days? Can you believe that it has only been 7 days since my last email? I know I can't. There is this song, called the Canada Montreal Mission song. written by missionaries in the Canada Montreal mission, recorded on the mission (With permission from the mission president of course), and there is a line in it that goes "Days felt like weeks, weeks felt like days, two years felt like a dream" Well, I can totally tell you that yes, days feel like they never end. Transfers end and it feels like you just started them. I Can't believe it has almost been 6 months that I have been out here! 6 WHOLE MONTHS! Where has the time gone?!!? Anyways... 

This week has been a good one! We are always super busy, but we have tons of fun along the way. Elder Beaumont and I just seemed to get along super well since we first met each other, and the last few weeks we seem to be doing even better! Our personalities are the same enough, but different enough, you know? I know that I probably wouldn't be able to stand me if I wasn't me, or if there were two of me, and I've seen the opposite of me, and it's just... too opposite, I don't like that one either. So Elder Beaumont is a great mix of me and opposite of me. A composite you might say. Kind of like a fiberglass hockey stick. Light, and way overpriced. He is mostly me, but with enough opposite to keep me from punching him in the thyroid gland. And if I did do that, he would then have thyroid problems, and to compensate for his damaged thyroid, he would have to eat coconut oil for the rest of his life. Because, As I always say, We all know coconut oil is good for the thyroid gland! (Thank you Soeur Bouchard).

En Tout Cas, Yesterday we met a man who was part of the "Rose Croix". Now, I don't know if that translates into pink cross, or into rose cross in English, but irregardless, their beliefs are... Way out there. Something that did appeal to me in their beliefs, however, was that Humans origionated from Dragons. I WANT TO BE A DRAGON! But alas, we have lost this form, and now are doomed to walk the earth in these gravity-enslaved bodies... Haha, no, he was a super nice guy, and had probably was the most easy to understand person who has spoken to us in French ever, so that was awesome. I literally understood every single word he said! It was beautiful. 

We also did the Tour do Lac this week! We drove all the way around the Lac-St.-Jean! It was tons of fun, we met a whole bunch of people and actually have a few return appointments, so we will be doing the tour du lac again on the 24th! But, it is not pretty anymore, because everything is gray and dead, and the sun goes down at like 4:30, so we can't even really see anything after that either... But we will be making a trip out to a little town called La Doré, where a Less Active lives. He moved here and has never been to church, because he lives like 2 hours away. But we are going to go and re-activate him and his family (if he has a family? We don't really know anything about him). We are also going to visit a family called the Awashish. They have met the missionaries for a loooong time, have had all the lessons, want to get baptized, know the church is true, but live an hour and a half ish away from Alma, and she works on call at the hospital, so she can't ever make it to church, which sucks! But apparently her job is more stable now, so she may be able to make it out to church, which means that she could be baptized! So we are über pumped! 

We had our branch bowling activity too! We had invited a whole bunch of our friends, but only three showed up, and they called us half an hour before the activity started to see if they could still come. They were... HILARIOUS! they had never bowled before, and man, they were a great show! 

Yesterday I gave a talk in Sacrament meeting. I talked about Light. I rocked it. I think... I'm a little biased though... It's a little different giving a talk out here than back home though! First of all, it's in French... so that is nothing like talks in the Park. And second, because there are so few members, only one person talks so that they don't have to do a talk every 3 or 4 weeks. So I talked for like 30-40 minutes about Light. It was super awesome. I got to tell the Horse Camp Story. Yeah, I worked that in. Every one needs to know about the Horse camp. And Tex. R.I.P. Tex, You tasted, disgusting, Sorry, you tasted disgusting. I love this town so much, and they people who live in it. I would love to stay here for the next year and a half even. This experience is one of a kind, and I highly suggest that EVERYONE DO IT. Sisters, Elders, Yung'ins, and old fogies too! It is amazing. Just... GAH! Amazing!

I love you all, and I hope you have an amazing week! This week should be jam packed for us too, we have splitz and another trip around the lake! =) 

Love you all!

Elder Austen Oviatt

Ecclésiaste 11:7

La lumière est douce, et il est agréable aux yeux de voir le soleil.

Ecclesiastes 11:7

Truly the light is sweet, and a pleasant thing it is for the eyes to behold the sun.

This is just a super awesome scripture I found whilst looking up stuff for my talk. I like it a lot. However, this does not mean that you should stare at the sun for long periods of time. 8]

This is a typical breakfast here in Alma. You could say we eat like kings. Oatmeal.... Mmmmmmm....

 We recently had a stainless steel door installed in our apartment. I think it is super cool. 

 This is a picture of all the bananas we bought this week. We had planned to make banana bread with all the extras, but we ended up just eating them all... all 27 of them. 

We have a Google Plus account to to our district studies online, because we live to far away to do them in person, and everyone has a funny profile picture. This is ours. We thought it was prime, so we thought we would share it with you! 

November 12, 2012

Goodness Gracious Sakes alive! 

It has been FOREVER!! Like, 14 whole days! Life has been absolutely ridiculous lately!!

So, sorry I didn't write last week, we went to Quebec for three days, but we had to leave early because we took a back road that takes us about... 2 hours longer, and we stopped at all the little towns on the way down to buy "Epinglettes". Every town in Quebec has a "Town pin" and it is kind of a missionary tradition/contest to get as many pins as you can. Then nice thing about serving in Alma is that our area is so huge and has so many little towns in it that we can get so many epinglettes! Prime!

Quebec was super fun though, we were there Monday for our Zone activity, and we had a barbeque and played games in teh gym, then Tuesday we had zone conference, so President Cannon and Sis. Cannon came up and gave us a training, and the Assistants, and the Office missionaries (All the senior couples), and then Wednesday was zone study, where it was just us as a zone giving trainings and stuff. I had to talk on teaching less active lessons. Which was ridiculous for me, because I have never taught a less active lesson in my life! But I think I handled myself pretty well. All who know me should know that I kind of have a knack for talking about things that I have no clue about.

Oh! Hehehe, on the way down to Quebec, we hit a bird. That brought my total up to 3 animals hit in the truck. 2 birds with Elder Heder, and a bird with Elder Beaumont. And then, on the way home on Wednesday, it was dark out, so I asked Elder Beaumont to say a prayer to ask for safety as we drove back home, and AS HE WAS SAYING THE PRAYER, I ran over a rabbit. =P My bad! The animals were craazy that night though, I almost hit a second rabbit, AND, two cats! I hit the brakes in all 3 cases, and if I hadn't slowed down, I would have gotten them. But there was no ice on the roads, so we were OK.

We had a cool experiance this week, Sunday evening we went out to go knock on doors, and we decided to go knock this one street, and Elder Beaumont asked me where I thought we should start, so I pointed to a house, and we knocked on the door, got invited in, and were there for like an hour and a half! It was crazy! That never happens! The Lord is watching out for us. He knows that we are working hard and that we are trying, so as such, he is placing us in the right places at the right time. 

The weather here is weird. We recieved about 1/8th of a centimeter of snow yesterday, and it was melted by noonish, and the snow that wasn't gone, melted when it started to rain at 4:00. I don't know, chez nous, we always have snow by halloween, so I'm having a hard time believing that it is actually November. I think it's a lie, and that it is really just Early Octobre. Like, today I could go out with just a short sleeved shirt on! 

This week Elder Beaumont and I are going to take a trip around the lake! We are super excited, going to do missionary work in small little towns with crazy names, like Petite-Riviere-de-Sainte-Francois. =) I appologize that this is not a longer letter, but we have so much stuff that we have to do this week, since we completely missed our P-Day last week. we have two weeks worth of shopping to do, and two weeks worth of cleaning to do, and two weeks worth of letters two write! I love you all, and I hope you have fun in the Snow!! Because you have snow and we don't! 

Elder Austen Oviatt

We passed by the biggest Emu Farm in Canada. They probably have like 6 Emu's because I can't imagine that there is a large competition for that title in Canada... And I have no idea why that Chef hat sign is there, Maybe you can eat Emu too?

This picture was taken specifically for Eric Behr. This is a Korg Piano. Like your "Korg the Destroyer". Eric, I don't know if you read this, so if you don't, ask Deanna to show it to you. The guy said he bought it in the late 70's, early 80's. I thought it was prime! 

Monday, October 29, 2012

October 29, 2012

Bonjour mes amis! Comment-allez vous aujourd'hui? 

Look at me, typing in French, I'm so good hey?

So, first off, I heard there were some natural disasters this week, and I have no idea what happened. My companion who is from BC didn't get any news either. Anyways...

Lets see. We went bowling last week! On Monday, it was super fun! I suck! Hahaha, BUT, Elder Beaumont and I each got a strike, only one. We played two games, but each strike was caught on camera! I happened to be videoing his go, and BAM! STRIKE! Then, much later I told him, OK, I need a video too, get me, and then BAM! STRIKE! Haha, I didn't even bowl over 100. That is not that good at all. But it's OK, we had tons of fun.

We had kind of a rough week this week, not a ton of success, but that is OK, because we laughed a lot. We kept ourselves in good spirits. Elder Beaumont and I have a very similar sense of humor. It's really strange. We get along well, but most eeryone else thinks we are just crazy. =D 

We made a cake though, and brought it out to our friends. It's amazing how quickly people open up when you bring baked goods to their house! =D mmmmm... Cake and whipped cream! So delicious! 

We got a crazy phone call this morning though! Haha, we knocked for like 3 hours last night, and the sun went down at like, 5:30, so it was dark out all evening long. But lots of the time, people get mad when we knock on the door after like, 8:00 because it's "Soo late". Ridiculous. it's not even 8:30. =P Anyways, we like to leave pass along cards at all the houses that don't answer the door! And we put our name and numbers on them, so if people want to call us, they can! Well, this morning this man calls for "Monsieur Beaumont" And then starts chewing him out because when we came to his door it was already super late, and he was in bed so he didn't answer the door, and that when we pass by so late out people might think we are coming to break into their houses and they might answer the door with weapons, and so we were like, thank you sir, but may we ask what time we passed by your house? Thinking that because we tracted from 6 till 9 that we must have got him around 8:30, 8:45ish, but no. He said "Oh, it was at 7:30"  Uh..... Really? Hahahaha, it was so funny! People around here live a  "To bed with the sun, wake up at noon" kind of lifestyle. It's funny. 

But that's about it for this week. The next week will be a better email because We have splits planned again for this week, and then... Oh, actually, it will be a super fast email. Because NEXT week after that we are headed down to Quebec. From Monday till Wednesday. That is so long. Haha, But we are super duper excited!!!

Anyways, I love you all, and I shall try and actually get some pictures sent this week!

Elder Austen Oviatt

Not just the Hobbit, but the Hobbit in FRENCH.

 Fire Alarms in Quebec. Safe or not? It's up to you to decide

 Happy Birthday to Frere Ouellet!!
This is possibly the most embarrassing signs I have ever seen in my entire life... 

Monday, October 22, 2012

October 22, 2012

Dear Everyone. In the world.

How is it going?! Goodness, I sure hope life is as awesome for all you as it has been for me this week!

1st, We have eaten terribly this week. Not in that we haven't been eating well, but in that we just have so much food in our cupboards that we kind of just had to make space. Last monday after we did our shopping, we needed space in the freezer for the stuff we bought, so we had corndogs and french fries for lunch, with Red Champagne to drink (a Lac-St-Jean special, sparkling apple juice sort of deal), and then finished off with some Banana Split Ice Cream. Yeah you are all jealous. I don't know how we are doing it, but we are steadily acquiring an increasing amount of food. And we still have plenty of our monthly budget left over too? I don't know, but I aint going to complain!

2nd, we had splits with Chicoutimi. Again. It seems like we are doing splits every stinking week! But it is ok, because it is so much fun! Elder Christensen and I were together up here in ALma, and Elder Beaumont went down to Chicoutimi  with Elder Thia. We rocked socks. Elder Christensen hadn't met any of our investigators in Alma, so I scrapped our plans for the day and we went to try and introduce him to as many investigators as possible! He met Pierre and Sophie and Kevin and Celine, and Bertrand and a few others too. It was a great day. Elder Christensen and I talk very well together. He is also ridiculously insane. So that helps. 

Uh... Thursday we were out doing knocking and we came up to a door and there was someone standing in a doorway, and I thought to myself "oh great, these are always super awkward..." THen I noticed that he had a bible in his hand (he was looking away from us, so he didn't notice us) Then he turned around and saw us and his friend came out from the doorway too and they said "Hey! Were Jehovas Witnesses and we had a meeting here with these people, but it doesn't seem like they are here!" We then stopped and had a super quick conversation with them, but they had to leave. All in all, it was super cool, because I don't know how often you ACTUALLY run into TJ's doing their prostelytism. And also, it was comforting to know that we aren't the only ones who get smurphed (Stood up). =D

Then Saturday we made a pie for our Pentecostal friends and we gave that to them. They are pregnant. What a strange saying. They are pregnant. No, THEY aren't. She is, and he isn't. But what ever... Idioms. The recipe said to cook it for about an hour, and we had it in the oven for almost 2... so we were a little worried that it would be all burnt on the bottom, but it just wasn't done being cooked!! But then after 2 hours the top burnt a little (Surprise) so we made some whipped cream to cover up the burned spots. And I wasn't paying attention and I whipped the cream a little much and almost turned it into butter. It started getting a  little chunky. =D Chef Oviatt and Beaumont here, ready to take your order! But they said they really liked it, so that was good. 

Then Sunday we had supper out with our Branch President and his wife. And it was delicious..... It's nice to eat food that takes longer than 30 minutes to prepare. And Bless, Blueberry pie...

But here is our crazy spiritual experience for the week. Are you ready?

Saturday night we had a lesson planned with Pierre and Sophie. We had spent about an hour preparing for this lesson, which is ridiculously long, normally we spend 15 -20 minutes prepping a lesson. So we were so ready to go, and were ready to commit them to baptism and all that good stuff, but then Pierre and Sophie had friends over, so that blew those plans. THEN, Pierre invited us out back to his swing set (everyone here has 2 things. A pool, and a gliding swing set) to "talk" with his friend. It was super weird, Pierre was being super dark and like, not himself. He then started talking to us about conspiracy theories and the evil in the world and how EVERYTHING is evil, even when we are happy and good, that is evil, because there are so many poeple in the world who are suffering and... He talked about the Illuminati, the Free masons, (or stone masons?), the 9-11 attacks, the earthquake in Hatie and Japan, and it was just not an uplifting experience at all....  I just kept on trying to keep things as positive as I could, and testified about prophets and how important it is to have someone who has the light to guide us in such a dark world. Someone who was called by god and speaks the words of God for us specifically today. We ended up having to leave (Thank heavens) for transfer calls, but we left feeling totally sad, that Pierre was thinking of those things, and that we didn't get to invite them to church or to baptism... But then Sunday after church we got a call from Pierre, but we were in meetings so we couldn't answer the phone. Then we called him back, and his wife Sophie picked up the phone and said that Pierre got up at noon today because he stayed up really late. We were thinking "Oh great, now Sophie is going to think that we fed his conspiracy theory ideas and hate us..." But she said that he was up late reading that one book that we gave him. That one book would happen to be the Book of Mormon. He had read a little bit of it before, gotten a bit through 1st Nephi, but we hadn't had a chance to talk to him about it yet. But anyways, she gave him the phone and we talked to him, and he said that last night he just oped up the Book of Mormon to a random page (somewhere in Alma) and started reading and ended up reading for a few hours. He said that the things he read were like they were written yesterday for today. And that he doesn't know why or how, but that he just knows that this book is true. We were so excited we almost couldn't even speak. We may have felt like our "lesson" that we had with him was brutal, but it obviously flipped some sort of switch in his head that made him even more prepared and open for what he was going to read. We plan on going and meeting him as soon as possible, but he is out of town unfortunately for at least 2 days. I know that the Lord is preparing people here to recieve this message that we have to share. He is preparing people to accept the truth. "There are many people kept from the truth only because they know not where to find it." 

Doctrine et Alliances 84:85

Ne vous souciez pas d'avance de ce que vous direz, mais amassez continuellement dans votre esprit les paroles de vie, et la part qui sera attribuée à tout homme vous sera donnée à l'heure même.

Doctrine and Covenants 84:85

Neither take ye thought beforehand what ye shall say; but treasure up in your minds continually the words of life, and it shall be given you in the very hour that portion that should be meted unto every man.

I know that because Elder Beaumont and I took the time to prepare for our lesson with Pierre and Sophie that when it came down to it, even if we didn't know what we should have said to Pierre at that time about that specific subject, The Lord gave us at that very hour what we should say. 

Sunday, October 21, 2012

October 15, 2012

Well Hello!!!

My week this week!! 

Last Monday, we were getting into the truck after sending emails, and there was a Cop who drove by, so I waved at him. He then pulled into the parking lot and started talking to us. He was at the blood donor clinic with us, and first thanked us for donating blood, then asked us what we were doing briefly. It was kind of cool! Also, we saw the Northern lights on Monday. They were a little pansy compared to what I've seen before, but they were still good! 

Tuesday we were talking to a man, and he had a cord running from this machine in his shirt  pocket into his pants... weird, right? Yeah, well I didn't really want to ask him about it, but Elder Beaumont did... =D It was just a little electric thing, like they do at the physiotharapy clinic, just to help relieve pain. But both of his legs were super sore, so he had these things on his butt cheeks. And when Elder Beaumont asked about it, instead of just explaining what it was, he thought it was a much better idea to just SHOW us instead. =D =D It was so funny!! He stood up, undid his belt, turned around, and BAM, Luckily it wasn't too bad, the electrods weren't very low on him, so we didn't really see anything, but it was still a really funny experiance! We also got a media referel (from someone who visited Mormon.Org or and wanted something, like a BOM or a DVD) And it was from this guy who read the Book of Mormon like 15 years ago and KNOWS that it is true, and he lost his so he needed a new one. But his dad is a member, and his sister is a memeber, (In Ontario and Alberta) And he said that he wants to meet with us really really badly. But he works in Fort Macmurray, so we can only meet with him a few times ever few weeks, I believe he is out there for like 2 or three weeks and here for 1 or 2? I don't really know. He will be baptised though. =D

Wednesday we got a great quote from Elder Beaumont. We had been knocking and not having much success, and I said "well, at least were trying... And I can't think of anything that really rhymes well with trying to make a good inspiration thought for us..." And then Elder Beaumont said "If we're not trying, we're not.... Uh..... Um.... Uh... Frying............ Pan." It was basically great. 8]

Thursday it snowed for the first time here. It was just a few snowflakes, but it was snow none the less! Didn't stay, and in fact, this morning we woke up to a huge rain storm and it was been raining for like 3 hours... 

Friday was mostly uneventful as far as things that I need to tell you about go.

Saturday was awesome. Have I told you about our investigators Pierre and Sophie? Oh, I have, but I haven't used their names. Pierre and Sophie and the young couple that I talked about last week, with their daughter who came out with lipstick on? Anyways, they are super cool. They have been prepared to hear this message. Sophie loves asking us questions. and they are completely random and have seemingly no correlation from one to the next. But she told us "I love asking you guys questions because all your answers just make sense, they are good, and that is how I see it too!!" And we have answered questions about tithing, missionary service, Homosexuality, marriage, the bible, how the church is organized, prophets... Basically, all the things that people could get tripped up on =P And when we were explaining the Plan of Salvation/Happiness, we asked them where they believed we came from before we got to the earth, and Pierre said "I don't know where I came from. I know that I was somewhere, and that I will go somewhere after this earth too, but it's almost as if something was placed in my memories to stop me from knowing where I came from for some reason. But I know that my soul is old." So we explain that we are in fact children of God, he is the Father of our spirits. We lived with him and learnt and grew but were sent here to learn and to get a body and to have our own families. And Pierre closed his eyes while we were telling him this, and Sophie was on the edge of here seat, just soaking it in. Pierre after told us that he just stoped thinking and listened, and he could feel in his spirit or soul that what we were saying was completely true.  We are so excited. I can't even begin to express how I feel right now.  8] 8] =D

And of course, church was awesome. As always. I love Alma so much, and I don't know how I am going to survive when I get transfered out...   Oh, and Sunday night we had dinner with Kevin and Celine. We had steak. It was AWESOME. And we made a dessert, called Ambrosia. it was marshmellows and sourcream, and pineapple chunks and mandarin orange slices, and coconut. It was really good! But we didn't have a real recipe, so we just sort of tossed stuff in together. And you have to let it sit overnight, so it wasn't even like we could have added or changed things when the taste was off, we just had to eyeball it and hope for the best. Luckily it tasted great! Pfhew... if it hadn't we had a pumpkin pie we could have made and brought just in case. 

Oh right! It was thanksgiving last week! We made a super sweet thanksgiving dinner. I'll send a picture. 

This week we have splits on Tuesday!! I'm SO excited to spend some time with Elder Christensen. He is 'Da Bomb. I love that guy. And he is our district leader, so he is doing an apartment check, so we have to uber clean today to make sure everything is spotless! 

Big news guys. This Saturday we receive transfer calls. Can you believe it has already been 6 weeks since Elder Heder left?! I sure can't! Dang, time is just flying by. I actually had a dream not to long ago that my mission was over and that I had to go home and I just started to cry because it all went by so fast and I literally couldn't remember anything from my mission except for the time I spent in Alma. haha, but then the last few nights my dreams have been ridiculous and completly random. Normally I'm a missionary in all my dreams, and they at least have something to do with missionary work, but not these dreams. I don't even know... they are just weird. =D I like them.

Oh, So we totally forgot our pillows in Quebec when we were down there 2 weeks ago, and we get them back tuesday. You have no idea how excited I am. we borrowed some of those ergonomic pillows, that are supposedly super good for your neck so you can sleep on your side and not kink your neck. Well, there is a problem with that. The pillow is way to tall to be comfterble to sleep with on your back, and I can't sleep on my side for very long because of my shoulder. So I have been sleeping not so well here, and I am excited to be able to have a nice decent sleep tomorrow night...

But anyways, I love ya all, and am excited to hear about all the people who will be getting mission calls here soon now with that announcement! I expect to see many a girls headed out too!! You have no excuse anymore! =P

Love, Elder Austen Oviatt

Alma 31:38

Et le Seigneur pourvut à leurs besoins, afin qu'ils n'eussent pas faim et qu'ils n'eussent pas soif; oui, il leur donna aussi de la force, afin qu'ils ne sourrfissent aucune sorte d'affliction sans qu'elle ne fût engloutie dans la joie du Christ. Or, cela se fit selon la prière d'Alma; et cela, parce qu'il avait prié avec foi.

Alma 31:38

And the Lord provided for them that they should hunger not, neither should they thirst; yea, and he also gave them strength, that they should suffer no manner of afflictions, save it were swallowed up in the joy of Christ. Now this was according to the prayer of Alma; and this because he prayed in faith.

The Lord is providing for us. We are finding super sales at the stores, we have running water, and we go jogging, even though it is nasty cold outside. (OK, we haven't gone jogging for like 4 days...) But, things are a little difficult on a mission. It is not all walking on cloud nine. Sometimes you drop down to cloud 8 or even 7! Gasp! But, like it says, the afflictions that we suffer will all be swallowed up in the joy of Christ. And I have seen that already. I love the Lord and I love this work that I am doing. I am so grateful for this chance I have to spend two years serving others with all my heart, might, mind and force. A good friend sent this to me as her prayer for me, and I would like to pass this along, to all the other missionaries out there, Alma 31:38 is my prayer for you!

1. Thanksgiving dinner. It was basically awesome. Oh yeah, we bought bryers icecream on sale for 2.50, regular $7.00. Regular bargain finders here!

 2. Here is another steal of a deal! Or... just a steal... Babies are on sale this week for buy one, get one free!!

Monday, October 8, 2012

Goodness Gracious, I am so pressured for time Again...

Hello all my friends!!!!

How was life been? Great! Glad to hear it!

Lets see! Monday we drove down to Quebec for our Zone Study! We took a crazy back road to Canyon Saint Anne. Beautiful... And I think I may have actually seen real mountains!

Tuesday, we drove back, saw some more beautiful sights. Man, Autumn is truely beautiful. I mean, it's nice in Alberta too, but it only lasts like 4 days. It has been bright and orange for like 2 weeks up here!! We have been working hard, and have found an awesome young couple. They have 2 children and she runs a daycare in her home during the day. But their 4 year old? daughter asked us if we had girlfriends and we said no. Then like 2 minutes later she came out of the bathroom and was wearing lipstick. it was ridiculously cute! 

We have been working hard to find people to teach, and the Lord is watching over us and providing for us, but he is making us work for our success too. ; ) 

HAHAHAHAH,  I have to tell you about Tuesday... Dang... So we were coming home up the road to Alma from Quebec, and we saw the  "Portes do L'Enfere" sign (I'm sure I sent that one.. the one that means "the gates of hell") so we decided to take a few minutes to go check it out! Thinking it would be some beautiful nature thing because in Rimouski there is "gates of hell that is a waterfall and apparently it is stunning! So we go and ended up driving for an hour and a half on this crazy back road, dirt and rocks and stuff because there was nothing there. It was absolutely beautiful though! And the road connected right back to the Highway, so that was very lucky. The worst part was we were at the end, like, could see the highway, and we came to this little bridge with a "Pont fermé" sign. Which means bridge closed. We were so so so chapped, if we had to drive ALL the way back, then drive ALL the way back AGAIN... Gah!! =D But the bridge was actually fine. We had to use our 4 wheel drive a few times actually, it was a little sketchy in parts, but it made for an awesome adventure I will never ever forget.

Conference. WHAT!>?!!?! Really truely the only thing I can say about conference is that I am SUPER excited to hear about all the mission calls that will be coming in the next few months!! That is so crazy!!!

But no, really, conference was great, I actually payed lots of attention during it, which was awesome! I took notes too! I learnt a lot more than I usually do, which makes me a little sad that I didn't pay more attention earlier, but Oh well, we live and learn, right?!

Anyways, I love you all, and am super excited to have a nice quiet week here in Alma. No trips, no visits, just plain old Missionary work!

J'aime et j'espére,

Elder Austen Oviatt

It's been a while since I've done a spiritual thought. I have a little bit of time here, so I'll do one, but only in English.

Luke 15:4-6

4. What man of you, having an hundred sheep, if he lose one of them, doth not leave the ninety and nine in the wilderness, and go after that which is lost, until he find it?
5. And when he hath found it, he layeth it on his shoulders, rejoicing.
6. And when he cometh home, he calleth together his friends and neighbors, saying unto them, rejoice with me; for I have found my sheep which was lost.

I love this scripture. Actually, this whole chapter is amazing. The Lord loves us all, and will do anything to come and help us return to the safety of the fold. Where we are protected from the wolves of the world. The love that the Savior has for us all is something that I am trying to emulate and express in every aspect of this work as a missionary. As a representative of Christ, if we don't emulate his greatest quality, his unconditional love, then people aren't going to be very convinced by us. 

This is (or at least was at one point) the favorite scriptures of one of my best friends. He has set a great example for me, and has been a huge support in my life. We have had fun together, and we may have also gotten in trouble one or two times together too. But I want him to know that I love him, and that I am so grateful for all he has done in his life. I have often looked to him as an example and a guide, and I'm sure he never even knew it. Thank You

Old School Gas Pump!!!

 Yeah, that's my birthday!! 

Canyon Saint Anne!

We may actually have driven all the way to Salt lake city! Or we may not have... 

Water. I want to just go swimming in that lake!

Danger. Mormon Missionaries in the Area.

No one was home... I left a Book of Mormon though!

So Orange! Something we really don't have in Alberta...


Monday, October 1, 2012

October 1, 2012: this one made me laugh


OK! So, first off, I would like to start and appologize to everyone because this is the only email that I am sending out this week. We had an awesome week! And by that I mean we spent way to much time with the Elders in Chicoutimi! We had splits on Wednesday, and I got to hang out with my good friend Elder Thia Soui Tchong. He is from France. Not Asia. Actually, more accurately, he is from La Reunion which is a little island off the Coast of Madagascar. But La Reunion is a French Colony, so he is aFrench citizen, and now lives in France with his Family, oing to school. Actually, he NOW lives in Chicoutimi. details. I learnt a lot from him, because he is a native French speaker, so we talked ni French allll the time, which was cool! And the splits were super super productive.

 I have to tell you about the friend we met! We had a lesson set up with Roger, to go give him a spiritual thought kinda deal and to introduce him to a new missionary. But he had a freind named Manuel there, and we were like, Dang, this is going to be a little bit awkward, but he ended up being crazy interested. I gave him a book of Mormon, and we started the lesson. We were sharing scriptures and stuff, And I was going to take my turn to read, and he was like, Is it OK if I read it? Uhhh..... Let me put it this way.... YES. He was super excited, but actually lives in Chicoutimi, so he isn't our investigator. He.... Ah, I'm just super happy for them!! He has a baptismal date for the 4th of November, and he will be totally good for it too!

 But, I'll tell you about this weekend, then I have to peace, and I will try and update you next week!! 

We had church in Chicoutimi this week, because there was a stake meeting, like the ones you do before General conference and stuff, and so Alma and Chicoutimi met together which was SO MUCH FUN! But, we had Choir practise at 8:15, so Chicoutimi invited us to sleep over at their place Saturday night so we could just get up and go to Church and not have to leave at like 7 to be there on time. So we went there. Then we stayed there Sunday evening, because we have to drive down to Quebec today, and it is a waste of Klicks to drive up to Alma, then back down the Quebec the next day because its like 40 minutes closer from Chicoutimi then from Alma. We went to a DA with Chicoutimi, which technically breaking the rules... because you are only supposed to have one set of missionaries per DA, but it wasn't like we could just go home and eat ourselves... But SHHHHH....... it's a secret, don't tell anyone!! And then after that we came home and went to sleep and stuff, and now it is monday, and we are sending Emails and then will be going to Sainte-Annes Canyon for our P-Day Zone Activity. I'm super pumped about it, a nice day of Hiking! OOH!! And we are having interviews with President Cannon!! I'm so excited about that it's not even funny!! 

Anyways, I have to go. I love you all!! Don't pee into the wind.

Elder Austen Oviatt

Sunday, September 30, 2012

September 24, 2012

OK. I'm sick and tired of technology. No pictures this week because the computer wont let me send more than one at a time and my camera just died. I guess next week you will just get a butt load of pictures. 

OK!! Lets see!! How has my week been?
First, sorry again that the email was a little pitiful last week, there was nothing that I could do because the draft that had been saved, got erased also... 
Elder Beaumont! He is super awesome. He is crazy hard working, and had jumped right in to helping me out, which I am grateful for, because I honestly have NO idea what I'm doing! =P I have been trying to teach him how to be a good missionary, but I guess we will find out how I did when the next transfer comes along and I get switched out and he has to be a trainer. He is funny, and we enjoy telling each other crazy stories about our ridiculous adventures as delinquent teenagers. He speaks great French, and has been teaching me how to speak better every time I open my mouth. And I do that a lot. =D He loves musicals, which is great, because I sing Les Mis to myself all the time, and that is his favorite! He is taller than me ( Big surprise) and we get along great! Thus far at least. The Honey moon period should wear off here in the next few days, and we will find out how much we bother each other. If I don't email, next week, it's because he probably tied me up and left me in the closet in the apartment. I wouldn't blame him if he did. I couldn't stand living with me for more than 3 weeks either. 

We really haven't done anything super exciting this week. It seems as though in the last few weeks we have lost most of our investigators, so we are currently searching for new ones. And we are searching a lot. We have spent a lot of time just knocking on doors. It was getting a little bit discouraging the last few days, after doing 4 or 5 hours of knocking a day, but yesterday was great, we were both very happy and had an awesome time walking around, in the rain, with the wind, freezing to death, sharing the light that we have. We met this guy from Hungary last night, who came to Quebec "Because his friend was coming and didn't want to go alone". He has been here for probably 40 or 50 years since then. If that isn't the definition of Crazy, I don't know what is. 

We have a great week planned out this week though. Wednesday we are doing splits. I'm going to stay here with Elder Thia from Chicoutimi, and Elder Beaumont will stay with Elder Christensen in Chicoutimi. We will have supper at the Bouchards house on Wednesday evening because the Bouchards have a picture they want to show him. It is a picture of his Dad. His dad served a mission HERE, IN ALMA, like 25 years ago!! Now he is back and the Bouchards are so excited! Then, we are going to come back together Thursday morning, and then Sunday we are headed back down to Chicoutimi for church there. There is a stake meeting, so Alma is all headed down, and then next monday we have Zone Study, so we will stay in Chicoutimi Sunday afternoon and evening, and then carpool down on Monday to Quebec. So Actually if I don't email next week it's because we were on our way to Quebec, and didn't have time to use the computers. Not because I'm tied up in the closet. 

Ooh! This week we were joggin in the morning, and there was a police car just chilling in this dudes driveway, so we decided to run by and see what was going on, and what happened was he was watching this Poucupine! There was a huge porcupine walking around Down Town Alma, when we ran past it was climbing its way up the steps to an apartment building. It was really funny! 

Also, we recently drove out to the middle of nowhere to find an old investigator in the area book. And it was late, and it was raining, and we had to walk down this creepy dark path in the woods to get to this house, and no one was there, and it was pitch black out, and we were really scared, but we went to his neighbors house to ask if the guy we were looking for was still living there, and the neighbor said no, and kept of like, laughing a really airy laugh, and it was terrifying, and I was certain that he was going to chase us down this wooded path and chop us up into little pieces. We had fun. =) 

Anyways, I don't have much else to say this week! Other than we are working hard and are praying hard, and are playing hard. And having a great time while doing so! Keep on Trucking! You are all Geenos!


Elder Austen Oviatt

Monday, September 17, 2012

Hey Guys, 

Uh, lets see... First, My new companion! He is from Abbotsford BC, and is super awesome. His name is Elder Beaumont. He took French Immersion in school, all the way from Grade 1 through high school too! So he is a little ahead of me in many aspects of speaking French, but at the same time, he is still getting used to the "Alma" accent, so I win there =P He is not afraid to speak up, which is awesome! 

 I don't know if you remember Brock and Jones Freeman? But Their family comes from Abbotsford too, and Brock actually lived with Elder Beaumont's family for a year before his mission!!! So cool! 

Elder Beaumont is bringing a new energy to the mission, alI can say he is great, but he just has a few rough spots! And so do I. He will be teaching me a ton!

Elder Austen Oviatt!!!

Epic photo time. This is Lac-Ste.-Jean. It's huge, and when it's windy, it looks like the ocean.

 This is a picture from the Other side of the lake at a place called Dolbeau-Mistassini. Crazy names, but beautiful rivers!

Weird Poutine that I ordered that had canned peas on it... it looked nasty, but it tasted pretty good!

District Car, together for one last time!!!! ='(

 Elder Heder, off to go speak some Chineese! 

 Elder Beaumont! Who actually is super good friends with Brock Freeman. And by that I mean Brock lived with his family for a year before his mission!!!

 So, I don't know if I talked about how big this area is, but it's huge! Like, the drive from Montreal to Quebec is 3 hours....

 I cant resist. Here is a beautiful sunset picture! 

Monday, September 10, 2012

September 10, 2012

Bonjour mes Amis! 

Man, this week has been great!! Haha, I have to tell you about our last P-Day.

After we sent our emails we went out to go shopping and we needed to go to the bank too. Well, I assume it was Labor Day weekend back at home too, but I'm not sure. Something you learn about Labor Day in small towns is that it actually is a day for EVERYONE to not work. All of the grocery stores were closed. All of the banks were closed. Everything! It was kind of funny! But then we did nothing all day, because we couldn't go shopping or get our banking done. We just sat in the apartment and cleaned and played Frisbee. So Tuesday morning we ran to the "Maxi" (Quebec's version on Super Store) and did our grocery shopping. Then we headed down Tuesday evening to Quebec for Zone Study. Elder Heder and I had to give a training, and all of the other new missionaries too. And by new missionaries I mean the ones who aren't going home in this transfer or the next. We ate at a buffet, and I think I gained like 10 pounds. I eat way to much at buffets because I go, PFH, if I'm going to spend my money, I'm going to get my moneys worth! So literally 4 or 5 plates of food, then 2 plates of desert and a bowl or two of ice cream. Then you sit in the truck for 3 hours and drive back up to Alma. You just feel so great after! And to be honest, it usually takes a day or two before you are able to poop too. But that might just be because I eat a lot of Chinese food at the Buffet. We were back Wednesday in time to work a bit that night. Ah, we also had 3 Dinner Appointments this week. We had crepes at one of them, which were super good, but the only thing we had to put on them was maple syrup and brown sugar. Which normally isn't that bad, but when you eat like 4 or 5 crepes, you just start to buzz with all the sugar in your system. But I love maple syrup, so I didn't complain! 

Saturday night we had a dinner with a non member family, actually with the Evangelists! And we went to help the husband move a piano. He said "5, 10 minutes tops!". Wrong. But, everyone is always wrong when they say things like that. It was a 1200 lbs piano, and we ended up having 5 of us to move the dang thing. Elder Heder and I were in our dress clothes, and it was raining, and the piano was dirty, so we basically destroyed our clothing. And it took like 30 minutes to move this piano. It was retarded, but we had tons of fun! And then we ate Tacos. So that was great.

So, I didn't bring a rain jacket with me on my mission. Don't ask me why, I think I though I would have more time during P-Days to go out and buy one, or that I would be somewhere that there were stores that I could find a rain jacket at. But I don't, so I wear one of Elder Heder's spare jackets. We aren't the same size, so I really don't fit in it. It looks hilarious. But I don't have a picture. Anyways, We were out knocking on doors the other day, and it was raining, and we were soaking wet. And in Alma, there are TONS of people who don't have doorbells, but they have the wires sticking out of the wall still, so if you are lucky, you can actually still ring the doorbell, by rubbing the wires together! We do it all the time. But anyways, it was raining, and we came to a house without a doorbell, and so I grabbed the wires and I went to ring the doorbell, but I hadn't realized that the parts that I had grabbed were not covered in the plastic wire coating, and so when I got the doorbell to ring, what actually happened was that I totally zapped myself. It didn't hurt, but I was so not expecting it that it made the shock a little worse than it was. It was funny though.

Saturday night we received transfer calls. Big changes. We lost 13 missionaries, and 18 new missionaries are coming in to Quebec. With 16 last transfer and 18 this transfer we have 34 new missionaries. that means there are a lot of people training. And people who aren't training or being trained, are in leadership positions. So everyone has a job. Everyone. Elder Heder got called out of Alma, and is going to Montreal. As a Zone leader! 5 transfers in and he is headed off to be a ZONE LEADER!! And, even crazier than that, he is being sent to a Chinese Branch! He gets to learn a little bit of Chinese!!! And go to church in Chinese once every two weeks! Hehehe! That's so cool!! As for myself, I am training!! I get a brand new missionary, and I decide his fate. MWAHAHAH!! No, I'm actually a little bit terrified. This is a big deal! His first impression of real missionary work is resting on my shoulders! I show him that we study hard, work hard, and play hard. And in that order too. But I know that if I wasn't ready for this responsibility, then I wouldn't be training, so the Lord knows I can do it, and that is very reassuring! I'm not super super worried, but there are somethings that I'm not entirely sure how I'm going to deal with them. I hope he can speak french though, because that is something we do a lot of up here in Alma. =D 

Anyways, our area is doing very well. We are always teaching lessons, always doing our best, and always seeing the miracles from the Lord. He is watching over us, and he is watching over this area. It's like Elder Heder says, Alma is booming because of the strength of the Members here. They really do have some of the strongest members that I have ever seen, it is amazing.

I love you all, and I hope that you have a good weekend!!


Elder Austen Oviatt

P.S. Because I'm training, that means I'm the senior companion, which means that I get to drive the truck!!!!! So excited for that!!!!

 Portes De L'Enfer. That means The Doors of Hell. Cool, hey?! I want to go visit it, but it's a little to far away to just drive down to for the afternoon. 
I had a whole bunch of other pictures, but by camera deleted them all?!?!? So chapped. Maybe Elder Heder can send me some of the ones I want to send to you...

 Trying to take a beautiful shot of the scenery. This strange black think kept getting in my way, I had no idea what it was. It was the antenna. Good for me. Hehe, why did I ever think I was smart?

Elder Heders huge rain jacket.

Huge leaf. It made me feel like an Ewok.