Friday, July 29, 2016


Transfer 10 (7-25-16). What went down:

Monday- fun pday. Went to Èze, saw a castle. Tranquille.

Tuesday- we saw Frère F, shared a thought, ate lunch with him. Had horse meat! It was delicious. Then we got on a train to Marseille for our conference.

Wednesday- multi-zone conference in Aix en Provence. We talked about our mission initiative "Feux De Joie" (French for bonfires) and how we can start these sparcs in members. It was really fun. Elder Sauro and I presented on Ancestry and indexing, which went very well. After the conference, I got to talk a lot with an old comp, Elder Hansen, who is going home in a week! He's at the end of his mission, it was good to see him again and catch up. He was doing so well, and it made me very happy to see him before going home. After that, we drove back to Nice with the Bastia (Corsican city) frères, which was a blast. They are super fun missionaries.

Thursday-exchange with Elders Ramsey and Wilkey from Bastia! We got Elder Ramsey's legality, had a tombez-vous, then went to Monaco to visit a member! They got a kick out of being in Monaco haha, it's a very fancy place. We had to take off our tags which was weird. Just before our RDV, a lady stopped us and asked us if we were Mormon. We got to talking, and she told us her sister is a member in Italy, and she went to church in Italy a lot! So we exchanged numbers and she wanted to come to church this week! We're really excited about her. Her name is V, and she has huge potential! Our RDV with Sr. C went really well. After, we took a bus back to Nice, then the Bastia Frères dropped us off at Cagnes Sur Mer, right next to Nice, for our RDV. We ate dinner with the M family, they are really awesome. It was great being on exchange with Elder Ramsey and Wilkey. They are so sick. I wish I was in Bastai with them all the time!

Friday- we went to Cannes to turn over an old apartment to the agency, we had to drop the keys off, we signed for the apartment and everything. We got back, did transfer recommendations for next week's transfer calls, had RCM, then we all went with our DMP to the Tep's for dinner! It was cool going to a RDV with our DMP.

Saturday- we cleaned a lot (this week's district meeting is cancelled mission-wide for the "DeClutter Olympics." We got rid of lots of stuff! We cleaned a lot too. We saw L and E, both RDVs went very well.

Sunday-normal stuff, and a great dinner with the other elders and members to close things out. K's non-member aunt was there (who asked for a BoM to give to Kevin's non-member mom, how cool is that?) so we went over the plan of salvation. It went super well, minus one member bringing up outer darkness, which triggered a "there are no women in outer darkness, it's only the 'sons' of perdition!" That discussion lasted longer than it ever should have, in that it happened at all. Bon. A good day!

What I learned:
“Duty is the sublimest word in the English language. Do your duty in all things. You cannot do more. You should never wish to do less.” - General Robert E. Lee. This is something I learned this week. "Fear God, and keep his commandments: for this is the whole duty of man." -Ecclesiastes 12:13.
This is all we have to do.

“A man filled with the love of God,” wrote the Prophet Joseph Smith, “is not content with blessing his family alone, but ranges through the whole world, anxious to bless the whole human race.” (History of the Church, 4:227.) This is what happens to us, in our hearts, when we do our duty!

(free) Advice I have:
"True Greatness," by Elder Howard W. Hunter, April 1982 Gen Conf. A wonderful talk about what that important word means. One way to achieve this in the family, as President McKay taught: “The most important thing a father can do for his children is to love their mother."

Thanks for listening! I love you all. Remember the people of Nice in your prayers. They need them more than I do.
Love, Elder MacArthur

I don't know what we are looking at

Elder Hansen's comps!

Monaco-sans plaques

A zone photo collage I made today!

Cool Porsche museum in Monaco with elder Wilkey!

Me and Louis in a parc haha!!

We met a trumpet playing guy on the streets!

The cool trumpet park
The gardens of a mansion in Èze!

Wednesday, July 20, 2016


Hey all. This week was different, for sure.  What went down:

Monday was sick. We hiked Dog's Head (Tête de Chien), a little mountain next to Monaco. The view was beautiful and it felt good to walk around and hike in shorts and a t shirt. Elder Raherimandimby and I went back earlier, I bought a wallet, renewed my bus pass, then we chilled at the apt for a little before meeting the others at the mall. I was looking to buy a French watch for soldes, but all the good ones were gone. Then we emailed, had some food, and we went to the Single Adults' FHE. We shared a thought on the temple and invited everyone to find an ancestor to bring to the temple. K's aunt, who is starting to investigate the church, loved the thought, as it cleared up some questions that were raised at church last Sunday. Hopefully we'll have our first lesson with her this Friday!

Tuesday was phenomenal. We had studies as usual, lunch, lots of calls, a few RDVs fixed, then we tried some business contacting. The idea with this is that amis found at business places will have less problems with money, getting to church, transportation, etc. than other people. Plus, we know how to find them again! So I saw a record store, and we popped in and I talked to the owner about jazz for a while. He was playing some John Coltrane and he was sparc'd that I liked it. I asked if he had MoTab, but he told me that "il y a que la musique du diable ici, mon garçon" so I had a good laugh. He said that his religious and political views stay at home, so I got a little stonewalled there. But he accepted our card! I did sweeten the deal by buying a 5 euro CD haha (The Jazz Messengers) that has some of my favorites on it, namely Art Blakey & Lee Morgan. Win-win. After that, we went contacting in Gaibaldi Square, and taught a lesson to two women our age, C and O. We got their number, they have our book (the Lord's book), and they said they'd talk to us again! They were really cool. We also met a young German woman named S who needed help moving the next day. We exchanged numbers and were frantically searching for Das Buch Mormon at our apt when she texted us saying "thanks for the offer, but please don't come over tomorrow." It was a real shame! We finally found the book, we'll find some way to get it to her. We have her address so it shouldn't be too hard.

On Wednesday, we saw our ami Al next to Monaco, and taught her about temples. It went really well, but she might be moving in a few months so she didn't want to accept a baptismal date (for that reason). Hopefully she stays! We got back, called people, contacted, then went to a church dance! We met the friends of members, got their numbers, and left haha. We couldn't dance anyways!

Thursday, exchange with Elder Loveland from Toulon! We saw a member, contacted, got four numbers! It was good fun. Not much else to report.

Friday. As you may have heard, there was a large terrorist attack in Nice Thursday night, just five blocks away from us. We didn't hear anything after going to bed Thursday night, we woke up the next morning and realized everyone had been trying to call us! Our mission president called our phones 40 times, members had been sent to check up on us, but we slept through it all! Embarrassing haha. Now we make sure to leave our phones on loud, not vibrate, when we go to bed. We were told to stay in the whole day, so we found things to do. Some awesome members brought us food (we were six in the apartment) and we ordered Pizza Hut so it wasn't all bad. It was a very somber moment in Nice. But carry on we must. All the missionaries and members of the church were not physically harmed, which is a great blessing.

Saturday was good, we taught Al and M, contacted, normal stuff.

Sunday was a normal day. M and Al came to church, which was always cool. I translated a talk at the pulpit for Brother Os, the Australian second counselor in the bishopric. It was weird, giving a talk, but not being responsible for the words haha.

What I learned:
A lesson I learned this week: never fear. My inclination at first was to be afraid, but I realized that there are much scarier things in this world. These attacks are nothing to be afraid of. I will not fear because Heavenly Father wants it to be that way! I take great courage in remembering Elder Packer's words of being "just plain never frightened." That is something I am working towards. I have never been a courageous person, but the gospel has helped me go in that direction, and being a missionary of course helps as well. I hope to always fear God more than Man, but I really hope to always LOVE God more than Man. Fear is transitory and doesn't last, it is a poor motivator. With time, it is easily overcome. Of course the scriptures mean "respect God," not fear Him. But our love for Him motivates us more fully to keep his commandments. Love is insurmountable, untreatable, untouchable in the right circumstances. Sometimes I find myself loving man more than God. I try to reverse this, and when I do, I know that He is happy with me.

(free) Advice I have:
"Anonymous," by President Monson, April 1983 Gen Conf. A super talk that stresses the joy we can have when we give and serve and love, not letting our left hand knoweth what our right hand doeth!

Love you all! Thanks for being great.
Elder MacArthur

The view from the Eze castle!

Roman ruins

French cheese ad

Monday, July 11, 2016

July 11th, 2016!

Hello hello! This week was tres tres bien passé.

What went down:
Monday- was already discussed last email.

Tuesday- a few tombezvous but ça va. We saw a less-active named M (who's getting re-activated next Sunday!! We talked about the area plan with him. He loves talking to us. He has few friends in France, most of them are back in Haiti. He just needs someone to talk to sometimes. Then we planned out our zone run for Thursday, we will go around and install smoke detectors and Carbon monoxide detectors in all the apartments. We also planned a zone activity and that took planning, calls, prayers, discussion, and whatnot. Then we ate dinner with F, an exuberant member who thinks he's Italian. It's pretty funny. He's really nice, he loves the missionaries. He calls us all his sons. It's weird. I think he's convinced that we are his real sons. We also talked about the Inter-regional plan with him. Then we saw C, a really cool member who's been having a rough time and confided to K, and K told us so we went over, shared the deliverance story of Alma's people in Mosiah 23-24 and gave her a blessing. She was really grateful! She has a great family. One of her daughters is going to BYU in August,  the other is going on a mission!

Wednesday- amazing!! We went right next to Monaco to a little town called Cap d'Ail, where we met a Portuguese potential amie named Al. Elder Sauro met her a while ago, and gave her a  Portuguese Book of Mormon. We did the restoration with her and explained importance of the Book of Mormon as proof of this restoration. She was intrigued by the book, expressed an interest, and promised to start reading. She also agreed to come to church next Sunday to see how it is! After that, we took the bus back (about 50 minutes) to Nice, and we saw M at her apartment. We read 1st Nephi 4 with her, and she kept saying how she feels happier than she used to since she's started coming to church, reading he Book of Mormon, etc. We helped her realize that it's the Holy Ghost she's feeling, and that after baptism, she will have those feelings even more-much more. She kept saying that she wants to be baptized, but still won't accept a date because she doesn't want to feel forced; she wants it to be 100% her decision. After that, we went up to the church to plan out our zone member weekend, a little activity to help us work with members. Then we had ward council, and that was the day. At ward council, D told us that soon, we might have the chance to meet U2 (we still haven't forgotten!) so that was exciting.

Thursday-delicious. We had our Nice district meeting, Pizza Hut for lunch (a lot better in France, actually) then we went to Antibes to install their new smoke and CO detectors. Then we went to Toulon and stayed the night there and installed their detectors as well. It was fun to get to see lots of zone members!

Friday-great day. Legendary. We had district meeting in Cannes,and had Steak n' Shake for lunch! Then we went to St. Raphael to put in their smoke and CO detectors. Then we came back and got two new amis, L and C! They are weird, we are not sure about them but they bought us ice cream (so far, so good!) then we read the Book of Mormon with L.

Saturday-we went to a picnic at Colline du Chateau (Castle Hill) with some members who were visiting with a sister missionary who returned from her mission the day before I got in. Her name was sister Patrick, I think. Funny story: her brother and parents just got home from their missions in Tahiti, her dad was the mission president. Her brother knows elder Sauro's ex-girlfriend, and sister Patrick knows my ex-girlfriend. That's hilarious!! What a coincidence. Then we finished the day with planning after a Rdv with M. She's gonna get baptized soon!

Sunday was very rewarding. We actually missed sacrament meeting because we waited for our amie Al to come from Monaco, and she came! We were just an hour late, unfortunately. M came as well. Al liked church, she didn't say much (she's very quiet and timid) but she said she'd come again, and we're going to continue to see her. After church, we had a big ward meal where I talked to M a lot (she talks a lot, so if you don't escape, it's like a tornado-you can't get out) but it was very rewarding. She said that God told her to be baptized, but she is just waiting on an answer from her deceased father. She likes "talking with her ancestors," so to her, having the blessing of her father is very important. So I say: c'mon, Tevye!! But, true to her character she'll be baptized with or without her dad's approval. Then, I gained a testimony of member work for myself. We visited our elders quorum President. We talked about the area plan, and he actually had not yet written goals down on the card. So he and his wife did that, asking us questions and whatnot, sharing stories. Then at the end, we asked "who else could enjoy doing these things with you or with us?" And we got two referrals! I have seldom had that happen on my mission. Extremely rare. But how much better is this with members?! Working without them is like using a LEGO hammer to build a life-size castle. It's like trying to travel across the world on a pogo stick. It's like trying to drive people to heaven in a golf cart. It's so much better with members!! I knew that in my head, but until yesterday, I did not know that in my heart. Frere R is awesome. He's a really genuine guy. He taught me a good lesson: missionaries need to gain the members' trust in order to get to teach their friends. They all like us; they all think we are nice guys; but if we don't show that we are responsible, then we won't earn their trust. A good lesson was learned.

(free) Advice I have:
"Become a Star Thrower," by Elder David B. Haight, October 1983 Gen Conf. An excellent talk on doing what we can to rescue our brothers and sisters who are, for some reason or another, stranded on the beaches of life, and need help getting back to the "living waters" of the Gospel. It doesn't matter why they are stranded. What matters is that they need our help, and we must help them.

I love you all! Merci merci merci pour votre soutien constant. Avec votre aide, je m'améliore et je suis reconnaissant pour cela. Je vous aime! À plus
Elder MacArthur

Up around Beausoleil and Monaco!

More mountains

Speaks for itself

Monday, July 4, 2016

7-4-16! Happy Birthday, America!

Hello everybody!  I don't feel much like writing really, this one will be a quick rundown...

Monday: Trained up to Lyon for a conference on Tuesday. We ate at a Korean buffet. It was insanely good. We stuffed ourselves. I'm getting fat. Expensive but worth it!

Tuesday: Mission leadership council. President talked about 2 big points for our mission, the first change is about exchanges. Now, zone leaders only do exchanges with district leaders. So we'll have lots more time to work in our sectors, that'll be nice. Less trains, less stress. I am happy about it. The idea is to bring district leaders in to "show them how it's done," show them a model sector, then help them transmit those things to their district members. It's teaching a man to fish, rather than just giving each zone members a few fishes per transfer. It will really help us a lot!

Second point: In order to achieve our 250 baptisms goal, we will focus this transfer on member work by helping them work on the inter-regional plan set forth by the general authorities, the area presidency. It'll bring lots of success, I am sure. At the end of the day, we flew to Bordeaux with the zone leaders and the Talence STLs. One of the sisters, Soeur Filbrandt, told me a lot about her story, and all the opposition she's had (and still has) on her mission. She's a great example to me. I also met Elder Barben, the new Bordeaux zone leader who is with Elder Richmond. He's awesome. Elder Barben is super humble, funny, kind, and a great leader. We had lots of laughs together. It was really fun to meet new people and to make a few friends.

Wednesday: Trains to Brive for legality. We got in late, and some Brive members came in clutch and gave us a ride to the Tulle prefecture! They are awesome. We had Brive eclairs too, brought by the Brive Freres. They are awesome as well, Brive is in good hands. After that, we went to Toulouse and down to Montpellier, where we stayed the night. We stayed in the four man apartment, it was really fun! I love everyone there, they're all good friends.

Thursday: We go back in, and did some stuff.

Friday: Zone training. It was lots of fun! Then, weekly planning.

Saturday: Busy! Visited recent converts, and Frere Plé, who is in a clinic right now. We gave him a blessing, he was very grateful! He's a great missionary himself.

Sunday: Church, M. came again and loved it as always. We gave K's aunt a blessing after church, she has cancer. She cried a lot, we all felt the spirit. Maybe she'll get baptized! Seeds have been planted. Then we visited an old member, Sister Car. She's too old to go to church. We brought her the sacrament. She is really funny! She appreciated our visit a lot. Then, as usual, we went to K's for dinner.

Monday: Legality! Some of the Elders from the zone came in for legality. I had to go with them to buy fiscal stamps, because they forgot them. Then one of them found out he forgot his birth certificate. It was funny. We all made jokes like he forgot everything. Elder Hansen said "hey, were you ever even baptized? Did you remember to do that?" We all busted up laughing in the middle of the prefecture. It was great! Only bad part of the day: My companion bought canned tomatoes during grocery shopping. Horrible! My dad understands I think haha.

I love you all!
Elder MacArthur

Elder Barben's selfie of us and the office elders with Elder Richmond, Soeurs Wilsher and Filbrandt!

Korean buffet with Elders Szuch, Sauro, and Kelsey!!

The zone! Corsica district on skype :)