Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Rentrons Joyeux (5-21-2017)

Hey all,

I am going home! It was an amazing week.

The Paris temple consecration was incredible. A house of the lord in France, at long last. I know that it is His House. The power of the temple is real. I hope to go there one day to "get temple together" as President Brown says, with my future wife.

Vive la France, God bless America.

This work is all true, I know it is. And that makes all the difference. I am converted forever. A marvelous work and a wonder has happened inside me.

Je sais que Jesus Christ vit. Il m'a racheté de la mort. Je l'aime, parce qu'il m'aime aussi.

I love you all. I will see you soon.
Elder Ben MacArthur

Monday, May 22, 2017


Hey everyone, this week was awesome!

The B family continues to do well, we saw them twice last week and they came to church. And Oc, the member who was baptized in Côte d'Ivoire, stayed for all three hours and a Ward meal afterwards! She's going to participate in the cultural celebration on the 20th.

JY, in the same family, came and played soccer with us on Saturday and loved it! We read in the Book of Mormon with him afterwards, and gave him some white shirts and ties to wear at church, upon his request. I'm glad to see my old shirts stay useful.

A cool miracle: T, who I mentioned last week, mini-dropped us after that wonderful first RDV we had. He got mixed up with some evangelists who convinced him the Book of Mormon was made up. So he said he preferred to get the truth from the Bible. But our wonderful members stepped in and saved the day! Fr. D called him, and invited him over to dinner on Saturday before church on Sunday. The dinner went well, and the next morning, another member, Fr. B, invites T to church on the spot. T said he would be there!

And he came! Our members didn't just give up and do nothing, they went to work! T stayed for all three hours, and loved it, even stayed for the Ward meal as well! We are going to invite him to accept a baptismal date this next week, and he will accept it, no question.

Despite Satan's best plans, T is still on the right track.

Without our members, it would have been impossible.

These past few weeks have been hard for me. Elder Eberhard was kind enough to give me a blessing to help me not worry about going home, etc. I was filled with a sense of reassurance, that as I prayed always, kept reading the scriptures, and sought diligently, that all things would work together for my good. Things will work out. I know that.

I have loved my mission so much. I am so grateful to be here for the consecration of the temple! What a way to end my mission.

I love you all!
Elder MacArthur

Dinner with TA and family

Last District Meeting

The last Mille Feuille

Lunch with W

Friday, May 12, 2017


Hey everyone!

This week has been a week of miracles. I only really have time to share four of them.

Miracle 1:  On our way to miracle 2, Elder Eberhard contacts a young woman. Who is she you may ask? A less active from Bergerac, who now lives here. She is now going to come to English class.

Miracle 2:  We got a referral from a bishop in the Ivory Coast (Fr. Cal) to teach his family, the Bo family. Here is the text: "merci de mettre tout en oeuvre pour leur conversion." Meaning, please get things started for their conversion. We go over, and they already want to be baptized. Already! They know the church very well, Fr. Cal is the brother of the family's mother, Ro. She is incredibly prepared. And her daughter who lived with Fr. Cal for a few years? Got baptized there. She's a member too! She hasn't gone to church since she's been back. And they all want to go. And they came on Sunday. They came and they loved it. The young girl who is a member, O, she is going to participate in the cultural celebration at the Paris temple dedication on the 20th! BOOM already integrated. All the YW love her. And Ro, at RS, told everyone she would get baptized. Ro's brother who came, J-Y, also accepted a baptismal date for June 24th. Incredible miracle. We've taught them
twice already, and a third time at church.

Miracle 3:  A wonderful member named Alexis Defranchi (go watch his I'm a Mormon video, it's great) introduced us to a friend of a friend. The referrals' name is T, and he might be more prepared than the Bo family. He has been seeking God for a year, but hasn't joined any church yet. First question he asks: "how do I know that the man who baptizes me has the authority of God to do so?" Wow. INCREDIBLE. He wants to be baptized. He even wanted to do a pre-baptism on the spot, to prepare himself. It was amazing to see his desire. T will be baptized soon, no doubt about it.

Miracle 4:  A man Elder Ramsey and I started seeing again, S. H., was recently reactivated. This man had many problems, not 6 months ago. Now, he has a recommend for the Paris Temple Consecration. What a miracle! He has completely turned his life around, turned it over to the Savior, and look at what happens when we do that. Amazing.

I love you all! I love being a missionary! It's a good thing that I can be a missionary forever, wherever I am. If we have a desire we are always called to the work, no matter our assignment to labor.

Love, Elder MacArthur

Dinner and Family Search with the J's. We got to listen to French Disney music on the way back. It was fantastic.

We are actually at a gym right here. We are going back next P-day.

Elder Smith. What a man. I love him too. Go England.

Family history! Finding names like crazy.

Sleepy :)

My old comp, Elliot Burri. What a stud. I just think this picture is so cute. I love this man with all my heart. I would take a bullet for him. Random picture but why not haha.

We found an ancestor ready for the temple with the G's in 1 minute, 4 seconds.

Dinner and Family Search with the J's. We got to listen to French Disney music on the way back. It was fantastic.

Tuesday, May 2, 2017

May 1st, 2017

Hey everyone! This was a great week.

Monday: Plane

Tuesday: Exchange with assistants in Ecully! I was with Elders Bouaka and Underwood. It was super fun, I got to visit the Obs, Zs, Bs, and I saw Bas and Sr. Rop. It was a real treat to see all of them again before I go home. I love those elders so much. My first échange as a district leader was with Elder Underwood, way back when.

Wednesday: We helped the Mouts pour concrete for their pool. We did this the whole day almost! It was really fun, we mixed concrete and wheel barrowed it to the backyard.

The rest of the week was a blur, we got 4 amis (Ant, Cyn, Ru, and Wen) at church. We haven't seen An in a long time. Hopefully we see her this week.

Sorry I kinda have la flemme for writing. But I guess I'll see you all soon so it's ok right?

I love you all!
Elder MacArthur

In Lyon on exchange visiting Bas

Canned tomatoes, canned ravioli, and canned peas. Eating like kings. We need to buy food.

On exchange in Lyon with Elders Eberhard, Underwood, Bouaka, and ??

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

April 24th, 2017!

Hello everyone! This has been a good week.

Monday:  Pday In Lyon! We got to go to vieux Lyon, and I got to spend it with my last 3 comps, Elder Ramsey and Fiala and Eberhard. It was a great privilege. We went to family home evening...with brother M, his daughters, and Fab!!! It was the best night ever. I am so lucky to have been able to see them.

Tuesday:  MLC, very spiritual experience as always. We got to watch the video "Strength beyond my own" in French with video clips of the Paris temple! We are all very excited for the consecration here in our mission. President Brown challenged us all to polish ourselves for the next 5 weeks to be ready for the consecration. I will do my best to do this.

The rest of the week wasn't terribly interesting, I did have a cool exchange though! I was with Elder Encarnacion, who is normally in Angoulême. We did a lot of walking, so we got to talk a lot. He actually lost a close friend not too long ago, so it was really good for him to talk and have time to get his feelings out. We met an Australian member, and gave him a blessing in the forest. It was cool. We had nowhere else to go, but it was super great, he was very grateful for our visit. And Elder Encarnacion, he is a really cool guy! His parents had a band in the 90s called Moonpools and Caterpillars. Check them out if you want, I have never listened to them but I will when I get home! They are all very musical, and Elder Encarnacion was offered jobs writing music for tv commercials before his mission once he became discovered. Don't be surprised to see him on MTV someday. Actually, MTV isn't really music television isn't it? So never mind, I hope you never see him on MTV. Maybe the Voice. Or American Idol. I'm not sure if that still exists either.

On Saturday, we helped Eysines and Agen elders with their baptisms, both in our chapel. They were the two baptisms in our mission this week. So we went to all the baptisms mission-wide. 2 for 2. Pretty good. They weren't ours though haha.

On Sunday, Cy, Ru, and Mi came to church! They are all pretty new investigators. Mi, we haven't even taught her the restoration yet but she's come to church twice. We have high hopes for her!!

Something that I learned this week: Go to 3 Nephi 19. Look at the way the Lord prays. Do we pray like that? Verse 9: "And they did pray for that which they most desired; and they desired that the Holy Ghost should be given unto them." Their prayers were sincere, because they had real desire, or real intent; another way to say it is "full purpose of heart." When the Lord prays, he thanked His Father first thing, always. He always prayed for others, his prayers no matter what were always for others. Even if we need to pray for strength, pray for help, pray for comfort, pray for faith, etc. we must have a desire to receive these heavenly gifts for the benefit of others. And the Nephites got this. Verse 24 describes the power behind their prayers: "...and they did not multiply many words, for it was given unto them what they should pray, and they were filled with desire." Are our prayers guided by the spirit? Have you ever noticed that a day full of hard work, desire, and positive attitude is so much easier to write about in a journal, or to tell Heavenly Father about than a day with no motivation and no desire? If we really do all that we do with desire, we won't need to wonder what to say or pray. It will be given to us, by the Spirit. If our desires are righteous, and we have the faith to act on them, we can never go wrong.

I love you all a lot. Have a good one :)
Elder MacArthur

Us (Ben & Elder Encarnacion) and Brother Chi

Elder Ramsey!

Cleaning the font for 2 baptisms on Saturday...none of which were ours haha. That kinda hurts in a prideful way, but it was great to see a baptism in Bordeaux!


FHE with V.M....true love

Monday, April 17, 2017

April 17, 2017!

Hello everyone! This week was an amazing week!! I have so much to share.

Tuesday:  We taught A the plan of salvation and she loved it! She thought that after death, there was only heaven and hell, but when we taught her the truth, she exclaimed, "that's great because I always doubted that idea!" She's loving the Book of Mormon more and more. Bon, that is the only other thing I'm gonna share for Tuesday, because Tuesday night, the happiest moment of my life came.

I received a call from my old companion, Elder Ramsey, who's still in Lyon. He asked me straight off if I was sitting down. I sat down, and he preceded to tell me about a miracle, a wonder of wonders, miracle of miracles. When I was with Elder Burri, we started talking to a less-active member, named Brother M. He joined the church in his late teens, and served a mission in the Swiss Genève Mission. He returned home with Honor, and not too long afterwards was married, and was made a bishop. All was well. But a few years ago, things took a turn for the worse. He soon found himself divorced and inactive, and unable to use the priesthood. For a few years he lived in darkness.

I met him at a stake conference about 6 months ago. I introduced myself and asked him if he needed help. He was a little hesitant but said he would be moving soon, and he could use some help. For a few weeks, it didn't happen, but when Elder Ramsey came to Lyon, he finally fixed a RDV with us. And we started to spend lots of time with him, and we helped him most days of the week. At first we didn't try sharing spiritual thoughts, we didn't want to seem like "we are here just to reactivate you" but after a few times, he started asking us to pray over the food, and asked us to share a scripture with him. He started reading the scriptures a few times a week. Soon, he was reading each day. And he started coming to church. Soon, he was coming every week. He started working with his bishop to regain full fellowship in the church.

Elder Ramsey once challenged him to do something. His parents will come to France and pick him up in July, and Elder Ramsey challenged Brother M to come with him and his family to the temple in July. Excited, Brother M jumped up and said "let's do it!".

I digress, back to the story. Elder Ramsey calls me on Tuesday night and tells me that Brother M just had his priesthood blessings restored. He will be a home teacher. He will have a calling. He will be able to baptize his two 9 year old daughters who now have baptismal dates for May 6th. And he will be going to the temple with Elder Ramsey in July. When I heard this, I cried like a little child. I broke down and felt the most amazing joy, sweet above all that is sweet. I sat in silence on the phone with Elder Ramsey. We had no idea what to say. My journal says: "We thanked each other from the bottom of our souls, for loving Brother M enough to see a great change of heart. I am so grateful for Elder Ramsey's idea to buy a frame for a picture of the Swiss temple and give it to brother M. What a wonderful guy. What a man. Like President Brown counsels us, Elder Ramsey was more concerned about Brother M than our calendar. It didn't matter what the cost was, he was focused on people, on his purpose. Together, through us, the Lord loved Brother M back to activity and loved his daughters into the waters of baptism.

Tuesday night was the best moment of my life. I know that repentance is real. Forgiveness is possible through the Atonement of Jesus Christ. What a wonderful gift. It is never too late to repent, it is never too late to be forgiven. My new favorite scripture expressed my feelings better than I can:

"Remember the worth of souls is great in the sight of God;...
And how great is his joy in the soul that repenteth!
Wherefore, you are called to cry repentance unto this people.
And if it so be that you should labor all your days in crying repentance unto this people, and bring, save it be one soul unto me, how great shall be your joy with him in the kingdom of my Father!
And now, if your joy will be great with one soul that you have brought unto me into the kingdom of my Father, how great will be your joy if you should bring many souls unto me!" ~DC 18

As I sobbed these words over the phone to Elder Ramsey, I heard him cry as well. We felt the spirit confirm to our hearts that this is true. It is all true. And that makes all the difference.

Well, after that, I don't know what else to share. Everything else from the week is almost insignificant by comparison. We did service a few times for members. Elder Eberhard is great! A prodigious pianist and French horn player. Really talented, good missionary, in his 14th transfer. Speaks great French. I love being with him!

I love you all. I know that God lives, that He changes hearts, He changes lives, He changes eternities. Because He loves us. I know that Christ lives, that He resurrected the third day. Let's love Him. Let's adore Him. Let's follow Him and walk with Him, always.
Elder MacArthur

On an exchange with Elder Hansen

View of Bordeaux from HLM

Forest walk on exchange

Working hard in the Lord's vineyard...maybe not the Lord's vineyard actually

Monday, April 10, 2017

April 10, 2017

Hello everyone!! This week was great!

Tuesday: It was a slow day to start but we passed a member in the evening to wish her a happy birthday, and we got to teach her non-member father. It was good that we passed by the whole family was parked and it was a lot of fun.

Wednesday: I went on exchange with Elder Seguine! It was lots of fun. We taught a potential amie named Cy! She is awesome. She understood The restoration very well. When we invited her to be baptized, she said that she would need to know if the Book of Mormon was true. Once we reassured her that she could know for herself, she accepted a date! It was really cool! Cy moved from Nigeria a few years ago, and she doesn't really have a church to go to. So she told us that she would be coming to ours from now on!

Thursday: We help the sisters move their investigator's couch to her apartment. She bought it on French Craigslist, and we carried it up the stairs, she was very appreciative. We ran back home, change, and took a bus to eat dinner with the Lan family. It was lots of fun! Their kids are the cutest things ever. We shared the Easter video with them, and they loved it. We invited them to share it on social media with their friends.

Friday: We got transfer calls. Elder Fiala is going to Ecully to serve with Elder Ramsey, my old companion! I was super excited for him. The missionary work there is on fire!! I will be serving with Elder Eberhard, and we are going to lead our zone to many baptisms this transfer. He is a man of great faith and I am excited to finish my mission at his side. Fr. Vis invited us to lunch after calls, and we had a nice steak. It was awesome. Unfortunately, lots of my photos from this week are on Elder Fialas iPad, so I might not have them for a few weeks. After lunch, we went and taught An with Fr. Vis. He served in the Provo mission, and he speaks English very very well, and is a very good teacher. It was an excellent lesson. The experiences his mother had as a single mother spoke to An, and she teared up. She could really feel the power behind our words. After that lesson, we went to give Sr. Baq a blessing. Then we had dinner with the Ven family. We had Pizza Hut (very good in France. Meh. Idk, I've been away from American pizza so long, at this point I have no idea) so on s'est régalé.

Saturday: We spent a whole day at a baptism in Lormont, on the other side of the river next to Bordeaux. We got the Lormont Chapel keys, met the Poitiers sisters at the gare, brought them to the Chapel, and helped them set up for their baptism. They don't have a font in their building, so sometimes they come to Bordeaux. Their ami Yac got baptized by their recent convert J. Yac forgot white underwear, so we went to Carrefour on an undies run. It was funny....
Us: what size are you?
Yac: I dont know...
Yac: yeah!
Us: *searching* there is no small, what about medium?
Yac: yeah!
Us:*holds up underwear, sizing him up* yeah looks about right.

So we walked out, Elder Fiala and I walking with this third man, and he's holding whitey tighties. It was a very queer experience, and I use that word in its real sense. Very very strange. We get back, the baptism goes forward, we bomb a musical number, by the end we are laughing because it's so terrible, everyone else laughed too so ca va. The baptiser had to try about 29 times. Yac got a bloody nose halfway through too. It was a nightmare. But he was finally baptized!

Sunday: We had a triumphal day at church! We had seven amis at Sacrament!! It was incredible. Ric, Cy, Ru (her friend), Wen, An (her friend), Ant and Mic. Nothing less than a miracle. We also had 7 less actives there. There was so many people at church, it was incredible. A good way to send Elder Fiala off. Then we took pictures, said goodbye, and had crepes with the Mo family. A wonderful day. And en plus: R (a young guy, not Rud's dad) came to church, and accepted a baptismal date for May 20th. He is so ready! He told us "God has sent you to me!" What a man. That is what it's all about. Him, Cy, An, and Ra have dates. When I got here, we weren't even teaching them. Miracles are real!

I love you all! May the Lord's choicest blessings be upon you all.
Elder MacArthur

Chinese buffet on transfer day

Fr Gen is hilarious

M with ice cream, pizza, and the tv. What an American!

Kids' chart for who showers first.  LOL

I call it "six weeks to sumo"

The Talence crew

Breaking out the glasses

Thursday, April 6, 2017


Hello everyone! This week was awesome. Very very inspirational.

Monday: Fun p-day, dropped in on some members, and found out about a family friend of Sr. De that she's inviting to church! They already have a Book of Mormon. We will follow up on that for sure. After that, we passed by Rud's house and he was there! We got to read with him and see his dad. We really felt guided by the spirit on Monday, we saw cool miracles.

Tuesday: Zone conference planning, and we had dinner with the Vil family. Sr. Vil's husband Ant is not a member, and we asked him if he even wanted his own testimony, if he wanted to be baptized. He didn't really have an answer for us. We hope that Sr. Vil will motivate him a little more.

Wednesday: We saw some people, and went to Toulouse for a multi- zone conference with the Toulouse and Montpellier zones! We had a fun sleepover, it was fun to see people I hadn't seen in ages.

Thursday: We had interviews with President Brown. I love interviews with him, I always feel inspired and guided. He told me that he knew I was exactly where I needed to be, with exactly who I needed to be with, doing exactly what we should be doing, so that was comforting.

Our zone has done really well this transfer, and President was proud of us all. After that, we had zone conference! We sung a special musical number, the one Elder Ramsey and I wrote in Lyon. It went pretty well. President talked a lot about hope, and how the sacrament brings us hope. He said "it is the sacrament that gives me hope to live each day."  We have the hope of a rebirth every week thanks to the sacrament. What a great blessing. Seeing as how it was the last time I will see him for a few months, I said goodbye to elder Wade. It'll be sad to see him go. We came in together, pretty weird. I'll see him soon enough after my mission.

Friday: We finished transfer recommendations, then had dinner with the Gen family. They are great! Fr. Gen was baptized in 1965, making him a real pioneer of the church in France. They introduced us to their neighbors, and we talked for a long time. They had met the sisters before, and they had the Book of Mormon. When we left, the kids asked "mom, when are they coming back?" So we'll be back. Don't worry kids. If you get the kids to like you, you've won.

Saturday: Stuff fell through, but we had General Conference which made up for it. Excellent talks.

Sunday: More conference. Bishop Causse spoke, and his dad was in our chapel to see it! His dad is pretty cool. Bishop Causse's dad knew one of my BYU French teachers from when he was a missionary in Paris! At conference, we had a potential named Wen come, we met her in the street a while ago, and she came! She liked it. We had a lesson right after with Est Def, who speaks Chinese, so it worked really well. She wants to see us again!

It was a miracle full week. I received so many answers to my questions at General Conference. I especially loved Elder Sabin's talk. He came to our mission a few months ago, it was great to see him on the screen. Don't fear, just live right. If you can't walk, run! What inspiration.

I know that the Lord's church, the church of the Firstborn, is on the earth today. President Monson is the prophet of God the earth. What joy this brings me. I love you all!
Elder MacArthur

Sister Brown, Elder Wade & Ben

Water from Arcachon that looks kinda like wine....oops haha

Zone conference in Toulouse!

Wednesday, March 29, 2017


Hello everyone! Today is my 22 month mark. Crazy! This week was full of miracles.

Tuesday - We had an exchange with the assistants, I was with Elder Menzel and Elder Wade (for the last time). It'll be sad to see him go in 2 weeks! Our exchange was great. Elder Menzel and I passed some amis and talked to a few people in the street while elder Wade helped President with interviews, then we picked him up after interviews and ate lunch at sister B's house! It was great, she's the sweetest member in the Ecully ward. After that, as we walked back to the car, we saw two guys playing basketball, and we decided to go play with them. We rolled up and they said "you want to play us? En costard?! (In dress clothes) so we played, and we wrecked them. Well, I'm not that good, and neither is Elder Menzel. But we won handily. Afterwards, we told them who we were and what we do, and they were down to see us again, to play and to hear what we have to say. It was super cool. We took the car to an outer ville to visit an older sister who never gets missionary visits, Soeur Bar. She was very appreciative, and we gave her the first blessing she's had in a long time. It was a great exchange! Like old times.

We had an interesting debate going on Tuesday night: if a rock is in a pool, completely submerged in water, is it wet? We said yes, they said no (Elder Underwood agreed with us too). Our argument was based on common sense, and by definition, something is wet if it is covered by moisture. They said it isn't wet until it comes out of the water, because down in the water, where everything is wet, nothing is really wet because there is no contrast of dry/wet. It was pretty amusing to duke it out and hear their side.

Wednesday - We took an early flight back to Bordeaux and saw some people. We helped sister Baq with her garden and shared a message with the family. H, her husband, is not a member. He is starting to like us!

Thursday - We had district meeting, which was very uplifting. For lunch, we had a cereal party!

Friday - We weekly planned, and tried to drop in on members, to no avail. We did find a lady named A who seems interested. We ate dinner with the family Cat! They have 3 boys, Z, B, and M. Z plays the trumpet, so that sparcd me. Dinner was really great. They are a good missionary family.

Saturday - We passed by and had a lesson with A. She accepted a baptismal date! She met the elders in Italy, so she already knew our message a little. The lesson went very well, and she committed to skipping her Pentecostal church and coming to ours in Sunday!

Sunday - A came to church with her three children! It was great, Sr. Ler brought her to church. We sat with her, and she liked it! We are seeing her next Tuesday. After church, we went to La Teste and taught an old ami, W, and his wife, J. They are so ready!! But they are scared of knowing the truth, because that would mean they would have to repent and change. It was a sad feeling to see how ready they were, and how un-ready they felt. We tried our best to encourage them and engage them to pray to know the truth about the Book of Mormon, but they said they wouldn't for now. They will move back to Singapore soon, and they promised to go to church there, where it is in English. They speak zero French, so I understand where they're coming from. We came back (and Frere Gen drove us there and back, what a great guy) and had dinner with the Mous. We had crepes!

Today we went to Arcachon and saw the sand dunes! It was super fun.

Super great week. Have faith in miracles.

Other good news- Fab from my old sector of Ecully got baptized! Elder Ramsey baptized him, and President Brown confirmed him a member, and Brother Z gave him the Aaronic priesthood. That made my day hearing that. I will be forever grateful that one day, we decided to go to another ward's baptism and sit next to a stranger named Fab B. He was ready from day one. When we listen to the spirit, miracles happen. When we find through members, we find prepared people. So, members, please invite your friends into the gospel life you live! You never know what will happen.

I love you all!
Elder MacArthur

District meeting in Bordeaux

Ben buried in the sand dunes

Sand dunes



Monday, March 20, 2017


Hey everyone! This was a week full of miracles.

Monday - Went and tried to see some castles, they were all private residences though. Why put a private house on a public map if it's not open to the public? But it was fun. We took some cool pics. Elder Fiala fell on his butt and got wet. We laughed. Good times!

Tuesday - Slow day. Helped a less active understand that reincarnation is a false doctrine, that was fun.

Wednesday - Exchange with Elder Smith! I'm still in his zone haha. We went to meet a less-active from his sector in Angoulême that moved to Bordeaux. She's got nonmember kids and a husband! We taught her friend Flo the retab, and fixed à RDV. They both live in Eysines sector, so we passed a part-member family and an ami family to Eysines. But they needed it so it's chill. Our exchange was great. I learned some new British terms, like "spot me a tenner!" Fun times.

Thursday - We pass a less active. He's not there, it turns out. But his nonmember uncle (Lou) is! RDV fixed Friday We went to La Teste, and the Lac family gave us kebabs and we went to Arcachon together. They showed us fancy villas that cost 8 million euros. It was a really nice part of town. They are coming back to church, and we got some great bonding time in. We showed them a temple video and they loved it. We came back and had a drop in with a member, the T Cs. They live in an old Protestant church! It's a cool house. Their less active sister happened to be there, so we showed the aforementioned temple video. Good stuff!

Saturday - We saw Lou. He accepted a baptismal date. But his parole schedule doesn't allow him to get to church on time on Sunday....we will need a miracle. So please pray for him! We went to pass Rud. He wasn't there. We needed a miracle. What did we do? We had dinner at HFC. We came back, having faith that he would be there. Who was there? Rud. We had a great lesson! He understands our message but he just hasn't made it a priority yet. That will come.

Sunday - Good church, had a Ward meal afterwards. I talked with a few youth, and got them talking about their friends. They have a few friends who came to baptisms and such but never were taught. So we will follow up next week on them. Very effective.

I love you all! Just today, we had a cool miracle. We made contact with a less active named C. Her last name is from New Caledonia, and I can't write it. Her husband, R, is not a member. We invited him to be baptized in order to be married in the temple and he accepted! Crazy miracle: He knows an Elder Aaron Green, who is from my home ward in Oregon. So that sparc'd him up! Such a small world. They loved that elder, we talked a while about him. It's not a coincidence Elder Fiala and I are here. We are here to baptize R. With his rugby schedule and them living far away, it will be hard, but it will happen.

Elder MacArthur

Elder Fiala's Waterloo

La confluence

The Lac family in Arcachon

2 pairs left

R & C with Ben

Monday, March 13, 2017


Hey everyone, this week was a great week!

Monday - We had lunch with the sisters before catching our plane to Lyon for MLC.

Tuesday - MLC, it was very inspiring. We were motivated by President Brown and the zone leaders were rebuked for not baptizing. It was rough, but it was needed. After MLC, we took a plane home, that was very delayed due to strikes in Bordeaux.

Wednesday - Things fell through, so we went to La Teste (by the coast) to pass a less-active family, les Lac. The mother spoke to us, and said she'd come to church. In the evening, we had FHE, and lots of people showed up!

Thursday - We had district meeting, which was focused on increasing our faith. It was very inspiring and I really appreciated the things that Elder Hansen had to say. After district meeting, we had a pasta that made us sick, and it was really sunny and hot and I did not feel good at all. But I fought through it and despite the opposition we had a great day. That day was the hardest I've ever had on my mission, I just felt not good enough and discouraged, but it passed. Even after an inspiring  event, we come down to earth so to speak, and it takes all you have to get back up. In the evening, we taught English class and had 2 amis there! It was a great success.

Friday - Weekly planning, RCM, we passed the Mou family in the morning. We asked who we could see in the neighborhood and they just told us that nobody was Christian, or interested. Kinda hard to respond with something after that but we tried a little, and sure enough, they were right. We tried to see Rud but he wasn't home. We called the Cat family to wish M a happy 6th birthday, and they were all super sparcd that we called.

Saturday - Samedi sportif, we played basketball with two Chinese amis, Ning and Ya xin, not sure on the spelling. They were pretty good! We got to give them a tour of the chapel, and they seem to appreciate it. We show them the baptismal font and they were curious, they do not know anything about Jesus Christ. After a few round it was falling through, we went out and passed some people on our ward list. We stumbled across a Tahitian association for Tahitians living in France, they were dancing and singing and it was pretty cool. We contacted a woman named Wen who was crying. We asked her why she was crying, and she told us that she had failed her driving permit test and that she would not be able to work without a license to drive. Getting a drivers license and France is pretty hard, and we felt bad that we couldn't do much for her. But we testified of God's love, and of faith in His Son. She gave us her number so we hope to see her this next week! We ended the day with dinner at the Vem's. They are really cool, they gave us Ben and Jerry's ice cream. Yum.

Sunday - We had church, and the Lac family came! Yay! We went over to T, A, and W's house after church to follow up on their missionary work. They are three RMs who are super good friends, I knew T when I was in Brive, I ate Christmas dinner with him a year and a half ago! It's cool to be in his ward.

If you get a chance, listen to "Healing Water" on the 2017 youth album. I really like this song. If you speak French, listen to it on the French cd when it comes out, en plus I know the girl who sings it! It's a great song that talks about the purification of the spirit when we repent. I love the idea of being as clean as earth right after rain. It's a wonderful song that teaches us correct principles. I know that we can change, thanks to Jesus Christ's atonement. We can become someone better. We can be free of sin, we can bind Satan, we can be clean.

I love you all! Have a great week.
Love, Elder MacArthur



Mission Leadership Conference in Lyon

Catching the plane from Bordeaux to Lyon

Monday, March 6, 2017


Hey everyone! This has been a great week.

The Talence Ward is pretty big by French standards, we have three wards in Bordeaux which is also excellent. There are many many less actives on the list, and many part member families. We are looking forward to working with these families as much as possible, because this is how we will get people prepared for the temple, en famille. Elder Fiala, my new companion, is great! He's from Virginia, his family recently moved to Iowa. He has 9 brothers and sisters, a big family and they are all crazy beautiful people. If you marry a Fiala, your kids will be beautiful, remember that. He's pretty tall too, he plays volleyball and back in the day he could dunk. He's in his sixth transfer, and his second leading the Bordeaux zone. He's a fireball missionary who reminds me what I should be doing and keeps me focused on my purpose. I'm very glad to be with him, I will learn lots these last few months.

We have a few part member family amis, and an engagé named Ru. We actually found an ami family, it's a cool story with a funny ending. We were looking for a less active, and we knocked a door, and it wasn't the less active, it was a Romanian family of 8. They let us in and accepted to hear our message of the restoration. They were really interested, and they wanted a Book of Mormon in Romanian. Super cute family, very very nice. As we extended a baptismal invitation that they declined (for now), the wife started to feed her baby..."au naturel." Elder Fiala and I were very surprised and had a good laugh about it later.

We have had lots of funny stuff to laugh about this week, I have some videos but all too long to send by email.

Any who, we come back two days later and give them Romanian Books of Mormon, and the wife Mir tells us that she wants to introduce us to her Romanian friends. Referrals, sweet!! So we go over with a member named Fr. Bou, and what happened next was the wildest thing I've ever experienced on my mission. We go into this house, everyone is speaking que Romanian, and they open the door to the living room. It was pretty dark, a fire was going, and maybe 30 people were packed into a tiny room, all praying in a non-conventional and certainly non-Christian way. It was very very weird, and it immediately became clear to us that it wasn't a Christian friendly place, or certainly not a Mormon missionary friendly place. So we got out of there. I looked behind me at Elder Fiala who was dumbstruck, and Fr. Bou was nodding his head, he was groovin'. The guy totally wanted to stay and teach them, it was really funny that he thought nothing of the situation. Haha it was so unexpected. We went back to teach the Maz family, and it became clear that they didn't want to change religions. So, that's that.

Moral of the story? There are dozens, but one I found important:  Even the miracle amis we have as missionaries usually aren't as good as member referrals. We thought this family were the next 6 baptisms in the Ward! We were excited about them. But even one of the coolest miracles from solely our own efforts turned into a weird story that will stay in the areabook. Member amis are way better. It's the best way to do missionary work if you want prepared people. So I am excited to work with the members here and teach their friends. We finally got a Ward list on PDF, we are working on getting it on Excel so we can update it as we visit and pass people. We are getting a list of the part member families so that we can coordinate visits and work together, equally yoked, to complete these soon-to-be eternal families.

In my personal study this week, I have been reading in the war chapters in the Book of Mormon. When I came to Bordeaux, President Brown gave me a charge to spark up Elder Fiala and get him going full-speed in no time. I want to seek the Lord's direction on how to do that, and I have learned a lot through the examples of men like Moroni, who got involved and through his personal righteousness was able to influence thousands of Nephites for the better. He got the Nephite army going full-speed very very quickly. He got people involved, he sought the prophet's direction, and he was strong yet incredibly merciful. I think that's what a true man does. A true man isn't cruel, isn't bloodthirsty, isn't vulgar, isn't boastful or malicious. A true man is a man of Christ. He has compassion, is loving, is fair, is just, he is merciful, he is loyal, and he is obedient to God. How often do we try to become men and women of Christ through other means? In John, Christ taught us that His love will be with us as we obey him and walk in his ways. He gave us commandments that our joy might be full, and he promised us joy: happy are ye if he do them." And loving the Savior makes us happy not just because we have love in our heart, but because we are blessed with the spiritual gift of joy as we willingly obey the Lord. These are just my thoughts but I hope that you find something with which you concur.

I love being a missionary in France. It is a wonderful country that has grown dear to me. Soon, there will be a house of God here. The power of God will be made manifest as sacred ordinances are done to seal families forever for the first time in French history. I feel as Ammon, who said that never before in the history of the world had men had reason to rejoice as he did (Alma 26). I know that what I am doing matters. It is all real. Jesus is the Christ, and that makes all the difference. It is all real. What a message! This is why we have missionaries, to share this message of joy. So please, share the gospel with your friends. Ask God what He needs you to do to bless their lives, and do it. Don't shy away. Don't coward. Be not afraid, only believe, doubt not and fear not. People need this message and those of us with the gospel knowledge are under obligation by promises we made before God, angels, and witnesses to testify. We shall testify, because we have been with Christ from the beginning.

I love you all, and I love my savior. Have a wonderful week full of miracles. Que le Dieu Tout-Puissant vous garde, mes chers amis.
Elder MacArthur

Elder Fiala and the Talence Ward DMP (Ward Mission Leader) on a service project

A girl at KFC gave us her number...she wasn't interested in the gospel

Place de la Victoire

Riding the turtle