Monday, October 28, 2013

Tu n'as pas tout tes frites dans le même sachet!

Photos of Lorraine's companion and the Christmas chain:

So here I was...just going about doing missionary work in Liege...kind of thinking that it was just another semi-ghetto Belgian industrial ville...but I was wrong.  This week I learned...wait for it...that CHARLEMAGNE was born here!  That immediately makes Liege the coolest place ever.  Actually Belgium has a very interesting history...a big thanks to mom for sending me some history:)

Well that's it for the week!  Thanks for reading!

Just kidding, here's what happened this week:

Monday we had the (older) single adults' fhe.  Sr De Walle, the lady that has been inactive for 32 years, came!  She is awesome.  She brought her 5-year- old great-grand-daughter Clara with her. She is the sassiest little thing.  We are totally obsessed with her.  She just says the cutest little things in French, draws crazy pictures, has imaginary pets (leopards and dinosaurs), and drags us all around the chapel.  She came with Sr De Walle to church and sat between us during sacrament fun!

Okay--GIGH.  Gigh is the Rwandese ami that we've been teaching.  Well we went over and taught her the Plan of Salvation on Tuesday and it was another great lesson.  She was so excited about the fact that she chose to come to earth.  She keep saying how that changes everything!  She said "I just know that I signed up for all these challenges, I'm just the adventurous sort...I'm sure I said 'Yeah, bring it on!'"  haha, she's hilarious. She also said she wants to take us to London next month for some sort of religious 'Hill Sing,'  we said we'd have to think about it haha.  OKAY, and we officially found out that she was in BELGIUM'S NEXT TOP MODEL.  She had absolutely no experience, just decided to try it out (the adventurous sort).  She told us about how no one would look at her at first, but now everyone is crazy about her and she is in the Finals!  The big show was this last Saturday.  Every week in district meeting each equipe asks the district to pray for something specific about one of their amis...usually something like getting baptised, feeling the spirit etc.  We asked them to pray that Gigh would win the show.  Well on Sunday morning, we thought Gigh might not come to church because she was probably tired from the show.  But she walked in right before the sacrament with a gorgeous hair-do.  Turns out she came in SECOND PLACE.  Apparently she's famous--the show was on TV.  She showed us all these pictures of herself with models for Louis Vuitton etc.  Crazy.  She's also going to New York next month for a photo shoot...  But more importantly than all that is that she is really progressing and loves church!  

On Wednesday we went to Brussels!  President came to our district meeting to pump us up about our goal for every equipe to find, teach and baptize a family before Christmas.  There has been a lot of opposition since we set the goal.  Apparently there were like six missionaries in the hospital last week!  So he came to encourage us to keep trying.  That night we had a "movie night" with Christianne.  She is just this crazy Belge lady, who talks really loud and spits in your face etc...she's hilarious.  Anyway she was in the middle of one of her dramatic stories, describing how she was yelling at someone and calling them crazy, and said "Tu n'as pas tout tes frites dans le même sachet!"  Which, translated means, "You don't have all you fries in the same sack!"  I just lost it.  Sr Johns and I couldn't breath we were laughing so hard... seriously such a Belgian insult.  Y'all should have been there...  yes I say "y'all" now, what happens when you live with a Texan.

Speaking of which...transfer email just came in and...SR JOHNS AND I ARE STAYING TOGETHER!!! WAHOOOOOOOO  Seriously so happy about that.  Oh and they opened a second equipe of Soeurs in Rennes!  They definitely need that over there.  There's so much potential.  We will probably be getting another equipe of soeurs in Liege next transfer.

Other cool things that happened?  hmmm...we went on a referral goose chase in the Belgian countryside.  Seriously just had the most gorgeous walk through Remicourt... It was surreal.  I love my mission, it's beautiful.  Never want to'll literally will have to come get me to make me come home...oh wait that's what's happening.
Oh and on saturday night we went to pass-by Katy.  She wasn't there so we knocked on their neighbors door... And ended up teaching a JESUIT named Serge and his awesome wife Patricia.  

Also we talked to some english speaking women on the bus the other night.  One of them was Italian and said "Oh I have a friend who is Mormon.  He did the same thing you are!  In fact, he love Brazil so much he decided to stay for TWO YEARS!"  We just laughed and said, wow, he really must have been enjoying himself! :)

Then after that an older man started talking to us, to wish us luck in our mission and tell us he admired people who have faith.  Turns out he lives in our building!  That was the day I found about the whole Charlemagne thing, so I told him how I was so shocked about that.  He said that if I was interested in history, he has these 1-day bus tours through the Liege Province.  Then the other day we got a letter in our mailbox from him with all the bus routes and THE CUTEST letter ever.  It is nice to know that people admire us and that there are such nice people out there.  Belgians are just the nicest people in the world.

Oh and this week we went and saw Fifi, she the mother of Gilles who got baptized two weeks ago.  She's from the Congo and taught us how to make Beignets...delicious.

Okay...that's all I can think of.  Oh Sr Johns and I made an adorable paper chain counting down to Christmas!  Seriously can't wait for Christmas...

Okay goodbye dear friends! until next week:)

Monday, October 21, 2013

Daily Bread (Photos!!)

Yesterday we went and ate lunch with a family in Liege 1. They have a very interesting story.  The children are active, but the parents are not.  The mother was explaining why and it just came down to laziness.  She said she had been to a baptism recently where having a testimony was kind of like having those wind-up flashlights.  She said she simply hasn't been winding up her flashlight, or fanning the flame of her faith, and she doesn't really want to.  It's more comfortable to sleep-in etc.  Her and her husband just enjoy the house to themselvesSunday mornings while their children go to church.  It's a pretty interesting situation. They are a very rich family and have all the material comforts you could ever want, but I definitely felt there was something missing... I was so impressed with the son Pierre-Arnaud.  Three months ago he just decided that he wanted to serve a mission and then started to come back to church.  His parents are supportive, but also not really.  I'm just really impressed with him.  There are a couple Mormon messages that this situation reminded me of.  We as human beings need daily nourishment, and the same thing goes for our spirits.  We need to commune with God daily and nourish our relationship with Him.  Otherwise we starve spiritually and look for spiritual "food" elsewhere.  Here are the links:

This week was really good.  I was in some district-worthy rendez-vous this week.  The kind of lessons you just read about in Preach My Gospel or watch on The District.  It's cool that this is actually real life!

We did an exchange with the Sister Training Leaders and I got to go to Brussels with Sr Bracken.  We taught Maria and Filipe...Wow... it was one of the most beautiful experiences, I really feel so blessed to be a part of this work.  The wife Maria has known about the church for a few years, but only a few days before my exchange Filipe, her husband, decided to start listening.  We taught about the Restoration and the Book of Mormon.  Filipe was very attentive, but I thought maybe he wasn't getting it.  But then at the end I asked if he had any questions, and he said no.  But he did have something he wanted to say.  He said that it was really a great pleasure listening to us and the he just had the most special feeling during the whole lesson...we told them about the temple and how after they are baptized they can get married for eternity there.  They were thrilled! They love eachother so much.  That house was just overflowing with love and with the Spirit.  Filipe walked us out and he said again, during the whole lesson he just felt great.  And even when he didn't understand, he just had a burning feeling in his heart..  It is amazing how eager God is to talk to us.  All it takes is humility and an open heart...aka Filipe.  It was a beautiful moment that I will never forget.

Then on Thursday morning we stopped by Gigh's apartment (she is the girl from Rwanda who just showed up at the church last week).  She. is. awesome.  We found out that she is a model and that she met the King and Queen of Belgium last weekend!!  So cool.  But that's not why she is so awesome... We had an incredible lesson with her.  You could feel the spirit there so strongly, really so tangible.  She told us about how she had a near-death experience.  Back in Africa, apparently people poison children all the time.  She was poisoned once, and was taken to the hospital where she died.  The things she described were really incredible...the veil just felt really thin for awhile during that rendez-vous... Everyone-- God is really there and he loves us so much!  Don't ever give up on Him.  Anyways she literally skipped with joy back into her apartment when we left.  She came to institute the next night and immediately fit in.  She was getting some serious spiritual food... She is so legit! Can't wait to see her this week.

Then Saturday night we went to Vicky's house for her daughter's 7th birthday party.  It was seriously a blast.  We ate some delicious African food, except for foo-foo (not delicious).  There were at least 20 adorable little kids there.  So fun. I really felt like I was in the Congo for a few hours there. (See the attached pictures).

Well, that's how Liege is going right now.  Oh and also, yesterday we were talking to the young women and I found out one of them is named "Lorraine." That's right everyone there are two "Lorraine"s in Liege.  I need to get a picture with her for sure.

Also I love this video.  It's exactly what I tell all of our amis, "don't take our word for it, go directly to the source, the origin of all truth."

Love you all,
Sr Hilton

Monday, October 14, 2013


This past week was...incredible. Do you remember all the "Miracle Sundays" we had in Rennes? Well yesterday was "Miracle Sunday"---Liege style.  Sr. Johns had been feeling down this past week, so I was praying really hard that we could see a miracle soon...What happened was beyond anything I could have imagined...

First of all we'd been having trouble getting Valerie and her kids to church, so Saturday night when we were all at the Foire (Fair) together, I asked Eryn if we could come by in the morning and do her hair for church.  She was totally down!  Oh and the Foire with them was soooo fun!  I love actually being amis with our amis:)

So we went to their house in the morning and Sr. Johns did a gorgeous fishtail braid in Eryn's red hair (so pretty) and off we went to church.  Eryn and Valerie were so attentive to the testimonies, and I couldn't help but think that they were just for them!  Well I was wrong, they were also for a family who walked in late and sat in the back.  Also during Sr Stummond's testimony our phone went off really loudly...embarassing...but it was a miracle in the making.

After the meeting ended we said goodbye to Valerie and went and talked to the family in the back.  They aren't members, but are looking for a church. They were so touched by the testimonies of the entire Kapepula family. Susie, the mother said they'd be here next week... with twenty family members... what?  We weren't sure we'd heard her right.

Then as our conversation with her was finishing up, in walks Katy, the lady who had called us during the previous sacrament meeting!  She is an inactive member.  And who did she bring with her?  Her movie director fiancé and her son.  She said that she had felt the spirit telling her all night to go back to church, after seven years of inactivity.  And apparently her fiancé wants to join the cool.  We are seeing her Wednesday night, and then her fiancé, Alexandre on the weekend.

Then we had the baptism of Gilles Beya, the 10 year old son of a less-active Fifi.  The soeurs found and taught him, but the elders took him just for the baptism:(  So Fifi was kind of mad that we haven't been seeing her!  We set up a rendez-vous and hopefully will be able to bring her back to church.  Also, a less-active who the soeurs were working with last transfer, Vicky, is now active and even bore her testimony, it was beautiful:)  We are seeing her this week too.

The baptism was really great, and I played my violin for the intermede. Everyone really loved it, especially the Branch President. I'm so glad that I brought that with me.  I have see so many hearts softened...the power of music is real.

So, Sr. Johns and I were pretty blown away at this point... we were about to head home...but when we got to the bus stop we realized it wasn't coming for 20 minutes.  It was freezing so we decided to wait in the church.  As we headed back inside, we saw a young woman we didn't recognize going inside.  As we stopped her walking up the stairs, an English Plan of Salvation pamphlet fell out of her coat.  It was all really surreal as we sat down with her and she just poured out her soul to us.  She is from Rwanda, her parents were killed in the genocide in the 90's.  She has amazing belief in God.  She said, no one's ever told me this, but I know he is my dad.  Haha she said she basically stole the PoS pamphlet from these Ghanan men.  She said she wants to start coming every week and turn her life around.  We gave her a Book of Mormon and she said  "This is food, you know...spiritual food."  Seriously she is an amazing person, she's got an awesome British accent too.

Well, that was Miracle Sunday for you.  Looking forward to another awesome week in Liege!

Soeur Lorraine Hilton

Monday, October 7, 2013

God Speaks

So...this week has been so good!  Let's just start out with the best part--General Conference.  Wasn't it remarkable?  I thought that David M. McConkie's statement about how the message of the Restoration can be summed up into two words, "GOD SPEAKS," exactly expresses my feelings about conference.  I loved how Elder Hales started out the conference by reminding us that these talks are inspired by our Heavenly Father himself.  Before conference I wrote down a really long list with all the questions I had about the gospel, our amis (investigators), and about life in general, and had a prayer in my heart that they would be answered, and they were, "God spoke" to me.  General Conference really was the words of beautiful is that?

So this last Tuesday we had our multi-zone conference in Brussels.  It was a six-hour spiritual feast... but I fell down while running the day before and I couldn't turn my neck, it was painful.  We had to cancel our exchange with the sister training leaders.  Which actually ended up being better because we took all of the awesome spiritual energy from zone conference right back to Liege.  We had specific answers to prayers about our amis during the was amazing...  Also, since our 100 baptism goal is over, we ended up with 115, President Pozanaski revealed our new mission goal --- for each equipe to baptize ONE FAMILY BEFORE CHRISTMAS as a "Cadeau (gift) pour le Christ."  I know that this was an inspired goal, and that each equipe can find, teach, and baptize a family.  But it's going to take a lot of faith, prayer, and most importantly action.  I'd love it if all of you could pray for this.  The church here needs families to support and strengthen the saints of France and Belgium.  The fact that this is an inspired goal was reconfirmed to me during conference during Elder Ballard's talk when he said:

"If every member, young and old, will reach out to just “one” between now and Christmas, millions will feel the love of the Lord Jesus Christ. What a wonderful gift to the Savior." 

This isn't just for the missionaries!  It's for everyone:) But, as my President Pozananski reminded us, "a goal without a plan is just a wish."  Which is why S. Gifford Nielson's talk was so inspired, presenting a "game plan." 1. specifically pray to bring someone closer to the Savior, 2. pray for the missionaries and investigators by name (a family in our ward definitely called us about a week ago to do just that), 3. Invite a friend to an activity.  I have really learned a lot about faith on my mission.  It is not just belief and prayer, but action.  Acting as though what you asked for will happen, and through experience I know that if it's God's will it will happen!  As my companion so eloquently stated "you can make things happen with's kind of like...magic." haha, but really.  I have a testimony of that.  I don't remember who said this in conference, but something along the lines of, "it takes living the word of wisdom (or any principle) to gain a testimony of it."  I think that may be one of the most important reasons we are here on earth --- to learn for ourselves.  We couldn't learn faith when living in the presence of our Father, just like we can't learn patience if everything is handed to's all about progression.  I've been thinking about that a lot.  About our experiences on earth, the power of faith etc.  This stuff is real and powerful and isn't just a nice thing for everyone else, it is possible for everyone.

Sorry about the rambling, that was kind of a Hermana Hilton paragraph :) but less profound, haha.  Anyways other happenings in Liege... There is a GIANT FAIR right in front of my apartment.  Over the next month millions of Europeans will be passing through Liege to enjoy Croustillions, Lacements, Gauffes (Liegeois, Bruxelles), Frites, Pâtes, etc.  There are some giant rides, including a huge Ferris Wheel!  After Conference on Saturday some members took us home, but it was only 8:30, so Sr Johns and I went and checked out opening night!  We found some incredibly delicious food...  And today for P-day we went back... this is going to be an awesome month!  Litterally- RIGHT IN FRONT of our apartment.  like we get off the elevator and walk into the Fair.  Best time to be a missionary in Liege! Vive la Foire! (long live the fair)

That's about it for this week!  Thanks for all you support and prayers:)