I've been speechless throughout this last few days as I've watched people come together to help the evacuees. We have over 300 in Cold Lake alone! Everyone wants to something, anything to help those effected. Wednesday, we were at the food bank, and we were approached my the Anglican and Lutheran pastors. They asked if we wanted to participate in a council with all of the religious leaders of Cold Lake! We were so shocked! But of course we said yes! We were able to attend a meeting on Friday with everyone, and it was amazing to see all of us work together, even though we are of different faiths. We all knew it wasn't about us, it's about the people in Fort McMurray. It's easier to help people when you are unified in your purpose. As of right now, there's not much we can help with besides gathering items that are needed, but we're on call for when the Red Cross comes in to help.
On Wednesday, we got to go to the coolest concert I've ever been to! It's a group called Watoto. It is children from Uganda who were either orphaned or abandoned who have been taken in by this group to receive an education. They go around the world singing to raise money for their school, and everything they sang was about their gratitude to Heavenly Father for loving and caring for them enough to send His son, Jesus Christ. I was in tears before the first song was over! So often we here people talk about how God can't exist because he lets children starve in Africa. And here are those starving children who know that Heavenly Father has a plan for them! It was incredible to hear their stories and testimonies. I think the coolest part was towards the end. They took time during their show to pray specifically for those effected by Fort McMurray. It was so emotional to see 18 kids all praying out loud for people they didn't even know! It was one of those experiences that you know will change you forever!
We got to do something pretty crazy on Thursday in St. Paul, we got to help slaughter a pig! it was crazy! I never thought I would do something like that, but it was pretty cool, not gonna lie! Haha we got to see all of its organs, and how to properly cut all of the meat. Pretty crazy! Then the guy gave us some LLAMA hamburger to take home! Yep, llama! This guy is so crazy! But I can't wait to try it! I guess it's supposed to taste just like beef, I'll let you know next week! Haha
Friday, we had a lesson with our investigator, W, and a members house, the W's! They've been friends for a long time, and it was awesome of them to have us over. We showed the Mormon Message, Sanctify Yourselves, and talked more about the Priesthood. He looks at it as a military structure or flow chart, but we helped him see that it's more than an organization, it's a power! The Spirit was so strong, and it seemed to really effect him! We're getting through to this guy! It's an absolute blast teaching him, and I've never met someone so blunt and straight to the point. It's so easy to discover his faith need because he tells you what he needs! He's still got a long ways to go, but his conversion process is helping him gain his testimony through his own experience, and I couldn't ask for anything more!
It was so amazing to talk to you guys on Sunday! It felt like a dream! Haha and it went so quickly, but it makes the world of a difference to have an entire force of people supporting me in this experience. I know I can do this because all of you are telling me that I can! I feel of your prayers and love in more ways than I can say. Thank you for making my life so much easier by sending that extra strength my way. It is truly appreciated.
Between the economy plummeting and nature taking its course in burning Fort McMurray, the people of Alberta have been humbled in almost every way possible. I feel so blessed to be in this province in the greatest time of need. People are just reaching for hope, and I know that the source of that hope is Jesus Christ. There isn't a better place in the world for me to be a servant of the Lord than right here, right now. I get to witness miracles every single day, and I know those miracles will continue as we work towards recovering Fort Mac. Please pray for those who lost their homes, businesses, and especially for those fighting the fire! They have worked tirelessly and selflessly to contain this beast of a fire. Any and all faith in their direction can and will make a difference! I love you crazy people! Thank you will all of my heart for letting me experience this glorious mission.
Have a wonderful week!
Sister Bethany Christensen