I don't know why, but I got emails from several different people this week about my last letter, where I described what PEI is like! So here's more of a description for those who wanted one:
When you go far enough south in Charlottetown, past downtown, you come to a boardwalk. On one side of the boardwalk, there are green hills, and on the other side, there are big red rocks for a few feet until they hit the ocean, which is dark blue in the day and silvery-blue and yellow in the evening. When you walk down the boardwalk in the evening, you face the orange and purple sunset and a lighthouse (I'll have to take a picture of it sometime). There's often fog and wind, but it's warm and sunny.
Downtown Charlottetown has an older style. There are lots of stands on the side of the road--hot dogs, gourmet grilled cheese, ice cream, etc. A few evenings ago, we were contacting downtown and as we walked, there were a couple teenagers playing guitar and singing on one corner. We crossed the street to the other corner and a man was playing a bagpipe (he often plays in the middle of a flat, green park in the evenings). We kept walking and farther down the same block, on Victoria Row (or "Vic Row") were the groups that do the jazz improv all the time. As soon as they were out of sight, we passed a man who often comes into the soup kitchen we volunteer at, playing the violin with a huge crowd around him. On a lot of the buildings downtown, there are little cartoon-style mouse statues (if you can call them that--they're a few inches tall) attached to the building near the ground. I'll have to take a picture sometime.
The church is located in a subdivision called Sherwood, and there's a statue of one of Robin Hood's merry men across the street.
That's good enough for this week:)
This week was pretty full, as usual. We had exchanges with the Sister Training Leaders (weird to say), and so I got to go spend a day in Moncton! Haha. It was an interesting experience... Actually a lot of things happened and some things were really serious, so the exchange was also accompanied with a long talk with the mission president, and it affected the rest of the week. When I got back to Charlottetown, I was really sick, but I couldn't handle being in the apartment, so we've just been working. I'd like to say that just because I pushed through and worked, I had all these great experiences and really loved the work, but I'll be honest, I was pretty miserable working through it all. The week was capped off with a really powerful spiritual experience that answered a lot of prayers and questions I've had for years. And then we had an evening of miracles last night while contacting at the boardwalk--we found lots of young, single men who are interested in learning more.... Who the elders will get to teach haha! We're struggling to build a real teaching pool, but have been blessed with a lot of tender mercies and small miracles as we've depended on the Lord to help us.
I am grateful for a living Church that encourages asking questions because we are dependent on revelation. Because we know answers will come. Because we're confident in our knowledge of God and the reality of the doctrine taught in James 1:5. I've been faced with a lot of questions I don't know the answers to in the last few weeks. But Heavenly Father is a loving and patient Father, and He's been answering me despite my imperfect faith. I'm grateful for the evidences He's given me of the truthfulness of this Church, because I'm able to depend on my own testimony when I develop questions and get a little weakened.
Last night as we were talking to people at the boardwalk, we stopped man who knows a LOT about the Church. He doesn't believe that we're true Christians and threw a lot of arguments at us (in fact, that's been a pretty big pattern this week--people wanting to sway us from what we believe and know). I ended up having to say, "I don't know the answer to all your questions. But I do know that Christ is my Saviour, and He's yours as well. I know that He died for us and that He lives today." He definitely has doubts about our Church still, and has a lot of really negative feelings towards it, but I hope that even if he doesn't believe we're Christians still, he could at least feel the reality of my testimony. Because I know it. I am completely convinced that Christ is my Saviour and that He lives, and I try to live true to that.