Thursday, December 12, 2013

A White Christmas -- December 9, 2013

Hello family!  It has been a CRAZY but wonderful week!

C____ AND B______ GOT BAPTIZED!!!!!!  WOOOOOOOHOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!  Holy cow... I love those girls.  They are such choice spirits, and it was such a JOY teaching them.  They are golden, and totally prepared.  I'm so thankful Heavenly Father allowed me to be a part of their conversion.

 The morning of their baptism, OF COURSE the water heater at our building was out.... SO we had to boil water on the stove in the kitchen and dump in pot after pot to try to warm it up a little!  Haha... at least there weren't ice cubes in the font.  It was a miracle that they could get baptized... With just about zippo support from either parent... It breaks my heart.  We went over a few days before the baptism to their trailer to fill out some paperwork and teach them the last few commandments, and there was such a negative spirit there.  It was a total mess, their father was smoking, swearing, and threatening them.... It was really really sad.  It amazes me that the children are able to even smile or be happy EVER there!  (They don't look too happy in the picture, hahaha but they are HILARIOUS and always laughing and smiling with us).  I was pretty surprised their dad even signed the paper to allow them to be baptized!  Tender mercy!  Those sweet girls have a lot to deal with, but I know that their example has already and will continue to inspire their father and mother to change.

I think I mentioned last week that the Senior Couple came!  Elder and Sister McClellan are A-W-E-S-O-M-E.  They are so funny!  SISTER McCLELLAN IS HILARIOUS!  Pretty sassy and always smiling!  We've already been able to go out teaching with them a few times.  They rock!  They are just what our struggling little branch needs.

With them, we went out and visited a few less-actives.  At one of our visits to a less-active family, I left my coat at their home, so I texted them and said, "Oh no!  I forgot my coat at your house!  Could you bring it with you to church on Sunday?"  TRAPPED!  Hahaha it was a total accident, but it worked!  That less-active family came and stayed all three hours (and brought my coat back for me ;)).  Maybe it was meant to be.

Angola is the coolest at Christmas time.  The "mound" where we live is covered in lights and signs, and Christmas music is playing throughout the day.  You can't help but smile.

Christmas is in the air!  We went with Elder and Sister McClellan to a few community events that were super fun.  One was a "Bethlehem Marketplace" at this HUGE anti-Mormon church.  Haha it was very well done though!  Members of their congregation all dressed up and set up a Bethlehem town in their humongo church that was very realistic.  Roman guards would come up and brisk you, warning you of the foolish talk of the "newborn king", and demanding you pay your taxes!  There were beggars and vendors who would give you samples of figs and fresh bread and such.  And of course, at the end we made it to Jesus.  Pretty neat!  We also went to a Messiah sing along at the Catholic church which was very well done.

It is soooooo stinkin' cold here!  Usually in the teens, with a very brisk breeze.  The past few days have brought snow which is delightful and makes it feel more like Christmas time.

I am SO thankful for my Savior, Jesus Christ.  It is such a wonderful opportunity we have to share our testimonies with all of those around us.  I know that Heavenly Father loves each and every one of us.  That because He loves us, He sent His son to set the perfect example, and to provide a way for us to repent, be healed, and come back to live forever in peace and joy in His presence with our families.  I LOVE THIS GOSPEL!  I know that it is TRUE.

I love you all!  Thanks for the letters and love and prayers.  THEY ARE FELT.

Love forever,

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