This is the best week of the year - Christmas, my birthday, and New Year's Eve all in one! Don't worry, we have more than enough chocolate to celebrate.
Christmas was wonderful. Talking to family was, of course, the highlight! And it didn't make me miss home as much as I thought it would - it was just really nice. :) However, after we skyped home, my companion and I went to a dinner appointment. Then we went to another dinner appointment. Then I got sick. I still feel unwell, but it's probably more due to the fact that our water has been contaminated for the last week and a half and no one told us....whoops. No wonder our whole district is sick. But hey, it could be worse! Our elders had a dinner appointment last week where they were fed pork skin and one of them was up all night throwing up. So I really can't complain! 90% of the time, food in the Hispanic wards is the best.
I also got to play the organ in sacrament meeting yesterday and it was really sweet because this ward hadn't had anyone who could play organ in a really long time and it made them really happy. We also had an awesome lesson last night with a new investigator who has a TON of potential! The funny thing about lessons is that my Spanish is fine whenever we're teaching. I understand basically everything and I can get my ideas across okay. But when we're not in a lesson, I'm still pretty lost. I think the Lord helps me just enough to do the work He needs me to do. From here, I have a lot of work to do to improve.
I was reading a talk this week and there was an idea that caught my attention. With regards to missionary work, and to lifting those around us, the author wrote that none of us can reach everyone, but each of us can reach someone. She expressed how wonderful it would be if each person in the church brought just one other person to full activity. What a huge impact that would make!! SO....I invite each of you reading this who is a member of the Church to commit to bring one person to full activity in the Church in 2016. This person could be a less-active member or someone who isn't yet baptized into the Church. To you who are reading this who are not members of the Church, I invite you to try something new this year. At https://www.lds.org/
scriptures/bofm/bofm-title? lang=eng you can find the Book of Mormon. At mormon.org you can read more about the Church and why this book is so important.
God loves all of His children. There are no exceptions. He wants each of us to be happy. Sure, we may find pleasure and temporary happiness in the world. We can spend time with family and serve others and go on fun vacations - but there is only one source of true joy. There is only one path that leads to eternal happiness and everlasting life. Jesus Christ said, "I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father but by me"(John 14:6). There is only one church on Earth where mankind can find the fulness Christ's gospel. There is only one church on Earth that holds His authority to perform saving ordinances like baptism and confirmation. That church is The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. We don't bring people into the Church because we want bigger congregations or more tithing money or because we're competing with the size of other churches. We bring people into the Church because we know of God's incomprehensible love for every single one of us and we know that this is the only way back to His presence. Please. Make a new friend, call someone you haven't seen in a while, pray. I promise that as you ask Heavenly Father in faith to help you achieve this goal, He will help, and you will see miracles and blessings you can't even imagine right now. I also know that we who possess the truth are commanded to share it. As Joseph Smith stated, "After all has been said and done, the greatest and most important duty is to preach the Gospel."
gifts we made for the ppl we work with
Sister Carpenter in a bag
people from Ottawa
food from the Greenfield Park ward